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November 15th, 2007 Category: Personal | No Comments

Since my last blog entry, I’ve released a very small update to pillows, mainly just bug fixes and making things a little nicer for linux users.

My friend (and best man!) Jeff Powers recently started a new webcomic called GeoGuys. It’s a funny little comic about three friends who are “nerds at heart”. I think it’s pretty good, so you should go look at it.

In addition, another friend, Dave Butt (a groomsman at my wedding!) also started a new blog, called d:\blog.exe. To be honest, I don’t really know what’s wrong with his old blog, but I won’t ask the hard questions. He recently became engaged (exciting!) and has asked me to be the Master of Ceremonies at his wedding reception (also exciting!). So congratulations to Dave and Ashley! 😀

Oh also, if you’re into game development competitions, the “Ludum Dare X” competition is starting soon! Dec. 7-14th for Registration and Theme Voting, and Dec. 14-16th at 7pm PST is the competition. Of course, see the Ludum Dare website for more information. For what it’s worth, I’m hoping to take part in the competition (if time permits)

October 9th, 2007 Category: Game Dev | No Comments

pillows LogoI’m pleased to announce that one of my little game projects, pillows, is now ready for general consumption. I think you’ll agree that the game has a very interesting premise behind it (take a look at the storyline, har har!)

I’ve got a win32 build and sources for non-Windows users (like you cool Linux and OSX guys!)

As usual, it’s under open source licenses, so do what you like. However, if you find a bug, fix a bug, use my graphics in your own project, or have any comments about the game, I would love to hear about it! You can contact me via my contact page.

Most of all, I hope you enjoy it! 🙂

September 25th, 2007 Category: Game Dev | 3 Comments

Scions of Darkness — ScreenshotThe Pyweek team I joined this time around, Hole in the Head Studios, received a 16th place standing overall in the Teams category. See the final results here. Looking on the bright side, our teams highest score was in the production category, and we ended up with the 9th highest production score in the Teams category. Not nearly as good as I’ve done in the past, but certainly better than nothing.

In my opinion, the reason we received mostly low scores was because our team’s idea was overly ambitious for only a week of development time. They wanted a full-fledged isometric Real-Time Strategy game, with nearly a dozen races to choose from. In the end, our submitted entry was minimally playable, and players didn’t get to see many of the other races available. It wasn’t from lack of trying, though! The lead programmer in our team actually was sick on the last day from staying awake for too long. Yikes!

Frostlen CaptainAfter taking the first couple days of Pyweek off to get married, I spent the remaining days working solely on unit graphics for the different races. All in all, I completed 4 races for the game, plus a few extras. On the left you can see one of my favorite units, the “Frostlen Captain”, in action!
You can download the game and take a look at the resources to see them all if you’re really curious. I’m looking into making a nice page for them and releasing them under a free license for everyone to use.

EDIT: I also want to add a quick message to everyone: If you haven’t yet tried Disk Field, go do it! It’s super fun and totally fulfills the theme, too! The game totally deserves the first place it received!

September 4th, 2007 Category: Personal | 2 Comments

Kristen and Chris are married! Yay!Hooray! I’m married!

Yes, it’s true. On Sept. 1, 2007, I totally got married to my beautiful new wife, Kristen. Alright!

Both the ceremony and reception were awesome. We’ve got a zillion pictures to sort through (and thank you notes to write), and I’m considering putting up a gallery of some of the pictures. We’ll see what my hosting provider thinks of that. 😉

Anyways, if you’re getting married in Central Alberta, I’d totally recommend the Red Deer Lodge. Very helpful and accommodating! They were really great about letting us use candles and rosepetals, etc. whereas other Red Deer Hotels were either very strict about that sort of thing, or clueless.
(And no, they didn’t pay me to say that, har har.)

August 26th, 2007 Category: Personal | No Comments

Startropics ending - YAYSince I was sick with a cold this weekend, I decided to sit on my butt all weekend and start playing StarTropics. It has always been one of my favorite NES games, ever since I first played it as a child. I didn’t remember actually completing it though, so I set out to do so.

It certainly took a while to complete. Some parts were far more difficult than I remember (I hope I’m not just getting old. Eek!)
However the most difficult section of the game (and rightfully so) was the final boss fight, against Zoda. Man, if he even touched you? Instant death for you. That’s badass.

After a bit of frustration (I only used savestates a couple of times, honest! 🙂 ) I finally defeated Zoda and went on to experience the game’s ending. Though I found the end story to be a little hokey (some of those Argonians look like elves!), I was particularly impressed by the awesome ‘zooming-out’ effect at the very end of the game. Very cool and not something I expected to see in an oldschool NES game. (I made a quick animation of it. Click here to see it, as I don’t want to spoil it for anyone.)

All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed the game and whole-heartedly recommend it to anyone who likes action/adventure games. I mean, who wouldn’t want to kill stuff with a Yo-yo! 😉

Some cool Startropics-related links: