Gamejam entry: Disc Over Y

For Ludum Dare 19 in December of 2010, I had a go at developing a game in C++ for the first time, using the Allegro library. Considering I had no real experience with the language or library, it's amazing I ended up with anything playable at all.

Disc Over Y

The theme for LD19 was 'Discovery' and I set out to create an epic 'Metroidvania' platforming affair with a variable zoom camera that would get in close in confined spaces and provide wide shots of larger areas. What I 'discovered' was that I was completely unprepared to create a game of this scope using these technologies.

Disc Over Y gamemap

The gamemap is large. As rendered ingame, the map is 13312 * 20992 pixels. And that's just for one layer. The game has background, foreground and collision layers. All of which is loaded into memory uncompressed as the game starts and sits there until you quit. Basically, you needed gigabytes of memory just to launch the game. Worked great on my development machine, less optimally on every other computer that tried to run it.

Exploration

But what about the game itself? Technical problems aside, it's not too bad. You wander a large environment, completely alone and without true guidance. Exploration leads you to find a number of upgrades for your character, granting better jumping and the ability to pass through 'laser doors'. The final upgrade gives the player the ability to destroy terrain - the entire game map is destructible.

Destruction

Once the player has the ability to destroy any arbitrary terrain they are able to access a hangar containing an escape ship and leave win the game. But honestly it's more fun to rampage around the map tearing holes in everything.

Destruction

Enough judges were evidently able to run the game for it to place #20th in the graphics category and #54th overall of the 285 entries.