Saturday, June 04, 2005

Game O' Life

(Yeah, John Conway's too). God games. I don't know where a developer decides to start with one of these. Peter Molyneux. Will Wright. Sid Meier. Great designers if you ask me. I especially like Wright's toys he creates. They aren't so much games as just kind of a set of tools that you can play with in regards to certain rules. That appeals to me.

Think of it: Animal Crossing combined with Diablo. You can live your life, tend your garden. Piss off bees in trees. Customize your wardrobe. When you get bored of that you can take it to the haunted cave on the hill behind the wise-mans house (but is he really wise if great evil lurks forever behind him). That set of padded butt-leather you just decorated with daisies and stars is going to protect your ass as you go toe-to-toe with whichever creatures from the pits of hell have decided to occupy the cave today. Didn't you just clear the cave out last month? And how about the ArachniQueen who won't agree to a treaty with the villagers. She's always menacing people in labyrinth found in the forest to the east of town.

This game, of course, is fictional. I came up with it off the top of my head just now. But there is a premise. Take the best of a few games and you have yourself an open-ended world where you can play to your hearts content. And providing the game is playable off a hard-drive then you have unlimited additions in the way of expansion packs and user-created items.

Like the beginning of Unix, perhaps they start small and it just kinda turns into something that takes on a life of its own. Create a space, call it your world. Drop in some entities. Populate it with creatures. Give those creatures the ability to interact with their surroundings.

I like to look at these worlds as a God myself. As a programmer/designer I call the shots when I sit down to design a game. I create what goes into my world. On the first day I can create the oceans. I can add land. On the second day I could create mountains and air. On the third day I could populate the world with asexual Richard Simmons if I felt like it. Then let's say I rest, but not before I spawn a player-character and drop him next to a tower fortified with a generous supply of artillery. Then we make fun of fat people and wait for the cavalcade of Simmons to come charging.

Richard Simmons has done very well for himself, and really doesn't deserve someone who doesn't know him picking on him. But you need to make fun of some people some times, don't you?

-Now you decide how you take care of the situation.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Happy Commenting

Pephemie kinda sorta helped me out with my comments. Well, she questioned me on it and I tried a few more variations. Apperantly I don't follow directions too well. I hadn't placed the comment code immediately after the 'posted by' code. And that took me a year and a half to figure out.

-Vroom vrooming around on my bike

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Motorbike Madness

I finally have my motorbike registered in my name. I'd bought a motorbike from a friend of my Girlfriend's parents. This bike was bought by this friend but never registered. Due to this fact, I had to take the long way (but not the super-long way) to get the bike. First searching for the bike in the database and not finding it. Then paying a notary to officially stamp and sign my statement that the bike is mine. Then running the bike through the database again and finding it. Then saying "screw you" to that insurance agency and going to another that agreed to write up the bike in my name.

So now it's mine and I can insure it and legally ride it. It's about time, too, since the bike has been in my care for the last year. I'm taking it camping with me this weekend (before I insure it) so I can ride it up and down dirt roads.

-1981 Yamaha Exciter, measly 185cc

Of video games and icons

John Romero, I mean you. The two Johns, people I can only aspire to emulate. The other John being Mr Carmack at iD software. However, I think Mr Romero is the one I am most like. The guy spent the last few years (before jumping on board with Midway) doing what he wanted to do with his own company. MonkeyStone games doing awesomely fun 2D games. That is where it all started, back with the 2D, and that is where I'm at now.

It may be because I haven't played around with graphics programming, but I'd like to think that it's because I know what I want to do. I hope I can find myself a job, when I graduate in a couple more years (2 more left in my 5 year degree, 2007 here I come) doing some portable system game programming. I've got my current project underway and I think it may turn out all right. Or mostly right. I admit, I've only come so far as to get the keyboard input working with my (skillfully placed) stick figures. All that's left before I can really show the game off as an 'alpha' is to make a splash screen and replace my stick figures and flat ground with the textures and icons I've been drawing up the last month. Maybe if I get around to it I'll post some pics of my characters and the screenshots I GIMP'd together.

-Good to goal


I'd have a comment button if this blog would work. I've tried a few times but it never does seem to appear. Nobody reads this, anyway. If they did then I'd get an email once in a while.

I can give you a gmail account if you like. I've got some 50 invitations to give out.

-Though if you're a blogger, you've already got one.