Just a few hours ago I pressed the submit button for my 4th Ludum Dare entry (I actually had to go to my games page and count how many I had done!). However, this time around it was very different. Most notably it was because I worked with a team for 72 hours rather than alone for 48 and it sure was a whole new experience!
Normally when one thinks of a game jam with others, I imagine a group of people crammed into the same room for a few hours working on something great but it wasn’t exactly like that. We DID end up creating something awesome but we were not in the same room. Our medium of communication was solely a private IRC chat room. While we did have an online white board set up, we didn’t really use it as we were able to communicate our ideas well enough through the IRC chat. We also shared assets with the ever-so-handy service, DropBox, by sharing a folder amongst ourselves so that all assets were updated in real-time. All I can say is that I am grateful for technology as well as happy that the four of us meshed together so well!
Now onto the game! Nanonauts is a game of exploration and adventure. The main attraction is the “stargate” system that the player can use to travel between randomly generated worlds and the ship. The stargates themselves feature a fully functioning dialing system (although persistent worlds were not added in time) that requires players to punch in a five symbol planet address in order to travel to new worlds. The worlds themselves are fairly small in order to fit the theme, however the style gives Nanonauts a unique feel. The key features are:
- Working Stargate Network
- Randomly generated “tiny planets”
- 5 unique monsters
- Awesome sound track & artwork
- …and a game that we are proud of!
However, this is not the end of road for this game. Seeing how far we came in the past weekend, we are not ready to shelf the game just yet. We still want to get the features we had in mind into the game, which includes:
- Persistent worlds
- A tech tree
- General plot
- Upgradable tools, weapons, and player ship
- Item crafting/resource gathering
- More robust world generation
However, that is all for now but more will be announced as we begin to add new features to the game. Until then, enjoy the jam version!