Pun colon video game and news title

black

We’ve got the exclusive first look at a single pixel from a random frame of a probable release trailer premiering next Tuesday for the upcoming Video Game. It will be the latest from A Studio, famous for publishing That Other Video Game.

Since it’s being promoted as a “spiritual” ‘prequel’ to Game The First: The Beginning, we took a close look to see how it matched up to the fan expectations and rumors about its development. Will it feature everyone’s favorite love-to-hate Bad Guy? How about the ever-present Woman Object? No A Studio game would be complete without her. And don’t forget the ubiquitous White Savior too! He has to be in the game.

While this single pixel doesn’t give us much to work with, we can only guess this confirms one of four primary video game colors, black, will be featured in the game. We’ve yet to confirm brown, other shade of brown, and grey will be present, but the release trailer should clue us in to what will be in the final game.

As the writer of this post, I have an opinion. I played That Other Video Game for a few minutes, I think, and once had drinks with someone who was a roommate of a cousin of one of producers who once worked on the game for a few months. Just looking at this pixel fills me with feelings about the game.

While no official comment from A Studio has come out about this probable release trailer for Video Game, our sources tell us it is totes real and “110%” reliable.

From Web to Desktop with node-webkit

So you have a HTML5 app created. Maybe its something for adding filters to photos. Or something to edit text files. It could even be a game. However, you have a problem: you want to move from the open web to the desktop and not change your codebase.

There are several different approaches you could use. PhoneGap is one. Appcelerator Titanium is another. But neither are aimed at Desktops. For that, you need some type of browser to interpret your code and to display it.

One solution you could try is node-webkit. It’s a pairing of Node.js and Chromium. It acts as UI layer in JavaScript to the Blink rendering engine with Node.js as the bridge between the two. It’s a marriage of most of functionality from Node.js with nearly all of that found in Chromium.

However, it does have its problems. One, you will have to either compile your own version or otherwise ship a binary per platform your want to support — one for Windows and another for Mac OS X, for example. And two, the overall size of your project will grow up by at least 40 MB minimum. After all, it is both Node.js and a rendering engine you are shipping  with your project too.

All that written, to get started you will need a version of node-webkit and an application manifest file.

  1. Create a “package.json” file as the application manifest.

    {
    "main": "index.html",
    "name": "nw-demo",
    "description": "demo app of node-webkit",
    "version": "0.1.0",
    "keywords": [ "demo", "node-webkit" ],
    "window": {
    "title": "node-webkit demo",
    "toolbar": false,
    "frame": true,
    "width": 800,
    "height": 600,
    "position": "center"
    }
  2. Zip together “package.json” and all of your project files into a file called “app.nw”.

    zip app.nw index.html package.json

  3. Run it with node-webkit or combine the two.

    Run with node-webkit:

    nw C:\apps\myapp

    Combine “app.nw” with “nw.exe”

    copy /b nw.exe+app.nw app.exe

  4. Ship the files along with all necessary libraries.

    For Windows, “nw.pak” and “icudt.dll” are required files. So is either “nw.exe” or the combined file. “ffmpegsumo.dll” is needed for video and audio support. So are “libEGL.dll” and “libGLESv2.dll” for WebGL GPU acceleration.

The wiki has details. Like, using Menu or Window to redress the UI and using external Node.js modules.

Twine chain stories

I thought I was Twine’d out. After creating dozens of experiments and projects, writing some guides and even making some videos this year, I finally reached a point a few weeks ago when I got really tired of Twine. After spending several days trying to get some JavaScript to communicate between Twine’s wiki syntax and actual JS, I gave up with it. I’d had enough.

Today though, I ran across Let’s All Twine Together! It’ll Be Awesome! — twice! — and thought it was an interesting approach I hadn’t seen before using Twine. So, after contributing to Escape from Cthulhu and sending in my own rain rain crops, I thought I’d write up a quick blog post about it too.

That’s what this is: signal boosting for this chain story project thing. If you are interested, go read Jenni’s blog post and download the instructions. It’s a neat thing and I’m interested to see what happens when different writers work together on Twine stories.

The Lost Bits, a Kickstarter project

The Lost Bits logo

I’ve erased what was written here a few times now. I tried writing something more personal, laying out exactly why this Kickstarter project is important to me and why it’s terrifying at the same time. I thought about including some of the plot points of the (hopefully) upcoming game.

But really it all boils down to the same thing: money.

See, I’ve got some awesome friends. Ayla Elliott has agree to help me with the art. And Christer Kaitila has graciously agreed to create some original music for the game.

But I can’t pay them. Nothing more, that is, than smiles and a thank you. I don’t make money from the tutorials I do. In fact, one of the reasons I’ve slowed down in making them is because they consume several hours a week and they had become the sole game development I was doing.

That’s the other thing this project is: something long-term. I can do something in a few days. I can game jam quite well. But now I am going to pour all my time into ONE project. This will be what I will working on in July. Apart from some occasional writing, I won’t have a regular job or even classes to distract me.

Instead, I’ll be putting out development videos and showing how to make a point-and-click adventure game. Every experience is one to learn from and this will be doubly so for this project as I show writing and, yes, code too. This isn’t about me. It’s about art and music — and learning.

It’s The Lost Bits.