The Tequila Den

Combines the world of Tequila with Games.

Tag Archives: games

That was a late one…

The boys and I probably hung out a little bit too late last night and it was all thanks to Star Wars. Force and Destiny to be exact. Overall, after we concluded, it was fairly well received between all of us, but we hit some snags along the way.

The first few issues came from character creation. So right off the bat, we got confused and the books really don’t aid you too well in terms of how to actually set up a character properly. A lot of the steps are unclear and somethings are a bit convoluted. We had a hell of a time figuring out what skills the players got for free and the cost of said skill in experience. Nothing was really clear in that regard. We also didn’t fully realize the potential of characteristics either, which set off a mis-match disaster in terms of playing, when we finally got there.

Now, what I thought was going to be the biggest disaster of everything, actually turned out not too bad…. the dice.

After educating the players in what means what, what cancels what, and what each die represents, after a few instances it was actually pretty easy. Although we fucked up bad at the beginning, we mis-read a bunch of rules involving checks/initiatives so the players were actually quite under-powered so they ended up failing a lot of simple checks, always putting them behind the 8-ball in most situations.

Then I forgot all about destiny points.

Then I forgot about the force/conflict/morality.

It was a shit-show.

The next real pain in the ass, although still very much clouded in terms of clarification, are the range bands. I understand the idea, but it some regards its a bit confusing and most of the time, we didn’t feel the need to really move back and forth as for the most part it was a bit of shoot-out. I do, however, believe a lot of this issue was my own, I should of tried to flee a bit more.

After getting proper initiative checks down, we finally had the right order but combat felt a bit… clunky. Weapon use didn’t make a whole bunch of sense in some regards. The players didn’t have any skills in the particular weapons they had purchased and in the books its quite unclear what stats you’re supposed to be using when firing the weapon, then there’s the issue of critical hits, enemies having too high of a soak value for the party, alas… again, this being my issue as I didn’t read a bunch of information as to how it all goes down.

*sigh*

More reading I’ll have to do…

The biggest thing that bites my balls is the lack of information/direction in the supplied adventure. I’m glad it gave me some checks to do for certain things but there wasn’t much in terms of resolution, success/fail. I think I would have been easier off wing-ing it.

I thought about getting more campaigns/adventures, but I think I’d be better off doing it through my own ideas/eyes.

As a group we’ve decided that I would be better off just doing something I’ve prepared as opposed to a dedicated resource.

But, first and fore-most, I need to get a lot of things clearer, easier to understand for a much, much better experience.

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Learning to read…

The last couple of weeks I’ve been spending a lot of my time reading. I don’t normally read a lot of books so this should come as a big surprise to a lot of people. The reason I’ve started doing this reading fiasco is because of this…

I’ve recently purchased a few items to get a group together to get this game going. I’m not going to lie though, its been a huge pain in the ass sourcing a lot of it. I ordered the Core rulebook as well as the Force and Destiny core through amazon.ca to good success. I later got the GM screen from there as well. The biggest issue is trying to get the dice. I ordered one set off of miniature market (which has yet to arrive) and after doing a bunch of reading I’ve heard its much more convenient to use three full sets, so I decided to find some more with the only place to find them is by going to Barnes & Noble. Unfortunately in my town there isn’t a game shop I can just swing by and snatch up a set or two. So now we’ve been delaying our group waiting for these dice to pop up. I’m debating to just use the iPhone app, but it’s just not as much fun than rolling dice. I really disappointed that this isn’t a d20 system. I’m debating on making it one just because that’s what we like.

Frustrating.

…..

I’m still in the process of ¬†planning the new game, but honestly haven’t done a whole lot in those regards. Just haven’t found my drive for it just yet. It doesn’t help I’ve been spending a bit of time outside in the sunshine either cleaning up the yard or improving my golf game. Summer can be a busy month for myself so I tend to limit a bit of screen time. It’s coming, one day it is.

Making up for shortcomings…

I’ve spent the better part of the last couple of weeks going crazy over Canasta. It seems today it has finally paid off. I’m glad to announce that it right near reaching that elusive 1.0. It was a mighty struggle over the last few days in getting the AI to act properly under certain conditions, but after some constructive bug hunting, many of those have subsided. It was surprising to have the AI beat me, even when I could see their hands. I’ll have to dust off some strategies so that doesn’t happen again.

So, what’s missing before the 1.0 release? Well, there’s still a few things I’d like to clean up before I release it to the world (all… 3 of you that might see this,) I want to polish some of the animations I’m currently doing and adding a few tool tips in regards to game-play. It’s bad when you, as the script-er, forget some of the controls and necessary keys to actually play the game. I will also have to write some sort of ‘rules’ document to accompany the game as its not a completely common game to most. I was toying with the idea to have a bit of a sample hand, but I think that’ll be a 2.0 experience.

After the release of Canasta coming soon I can focus my energy on a game that’s been cooking up in my head this past while that just recently started hitting paper. I began thinking that one of my major pitfalls of getting ‘mouse’ or what should starting calling ‘rat’, is the lack of planning. It terms of canasta & traders I’ve actually planned a lot of the games’ GUI, functions and features on paper/word doc. I need to start doing this for ‘rat’ more extensively.

At roughly three o’clock this morning, when I had a bit of trouble sleeping, I opened up notes on my iPhone and started jotting down the ideas and story that I’ve concocted in my brain. Currently I was struggling with how to tie certain ideas together to make it all work. The biggest struggle for sure has been debating between sand-boxing and a more linear story line. As of now, it’ll be a mix of both, with more of a loose story and more of a sandbox given the universe it is loosely (or tightly [undecided]) based in.

But for now, Canasta is going to make the jump to 1.0. Stay tuned.

Dug out the ole tablet…

I found my old drawing tablet whilst I was cleaning up some messes the other day, it was nice to see that now a days, it’s a quick simple plug & play. That was hopeful because I remember seeing the disc that came with it, but I no longer remember that location to date, I’m sure that’ll pop up eventually. Any who, I’ve hit a desire snag working on Canasta, I just can’t get into it. The biggest problem is that it’s a string of code I remember doing multiple times, and it’s tedious as fuck. I’m currently developing a much simpler, cleaner & clearer way of doing the AI card selections, but I’ve slapped that to the back burner for now.

You may (or not) have noticed a new tab presented on the site, ‘articles’. I tend to, in the future (ha… isn’t that a theme in itself), place random, interesting, and mainly my gear grinding thoughts/topics into. I’ve wanted a space in which I can write articles that not necessarily have anything to do with the topics of this blog (could very well be in left field), and instead of creating a new site, I figure I would just tab them off in a ‘separate’ folder per say.

So, no news on Canasta and I haven’t written an article yet, traders didn’t get an update, and CCG page is… dusty. So what have I been doing?

Mouse, actually. I’ve laid a lot of bare bones in the framework of the game, unfortunately, not a lot graphically has been accomplished which makes it nearly impossible to show anything at all. Although I’ve re-created nearly everything in the screenshots that are already provided in that tab. Right now though I’m at a crossroads of sorts. I’m trying to nail down a definitive graphics style. I want to try and be as consistent as possible. My first iteration was to basically make a mere zelda clone, graphics and play style. I’ve been following Elias Daler¬†(blog) on twitter and through a SMFL forum post. He made a excellent post a while back about how unrealistic zelda’s view point really is, it simply doesn’t make any sense, the walls (and most terrain) represent a bird’s eye view and the rest is 3/4 perspective. I understand why they did it that way, but trying it for yourself doesn’t yield favorable results. So I’m going to a more true 3/4 view. I’m just fiddling with ways to show doors in a hallway north & south. Interesting.

Hopefully some screens to follow.

I’m really trying to make this a habit to post. It’s hard to lie about progress!

Familiarization….

Its been just about a day and I’ve been going through the code in canasta, trying to determine what I was I thinking in terms of some code changing. I almost abandoned the new additions I’ve made to the code because I think it was going to be a revert of sorts, but instead, it dawned on me, I’m re doing all of this to ensure the AI doesn’t get stuck in a position it can’t do anything, or the wrong/illegal move for that matter, I’m only partially through fixing and cleaning up, haven’t even got to the testing phase of it. In due time.

I know I should of just released it as 1.0A, then went back and fixed it properly for a 1.0B, or 1.1.

Every time I’ve been opening the editor up I’ve been thinking more and more about Mouse and what I want to do, plans for it, and such, then, after I’m doing with a tidbit I’ve been working on, I shut off my computer and start power up the XBOX, or my phone.

Big mistake.

I started playing GTA again since a bunch of friends also have the game and we’ve delved into the world of GTA online, oh my, now that’s a hoot. I absolutely love the idea of open worlds, do what you want kind of game-play. Then you have heists, robberies, businesses, and a bunch of mini games that can be played and land to explore. It’s my idea of a great game.

I also have a great idea of a game in my head, but unfortunately, that’s where it stands. Well, technically I have two, and the other problem with them is that they are not separate entities. They cross paths with each other so much that it’s nearly one giant game, but it can’t be. It wouldn’t make any sense.

The first, the one I mention most often, Mouse, was originally a two person party turn based combat game with close ties to Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy. I had a large storyboard made out with characters, backgrounds, maps, ideas, places and most importantly, story.

Cue: computer crash.

Roughly 6-7 years ago my computer failed and couldn’t recover my hard drive. I had an older back-up disc I made that had personal stuff on it, some gaming stuff and some applications that were handy at the time. It also included a rough, old copy of my dream in the making. It was demoralizing, it was really hard trying to motivate myself to continue and try and get back to where I was, which was a solid 4-6 months of good progress. So I stopped.

Anyways, idea number two. A lot of mobile games hinge around a couple of common themes now a days, building an empire of some sort, and PVP (player verses player). My initial thought was you logged into a server (which in a sense be a city), and you’d be at home. Generic place in the city, could of been an apartment, nothing really concrete at this point. But the idea was, you’re unemployed, and you’re broke, and you need to get rent money. So each day a paper shows up with a job opportunities and you get to explore the world to try and get a job and make some money. Then your, ‘life’, or such begins.

Unfortunately, the aforementioned is a huge undertaking, not likely something I’d conquer myself, but I had ideas for a smaller, localized scope, which also tragically gets ties with Mouse, and then shit just spit balls down a large hill full of crazy brainstorming.

So, as I squeamishly work through fixing Canasta, I dream, and think about working on Mouse. Soon.

 

Is winter actually over?

Scary to think that winter might actually be over here in Saskatchewan, at least in my neck of the woods. I really hope we’re done with the frosty snow because that means golf season ramps up and camping season is just around the corner. I’m excited to sit on the deck and have a few drinks with friends. I’m also excited to get some summer projects done as well. Crossing my fingers.

In other news, mainly Canasta news, I was planning on releasing the game sometime this week, but in terms of testing and how I want to present the game, it just simply isn’t ready yet. I’m very happy with the direction I’m going, I’m just not overly satisfied with the AI at the moment. I enjoy it, it is a challenge but I think they can be better and there is some behaviours I’d like corrected to make them a bit smarter with their game play. I’ve also managed to weed out a few bugs with my testing, so far (fingers crossed) I haven’t had any debilitating crashes, just some odd occurrences that I do believe I’ve conquered.

As of now, the plan is to release it the end of the month, so stay tuned card fans.

Coding frenzy… well, my type anyway.

I’ve been very vigilant with Canasta the last few days/weeks with a lot of bug testing. Unfortunately, but fortunately, I caught quite a few logic issues in the process. Then, like all good things do, something bad has to happen. Sphere decided to go in the “miniSphere” direction, which is basically a new and improved version of the original. With that it comes with an annoying editor that in my opinion isn’t the nicest to use. Since they’ve both come out I’ve avoided them like the plague. About two months ago I decided to give it a shot on my older laptop running Windows XP, turns out, they’ve dropped XP support, so I said fuck it. I picked up a cheap, run of the mill laptop, new to me, second hand Windows 10 laptop. I figured, might as well check it out, give a chance. It doesn’t run on Windows 10. Somewhere, they changed the minimum graphic requirements for (basically a SNES/NES) game. Pathetic. So I shut that idea down. But I gave the editor a chance after browsing through it, trying to get updated. Well, I can’t even change the resolution, then error after error, I said fuck that. Then I went back to old editor, and I started going away, finishing what I was working on, then I tried to search & replace. Fuck. The vanilla editor crashes, I’m guessing this is more of a compatibility problem. So I decided, back to the new editor.

So that search works, therefore I’ve been using that for a bit. Then I fucked up. I tried to test the game through the new editor with the new engine. It crashed, I got mad. I deleted the new shit. I opened up the separate script that I was focusing on and it was blank. It was inflated, but blank. I got mad. I spent a couple days trying to recover the file with no results. The new shit didn’t save the file properly and now the week’s worth was gone, 600+ lines of fresh, bug-free (hopefully) code. Gone. Gone. Gone (girl).

I made sure all that new crap, garbage really, was gone. I backup’d my other stuff and started, again.

My thoughts on this is that if you’re making a replacement of something that was made about a decade ago, make sure it runs what it used to, it makes SNES games, not XBOX One games or PS4 games, like fuck. There should very little graphical power to run this kind of engine. GRR.

/RantOver //I don’t even like mentioning it.

Back to grind.

Another one of those…. ‘oops’… type of posts.

Let’s just cut to the chase, I haven’t been working on anything really, well with one exception, and I’ll get to that a bit later. I’ve hit a snag with game development. There’s a few issues I’ve encountered in the last couple of weeks that I need to iron out. At this time, I can’t really find a happy medium with what I want to do.

Here’s some enlightenment. I want to make a turn based RPG that features an in & out type of party of two characters. That story is what I’ve been using for most of my main game design. Now, what I’m trying to do is morph the premise and environment to more of a open-world/exploration type of game. I hit roadblocks because I’m not sure where to go now and I don’t know how combine the two. I’m thinking they need to be torn apart again. They are too different to be the same game. So this is my plan as of now, start both projects roughly anew (but not overly), and hopefully creativity will spark up with both of them – like I did with Traders and Canasta when Traders was just a baby. I’m pretty sure I’ll be using assets from both games together as one, until they morph to what I want them to be. Stay tuned!

Other news, I kicked a lot of ass at Chrono Trigger while I was camping a couple of weeks ago.

Chrono-TriggerI’m basically just floating around doing the last few side quests before the big battle. I’ve honestly never got this far before. I was just never that good at it. The best part is that I haven’t really touched any type of guide for it so that’s a bonus. I’m just that gooooooood… Ha. We’ll see how shit goes.

I might have a little A.D.D. just a tad…

Expect some form of information on Mouse in the coming days and hopefully a proper return to 30 day challenge and such.