Game Jam’s are one of my favourite things about the Indie Game Community. Huge numbers of people come together either online or in person with a common goal, making a game against the clock, usually with a theme to involve that they don’t know until the time limit begins. It’s a chance for people to test out their wildest ideas without having to make a full length game, a chance to take some risks and it’s often a breeding ground for creative and experimental game ideas. We at Indie Haven love seeing new game concepts, so we’ve decided to start showcasing some of our favourite games from various game jams, starting with LD48.

Next up on the Game Jam interview list is Callahan Porter, developer of “ AUGURY&VICTORY VOL 1”. The game can be downloaded for free for PC here.

Laura: For those who don’t know you, could you introduce yourself?

Callahan Porter: Alright. I am Callahan Porter, a micro indie who made a small game called Grid Zombies. I also draw comics and other things.

Laura: What was the theme of the game jam you took part in?

Callahan Porter: Minimalism

Laura: Could you describe the game you made? How did it make use of the theme?

Callahan Porter: Oh dear. Well, on the surface level, I guess it’s a game about collecting butterflies and beating an end boss. It features a minimalistic art style as well as minimalistic game mechanics and boss patterns. It also sort of has a deeper meaning I suppose. I actually wasn’t sure what I was going to do with minimalism as a theme.

You see, It’s sort of a game about life. The idea was that the butterfly represents someone who’s down (i.e. depression or a disease of some sort) and that’s why you’re so slow and unable to see due to a border around your field of vision. The other butterflies represent your friends (they’re similar to you) and collecting them is basically the equivalent of collecting support. Generally, when you have more support, you become happier and in the game this means faster and more lively. The border also fades with each butterfly collected, making butterfly collecting easier and less tedious. Eventually, you beat out whatever is getting you down and you fight the end boss, who is kind of a statement; if you could beat that, you can beat anything.

That was a big description >_>

Laura: Is this the first game jam you’ve taken part in?

Callahan Porter: Actually, yes. I was originally going to take part in the Global Game Jam in January, but I kind of chickened out.

Laura: And what made you decide to get involved this time?

Callahan Porter: I don’t know, the sound of doing it at home with the inclusion of breaks and a more comfortable sleeping space was really appealing and I guess it was an opertunity to improve my skills. I was originally conflicted about whether to make a pretentious art game or an arcade-y game. Art game came out on top.

Laura: Any special reason art game won out?

Callahan Porter: I guess because I had already done an arcade-esque game through Grid Zombies. I don’t think I like doing art games because I typically put in content that is richer than I am and I generally don’t feel attached to them. That and the mechanics in my arcade-y games are more focused.

Laura: Lastly, what was the biggest challenge you faced creating the game?

Callahan Porter: Probably really annoying glitches. For example, There was a glitch were the player (when they collected their first butterfly) wouldn’t change speed, but rather would lose all deceleration, so they would fly endlessly until off-screen.

Callahan also provided us with a step by step breakdown of his progress during the Game Jam, which can be seen below.

 

Read the theme

Boot up the program

Grab some chill music to listen to (Fez Soundtrack)

Make a crappy 3D model of a face

Edit it in Photoshop and what not

Make a 2 frame flickering animation

Open Construct 2

Insert the flickering face

Improvise an art style that accommodated the theme

Low resolution soopah simple black and white YEEAHH!

Make a grey background

Make a grey butterfly

Animate said grey butterfly

Give the grey butterfly movement

Make cool particle things come out of butterfly

Mom brings me super unhealthy food

Consume said food

Make mountains

Make trees

Work that parallax magic

Make clouds

Make clones of butterfly, scatter em around map, some hiding behind clouds

Make them collectible

Wonder why are they worth collecting

It hits me; this game is about life sorta (I know groan right?)

But it is because things start off slow and miserable (your character) and things pick up as you collect support from others (the other butterflies) to conquer the major negative in your life (the annoying frame that hinders you from seeing the other butterflies). And in the end, there’s a reward (cool boss fight and super speed)

So I make the butterflies add to a variable

As the variable increases, the frames opacity decreases, and the speed of the butterfly increases, making finding other butterflies progressively easier and less tedious

In the end you’re super fast!

There were problems with this. Apparently I was using the wrong command, so that led to some problems.

Made black fade out screen

Delete stupid 3D face

About The Author

Founding Member

Laura’s gaming journey began in the 90′s when she was given a SNES by her older brother with Mario paint. From that day video games were all she thought about day or night, be it playing them, designing them, discussing them or writing about them. Why does she want to write about indie games? Because indie devs are awesome and she wants to be their new best friend by telling them how terrible their games are. That’s how it works right? Twitter: @LauraKBuzz Email: Laurak@indiehaven.com

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