Friday, September 05, 2008

Games and games

While the project I'm working on at Firaxis hasn't been announced (I cannot talk about it), I can blab about the game a group of us are working on for the Independent Games Festival (IGF) deadline in November.

Right now 2 artists, and 2 other programmers (besides me) are working on an action / arcade, casual, game in Actionscript 3. This is being done under Geek House Games in our nights and weekends. Currently we're porting over some previous work in Actionscript 2 and have found the transition to be highly beneficial. There are many great libraries and code snippest in AS3 out there.

It looks like we'll be using APE for physics, and are evaluating FLiNT for particles. While I already had written a simple collide system for sprites and an allocator for particles; leveraging existing systems should provide us with more robust, mature, and feature rich code. That leaves more time to work on the game itself.

Now all we need is to find a Flash sound system, with a good license, and we'll be 75% of the way there.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Quick video game life updates

As of May 1st, I am now working at Firaxis Games; leaving Breakaway Games. I was sad to be leaving such an awesome team of people, but the transition has been smooth... and I'm now meeting many new people who are also of the awesome caliber.

We have a Baltimore IGDA meeting coming up in 2 weeks, and as the newly elected chair, I'm doing my best to grow the chapter in terms of membership and activities. I have an awesome team on the local board, with many great ideas, and time to follow through with them. While only regular meetings are in place, we are looking at what it would take to throw a "Childsplay"-like benefit this year, as well as a Game Jam next year. And finally there is the goal of building the network between local studios and schools.

Speaking of local studios, I still am running Geek House Games. We're a lean team of industry vets, working on a Flash-based game for this years IGF competition. Once we take time away from working on the game, to update the web-site, I hope to be blogging more about this endeavor.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Music music music

It's been awhile since I've had a chance to compose some techno. I realize that a few of my current pieces aren't indexed on the web; perhaps because I link to the through a Flash page. To fix all that, I make some direct links to the MP3s available here. Enjoy:

Ashes Remain Remixed

O Brother Remix

31st Birthday Mashup (C1 mix)

Between making video games, I hope I get a chance to do some more in the future... I miss the dance-outlet!

Monday, March 03, 2008

GDC'08 Was fantastic

Two weeks ago I was at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco. This was the 4th year I both attended and worked as a Conference Associate (CA). My goal this year was to do more networking than the previous years. I succeeded, but only after learning that pre-scheduled meetings rarely work out. My advice, to myself, for future GDCs: exchange cell numbers and play phone tag. It works out just as well, if not better.

Biggest surprised going away from GDC'08 was my confidence shift in Adobe. As a part of Geek House Games, I've been spending a good deal of time working on our Flash Game Engine. As such, I was on fire to talk to an Adobe representative about the future of Flash. The only (semi-)technical representative on hand was from the "Adobe Director" division, showing off a 3d engine that had quality on par with the Sony PlayStation of the late 90s. All questions I asked received, "I'm sorry I don't know," or "I am not authorized to give an answer to that'd need to talk to someone on the Flash team".

Interestingly enough, Microsoft was very open on all of my questions about XNA and Silverlight. I've had a theory of the potential of Silverlight running in XNA (as tons of AAA titles run Flash in C++ now via Gfx or home grown tools) so I had to ask the rep about the possibility. He told me nothing has been announced, but said so in such a way that leads me to believe "nothing has been announced" does not equate to "no".

Writing this up, seems I learned the same from both venders, but for some reason I enjoyed chatting it up with the Microsoft guy than the Adobe guy. What's that mean? While I still plan to work on GHG's Flash Game engine, I'm also looking more seriously at what XNA and Silverlight can offer.