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The history of the Ludum Dare development contest arguably stretches back to the dawn of game jams.

The inaugural Ludum Dare took place way back in 2002, at the same time as the very term ‘game jam’ began to enter industry parlance. 12 years on and the 30th iteration has just drawn to a close, inspiring a remarkable spread of games.

Ludum Dare 30 saw the creation of 2538 titles, all around the theme of ‘Connected Worlds’. The event, which takes place across the world, was spilt into the newer ‘Jam’ element, which gives teams 72 hours to craft a game, and the original ‘Compo’, that demands a game from a sole developer in 48 hours. Both addressed the same theme.

And now developing has concluded, the votes are in, and the winners are decided, it’s time to look at some of the best entries made using Unity, including Compo winner Superdimensional.

Compo Highlights

Game: Superdimensional
Developer: PixelMind
Position: 1st
Platforms: Web, Windows, Linux
A stark, stylized spin on the puzzle-platformer, Superdimensional only wants you to use your mouse; and it isn’t too keen on the buttons either. In fact, you’ll rarely click or press a single one. Instead, you use the mouse to angle pools of light on the ever-advancing mostly spherical protagonist, exposing it to different parallel dimensions, helping it move through the world by hopping between overlapping realms. ‘Connected Worlds’, if you like. Superdimensional is short, sharp and captivating, and so pretty it’s hard to believe it was made in two days by a single developer.

Superdimensional by PixelMind

Play Superdimensional here.

Hello World
Developer: Rahazan
Position: Joint 6th
Platforms: Web
Hello World is a captivating game of maintaining communication channels between distant planets, seemingly to ensure cat videos are enjoyed on an intergalactic basis. It’s also a tremendously satisfying puzzle game of drawing lines between satellites and radio antenna, and just like Superdimensional, it hit’s the ‘Connected Worlds’ theme with absolute precision.

Hello World by Rahazan

Play Hello World here.

On the Edge of Earth: 5000
Developer: Hypnohustla
Position: Joint 12th
Platforms: Web
On the Edge of Earth: 5000 tells a tale of a lone astronaut deep in space, armed with a huge planet zapping laser. This laser, however, flushes dead planets with life, and the player’s is the task of completing a single mission. Effectively a micro adventure game, Hypnohustla’s game is incredibly polished and well crafted considering the timeframe of its creation, and filled with absurd machines to bewilder and delight.

Edge of Earth: 5000 by Hypnohustla

Play On the Edge of Earth: 5000 here.

I Must See You
Developer: Split82
Position: Joint 15th
Platforms: Web, Linux, Windows
There’s no denying that at a glance I must See You nods to the form of Unity-authored smash Hitman Go. But something is different here, for the player must guide not one, but two entities through an isometric grid puzzler. The twist? If line of site between the two is broken, movement of one is stopped dead. It’s an idea used to great effect, and while fleetingly brief, I Must See You has vast potential to be extended into a fully fledged game.

I Must See You by Split82

Play I Must See You here.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Developer: Andrew Shouldice
Position: Joint 15th
Platforms: Web
A top-down run ‘n’ gun shooter in the classic form, What Could Possibly Go Wrong? tells the tale of a portal to distant worlds created by scientists, that lets creatures from across space and time pour through to Earth. It’s presented in chunky pixel art, and its title really does say it all. Shouldice’s creation is compelling and hilarious in equal parts, and deserves to be remembered long after Ludum Dare 30.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong? by Andrew Shouldice

Play What Could Possibly Go Wrong? here.

Jam Highlights

Game: This Little Piggy
Developer: InfectionTeam
Position: Joint 5th
Platforms: Web, Windows, Mac, Linux
This Little Piggy starts innocently enough, as a first person adventure, the protagonist scouring a small planet for the ingredients for a salad. Then a pig gets slaughtered for one last ingredient; bacon. That death causes a ripple through the dimensions, ringing alarm bell on a distant home world. Suddenly a portal to a opens in the game’s cheerful setting, and heavily armed swines from an alien planet pour through, turning a charming curio into an FPS that is particularly slick for 72 hours’ toil.

This Little Piggy by InfectionTeam

Play This Little Piggy here.

The Legend of Light
Developer: Yword
Position: 8th
Platforms: Web
The Yword team used Unity to create a visually splendid platformer in the 72 hours at their disposable. As well as the ability to leap through portals, The Legend of Light’s hero can alter the levels around it, moving whole sections of platforms and rotating entire areas in a way quite distinct from it’s contemporaries. Proof yet that there’s space for originality in the jostling puzzle-platformer space.

The Legend of Light by Yword

Play The Legend of Light here.

Binary System
Developer: rogueNoodle
Position: 12th
Platforms: Web, Windows, Mac, Linux
There’s a little flavour of arcade icon Asteroids to Binary System. Nothing wrong with that, but there’s plenty more to rogueNoodle’s creation too. It tells a tale of two planets locked in orbit together, tearing through space as one, avoiding impacts and gathering stars. It’s remarkably immediate and simple, and like all of the entries highlighted here, does a fine job with the Ludum Dare 30 theme.

Binary System by rogueNoodle

Play Binary System here.

Developer: TeamEagle
Position: 13th
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux
The universe needs an internet connection, and it appears one ship is equipped with the tools for the job. Connector takes the theme especially literally, and does so with fantastic artwork and particularly robust physics. Never before has untangling Ethernet cables been more rewarding, and never again will installing an internet line attract so much enemy attention.

Connector by Team Eagle

Play Connector here.

Game: Computer – Open That Door!
Developer: pLaw
Position: Joint 21st
Platforms: Web, Windows, Mac, Linux
When a computer gains sentience, it doesn’t what to be shut down; especially by the over-efficient crew of a starship making hurried leaps through space and time. In Computer – Open That Door!, you play just such a programme, and are tasked with killing off your crew by manipulating ship systems before the humans reach their destination, taking out your prey one at a time. pLaw’s creation is certainly funny, but more than that it has surprising depth, and hides a wealth of secrets that are a delight to unravel.

Computer – Open That Door! by pLaw

Play Computer – Open That Door! here.

The above are just some of the numerous brilliant Ludum Dare 30 games. The top 100 Compo creations can be found here, the top 100 Jam games are here, and the full list of all 2538 creations is right here.

Congratulations to all those who took part.

Comments are closed.

  1. Also check out this Ludum Dare game made in unity and using unity’s newest GUI tools.

  2. Very nice games! Hope I will be that kind of developper soon :)

  3. We had also done our LD30 game in Unity if you want to check

  4. all of these games are awesome