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7DRL 2019: Aftermath and your experience

A topic by hypnotic created Mar 13, 2019 Views: 269 Replies: 6
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Hi, this year's 7DRL seems to be a huge success looking at all the entries. I am curious about how you as participants found the experience as a whole and how you are experiencing the aftermath? :)

Did you have support from your spouse/partner or was it a selfish labor of love? Are you feeling burnt out or inspired to continue working on your entry? Are you disappointed by anything? Will you be back next year? How did you feel when you successfully submitted or failed to submit your entry? Are you happy with feedback received? etc etc 

I pose this question hoping there will be no shameless plugs, but to get a feeling for how others experienced a game jam like this and the different emotions one has in the run up, duration and aftermath to better understand how peers experience a game jam such as this and what motivates them? I am sure it is very different for all of us?

Sorry if it is a bit off-topic.


It was a good experience! I had support from partners, and it was nice to share it with friends after submitting :) 

It was definitely all-consuming though. I definitely am taking a bit of a break. This was less than a month after another game jam I completed, but I saw it was coming up and had always wanted to do a 7DRL so in spite of worrying I'd burn myself out, I did it anyway.  It was a good experience, but I'm fatigued; No more game jams for me for at least a month or two!!

I'm really proud of how my game turned out. As much as I love Roguelikes I'm, uh, not actually that good at them, so doing a full 26 level playthrough of mine didn't happen before the deadline. I've since played through my own game a few times and there's a list of things I would want to polish but I'm otherwise really happy with it!!

I definitely want to participate next year. I already have an idea I want to try that would be appropriate (though a year is a long time to sit on it; I might just do it before then)


I see your most supportive partner is sitting right there in your profile pic :D I luckily had  great support too.

I also felt the burn of crunch time. This week at work is not very productive, I hope my boss understands LOL.

It's an amazing exhilarating feeling to compete in a jam like this, but  I feel drained and will take some time away from the PC and go do something analog, like playing with rocks on the beachfront this weekend... :)


This was my first game jam (and my first game, in fact). I chose to participate to 7DRL for two reasons:

1) a game jam is, in my opinion, the best moment to try an idea and get feedback. I wanted something short; I didn't want to get into a ambitious game that I would give up a month later.

2) I love roguelikes. In fact, I beat NetHack for the first time a few months ago and that's when I started thinking about making my own game. And for a dev newbie like me, they are the easiest genre: no need for graphical art (ASCII is fine), there are libraries and tutorials (thanks python-tcod and!), random generation means little level design… It's a genre that puts mechanics above all else.

I was encouraged by my friends and I got some feedback during the week (mostly "It's too hard!"). I worked about 55 hours on the game during the jam (I was on vacation at that time). It was a busy week but I'm not exhausted.

It was a very positive experience for me and I will probably make more games in the future!


Did you have support from your spouse/partner or was it a selfish labor of love?

Well, yes, she was in full support and was ready to take up the slack to let me focus, but then she inconsiderately decided to hurt herself pretty bad, requiring a trip to the ER right in the middle of the 7DRL, while trying to keep the kids calm.  Turns out that's bad for productivity, so next year, I'm going to ask her to schedule some other time for her frightening accidents.  (She's fine now.)

Are you feeling burnt out or inspired to continue working on your entry?

One technical challenge I put myself to was to make my roguelike screen reader friendly, so that I could apply what I learned in my day job.  So, yes, I think it's safe to say I'm going to continue working on at least the technology behind my entry.  As for the entry itself, yes, I'd like to flesh it out even more – due to the ER visit, I had several plans for features that didn't make it in, and of course it needs some tighter balancing.

Are you disappointed by anything?

The main thing I'm disappointed by is the fact that I didn't get some actual drawn art in for the cards in the game.  I was hoping to spend the last day or two of the 7DRL drawing some cool cards, since the card combat is a big part of the game.  Instead, I just have round rects with only words on them.  It works, but it's not nearly as satisfying as what I envisioned.

Will you be back next year?

Heck yeah!  I've been doing this for many years now, and it's always fun to experiment with new ideas and see what cool things other participants come up with.  (I particularly like Pinball Dungeon and Forward from this year's offerings.)

Are you happy with feedback received?

Well, so far people seem to like it, which is always gratifying, but what I was really hoping to get was some feedback on the manner in which I structured the game to work with screen readers from a person who regularly uses a screen reader other than VoiceOver, which is the screen reader I did my own testing with.  I have no idea whether what I did was useful, pleasant, workable, or desirable for people who primarily use screen readers, and I was hoping to get some feedback on that side of things.  In testing with VoiceOver, the game feels very playable, but not being a screen reader user normally myself, I don't know what I'd be missing or failing to consider.  Hopefully, it's perfect and people like it.  But if not, I can't fix it until I hear what I got wrong.

For me it was a great experience! 

I totally agree that roguelikes are the perfect genre to develop your own games in. Having a game with ASCII-graphics is absolutely accepted by the awesome community and the procedural content helps a lot to make a game enjoyable by the developer himself.

It was my first game jam and even the first time I created my own game. I used this week to learn new techniques such as JavaScript, rot.js and GitHub, so it was a very intense week for me. But for now I have enough of coding and also enough of my own game which I tested a lot during the week.

What really thrilled me was the first comment I got for my game. It is such a good feeling if someone else says that he enjoyed your game. 

So I decided to give this good feeling to others too. During the last days I played a lot of the other entries and commented things I liked about these games. I learned that most of them are really fun if you just give them a try!


I do not feel burnt out and will try to continue working on my entry, at least to fix some grammar errors and have the annual overview display the number of years you have played. Unfortunately, I fear I will not find the time to do that, as I work on several other, bigger projects :( . I also wanted to complete Felines, my entry from 2018.

My problem is that as a teacher I cannot simply take some time off; this year there was a lucky coincidence that matched the 7DRL to a single week of holidays, so I could get some things done in time! I will nonetheless try to be back next year, but can't promise. I am disappointed of myself that I didn't manage to translate the entire Python TCOD tutorial to C++ before the contest started; that would have saved me a day. I lost another day with programming village generation as I originally planned to have you trade your agricultural surplus for profit that counts in the end. I finally removed the entire idea of friendly NPCs from the game... I am also a bit disappointed with my own hesitation to use scripting languages - I want my program to be nice and small and so always use some compiled language; C++ and its nasty dangling pointer traps really slows you down!

I felt great relief when I had finally submitted my entry; it was much different from last year, where I knew already that it was incomplete. Up to now there was little feedback; I hope the reason is not that many people hesitate to write negative feedback or suggestions down!

But all in all, I had much fun!