Vincent's blog

GNU/Linux, tech and thoughts

The power of constraints

Thanks to the constrains of the Mini Ludum Dare rapid game development competition I was able to write a new game and had to make it match a given theme (Doodles) and finish it within one week. These limits helped me to stay focused on delivering a finished game, or something close to it. I was able to quickly code it in Python, make a few levels and put a little storyline in it. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to add sound and music. Still, it’s already very enjoyable. I plan to continue working on it a bit and release the code as GPL.

The thing is, if I didn’t have these constraints, I wouldn’t be that motivated. Maybe the project would have been expanded over the whole year, and probably never finished.

Also, many video games make use of constraints in gameplay to make themselves interesting to play. A game where you can do anything is rather boring. Still, the constraints must be set up in a way that is interesting and not too frustrating for the player. Same applies in real life.

This experience helped me to learn that constraints are a tool that can be used for good. I’ll try to use these tools to develop more games in the future. 🙂

Comments are currently closed.