I didn’t get the chance to livestream last night and won’t be able to tonight, so to make up for it I recorded this short little walkthrough of the level I’ve been working on the last couple of days. It’s a basic deathmatch stage built for Doom II that’s in dire need of more weapons and ammo items, and a few more player spawn points to boot. I’m planning on having it (and hopefully a couple other maps) done in time to playtest at the BGS Retro LAN Party next weekend (Facebook).
I’ve recently discovered I have an affinity for level design. I love the idea of crafting a space that you can then run around in and explore. I also love Doom. So naturally, it seems to make sense that I’d like to make spaces you can run around and explore, with the added bonus of shooting demons in the face.
I just started playing with the tools for creating levels in Doom in the last month or so, so I’m still relatively new to the subject. However, I feel that I’ve reached a point of comfort where I can livestream myself trudging along in GZDoom Builder. The first of these went live last night at around 9:45 or so, and you can watch the whole thing on YouTube if that’s your cup of tea/coffee/kool-aid.
I’m aiming to livestream every night or two for at least an hour. It helps keep me focused, and scheduling it makes sure I actually work on stuff and get something accomplished. I’ll probably write something more in-depth on my thinking and process at some point, but for the time being you can catch my livestreams to see what I’m making and chat with me about level design/games/Doom/whatever.
A few months back I participated in BGSJAM 4 with a bunch of super rad folks at Buffalo Game Space. Initially I was planning on just handling all the social media coverage of the event, but I ended up getting roped into a team and working on the game that became “Triple Threat”.
Five games were made in total, with four of them ready for release. You can check them all out on itch.io, so give it a go! They’re free to download, but please consider throwing a couple bucks in when you pick it up – all proceeds go directly to Buffalo Game Space.
Also, just for fun, I made this cool bit of promo art we ended up not using.
I’m happy to announce the re-release of my first print and play board game, House Rules! You can download it from itch.io by clicking here or on the logo above.
From the game page:
House Rules is a print-and-play party game for people with a penchant for making their friends do ridiculous things.Take turns racing around the board, drawing cards with rules on them each step of the way. One turn you might get a Board Rule that advances you three spaces. On your next you might get a Player Rule telling you to:
- Win a 10 second round of Charades
- Sketch a player AND get their approval
- Do your best Chewbacca impersonation
- Prank call a friend on someone else’s phone and keep them on the line for five minutes
- Play “Truth or Dare” with the player to your left – they get to ask/dare you
Sound ridiculous? It is. Download it, print it, and start playing
The game is free to download, but if you can donate a couple bucks it’s much appreciated. If you can’t donate but still want to help me out, tell me what you think of the game! It’s still work in progress to a certain degree, so feedback of any sort will definitely help make the game better.
Yep, it’s that time again. Buffalo Game Space is hosting a jam site for Global Game Jam 2015 at Canisius College! While I’m not gonna be able to attend Saturday, I figure I can at least get the word out.
Why I didn’t make a post about this earlier, I don’t know. Alas, better late then never, right?
A couple years ago I started digging around online, searching for other people in the Buffalo area that were interested in making video games. I myself had just gotten back into it and finished up work on Botrunner (which you can play on Game Jolt if you haven’t already), and kept thinking to myself how great it’d be to hang out with some like-minded folks. Eventually I found my way onto TIGSource’s forums, and wouldn’t you know it? Someone beat me to the punch and had already posted, asking the same question I had.
Cut to two years later. Futch and I, along with the help of some other incredible people, have created Buffalo Game Space. BGS has been a solid group for these past two years, consistently growing in terms of both members and output. We’ve proven the demand for this sort of group exists here. And that, to me, is absurdly exciting.
The thing is, Buffalo should have a game development industry here already. We’ve got all the makings of it – programmers, artists, musicians, designers. All right here. But these talented people keep leaving the area because they can’t find work. So what better way to provide these people with jobs than by bringing the benefits of a multi-billion dollar industry to Western New York?
That’s what we’re trying to do with this Kickstarter. Create jobs for talented people. With successful funding, we can get a better functional space that can be used by developing studios trying to get off the ground. Providing these teams with a space, equipment, and legal/accounting/publishing assistance means solid games. Which means revenue for the studio. Which means jobs. And like I said, multi-billion dollar industry – there’s money to be made there.
Hey, first post for a new project! I’ve decided to re-learn Unity (again), and figured a good way to do that would be to remake Botrunner. Before I get into the details, I thought I’d just post a few little videos of what I’ve done so far:
So basically what’s going on here is I’m toying with both 2D and 3D physics, using a sprite character in a traditional platformer format but using 3D models instead of traditional sprite tiles. And so far, it’s working pretty well! Naturally, I’ve still got plenty of stuff to work out. Here’s what’s at the top of the list right now:
- How to handle level data – do I want to make one main model in Blender or do I want to create lots of little “tile” models?
- Should I just make a separate scene for each stage, or design some sort of “stage loader”?
- Camera code – it must be sexy
- What version control system should I use for this thing?
Anywho, I figure I’ll be posting a good deal about this in here. As always, any and all input is greatly appreciated. More updates soon!
At BGSJAM 3 this past weekend, the theme was Let’s Get Weird!, which was a pretty awesome theme IMO. To that end, Damon McKernan and I made this awesome game called Thumbwars.
Thumbwars is an intense, two-player thumb wrestling game. Each player picks one of the two sticks on a Xbox 360 pad – moving the pad moves your hand, while clicking it locks your thumb down. Hold your thumb down to accrue points, but if the other player manages to pin your thumb you’ll lose a TON of points while trying to shake off the pin. Give it a go, it’s a lot of fun!
p.s. – I made the 3D models for this game, which might get included in the $20 tier reward of this awesome Kickstarter you should totally back.
A Very Valuable Lesson
I learned a very valuable lesson this weekend – if I want to make games, I should probably make games.
For the last year or so (Jesus, that’s a long time) I’ve been messing around with what I’ve been calling cldECS. It’s a framework in C++ for creating programs using the Entity-Component-System method. It’s pretty simple, but it works well enough. Originally I wanted to use this framework to build a 2D game engine to make stuff with.
Goddamn, did I bite off more than I could chew.
In that time, all I’ve done is made a few little programs that put some text to the screen, and one that had some bouncing sprites. But nothing came close to the complexity that is even a simple game engine. Nothing.
On the last day of BGSJAM 3 I was messing around with some more advanced features I knew I’d need in a simple engine (serialization, JSON library integration, that sort of thing) and I realized two things:
- The level of stress I was getting just trying to get a simple library to do what I wanted was something I didn’t want to deal with
- I was dooming myself to spend more time reinventing the wheel (badly) than making an actual game
I want to make games. I really do. But a little voice in my head keeps saying “dude, you gotta do it from scratch, that’s the only real way to make a game.” And that’s bullshit. This is the part where I tell you why.
Why It’s Bullshit
There are SO MANY GAMES out there that are made in things like Unity or GameMaker. SO MANY. Games that I love, even! Hotline Miami. Fotonica. Super Crate Box. Thomas Was Alone. Shadowrun Returns. Superhot. I mean, why WOULDN’T I want to make a game using one of these engines? Clearly they’re beefy enough to make games I would want to both make and play.
“Well,” says my brain, “don’t you think you’re smart enough to spin your own solution? What are you, an idiot or something?” Yes, I am an idiot. For thinking that I should try to make something as ridiculously complex as an engine right now. I’m by no means a great programmer. I’m not even a very good one. And that’s okay.
I think that’s the hardest part I’ve had trying to use other engines like Unity in the past. A part of me tells me I’m somehow failing by using an engine or solution I didn’t create myself. And that, quite frankly, is fucking insanity. When someone has created an engine that better, easier to use, and more supported than anything I could make on my own, why the hell wouldn’t I use it? Because of my pride? Fucking please. I gotta get over that shit and just make rad stuff.
I’m gonna do the unthinkable – blank my desktop harddrive and make it purely a Windows machine. Don’t get me wrong, I still love Linux. But I want to work in Unity, which means it’s Windows time. And having that be my sole OS will make it that much easier for me to get into dev mode (much like booting straight into Linux has had me doing way more C++ coding lately).
Sooooo, yeah. TL;DR, I’m getting back into Unity. Again. Let’s hope for some rad stuff.
Just a quick update on the Entity Component System framework project! Yes, I’ve been working away on it, and it’s now running swimmingly. While I’m still working on some example projects using it, you’re more than welcome to download it and try it out for yourself. The docs (that is, the README) aren’t all that fleshed out, but the headers all have pretty solid explanations of what everything does. There’s only four of them, so it shouldn’t be too tough a read. https://github.com/hellocld/CLD-ECS
As you can see from the image above, I went ahead and made a logo for it. While I might be getting a bit too excited about things with that, I made it for a good reason; one which will be evident hopefully in the coming weeks. And those shapes in the logo weren’t just picked out of a hat. 😉
Finally, I’m confident enough in this simple framework that I also made a little landing page for it. Right now it doesn’t have much other than the logo that links to the GitHub project, but it’s something to keep an eye on. http://cldecs.hellocld.com/