essay

Where’s the fun?

games. video games.

I’ve been caught up in the last few weeks with the planning, designing and programming of games. Yes, games. Video games to be more exact. I have been trying to recreate, emulate or otherwise resurrect all those ideas I’ve had in my head from years of gaming.

Do you remember playing something and thinking “What if they changed this?” or “I could do that.” I’ve been trying to take all those little strings of thought and weave together some interesting projects.

harder than it seems

It’s one thing to say you can make a game. It’s quite another… miracle to actually make something worth playing. I’ve been at this for a couple of months now and I’ve only manged to make a few proof of concept… things. I have a clone of Canabalt that doesn’t quite work, a shoot-’em-up where the bullets never leave and a Jezball project where the balls occasionally leave the screen.

while(true)

“The ship moves. After two hours of work… the ship now moves.”

After the small victories is where you have to celebrate. Like short jolts of joy, you have to take a win when it happens. Try to think, plan or dream too big and the experience becomes too hard to fathom, the project Too Big. I have learned this.

I have looked at the monoliths that are the games I play on the PC or Xbox 360 and been in awe. Teams did this? You will get a profound appreciation of the time and talent needed to make a Video Game when you try for a few hours to get a small sprite to move around on the screen.

good enough.

That has become my new mantra in a great deal of my recent work.

I don’t have the time nor ability to make the Art look nice. A box with a circle in it will have to be the enemy.  The ship will have to be a triangle.

I can’t quite figure out how to get the math right in a Bounce so I just flip the direction of movement. The balls don’t have to collide with each other either. They are ethereal. Yes… ethereal. The walls, they are anti-ethereal… stuff. The balls bounce off them. That works, right?