Posted in StevenDPodcast

Steven D Podcast Episode 15: Bob the Blind Man Gets a Taste of the Real World


Meet Blind Bob. Well, he prefers Bob, but we just won’t tell him that I called him that. 😀

In today’s episode, I play two games wherein our little friend Bob tries some rather interesting ways of getting around. First he takes a nice, not so peaceful little stroll through the world of Blinded Guide, a funny little game made by L-Works. Without so much as a cane or a guide dog, Blind Bob decides to first walk, then gradually speed up to a full on run, through a sidewalk littered with lethal obstacles. And I, equally blind, get the pleasure of guiding our adventurous little friend!

And then as if that wasn’t enough, Bobby decided to go and drive a car for whatever reason, and use it to plow down some cones. I’m sure you can guess that this is not the careless joyride he was looking for, but I doubt you can guess why. Let’s just say that the people in Oriol Gomez’s Danger on the wheel, really value their traffic cones – and knocking them down can and will have dire consequences.

Yeah. I bet you can already see what’s coming before even checking this episode out. Too bad Bob didn’t.

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Posted in StevenDPodcast

Steven D Podcast Episode 14: When it All Falls Down (bk3, part 3)


Ep 14

Let me tell you a story: there was once a mayor of a tiny little town under attack who said, “Find a safe place if you don’t want to die.”

And then, he died.

Listen to this rather amusing part 3 of my BK3 playthrough, as I complete the rest of stage 2 and most of stage 3.

Flying lamps? Oh yeah, plenty of those here.

What about bouncing desks that do damage by jumping up and landing on your head? Uh… yeah… those are here too for some reason.

Also, how can a swarm of bees drop glass light bulbs on to peoples’ heads? I guess that also begs the question, how many bees does it take to unscrew a light bulb?

Perhaps most amusing though are the security carts whose idea of stealth is to cut their engines so you can’t hear them — while you’re already attacking them. Apparently they didn’t get the memo that playing possum spares nobody from the tantrum throwing, lightening conjuring, shotgun blasting, evil psychotic maniac mayor aptly named King Godlord.

All of these can be found, and more, in this epic part of our adventure! As a bonus, something extremely amusing occurs that puts our “good hero” in his place. I just won’t say what it is or when it happens — you’ll have to listen to find out!

Need to catch up?

Posted in average, busy, gaming and technology, happyness, information, journal, life, programming, projects, updates

Rewrites and an Audio Demo


Hey guys,
Steve here.

There I go again, with the whole not blogging for over a month thing. The problem is, I have been wanting to blog for at least the last week and a half… but then again it might be better that I waited this long to because some important things have happened recently that I would prefer to have gone in this post.

As I’m sure you could tell by the steady decline of enthusiasm I displayed towards S Quad Racing, and the increasing lack of work being done on it, I was definitely becoming unhappy with it. Since I’d started working on it so early, I didn’t know much about the language I started coding it in, causing me to do numerous things the wrong way, something I wouldn’t find out until the game really started taking off. By November, when I was trying to really ramp up the features, I realized that my code was pretty much just patched together, close-ended, buggy, and virtually unusable.

So, the last week of Christmas break, I finally decided to rewrite the entire game. There were still parts I copied from the old version, such as ambiance, playlist, checkpoint, and obstacle support, but everything else was completely scrapped.

After just a week of coding, I had a fully functional game. And when I gave it to my testing team, the bugs they found were only minor, easy to fix ones that usually resulted from forgotten or wrongly written lines of code. I’ve spent the last week fixing those, leaving only some minor bugs I just found out today. But thankfully, those that are occurring now are not the irreparable ones found in the old version, as I am more able to fix them now that I have a workable code base.

In other news, S Quad Racing is not the only project receiving a rewrite. Matt the Terrorist’s engine is receiving a rewrite as well, going from a 2d side scrolling game to 3d. The code base for this was not mangled like the old S Quad Racing, however it didn’t really have much in the way of flexibility, I.E. Implementing 3d support into it would have been next to impossible due to the y coordinate being used for up and down movement among other things.

Plus, since this game is not completely user friendly due to the keyboard layout, –we have keys for movement for forward, backward, left, right, up, and down, there are two keys (one for the left arm and one for the right), plus whatever keys will need to be added in future, I thought to add a keyboard configuration option. The way the keys will work in this new version are w a s and d for directional movement, r and f for up and down, (climbing ladders and controlling your jet pack), left and right shift being held down for the respective arms, enter to throw items, i to deposit them into inventory, and space to place. However, due to the complaints that will likely come about due to this rather odd key configuration, I’m working on a way for all aforementioned keys to be customized.

Aside from that, I’m really interested to see how three dimensional building will turn out in an audio only game. I don’t suspect it will be different from other audio games in terms of navigation, but we’ll just have to see, since the player will actually be constructing 3d structures without being able to feel or have them described to them.

That concludes tonight’s post, mostly anyway. Since I promised audio demos, I’ll provide this one for S Quad Racing since the Matt the Terrorist engine test is not in much of a playable state at the moment. Enjoy.

Play

Thanks for reading,
type you later,
Steve.

Posted in life, stories

Flee, Flee


Hey guys,
Steve here.

I wrote this up for a number of reasons. I hope you enjoy it. It may not make sense to any of you, but if it does, awesome. If not, I hope you enjoy it anyway.

Flee, flee,
hiding in a tree.
Flee, flee,
what is it you see?
Flee, Flee,
What will it be?
Will you show your face, or will you hide from me?
Flee, Flee,
coming down the tree.
The bark is rough, beneath your feet.
But Flee, Flee,
don’t you see?
The feast that awaits is yours to be!
But flee, Flee,
no longer in the tree,
won’t get your boon, cowering before the beast.
Flee, flee,
the food you seak,
Can be yours, if you will just come and eat.

Posted in busy, gaming and technology, journal, programming, projects, updates

S Quad Racing: Gears, Track Building, and A Bit of Rewriting


Hey guys,
Steve here.

Despite what the absence of an audio demo that “should’ve” been released nearly a month ago might seem to imply, I have not neglected, or in fact been lying, about the current status of S Quad Racing. While there has been days when I haven’t worked on the game, (maybe even too many), I’m happy to report that development is still underway.

First of all, I’ve begun to rewrite and organize parts of my code. While the initial reason for doing such was to make the code a bit more readable, upon further inspection of what I previously had and after a bit of brainstorming on the gears system I discovered that my code was unintentionally designed so that any major changes, I.E. the implementation of things such as vehicles, gears, surface types, and other structured objects was out of the question, due to the way I’d programmed most of the game in its early stages in an effort to create a simple environment in which I could get a little taste of what I wanted S Quad Racing to ultimately be.
Now, though, the game has become more complex, grounds for a bit of a rewrite.
The following is a list of reasons I couldn’t possibly produce that audio demo, at least not tonight and maybe not even tomorrow:

  • I ended up organizing the code into separate files, and if I compile now I am bound to get some errors due to procedures not being declared and such and will likely have to make adjustments accordingly.
  • I’ve added a lot of new code that hasn’t been tested yet due to my not having finished making adjustments to the code.
  • I found a new bug. If you add a turn, and then strengthen or weaken it by adding another turn with greater or lesser severity right after it without first having a straight section, the game will not announce the name of the turn due to a bit of code I added without thinking, again, about the future. However, this one should be easy to fix.

    With all that said, there is good news to report. The above mentioned new code deals a lot with the gearing system, and I’m happy to report that I found and coded a solution that will work for this!
    In addition, I came up with a new idea to manage speed, and have implemented it as a result. This new way is not only future proof, but way more practical in terms of balance, as it basically tells the game how to handle each and every individual speed that a car can travel, without me ever having to touch it again. While you are unlikely to notice much of a difference when the new demo is released, the gears and ability to select different vehicles are bound to catch your attention.

    That concludes tonight’s post. Once all the code is sorted out I’ll likely be releasing two audio demos; one being on the track builder only, the second demonstrating the new gears system and ability to race with different vehicles.

    Thanks for reading,
    type you later,
    Steve.

  • Posted in busy, gaming and technology, journal, life, programming, projects, updates

    Interesting Game Development Updates


    Hey Guys,
    Steve here.

    So I’ve had an idea for a rather unique track building system for S Quad Racing, and it is quickly becoming reality. In this track builder, which is nearly complete as far as current game functionality goes, users are offered two ways of building tracks.

    When a user first begins editing a track, they are placed at the starting line, and the builder is in driving mode. In driving mode, the builder works exactly how the game portion works, minus opponents. There is one difference, however. While driving in the builder, a user can hit the P key at any time to enter pause mode. When in pause mode, the car, and all obstacles, are frozen in place on the track. In addition, the turning keys are not used to move the car; instead, they are used to add turns to the track. The idea, is that a user can add either a left turn or right turn of any severity to the track, by pressing the corresponding arrow keys. For example: pressing left arrow once will set the turn type to easy, twice will make it moderate, a third press of the key will start a hard left turn, and the fourth and final press of the key will begin a hairpin left, the sharpest turn possible in S Quad Racing.
    When the user has selected the type of turn they want to insert, they would press P to enter back into driving mode, and their car would enter the turn, just as if they were encountering it in the race portion. When the user felt the turn was long enough, they could end it by first entering pause mode, and then pressing the opposite arrow key (if they were working on a left turn, for example, they would press right arrow), until they heard the words “go straight.” Upon entering back into driving mode, they would find that their car was no longer in a turn.

    While I’m sure my explanation confused some of you to no end, an audio demonstration of the system will be released within the next week, which should help to clear up some of the confusion.

    The second way to add turns to tracks, (the less confusing, more familiar way), is to use the built in track edit menu. This menu can be accessed only within pause mode, by pressing m. Using this menu, players can add or remove turns, change track settings, as well as build structures. The way turns are added in this menu is that the user keys in the start and end position the turn is to be placed on the track, and then the type of turn it is they are adding. As this is the more familiar approach in most other racing games, I figured I’d add this as an option.

    Still, even if the user chooses not to use the build-as-you-go method, they can still use driving mode to test and make sure their turns are placed exactly how they want them, making this a unique, flexible, easy to use system.

    Besides the track builder, I took out obstacle functionality for the moment. Obstacles are still in the game, but nothing happens if you or an opponent runs over them, as I have new ideas that are, in my opinion, far better than the systems I’d previously implemented. In addition, I finally encrypted all character data, to prevent people from going in and setting their stats to cheat their way through the game.
    As it currently stands, S Quad Racing will soon be ready for early testing, which comes as a relief to me, because after 5 months I’m about ready for people to at least try out my work.

    Coding aside, I’ve had quite a good couple of weeks. Besides it being Summer of course, I spent the first half of the week hanging out with my friend, and the rest of the time I’ve been doing a lot of sleeping in, working out, and, of course, GAMING!

    Thanks for reading,
    type you later,
    Steve.

    Posted in average, busy, gaming and technology, happyness, information, journal, life, projects, updates

    An Audio Editing Experiment and Some Updates


    Hey guys,
    Steve here.

    I know it’s been a bit longer than ten days since my last post to this blog, and I’m sorry about that. Fortunately, this period of extended silence has not been counterproductive.
    First of all, I generated an audio file. This was originally supposed to be an oscillation of about fifty different sound waves going up and down the frequency scale–an attempt to annoy people. However, after some heavy editing, and by that I mean using eighty percent of the audio affects in audacity, I was able to turn it into… a “Sci-phi frequency storm gone bad!”

    I’ll admit it’s a bit annoying, but it’s one of the most captivating things you’ll ever listen to! That is, if you actually listen to it.

    Moving on, after all that work I did on S Quad racing last week, I mostly fixed the winning system. It is now possible to win races and lose them respectively, that is, if you only race with one opponent. Even though I haven’t figured out why the game won’t work properly with multiple opponents, I will be releasing an audio demo by Wednesday that demonstrates a fully working race!

    Also on the subject of gaming, I returned to the swamp universe last week, though I haven’t been quite as addicted as I was in the past. Don’t get me wrong, Swamp is still by far the best game I’ve ever played, but I for one don’t want to end up having to renew my account at the same time I pay for the website, and not to mention I have a game to code.
    By the way, speaking of games to code, I might just have a small surprise in the works. This is far less substantial than S Quad Racing, but, judging by your reactions to Flamity Flame, it has the potential to get quite a few of you hooked for several minutes, or even hours, perhaps. Stay tuned!

    That concludes the posting for tonight. Stay tuned for updates and/or releases on that “secret surprise,” and be looking out for the next podcast episode, which might just be my demonstration of Psycho Strike, the new Grand Theft Auto-like rpg from VG Storm and Blastbay Studios.

    Thanks for reading,
    type you later,
    Steve.