Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Constellar: The Story

Games often have a story behind them. Here's the story of Constellar.

The "House" level (pictured left) was my first introduction to the kind of connect-the-dots brain teaser featured in Constellar and I discovered it in a Pizza Hut. Back when I was eight or nine we lived in Virginia. I always looked forward to going out for pizza not just for food, but also for the placemats which always had pictures to color, mazes, jokes and brain teasers on them. My brother and I would always ask our server to borrow a pen so we could finish the mazes or play the little games together.

 I remember seeing the five dots with the instructions to draw a house without picking up your pencil or retracing a line. It took a few tries, but finishing that little puzzle became one of the sparks that has fueled a life long fascination with math and brain teasers.

In college I took classes on graph theory, among other things. I learned about circuits and cycles and Eulerian graphs. Finding paths and circuits was a common homework assignment. I learned about the mathematical underpinnings of this kind of brain teaser and the fascinating set of rules that governed the strategies for solving them.

Thirty years later I'm now making games that matter to me. I'm so lucky that in this period of my life I have the opportunity to create things drawn from my life experiences. I get to make games that I want to play as an adult and that I would love to be able to introduce to my eight year old self.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Constellar! I made a video game!

There's an addition now to the sidebar on the right.  I've made and released a video game called Constellar!

Constellar is a fun (at least to me) connect the dots app reminiscent of the Astrarium puzzles in Dragon Age. You can help the stars align in this fun and challenging brain exerciser.

It's been about a year now since I left my office job to make my own way in the big, wide world of game development. In between contracting jobs and various other projects I finally have something I'm ready to show the world. I'm really proud of my work on Constellar and I hope that you'll enjoy playing it as much as I've enjoyed making it.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Progression of Rats

I've finished off the wererat assassin. I'm not super happy with the painting, but I'm not super happy with the model either. The reaper bones miniatures are made of a low quality pvc. If you do pickup any of these miniatures I'd recommend thinking about them like the prepainted miniatures you might get out of a blind box, except that you'll be painting them yourself. The cost of the models makes them ideal for bulking up your collection, especially for things like role-playing games.  But the quality of the cast means there's a very low level of detail and you probably won't want to put a huge amount of effort into their paintjobs.

Shhhh. He's being sneaksy.

He's up to something...
I'm closing in on the last of the rat figures for the pathfinder campaign. Here's the current state of the Skaven Grey Seer that I've been gradually covering with paint. The model is very detailed but actually pretty easy to paint, with all the details accessible even after assembled. I think Games Workshop did an awesome job with all their clamshell plastic character models. After their finecast debacle they just really knocked it out of the park with these miniatures.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Ratsassin Completed

I was able to get one miniature all the way finished for the Tuesday Pathfinder campaign.  Here's the model for my character, a ratman ninja/monk, or as it's known in the Warhammer universe, a Skaven Assassin. The Player Characters are level four, going on five. My three level dip into monk is at an end and I'm just a couple levels away from getting into shadow dancer. Pathfinder has so many variants and options in it for every aspect of the character that it's possible to spend entire evenings weighing options and plotting progressions.

Sneaksy and Stabbity
Since we had a chance to explore a bit more of the dungeon we are trapped in, I have also expanded the dungeon map to include the rooms we opened up during the last play session.

Next, you put a Duergar in the box.