World of Spacecraft: Extinction – GGJ 2011

This year’s Global Game Jam proved to be another awesome time. I had the pleasure of working with Stefan Woskowiak, David Turchin, Alex Krasij, Zhaowen Zeng, Kendall Noble, Athena Anderson, and Burak Karakas. And we ROCKED it. In fact, although we didn’t get any awards this year, we were invited by Arthur Ward to show off our game at Babycastles’ “Home Sweet Babycastles” exhibition/concert/crazy chiptune madness game party. Somewhere (Athena’s got it) there’s a picture of Ary Warnaar from Anamanaguchi playing our game and having a great time doing so.

The game is called World of Spacecraft: Extinction. And you can play it by clicking on the image below:

Yes, we know that even though the theme was “extinction” we were supposed to try to avoid anything that had to do with dinosaurs or zombies. But c’mon, how could we resist? I feel like we did the theme justice enough without being too painfully cliche. More like awesomely cliche. In World of Spacecraft: Extinction you play the role of the last dinosaur, a tyrannosaurus rex who’s out for vengeance on the galaxy. 65 billion years ago a giant asteroid destroyed his home and his people. Now he will stop at nothing to ensure every last being in the universe suffers the same fate!

Our audio team was comprised of me and Burak Karakas. I spent most of Friday and Saturday programming, editing sound effects and writing an introductory music cue. Since time was running out we gave our friend Burak a call and asked him to provide something that was, “Swat Katz meets Guile’s Theme.” The man delivered.

I had more fun than you can imagine implementing the audio for this. Granted, it was buggy as hell by the time the music came in, but not a day after the jam I had everything fixed back up. Here’s a rundown of the audio flow in the game:

  • Intro screen appears with a BOOM! big ole whooshy sound effect
  • Player presses SPACE to start, cue the orchestra! This plays an 8 bar orchestra flourish at about 126bpm (composed and produced by myself), which then accelerates up to a 156bpm drumkit build up as it launches seamlessly into Burak’s looped track.
  • From here you control the angry dino, attempting to fly into planets. As you fly into planets, you hear explosions and crumbling rock as you tear through each planet.
  • You can hold spacebar to boost. This plays a quick booster sound cue and increases the playback volume of the thruster loop while the booster sound plays, making a nice smooth transition.

Funny note about the scream effects: early on the Planet class would calculate a random population for every planet instantiated. Because I had tossed in a quick static class at the beginning of the jam that wrapped up a object (it’s terrible architecture, but statics and globals are great for quick and dirty jams), I was able to hook into a PLANET_HIT event that sent along the planet’s population value as part of the event data. Naturally, I took that population value and mapped it to the playback volume of each scream effect. So, the louder the screams, the more densely populated a planet! Kind of morbid, but hey have you seen this game? It most certainly calls for it.