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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Dungeon Crawlers

Recently, I got a new phone for my birthday. After given the option for an Android or an iPhone, my HTC One came in. I then downloaded the usual; a torrent client, code editor, and a few games, one being Pixel Dungeon. As it's name suggests, it is a dungeon crawler, where you attempt to reach the bottom of the dungeon and make it back to the top. It has classes, lots of inventory items, and even bosses. So I figured why not make my own? I do have some C++ skills at my disposal, and a bud of mine can do the graphics. So without further ado, I am announcing the game, and will post an alpha release in a month or two.

Friday, April 4, 2014

My Top 3 Game Dev Environments

Yet another post about game development, big surprise right? As you may have assumed, I intend to list my favorite three game development environments and explain my reasoning.
3. BlitzPlus
This takes third because I appreciate its' unique architecture. It's a high-level engine built for a dialect of Basic. I haven't really gotten the chance to use it, but I have tested it out and supposedly it blits graphics at remarkable speeds. (I do intend on making projects with it in the future.)
2. Construct Classic
Indeed a beautiful engine packed with many features, including a scene editor, built-in frame animation for sprites, and a simple .exe generator for your finished product. As I type, a friend and I are both working on an indie title in it. Aside that, I have gained a lot of respect for the company as they have made it open-source, and released a sequel to the engine. It's only a hundred bucks, if my title succeeds I will indefinitely buy a copy.
1. Visual C++/SDL 2
This takes first because I am new to it and so far loving it. SDL is amazing because anybody can build a library on top of it, and is one of the most widely used game libraries. Visual C++ is nice too, it handles a compiler for you, and works well with SDL. I also appreciate its' low-levelness, the functions only cover the basics, leaving more flexibility for the programmer.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Rant on Windows 8

Yup, Windows 8. If you've ever met me you would probably catch a couple negative comments about it. First off, I would like to say that I'm sick of hearing the same excuses given by Microsoft fanboys, its usually something like: "You're just not used to it." or "Your only experience with it is at Walmart." I do have some experience with it, I have a friend who I visit every now and then and usually end up using his computer with Windows 8. Its easy to maneuver, and I know what I'm doing. But that doesn't make it a good OS. So, aside the missing start menu (that already got enough criticism), I would like to explain why I hate the Metro interface. All the new features in the Metro can be (and should be) done in a web browser. The Metro attempts to replace the GUI with it's fullscreen apps such as Internet Explorer. Its optimization for touchscreens really bothers me, if you do anything real with your PC, a touchscreen would really be the last thing you'd have in mind, otherwise, you'd be better off with a tablet. Things such as gaming, programming, and file management are much more easily done with a mouse and keyboard. The Charm Bar is useless, and should have its' features implemented in the Metro, or more preferably, a Start Menu. The architecture of Windows 8 is horrible. An OS is composed of multiple programs running in the background with a kernel, right? Well, in previous distros Windows would run it's GUI interface, which you could usually find in the Task Manager. Not in Windows 8, it boots into the Metro for it's new interface and the Desktop is merely an app, so when you get to it, its just an app, with Metro running in the background. So yeah, I hope these are some justifiable reasons to hate Windows 8.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Useful Tips on Game Dev

As you may have read in my first post, I like to program. Particularly games. Heck, one of these days I might even get on Steam. But what tips do I have for my fellow game developers? I hate to use bullet points again, but I'm kind of at gunpoint here...
  • Be wary of your fonts. The text style can really determine a lot about a game, e.g. if your making a pixelated game, use a pixelated font. When the text matches the theme, it is quite appealing to the eye. There are plenty of royalty free websites to use, my favorite is openfontlibrary.org.
  • Code efficiently. The more minimalistic you write it, the faster it'll run. For example, use some else if statements where you can, or if your using a loop, don't call a function more than it needs to be called.
  • Use an appealing color scheme. Remember, a game is also a piece of art, so use something that makes sense. Use the color wheel, mix hot and cold, make sure it looks right. Just because a game works the way you want it to, does not mean its finished.

Friday, February 7, 2014

First Post, and A Linux Review

Hello Blogger, this is Nick here with my new blog. Most of the shtuff I will cover is about computers, videogames, programming, and anything else that isn't boring. Anywho, tonight I am going to cover Linux. I recently discovered that netbooks are not useless. Not useless at all, in fact. With Windows 7 on a netbook, you really can't do much, e.g. programs lag, games don't run, and the UI is slow. But, Linux runs so much faster, that I have actually started using my netbook again. Its not a new discovery, everybody knows Linux is faster, but I never gave it a shot until about a week ago. I'm running Debian, the 2nd most popular distro rivaled by her son, Ubuntu. But what can Linux do? Well, its known for server hosting, programming, hacking, and things of that sort, so its perfect for me. Here's a list of some cool Debian packages that I found pretty damn cool:

  • Enscribe – This unique program takes an image file, reads the colors and pixels, and converts it into a sound file.
  • Geany – This simplistic, elegant code editor has beautiful syntax coloring, multi-language support, and it can run your code without any need for the terminal.
  • Mednafen – Wondering what kind of ROMs you can play? Look up Mednafen, it supports SNES, NES, Gameboy, and several others.

Anyway thats it for my first post, hope you find interest in my blog.