is a tri-annual challenge to program a game (essentially from scratch) in 48 hours.
Ludum Dare Competition rules are stricter than the Jam rules. This is to encourage a fairer playing field for participants. The core rules are:
- You must work alone (solo).
- All game code and content must be created within the 48 hours. **
- Games must be based on the theme.
- All libraries, middleware, content creation, and development tools are allowed.
- Source code must be included.
Special Competition Exemptions **
- Base code and personal code libraries are allowed, but should be declared and shared with the community prior to beginning your entry. To do this, make a blog post.
- Photos and recordings you make of people or things are acceptable content, just you must acquire them during the competition.
- Fonts, drum loops, drum samples, and sampled instruments are allowed IF you have the legal right to use them.
- Content generators are allowed. In fact, you are encouraged to create them and share them with the community. sfxr, the extremely popular sound effect generator was originally created for Ludum Dare. It has since gone on to be used in many indie and commercial games.
- A logo/intro screen you use on all your works is allowed (e.g. “by Super-Great Productions”).
- By special request, post Ludum Dare 18, we will allow the use of the Wilhelm Scream, one of the oldest memes in television, movies and games. Sound files can be found on Archive.org. *NEW*
- Porting (especially to Windows) can happen after the initial 48 hours. The longer you wait though, the less of a chance other participants will have to play your game.
There is also "The Jam" which is a more relaxed version of the Challenge.
In October, however, a friendly challenge from one member to the others in the IRC channel takes things to the next level. The goal is simple
: Make a game, take it to market, and sell at least 1 copy by the end of October to succeed.
More details on the October challenge