js13k competition practice, part 1 of 12: research and building a grid world

2019-04-10 Nick Larsen

Just got back from vacation and it was amazing. Feeling very re-energized and ready to start a new project.

I got started with programming like a lot of other people, wanting to make games to play. I have built some toy games at various points throughout my life and decided that once I graduate from grad school I want to commit to making an actual game that I release to the world. Before that I'd like to practice, and so I was reminded of a small competition called js13k.

The point of js13k is to build a complete game based on a theme that runs in a browser, from scratch, in one month. And the kicker, all of the games assets must be no larger than 13 kb when zipped up. There have been some astonishing works of art that have come from this competition; take some time and browse through the winners of previous years competitions.

I decided that I will enter this competition in 2019, which starts August 13th, 2019, and now is as great a time as any to practice. I stream 3 days per week and for roughly 2 hours a day, so total I should be able to get around 24 hours into this game.

In this first episode, I break down how I prepare for competitions like these, decide some high level ideas about the game and get started implementing a simple grid world which is going to be the basis for the world that my game will take place in.