Ludum Dare Crisis

Ludum Dare Crisis

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gajop
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Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by gajop » 09 Jun 2016, 04:55

As some of you are aware, in recent days there have been a few events (http://ludumdare.com/compo/2016/06/07/ld-is-cancelled/ and http://ludumdare.com/compo/2016/06/08/w ... awkward-2/) that might signal an issue with the August LD jam.
These are all fresh news, but currently the main and only organizer won't be running the jam, so it might not happen unless the community picks it up.
In case it gets cancelled, we should figure out if we want to do something instead.

Particularly, there seems to be an interest in running a Spring jam, with the idea of focusing on a single project in a short amount of time.
This seems interesting to me as well, although picking a project that everyone can be involved in may be difficult.

There's still plenty of time to decide, and I'm sure we'll hear a bit more from the LD organization in the following weeks, but nonetheless I would like to hear what other people think about this in the meanwhile. We should discuss potential projects (a vote would be held beforehand in any case), and if the interest is high enough we may consider running it regardless of the LD cancellation outcome.

Personally I think some of these things would be interesting projects:
1) Ingame lobby
2) ZK to Steam effort
For potential projects I think we should consider whether they're large enough to be tackled by multiple people, and whether or not it would take too much time to get acquainted with the development environment. If we do tackle an existing project, I would expect the current owner(s) of it to provide substantial documentation so we don't waste time learning from source.

Update wrt LD: http://ludumdare.com/compo/2016/06/09/a ... ou-decide/
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Silentwings
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Silentwings » 09 Jun 2016, 08:11

Since his intention is to take a 6 month break from running LDs, in order to write a website capable of handling what LD has grown into (seems very sensible to me) I don't see its a crisis ;) But, for the single case of the August event, it might not happen.

A Spring jam sounds like a fine thing to do instead.

I don't know what prevents ZK from going onto steam, but I can't imagine its a lack of skills in game-side coding & art. I think our usual LD team is much better placed to tackle (1).
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smoth
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by smoth » 09 Jun 2016, 08:31

you have me for whatever you need for as long as I can contribute. Spring Jam, Ludum Dare, whatever, I am down.
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 09 Jun 2016, 19:20

Spring jam could be useful. However, I would like to propose that if that happened that the focus be put on projects that benefit all of the games for spring.

Lua lobby, scened, etc

OR the focus be put on projects with promise that only have one or 2 devs to work on them like

BAR, Evo, Metal Factions (I really like this one), S44, etc (no *a because obvious reasons)

BAR is debatable only because it has several people on it already, but I wouldn't be butthurt to get some oomph behind it. Imo ZK would not qualify for a lot of reasons. Personally if I were to vote for one that isn't Evo I would absolutely go for Metal Factions. I really like what he's working towards.

All that aside, a spring jam would be great, but I think it would work out best if we worked in a project or series of projects (game agnostic) that benefit the entire community, and hell who knows, people might actually get excited again #ihaveadream

Oh, one big fat stipulation... if we were to work on a spring game, all of the work needs to be committed upstream. It's ridiculous how many spring games don't commit fixes and improvements upstream. A perfect example? CUS, LUPS, the list goes on.

Anyway, I'm pretty much down for whatever.
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smoth
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by smoth » 10 Jun 2016, 09:03

not everyone can help with those and you get people pushing for pet projects or projects they want to improve their own game. That isn't the point.
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 10 Jun 2016, 09:22

What is a pet project? Lua lobby? CUS? LUPS?

You didn't specify which part you were against. Your post reads as though you are against a spring jam altogether.

Isn't the main point of this to accomplish something while having fun doing it? Don't lose sight of the main goal
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Silentwings
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Silentwings » 10 Jun 2016, 09:28

It should be up to projects to put a hand up and suggest themselves if they want general help as part of some LD styled weekend. In particular, I don't think our LD team should go looking for projects to help out on.

I'm much more in favour of working on code that has community wide benefit (the obvious current target is lua lobby & associated ingame menus) or which makes a brand new LD style game. From my own point of view I'm unlikely to join in with anything else, but since I've only made it to half the previous LDs, that shouldn't prevent the rest of you.
if we worked
Forb, I had thought you'd ruled yourself out of future LDs? (in viewtopic.php?f=90&t=34156#p574821)
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gajop
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by gajop » 10 Jun 2016, 11:09

Silentwings wrote:It should be up to projects to put a hand up and suggest themselves if they want general help as part of some LD styled weekend. In particular, I don't think our LD team should go looking for projects to help out on.
Definitely. Only projects whose owners are willing to participate, and essentially lead, during the jam will be taken up to consideration.

I would also rule out small projects/libraries as it's very hard to do a proper separation of work. This would mean the project in question wouldn't be Chili, LUPS, CUSF and similar.

My personal suggestion is chili lobby (or what will be known as Chobby), and essentially everything else required to have a good (ingame) lobby. This means that besides the Lua lobby itself, it would also involve work on: Uberserver, Matchmaking bot, pr-downloader (+engine integration), engine, chili, chilifx, chotify, and more.
I think it meets a number of criteria that makes it a good candidate:
- The main component of the project (Lua lobby) itself isn't too large to comprehend in your average jam (preparation) time.
- It has a clear community-wide benefit, and even if you aren't interested in an ingame lobby, improving other components would be beneficial to pretty much everyone.
- There are a lot of components that separating work even in big teams wouldn't be difficult. It could also use its brand new set of Public Domain 2D UI art.

Whatever the project, we would still need to specify the scope and goal for the weekend, so we can aim for a deliverable. Doing so now would of course not be possible, as any project's state is likely to change before the jam.

PS: Crisis title is just clickbait ;)
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gajop
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by gajop » 10 Jun 2016, 15:04

I forgot to add, some ZK devs have expressed interest in using an ingame lobby, so essentially this might also help with getting ZK to Steam earlier, although the focus of the jam would still be in making a game-agnostic lobby for the Spring server.
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raaar
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by raaar » 10 Jun 2016, 18:56

Forboding Angel wrote: Personally if I were to vote for one that isn't Evo I would absolutely go for Metal Factions. I really like what he's working towards.
Thanks for supporting my game, feedback is welcome, but I'm not looking for more dev help. I'm currently working on an upgrade system for units and commanders and some new commander morph options which should be out this weekend.

Instead of focusing on something new and shiny, like a new lobby, how about going through the boring but necessary job of fixing what we already have?
- lobby server/infrastructure : scalability (can we have a thousand simultaneous players?), communication standards (for lobby clients, etc.)
- issues with existing lobbies : stability, usability
- issues with latest engine version

The more lobbies there are, the harder it is for game devs to support players using different lobbies and having issues.
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Silentwings
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Silentwings » 10 Jun 2016, 19:09

Because the group of people involved here are primarily game/lua developers.
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gajop
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by gajop » 10 Jun 2016, 19:20

raaar wrote:...
Two things:
1) People who don't participate have no say. Are you going to do the work?
2) I disagree with your suggestions:
2.a) *New* and *shiny* is attractive, fixing bugs isn't. Scalability and lobby protocol work are essentially "new" stuff, as they need major protocol rework. (Some of it might be done in parallel with ingame lobby work, although I'd put off scaling as a separate issue which I have planned already)
2.b) The only way existing lobbies can be improved is by adding major protocol support (which would be required for a decent ingame lobby too). Also very importantly, none of the (existing) lobby project owners has stepped up and suggested work be done for their lobby.
2.c) Focusing strictly on the engine is a bad choice. Most jam participants have no experience working with the engine, and many have no commit rights. Engine changes need to be very well designed and vetted (a much higher degree of standard than for other projects). And "fixing engine bugs" sound like the most boring jam.

+What silentwings said
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FLOZi
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by FLOZi » 10 Jun 2016, 21:58

I vote for a mass wiki editing :lol:
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 10 Jun 2016, 22:46

Silentwings wrote:
if we worked
Forb, I had thought you'd ruled yourself out of future LDs? (in viewtopic.php?f=90&t=34156#p574821)
Competetive LDs. I'm all for helping work on community projects that benefit the community as a whole. I think that's an excellent idea. I would love to see a spring jam focused around lualobby or scened, for example.

Also, remember that I have several projects of my own (small as they might be) that are purely for community benefit (as do many others, most obvious person would be smoth and gajop). Whether anyone uses them is another story ofc.
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 10 Jun 2016, 22:49

FLOZi wrote:I vote for a mass wiki editing :lol:
You jest, but this is actually an excellent idea tbh.
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Google_Frog » 11 Jun 2016, 16:56

Personally I think some of these things would be interesting projects:
1) Ingame lobby
2) ZK to Steam effort
From my point of view these are effectively the same projects. There are no projects within the ZK game which are both necessary and glamorous. I could list some necessary tasks or fun side-features but I don't think that is the purpose of a jam. My prediction for the ZK game is a bunch of configuration culling/hiding along with some bugfixes and resilience. I can't even think of blocking bugs (except possibly some to do with hardware incompatibility).

ZK as a whole is stalled on infrastructure due to a lack of free time of the core developers. I am becoming convinced that, to see progress, I need to be the core developer for the lobby and lua lobby looks like a good candidate for the basis of something I can core develop. I could learn the codebase for Weblobby or ZKL but there seems to be decent progress with lua lobby so I would like to focus there first. TLDR: I would definitely get involved in a lua lobby jam.

There is one other possible ZK related project. KingRaptor is making a singleplayer campaign and seems to be pumping out missions. I don't know his exact progress or what would be involved but some sort of 'mission making infrastructure' jam could be worthwhile. I think he is using Mission Editor along with editing lua directly.

Edit: Would work on lua lobby possibly extend to engine changes? One downside of lua lobby is that it would be significantly harder to do mass testing for new engine versions because afaik Spring cannot manage engine downloads and restart itself to different versions. I am not too worried about this in the short term because we would freeze the engine version while gearing up for a Steam release and we would not change the engine for a reasonable time afterwards. However, if that state of affairs continues I worry about engine development. I think history has shown that engines need a lot of widespread testing if you want to be sure that they work.
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 11 Jun 2016, 21:12

If lua lobby core were a rapid package, keeping project's lua lobby updated would be trivially easy.
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hokomoko
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by hokomoko » 11 Jun 2016, 21:43

Spring cannot manage engine downloads and restart itself to different versions
We're actually not very far from this.
pr-downloader is already embedded in spring, so engine downloads are possible, and Spring.Restart could easily be tweaked to start a different engine.
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Forboding Angel
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by Forboding Angel » 11 Jun 2016, 22:32

Ok stupid question time... would it be feasible for spring versions to start existing alongside one another without needing separate folders?

Immediately this raises some red flags in my mind with things like compiled ai and base content etc.

However the ability to have versions exist right next to one another would be pretty cool I think.
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hokomoko
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Re: Ludum Dare Crisis

Post by hokomoko » 11 Jun 2016, 22:51

Ok stupid question time... would it be feasible for spring versions to start existing alongside one another without needing separate folders?
The pros are heavily outweighed by the cons here
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