Archive for August, 2008

Getting Close

Sunday, August 24th, 2008

Still doin’ the perpetual “one more week”, but I’m close. Very close. :)

If things go according to plan, we’ll be beta next Monday (September 1st). I want to sit on it a couple days and test the crap out of it, just to be sure it’s all good. Then off to Apple by Wednesday-Friday.

I wanted the promo+box art done a couple weeks ago, but I amusingly keep pushing it back. I told myself I’d finish it this weekend, but hey, nope. I’ve got some good sketches, just nothing digital yet.

I’ve done nearly everything reasonable I wanted in the game (with a few little things to slip in this week). I ended up spending a couple days last week making some alternative art. Turned out much better than the original set, which kinda makes me want to go back and redo the original. It’s fine though… Mike, listen! Just leave it! Ship it!

So bare with the vague just a little while longer. ;)

– – – – –

Besides taking some well deserved rest, I suppose I’m torn with what comes next. Immediately following, I’ll have to pull together a proper website and press pack for the game. But after all that, I have the option of diving right in to Project 2, or to spend some time building some tools, libraries, etc.

I have a list of little things I’d have loved to have whilst developing this game, that certainly would come in handy for future games. I suppose I’m in a bit of a tooly mindset right now. That might make a fun blogging project. ;)

– – – – –

Ludum Dare 12’s voting finishes up tonight. I’ll be around for my usual administrative contributions.

Then next week I announce the theme for Mini LD #3, hosted by me. I really hope I can get the game shipped out before Friday (September 5th), so I can at least veg for a day.

Mind you, administrating a compo isn’t that much work (hit a few switches, make some posts, and announce the theme), but still.

You know, I could be vegging. :)

Say Something Insigtful

Sunday, August 17th, 2008

Yikes, it’s a weekend again already! Sunday too! Ack!

Rule of thumb. When Mike says game will be out in a week or two, assume month. Then assume longer.


There’s always the chance that this mysterious iPhone game may destroy my ‘cred’ as a physics guy. Though, I’ve been doing some fun stuff in it to rectify that.

I’ve found several uses for effects based on verlet and spring physics, even though the game lives in a world of tiles. When you can constrain the motion to a single axis, springs and integration really simplifies. Magnitude becomes a mere subtraction, and a spring a mere scalar for the magnitude. Fun stuff.

Just this morning (Saturday) I added something vaguely like a water/pond simulation. A 2D spring system that creates ripples. But it’s actually a collection of 1D springs that influence their neighbors. A proper 2D cloth would break your the perception of things. In the end it’s pure eye candy, but still. :D

It’s stuff like this that makes me wish the GBA wasn’t dead. When restricted to an axis, it’s only a couple subtracts, adds, and multiplies. No square roots to be seen. And for some of the funkier effects (Jello), only a few divides (ARM7’s can’t divide).

Then again, go ahead and stay dead GBA. I’m loving the freedom of having crap-tons of textured quads. :)

Also, these are pretty cool. My brother picked one up from Future Shop, and it took only a couple hours to get my SDL OpenGL PC build working on it’s Linux (was all just figuring out the names of packages that were missing). Just over 2 lbs too! I’m soooo grabbing one once this game ships.

Gamma 3D compo for October, then in November in Montreal. Geez… I really need to start doing semi-local game industry events.

Why do you have to be 2 whole hours away Toronto!? ;)

I guess that’s what Greyhound and Audiobooks are for.

I make games to piss you off

Monday, August 11th, 2008

Slightly off topic today. Well, if you’re expecting mystery iPhone game news that is.

The weekend ended up being a little more slack-tastic that I’d hoped. Ludum Dare 12 after all, which always keeps me busy.

With only a couple hours left, I decided I’d throw something together quickly. Well, those couple hours went very well.

With so little time, I obviously couldn’t make anything extravagant. What I ended up with was a game best described as “a game designed to piss you off“.


Set your speakers to a decent volume, and fire up Towlr.

NOTE: Do not play if you are seizure prone!
It’s short, but the game does flash.

Download: Windows, Linux (32bit), MacOS X (Intel)

Towlr is a puzzle. It can be solved. You will be scored.

Towlr is best experienced by sitting someone down in front of it, telling them to solve it, and letting them figure it out for themselves… which I’ll do here.

You’ll either be amused, or be left dazed/confused and possibly a little angry.

Have fun!

A cruel tease

Saturday, August 2nd, 2008

I must really enjoy being vague.

Three reasons for this. #1, I’m an ass. #2, The art is going through a major (final) overhaul at the moment. #3, I kinda don’t want my loyal viewer to pre-judge the game yet.

So the obvious answer, yes, it’s an iPhone game. Analysis of the mosaic well tell you a few things about the game, but to my credit, it’s not a clone. It’s a few things, but not a clone. Yep! Not a clone. In the unlikely circumstance it is a clone, then I’ve never played the original, and they deserve my praise.

The game is in it’s final stages. “Alpha” would be a good term for it. Feature complete top to bottom, but since I’m working solo, that’s put all the final art production and finishing touches between Alpha and Beta. The bulk of this is menus, which I initially expected (i.e. hoped) would take a week, but it may take a ‘little’ longer.

Ahh the infamous “Next Week + X” gold date.

I’m hoping that I’ll have the promotional artwork ready to show here next weekend. In the mean time, if you want more vague update remarks, you can follow me on Twitter.

You can also catch tease part 2 there, i.e. my theme. And also vaguely learn about other mystery projects in development before this, and some movies I’ve seen. Oooh!

Fun fun.