February Life Update – New Adventures

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Hello, this month has been a bit of an emotional roller-coaster. More than once I’ve just had to stop because I wanted to cry, but there have also been some unusually fun times. I guess you’d call it cathartic.

Also, side note, why has an old post of mine been getting views from a lot of random people this weekend? Not complaining, I just find it kinda weird that people are suddenly interested in a post from late 2014 (wow, this blog has been going for that long?).

Anyway, the main things this month:

  • I’ve been getting myself setup as a freelance IT Sole-Trader, & thinking about how to make it viable has left me feeling a bit overwhelmed.
  • I went on an impromptu road trip with some friends to Twizel overnight. It was nice to see central Canterbury & help a friend move some stuff back home.
  • Been looking at the writing/lore aspect of my storytelling game prototype Sojourn.

If you’re wondering what a Sole-Trader is, it’s essentially a one person business. If you’re wondering what I’m offering here’s my draft business card:

XML Business Card

Yes, I’m intending on this being my business card (I wish I could say this was an original idea). I tried to do this in C# but I could see several problems with this approach.

Fortunately there isn’t much I need to legally do before I can begin work (I think I’ve got everything setup with my accountant now), but I’ve found myself having to wait regardless. Continue reading

Succeeding at Prototypes

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Hello, thanks to a suggestion from Remelic on the last post I’ve tried prototyping with a smaller board this time (13×13 spaces) & it worked. It was pretty cool finally getting to do this. It was kind of like being a kid again, except I took notes of what I was doing.

The prototype had these aspects:

  • A player critter
  • About 20 resources of one type – you need these to lay an egg (I really need to think of some other uses for resources).
  • About five each of three kinds of critters: a charger, a shooter, & a ‘rail shooter’ that charges up per shot – the odd critter respawns in a area out of sight of the player.
  • About 20? impassable ‘solid rock’ spaces.
  • About 10 ‘hazard’ spaces that damage all adjacent spaces when hit (I imagine these to be clumps of sap or gelatinous acid).
  • ‘Earth’ spaces which filled up almost all the rest of the board. These can be dug out.

All of these were randomly scattered on the board except for the player, I don’t want them starting near a critter. Continue reading

Failing at Prototyping

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Hi, it’s been a while since I did something about a game project. I confess I haven’t really been working on anything in over month; the break/moving made me very lazy :P. But now I have some things I’d like to try out.

Yesterday I wanted to try creating a couple of prototypes but just trying to get one idea setup somehow took all afternoon & I still wasn’t able to play it :(. I did this using components from boardgames I have & anything else that works.

First I should explain what the idea was that took so long. You play as an ‘alien critter’ in a randomized subterranean world inhabited by other critters. Gameplay would comprise of skittering & digging your way through the world, eating resources, & fight various types of critters, each with their abilities you can earn by eating enough of them. Every critter has a single hit point, including you, & you’ll need to lay eggs to respawn when you die. Depending on how well I make this, I may include other features like growing resources in crops & spawning allies via eggs. Continue reading

Surprise Game!

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Hello, I decided to make the most stupidly simple top-down shooter I could think of.

You play as a white cube in a small room. You can’t move but you can aim & shoot a green projectile using your mouse. Very soon red cubes spawn in & quickly charge you; when they touch you its game over. That’s pretty much it.

Taking good screenshots of this game is tough.

Taking good screenshots of this game is tough.

Continue reading

RM Hack’n Slash – Prototyping 2

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Hello, short semi-rushed update this time. I’ve made the changes to attributes from before & setup the new attack formula in my prototype.

I haven’t put much time into playtesting this week so my results are limited. I’ve had other things pop up, like Labour weekend right now & my 23rd birthday a few days ago.

Continue reading

RM Hack’n Slash – Prototyping 1.0

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Hello, I’ve finally started doing some playtesting. I’ve got a test project setup with the four PCs, an average enemy (Skeleton), & some pieces of equipment. I’ve just been focusing on the core essentials by running the ‘battle test’ feature, seeing how the PCs perform with & without equipment if all they did was attack every turn.

I decided to skip physical prototyping as:

  • I’m using an existing system. There’s little point replicating something that’s ready to use & quicker to setup.
  • There are too many numbers involved for doing the simplest things by hand. Its not that I don’t like math, its just that I’d need to calculate the results of each & every single action (base attack + weapon attack – base defence – armour defence, etc) for each & every single character for each & every single turn for each & every single playtest. It really slows things down & becomes very tedious when you’re trying to see what changing a single value will do.

Skeleton v0.1

As they are without any armour, all PCs are quite vulnerable (which is the way I’d like it to be), however armour isn’t working the way I thought it would. Continue reading