shawn's blog

Preparations and lobbies

Posted in OriGamInc, Terrible Hot Dogs by Shawn on October 21, 2013

So, I’ve been working this card game called These French Fries Are Terrible Hot Dogs.

And I’m planning on launching a Kickstarter soon. I’ve been planning on launching it for quite some time now, and it was supposed to happen early September, then late September, then early October.

From now on, I may just say “It’ll happen as soon as I can get it started”. Some parts of the delay include Adobe Premiere crashing every time I start the program. Another delay was because I wanted to wait until after IndieCade, which was awesome by the way, for the start of the campaign. Over time, I’ve been getting as much feedback as possible, and trying to fix the Kickstarter page so it doesn’t bore anyone reading it. And then there’s the video. Probably the thing that’s delaying this Kickstarter the most. Once that’s finished, I may be able to get things sorted.

In the mean time, I’m working on two other projects that I’m hoping to share with the world soon. One is a traditional game for which I only have this mockup:

lobby

The other project is…well, it’s top secret, and not because I don’t want to tell anyone, but rather, I would like to spring it upon people with as little details as possible. So, I guess I really don’t have much to say now. This was mostly a “I feel bad for not updating” blog post. So, that’s it for now.

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Chromality’s new skins

Posted in Chromality, OriGamInc, Other by Shawn on August 6, 2013

I’ve been working on a game called Chromality for a while. I’ve been distracted by a number of things along the way, such a card game about French Fries and Hot Dogs, or a physical game about colorful bacon, but slowly, I’ve been making progress with Chromality. It’s a co-op/competitive game where two players share one controller in order to destroy targets on screen. I haven’t had the chance to show it off too often, partially because I haven’t been completely satisfied with the visuals. People have seen it, but that’s besides the point.

Over the course of development, I’ve changed the looks of certain elements. I started off with mostly…well….lines, then moved on to pixelated art, then moved on to a more cartoony style. I’ve now kept with the cartoony style, but decided to try and add a bit of comic book flair.

As I get closer to the end of the updated visuals, I’ll post a series of images detailing the evolution of the game’s design. For now, I’ll show a bit of what I hope is to come.

Another note: I started using Photoshop, which hopefully help make game elements more appealing.

The first thing I actually changed was the explosion that appears after a target explodes. The original explosion was something that looked like this:

ExplosionSimple, I know, but it served the purpose for the game at the time. And it looked a bit better in motion. However, here’s what I have for the new explosion:

NewExplosion

The halftone is what, I’m hoping, gives it an older comic book feel. The reason why it is grey is for when I use the image in Unity. Instead of uploading multiple files of the explosions as different colors, I can add this image, then write some code that says ‘make that red’, or whatever color is necessary.

 

ExplosionGroup

The hearts indicating health were another display that received a visual update. I’m doing the whole Adobe Creative Cloud thing, which is pretty awesome, so I hopped into Illustrator first to work on the heart, then finished it in Photoshop. I’m actually pretty happy with how the heart looks, so much that if someone asked for the file without the pattern, I’d let them use it, and wouldn’t feel 100% embarrassed.

OldNewHeartThe heart in the back is the older one, and you can see how the the first one isn’t as sharp as the second. I also took away the ‘shine’ from the upper left corner of the heart, an left it flat. And again, halftone.

One thing that I know I need to be wary of are the dots. If I have too many, the game may become a mess. So, this is something that is going to take some time to properly balance. Iteration, I guess. Seems to be the key to a lot.

Next, I’m planning on finishing the full mock up of what I want the end product to look like, similar to what I did for the original design. After that’s finished, I can get back to some of the gameplay elements. But that’s it for now.

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More March Work

Posted in OriGamInc, Other, Rainbow Bacon by Shawn on March 20, 2013

It’s been quite some time since an update.

PAX East is this weekend, and GDC is next week. I cannot make it to GDC, but I am attending PAX East. While I’m not part of any official booth, I do plan to try and get people to play Rainbow Bacon while I’m there. And maybe a new project which I’m currently trying to name. Hopefully, I can think of a better one than what I have now. In the meantime, here’s a temporary interface for Rainbow Bacon:

RB_GUI1

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2012 Recap

Posted in OriGamInc, Other by Shawn on January 10, 2013

Whoops. Looks like I didn’t have an update in December at all.

To be completely honest the end of the year could have ended better, development wise. Things started to slow down for a number of reasons, the main issue being that my main laptop started to die. As of today, the files are completely backed up on to an external HD, so when I finally get my new machine back, which I recently turned into a brick because my brain said”I know what I’m doing”, work will resume. Hopefully, I’ll be able to meet the newest deadline. More on that later.

Recapping 2012, I’ve made progress with making games, and actually learning how to make games. Of course, the only way to slowly increase the brackets of what you know is to practice, and to continually work on things. A couple of new projects were created, ones that will be turned into full-fledged games.

One of those projects I want to finish

There are a few things that received a lot of work in 2012. The first one being Tone Def: Revenge of the SquareBots. Most of the year had time devoted to this project. Thinking back, I feel as if I haven’t made as much progress as I would have like to. Still, I consider myself a ‘newbie’ game dev, and I haven’t figured out the best pipeline in regards how to get things done. This needs to change, and time needs to be managed more efficiently. While I do use Redmine to track how much time is spent on a task, I don’t take advantage of the boxes which allow me to choose an estimated time. The best use for this box, at least, for me, is to plot out how much time I want to spend on game elements. Of course, bugs and related issues will get all the time they need, until they’re are eventually squashed. Currently, I feel as if my work flow has gotten much better, and it’s easier to define goals and realized what is necessary for a game to feel like a game.

That’s mostly due to the end of the year work on Wiggity Wings. This started as a practice project, where I wanted to provide guidelines for a game based off a dream. Long story short, the only things I could remember from the dream were wings, bungee jumping, and wigs.

Not seen in this photo: bungee jumping, bird poop, lightning, giant brains….

Now, the goal was to have Wiggity Wings out by December. The next goal was by the beginning of January followed by late January. Now, with all the computer issues I’ve been having lately, the new goal is February. The first goal was missed, mostly due to feature creep. I wanted development time to be short, but there were a few thing that needed to be included. I initially intended to work for two weeks on specific ‘larger’ elements of the game. That fell through.

The second deadline was missed, partially because of feature creep, then because of hardware issues. The third deadline missed was all due to hardware. Still, the development time for this is going to be much shorter than Tone Def. The goal I have after Wiggity Wings is finished is to have two projects in an active development cycle. One will have a short development period, the other, a larger one. This should be beneficial to how I work, and the amount of time currently available on a daily basis. The longer project allows me to fulfill the desire to create something complex, something that needs a lot of crafting and fine tuning. The shorter project will allow me to be impulsive, a little strange, and allow me to practice different programming techniques, which in turn, will help me with the larger projects. Already, some elements have been taken from Tone Def, put into Wiggity Wings, made better, and have been or will be injected right back into Tone Def, making that game (hopefully) better. Right now, the next long and short projects are lined up. The next short project will overlap with Tone Def, after Wiggity Wings is finished, then once Tone Def is finished, the new long project will then take its place. This goes for all aspects of each project, including art, scripting, and music.

Ah, the music. In case I didn’t mention it (I did other places, but I’ll do it again), Wiggity Wings is going to have what I hope to be a fun soundtrack available for download via Bandcamp. The game will be free, but the soundtrack will be either $3 or $4. Before the hardware issues, I sat down, and made a number of updates to the soundtrack. Now, all of the musically completed songs have been balanced, hopefully for the better. I’ve heard a couple of good things about the soundtrack at MAGFest.

Ah, MAGFest! There’s a lot I want to say about that, but it needs it’s own post.

So, that’s it for now.

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Tone Def Iteration 3

Posted in Music, OriGamInc, Tone Def by Shawn on June 14, 2012

Looks like I’m getting to the end of iteration 3. Iteration 3 has been going on for quite some time, and I believe that I have made progress.

Progress is a vague term, and I guess I should narrow things down my specifying it as significant/little progress.

I think it has been better than bad. The iteration began with a few task, but at this point I am at 60 task for this iteration. Of course, this is a longer iteration that other ones, which makes sense with the increase in things I have to do for this specific iteration. These past iterations also lined up with important dates, which is why they haven’t really been consistent. However, now that I have no more ‘non self-imposed’ deadlines coming up, I will start to set up my iterations with a dedicated interval most likely every 2 to three weeks.

So what was done this iteration? More music, more levels, more modes, more instruments. However, what I really want to include is a decent tutorial system, rather than what I have now- temporary slides that show you how to play.

In other news, I’ve been planning out the details for the soundtrack to TD:ROTS. Most of the music is designed to loop smoothly as you complete the level, but that does leave something left to be desired when listening to the tracks. The goal is to have multiple versions of almost every track, one being the looped version, the other being a version that plays out a bit more traditionally; it would include an opening/closing, and possible some more tidbits which would be difficult to include in the game.

Oh, and I’m currently looking for play testers for TD:ROTS. In person only!

And there’s an interesting (at least, I think it’s interesting) article in Technically Philly, feature Tone Def. During that, I realized that I like to talk about my game too much.

But that’s it for now. I need to become a bit more active with this blog. I’ll probably do that after they add that often requested 25th hour to the day.

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Summer plans – 2012

Posted in OriGamInc, Tone Def by Shawn on May 31, 2012

What do I plan to do during the Summer of 2012?

[updated June 14th 2012]

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Tone Def: ROTS – Interation 2

Posted in OriGamInc, Other, Tone Def by Shawn on April 21, 2012

So, I finally finished the first iteration of Tone Def: ROTS. The first iteration was quite long, and didn’t really have an end goal until some time last week.

I’m actually still quite busy, and I’ll need to do a lot of work these final months of May. I also need to finish a bunch of games.

But that’s it for now. A lot of work actually needs to be done!

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