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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone completed anything and How to keep going?
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2010 12:48 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 3:21 pm
Posts: 12388
Location: Portland, OR USA
Quite coincidentally, I started a game just after this thread was posted. My teenage son was complaining about the poor gameplay of a recent flash-based guitar hero type game on newgrounds, and asked me how you'd approach doing something like that. I threw a canvas and a timer on a window and demonstrated how to animate a colored circle falling down the screen. That lit him up, and over the course of a few evenings, we developed a graphically simple, but very playable game. He worked out the timing of the notes, in terms of quarter notes from the beginning of the song (he's a musician so it had to be accurately sync'ed with the music) and I provided the programming.

It's been a lot of fun, and a diverting challenge. It took me in some directions I don't usually go, and there were some interesting problems to solve to make it work. It was great working with my son and proving that Dad is still "cool".

The thing that kept me going, though, was having a partner who was very into the project. I would have lost interest and never got it as far as we did.

2 interesting problems I had to solve were coming up with a simple mechansim for timing the "notes" on screen with songs at various tempos, and dealing with the annoying pause when you first start a sound, it really messes up the timing. I'll make a separate thread on those later, and maybe put up a screenshot.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone completed anything and How to keep going?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:59 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 1:56 pm
Posts: 113
timhare wrote:
I'll make a separate thread on those later, and maybe put up a screenshot.


That would be great to see!


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone completed anything and How to keep going?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 11:37 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 11, 2006 2:43 pm
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I finished just one game back in the 80's for the Atari ST. I released it to the ST Format magazine (a UK publication) and moved on to other projects.
Every other hobbyist venture has been applications, rather than games. Commercially I wrote a couple of internet config apps for the Mac when we still used MacTCP, a rather dull printer driver for a rather dull laser company, and some projects I'll not share.

I enjoyed writing games, but they are very time consuming. In my early days a friend and I would set up our Atari computers on my dining room table (much to the disgust of my new wife) and spent all weekend coding. We had a truly awesome game we spent almost a year writing. The gameplay was really cutting edge for the hardware. We never got as far as giving it a title, or finishing the graphics. We had a crudely animated crudely drawn orange sphere as the character and planned to eventually animate it with something in fitting with the game. The game was jokingly referred to as the "see that orange blob, thats you that is" game for all of its development cycle. In developing the game we relied heavily on machine language to squeeze every last processor cycle out, and the discovery of assembly language and raw machine code meant our game was dropped and the murky world of TSRs came knocking. Those years are best forgotten.

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