We're IN for LD44 (UPDATE 2)

Evil Brain will be taking part in Ludum Dare 44, led by the inimitable Ham! and also Rusty will be helping. Probably Charles. We will be showing our progress on twitter as well as this blog post.

As roles solidify and the event progresses this post will be updated! For now, we will definitely be IN.
(Now go vote on a theme before it’s too late!)


The theme has been announced! It’s not specifically what we were rooting for, but we’re having fun with the theme so far. Our concept is a spelunker-type platformer where you use a grapple rope and bow-and-arrow to descend into a dark and increasingly deadly crypt. Along the way there are opportunities for well-needed upgrades, but every one of them costs a portion of your max health, leaving you permanently more vulnerable.

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We made good progress for Day 1, imho. In ten way-too-short hours we were able to nail down our concept, start the machinations on some background narrative stuff (more on that later!) and get the platform movement, grappling hook, and basic bow-and-arrow functions working, as well as create a ton of graphic and sound assets for the game. I even got the lighting finished right before I collapsed into bed.

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While we are all giving input on all aspects of the game, the team has more-or-less solidified into: Ham on narrative design, graphics, and sound effects; Rusty on programming and animation; Charles on music, menu design and odds-and-bobs (inarguably the most important and overlooked task of all)

For day two we are going to focus on turning our mechanics into gameplay, starting with a moving camera, a whole system for dying and handling death, and some shiny new friends to kill you.


Day 2 was a lot of work and a lot of progress and we finally figured out a name for the project. Part of the game since the beginning has been a “voice” in your character’s head. This takes the form of text floating up the screen, gently parallaxing in front of the action, brightly lit against the darkness behind it.

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This “voice” is the entity which expresses the jam’s theme: at certain junctures throughout the game you will have the option to “transact” with the entity, giving up some of your (maximum) life for various upgrades which make the rest of the game easier. The name came about when we were designing the dark little altars where these transactions take place, at a loss for what to refer to the character as we started referring to them as “our dear friend” and when we circled back looking for a name, well, it seemed to fit.

After getting the basic camera and text blitting systems down that we needed to tell our story, we more or less created the basic gameplay loop for the game, polishing and finishing player control and animation and adding in health and death and limited arrows and a spider baddie who is all too glad to drop down and kill you. We even got in retrievable arrows and a little flying moth for a heath pickup.

Today we’re going to be working to implement the narrative elements of the game as well as widen the scope of the ways to die and start in on heavy level editing and design.