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  Fewer games due to...  (Read 10513 times)
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Offline appel

JGO Wizard


Medals: 69
Projects: 4


I always win!


« Posted 2010-01-22 15:04:12 »

Many good games submitted so far, but fewer than last year. 37 games last year compared to 17 games this year, for the same timeframe. But note, in 2008 we only had 21 games, so we've had few games before, so it's not like the sky is falling  Grin Besides, last year the 4k contest was abnormally popular.

But I've been wondering about this years decline, if it has something to do with the fact programmers have more bytes to squeeze out due to pack200, so they're taking more time to work on each of their game (I know many good games are in development)? Or is it because they dislike applets? Or just many taking a break this year? Contest not properly advertised (got a lot of publicity last year)? Or probably a mixture of all?

So, let's discuss Smiley We cannot fix something if we don't know what is broken. Hopefully we, or I, can do things better next year.

Check out the 4K competition @ www.java4k.com
Check out GAMADU (my own site) @ http://gamadu.com/
Offline SimonH
« Reply #1 - Posted 2010-01-22 15:10:13 »

Well, I did get a slap on the wrist for doing so many last year! If I get a chance I'd like to do another...
Besides we're only half-way through, if we get another 17 then that's 34, the same(ish) as last year!

People make games and games make people
Offline Abuse

JGO Knight


Medals: 15


falling into the abyss of reality


« Reply #2 - Posted 2010-01-22 15:45:42 »

I broke my mobo. last week (remounting the heatsinks) and am struggling to find a replacement  Roll Eyes

Gawd that sounds like a high school 'sorry I forgot my homework' excuse  Grin

So anyhow looks like i'll be a busy bee in Feb.
It is going on for 3 months this time? right??

:edit:

Ofcourse it could be the snow/recession/global warming that's effecting participation levels...

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Offline appel

JGO Wizard


Medals: 69
Projects: 4


I always win!


« Reply #3 - Posted 2010-01-22 16:01:12 »

Dog ate my floppies  Roll Eyes  Grin

Check out the 4K competition @ www.java4k.com
Check out GAMADU (my own site) @ http://gamadu.com/
Offline CaptainJester

JGO Knight


Medals: 12
Projects: 2
Exp: 14 years


Make it work; make it better.


« Reply #4 - Posted 2010-01-22 16:10:08 »

I usually get a couple in, but I have been so busy this year I haven't had time.  February might be a bit quieter so I am still going to try and get one in.

Offline steveyO
« Reply #5 - Posted 2010-01-22 16:37:16 »

Only ever done 2. One last year and one this year.  Am planning on another one this year (graphics done, just gameplay when get round to it, got sidetracked).  Personally I prefer the applet only option, and dislike the pack200 (not as challenging as last year for sure, which has taken away the edge a little).  However, thats just me,  still fun like last year tho, so not sure reasons for decline. 

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bullsquared.alggame Annoying Little Gits (Android)
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Offline Markus_Persson

JGO Wizard


Medals: 16
Projects: 19


Mojang Specifications


« Reply #6 - Posted 2010-01-22 17:44:07 »

I'm going to try to submit two years this year. =)

For me, a big reason for the decline in productivity is obviously Minecraft.

Play Minecraft!
Offline Alan_W

JGO Knight


Medals: 8
Projects: 3


Java tames rock!


« Reply #7 - Posted 2010-01-22 19:09:12 »

Maybe the combination of applets & pack200 make it harder, or perhaps the recession is making folks concentrate on holding down their day jobs.  Personally (even though I've submitted two games), I'm missing the motivation of one of Markus' masterpieces to spur me on.  Simon's GTA4k has gone a long way to fill the hole though.  Grin

I've quite enjoyed writing Applets.  Pack200 has been a bit of a mixed blessing.  Ok, I've gained about 500bytes, but then so has everyone else.  Testing pack200 requires a properly configured server, which is a pain.

Time flies like a bird. Fruit flies like a banana.
Offline StephR

Senior Devvie


Medals: 9



« Reply #8 - Posted 2010-01-22 19:33:34 »

Here are my guesses :
- the pack200 extending possibilities as well as the applet only option, as already said, which will lead people to take more time to develop their games, and may have frightened a very few ones ;
- the big advertisement that Left 4K Dead was last year, and which has no real equivalent this year ;
- the Marcus P. discouraging effect, with his previous entries as well as the two coming ones in 2010, including a certainly incredible 3D game ;
- the global financial crisis, as some programmers may have less free time because they have to work more in order to avoid unemployment...

By late february, I hope I will be able to add my own 2010 entry, and I guess many people will do the same. In the end, I would bet on at least 40 entries this year, which would be very honourable.
Offline StephR

Senior Devvie


Medals: 9



« Reply #9 - Posted 2010-01-22 19:55:38 »

Well, when I wrote that the big advertisement that Left 4K Dead was last year, had no real equivalent this year, I meant that no 2010 game has been reported so far on other gaming websites, as Left 4K Dead was. I certainly didn't want to criticize the quality of the games of this year, most of them being very good too !
Games published by our own members! Check 'em out!
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Offline woogley
« Reply #10 - Posted 2010-01-22 20:14:47 »

I would ignore all factors outside of the viral marketing. Last year, left 4k dead was covered by reddit, digg, jayisgames, etc etc.

I'd have to verify my logs to be sure, but I'm fairly certain the "big" years we had when I was hosting the 4K were the same years we were covered by slashdot and digg.

@appel, I'd suggest you compare your data to see how many games were submitted last year by those who had never submitted in past years; this may be indication of new participation as a result of the online coverage.
Offline SquashMonster

Senior Devvie


Medals: 1
Projects: 2



« Reply #11 - Posted 2010-01-22 20:54:29 »

I have a second game, but I was planning on not finishing/submitting it until the last minute.  When's the deadline again?
Offline moogie

JGO Ninja


Medals: 15
Projects: 6
Exp: 10 years


Java games rock!


« Reply #12 - Posted 2010-01-22 21:07:34 »

I know my skills at making games are no where near those such as markus et al Smiley but that is not why i join the competition.... However for new comers and beginners (which i think java 4k is ideal as they can get the accomplishment of actually finishing a game!) they may be scared off by the quality of the leading entries.

May be there should be a new comers league where first timers to the competition can get judged against other first timers?

I personally do not like applets or jws for that matter Tongue I like the simplicity of deployment and use of executable jars Tongue By mandating applets it makes full screen games out of the question as well as buffer strategy. I do not think that it is a major turn off from entering.

I am a big advocate for Pack200. The competition is about games yes, however you cannot ignore the size shrinking component of the process to create an entry. As the games quality increase each year, so does the ability to fit more into 4096 bytes. And some, like myself, take perverse pleasure from getting those extra few bytes Smiley

I agree with the general sentiment that the quantity of games will reduce per person due to the extra bytes afforded by pack200 but in general the quality/scope of the games will increase.

Work will always get priority... so those in precarious situations will obviously favor their energies into maintaining employment...


 

Java4k RIP 2014
Offline StephR

Senior Devvie


Medals: 9



« Reply #13 - Posted 2010-01-22 21:09:36 »

I have a second game, but I was planning on not finishing/submitting it until the last minute.  When's the deadline again?
You still have time, if we believe the Java4K website :
http://www.java4k.com/index.php?action=view&page=rulesjudg
"The Java4K 2010 submission period spans from December 1st 2009 and ends February 28th 2010."
Offline SimonH
« Reply #14 - Posted 2010-01-22 21:16:53 »

May be there should be a new comers league where first timers to the competition can get judged against other first timers?
+1

People make games and games make people
Offline Eli Delventhal

JGO Kernel


Medals: 42
Projects: 11
Exp: 10 years


Game Engineer


« Reply #15 - Posted 2010-01-23 03:06:42 »

I've been so busy my bottom is exploding. I really want to get one or two games in.

We are literally releasing our game tonight (in mere minutes!), so my free time will jump up! I can at least put Spoo4k up again with a bunch of levels. I had a great idea for another game and then I forgot it. Cheesy

See my work:
OTC Software
Offline zammbi

JGO Coder


Medals: 4



« Reply #16 - Posted 2010-01-23 03:38:55 »

Well I just did a little advertising myself. That may help a little. Well at least on the playing side  Tongue

Current project - Rename and Sort
Offline StephR

Senior Devvie


Medals: 9



« Reply #17 - Posted 2010-01-23 08:50:15 »

Demonpants ! Your message reminds me of the interesting JGO Comp 2009 ( see here for details : http://www.java-gaming.org/boards/jgo-comp-2009/62/view.html ) you organized last summer, and which definitely lacked some publicity... By the way, will there be a JGO Comp 2010 ?
Offline pjt33
« Reply #18 - Posted 2010-01-23 09:53:21 »

I've submitted as many as I did last year and I'm working on a second. Not sure whether I'll find time to finish it though, because I have my parents visiting me for a week, and my sister for another week, and some reading to do to prepare for starting a new job.
Offline Eli Delventhal

JGO Kernel


Medals: 42
Projects: 11
Exp: 10 years


Game Engineer


« Reply #19 - Posted 2010-01-23 17:07:20 »

Demonpants ! Your message reminds me of the interesting JGO Comp 2009 ( see here for details : http://www.java-gaming.org/boards/jgo-comp-2009/62/view.html ) you organized last summer, and which definitely lacked some publicity... By the way, will there be a JGO Comp 2010 ?
Haha. Did it remind you because I said I was going to release a game so was busy? Yes, I've been told we were going to release this since June, and I've been working off and on in crunch mode since then. But it is actually in the app store right now. Well, it's waiting to be accepted, so it'll be there in a few days. I get Monday off - maybe I will try to bust out a 4k game during the day. Probably not, though, given that I just want to sit around and do nothing at this point. Cheesy

As for JGO Comp, yeah I'd love to get another one going. I was thinking this year I'd buy a domain and give it some simple hosting and the like to try to give it some more exposure. I guess I could write a voting system too so that the player isn't forced to have a JGO account. But that's all a few months down the road, as I don't want to tread on any other contests. Smiley

See my work:
OTC Software
Offline hclower

Junior Devvie


Projects: 2



« Reply #20 - Posted 2010-01-23 18:17:14 »

I haven't entered this contest for the last couple years, but I've just recently decided to give it another try and haven't submitted anything yet. Smiley

- HC
Offline StephR

Senior Devvie


Medals: 9



« Reply #21 - Posted 2010-01-24 09:47:21 »

Haha. Did it remind you because I said I was going to release a game so was busy? Yes, I've been told we were going to release this since June, and I've been working off and on in crunch mode since then. But it is actually in the app store right now. Well, it's waiting to be accepted, so it'll be there in a few days. I get Monday off - maybe I will try to bust out a 4k game during the day. Probably not, though, given that I just want to sit around and do nothing at this point. Cheesy
Well, I feel very busy with just one simple game to make, so I suppose we really don't play in the same court, considering all your projects ! And could you give us a few details about your close-to-release iPhone game ? Actually I didn't find any information about it on your Over-The-Counter website... And my question is not totally off-topic, as this is another advertisement issue !

As for JGO Comp, yeah I'd love to get another one going. I was thinking this year I'd buy a domain and give it some simple hosting and the like to try to give it some more exposure. I guess I could write a voting system too so that the player isn't forced to have a JGO account. But that's all a few months down the road, as I don't want to tread on any other contests. Smiley
The JGO Comp 2009 organization was not bad at all ! Once more, it just lacked some publicity, as it seems many people discovered its existence some time after it ended. And even if the 60 hours limit for this competition is crazy ( I mean, for me ! ), I hope I will be able to give it a try if there is another one organized this year.
Offline Eli Delventhal

JGO Kernel


Medals: 42
Projects: 11
Exp: 10 years


Game Engineer


« Reply #22 - Posted 2010-01-24 20:56:16 »

Well, I feel very busy with just one simple game to make, so I suppose we really don't play in the same court, considering all your projects ! And could you give us a few details about your close-to-release iPhone game ? Actually I didn't find any information about it on your Over-The-Counter website... And my question is not totally off-topic, as this is another advertisement issue !
The JGO Comp 2009 organization was not bad at all ! Once more, it just lacked some publicity, as it seems many people discovered its existence some time after it ended. And even if the 60 hours limit for this competition is crazy ( I mean, for me ! ), I hope I will be able to give it a try if there is another one organized this year.
Don't worry, once Apple has accepted it I will plaster the Off Topic section with details.

In the meantime, here is a screenshot. Smiley


See my work:
OTC Software
Offline Ranger
« Reply #23 - Posted 2010-01-24 21:09:47 »

Pushing myself on a more challenging game this year and still working on it.

Applets are good.  Pack200 is a bit of a pain just because I don't have a server set up to test.  Don't suppose there is a server out there somewhere that we can use for testing?
Offline kappa
« League of Dukes »

JGO Kernel


Medals: 81
Projects: 15


★★★★★


« Reply #24 - Posted 2010-01-24 21:17:14 »

Pushing myself on a more challenging game this year and still working on it.

Applets are good.  Pack200 is a bit of a pain just because I don't have a server set up to test.  Don't suppose there is a server out there somewhere that we can use for testing?

you don't need a server to test pack200, just use the following parameter

<param name="java_arguments" value="-Djnlp.packEnabled=true"/>

and you can test locally without needing a server (only requirement is you must have java 6+)
Offline Ranger
« Reply #25 - Posted 2010-01-25 03:07:30 »

you don't need a server to test pack200, just use the following parameter

<param name="java_arguments" value="-Djnlp.packEnabled=true"/>

and you can test locally without needing a server (only requirement is you must have java 6+)

Awesome!  Thanks Kapta!  Pack200 back in the good books.  Cheesy
Offline icza

Junior Devvie


Projects: 2



« Reply #26 - Posted 2010-01-25 06:54:23 »

I personally like the applet concept. It's easier and safer to test others' games, and also gives us some extra bytes imo.

And as others have said Pack200 gives us an amount of extra bytes that really makes it worth working on it a lot more.

This is my first year, and I like that it is applet and we can use pack200. I've submitted one game so far, and I'm working on my 2nd (I'm sure it will be completed).
Offline Bonbon-Chan

JGO Coder


Medals: 12



« Reply #27 - Posted 2010-01-25 08:18:51 »

I didn't submit my game yet (more works than last year...).
Pack200 is far more a problem for me than the applet only. Not that there is mush difference, but it  was a "late" change of rules  Undecided. I didn't plan it and it changes a lot of thinks on what I can do... so it has droped a few my interest in the contest.
Nevertheless I will try to finish my game  (it will not be well polished as usual  Grin).
Offline pjt33
« Reply #28 - Posted 2010-01-25 10:31:27 »

Pushing myself on a more challenging game this year and still working on it.

Applets are good.  Pack200 is a bit of a pain just because I don't have a server set up to test.  Don't suppose there is a server out there somewhere that we can use for testing?
If anyone wants the source for the basic server I wrote in order to do local testing, drop me a PM.
Offline zeroone
« Reply #29 - Posted 2010-01-25 16:58:55 »

As for me, I have no submissions because I got distracted by Kev's Slick API.  Also, the judging still sucks after all these years.  Maybe the judges should collaborate while judging.  It could be done in a series of public elimination rounds in which the judges debate who stays and who goes.  Then they can rank the remaining 5.  That process would certainly be more entertaining.
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