Ludum Dare 18

Ludum Dare 18 is over. The theme was “Enemies as Weapons”. My entry is called “Protractor”, it’s a katamari shmup!

Competition Entry




  • Kill enemies and collect their parts to build.
  • Use left mouse to pull parts to you to attach them.
  • Colors indicate health level. Purple is super high health, red is about to die.
  • Weapons are randomized but also normalized to all have the same DPS. So on average they will cause the same amount of damage over time. Larger bullets represent more damage.
  • Try to keep your ship balanced or it will become difficult to control.
  • Triangle – Weapon (random but normalized to the same DPS)
  • Square – Healer (auto repairs ship and attached parts)
  • Pentagon – Speed Booster (increases speed and turn rate)
  • Circle – Extender (allows for expansion)


  • Left Mouse – Tractor beam
  • Spacebar or Right Mouse – Shoot
  • Mouse Wheel – Zoom
  • WASD – Move your ship
  • Alt+Enter – Go fullscreen (recommended)


Saturday Night Progress Report

Core functionality is in. Enemies are composed of parts. Enemies drop parts when they die and player can attach them. Part types are: shooter, engine, healer, and extend. Tomorrow: weapon randomization, better AI, tweaking and game flow.

Sunday Afternoon Progress Report

I finished first playable. All the basics are in. 5 hours left for tweaking and adding more weapons.

Final Report

The name of my entry is “Protractor”. I’m happy with how it turned out.ย  Visually I hit exactly the mark I was going for. I didn’t get much time to play when I was actually working on it but after playing it a bit now I can safely say that it’s pretty fun.

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3 Responses to Ludum Dare 18

  1. Almost says:

    Looks very slick. Some nice visual touches and polish on what appears to be a solid idea.

  2. invicticide says:

    I finally got around to playing it after I said I would this morning and then the whole day disappeared. :o

    I like the idea a lot; it’s a bit reminiscent of Captain Forever. Strapping loads of stuff onto my ship and flying around dealing death from my ridiculous junkmobile is definitely appealing. ;)

    One thing that really messes with my head in this game though — and even though I quickly realized what was going on, it still keeps screwing me — is that I have a mouse cursor, and I use a mouse button to shoot, but my bullets don’t shoot toward the cursor. They shoot along the forward vector of the component, which I can only control using the A and D keys. It feels like all my components should orient toward my cursor position, and then those which are blocked by other parts of my ship simply don’t fire.

    I also wish the default rate of fire was, like, 5x faster, even if that meant each bullet’s damage was 1/5 to compensate.

    But overall, not a bad effort for your first Ludum Dare. ^_^

  3. Frank says:

    Thanks! I’m working on some ideas for how to improve controls. Using the mouse to aim is something I want to incorporate but am still working out the details.

    The weapon fire rate was a little low in the actual submission version, I’ve turned it up a little bit since then. But I’m trying not to have it high for 2 reasons. 1. I like the player to be able to dodge at least some shots and gaps between projectiles allows for this. 2. Adding all these projectiles and trail effects impacts performance.

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