Moving backgrounds and the Software Saga continues

I’m finally proud to say… that Sullivan, our unfortunate prison in-mate main character of the Lua game Alterna Comics’ “The Chair: Prison Break”… is no longer walking in place.

 

He ironically matches very well with my neo disco Spotify station as I'm typing this...

He ironically matches very well with my neo disco Spotify station as I’m typing this…

 

(ugh looks like WordPress’ larger editor doesn’t like custom image resizing; I recommend clicking on the gif above to launch it in a larger size in a new tab.) Sullivan is finally moving places, albeit at a snail’s pace in comparison to how fast the game will be going later on. I’m also working on making the background transition more seamless, but any progress is better than none!

I would have also liked to show my hitbox collisions I started on, but Marmalade released 7.3 yesterday so I wanted to keep up-to-date as well. Unfortunately support has to manually release my license in order for me to transfer it to the 7.3 build though, so I await their response. Hopefully that gets finished up soon so I can continue programming!

 

In the mean time, I’m working on spritesheets for another game for a different colleague of mine, though they won’t contain as fluid of an animation as my game here. It’s more of a retro game so the framerates would be smaller to compensate for lesser frames. Not sure on how much I can show of it because I would really like to showcase some of it for my next blog update, so I will ask my colleague beforehand. If anything I can always do something more of promotional purposes (non-gaming assets). All I can say so far is that it’s really cute and a lot of fun to work on!

 

 

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Otherwise, I will be at Eternalcon‘s artist alley next weekend selling my artworks (and any commissioned pieces upon request at my table). So if you’re in the Long Island, NY area, please feel free to stop by! Aside from my prints I also will be having freebies to give out, mainly bookmarks. Reading is good for you!

If you’re not local to the area but still wanna purchase or keep an eye on my work anyway, I am now open on Storenvy and running a coupon promotion for the month of June. Use coupon code “GRANDOPENING” for 40%off!

Smells like progress

Hello all! I mean to update the other day but then it escaped my mind, so for this update I decided to just post early rather than wait midweek again.

I have a progress gif of the finished sprite for Sullivan; he since is bigger now but here’s his animation regardless.

 

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Now walk it off! 1, 2, 3, 4…

 

Next update I’ll have other elements added, most likely not sprite related but some more things regarding game mechanics.

I also finished cleaning up my new portfolio site, though I still need to add other examples of my more recent work. I wanted to add collapsible divs but the code I was using wasn’t cooperating with it, so I went for anchor jumps instead and so far it’s worked well. It’s also much more mobile friendly than my previous layout.

 

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How come my color schemes always remind me of ice cream flavors…

Adventures in Lua and Pixel Art

So after my dilemma regarding CoronaSDK  and iOS development using Windows, I had since moved on to Marmalade and I love it! I still like Corona but I will use it for Android builds only, though since I took advantage of a free yearly license kudos to the GDC, why the heck would I switch? Both cost the same and Marmalade does way way more. Very powerful stuff. Remind me to kill my Corona subscription later next year.

(Though a colleague of mine reminded me Unity has a 2D engine now, and I could have used it in the first place. We won’t talk about that however, since it just reminds me that I’m a dingus of a developer sometimes. Or I just wanted to do some Lua bonding that bad. Oh my.)

 

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Some basic elements for the game so far. Background was made by me; the sprites are from tutorials as placeholders.

 

Nothing super fancy so far going on for my brother’s game (see above), but I did get a timer and score going, as well as other basics like laying out animated sprites and touch events. Though I made the background to be more finalized art, there’s a chance it won’t be the final version used for the game. Still playing around with how pixelated I want the style to be. For my next update I plan to have a jumping animation and even a hit box test, so that you can collect the coins and improve your score that way. The hit boxes will also be useful for obstacles and collecting other things like power-ups.

Somewhat game dev related, I also am remaking my current portfolio site. For some reason the JQuery on my 2nd page died, and won’t load the new beautiful version I set up on my FTP, despite the preview working well beforehand. At least it shows part of my script for Compendium, but still. Since my portfolio needed some organization anyway, I figure it was a good opportunity to jazz it up.

 

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Mmm, smells like HTML5 and CSS3!

 

I’m using a responsive grid gallery kudos to codrops, since I generally like their tutorials and their HTML5 galleries, in particular. I’m a sucker for good web design though, and the marvels we can do with it. I still get really excited when I discover new things about it, such as that CSS3 allows embedded fonts! No more same old Arial or Helvetica here! What you see in the screencap is a working page, not a Photoshop mockup! Beautiful stuff.

I also made the resume icon you see at the top right corner there, and am considering making a high-res vector of it that others can use as well. (I may reverse the colors so that it matches better with the other ones though.) I miss making icons and vectors. Even though I just made a handful last week for another game project.

VN screencaps and another project

For those anxiously waiting to see what my game actually looks like so far, here it is! For promo purposes I blurred out names and faces from the stock photos in the screencaps here (despite them being free but they’re placeholder images either way, they will not be in the final version).

In classic visual novel fashion, inner dialogue with the main character is in italics.

Character names will be in different colors, and for the most part, will appear as their last names (except for an unknown person talking, which will be “Voice” in grey).

I’m still playing around with the text size, since this will also be going on mobile. On PC the size is perfect, but one of the characters, Isis, has a very sheepish voice so her dialogue will always be in a smaller font than the others. Obviously since this will also be a mobile release, that would be an issue and would have to be tested. If you’re curious though, the typeface I used is Euphorigenic by Ray Larabie, a free-to-use font (even for commercial releases; just don’t sell the font or any alterations of it). It’s very lovely and polished! I’m a big fan of it and it helps me not get sick of seeing my work for this game.

Aside from that, while I did promise new colorings and lineart of avatar art, I was given a proposal for a game idea by my brother Peter. As the founder and head of Alterna Comics, he was looking to have a small spin-off game made to help promote his graphic novel, The Chair, since it has been picked up by director Chad Ferrin (The Ghouls (2003), Someone’s Knocking at the Door (2009) to be slated for an independent movie production. As seen from last week’s post, that was the endless runner project I briefly mentioned (and why I also decided to resurrect my little tomato guy, since he’ll be testing out the game mechanics and so far it looks good).

So instead I have been busy starting up on that project, and once I’m given the go-ahead, I hope to show some UI and item designs I did so far. Depending on how my pixel art skills are, maybe even graphics of that, but I admit I do more vector and tablet art work than pixels. But I do look forward to actually doing more of that though. The extent of my pixel art is basically my Animal Crossing QR codes for outfits and decorum, so I guess that’s a good start.

Do the Lua

Hello everyone! Figured I would drop in an update of what I’ve been up to. Aside from my ongoing visual novel project, and the other Unity one I’m working on with another team, I decided to check out other game tutorials out there for simpler games to make that would still be fun, as well as showcase my design work.

I plucked out this gem from my first semester of grad classes, since it was riddled with bugs but still held some charm according to the feedback I got from playtesters. (Btw “gem” is not an endearing term at all in this case; I was very close to pulling all of my hair out over AS2 code that would not cooperate.)

“Tomato’s Perilious Adventure”, a Flash game I coded in AS2 back in 2011.

But of course there were plenty of solutions out there to fix up this game, even though I’m primarly doing this to strengthen my skills in Lua (and also the occasional HTML5) and to actually make more games people can play rather than being muddled with non-disclosures all over the place. I found a great tutorial on making an endless runner game (like Temple Run) that even I could play without burning my eyeballs and getting dizzy (not like Temple Run). So I plan to fashion up my own with my poor tomato pal here, and give him a second life.

If the final product is deemed fit to actually publish and have others to play, I will release it for free on Google Play (App Store fee isn’t practical for my budget right now). Aside from this one, I plan to make other little games, although some of my ideas are a tiny bit more complicated but they’ve always been on my wishlist (a good word game, and a time management one. I’m a sucker for both genres). My goal is to get very good with Lua and HTML5 by the end of the year though, and of course complete my visual novel.

As of the status of that though, I will be changing up the look of the avatars that I was going to use. The lineart felt too harsh and I wasn’t as happy with my coloring job, so next week’s update I’ll go back in and adjust it. I also will assemble some screenshots as well so far, now that I renamed some things and feels a little more finalized (still using stock photos so bear with me).