Thursday, September 15, 2011

Of Apps and Browsers. . .

This isn't a rant, and I'm going to surprise a few Flash dudes by not bashing on Flash for once (yes, I've been pretty hard on my roots lately).

Today Microsoft announced that there will be a plugin-less experience in their IE10 Metro browser.  And yes, the Flash hate squad instantly jumped on the "Flash is Dead" train and drove it to Link bait land.  Whatever, it's a typical response.

Here's what I see the news as:  a Paradigm Shift.  We have to look at the browser in a different light, and maybe look at it in the same light as it's hated Plugin children.  The browser is being limited, and it's role is changing in the age of Mobile domination.  And guess what?  That doesn't mean the death of Flash, they have just turned the browser holy land into yet another "App".

So what am I getting at?  Move on Flash dudes, move onto AIR.  Don't hinder your awesome experiences by encasing them in a box.  A box that doesn't even want them in the first place at this point.  Am I the only one that has noticed a correlation to how bad Flash runs and the Iteration of Browser?  Maybe I'm a conspiracy dork (and I'm running a MacBook Pro as well, lol), but a lot of people have been noticing.

But I've also been noticing how much every single browser has sucked terribly when trying to view something that would've made the FWA's any other year.  Hell, even HTML5 sucks balls on the browsers.

I moved into Native Mobile Application development for a reason.  I believe that browsers have their place as a renderer.  But for a real experience I've been looking to Native Apps more and more lately.  And with new App Stores popping up on every OS everyday, I think your viewers/clients are being trained to do the same thing.

Maybe I'm wrong, and I'm sure I'll hear about it if you disagree with me.  That's cool.  Let's discuss.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Kickstarter Postmortem (a.k.a. FAIL)

First off, I would really like to thank all 9 guys that pitched in to my Kickstarter project.  + 5 Karma all around for you awesome people.

I set the Kickstarter goal at the crazy high amount of $5000.  I knew it wasn't going to make that, but I was curious to see if the Unity3d community would get behind me at all.  And they really didn't.  But I can't blame this on anyone other than myself really.  I didn't push it at all, probably because I don't like asking/begging for help, and on top of that, the money wasn't really able to be spent the way I wanted to.

Kickstarter is very very strict on what you spend the earned money on.  I was actually needing the money most to fund a game competition I wanted to run to get Games onto We Are Battle.  That killed my project I believe, because why does a successful Developer need 5000 dollars to start a website?  And what would 5000 dollars really go towards?  Exactly.

Also, to be successful on Kickstarter you have to have great rewards.  Yeah, my rewards were totally lacking.  But unfortunately I've seen that most Digital Projects on Kickstarter die a sad death.  Especially video games.  The only games that are really funded I've noticed are board games,  because then you typically receive a thing in the mail.  

Thanks again to the awesome guys that ponied up,  and showed that they believed in the project.

Good night, and good luck.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Action as opposed to complaining

Recently, I launched a beta of my first real Unity game:  Twitter Of The Dead.  What surprised me the most about the experience was the lack of real support for Unity games.  But then just as I was about to give up, I was sent this shining ray of light on Twitter:  Unity Blog link.

Long story short,  I didn't read the comments on that Unity blog link and received this from Kongregate:

At this point we do not support Unity3D games on our site, so I'm afraid we can't approve it. 
Yeah, that was a bummer.  Especially since I had been playing the game on Kongregate's site for the previous 2 days, and had optimized my game to fit in their iFrame system (I'm not bitter really).  This left me with very few options.  Yes, there are a couple of Unity portals online, but the bigger ones (which are still tiny in comparison to their Flash-centric siblings) tend to be backed by a game studio.  I'm talking about and,  I didn't really apply to either, just due to my game not really fitting their format.  Which brings me to my new Kickstarter project.

Introducing WeAreBattle.

Instead of being a defeatist, I'm going to make the game Portal that I would like to post games to.  Also I've wanted to setup an XBox Live Audio Chat system for Unity for a while now, and this will help me allow to do that.  I'm tired of game portals being more about the website, and not really focusing on the quality of games, and their game developers needs.

Check out my kickstarter project here, and maybe if you feel the same way I do, we can make a freakin' cool place for games,  and help get you game devs more in touch with the people playing your games.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Welcome to Multiplayer Game Development, also known as Hell.

If you have tried to look up First Person Shooter "AAA" Multiplayer Programming you've probably found very little on the subject.  While I understand why the big game development houses keep that information under wraps. . . it still sucks none the less.  So, I've decided to help out a little bit.

Here are the few resources that I have found on the web, and please feel free to add any blogs/articles/books that you know of in the comments.  We're all in this together.

Good night, and good luck.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Flash updating Twitter Status the easy way, right?

Twitter has a super easy way of updating twitter statuses via URL, but the awesome Wez Crozier and I came across some issues.  But first to how you do this:

var url:String = "";

First note:  do not try, because it will not work.  Your escaped items (mainly Hashtags # == %23) will not be unescaped for you.  Props to Wez for that one.

Here's some awesome RegEx code Wez figured out for me too (I suck at RegEx):

var textToPostToTwitter:String = postText.text;
var input:String = url+textToPostToTwitter;
var output:String = input.replace(new RegExp(/\s/g), "+");
output = output.replace(new RegExp(/\#/g), "%23");

Something that I figured out because I was trying to be lazy and sneaky was that you have to replace the whole String.  I mean you can't just replace the String you want as the status and do a url + input.replace(new RegExp(/\s/g), "+");.  

So, I hope that helps some of you guys not fall into the trap we did.  And thanks again Wez, you rock.

Follow Wez at:

And use Grant Skinner's awesome RegExr.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Ryndem Sound Engine

Wow, it's been a while now since I've updated my blog.  With so much going on, who has time to write?

With all the game stuff I've been doing lately in my free time, I've been finding an incredible lack of good Audio tools for Game Devs.  The only one I found that was worth a damn was  Fmod, which is amazingly powerful, but also very expensive to license for the Casual game peeps.

So, I decided to make my own Unity3d/Flash Sound Engine and it's called Ryndem.  I also took a little bit of a different approach.  While it's a sound mixing program like Fmod is, it also is a smart system that you can use to drive the gameplay itself.

It will also have a super simple Hierarchical State Machine incorporated into it, so you can map out the mix/gameplay elements.  This will be useful for Rhythm games, and just keeping everything in a beautiful sync.  I'm still working on the UI, but I have a few in game music mixes here:

And you can follow the project at:

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Game Developers are Developers too. . .

Being with Influxis for a while now, and speaking at various conferences I've noticed something kinda strange. There's an elephant in the room that the developers are talking about (and I'm not talking about how the hell a bum became a developer).

There's a weird lack of Game Development sessions at Flash/Flex conferences. Unless you are going to a "Gaming" Conference, mum's the word on Flash Game Development (i.e. the awesome Flash Gaming Summit I went to in San Fran). And I don't understand why this is.

Is it because the Flash Rockstars aren't making games? Well, I know Grden and Zupko are basically in the Unity3d camp. But Keith Peters has made some awesome flash and iPhone games.

I think there should be more talks about game development at the major conferences. It's a MAJOR part of the Flash Community. I think it would also help bring the level of development up across the board. Games are hard to make. They usually require lots of Maths, Physics, and Artificial Intelligence implementation. Not to mention a healthy helping of Design Pattern knowledge. I also think that if you put a lot of the harder programming/architecture concepts into game terminology, things become a little less scary, and easier to visualize.

Then maybe, just maybe. . . non-gamers will see the art behind game design. Also, maybe we could figure out a way to make some money off of Flash Game Development. That would be pretty cool I think.