May was more about real life than gaming and June, have to say, is shaping up the same way. I did very much enjoy the opening of the Celebration server on Wurm Online though. And treated our household to the Legend of Grimrock instead of a fish and chip supper. It was really nice to see younger players trying it out, finding it strange and constricted …and then getting hooked. So the house resounds to the sounds of arg, as people fall into traps, miss getting through gates and are defeated by giant snails – oh wait that last was me. I started it off for the rest, got killed by a snail and had to go and do something else. Somehow everyone is fed, warm, clothed and in reasonably hygaenic surroundings as I sit here on a Sunday evening thinking – phew! What a month.
Just about everyone passing through here gets suborned into trying a game if they don’t escape fast enough. Research! I like watching their reactions to ones I already know, and frankly I don’t have time to try half the things on my hard drive, so settling a guest in with an unknown title is pretty helpful. Nothing that doesn’t run stays on the drive. I download, install, check it works and leave it until I have time or a guinea pig… err guest, to check it out. The comments are fascinating – I have to tell you, whatever is pushed at us, nobody has ever once said “oh goodie we have to join a guild to get x, I can’t wait!”. Or “I like not being able to personalise my avatar.” Just watching people’s reactions to some of the current staples makes me wonder what planet devs live on. Perhaps they just never watch and listen to real players starting out in their games?
Actually tonight I feel pretty brain dead and will have to revive myself with a wonderful hot cup of tea, a hot water bottle, a fluffy blanket, anything warm !! – yep I have just been seeing someone off on a bus, standing out in the cold for near an hour. For some reason summer hasn’t made an appearance here this year and yeah wait I’ll get that cup of tea and try to remember what I played in spare moments during the blur that was last month.
Not much. Botanicula, but I barely played. Everquest in a mad moment – never played it before. Main memory of this attempt is enjoying moving the windows about – don’t think I even started the tutorial. I think I was pretty tired.
I did manage to spend quite a lot of time here and there going through Blender tutorials on Youtube while doing other things. There is a terrific amount to learn and small doses of learning here and there provide a great deal of food for thought and inspiration. Our ideas file is bulging nicely. It’s a nice phase this, experimenting, trying things, learning. I think we’ll not hurry Blender really is perfect for prototyping and for figuring out how things might work. Expanding the prototype, well, I’m not sure. We’ll take it as far as it goes, feel the edges so to speak, and keep our options open. For example when I googled “create an ingame mouse pointer” (and variations on that query) I was presented with a lot of frustrated users, some dead ends, the usual pratts talking down to people who dared to ask – a general mishmash. One or two possible solutions requiring python were there. I shall explore those eventually. And of course I’m not running the very latest version right now, so this very basic functionality might actually have been included in the game engine by now. Maybe it’s there but not documented. As far as I can tell though, player interaction is very limited. Keypresses or mouseclick equivalent.
However things certainly move fast in the Blender world and I remain deeply impressed.
And that’s about it for May. Yay bedtime!