Yaay Death and Stuff

So while it’s only 2 new tasks complete, there’s 2 more that are 80% there and others are planned out.

Here’s a recap of new stuff:

  • PCs and monsters now shoot and damage each other with functioning ranged combat!
  • PCs can die!
  • Monsters can die!
  • Monster spawner behavior is 90% there
  • PC equip-able items / attacks are close to being there.
  • New portraits are almost done.. then we’ll have 3 different PCs
  • Project title finally announced:

And Here’s a new Screenshot showing some of the things that you can see:

Three Days

Three days.  That’s not a whole lot of time left.

The list of cut features is growing on a daily basis, and new incidental bonus things are beginning to crop up.

New Stuff:

  • Music!  makes a world of difference
  • New website area and working Facebook integration
  • 4 final levels (6 more in development)
  • new backend tools for tweaking text wrapping issues
  • new bolt particles and images and tweaked effects
  • improved dialog for failure 🙁
The Must Get Done List:
  • more levels
  • three tutorial dialogs (timing, prisms, advanced prisms)
  • signed jar
  • button noise issue
  • success dialog and information dialog images
The Would be Really Nice To Have List:
  • the final enchant tick fix
  • collision enchantment graphics
  • better /more sounds
  • Mac applet support (pc only for now )
  • emitter hover path highlighting and count to impact for making adjusting timing much much easier.
The Not Gonna Happen List:
  • Loading Objective images from site instead of in jar
  • Standalone App
  • Further FB sharing & Integration for wall posts.
  • Many more levels
  • More placeable types (triggers etc)
  • better level editor that lets me edit saved levels.

EnchantingUpdate

Not as much progress as I’d like, or on the bits that I’d like.. but that’s kinda how it works 🙂

Here’s the Screenshot and some more sordid details below.

Highlights of the week are:

  • Applet integration started.. The basic functionality now works in a web page
  • Mirrors  (and indeed all placeables) now ask and respond properly to queries about their facing
  • Lots of new particle effects on Magical bolts (trust me they look way better in action)
  • This lead to some serious stuttering issues when creating all the bolts.  This has been fixed by creating all the bolt objects at level init and just flagging them as no update / no render.

The big issues to tackle:

  • Java to Javascript to Java communication.  Because I really want to be able to send data from the database / facebook requests directly into the game.
  • An update glitch that causes bolts to not register hits with mirrors.  The solution to this is to just skip the ‘per pixel’ detection stuff and have the bolts just run a check against the game Board’s entity mapping table and see if the bolt is going to hit something and then find out if it needs to change it’s offset and direction or magic power type.     This is a bit of work, but the initial stuff is really just taking too many calls and calcultaions to be done if I want it to start checking for positions in between update calls.

Screenshot Tuesday

Ok, so last Screenshot Saturday slipped by in a haze of yardwork, cleaning and taking the baby shopping at Ikea and other general domestic goodness.

But better late than never, eh?   So here it is:

Enchanting Cadence Screenshot - week 2

Yeah.. Looks a lot like the last one, right?

Well, so it’s all still placeholder 20 second photoshop art, but here’s the rundown of the basic stuff that now works.

  • Magical Emitters exist.
  • Everything has a facing direction and is aware of it.
  • Emitters can shoot MagicBolts.
  • Magic bolts can bounce around off of mirrors.
  • Things are a bit more objectified and things like placeable and object manager entities are starting to do the stuff they need to do.
  • The game is either in editing mode, or enchanting mode (ie when  you get to watch things either work or not)
Next up:
There’s a couple consulting tasks to wrap up in the next week or so hopefully so that’s going to take a bit of the dev time But here’s what I’d like to have working for next screenshot saturday.
  • Be able to rotate mirrors in edit mode. (right now it’s hardcoded)
  • Have functioning Splitters
  • Get a basic enchantable object that can start to track its requirements for success
  • Get Energy changers put in place
  • Have bolts die if they leave the board.
Overall I’m happy with the progress  however I can easily see how all my plans are going to mean the 2 month deadline for the Slick contest is going to be tight.

Work Work and new hobbies

So here we are once again.  Another couple of weeks gone and the list of things I’d hoped to get to and deadlines for my pet projects are but fading memories.

Remember that ‘SUPER PRODUCTIVE MEGA AWESOME WEEK?!!” a couple weeks ago?

Well it turned into 2 days of productive (freelance work and 6 sheep done, not bad) 1 day of errands and chores, a day of packing an dinner with the parentals for doggie sitting and then I was off to see GFW, Parkzilla and Baby J at the other grandparent’s for the weekend.  So yeah.. not so productive.

However, let’s not dwell since it was an awesome relaxing de-wired weekend and thus worth it.

Wenderflonia.com Business Card

So since then.. Freelance stuff picked up speed and culminated in a long work full weekend this weekend, but I’m almost caught up 🙂

But (and this is the exciting bits!) I’ve fallen in love with Oil Paints (the water soluble oils, for the ease of cleanup and fumes)   So below are some pic of the second piece in progress, and I have plans to do a collaborative piece with GFW, which should be interesting.

So the theory is, I want to be working on around 3 pieces at a time,

One in polishing phase:

The Polishing Phase Just Started

One in the ‘ugly’ mid stage:

Deep in the ugly stage

and one at the beginning roughing, concept stage.

[No pics yet]

And here’s some pics for posterity’s  sake.

Super Productive Week – day 1

Super Productive Project Week is on!

So I’ve got the house to myself while GFW and Co. are out visiting grandma in Merkel.  Which means it’s a rare opportunity to listen to loud music till the odd hours of the night and work on All those things that I’ve been meaning to get done.

But, first things first.  Today was wrapping up some consulting for Kell. And also getting an awesome start on the Jones Communications website / CMS re-design.    After today I’ve got the element layout of the site in place so tomorrow I can focus on getting the content styling in place, and then gradually flesh out the pages and programmatic requirements of the site.

Additionally in order to further my adventures with water soluble oil paints, I’ve decided to start a second piece while working on the first.  Its a significantly larger size (14″x18″) But I’ve got plans for attempting something resembling a portrait… But the texture of the canvas in the first piece has become a hindrance so this new piece I’m starting out by layering many coats of gesso and then once dry, sand it back to a smoother surface.  Hopefully the texture will help my control of the paint. So tonight has been spent putting down 4 coats so far and hopefully one more before bedtime, and then allow it to dry fully overnight.

So the theory goes the remainder of the week will be a couple hours of website work, followed by some sheep illustrating  intermingled with breaks  on the paintings.    It might all be too much to do but hey.. its summer vacation and I can sleep in til 7:20 now 🙂

Old Wars and Putting the Sheep in Gear

Well summertime is here and that means it is time to kick things off and do stuff.

No Really..

I’ve been pretty stuck in idle for a while but a couple little things have started getting some traction.  Granted the freelance design work has been pleasantly steady which helps alleviate the guilt. 🙂   But really there’s been two projects that have gotten me going again. (ok, that and the baby finally deciding on a sleep schedule so there’s actually a couple hours that are useful on a regular basis doesn’t hurt either)

First http://www.beautifulbasics.com is up and running. It is still in its infancy but between me and GFW (whose site recently good a lovely makeover) we’re hoping that it will grow into a thriving community about family,tradition, and living a simple healthy lifestyle.

Second, I finally cracked open my tubes of winsor newton water soluble oil paints, they dry like oils but you can thin em with water instead of turp. It is a nice change from the usual acrylics and I absolutely love the drying time. The only downside so far is the color change while the water evaporates is going to take some getting used to. So the paint seems to dry in two stages, first the water evaporates leaving the darker pure oil color behind, which then takes the usual few days to dry.  Oh, and the cleanup with soap n water is a snap and the fumes are nowhere near as bad as old fashioned oils.

Distractions and Games? I’ve got plenty, but primarily playing Red Dead Revolver on the 360 and the indie strategy game ‘Hegemony, Phillip of Macedon‘ are tying up most of my mental breaks.  That and I’ve got to get a full day to get some people together and play a full game of Arkham Horror.  I will say that the Hegemony game is a wonderful new addiction.  It’s an absolutely massive undertaking for a small indie game company to make.  While it’s got some clunky features, it more than makes up for it in innovative new features that are sure to be copied by everyone else (Total War guys I’m looking at you) .  Unlike a lot of other Real-time Strategy games there is an emphasis on maintaining supply to you cities and units on the march that makes for a good time.

So, how does this lead me to getting my backside in gear and get cracking on the damn sheep you ask?

As luck would have it, GFW is taking the kids and heading west for a week come this Friday.  That’s going to leave me with a lot of downtime and I’ve got plans to make the best of it.

In theory, a bud will be coming by for some programmy consultanty help and if that happens that’s cool and that will probably take a couple hours every day but hey money talks 😉

Other than that I’m attending Akon (as a guest this year) Saturday; building an initial pass at a joomla website for a client; and designing a 1 page sheet, hopefully all this weekend.
So in theory, that leaves many hours are available every night next week for some serious sheepage! Oh, and I plan on blogging more (daily?) updates.

Let’s see how things work out, but hopefully there will be a ton of progress to report very very very soon.

Incubation And Spreadsheets

State of the Sheep

So after a couple days of taking a look at all the assets I feel like I’ve got a good grasp of where things stand in Mutant Sheep Eat the Planet!

In Short..

Cards Drawn 75 remaining 50 total cards: 125

Painted 62,remaining 63 ready to paint 13

Placed 60 remaining 65 ready to place into deck 2 (this is a short and easy step but it’s important which is why I track it)

So that’s not so bad.  Only 50 illustrations left and then 63 color jobs.   Granted the biggest hurdle is that I no longer have a scanner and the whole ‘transition to an all digital pipeline’ just doesn’t seem to be happening.   So I bought a scanner and it’ll be here in a couple days.

In the meanwhile I’ve started revising some basic rules, and updating the text on the cards so as to get mystelf start thinking about the rules etc and balance.  Hopefully I can make edits to the cards while watching baby Jude perform his nightly antics.. So a new round of playtesting will  be in the immediate/near future.

Then there’s a couple other steps for the cards, proofreading, final alignment, etc but those are what I’ll make friends n Family do 😉

Other Projects that Eat Time

Irismel.com

Ok so this is currently a formative tech demo.  But the thought of a multiplayer online web based rougelike with a live DM has been percolating around in the back of my mind forever.  So when I needed to figure out jQueryUI standards I whipped together the beginning’s of a web based map editor.  The downside..It more or less kills IE.. something about absolute positioning 5,000 32×32 divs makes it crawl.   But I’ve got some ideas to improve performance drastically.    Oh and what’s already up at Irismel.com is my first level editor for Blood Soaked Deadly Dungeons of Doom! But Irismel is a project that’s growing out of research projects not a driver for research, which is why I’m looking to use CakePHP for the foundation, because it’s something I want to learn.

Template Driven Microsites

The project that’s primarily eating away from SheepTime(tm) is an easy to edit microsite development tool.  That’s all I’m saying for now.. but it’s pretty cool and easy to use and has the potential to actually ‘Earn Real Money’.

Freelance Work

Yup just a trickle at the moment, but at least one item in the immediate future.

Misc Gaming News

So the Christmas Deluge has come and gone and it was good.

The highlight was clearly Dragon Age, easily the best game of last year.

Currently playing Mass Effect 2.. and it’s absolutely spectacular, also playing some Sins of a Solar Empire : Diplomacy for the strategy fix.. and it’s good and a handful of tiny Indie & Casual games that are just lots of fun (Trine, AI War, Soliumn Infernum, Boowork Adv 2 etc.)

The top 3 acquisitions that I’d like to make that just came out in the Spring Bonanza are: Bad Company 2.. Multiplayer shootem fun, Final Fantasy XIII for the jRPG fix and Settlers 7 for the build a world fix.. except it’s covered in UBI’s super evil DRM so it’s getting a pass until they come to their senses.  But really I’ll probably just go and play more Arma2 and Witcher and Empire: Total War.

Mapmaking tools

Ok so pretty good weekend.  I decided to have the main game dungeon created from larger macro tiles. so instead of having to come up with a super complex dungeon generator, all I’ll need to do is to have an algorithem that just connects the larger tiles together.  

So Friday and Saturday morning I sat down and wrote this

It’s essentially a tile based map editor.  It doesn’t have any real fun features such as checking the validity of the map or verifying that the only open tiles on the outer edge are by the designated exit area.  

Spent some time Sunday getting the data exported from the page into the Torque Game Builder engine, which wasn’t hard at all.  So the game now can render macro tiles.  Problem is that the collisions don’t seem to be working properly.. so that’s the next task.