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Blog
  27th January, 2013
You all remember Cardagain, right?!


Cardagain was my first ever game on iOS, so it seems fitting that it also be my first on Android, too.
The basic idea is this...
A collection of pairs of cards appears onscreen, looking a bit like that crappy "pairs/concentration" game you used to play as a child.

The computer plays first, and picks one card from each pair.
You have to A) Remember the order, and B) Remember where each pair's matching card is.

Then it's your go.
Tap the remaining cards in the same order.
If you get any wrong, you lose lose a life. All correct, you get bonus points.
You also get a nice rising combo for every card you get correct, in a row.

The game is rather simple, but it works a treat.
It's not quite SpikeDislike, but I like it, and it gets your mind working. If you have a really good memory, it should be a doddle!

You can Download Cardagain here
Note, this is my first half-a-finished-game Android release, so expect rough edges, and if it fails to work at all, let me know.
In fact, if it DOES work, let me know that, too!

If you like it, and want more, come back here on Tuesday, when I'll repost this game with a few extra juicy bits, a test Windows exe, a HTML5 edition, and all the bug-fixes I can muster.
Views 3, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  26th January, 2013
Aaah, the joys of data compression!

OK, here's the complications with Monkey.

1. File Access is a little bit touch and go.
I've had a play with it, and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
I'm not entirely sure why this is, but.. Whatever! For the meantime, until Mark Sibly's had time to get everything perfected, I'll be staying out of it's way.

2. Can't read a raw .png
This is annoying! For the past few years, I've been getting used to using .png files to store my level data.
I've even been doing it over at PlayMyCode!
Now, I can no longer do it, and that's just plain annoying!

So, what to do about all that level data?
Well, it just so happens that I have a handy little function ready and waiting, that I first started using back at College, 15 years ago, for JNKPlat 2!
Yes, that long ago!!
Read More
Views 14, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  25th January, 2013
OK, folks, here comes the big test.
Is everyone ready?

Get your Android device, be sure to enable "UNSAFE!" apps in your settings, point your device's browser to this page, then Click here (.apk) to Download. It's a small enough download, only 1.5Mb.

Note : This is simply a test engine. This is not a game! Do not expect a game!!!

Feedback Required. (Post it below!)
Device : What have you got?
Android : What version's running?
Running : Did it even run in the first place?

Next, Click "Easy", and start tapping the right hand "Hard" button, making the number of onscreen sprites higher and higher, until the framerate (bottom left) starts to drop below 50. At that point, let me know the number of sprites it's doing.
If you're bored, you can also try out Normal and Hard modes, which draw bigger and bigger sprites, but those aren't necessary.

If your phone has a d-pad/control keys of any sort, give them a whirl in the main menu, and let me know if they work at all. My Nexus doesn't, so I can't test that.

.. ok, I think that's everything.
Thanks, guys!

Stroke My Munky!
Views 43, Upvotes 2
Experimental , 2013 Framework
Blog
  25th January, 2013
So, here we go again.
We're up to Year 5, and hopefully we'll get a full year out of it, this year (nnngh).
With Monkey, we get a chance to go back over our previous games, and remake them for a new audience, with iOS, Android and Browser based versions. I expect this will prove to be an exciting year.

Given that we can play at showing off, what games do you think would work best, and adapt well to the new touchy/mouse based gameplay options?
Or, what games could prove to be an obscure tricky challenge for me to experiment with?
Which of my previous games would you really love to be able to play on your iPhing!?

Comment below to let me know.
Read More
Views 4, Upvotes 0
Daily Blog
Blog
  25th January, 2013
I've been delaying a large list of things, but as I continue to make great strides with Monkey, those tough bits are getting ever so close.
Here's what needs doing, as well as explanations as to why they're tough..
(Note : Very waffley, and probably not all that interesting!)

Read More
Views 7, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  24th January, 2013
Badges?!
Got them!!


Took longer than expected, but got a basic "Give Badge, play jingle, show badge" type thing going on in the framework, today.
Easily expands for up to 128 badges, which all get saved, too.
I've also brought back an old HTML file, which I first created in 2011 when I first started experimenting with Monkey. (Wow, was it THAT long ago!?)
The HTML template allows the canvas to be resized easily, thus allowing the player to try out the game in lots of different resolutions, and aspect ratios. Nice, neat, and handy for dev'ing.

I probably won't be allowing end-users to fiddle about with that version, though. It leads to a lot of reloading, and that's bound to be bad for the server! ... and I'm too cheap to buy a better server, right now!

Anyhoo, that's a long way off, yet. There's LOADS more stuff to go into the engine.
For starters, I need to find a handy place for a Badges menu, where players can see their current list of badges. No idea where that's going! The titlescreen's looking cluttered already. hmmm... I'm really shit at making titlescreens!!
Views 10, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  21st January, 2013
Already!?
Who saw this coming?!
I sure as hell didn't!!


You can Play the HTML5 Edition here, and note a bunch of scrambled debug messages as they pop up underneath the game!

Update : I deleted all these early tests once I was sure the engine was stable.

CLICK THE AGameAWeek LOGO TO START!! (The AGameAWeek screen is there as a temporary holding screen, so when embedded it doesn't auto-start.. could probably do with a "Play" button on there, but I haven't got around to it yet!)


The game is mouse controlled, click to fire.
It's not a hard game, in fact it's really really piss easy, but that's not the point.
The point is, it's my first proper Monkey Test, and it's out in the wild!!

Let me know how badly it runs!
Ta!!

More editions coming shortly, as I manage to wrangle them out!

Read More
Views 3, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  20th January, 2013
Deary me, this took some doing!!


Today's additions might not look like much, but bloody hell was it tricky to add!

Here's the complicated stuff.
For starters, Monkey gives you a whopping ONE variable to save.
One..
Now, keep in mind that I tend to give players a highscore table, and a bunch of gameplay difficulties, each with it's own table.
.. and one variable to save it all to!
Then you add on your Badges, up to 256 of the things because that's a nice neat figure, and then all your ingame settings.
Oh boy!
One variable, eh!?

.. and then, as I finally settled on a nice method, I had to scrap half of it and redo-from-start, because I realised that any updates, and extra gameplay additions, would totally mess up the previous scores.
ugh..
In all, it's taken about 2 hours to get that working, and then I had to rejig my Text function because it wasn't quite aligned correctly for some reason.

.. still, looks good, seems to work nicely, and the checksums seem to keep everything in check, without breaking when I add and remove other bits and pieces.

All is working nicely, and should be reasonably futureproof, until I come up with some sort of even stupid game that breaks all of the logic!
... and don't get me started on Level Editing. I haven't a smegging clue what I'm going to do about that!
Views 4, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  17th January, 2013
Today I took some time to build a Bitmap Font Creator, and a way to implement them into the new Monkey framework. It didn't actually take as long as I was expecting, but there was one marginal stumbling block along the way.


I had originally intended to have all the character widths outputted to nice data files, so that the fonts would be nice and neat when displayed. Unfortunately, that didn't quite go to plan, as Monkey doesn't have such a great filesystem access method, quite yet.
A shame, but no matter, I can deal with Monospaced fonts! They're nothing new! All my iOS games have them, already!!

So, with a little rejigging, the bitmap fonts are now in the engine, and quite neatly done, too, if I do say so myself.
They even cope with "~n" newlines, too!
Sorted!!
Views 1, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  16th January, 2013

Things should be starting to look a little familiar, now!
Today, I added a simple frontend menu system to the framework.
Nothing too fancy, just the usual Easy/Normal/Hard options.
You can tap them, click them, or use cursors to pick them!
I also added cursor control to the ingame pause menu, too.
Everything's coming together wonderfully well, and is all bound to implode fairly shortly.. These things usually do!!

Nothing much more to report, unfortunately.
Maybe tomorrow!
Views 3, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  15th January, 2013

You might recognise that little icon.
Redrawn in super-high-definition (128x128 pixels!) for iPad Retina display, or other high-def displays.
I'm currently halfway through adding in the Pause menu, with appropriate Quit, Audio, and other functionality.
It's tricky doing it in Monkey, because I have to not only think about the iPhings with their none-buttons, and multi-touch, but also consider keyboard and mouse functionality, as well as what might happen if someone's using a joypad, or even an iCade! And then there's all the different screen resolutions, and even the different orientations, too.
GAH!
Lots to think about...

Lots to do.
..

And a heck of a lot of piddly little icons to redraw, so they look nice on an iPad!
Views 1, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  14th January, 2013
I'm all out of little experimental ideas, so I figured I'd play it safe, and make a shitty little classic game!
Plus I've been FAR too busy with the Monkey framework, this week, to do anything bigger.
No matter, here's a nice little fun shooty thing.

You know how this one goes.
Left+Right, and Fire (Z/X/Up!)
Also, if you play it on your iPhing, you can control everything with touchyness!!

PlayMyCode no longer works

Views 1, Upvotes 0
Release
Blog
  14th January, 2013
Welcome aboard, Tam Toucan, you're apparently the only one interested in the job of testing my crazy shit, so you're now chief tester!

I've no idea when the first test engine will be ready to get to you, but I can't imagine it'll be too long a wait.. Maybe a week or so..?
Keep your eyes on AGameAWeek for progress reports!
Meanwhile, I did a teensy bit of audio testing, yesterday, and can happily report that Monkey can pitch it's audio, unlike a certain other language which I've previously fallen out with.
Of course, it can't do it on HTML5, but it will still do it on other targets, like a good little language.
Bravo, Mr Monkey!

On the flipside, iPad Retina can't handle REALLY BIG sprites, but at least it doesn't crash when it has to..

The white areas are supposed to be the usual sky/rainbow/hills, but are drawn on 1280x1280 pixel tiles. Yikes! No wonder it can't handle it!!
Going to have to rethink my entire menu system, for this one!!
Views 1, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  13th January, 2013
As I continue to build up the new Monkey-based framework, I have a lot of things to test, and get working.
As most of you have noticed, I tend to forget things, like "hey, your game doesn't quit when I hit Alt+F4!???.. That little thing took years for me to bother to implement!!

In order to build the best framework that I can, I'll be needing pokes and prods along the way.
I also need a fair number of testbeds, to try out everything on.
If you'd like to join in, stick your name below. Your Twitter ID will suffice, or include your email address in the box provided.
I'll make a list, and send out future test engines to the chosen few.
If you want in, you should have a couple of systems to test out the engine on, be it PC, Mac, or Android. .. Yes, Android.. Lemmie know what you've got, and I'll let you know if you're on the list, tomorrow.

Your job as official engine tester will be to download the test engine, run it, piss about with a bunch of menus, and then quit.
These will be about as game'y as a fun exciting menu, but less gamey.
Basically just the framework.
You'll be downloading and testing as quickly as you can, what with this being AGameAWeek, I'll be wanting feedback ASAP.

Pop your name below, for super happy menu fun!!
Views 1, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  13th January, 2013
OK, let's get some stress testing going, shall we?
This test took ABSOLUTELY AGES to get working, because my Mac and iPod suddenly decided they were no longer friends, and XCode was playing up like a moron.
AN HOUR!!
For two little bloody tests.

rediculous!

However, what we have here is code that I wrote on a PC, tested on a PC under HTML conditions, then ran on an iPod having compiled it under reasonably fast conditions. (*aside from the bitchyness of the device!)

Read More
Views 4, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  11th January, 2013

o/yeayo/
There's a simple blast test.
I installed Monkey on the Mac, I opened my Monkey Framework, I clicked "iOS", compiled, switched to XCode, built and run.
It was quite simple, comparatively.

Is anything playable? Is it buggery!!
But it does show a few... .. Shall we say "quirks".

First, and you can't see it, but I can tell, it's actually showing up in Portrait, rather than Landscape.
I'm going to have to piss about to switch that for SpikeDislike2, although having it in Portrait will be handy for other games.
A tweak to be dealt with.

Second issue that's noticeable in the image above, is that the default settings aren't using the full New-iPhone/iPod size. The game is being black-bar'd, over the new wider sections. Not a very good start.
I guess I have plenty more tweaking and learning to do over the next few days.
Heck, the new framework barely does anything yet, anyway, so there's loads and loads to do!
Interestingly, though, it DID manage to load the Retina images, and even scaled everything to the correct size, even if it was rotated the wrong bloody way around! So.. o/yeayo/ I got that all coded nicely!!!
Views 1, Upvotes 0
2013 Framework
Blog
  10th January, 2013
I'm rummaging through my hard drive, and what do I spot?
System Defender!!!
An unfinished piece of crap that I abandoned early on.
...
I wouldn't normally post abandoned crap*, but then I noticed the date.
22 January 2003

Good grief, this piece of crap is ten years old!

Want to see how crap my unfinished games were, 10 years ago? Now's your chance to find out!

http://AGameAWeek.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/FlightDemo.zip '>FlightDemo

Up and down to move up and down the screen, left and right to fly left or right, and Spacebar (eeeeuww!) to fire.
That's it.
That's REALLY it.
I gave up, there.
There's nothing else to see!

.. the actual gameplan was pretty fun, though, but in the end I just plain couldn't be arsed!
Maybe one day I'll explain all about it.
Meanwhile, I'm going to carry on digging through the mountains of unfinished crap!
Views 2, Upvotes 0
Daily Blog
Blog
  8th January, 2013
About a month ago, Twitterer @McFunkyPants declared that it might be a fun target for him to attempt one game a month, over 2013.
Other devs took interest, and within a couple of days, his whole OneGameAMonth idea had taken hold of the indie community.
@McFunkyPants has since created a handy community website at http://OneGameAMonth.com, where devs can sign up, and earn XP points as they build their monthly warez.

The community now holds more than 2000 members, and is growing! Cracking stuff, which should hopefully result in a multitude of fantastic little indie games over the course of the year.
Of course, I'm on that list. I mean, I might as well, right!!?
Each month I'll simply pick my best game, and slap it on over as a Game-of-the-Month.

Am I worried about this influx of rapid development?
If I'm honest, yeah! If other indie devs realise how easy this whole AGameAWeek malarkey is, I'm in big trouble!!
Going to have to come up with some super-mega-awesome games, this year.
Not sure where to start, but hopefully I'll get that damned framework up and running sometime soon!
Views 0, Upvotes 0
Daily Blog
Blog
  5th January, 2013
Um, yeah, here's Tuesday's game!
I started this, a couple of hours ago, expecting to finish it off by Tuesday.
.. I've finished it, already!
sod it, here you go, have an early game!

PlayMyCode.com no longer works

Views 20, Upvotes 0
Release
Blog
  5th January, 2013
Even a Brain Tumor can't stop me from achieving 12 games in 2012!!!

True, I'd've much preferred to have done AGameAWeek for the entire year, but.. meh.. whatever!
(stupid tumor! hmpf)

January

1. Rooty Tooty Shooty - Garbage
BlitzMax

2. Unijuggler - Silly Colourful Fun
BlitzMax

3. Shift Clues - Simple Puzzler, could've been better
BlitzMax

4. Key, Bo and Ard, Too! - Much better puzzler!
BlitzMax


5. Unijuggler iOS - More silly colourful fun, completely redone for iOS!
Cocos2D/Obj-C


February

6. Snaked Up - Dull uninteresting Snake game
BlitzMax

7. One Turtle Dove - Guided Diving!
BlitzMax

8. Pancake's Syrup - Fun simple platforming
BlitzMax


9. NeonPlat iOS - Arcade action in the palm of your hands!
Cocos2D/Obj-C


May

10. Bubble Duck - Speedy Bread Collecting
PlayMyCode


October

11. Pick Boxes - Deal or No Deal style random box picking
PlayMyCode

12. Arcade Slots Pacman Edition - Random Slot Machine arcade fun
PlayMyCode


November

13. The Minute Tower - Cracking minute-long platformer
PlayMyCode


Total : 13 games in 12 months o/yeayo/
And for the first two months, I was managing one iOS game per month! o/wooto/
Wonder if I can still do that? *shrugs*
Views 2, Upvotes 0
Daily Blog
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