Johan Peitz - Let's make SOMETHING


Bee’s Knees Bees

In an evil scheme to get more Twitter followers I arranged a small raffle where I would make a game for the winner. The winner was @ZoeQiunnzel (congratulations!) and she asked for a game about bees.

Initially my plan was to spend two hours making the game, but by then the game was only half done so I spent two more getting it more or less to a complete state. No harm done.

two hours in


Anyway the result is a bit weird I think, but quite playable. :) A fun exercise before next weekend's Ludum Dare.

Let's make honey!

Please enjoy the life of a bee swarm now!

My best result is 873. Can you beat that? ;)



BATHOS – a recap

Today the voting session for the latest Ludum Dare  challenge was over and the result announced! All in all, there was a staggering 599 entries submitted - in one weekend! An amazing amount of games, and a lot of them really well made and interesting.

My game BATHOS received some really great comments and I'm very happy with the end result as well. Bathos placed 3rd in the Theme category (bronze!!!), 7th in Graphics, 18th in Humor, 19th in Community, and 50th in Innovation. All summed up this led to a 32nd place overall. Not bad considering the amount of entries, the little time I actually spent on the game, and the fact that the game is based on single red herring mechanic. :)

If you haven't played it yet, here's a screenshot and a link:


One thing that really made me happy was the amount of site that picked up on BATHOS right away. I've tried to collect them all here, but if you know of any more sites, please let me know!

Reviews (of BATHOS):

General coverage of the event  (that includes BATHOS):
That's it for this Ludum Dare I think. I'm really happy with what I made and would like to use it for something larger. I've already ported the game to my own engine and started adding a few features. Hopefully it will turn into something at least as interesting. Stick around and you'll see!

BIG Jam ’11 – Post Mortem

So, BIG Jam eventually came an end (last Monday actually) - what a weekend! It started out slow, mostly because I had a terrible cold and that I didn't know anyone. But on the final day I'm finally felt a lot better and I had met amazing people and made some great friends!

The jam sessions were very rewarding. I didn't think I would get that much done in so few hours but it obviously was possible. I really liked the presentation format where people had to show off their jam results for all to be amazed by. I saw some really awesome stuff! Before I forget everything I thought it would be a good idea to make a little post mortem of the whole thing. It's mostly focused on the actual jamming, but here goes:

Things that worked less well:

  • Being sick
  • Too few talks
  • Bad eating habits
  • Bad UI sucks

Things that worked well:

  • Cooperating
  • Solo jams
  • Sticking to the scope(s)
  • My fairly new component based engine
  • Nobody notices a good ui, but it makes all the difference

To summarize...

  • Jams are intense, make sure to be well rested and eat properly!
  • Talks are fun and everybody enjoys them, why not talk about something yourself next time?
  • Team up! Proper presentation (in my case pretty graphics) really do a lot to prototypes and you can focus on the coding.
  • Don't be afraid to go solo on a jam. It is very rewarding to pull off a game on your own in such short time.
  • Stick to the scope! It is way to easy to get carried away halfway through production. Don't.
  • Come prepared! Having a framework that allows for rapid prototyping is critical in order to get anything done. This jam I barely wrote a single of line engine code.
  • If there is time (which there always is early on so do this right away), plan your ui. This can be anything from meters or plain text. But make sure it's there. When it is presentation time, it will make is som much easier for people playing (and not playing) to understand what's going on.
  • Player feedback! If something (ANYTHING) happens in the game, regardless wether is is by player input or not, make it show. Make updated ui elements flash, activated game objects blink, etc.

The games:

Alien Circus
gfx by Marek
code by me
Cat Escape
gfx by SquirrelSquid
code by me
Eat and/or die!
gfx by me
code by me
Chicago IX
gfx by me
code by me
Shooting Range
gfx by me
code by me

That is all I think. There's also some photos of the whole event here (courtesy of @zoewi). All in all I had so much fun, big thank yous to all who participated in anyway!


Shooting Range – last 3 hour game

Last jam game! I was pretty exhausted from the earlier days but decided join the final jam and make a final game. This time the theme was 'mysterious enemy'. I didn't really come up with any ideas so I just made things up as I went along.

I did know that I wanted to make at least one platformer during the weekend and since this was my final shot I went with that as base and started adding stuff. End result has you running around while jumping to avoid laser beams shot by a mysterious enemy.

Watch those lasers!

>>> PLAY HERE <<< (You need to reload the page to restart the game - sorry! )

That is all the games I made at BIG Jam! I'll make a summary post when things are back to normal. :)


Chicago IX – a 5 hour game

Yesterday's jam sessions formed around making a game inspired by an album cover. I quickly chose the cover of Chicago IX, an album that have, and still could, listen to again and again. The cover shows a platform that is used to scale high buildings, and I assume it is used for everything from window cleaning to painting. Anyway, I decided to make a game about that.

In the game (which is extra fun if played with a friend) little guys walk around on the platform while it is rising. Since the guys are walking around the platform will tilt and it is up to you to balance it back again by tugging at the ropes. If you get to the top with one or more guys still on the platform, you continue to the next level which sports more guys on the platform but essentially the same gameplay. However, as the weight increases on the platform it eventually becomes harder to control, increasing the difficulty of the game.


Gotta save 'em all!

>>> PLAY HERE <<<

Have fun, and try playing it cooperatively with a friend!


Eat and/or Die – 3 hour game 3

This time I decided to go solo. The theme words where 'delicios' and 'suicide' and I decided to make a game about eating (something a lot of other people did too).

The object of the game is to raise your cholesterol to 100% and explode. Delicious suicide indeed. To do this you have to eat falling cakes, and avoid falling veggies. Sounds easy but you must also make sure you don't draop too many food items on the follr as it will end up in game over. So there is some balancing there that the player has to do. Also, if you eat too many veggies and end up at 0% cholesterol, you die of starvation (bad ending!).

Eat! Eat! Eat!

>>> PLAY HERE <<<

Have fun getting to all the 3 endings!


3 hour game number 2 – Cat Escape

Another game made in 3 hours! This time with graphics by SquirrelSquid and code by me. Theme words were 'cat' and 'free' and the concept we came up with was something like this:
Play as a cat and find keys so that you can free your friends trapped in cages. Dogs try to stop you but they can only move like the towers in chess. Get to the key before they catch you.
All levels are randomly generated so some times they are very easy or very hard. Luckily, if you get caught a new level will be generated for you.
I'm quite happy with the concept, but the actual prototype obviously needs more work.

Get to the key!

>>> PLAY HERE <<<



Alien Circus – made in 3 hours

So here I am at the Berlin Indie Game Jam making games with 29 other lunatics. First activity: make a game in 3 hours. Two words were pulled out of a hat to be used as common theme for all. Zero Gravity, and Acrobatics. I teamed up with Marek (graphics artist of Spirits fame) and we started brain storming.

Here is the result of 3 hours frantic development, crashing computers and drawings photographed with an iPhone:
Alien Circus

Watch out for the spikes!

>>> PLAY HERE <<< Enjoy, and let me know how many jumps you got as most!