As you know Noel and I are still hard at work on Lasting Legacy. Noel has been doing these Development Videos every now and then explaining our process as the game evolves. Last week it was finally my turn to do one of these videos, introducing the changes to the user interface we have been implementing for the last month.

Anyway, you may notice I am as stiff as a board, and not one of those flexible boards of the games behind me in the shelf, but more like the plank pirates would have made me walk if they had to listen to me droning on for even a second more. But hey, it was my first time in front of the camera, so what do you expect?

In any case I either forgot to talk about or didn’t put enough emphasis on a few things in that video, so here you have a few extras.

Continue reading The User Interface of Lasting Legacy

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away, struggling to restore some cool factor to role-playing gamers across the galaxy, a small band of rebels discovered Pip 2, the best robotic dice roller ever made… little did they know that the Apple Empire was preparing to release its ultimate weapon, the DEAT… I mean… IPHONE 4, with RETINA DISPLAY! Disbanded forever the rebels escaped with their pixelated dice… Continue reading Pip 3, Return of the Jedice

Just the other day I got out of bed and, instead of making coffee and walking the dog, I got my phone, checked my email, and discovered my site had been hacked. You would think that, given the number of times I have messed with the morning’s natural order with horrible consequences, I would know better than doing anything before coffee, but then again my statistics professor instilled in me a firm disbelieve in the correlation/causation combo. The morning was therefore spent in a cranky, non-caffeinated mood, dealing with security issues, updates to my website, and a bunch of whining from both me and the dog. Continue reading The Art Style of Lasting Legacy

It has been quite a while since I wrote the last article in the Core Animation Games series. If you remember, in it I complained bitterly about the CA scrolling classes, and how none of them filled the ticket. To recapitulate, these are the 3 things I needed:

  1. A window into a coordinate system plane populated by “objects”…
  2. that smoothly moves through it by remapping how its borders map to that underlying plane…
  3. and loads the objects to be displayed as they are needed, while keeping memory requirements in check.

So let’s explain how to do that with Core Animation, and as a bonus we will do parallax scrolling, talk about some graphic optimizations, and show you flying cupcakes.

Continue reading Parallax Scrolling (Core Animation Games 4)

It is a sunny (for once), beautiful summer in the Pacific Northwest and, as usual since you went indie, you are sitting at home working. Any other day you would be cranky at this hour of the day, jealously looking out the window at the joggers running around the park. They are all slender and happy, their long hair moves in slow-motion, their immaculate iPods probably playing something from the Mamas and the Papas; you can see they are enjoying themselves. There is not even one of the Jell-o wobbly ones left; those all gave up last month and by now are probably eating s’mores, sitting in the shade of their RV in some beautiful locale. Oh, how you hate them all.

Continue reading Designing Casey’s Contraptions, Part 3: iPad to iPhone

Last blog post got quite a few comments, all related to the future of iDevBlogADay and the quality, or lack thereof, of my taste for telefilms. Since I was way more interested in hearing about this second subject, serve this as the last you will ever heard of iDevBlogADay in this blog.

Continue reading iDevBlogADay (and 3)

Recap

Posted on July 18, 2011

Hey, it’s July already! Does time fly or what? I guess is time for a status update and see if I pick up blogging again (didn’t I create something to help with this? So much for that, is not going to be my turn in ages!).

In any case what better way to talk about the last 5 months than to do a quick recap of my old list of evil projects.

Continue reading Recap

So here we are, one week after I announced the upcoming changes to iDevBlogADay and if you check the site right now you will see I have already some of them online today.

As we did with the first version, I decided to make the new design live early, get some feedback, and improve it with your suggestions. Better to have something out, even with imperfections, than to make you wait forever for it, then never release it.

It has been kind of a hectic week. Next week I am attending the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, a first time for me. It should be fun, and I promise to write about it when I come back. Of course, since I was doing this, I had to get off my ass and design some business cards! Designing something for yourself is always the most difficult thing, but nothing better than a deadline to make it happen. I am pretty happy with how they turned out (thanks Owen for recommending moo.com!).

Noel and I have also been preparing the beta release for Casey’s Contraptions. If you are interested and have an iPad lying around, I think you are still in time; just send Noel a note. To top it off, I got a cold that is making the fan of my computer sound like elephants running around my ears. By the way, one of those nights I could not sleep I also finish the scrolling background for the elephants, including randomly generated tiled paths…

So anyway, that is my excuse in case the whole iDevBlogADay site goes down in flames while I am partying. Why did I have to do it this week??? Heck if I know :) But let me give you the rundown of the changes.

Continue reading iDevBlogADay 2, One Week Later

iDevBlogADay started about 8 months ago. If you are reading this post you probably know what it is all about, but a quick recap for those new to it: every day of the week, two developers write on their own blogs about whatever they prefer. They need to do it every week, for as long as they can, on the same week day. For example, I am right now sharing Wednesdays with Gareth Jenkins. If for any reason one of the authors doesn’t publish anything on his assigned day by midnight PST, he is put at the end of a “waiting list” (unless he prefers to call it good), and the first person in that list takes his place.

As you can see the rules cannot be simpler. That’s how it was intended from the beginning, mainly because if there was more rules somebody would have to enforce them. Take for example the “you can write about whatever you want” rule. If it was instead “write about this particular subject”, it could be totally open to interpretation; what is good for me may not be good enough for you. I would then become more of an editor, and iDevBlogADay more of an online publication, with schedules, style guides, and who knows what else. At the end it would be less successful in what it really is all about: to make people write. So it was determined that less rules meant less ways things can be unfair. The “you don’t post, you are out” is the kind of cut-and-dried rule that makes it all work with the least possible friction.

But iDevBlogADay has been evolving. With almost 500 posts under its banner, and more than 60 people waiting their turn, is clear that it cannot go any longer without some changes. And those changes, whether I like it or not, are going to require some new rules.

Continue reading iDevBlogADay, Take 2

This week my post is going to be necessarily short. Noel and I have been working on preparing the first beta for Casey’s Contraptions, and there is still plenty to do before our intended milestone on Friday. He is deep at work squeashing bugs and working on loose ends, while I have been working on creating levels. Yes, you could say I got all the fun while he was hard working, but somehow solving those bugs always involves the rag doll thrown around, poked, squashed, and generally mistreated during his tests (I have this theory that is all due to his repressed feelings as a game developer that doesn’t want to make violent games; he is probably dying to make a zombie FPS). Anyway, look at the pretty thumbnails of my levels!

I still have plenty to do before Friday, so you will have to tune in some other day for part 3 of the Designing Casey’s Contraptions series (if you have not read the previous posts, they are here, and here). While the more artsy readers wait, the coders will have another (small) ration of… Core Animation (I bet you were not expecting it, given the title of the post and everything).

Continue reading Scrolling Hell (Core Animation Games 3)