Thursday, June 26, 2008

Canada Day Long Weekend

Just in time for the Canada Day long weekend (July 1st is Canada Day) I am posting Classic Monster Hunt. This is an interesting game as the games that it was based on predate the text adventure and computer role-playing games yet this game has elements of both types of games. The map for this game is very simple, though I am considering creating additional maps for the modern version. In fact, depending on the weather this weekend I am hoping to finish the modern version of monster hunt so that it can be released early next month.

If the weather follows normal long weekend rules and is miserable, then I am going to attempt at least one game in a day challenge for my Dozen Days of Dice series. This will be a very interesting day as I will be developing the game in Flex so that it will be compilable with the freely available Flex3SDK. On the other hand, if the weather is actually as nice as it has been the rest of this week then I will be lucky to finish off the modern version of Monster Hunt.

In other news, I have had Wii Fit for about a week. For someone out of shape like me, I think the product makes doing daily exercise more tolerable. So far I have kept up with the exercises and to my surprise have found the Yoga stuff to be much better than I expected and think that I enjoy those exercises the most. I don't know if there will be that much more software that supports the balance board, but if Wii Fit helps me stick with an exercise program then it will be worth the price.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Snakes and Lawyers released

I was actually hoping to have time to do another pass on the game that was posted today but never had a chance. Still, this is more of a story based episode with it being very easy to get through the episode but can take much longer if you are the type of player who wants more details rather than simply reaching the end of the episode. Of course, I am talking about One of those Weeks episode 39:Snakes and Lawyers.

Right now I am rather exhausted even though I never accomplished much today so I am going to keep this post short. I am sure some players are going to be complaining about my Medusian race. My theme behind this was that this race had previously visited Earth where they tried to impress the barbaric humans by creating status of them. These superstitious people mistook this peaceful gesture and assumed that the Medusa was some type of evil monster that turned people into stone. Making matters worse, the thick snake-like tentacles that make up their hair really gave the humans the impression of a monster. A warrior named Perseus killed this peacful ambassador and the legends of the Medusa then came to be. This is fiction, but I think it is a really interesting idea which is why I had it in the game.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Thirteen Spikes and the Flex decision

One of the nice things about this year's site format is the simple fact that most of the posting work for the weekly update is done on the first post of each month. This means that posting Thirteen Spikes Unlimited, which has just been posted, doesn't take too long. This is a good thing as this is one of the rare occasions when I was taken out for supper so I was late posting the site today. Because everything was ready to go, however, it only took minutes when I got home to post the update for this week.

While I know that you should never drink and blog, I am going to make an exception today as I do want to explain my Flex decision and think that since Thirteen Spikes Unlimited was created using only the freely available Flex3SDK and jEdit for editing. While the remainder of One of those Weeks will be created in Flash CS3 and the remainder of the Ultimate Retro Project will be finished using Java, future projects will be created using Flex. Flash will be used for asset creation but the projects themselves will be compilable using the freely available Flex3SDK. In a couple of years I will take another look at the browser landscape and possibly change my development direction, but right now I am going to be focusing on Flex development.

I have been playing around with a number of different languages and quite frankly am sick of having to shift my gears when switching between projects that are in different languages. Having all my work done in a single language makes my work easier. If a paying client wanted me to do some C++ or Java work for them then I would certainly do so but for Blazing Games and other programming I am doing in my spare time then the work will be done in Flex unless there is a very compelling reason to use a different language.

I really do not trust Microsoft, so even though Silverlight 2 has some really nice aspects to it unless I am being paid to use their platform I am not going to do so. Java still has a place in my heart but I feel that Sun just dropped the applet ball and FX is too little too late. Still, this is one case where I would like to be proven wrong. HTML 5 is no where near being a finalized standard so I might as well focus on Flex while I wait for it. Other browser based game development plug-ins simply do not have the installed base.

I have already pointed out numerous times that Flash CS3 is expensive, while Flex has a freely available SDK. Flex produces Flash output and I can still use Flash for the creation of assets and animation.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

June starts out with a dozen days of dice

The Blazing Games site has been updated and the schedule for the month has now officially been posted. The first game to be posted this month is actually two. Episodes 5 and 6 of the Dozen Days of Dice are being released as open source. More importantly, all future episodes, which will return to a monthly release schedule, will be open source from the outset. The games will be shifting from being developed in Flash CS3 to being developed in Flex and being compilable with the freely available Flex3SDK. The reason for this shift is the simple reasons that a free tool (that is also open source) is available to everyone who wants to use it while Flash CS3+ is an expensive package that not everyone can afford. In addition, Flex is entirely text based which is much nicer to work with for open source projects.

The second week of the month is the release of Thirteen Spikes Unlimited. This game is also going to be released as open source from the onset. It is also going to be developed over more than one release. In fact, the version being released is the 0.2.0 release, and simply consists of the playable unlimited mode of the game. Future releases will add skinable graphics, campaigns, and a construction set. In case you didn't guess, all the future releases have a Friday the 13th release date.

The third game for June is episode 39 of One of those Weeks. It is my last Flash CS3 project, with all my future projects being developed in Flex using Flash for asset and animation.

The final game for June is the classic version of Monster Hunt. It is part of my Ultimate Retro project which is my last Java project. That being said, JavaFX is suppose to be released this fall so it is always possible that I will choose Java for some future projects. CQ Fans should note that CQ5, as it currently stands, is being developed in Flex but that is all I will say about it until this fall.