Published: Mar 28 2008 / 21:27
Looks like a cool competition, and I appreciate the challenge to make something useful in such a tight space. We'd love to have an article about this at Javalobby!
I wrote the game fuzetsu (2006) which came in 5th (out of 55). The key is to write really ugly code. One class, no inner classes etc. If possible no additional files, because each one adds about 140 bytes of overhead. My game for example consisted of a constructor and processEvents... that's it. The coords and deltas for each bullet were stored in Rectangle2D objects (x=x, y=y, w=dx, h=dy), because a custom class would have been too expensive.
Other than that it's a matter of experimentation and well, you need a battery of obfuscators and compression tools. The ones I used were Jarg, ProGuard, and Joga. For compression bjwflate (DeflOpt nowadays), kzip and zipmix.
Cramming in as much as possible is by far the most time consuming aspect, but it's sort of fun (and sort of frustrating heh).
By the way it's an annual event. The first one was back in 2001 if I remember correctly. The entries became more impressive with each iteration.
Nowadays the forums are over at JGO:
Some of the games are absolutely amazing. I mean, a clone of zarch (3d archimedes game originally by david braben of elite fame) in under 4k??!! it's quite playable too -- full 3d camera effects and the particle exploding effects. i just didn't realise it was possible to do something like that in that sort of space. I'm not easily amazed but that's incredible.
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