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Blog
  18th February, 2010
When I first started to think of "A game that uses Badges" the name "Dungeon Badges" stuck in my head, and slowly but surely evolved into Dungeon Badgers.
Over the course of the week (during which I was finishing off Centipong 2) the idea had evolved to include a garden, a house, a cat, and of course.. mushrooms and... arrghh! A snake!

Today's post is a brief description of the game that was in my head, before it got thrown out and replaced with an idea that could be drawn a wee bit quicker!Read More
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 18th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  17th February, 2010
A full day's work, and this is the result.

Download

It should be noted that this is very early stages, and that I really oughta try and find some nice instruments, but this is the first proper test of my new Framework Music Engine.
That is, I shove in a few bits of melody, chord, bass and drums, and the framework fiddles about, and plays with the tune, creating a constantly evolving background tune that'll continue to sound nice and playful throughout the entire game.
Neat!

But still needs work.

And additional randomness, methinks!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 17th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  17th February, 2010
Update
This has all been checked, rechecked, and triple checked.
It appears to have been nothing more than a coincidence.
.. That tried to steal my password.. And then another coincidence that caused me to reset my iPod for the first time since Xmas.
Purely coincidentally mind.

I'm sure there's nothing wrong with Angry Birds.
I'm still not sure about Crystal, but Angry Birds is quite safe.


Original Post
Last night, I downloaded the updated edition of Angry Birds on my iPod.
Lovely game, highly recommended.

The new edition came with "Crystal". One of those Achievement/Highscore tracker things.
It asked for my email and a handy password, and both were inserted.

iPod fully chaged, I lay in bed and prepared my playtime!!

.. But something was wrong.
Something was very very very wrong.
Angry Birds was running at around 5 fps, and hopping and skipping all over the place.
Dang!
I quit Angry Birds and tried Orbital. Seemed fine.
Back to Angry Birds, same thing. Hoppy, skippy, slow..
No!
Crystal's ruined my favourite iPod game (besides Scrabble)!!

Then... Something else happened...Read More
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 17th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  16th February, 2010
Haven't started on this week's game, or the new music engine, yet, and am already thinking of even more "other" things that must be done. (To be fair, my todo list has about 15 items on it! So I'm hopping all over the place doing lots of different things)

You might've noticed that I'm not linking to the Archive, lately.
That's because it isn't quite doing it's job at the minute, and it all needs fixing up.

There's a whole bunch of stuff that needs updated, including a YouTube video embedded on the page. How could I have not done that yet!?

It also needs a quick-upload-update ability, 'cos that's really become a necessity with these latest games.
And then there's the whole Linux + Extras thing.
It'd be nice to have the DVDCase, wallpapers, and other things directly within the archive.
That's a pretty big overhaul, especially where uploads are concerned.
But it'll get done, don't worry!

I've no timescale on that, though!!
Views 4, Upvotes 0, 16th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  16th February, 2010
aka BadgeBox, because I kept changing it's name, but forgot to update the exe's title! d'oh!

A nice simple maze game, with health points and power points.
Collect the gems to up your health and power, and collect Badges to increase your abilities.
If you manage to collect the four outer "Cornerstone Badges" you'll open up an exit in the level, which completes the game.
Otherwise you'll probably die!

Read More
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 16th February, 2010
Release
Game
  16th February, 2010
Guide Box through the maze to collect all the badges.
Views 1909, Upvotes 6, 16th February, 2010
Adventure , Quest , Whoops , Misnamed Exe
Blog
  15th February, 2010
Eeek..
It's scary to even consider this, but there's no free-forming games for a while.
We're in a zone now, and I can't stop it even if I tried!

Tomorrow's game is about ready, although I'm still missing 4 little parts that I might wimp out on!Read More
Views 6, Upvotes 0, 15th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  15th February, 2010
The current name of this game is "Box's Adventure", but that might change.
Or I might be lazy and not change it!



In this shot, you can see the following.
1. Box! He's a box!
Actually, he's a square since he lacks a third dimension, but we'll ignore that for the moment!

2. Triangles. They have 2 points of energy! If they touch you, they take 2 Health Points off you.

3. Flame. This should be a water splash. I haven't updated the sprite yet! Water does a little damage to enemy, Flames do more.

4. Diamonds. Collect them for points, and also to build your Health and Power. These are important, so although you might want to rush around and pick them all up, it's probably best not to do that!!
Shooting needs power, as does digging!

5. Badges! Box is yellow and red, the blue bits are the 3 badges he's collected so far in his adventure!


Missing features : Loads!
Less than 24 hours to complete the game!!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 15th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  14th February, 2010
A nice slow paced game is due for tomorrow, or at least it's currently slow! It might not be by tomorrow, but right now it is!!

A nice almost rpg-but-not, done on a small map, with lots of random elements to try and keep things moving.

The game relies on the Badges to expand the character, thus giving me an excuse to spend a week working on the badge part of the framework. All is well in Framework-land!
Oh, except the controls aren't done!
And the music isn't, either.

Hmm.
I'll finish off the controls for this, but the music will have to wait another week.
Loads of stuff to do for that!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 14th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  13th February, 2010
1. If anyone with an iSomething has the TurfWars app, I'm in there as ROVER546

2. Adverts. I shoved these on about a week ago, and they're not being clicked, but at least they don't seem to be ticking folk off! Google ads are nice and neat, and behave themselves.
If you do find one that does misbehave, let me know! Seriously, let me know!!! Screenshots tell all..
I don't trust 'em, but as long as they're not annoying folk, that's good enough.

3. Currently working on a game whose original title was "Dungeon Badgers", but which now has little or nothing to do with badgers at all, due to my intense lack of artistic talent.
It's gone from "Lovely!" to "Bunch of Squares"
.. That's not to suggest the game with Squares is bad.. Just that it doesn't look as good as the badger version! .. But as much as I could draw a half decent looking badger, I couldn't then follow through and animate.. .. um.. anything..
Badgers out, Squares in!
Go Squares!!!

I'll explain exactly why, and how, the gameplay has drastically changed with the art style, once I've posted the game.

Keep tuned in, there's a game with squares coming on Pancake Day!! Yeay!!!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 13th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  12th February, 2010
Jayenkai @ Google!
If it wasn't obvious what my google profile url was going to be, there it is!

Am I using it? Mildly.
It's supposed to be picking up my tweets, but.. I don't think it is!
So, everything's either over at one, or it's over at the other, right now.

If you're watching me on Twitter, I'm still writing this week's Socoder newsletter, which I've already posted here
If you're watching me on Google Buzz, I'm playing Pinball Dreams, which I already got a new highscore on, and later quit.
..
I'm not actually doing either!
I'm writing this!

Follow me!!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 12th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  10th February, 2010
Late last night, as I was half-asleep and reading through Twitter, @Komiga asked me if I was going to be using any version tracking software for my lovely framework.
My twittered response was limited (by lack of sleep, and also 140 chrs!!), so I figured I should explain it a little better.

Last year, around about Alien Deathmatch/Centipong time, I built up my 2D-in-3D framework to work in Blitz3D.
It worked wonders, and let me achieve a whole new ability. I could finally rotate sprites! Yeay!

I kept the 2d-in-3d framework as a seperate include, as well as a "defs.bb" which did all the default stuff, like the fps keeper, the loading and saving and all the rest of the framework type things.

After a while though, since I'm making so many games, a huge number of issues started to crop up.
One game needed to be in pure 2D, so I had to create a second defs2D.bb, which wouldn't start doing any 3D commands. Another game needed sprites to be layed out in a different order, meaning I had to reconstruct the 3D stuff. Another game wanted some tiles infront of the player, so that needed extra tweaking, and then Blockman Gets More.. Good lord, that was some crazy stuff to get that all working!!

The main issue wasn't getting the things done, it was instead trying to achieve them without breaking anything that could affect every other game I'd already done.

And it even affected pre-compiled games, too. The whole Badges/Scoring system could easily be broken in one game, and make other games unplayable. Things like that.
Chaos.

Every game relied on each other, and it became overly complex.


This time around, I've chosen not to even bother with all that crap.
I'm keeping things simpler.
I've created a "skel/" folder, and placed the framework, and game code inside that. (game.bmx and functions.bmx, as well as wordlist.bmx and music.bmx, which haven't been used yet.. Mostly 'cos I haven't finished off the music stuff!)

If I start a new game, I make a brand new copy of the folder, and begin.
This means that although every game will have the ever-building framework, (which can be reverse engineered back into the skeleton whenever I do something useful) it'll be it's own copy, and it won't get borked by something I decide to add halfway through another project 6 months later!

It also means, though, that the framework can be rejigged each time, to suit the target game better. Sprites can be reorganised, menus can be added in, control schemes reconfigured and more.
I've built the framework with these sorts of thing in mind. So, although the "Graph()" function will be more or less the same each time, they can be tweaked to show extra stats, depending on the game, without breaking other graphs.
The default fonts can all be changed in a small section of the code, and not end up changing the fonts in all the other games.

I've done it this way, because I'm building lots of games using this. If I were making a game a year, I'll probably have done things differently. But I need things tweakable because I just can't trust myself to leave things be.
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 10th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  9th February, 2010
What week are we on, again?! Um.. ?
Let's go for 24! I think that's right!
Week 24, Game 32, first proper game from the new engine.
Hopefully things run smoothly, let me know how it goes!!


Centipong 2



Could be better, could be worse!
Meh!



Lots of game, but a lack of interest lead to eventual dumbing down.
Still nice, though!



Windows : 3Mb
Linux : 3Mb (compiled under Ubuntu 9.10)
Extras : 6Mb!
Contents : DVD Case, Wallpaper, 320kbs MP3, big AGameAWeek logo!

Enjoy, and let me know the results.

Oh, and I didn't write this ingame anywhere, but right mousebutton does the net thing!!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 9th February, 2010
Release
Game
  9th February, 2010
Smash the pods to death!!!
Views 2155, Upvotes 6, 9th February, 2010
Centipede , Pong , Balls , Pods , Arcade , Breakout
Blog
  8th February, 2010
Or rather, rushing to implement the ideas suggested!!

As well as finally adding a "Enter Your Name" screen!

There's still a half-a-dozen little niceties that I'd like to add, before release. So, although this game WILL DEFINITELY be released tomorrow, it'll probably end up being Tomorrow morning + whenever I wake up + a few hours after that!
For example, it'd be nice to have more than one difficulty setting!! But to do that, I need to add that frontscreen menu thingy!
whoops!!!

There's also the badges, which are technically do-able, but something I've not really gotten around to yet! (Although the highscore table does already have them ready for popping in..)

um.
..
*shrugs*

There's other little bits, but nothing's too important.


Centipong 2 : Tomorrow!!!

Oh, yeah, and "Centipong 2 : Gentler, Calmer, Crazier" does appear to be the final title, since it's grown on me quite a bit!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 8th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  8th February, 2010
MadTinkerer's Net is now ingame.
Simple method of adding it, there's a small blob in the middle of the screen, lining up with the mouse's X position.
The player holds Right mousebutton, and the small blob grows into a little basket/net.
The player collects 3 red pods and gains "Love" magnet mode.
3 orange makes the paddle grow
and so on and so forth.

I have 6 so far.
Feel free to go nuts and suggest more, because there's a whole great big bunch of color combo's I can mix up!

Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Cyan, Blue, Purple are your 7 colors.
Go wild!

(FameGets : Everyone who posted yesterday already have their names in the left hand credit box!!! YEAY!!!)
Views 16, Upvotes 0, 8th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  7th February, 2010
Centipong has been wrought with issues since day 56. It's been a bit of a pain, but for a whole bunch of obscure reasons.

I'm up to my last day, and I just wanted you folks to expect something slight odd with this release.
See, the thing is, as much as this IS Centipong TWO, I didn't really want to tread the exact same path.
I've already done Centipong, and Centipong Jr in Java, and Centipong DS as well.
And starting this project seemed like a great idea, but it's the exact same thing AGAIN!
It's been really hard to push myself along the exact same path that I've already done. I haven't found this to be a fulfilling coding experience, it's dragged and dragged and it's all been a little bit overly repetitive.

The paddle's there, the balls there, the pods are there, the mushrooms are there, there are progressive waves getting longer and faster.

But..
There's no pickups.
If I add the pickups I end up with the same "Grow the paddle, shrink the paddle, add a ball" type things, and.. we've done them before.

I'm trying to come up with something All-New, but absolutely nothing is coming to mind.

Progress is stupidly slow, and I'm finding myself just batting the ball about, wondering what else I could possibly add.

I got nothing...

If you've an idea, let me know quicky, because otherwise Centipong 2 is going to be a bit pants compared to the original.

(...in his best EA PR person's voice)
But it'll look better!!!!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 7th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  4th February, 2010
The titlescreen of future games requires many things.

1. Title of Game
2. Credits
3. Highscores
4. Instructions
5. Menu

Individually they can all be nice and small, but put together, they tend to make things super-crazy! Especially when they're all equally fighting to attention.

Welcome to Framework Titlescreen Version 0.3


Title, Subtitle and "Press Key to Start" are staples, athough I'll be changing "Key" to "Click".
On the left, a whole box of credits, and on the right is the little highscore/graph thing that you've seen earlier.

I can easily fit a menu down the middle of that once I'm ready..
As for instructions.
Hmm.
I'm not too sure about those, actually. If I can keep them short I can bundle them next to "Press Key to Start", but.. who knows.
Centipong's fine, though, since it tells you what you're doing as you play.
..
Should be ok, right?!




Centipong : Tuesday!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 4th February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  2nd February, 2010
Engine's now ready for any and all future word-based games that I might randomly decide to build. The wordlist adds 970Kb to a game's exe when added, and when asked it spends about 100milliseconds hunting through the complete list for a word.
Luvly.

So, with that out of the way I'm heading back to Centipong.

You'd think, about 4 weeks into the whole Framework thing, that things would be more or less finished.
You'd be wrong.
There's LOADS of stuff that I've still not done!
It's terrible to think of all the silly little things I've not yet done, but it's built with enhancements in mind, and over the coming weeks and games it'll all build up into something a little more magical.

For the meantime, I think everything's in there that I need for Centipong.



Mmm... Centipong!
Things added today.

1. Mushrooms
2. Particles!

I've gone a little crazy with things, and I'm not entirely sure how fast it'll run on slower systems, but we're still playing "Testing the Engine" here, so it'll be good to know how well everyone's systems handle such huge sprites.
Because, even though they look tiny onscreen, they're actually all 128x128 pixel sprites!
Sure, it's a little overkill, but I really want to push this engine to it's limits.

One good thing I've noticed is that setting the game to a lower resolution does speed everything up, so I think the system's trying to cope with all the large polygons a lot more than it's coping with the large images. If you get what I mean.

*shrugs*

Centipong will be here on Tuesday.
I've missed enough weeks..!

And it's still not got a decent subtitle yet.
It's currently Centipong 2 : Gentler, Calmer, Crazier!
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 2nd February, 2010
Daily Blog
Blog
  1st February, 2010
Having now sat up for more than 10 minutes, I figure I'd best get coding, but I can't really finish off Centipong in less than a day..
What to do?
Well, assuming I now have all week to complete Centipong, I might as well spend today doing something a little different.

One of my all time favourite (of my own!) games is Stringy Things.
I know that a hell of a lot of folk don't like Word games as much as I do, but.. dangit, I love the things!
I've always planned to add a huge wordlist into the BlitzMax framework, but since it was never essential, I haven't yet bothered to do it.
Well, seems today's my lucky day.
A whole day to play "Make the Checker!!!"

I've grabbed both TWL06 and SOWPODS from here, and I'm going to integrate them into a great big numberical database, ready for searching.
I'll pop 'em into a single swift include file, and will be able to integrate them into any and all future games.
Lovely stuff..

I might not finish it all today, but I can at least make a start.
Views 0, Upvotes 0, 1st February, 2010
Daily Blog
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