Saturday, December 31, 2011

om nom nom nom

12-31-11 - New Years Resolutions



Well, ponies, tonight's the big ball drop marking the arrival of the big 2012 (our last year on earth according to a buncha tin foil hat wearing nutjob theorists... as far as I'm concerned, the Mayan did not predict it to be the end of the world, just the end of a cycle :P )

And so it is also that time where we all make a resolution, or a specific goal to carry out over the next year. Well here's mine:

1.) To faithfully carry out all my personal projects, that includes the 3D Pony Project, the Spike's Quest videogame, a faithful return to my old webcomic series and the completion of a few other projects that had been sitting idle on my todo list for several years now.

2.) To mark this the year of The Hobbit. What with Peter Jackson bringing The Hobbit to the big screen again at the end of this year, I've made it a goal to make it a big thing. Towards the end of 2012 I'll be arranging a series of personal parties to celebrate the upcoming movie and in those parties we'll be marathoning all thing's Tolkien (ALL the movies, including the animated ones! :D ). And then on the 14th of next December I'll invite all my good local buddies to the premier of The Hobbit. I'll buy all the tickets and after the movie I'll buy everyone a nice meal at The Olive Garden.... Eeyep, I'm going ALL out on this thing!

2.) To also mark this as the second great year of The Pony. 2011 is already known as The Official Year of the Pony, but I'd like to see another whole year of this Pony madness! Let's bring it, bronies! And if SOPA fails, I might even celebrate this with some crazy Pony marathon (including that one g1 movie... shoobeedoo.........eeyeah.... c.c)

3.) This year I vow to be a more healthier individual. That includes watching my diet. Being more careful with my sugar/carbs intake, etc, etc...

4.) To finally get me a car so I can stop being stuck at my apartment all the time. I'm already well on my way to this goal. :3

5.) To join the local art club and also try to produce an original piece of artwork at least once each month for the whole year. Maybe if I stick true to this goal I could start doing commission work. Lord knows I could use the money :P

6.) And officially on December 22, 2012 I'll be throwing a huge "I've survived the end of the world" party. Or at least I'll try to throw one. If I have enough money left over from my crazy Hobbit party thing :P If successful, I hope to not only invite local friends but maybe some of my good online buddies. Who knows, maybe I'll make it an online stream event :D

And that's all I have for this next year's resolutions. :3 So who else is celebrating the ball drop with a pizza and some Smirnoff?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

12-22-11 - My New Tech Revealed



Well there you have it. My new laptop.

I went to Wal Mart yesterday as I said I would and went computer shopping.

unfortunately they did not have the computer I was looking for so I ended up getting the cheapest thing they had.

Its an Acer Aspire One Netbook built in with Windows 7 Starter Edition (say it with me. "Ewwwwwww... starter edition!")

For those who don't know, Starter Edition is the absolute worst version of Windows 7 in that its very limiting. Its actually just a demo of the actual Windows 7 os (you literally have to hack the damn thing to change the desktop background! *RAGE!!!*), and so I found out the hard way that I have to spend a ton more money just to purchase a fully function-able Windows 7 OS.... Microsoft, I am disappoint!

But aside from that, I'm actually loving my new toy. The keyboard is of a perfect (and comfortable) size for me to do my work on, and the Acer, despite how small it may look from a glance (its exactly the same size as my Bamboo Tablet) is actually just right!

Also the computer itself is surprisingly light, making it all the more portable :)

And the battery lasts a descent 4 hours.

I purchased a cheap wireless mouse with matching colors to go with it. (please take my word for it... cheap wireless mouse is cheap. And not really in a good way... :P )

I spent the whole day yesterday installing my usual software (in between playing with and caring for my new puppy.)

And now I'm looking forward to doing some actual work on it. :)

Once more though, I say stay tuned! I'll try to keep y'all updated on any kind of progress.

Half of the day today will be spent doing last minute Christmas shopping :P

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

12/21/11 - Updating my Tech / New Family Member

I've got a $100 holiday bonus for the month so today I'll be going out to buy myself an early Christmas present.

I'm leaning very heavily towards a new laptop, one that would be able to run all my needed software without dumb outdated errors :P I'm hoping the new  virtual atmosphere of a new computer may also help inspire me to be more productive on these projects.



I do have a valid excuse for not being very productive in recent days... (see picture) meet Millie (short for Millicent, and named after Millie from the oncew popular Ozy and Millie web cartoons), another early Christmas present from my grandparents. She's quiet the handful! Since its too cold to walk her I'm having to house train her on those expensive blue pet pads and at night I have to keep her in a little baby play-pin and dagnabbit, she gets LOUD at these times!

Still, she's quiet a bundle of joy. My grandmother sugested I keep her for a few days and see if I can handle such an extra amount of responsibility... and while I'm on the fense about it, I cant help but adore Millie regardless of how messy and yappy she may be :3

I'm trying to work out ways that I can keep a watch on her while I work on my projects. I'm honestly a bit stumped... so if anypony here has any good advise about keeping new young puppies while still maintaining large personal projects, please post your suggestions here!

I'll try to keep y'all updated!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

11-13-11 - Enhancing the Map System

Today I'm putting the inventory system on hold in favor of enhancing the map editor. This will be in favor of an easier to use interface as well as the ability to use more than one tileset for different maps.

Also I've often considered making a special map editor that other people could use to make custom Spike's Quest levels with a level player emulator. This could be used to make some challenging levels of your own to share with others. Kind of like those Mario Bros level editors that we often see floating around the internet from time to time. Not sure if such an project would be ready for the next test demo, but we shall see!

Another note, I've been considering redoing Spike's sprite set making it look better and whatnot. its a huge 'maybe' though so dont go expecting it :P

Monday, December 12, 2011

12-12-11 - New Demo Deadline

Demo #5 will be due out for the 5th of January.

Why am I going back to using deadlines again? Well simply because since I've done away with them I've become way too relaxed even to the point of doing absolutely nothing for long periods of time... I'm pretty dang upset with myself about it... so yeah.

Strict deadlines for the sake of motivation and being productive. :P

Hurray.

MAJOR CHANGE:  I've decided to extend the deadline to the 30th, giving me more time to make the demo worthwhile ;)

but from this time until then I'll be working my flank off everyday (maybe except Saturdays) until the demo is finished to 'perfection'

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

11-29-11 - Early Look at the Inventory Items



These past few weeks I've been toying with the inventory system. What you see in the picture is what I have so far and it may or may not be final.

So your probably wondering what some of these items are and what they'll do in the game. Well allow me to explain each one for you. :)

items from left to right / top to bottom:

-------------------------------
Bombs:
Use to blow up bomb blocks, or bust open a wall to reveal a door. It can also be used to exterminate certain enemies. But watch out, its explosion can hurt you!

-------------------------------
Boomerang:
This item can be used to kill certain low level enemies or stun mid leveled ones. It can also retrieve certain items that you cant normally reach.

-------------------------------
Bow & Arrow:
Can kill mid leveled enemies but can only stun high level enemies. Also when an arrow sticks n the wall you can use it to spring yourself up to certain unreachable platforms!

Note: The use of a single arrow will deduct 1 bit of gold. When you run out of bits then your out of arrows. This borrows heavily from the method of the first Legend of Zelda on the NES

-------------------------------
Grapple Hook:
If there is a special grappling point horizontally across from you then you can use your grapple hook to quickly launch yourself across to it. Or if there's a ceiling grappling point in your range you can use it to swing across to certain platforms.

-------------------------------
Shield:
When you equip this with your secondary action button (default keyboard key A) then you can use it to repel certain projectiles as long as you are facing in the direction of incoming projectile. The shield can also be used to get past certain areas where heavy wind normally blocks your progress.

-------------------------------
Magic Flute:
When you acquire the magic flute you can use it to summon the aid of certain Ponies that you've already rescued.(when you rescue a pony and they have a summons tune, you automatically learn it from them)

-------------------------------
Owl Charm:
Use this magical charm to summon the aid of Owlicious (am I spelling the name right?) once summoned you can latch on to his talons and use him to reach certain hard to reach areas. Keep an eye on your magic meter though! when you run out of magic your owl friend will vanish!

-------------------------------
Wand of Fire:
This wand will produce three blue fire balls that will orbit around Spike causing damage to any enemy who comes in contact with them! This will use your magic though so use it wisely!

note: this will not double as a shield! Projectiles can still hurt you!

-------------------------------
Fire Shield:
This crystal orb will produce a bubble shield around Spike that can protect you from fire/flame projectiles. You can also walk on lava! This will eat up your magic though so use it wisely!

-------------------------------
Ice Shield:
This crystal orb will produce a bubble shield around spike that will protect him from ice attacks. It also gives you the ability to magically walk through certain ice walls. Again, it uses up your magic. Use wisely!

-------------------------------
Green Apple:
Health item that you can only purchase from Applejack's apple store. Fills up five hearts. You can only store ten of these in your inventory.

-------------------------------
Apple Cider:
Another health item that you can only get by purchasing it from Applejack's Apple Store. This item will completely fill your heart containers and magic meter.

=================================

Yes, I am perfectly aware that this inventory borrows heavily from the classic Zelda Inventory. :P But is it really such a bad thing? I did try to give some of these items some extra functions such as the ability to use the grappling hook to swing across areas or use the arrows that get stuck in walls to bounce to higher platforms. But I dunno...

I'd like to hear some opinions...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

11-19-11 Skyrim Burnouts ARE a Good Thing!

I'm feeling a bit burned out on Skyrim. Its still an amazing and brilliant piece of software but sometimes there needs to be a line and this is it :P

I'll continue to play it in small doses but no more staying up til 5:00 just to level up my character and etc etc

I know I've said it many times before already, but Spikes Quest really needs some love and I havent been really giving it any for the past couple of months. I guess when I got burned out on it after Demo 4 it really kinda left a scar and that's why I've been having such a hard time getting back to work on it.

I'm hoping that today I can get my inspiration and motivation back on track. Anypony got any good game suggestions to help with the inspiration bit? Maybe I should revisit Metroid Prime again that was one of the games that inspired SQ from the start.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

11-15-11 - Spikes Quest - The Trilogy

I may be thinking too far ahead here but I've had a thought and I've been thinking about it for the past couple of days.

I may actually make Spikes Quest a trilogy project. The third game would be labelled 'Spike's Quest 3 - ''Dragonborn'' (insert obligatory Skyrim jokes here :P) and may actually be a 3D third person Metroid style platformer.

the second game is not yet labelled but would keep the traditional 2D gameplay and would actually have an overworld map kinda like Adventures of Link on the NES

Also just because I havent updated lately doesn't mean I haven't been productive. I've finally got the pause function to work and I'm about to begin work on the inventory screen where you get to select your second hand items and stuff like that

its just been a bit slow going.... Blame it on Bethesda.

Confound ye Skyrim!

Monday, November 7, 2011

11-7-11 - Why is a pause screen such a headache to program?

So today I did quiet a bit of cleaning up on the old code and while at it I added a few small things here and there to help make the code more easier to work with.

But now I'm stuck trying to figure out just what the hay is wrong with my 'pause game' functions  (used for the inventory screen and other such things)... for some reason its not reading the pause button while in the pause screen, and that's a pain in the noggin... :P

Oh well, at least I got some work done! :D

Oh, and just in case y'all havent noticed, I'm working bi-daily meaning I'm doing what I can every two days on the code. The other spare days are spent on other projects. I find it works nicely giving me that extra boost freedom I've been needing.

So stay tuned for another update on wednesday and then another on friday and then the next on next Monday. (Saturdays are strictly off days and Sundays begin my production on the other projects again)

see how that works?

it may slow things down a bit but it'll have to do until those other projects are completely off my slate :P

Saturday, November 5, 2011

11-5-11 - Just Re-familiarizing myself with the game's source

So, since yesterday I've just been piddling with the source, and getting to know it again.

I guess there's some truth that if a programer hasnt touched his code in a month he just as well had not even coded it at all... That saying means that its tough to remember everything you did if you've left your work for a long time.

But I'm slowly readjusting. Already I have some pretty spiffy ideas for the game and I'm looking forward to incorporating those ideas into the project :)

Oh, and this also means I'll be getting back to doing daily updates again. I find that by doing that it kinda helps keep me hyped about my own project, even if there isnt much going on production-wise (there's no excuse, I have all the free time in the world! and yet I find myself being a lazy flank... I need MOTIVATION!!! :O )

More to come!

Friday, November 4, 2011

11-4-11 - Oh hai thar!

Okay, so it has been over two weeks since I've even touched this project (or blog, or even PChan thread) the markings on my project dry-erase board have possibly dried to the point that I may have to scrape them off :P and the dust has caked so much on the project books that you could quiet literally slice it like an actual cake.


So...

back to work tiem?

ayep.

I'll try to work towards something worthy of updating on by this evening.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

10-19-11 - Woah, lookit the dust! :P



I hate being guilty for anything (as I'm sure anypony hates being guilty for anything)

When I decided to try and tackle two projects at the same time I should had seen what was coming. Lately I've been spending my whole days working on the other project.

I thought maybe I could work one project the first half a day (that being the 3DS pony project) and then the other project the second half of the day (that being Spike's Quest) but by trying to do this I've learned something a bit aweful about myself. Once I put my mind to one project I tend to focus on that project the for the entire duration of the day!

So... I need some opinions...

either I focus on one project one day and the other project on the day after (and so forth) or I focus on one project the first half of the week and the other the second half.

Which one sounds best?

(the included pic is from the 3DS Pony project, feel free to comment ;) - )

Monday, October 17, 2011

10-17-11 - A Fresh New Start

So today I begin refreshed from my week long break from the game.

Of course now I have the 3DS Pony project which will also keep me busy and productive when I become burned out from working on this game (check the 3DS Pony thread here: http://www.ponychan.net/chan/collab/res/24350.html )

I'll be spending the first half of my free time working on the 3DS Pony Project and then the second half will be spent working on the game. I indeed have my work cut out for me... But I promise not to work myself too hard (to avoid risk of another burnout)

my break times will be spent outdoors on nice little nature hikes or just a walk a few times around the block.

But enough of the blab here. There's much work to be done!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

10-16-11 - Side Project # 2 decision

Okay, so I've decided on what I must do for the side project and yes, it will be Pony related (what can I say? Once I became a brony all thought of originality floated right out my bedroom window! :P - )

I'm going to do a little project that I've been meaning to do since the Nintendo 3DS came out... 3DS Ponies!

That's right, I plan to 3D-afy all our favorite ponies so that you can view them on your 3DS (or other 3D viewing devices) or you can view them in stereo crossed eyed vision or 3D (red/cyan) glasses!

I'll be doing the Ponies in my own art style so they'll all seem original and fresh.

I'll be trying to release one piece of this series once a week (or whenever they're finished) right up until I've done every major popular pony in the fandom!

Here's my Pony todo list:

Mane Characters:
- Pinkie Pie : "Breaking The 4th Wall AND the 3rd Dimension!"
- Fluttershy : "Meadow Dreams"
- Twilight Sparkle : "Lets Read a Book"
- Applejack : "Its Raining Apples!"
- Rarity : "Glorious!"
- Rainbow Dash : "3D RainBOOM"

BG Characters:
- Derpy Hooves : "You've Got Mail!"
- Luna
- Celestia

If you have any request, then feel free to add them in the comments. I cant promise that I can do them all but we'll see! :)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

10-15-11 - Production Starts Back on Monday

The much needed break has been very effective! I now have the desire to start back work on the game again. Enough with the lounging around doing nothing all day, I feel the need and desire to be productive! :)


The image here just showcases what I had got done with the new tileset so far (before my break). Still a long ways from completion, but its looking pretty spiffy (its just the basic layout so far, will be adding other details and some extra bits) it also needs a good tweaking as you may can tell... I'll resume work on it Monday along with some coding. ;)

Also I'll be taking the advise of that article I posted in the last blog post and I'll begin work on a secondary side project. It may or may not interest you (it wont be pony related) but it'll give me something else to do to help avoid certain future burnout. What is it? I'm thinking about doing a game in 3D, it may be a fps Heretic/Doom style game or it may be a 3D Mario 64 style platformer. If anypony here is interested then I'll keep y'all posted here until I have an official blog for it ;)

For now I shall enjoy the rest of my time off getting things organized and cleaned up again...

( It honestly doesn't help that my current food budget for the month is at $10.00 and all I have to live on is Ramen noodles, bits of chicken and a few boxes of rice :P but I'm managing! )

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

10-12-11 - Overcoming Creative Burnout

As some of you might have noticed, my updates have been getting slower and slower to the point that I hardly ever update daily like I used to. The fact of the matter is that I'm suffering what many call 'Creative Burnout'

I'm having a hard time focusing my full energy at this project and I keep desiring to do other things (like doing absolutely nothing other than playing videogames or watching movies on netflix, or browsing the internet)

Facts to be these past couple of days I've done nothing but browse Youtube or piddled around on my XBox 360.

Maybe I do need a break from the game. A vacation, if you will. A few weeks give or take. I want to finish this project, but first I really need to refill my own personal energy meter.

I've just finished reading an article about creative burnout (you can find it here: www.scottberkun.com/essays/33-how-to-survive-creative-burnout/ ) and I intend to follow the advise given in that article.

So for the next week or so I plan on getting myself active in other things. Going out for a daily walk (with it being autumn, its a perfect time to do so! ;) - ) maybe I'll begin work on another little side project and maybe I should go read a good book (lord knows that its been months since I've read one of Tolkien's masterpieces.)

Hopefully within a week I'll have my creative juices flowing again.

If anyone here has any good advise about tackling creative burnout then please feel free to post it here. :)

And please dont lose hope in this project!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

10-9-11 - New Tileset in Progress

(Click the image for a full view) 

So I finally started work on a new tileset for the game. This tileset is labelled 'The Celestial Gardens' in the production book and what your looking at is just the first couple of hours of work in Paint Shop Pro. Within the next week it'll start to look more and more fuller and brilliant with statues and brilliant decor.
This may also be the official tileset for test demo #5 :)

As far as coding goes, I havent done any today, but I'll be getting around to doing some later this evening (I want to work some more on this tileset first and get it working in the map editor :) - )

Please feel free to post your opinions. :)

Saturday, October 8, 2011

10-8-11 - Birthday Break

As far as this morning goes I've managed to successfully plug in a boomerang function into the game's source code and the day before that I finished working in the item grab system.

But for the rest of the day I intend to celebrate that which is my birth.

I am officially 29 years old today.

So far, no cake, no gifts but a few nice "Happy birthday"s from friends and family.

So from this day forward here's looking forward to year 30 :)

I'll resume work on the game tomorrow and hopefully have a new video up by Monday evening.

Stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

10-5-11 - Coins :)

Some people didn't seem to know what those weird little spinning things were in Demo #4 (after you've destroyed certain blocks) but I'm sure most of you know that they are just coins. :) and they'll be used to purchase certain things from shops in the game's world.

Check the icon in the image here. Those coin icons appear  briefly after you've collected a coin, first they zoom in from an 8 x 8 scaled version and to the full form (what you see in the image)  and then they zoom back out while fading away. That may seem insignificant for a blog update (and it is) but I just wanted to brag a bit about the detail I put into those coins.

Look closely and you'll see actual engraved images. Bronze coins have the head of an unnamed earth pony. Silver coins has a full bodied pegasi and gold coins have the head of Celestia.

The styles are inspired from Ancient  Roman Numismatics (I'm a collector in that field ;) - )

I just had to brag about them. :)

More to come soon!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

10-4-11 - A brony on a mission: Getting back on track

I'm slowly starting to get my sleep schedule back on track by avoiding unnecessary naps during the day and I'm also considering my health (starting to do a bit of walking each day and eating healthily)

All those things truly do matter when one is tackling a massive project such as a Metroidvania style game (or anything else).

My slothfulness these paste couple of weeks has slowed me down in development and I'm not at all happy with it so I intend to do something about it.

there's plenty of coffee in the cabinet and my usual daily dosage of Lipton Green Tea in the fridge and I have plenty of videogames to help feed my creative muse. So why am I having such a hard time getting back to production?

Yesterday I've only got just a bit done with SQ (gui graphics) but today I'm going to try and get much more done than I have been lately.

I need all the energy and inspiration I can get if I'm to make this next demo into something epic.

So wish me luck!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Music Inspiration: SNES - JRR Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring pt1

I made a post a good while back expressing how a certain game was inspiring both in atmosphere and in music. This post concerns that same game. I was thinking about using Org Maker for Spike's Quest in game music but the following Youtube videos may have inspired me to aim for better music and sound quality. 

So I'll just leave these right cheer for your enjoyment/opinions. ;)

SNES - LotR Hobbiton Theme:

SNES - LOTR Wasteland Theme

SNES - LotR Cave Atmosphere



for more from this game check out this channel. He/she also has some other nice game soundtracks uploaded there that you could listen to! :)

http://www.youtube.com/user/gbelair3#grid/user/876FDDE7954E14B6

10-2-11 - Inspiration: Tripworld / Still Tinkering / Soon Mah Birthday!

Lately I've been pondering the graphical style for Spike's Quest. And I'd honestly like to have everything in beautifully detailed (like most Metroidvania style games), even though a 16 x 16 tile system can be very limiting when it comes to detail. So I've gone to take a look at other games that seem to master the art in tiled pixel crafting. One game is that of a certain forgotten Gameboy gem: Trip World! This game was never released in the US and they say that its one of the most hard-to-find games out there. But I have it in its rom format. And I can testify that the game is absolutely gorgeous for a Gameboy game!

The game is overly simplistic but the graphics are beautiful and the characters are cuter than kittens. The levels are linear (with a few hidden pathways and other things) I'd totally recommend it if your looking for a game with uber cute pokemon-like critters and game-play that's almost as easy as reciting the alphabet (backwards) but I'm writing this section about the graphics. The original  Gameboy had a limiting palette (4 shades of green) and to achieve beautiful graphics such as what you see in the screenshot here, one much really have allot of patience! The art style here is very similar to what I'd like to do with Spike's Quest, and considering that I have a far grander range of colors to work with, I could certainly achieve this style and possibly much more!

So what you see in the screenshot there is possibly a scaled down preview of what to expect (graphics wise) just imagine it on a larger window with more colors, details and of course, Spike .. and ponies :3

In other news...

these past few days I've just been tinkering here and there. Admittedly I've been rather slothful and lazy (a common phaze that comes and goes) my sleep schedule has been totally out of whack since I pushed myself so hard to get Demo #4 out two weeks ago and I've been trying to get myself back on track ever since.

But I am still working on Spike's Quest... just at a slower rate than usual.

I'd like to try and have the 5th demo ready by the 20th of this month so here's hoping I improve my work rate in the next week or so...

In other not so SQ related news...

my 29th birthday is just 6 days away. I think I'll celebrate it by ordering a pizza and buying a bottle of fine wine. And maybe I'll marathon Ponies too :P

Thursday, September 29, 2011

9-29-11 - Nuthin' but a buncha tweaks

Development Log for yesterday and today (so far):

- Added new collisions for active bombs
- you can now manually fall through the moving platforms (down button + jump)
- coins now bounce
- fixed slope collisions
- ceiling detection bug fixed (kinda)

for the rest of this day I'll be working on:

- finishing up coin collisions
- top status bar
- custom counter system

No video today as there's not much to show off...

stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

9-27-11 - Solving the Shademap Puzzle

Posting a late blog post tonight as there's not much to update on (but I should try to keep y'all updated regardless) At the moment I'm trying to figure out a way that I can apply a shademap to each of the in game maps. If I somehow succeed in doing this I could add a whole new layer of atmosphere to the game. But right now I'm stumped on how to get this thing to work how I want it to...

For it to function properly, I need to somehow mask out the background so that the shademap would only affect over the foreground objects. BlitzMax does have some pretty advanced masking commands but I'm just not sure how to apply them properly.  So currently I'm seeking help with this from the Blitz Community. Its all very slow going atm :P

I hope to get more things done tomorrow! So stay tuned.

Monday, September 26, 2011

9-26-11 - BOMBS! / I've recovered!

video

Today's video showcases the bomb and the bomb blocks which I think looks totally cool while in action! 
I may even make a few little Zelda style secret doorways that you have to bomb to gain access to. Just putting that thought out there for opinions, of course. :)

And in other (good) news, I've recovered from my little shame spell yesterday. The guy who hosts my web storage thought my brony explanation was pretty dang funny (in a good kind of way) and told me to think nothing of it! And with that bit of news I can feel rest assured about continuing to host the test demo downloads at that domain!

I is a happy brony! :D

Sunday, September 25, 2011

9-25-11 - My Bronydom and the game at Risk

> Web service used to store test demos exceeds bandwidth limits
> Contacts the guy who hosts service requesting bandwidth upgrade
> He obliges and then finds out the cause of Bandwidth limit break
> Asks me about the license of the content and feels it could put his service at risk
> I explain to him that the franchise and the company it belongs to doesn't mind
> feels somewhat embarrassed about the game's content and feels obligated to explain the fandom
> writes a huge block of text explaining the fandom and why I'm in the 'herd'
> still waiting for a response with huge knot in stomach
> also hopes he doesn't go blab to my sister or outside friends about it

Is it wrong for me to feel so... ashamed to be a brony right now? :(

In other news I've got more work done on the game and was going to put up a video but the current circumstances has me questioning my bronydom... I hope this feeling fades before morning!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

9-24-11 - Procrastination Can Be Productive!

Ha! This weeks Pony episode was EPIC!

but let's get on with the news...

As you can probably tell by the title, I've been procrastinating since yesterday. Spending some time rearranging my apartment a bit and making some purchases online.

To be fair, the online purchasing was kind of to help me with the production of Spike's Quest, so I was being productive by procrastinating! Go figure :3

So what did I buy? (not that you'd be interested)

This here is a portable desk! I can move it anywhere and use it sitting or lying down which makes production all the more relaxed! (and gives me more reasons to be a complete lazy ass) I can set it up on my bed, my couch, on a nice rug, outdoors, anywhere! Which makes this purchase a very fine investment indeed! Of course, I still cant work on Spike's Quest hanging upside down or under the kitchen sink, but that would just be silly!






For one to develope good games one must PLAY good games! Some may argue with me on this one though. Castlevania Lament of Innocence for the Playstation 2 has been a subject for heavy criticism since its release back in 2003. From what I've seen of the game on an LP a while back, I'd have to say that it looks just perfect as a 3D Castlevania game! Let's see... huge explorable areas? check. Mythical monsters from the underworld? check! Vampires and the vampire killer? check! Yep, its definitely a Castlevania game!

For the most part, while developing Spike's Quest one of the games I've been playing the most was Castlevania Harmony of Dissonance for the Gameboy Advance and the other 2D sidescrolling Castlevania games with the Metroid feel (the graphics on all of them are something to be admired!) But after a while I feel I need a new field of inspiration so I went and purchased Lament of Innocence thinking that it just might help boast my inspiration meter for the game! Can you really blame me?



And for my last purchase of the night I purchased a PSP AV cable for the soul purpose of linking my PSP to a TV. How is this productive? Well as stated already I play games to help me develop games. This would simply just let me play my hacked PSP on a larger screen. The small screen can get a little tiring after a while :P.

Yeah... okay, that doesn't effect much production-wise...

but still!

As far as apartment rearrangements go, I did move my workstation again. This time to my room. Everything's nicely setup once again with all three of my computers placed where I can access them with such ease. I do this to keep things interesting, of course!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Game Boss Log: Phantom Discord

Boss Name: Phantom Discord
Location: Ancient Labyrinth

Inspiration: Inspired from the concept of Phantom Ganon for The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time

Description: Mechanics of this boss fight are still in the brainstorming department. But pretty much this is just a Phantom replica of the sinister troublemaker, Discord. He's a ghostly green in color (and equally, ghostly transparent.) AND he can reverse gravity while shooting spark balls in multiple directions

that's all I have for now...

edit: Oh, and even though it may not be of importance, this will be one of the few elements in the game where I'd use actual recorded sound bytes, borrowing his deep grumbling laugh from the cartoons and the quality cut short so it'd sound as if it were coming from a Gameboy sound card.

9-23-11 - Bending Brigde!/Originality Check


Today's update is a short and simple showcase of a functioning bending bridge system. Not only do the bridges bend but you can also manually fall through them like you can the blue platforms. It may not seem like much but I've spent several hours trying to figure this darn thing out! So enjoy this short video of me bouncing around on the things as if they were trampolines!

In other news, I've decided that once Spike's Quest is finished I plan on taking the engine and using it to make something entirely original! So all yee naysayers out there who criticize me for not being original with this game go boil yer heads! :D (this could also mean I could somehow profit with this engine if used properly.(and by original, I mean not a fan game based off a certain franchise... My OWN ideas dawgs!))

edit: I was kidding about the profiting bit. Y'all can relax! I totally like making freeware stuff ;3 Honestly!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

9-22-11 - Smoothed Jump&fall mechanics/bendy bridge mechanics

Progress so far includes a smoother jump/fall engine and an almost functioning bendy bridge (coded entirely from scratch). The jump bit may not seem evident in the video but now when the jump variable reaches 0, instead of the abrupt fall speed the fall variable now increases from 0 to the max fall speed which makes a perfect jumping arc. also Spike's in the air longer. As for the animation, it may not also seem evident in the video but its there, smoothing the transition from jump to fall :)

the bendy bridge as you could probably tell is still a work in progress and has been so far the biggest headache in development. I hope to get it smoothed out soon and applied to the main engine.
Wish me luck!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

9-21-11 - Youtube Channel

I've quickly thrown together a simple YouTube channel for the purpose of showing off development work and an occasional trailer! Now to install cam studio and tinker with that for a few hours :P

http://www.youtube.com/user/spikesquest

Be sure to subscribe if you dont mind the occasional boring development videos :P

Nothing much new on production as I've been kinda side tracked by some personal things. Expect something cool soon though!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Inspiration - Area: Cave Entrance

Several years ago, back before the internet was popular and I was still in middle school I remember playing a game for the SNES. The Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Rings Part 1 was its label and I both hated and loved it. I loved it only for its brilliant music, its beautiful yet nostalgic graphics and the overall atmosphere of the first couple of areas.One of the major settings was the caves, and it was this setting that intrigued me the most! They were dark, dank and the sounds were distant and echeoy with the occasional distant thud and dripity drops of water. They actually made me feel like I was exploring a mysterious cave system. I especially loved how the lighting system worked in these caves. the closer you got to the big central torches the brighter your player's sprite became! It looked as if you truly were stepping out of the shadows! Oh, if only the game were so graceful in every other element of its existence. But the massive flaws of this game is not why I'm writting this post.

I've always wanted to recreate that feeling of mystery and brilliant nature in my own game, and here comes along Spike's Quest, a game I've come a long way in developing, and thus comes my chance to do work some magic!

I imagine the game starting out with Spike falling through a large hole in the cavern roof and landing with a splash in a small lake. In this one large room there are several pathways but only one you can access as the others would require special items or upgrades to advance through. There would be a couple of large stone lanterns to light certain portions of the cave (and an outside light from the hole in the roof) Also in this particular room there is no music, just the distant creepy echoes of drip drops and the occasional thud. There'd also be a couple of pesky bats waiting to swoop and attack our hapless baby dragon their annoyed squeeks actually echoe along with Spike's movement. Oh, and Pinkie Pie is caged here too which she'll clue you in on some things, but that's getting off topic... anyway, once you leave this area and head into the next, the music actually starts to fade in with a nice brilliant haunting theme.

Yes, I want this game to have an actual atmosphere in music, sound and visuals.

Doesnt that just sound glorious?

Monday, September 19, 2011

9-20-11 - Work Begins Again / The Brony Show

I'm posting this update rather early (before bed) so I wont be so forgetful about things if I were to post it sometimes tomorrow.

First up, The Brony Show!

Test Demo 4 had a nice little short segment of the show last night. Short and sweet, Circuit Mane had some nice words to say about it and I rather enjoyed the humor of the stream's chat while he played it :3 I sorta wish there was more of it on the show but they had plenty of other news and a stream of this weeks MLP. Still, I give them my greatest of gratitude by promoting them on my blog and the Ponychan thread. Thanks guys!

If somepony has never seen their show then I highly recommend you go check it out! http://thebronyshow.net./ they host their shows every Monday at 6pm pacific, 9pm eastern. and if you've missed out you can always watch the recorded streams whenever they're released.

Now on to the maine news.

Me being the CRAZY pony that I am (according to Circuit Mane himself) shall resume work on the project tomorrow! First order of business: to piece together the config file for the game. It wasn't included with Demo 4 because after the switch from Blitz 3D to Blitz Max I had to completely redo it and I honestly have not given myself the time to even do that yet. The config system will allow you to set the control buttons (via keyboard or gamepad) set the screen size and maybe even adjust music and sound volumns. Once I have that working then I shall begin working on the bendie bridge mechanics.

So much to do! And I can hardly wait to do it!

Stay tuned! 

Production Start-Up Log for 9-19-2011

I have been soooo tempted to cut my little break time short and get back to coding! There's so many new things I want to add to the engine, that and newer graphics and some other really awesome things :3

For one, I anticipate working out the working mechanics of a simple bending bridge!  I almost had it figured out once upon a time but I never really applied it to a platformer. This is my big chance!

I'm only continuing my break because later this evening The Brony Show will be hosting a live LP of Demo 4 (http://thebronyshow.net./) and I decided I'd wait until after that moment to resume work on the game.

So indeed, yeah. Production will resume tomorrow!

PS. It seems they did something on Demo #3 a couple months back too.. I've been meaning to check it out.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-18-2011

I've been enjoying my time off. Spent much of that time frequently checking forums, websites and youtube for anything related to the project. so far not much aside from the couple of simple LP's of the demo (which I've documented here)

I'll have to admit, I'm a tad disappointing about the response. true I did enjoy the attention that it did get (and I am very thankful to all of you for sticking with me through the making of it) but I guess I got my hopes up way too high.

For one thing my biggest dissapointment was the EqD post. Dont get me wrong, I love and respect Seth and Cerial for posting my stuff (when I request it).. the disappointment really comes from the timing of the post. the 100th Nightly Roundup of EqDaily got flooded with comments about the latest episode of My Little Pony and the excitement about episode 2 as a whole. All the projects (including Spike's Quest) in the roundup were simply ignored. Overshadowed by our beloved Ponies. I would had gladly joined in with the celebrations if not for my utter disappointment...

But it made me thankful that I didnt wait to release the demo right at that time. or else the demo would had probably been left in the pit of forgetfulness where nopony would had cared to touch it as much as they'd prefer to celebrate the second coming of Ponies.

Despite my disappointments I still feel the urge to keep moving forward with the project. The fandom is still strong and so the purpose of this project is equally just as strong! The few comments I did get about it were all positive comments with good critiques and bug reports. And its that type of attention that urges me on. That and how far the project has come!

When I first posted about the project in Ponychan it was nothing more than a concept. a Metroidvania style game involving our beloved baby dragon, Spike who sets out on a quest to rescue his pony friends. And in the duration of a whole three months that concept evolved into an actual reality! The 4th test demo so far was one of my most greatest accomplishments in game design! And I guess I can say that its one of my first successful games ever created (yes, I'm counting this demo as a completed game ... in a way)

And now my attention has shifted to the sequel of that 'game'. Test Demo #5 I imagine will take the engine several steps further to the actual real game! I see in the future of my hard work: wall sliding and jumping, monkeybars, Donkey Kong style barrel canons, bending bridges, Zelda type items, keys and locked doors, more brilliant puzzles and so much more!

We may even be seeing the end of the old beta tileset (the sci-fi dungeon scenery used in these past four demos) as I plan to begin working on the actual in game tilesets, setting sceneries for the caverns, Ponyville, the forests and other things to be named. And when those tilesets are good and ready I'll launch a sub project that other people can contribute to. And that would be the in game music.

Anyway, that's all the ramblings I have here. As always, stick around and I'll keep updating as I have always been doing! :) These next few weeks are going to be exciting ones!

PS. if you make a play through of any of the demos I ask that you please send me a link so I can add them to the LP list here in the blog! Much thanks! :D

Saturday, September 17, 2011

VerendumGames LP's Demo #4

Another nice little play-through with funny ramblings! Check t out!

SWFlash LP's Test Demo#4

A VERY special thanks and shoutout to SWFlash here for this wonderful playthrough! A warning though, if nopony has played the demo yet, this thing will spoil the heart locations. just a slight warning if you'd rather find them yourself!

Enjoy the demo either way! All playthroughs I know of will get special mentions here! :D

Production Start-Up Log for 9-17-2011

Since the release of Demo #4 I've taken the time off to try and just enjoy myself. Yesterday I spent the free time treating myself to the China buffet across the street from my apartments (my fortune cookie said I looked 'pretty'... lolwat?!?) and then I went for a short little nature walk and then the rest of the day I continued marathoning the complete series of Kevin Sorbo's Hercules while periodically checking every website that I submitted the demo to (so far the most comments on it have come from here and Ponychan, elsewhere it hasn't been very popular) :P

There have been quiet a few bug reports. thankfully not as many as Demo#3 last month. (one person reported that he thinks the file is infected and he cant seem to delete it... but there's only been one report of that... rest assured!)

And the feedback so far has been 100% positive from bronies and none-bronies alike ;) Many people have played it and got the best ending too which pleases me! (I was worried that I might had made the heart piece search a bit too tough in some areas)

The demo will have a spot in Equestria Daily's 'Nightly Roundup' and there will be a Let's Play of it on in Monday's Brony Show (http://thebronyshow.net./) so I still have hope that it'll attract some kind of attention. :)

but the demo being popular or not... the game will continue to progress! I swear to all my fellow bronies that I will continue to work hard on this game and I will make sure it meets completion!

So... for today?

More time off! It is Pony day after all! :D Season 2 is here y'all!

I'll begin work again come Tuesday. I've already got quiet a todo list developed for test demo #5.

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Y'all at least deserve a nice little screenshot ;)

so much has been accomplished. I almost regret to think that its not even done yet!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

On second thought...

Okay, guys, you may hate me for this or you may respect me for it.

I've decided this whole deadline thing is really just killing me

how about I just release the darn thing when I feel its good and ready?

it may take a day or two but at least it will relieve the pressure off me and I can work in total freedom

now this wont mean that I'll be getting lazy on you guys. I'll be working hard at it. but these all nighters are just stressful and I'm sick of worrying about it.

opinions?

One more day please?

I need one more day, guys. Just one more...

I'll be pulling another all nighter (plus the rest of this day) to get it done and I hope to have it ready in the very early morning hours. like around 1 in the morning... yeah.

Have mercy! D:

Production Start-Up Log for 9-14-2011

I'll just say it flat out... I really, truly dont know when this thing will be ready. believe me when I say I've been awake since 9:00am yesterday morning working on it (and before that I only had an hour or two of sleep)

I'm groggy as heck... I've got plenty done no doubt but I still cant shake the feeling that it wont be ready before this evening. ... one thing... there's a problem with it slowing down gradually while playing it and I don't know if its a memory leak in the code or what...

I'm just asking y'all to bear with me on this... you will get this demo one way or another, even if I have to publish it unfinished...

I'm gonna go get some sleep now. I'll start working on it again whenever the heck I wake up. :P

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Delay Cancelled

Disregard the last post. Due to some popular opinions I've decided to release the demo right on schedule... Tommorrow.

Now to double the effort to get it ready!

Production Start-Up Log for 9-13-2011

So a nice brony over on Ponychan suggested that it would be awesome for me to release the demo on the day MLP Season 2 airs... it would in a sense... make that day 20% more cooler

and so I've decided that it was a good idea.

I now have two extra days to cram as much into this demo that I possibly can.

For those of you who might be a bit disappointing by this little delay be of good cheer! I'll be releasing a video with a short preview of what's to be expected :) and the extra time means a great deal.. trust me!

anyway, its 4:03 in the morning... I'm only going to allow myself just a few hours of sleep before starting back up work again

if anypony is worried about my well being here.. worry not. I'm only pushing myself this hard just for this demo release. I want it to be exceptionally good to everypony here since y'all had to wait so long.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-12-2011

Oh, RockStar Sugar Free Energy Drink™ dont fail me now! Your my only hope against the ongoing wearyness that beckons me to stop working! The project must go forward! Coffee is losing its touch and green tea has become like normal water to me... Push me onward RockStar Sugar Free Energy Drink™ and help me to finish the task at hand!

Curse you Star Fox 3D with your fantastic 3D graphics on my 3DS for being so tempting. You tempt me to stop my work so I can play with you for hours no end. But I have defeated your cunning! I MUST ENDURE!

...

Oh great. Now I'm talking to inanimate objects. Have I become Pinkamina? God forbid.

The demo is coming along just fine though :) I have two days to get everything functioning, get the packages built for all three of the os's and set up promotional stuff to e-mail EqD and post on random forums

this is going to be one hell of a week... at least until the 14th which then I hope to just be sitting at my computer repeatedly hitting the f5 button to read comments.

Onwards I must go!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-11-2011

I've actually been working almost nonestop on this demo. Its already pretty dang huge and I'm not even half done with it yet... :P

Is it normal for a game's test demo to become an actual game itself? 'cause that seems to be the actual  case here... I actually have high hopes that somepony might even do a LP of the darn thing. Yeah, its that big. Or I'm just over exaggerating my hard work here :P

But indeed... working nonestop here with the occasional hourly break where I sit down to my Netflix to watch Kevin Sorbo beat the living stew out of mythological creatures.

I wont be updating much between now and release day. Let me point out that even though it is scheduled to be released on the 14th I actually aim to have it finished and ready the day before (the 13th for those who cant count) I want to see this thing released early in the day and hopefully get an early spot on EqD with it.

There's also rumor that it might get played on the Brony Show. not sure about the specifics on that (one of the nice chaps posted in this thread earlier a few days back about it. but that's all I know...)

Anyway, it's 2:36 in the morning and I've been up since 7 yesterday morning coding and putting together graphics.

yeah. my brain hurts.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Soon...


SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES!

Production Start-Up Log for 9-9-2011

I wanted to play the new Star Fox 3D today but it seems my local Wal Mart wont have it til Monday... :(

oh well, On to the news!!!111one

Progress progress progress and MOAR progress :3

Yesterday was a very eventful day. Moving platforms, and the such.

If I keep going at this rate then the demo should totally be ready to meet its deadline.

I'd tell y'all more but I dont want to spoil much.

Let me just say that Demo #4 might be huge when its ready.

Oh, and the game looks awesome on Linux :3

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-8-2011

BEHOLD! my crappy attempt to combine two images together...

from left to right:
1. EeePC Netbook running BlitzMax in Ubuntu
2. behind the netbook:
   - two gamepads
   - empty Lipton Green Tea bottles
   - a fake PSP that runs emulators (hidden)
3. My 12th cup of coffee and three boxes of mint gum
4. Acer 5000 Laptop running Blitz Max on Windows XP
5. A wireless keyboard sitting on top of the Acer
6. Wireless mouse and behind it a real PSP and Nintendo 3DS
7. a 3rd generation PowerPC running BlitzMax on Mac 10.3.9 "Panther"
8. sitting on top of PowerPC is a Wacom Bamboo tablet (best tablet at a cheap price! :D )

you are looking at the new and complete work station being used to work on Spike's Quest.

All three major platforms just now got 20% cooler in 10 hours flat.

/)^ɛ^(\

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-7-2011

I'm feeling a tab bit grumpy... and for good reason.

I'm still stuck trying to get BMax to function correctly on Ubuntu. I've worked with it for hours installing packages through a terminal and I finally had it working only to find out that because I was forced to use a dated none-Intel version of BMax that it wasn't going to build the game for testing for some very complicated reasons...

That's when I glanced over and saw that my little Eee Pc Netbook has Intel Atom. So now I'm working on installing Ubuntu to that laptop and then I'll try my hands at the more up to date BMax on that partition.

I'm grumpy because I've spent all that time trying to get the dratted software to run while I could had been coding the game... -.-

I really just want to have the demo ready for Mac and Linux when its launched next Wednesday... why does it have to be so gosh darn complicated?!?

well hopefully I'll get some code in tonight when all this nightmare is done and over with. :P

Have a sad Pinkie Pie for my suffering.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-6-2011

Made it home yesterday. was a bit tired from the long drive so I took the day off.

today I'm spending a few hours trying to get Blitz Max to work on my mac and I'm trying to install Ubuntu to work on an old laptop so that I can have the demo ready for those platforms come next Wednesday :)

So far I do have the mac version up and running though the code seems to be having problems with the player x and y position at start-up. I'll have to tinker with it when the demo is ready for porting

Ubuntu is honestly being a pain when it comes to installing it on an old laptop but I hope to have it working within the next few hours

once those tasks are done I can then finally get back to working on the game full time!

Its great to be home again. n_n

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-4-2011

I haven't forgot about you guys. I just really haven't had anything to report on.

Progress is still progress and I've been getting things done but nothing really noteworthy :P

As far as news goes:

Due to popular opinion I will be delaying the 4th demo until the 14th. this will be the official release and the last ever delay. I promise. :P

And tomorrow I'm going home! If only this horrid weather from Tropical Storm Lee doesn't mess things up and we dont end up on the side of the road from hydroplaning (however the heck you spell it). :P any of y'all good christian bronies out there set me out a good prayer, k? thx

Friday, September 2, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-2-2011


Today is payday! [/flutteryay] and that means that today I can purchase my official license for BlitzMax. That makes things for this project all the more official and I can feel more at ease about it when posting up the test demos :)

On to other news!

My late night coding is slowly starting to pay off! slowly and surely I'm getting closer and closer to my goal for demo #4. But indeed it is very slow going which brings me to the sour part of today's post...

I SRSLY NEED YOUR OPINIONS ON THE FOLLOWING!!!

Would it disappoint any of you if I said that I may delay the test demo for one more week? I could probably get it out on time, but I cant help but feel that it'll be far from perfect. Crunch time here is making me miserable with worry. One more week would probably be more than enough time to get everything perfect for this release.

If I do delay it, that would move the release date from the 7th of this month to the 14th.

Opinions?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 9-1-2011

Its 3 in the morning and its also the first day of September. I have six days to have that demo ready and I still have a ton of work that needs to be done...

aside from that headache I can happily report that things have been as productive on the game as usual. I spent all of yesterday (and up to now) reorganizing code, cleaning the code up and adding a few little new things here and there.

Check the picture for an animated take on the heart container. Yea, I spent 3 hours working on that image :P

And now I'm going to bed... ;;c_c

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pinkie Pie's Mini Game Booth

In Spike's Quest you can return to Ponyville where Pinkie Pie will have a Mini Game booth. These are just a few of the games that you can actually play there. (note: this post will be updated whenever I actually think up a cool mini game to add. If you have any ideas for a mini game feel free to add it in the comments section! :)
==========================================================================

Name: Pinkie's Balloon Adventure

Description: Inspired by the mini game 'Balloon Trip' from Balloon Fight (on the NES and Gameboy) Pinkie will be floating around the screen dangling from a couple of balloons while the screen scrolls forward. The goal is to dodge electric spiky balls, pop some random free floating balloons and see how far you can make it without getting fried (or drowned in the sea below) The further you go and the more balloons that you pop the higher your score will be! (try to beat the top score!) One hit from the electric spikies and its game over.

Production Start-Up Log for 8-31-2011

Stayed up late again tweaking the dialog system. I now have a working yes/no prompt and a few other simple goodies that improve the flow of the dialog. Also done dome heavy graphics work that makes this system all the more visually pleasing ;)

Next few days will be crunch time meaning I'll be trying to work more harder and faster on the game in order to get things ready for the 4th demo which is due out in 7 days. That deadline alone is what's got my nerves in a huge knot... I hope I'll have everything ready by then. If I dont I may have to delay. but let's pray it'll never have to come down to that. :P

On a positive note, I've got just a few more days before I get to go home! :D I'm a happy brony.

er... I hope my apartment hasnt burned down or got robbed while I was away this past whole month D: that would suck!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-30-2011

Oh what the heck? Ponychan's offline? o.o It seems the service is having some issues and the admin needs to use some migration tool... I hope this doesnt effect my production thread there...

EDIT: Nevermind, its back up now. :P

On to the update...
I have succesfully put together an in game text system that allows me to use a custom font from a PNG file. this of course would be used for dialog, reading signs and in game prompts. I stayed up til 3 this morning working on it. Now all that's left for this function is to creat a border and a few other little things.

That's all I have for now.

cheers!


Last Edit: I'll have to brag a bit. I designed the font myself :3 while to some that may seem a small achievement, but to me its not everyday that I get to put my font designing abilities to the test.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-28-2011

This is probably one of the greatest updates I've made in a long while. Some major accomplishments have been made on the game and I need to brag about it. :3

First up, I've finally got a descent screen resolution system working. I had it working just fine before the BMax transfer but after that (and the grand majority of this month) I've been working with a tiny little game window. Now you can resize it or even go full screen with it! So far the new system has been tested on two computers and works on both w/ no problems.

Second major update, the game is now compatible with a PC game pad (see crappy pic)! :D that and I'm just a few steps closer to piecing together a custom keyboard scheme so y'all wont be stuck with one setup. In Demo #4 you will be able to pick what keys to use for jumping, shooting and moving around.

So, with those two major things in working order I need to start working on the new config system so y'all can set this stuff up to your liking ;)

More to come soon!

(and sorry for the crappy picture... the Nintendo 3DS camera really has been disappointing me lately...)

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Random Test Post


According to Blogger Stats, I get quiet a few page views daily, but I'm never really too sure whether I should trust those readings. So to feed my curiosity I'm making this post to see if all those page views arent some kind of spambot clusters or if they are actual human individuals.

To do this, I'll borrow a post concept from Equestria Daily that seems to generate certain interest...




You are now Gummy the Alligator... Wat do?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-27-2011

Its not even the 27th yet but I wanted to post this early anyway to get it off my shoulders , so here we go :P

I've been doing some thinking and I cant help but feel that the code is a complete and redundant mess. Yes, it works, and it feels so much more advanced than what it did over a month ago. But its still a huge mess and filled with many redundancies and unused variables.

That's why I've decided that after the 4th test demo, I'm going to be rewriting huge chunks of it to make it look more cleaner and readable. Most of the planned rewrite is for the map system entirely, the player controls and tile collision system are both perfect as they are but I may could touch them up as well.

That being said, I predict that that project may be a few days hard work, but since I'll be home by then I wont have any distractions from family to slow me down. You might not see a 5th test demo until a month after the 4th release...

But Once this project is complete I am strongly considering making it completely open source for the coding curious so I'd like to at least make it easy to understand :) It'll be well worth the extra time!

Also I plan to translate it to Lua script so that I can port it to the PSP as a homebrew project. So a nice clean code here would be very helpful when it comes to that project :)

Opinions?

edit------------------------

And a final note before I go to bed...

This is possibly some potential bad news for Linux users... I may or may not be able to get tdemo #4 ported to Linux in time before the official release date. I've been doing a bit of reading up and apparently its not easy to port the game without some additional coding.

But dont take my word for it just yet. I dont currently have a Linux OS on hand to attempt anything and I wont have one until I get back home in just a few days so there may still be some hope.

I'm really hoping that the Mac port wont be such a bother as well. :P

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Main Six Pony Log

In this little adventure, Spike must rescue all six of his Pony friends. Each pony will have her own purpose to the game. Below are the descriptions of their purposes and the order that Spike must rescue them in.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Pony: Pinky Pie
Rescue Order: 1st
Boss Rescued From: None

Game Notes: Pinkie's rescue is almost instant from the start of the game. Upon falling down into the cave's entrance you'll see her cage dangling from a low ceiling. From here, she'll begin to instruct you in a few ways of the game and how you can rescue her. As the story goes, her rescue is the easiest and the first because the Diamond Dogs found her to be exceedingly annoying (yes, even more annoying than Rarity's whining) so they caged her up and left her at the cave's entrance. Pinky's purpose throughout the game is to be to Spike what Navi is to Link in Zelda. She'll pop in from time to time to clue you in about how to do certain things or maybe even give you a few clues about the other Pony's whereabouts. Also once you find your way back to Poyville you'll find that she set up shop where you can play several little mini games.

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Pony: Applejack
Rescue Order: 2nd
Boss Rescued From: Undecided

Game Notes: After rescuing Applejack you can return to Ponyville where she'll have her little apple shop and from there you can purchase apples and apple related goods that would benefit your health throughout the game. Aside from that she doesn't serve much purpose other than to occasionally move the story along with a few tidbits of knowledge.

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Pony: Fluttershy
Rescue Order: 3rd
Boss Rescued From: Undecided

Game Notes: Once rescued Fluttershy can be summoned via the Magic Flute. But her abilities can be a bit limiting. Basically it goes like this... throughout the caverns you may actually run across some nasty baddies whom you simply cannot defeat with any weapon or device. They wont attack you but rather they'll keep their position and block certain paths that you'll need to gain access to. Summon Fluttershy and let her work her magic. They'll certainly move for her! :3 Also you might walk into locations that seem to have some horrible dark and evil vibes to them. Fluttershy's magic can calm these settings and you may actually find a nice item or two once the darkness has been lifted.

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Pony: Twilight
Rescue Order: 4th
Boss Rescued From: Undecided

Game Note: Upon rescuing Twilight you gain access to her personal library (in Ponyville) and you can summon her via the Magic Flute to move certain blocks or obstacles that have her cutey mark emblem on it (these either open passages or create new platforms to hard to reach areas)

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Pony: Rainbow Dash
Rescue Order: 5th
Boss Rescued From: Undecided


Game Note: After rescuing Dash you can summon her via the Magic Flute which then she'd suddenly fly across the screen snatching Spike along the way. And then the map screen will come up giving you a selection of certain locations that she could drop you off at. She simply serves as a method of teleportation. Of course, the locations would first need to be discovered by Spike before being added to the teleport list.


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Pony: Rarity
Rescue Order: 6th
Boss Rescued From: Undecided


Game Note: As suggested by a fan recently I've decided to make Rarity the last pony that you rescue because in the cartoons she is a kind of love interest to Spike. As to how she may help you along the rest of the game is undecided. At one point I figured I'd just make her function a little 'extra' in that she'd actually throw together some cool little outfits for Spike. But the problem that I dont find the use of armor defense a necessity for this game has me a little puzzled about how these outfits could be of any use.

Extra Note: One of the costumes I pictured for Spike would pay homage to Link's tunic and cap from Zelda.


Production Start-Up Log for 8-25-2011

For this morning's little showcase I have for display is the heart system located at the top left of the screenshot there.

So what's so nifty about it? well, they function just like the hearts in Zelda for one, meaning 11 of those heart pieces have to be collected. you originally start with 3 heart pieces in the game and you gradually level up with additional ones throughout the game.

I believe that I'll actually make that a challenge in the 4th test demo. y'all will get to go on a little scavenger hunt trying to locate all additional 11 heart containers whilst exploring an extensive map and avoiding obstacles (and other things)

Did I mention that the each heart piece also consist of 4 pieces and the current heart flashes (making it visually easier to see)?

:)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-24-2011

Added a simple explosion animation for the item blocks for after Spike destroys them and then tinkered around with the sound effects again.

will be adding a health bar today.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-23-2011

the game's sound folder is currently junked up with random bleeps and bloops and the code could probably also use a little sprucing up as well but its all good, really :)

Added a hazard system so now Spike can get hurt. Currently the only existing hazards are spikes (on ceilings walls and floors) but despite the ability to lose health, Spike still cant die yet. That would only require just a few additional lines of code, a death sequence and a restart prompt screen.

Aside from the hazard system, there really isnt much else to report on. I've tweaked the code here and there, added a few new tiles to the beta tileset and edited my todo list.

Maybe I'll get enough done today to have something worth showing off tomorrow, but no promises...

In other news, I only have 9 to 10 more days before I get to go home [/flutteryay]. And I'm really excited about the most recent Pony updates for season 2. I'll be stocking up on M&Ms, Popcorn and cream soda for each new episode :) Who else is excited?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-22-2011

Yesterday was a day for much work and progress :)

You can now crouch and crawl under narrow spaces in the game. Unfortunately you still cant shoot flame while you crawl and I'm still not sure how I'm going to fix that. Fact is, the keyboard is a very limiting device and only so many key presses can be detected at once. The problem wont exist with a gamepad however.

Once after I finished the crouch and crawl functions I then advanced the flame breathing function. What was once just a static red oval is now a flaming projectile with a neat-o looking particle tail (still needs work, but it looks effective for now )

Also while enhancing Spike's flame breathing ability I started to get the idea of acquiring different types of flame breathing techniques. With Spike being a young dragon and all flame breathing will be his primary weapon throughout the game. One of the flame upgrades he'll pick up in the game is Ice Breath which would enable him to shoot cold fire that would freeze his enemies. This would function like the weapon upgrade system in Metroid pretty much. :P

I'll post a log about the many fire breathing upgrades later on. But for today I have other plans for production time. I'll keep you all posted as things begin to progress! :)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Spike Crawls!

See Spike crawl!

okay, it aint perfect yet but it'll do for the time being. thr animation is kinda smooth though and I'm 'somewhat' proud of it :)

Production Start-Up Log for 8-21-2011

> puts in some code for crouching
> crouching code successful. adds additional code for crawling
> crawling code half done, hits a snag where player cant seem to shoot fire while crawling
> spends several hours trying to solve problem
> head desk after figuring that the program may actually have a keyhit limitation ('down' key[crouch] + 'left'' or 'right' key[crawl] + 'shoot' key may be too much to detect all at once)
> hopes my figuring is wrong. consults help from Blitz Basic community

oh the joys of programing... :P

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Production Start-Up Log for 8-20-2011

Alright, so I've had my fun and now its time to get back to work. today I'll be adding new entity functions such as springs, that health system I promised a few days ago, a counter function that would enable me to create a counter with an image font and use it to display item quantities, a new jump and gravity system, a hazard system, a door system that would link maps together and possibly a brand new tile-map specifically for the game and an entirely reworked config system since the BMax settings are almost entirely different from the B3D settings...

I have my work cut out for me and I have a deadline to have a working demo by the 7th of next month.

Wish me luck! I'll need all I can get of it!