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2014: A Pretty Weird Year Part I

2014: A Pretty Weird Year Part I
I feel like 2014 has been a pretty strange year for me. It's been a long time now since both Snapshot and Offspring Fling came out and it's pretty crazy how fast time seems to be moving lately. Snapshot took three years to make and it felt like the longest three years ever, and halfway through 2015 it will be three years since we finished the game. It's also going to be three years since Offspring Fling came out... madness.

Anyway, let's recap the year and see if I managed to actually do anything worthwhile!


I spent half of January last year at Steam Dev Days up in Seattle. Dev Days was a conference put on by Valve I think mostly to promote their new Steam Machines idea that was going to do battle with consoles or something like that. Ever since then we haven't really heard much about the whole Steam Machines idea though... so I don't really know what happened to that.

The conference was fun though and I got to spend some quality time with some Seattle area friends. Afterwards I got to bounce up to Vancouver to visit my lovely friends at Indie House (not to be confused with Indie House AZ.) I spent my time up there working on the beginnings of Stratoforce. I spent a lot of this month developing some of the core systems that I think the game will use.



This month was spent a little bit working on some first pass art for Stratoforce.


I also ended up joining Tumblr as another place to post my doodles to. I spent part of this month working on getting Spine animations implemented in Otter, and also made a quick example game showing off some of the basic features of the framework.


This month I also remember being plagued by insanely bad sinus problems. While I was in Seattle in January I had developed some pretty bad sinus headaches. They were probably the worst head aches I've ever experienced, and this made it pretty hard to sit down and work on stuff. I still don't have any idea as to what was causing it, but I know that I do have pretty bad sinuses that often cause me various troubles like this.

Also in February the super smash hit mobile game Threes! came out, and I had the distinct honor and privilege of providing the voice for Torvus: Number 48. My girlfriend Corey also appeared in the game as Number 24. We recorded our dialogue on her mac book one night before going to sleep and somehow it sounded good enough to be included in the game!


March is a pretty crazy month usually since it's when Game Developers Conference takes place and I spend a week in San Francisco with a bunch of awesome people. For the conference I stayed with a bunch of people from all over the world in a huge place we found on AirBnB. I spent a lot of time just hanging out with awesome people and eating a crazy amount of good food. I'm not really sure how much appeal GDC has for me anymore outside of those things. Going to sessions for the Independent Games Summit is fun, but the main conference is just too expensive to go to for a little ole indie developer like me.

Later that month I was working on more artwork for Stratoforce and even more featrues for Otter. I managed to implement coroutines into the engine with some help from Chevy. Coroutines are amazing and have been a huge help for me (especially in game jams.)


I should also mention there was a big TowerFall tournament at the end of the week of GDC. It was a 32 person 1v1 tournament with some pretty serious players. At the very end it came down to myself and my friend Will in the final set. It was an awesome experience since both of us were from Phoenix, and all we wanted to do was prove that the Phoenix area had the best TowerFall metagame. Ultimately it was I, the Assassin Prince who claimed victory.

March is also the time where Offspring Fling was in a Humble Weekly Sale which a bunch of cool games supporting open source development tools.


The weekly sale was a huge success, and it's crazy to me that Offspring Fling is able to provide me with the means to cover my living expenses. I feel incredibly fortunate that both Offspring Fling and Snapshot were successful enough to allow me to keep pursuing my dream of making video games.


So far so good... but I think looking back on it my progress on everything is so slow! I don't feel like I got anything done in 2014, and thinking back on the year is a little stressful for that reason. I guess I'll find out if that's really the case... stay tuned for Part II!
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