Curious about time tracking because with my tracking I hit maybe 3 to 4 hours a day of actual output, which seems crazy low to me? Not sure. (Today)
2015 - 9 - 17 / 12:09 pm / general
My travels for the year still have not ended! As it turns out I'm currently in the process of moving, so everything is at least a little bit chaotic. I'm staying with friends just going to coffee shops with my laptop to work on stuff, and in that way it still feels like I'm on the road even though I'm just a few miles away from where I used to live.
I'm using this time to focus on my platforming prototype for now and totally neglecting almost every other project I have spun up. I suppose at some point I'll do a review blog post to go over the status of all my projects.
Most of what I've been working on is the core "physics" of the platforming stuff. I'm referencing Matt Thorson's technique for most of what I've been working on. One of the things I'm playing with transferring momentum from the platforms to the player when the player stops being a passenger for the platform.
I'm slightly referencing the memory of the Mega Man X games for this which have a little bit of this when you jump out of a moving mech. You keep the platform's speed with you until you collide with something.
On top of that I'm working on slopes, which can be a huge pain in the butt most of the time. It's easy to get them going, but then a lot of the simple assumptions that are made with the physics engine get a little more complex. It's no longer the case that a player is against a wall to the right if they have a slope next to them, and all that kind of stuff.
Whenever I work on a platformer system I always think of the past however-many platformer systems I've made and how they're all pretty much the same. I've more or less been making the same platforming engine since Bonesaw: The Game and I've just been slowly refining it over the years. I still run into a lot of the same issues whenever I go through it which is like some sort of weird Groundhog Day type nightmare, but platformers are the most fun thing to work on (I think) so it's totally worth it.
2015 - 9 - 8 / 12:14 pm / general
I'm almost at the end of my great travels in the Pacific Northwest, and I've spent a lot of time just jamming on some metroidvania type stuff in Otter. Yeah, I know I probably shouldn't be always starting up new projects when I have a bunch of other projects that still need to be finished, but I think right now I've just decided to do whatever makes me feel good and right now that's make some metroidvania game systems.
I spent some time redoing most of what I had for the map system to enable the ability to have weird shaped rooms. The most common case of a weird shaped room is an L, and more rare than that might be an O shape, but beyond that now nearly any shaped room is possible. After I got that working I changed some of the guts of the code around to support rooms overlapping each other's bounding boxes, so that a 1x1 room can exist inside of a 3x3 O shaped room.
Going back to the desert in just a few days and I'm not sure what I'll be working on when I get back, but for now I'm having fun with this thing.
2015 - 9 - 4 / 11:50 am / general
After my time in the four days of sickness and chaos known as PAX I hopped on a bus with wifi that dropped me off in Canada. I'm chilling out at the indie house of Vancouver for the next few days and working on some various game related things.
I have way too many game projects spun up already but this week while I'm in Canada I wanted to spend all of my time on a new prototype and work on some things related to Otter. I'm spinning up a little metroidvania style thing.
I still have Super Sky Sisters, the island game, a dice game, and now this all in the mix... but I tend to just work on whatever thing I feel strongest about at any given time, which now happens to be a metroidvania. At least I do plan on sharing the source for the metroidvania system I made for Otter so that anyone else out there using it can work on their own. I am using Ogmo, and so far just one class that links all the levels together based a position usually set by the player entity.
2015 - 8 - 20 / 9:41 am / general
It seems like 2015 is really flying by and once again I'm trying to figure out what happened to it! Obviously I have kind of shifted my priorities again to maintain some sort of sanity and happiness. What started out as a year of working on the island game tentatively titled Stratoforce has turned into working on a bunch of smaller stuff. The stress of working on one big thing for a long time got to me so I took a break, and now that break is pretty extended.
I'm still working on finishing Super Sky Sisters which is probably 98% done at this point. There's just a few more things to do, like figure out how I'm releasing it. I've gotten a lot of feedback from people that suggests I should put it on Steam or something, but that honestly sounds like more trouble than it's worth. My current plan is to release on itch.io for a small amount of dollars.
Other than that I'm working on a prototype involving dice. I've posted some gifs and such of it from time to time. I haven't spent a super long time on it yet so there's no real game yet, but I've been trying to figure out how to make rolling digital dice feel cool and not like a chore.
I currently have a contract gig that is taking up some of my time. I'm doing some character art and level tile art for an upcoming indie game that for now I don't think I can say what it is, but it is pretty cool to work on!
On top of that I'm still trying to flesh out all the examples I can for Otter. I think pretty soon I'll be able to call it version 1.0 and figure out what I want to do with it after that. I have tinkered around with some other frameworks and engines, but I still always go back to Otter... I just wish it were easier to export to Mac and Linux.
I think that covers everything! I'm staying busy, still just living that indie life I suppose. Eventually I will have to buckle down and release a new proper game, but for now I still think I'm having fun and keeping my emotional health up which can be very important. Working on small projects that have no expectations is way more comfortable for me, but I know that eventually that won't be paying my bills.
2015 - 7 - 25 / 6:35 pm / otter
I want to keep the Otter example train rolling until I manage to flesh out enough examples to cover all the basics of making a game. The newest example covers animating sprites using a quick example sprite sheet from the Spriter's Resource.
The example with all of the code and required image is available right here.
Also a reminder: if you're using Otter actively make sure to stop by the forums, or sign up for the relatively new Otter Slack Team. There's actually quite a bit of activity happening in the Slack, and recently one of the Otter community members posted a new GUI suite of components to use in your Otter made games!
2015 - 6 - 4 / 3:21 pm / general
Hey I'm being productive! Mostly. I'm still 'crastinatin' on the animations I have yet to do for Super Sky Sisters, but I am now getting some final stuff done on other aspects of it. I've been tackling some of the sounds lately and throwing in some temporary music so I can set up the music management system.
For sounds I'm turning to a new program I found on the internet called LabChirp. It's similar to the great and eternal BFXR, but it creates a different style of sound that's (to me) more akin to the old console sound chips.
In other news I'm also working on the balance of the game. I've gone through and tweaked a lot of the game events in regards to how they grow more difficult over time, and I've also done some reworking of the difficulty levels that can be selected at the start of the game. My goal is to have a single play session last around 10 minutes, and during those 10 minutes I want the player(s) to be able to defeat all three of the game's bosses.
Hi there, my name is Kyle, and I'm a kid disguised as a grown up. I'm making video games and living the indie game developer life in Tempe, Arizona. Here you will find my thoughts, games, websites, doodles, and other stuff like that. I worked on Snapshot, Offspring Fling, and a whole bunch of other games. I also created and maintain Otter, a 2d game making framework. If you want to get a hold of me use the form on the bottom of the page, leave a comment, or just tweet at me. I try to post three times a week. Thanks for stoppin' by! You're the coolest.
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Do you want to make a Let's Play of one of my games, or a just a video featuring footage of my games? You have my full permission to do so! Even if you are monetizing your videos, you still have my full permission to use any footage from any of my games. Go for it!