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Aug 25


Hello! I have been a little absent, sorry about that. Over the last few weeks, wooing has taken over my weekends so I had even less free time to work with. Other than doing amazingly well with the wooing (I can hug her whenever I want without the police getting involved!!) everything has just been steadily moving forward.

Work on Acre has been going well. I now have all the core mechanics in place and just need to add visual effects, sound, and the surround stuff. I also added a basic lighting system. I was tempted to go with a more complex system but I decided it is fine as it is for now. I may add slight light variations just to make things look a little cooler but that is something for later in the project. I have how ever taken a short break from working on Acre which I will explain in a moment. I also rewrote the combat and collision systems and added a weapon mode to the item system. You now have to stand still to attack. This solved a lot of the knock back issues and adds an element of risk to combat. Before if you had a weapon then you where unstoppable. Once the effects and sound is done I plan to actually start on the art work. I think this will give me an extra boost of energy to get the project out of the door. I have a great feeling about this game. I think it is going to be my best game yet!

Acre light test

Light results in event

Sadly the 15th of this month came and went without any of the money that Microsoft owes me. It seems that despite getting them all the bloody paper work they have came up with yet another reason to not pay me. I can not ask them however because they do not entertain 'where is my money e-mails' until the end of the month! Sadly I had plans for that money, most notably eating and starting a company which will have to be put on hold for the time being. The company not the eating! So now I am having to put development on hold while I pucker up and earn some money. I am hoping to do this with freelance work but to be honest I am getting tempted by the guarantied income provided by a job. So for the next few weeks the focus will be dirty dirty money!

With the previous paragraph in mind I am also working on a little art site in order to sell the various paintings that adorn my walls and provide me with endless pleasure. I say this to install due value into them. For those who actually like my art you can buy my art and enjoy it every day. For those who don't really care for my art but hate me deeply (Could it be you?) you can buy my art in the knowledge that you will be robbing me of one of the few sources of sustainable happiness in my life. Sounds good right :D. Anyhow after reading about various payment services I have decided to go with google checkout. The fees are reasonable (roughly 5 out of every 100) and google pretty much own the internet so you know your details are safe because well they probably already know them and they haven't blabbed yet!

So that is what is going on with me! Oh yeah below is a painting I did for my good friend Edmund. His brief was striking and bold. He is also very good at maths so I decided to base my painting on a shape generated using maths. Enter the chaotic attractor . Once I had wrote a little bit of code to generate my own and played around with the variables to make a pleasing shape (I wrote it in html 5 because I am all hipster and cool) I imported the generated image into flash and drew all over it like a 5 year old! Behold its striking boldness!

Edmunds abstract attractor

Now I need to get back to selling my skills on the docks

Much love


Aug 02

The soothing summer of acre

Hello dear internauts, figured I should blog and let you know how I am doing. This is either a very late or very early blog depending on your levels of pessimism. Either way I write to tell you that I am high of spirit and low of fund. The birthday celebration I attended two weekends a go was most joyous and I even managed to get an invite to visit the fair city of Oxford out of it. I used my invite last weekend and spent an amazing day in Oxford. I have to say I was taken back by the energy there, I expected the beautiful buildings and to a degree the tourism but not the happy go lucky energy. Even the drunks in the park had a bounce in their step and some scampish banter about them. In other news I am desperately hoping I get the money owed to me by Microsoft come the 15th, as I previously mentioned I am all but out of funds and require the money to start my web design company.

As promised here is the finished version of the Miyamoto painting I did for the young Smith


Acre wise there has been an awful lot of progress. I have rewritten the combat system, the collision detection regarding npc movement. I added a dialog mode to the text window system as well as backgrounds and character avatars. I also added npc item interaction (which proved complex to think about and easy to write) to allow using items no npcs and npcs picking up items. I also extended npc alternative targeting to allow for multiple targets, (ordered by importance rather than proximity) this allows much more complex puzzles. For example there is a guard dog that attacks you upon entering a castle. You can feed him a bone which will keep him busy for the time you are in the castle but if you leave and come back the bone will be gone and the dog will attack again. But if you combine the bone with poison (I mean doggy sleep juice) then he will be an ex-dog and bother you no more.

Below are some screenshots of how Acre is looking. Please remember it is entirely made up of placeholder graphics at the moment :P



Dog attack

Dog sleepy time

I would love to stay and ramble some more but as ever I am late and have lots to do!

Much love


Jul 15

The Phoenix Rising Perspective


Hello much neglected readers, behold your time of abandonment is over, for I blog once more. I should have an awful lot to talk about considering my extended absence. Surly in this time strange lands have been explored, hearts broken, traps triggered and evildoers thwarted? Alas this is not so. I have mostly sat on my ass and programmed (or looked at just one more, funny picture on the net). But I have made great progress on my new XBLIG game which is possible called Acre. I am still using placeholder graphics but a lot of the engine is in place. One can wonder about the world, examine and pick up items. You items on other items and tiles. I also have the beginning of NPCs in place. They are capable of being your enemy and attacking you or chasing an alternative target if it is present. Marvel at the beautiful placeholder graphics below






I did plan to blog about my recent balloon ride. But I have to say it feels rather distant and ethereal now. Regardless to say I was dubious about entrusting my life to wicker especially since it had a hole in it (see below the photo I took of the nothingness between the earth and my fragile yet manly body) but it kept me up in the air even when lady gravity missed me so much. I was a little shocked about the pilot (a title I think is overly generous considering he can only control the elevation of the balloon) putting me to work so aggressively. I was made to both help inflate the balloon (hold a giant piece of rope and making sure the balloon did not engulf the near by people, cars, or horses. I was also made to help with the landing (push the basket away from the large prickly hedge that was speeding towards us), and help with the deflating of the balloon (again holding a giant piece of rope to keep the balloon from engulfing yet more victims). Once more my lummox physique has betrayed my tiny unhelpful heart. Please note, just because I look like I can help, and sport a friendly but slightly vacant expression does not mean I want to help or will not seek revenge if forced to help.

Where all going to die!!

It is nearly time for my jog so I best go prepare. To sum up work on acre is going amazingly, balloons are more work than you think especially for the larger gentlemen, and I should hopefully be back to regular blogs from now on

Much love


Jun 27

Adventure invigoration

Hello everyone. There has been another two week gap between blogs, sorry about that. In the first week I got smacked in the face by the big fisted thug of self doubt and while sitting in the dirt holding my nose the quick fingers of the "what the hell am I doing" monster freed me of my direction. Directionless I spent the week wondering around the house cursing myself and eating cheerio's

The following week I decided to take off from working on grub and instead did a little research, web coding, and dreaming of how to best change me life. After a lot of reflection I have come to realise that the poor sales of Love Hurts coupled with some rather unsavoury reviews has left me in a state of confidence crisis and a real need for a little victory. It has also made me re-think my plans to become a indie superstar.

This brings me to my new plan of action. Indie games are on there own far too speculative. They simply take too much time to make and all that effort does not even guarantee a single sale. As indie games are my passion I need to seek a complementary income that will keep me in vimto but also give me the flexibility to actually work on indie games. So I have decided to look into starting a web design company. On the outset it seems like a great idea as I am a skilled web developer, I am interested in web technologies, and it will allow me to manage my own time as I see fit

As it is a long road from deciding to start a company and actually doing it I have decided that I will try for a quick victory before I start. Over the weekend I came up with a game idea that I believe will be easy to put together, in fact I already have part of the foundations working! The reason I am working on this new game instead of Grub is that Grub is tied up with a lot of the negative emotions as it was what I was working on when Love Hurts was released. I still think it's a great idea and intend to go back to it when I have banished my demons. But for now it feels great to have a new plan and to be working on a new project. Below is a screenshot of how Grub is currently looking and how the new project is looking

Grub with broken spikes of doom

Project Adventure!

Lots to do today so I will see you next week for another joyful rendition of the trials of the ever increasingly emo indie developer!

Much love


Jun 12

The matter of unstable matter

Where the bloody hell have you been? Well I was just, and then, erm I am sorry kind readers! Sorry I missed my blogging appointment last week. I realised the other week that I really needed to add platforms into Grub so I set about doing so. Sadly it has turned into a never ending battle. At the end of last week I was close but no cigar so I decided to hold of blogging until I had got it all working and was sure it was going to become a feature. Days melted into each other until before I knew it, it was time to blog again. As it stands I am very close to having the feature locked down. There are just a few odd behaviours that I need to beat out of the system first. The main one being the fact that occasionally it is possible to fall through platforms. The good news is that this feature will add a lot to the depth of the game. I will be able to add all the platform standards such as locks and keys, spikes, vanishing blocks etc. Below is a screen shot of the platform feature in action.

Grub with platforms

I have so many things on the go at the moment that I have decided to take drastic actions. This week I am going not going to watch TV or play games in a hope that the extra free time will translate into increased productivity. I may also dedicate a day to reading as I have two business books and a book on unity to read. Fingers crossed this will not result in death by boredom!

On a very happy note Love Hurts received an amazing review from Gamergeddon written by the impeccable Kyle Sullivan. It is this kind of feedback that makes the long hours and limited financial return totally worth it. So thank you again for the great review guys :D

Sadly that is all I have time for today as I have to cram in a weeks worth of games before 12 o'clock tonight when the games and Tv fast begins. Wish me luck!

Much love