Saturday, December 21, 2013

A Random Digression: Learning Japanese!

So, at some point yesterday evening, I decided to finally get over myself and start studying Japanese. I mean, how hard could it be, right? This isn't my first go at it, but it's certainly my fiercest go of it. It began when I found myself looking at and then spiralled out of control. I've long known the basics of pronunciation and, over my various short lived attempts, managed to pick up a few bits of the grammar and even a handful of words... but on this day, I decided that wasn't enough. Ignoring the site's advice to learn the syllabarys (syllabaries?) Hiragana and Katakana, I jumped right into the lessons available. After all, they do provide the terms in Romaji (Japanese words with English letters), so why not just jump right in?

I got through 12 lessons this way, stopping at prepositions (postpositions?) as it introduced a little too much at once but I felt like I was making real progress. At this point, I started looking around for more learning resources, and found a few useful thing, but all signs seemed to point in one, very scary, direction: Learn Hiragana. Truth told, this hurdle always seemed to be the bridge too far; "There's so many characters", "The symbols are so complicated", "It'll take too much time/effort" my most common excuses. But this time... this time, I was determined and I stumbled on this wonderful post:

Monday, October 28, 2013

And The Game Kept A Rollin' All Night Long

Just a quick update since it's been a little while. Progress continues, if a bit slowly over the last few weeks. Between Guild Wars 2, helping out in XNA Chat and general Laziness, not too much has been accomplished but there HAS been progress.

I've added in a few more monster types, cleaned up quite a bit more of the Vita code, added a splash screen and several other minor tweaks under the covers.

Hope to have more soon, maybe even an updated demo! For now, I'll leave you with a couple more screen shots off of the Vita build:

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Heroes of Eterna on Vita! This Could Work!

A few weeks back I made a post mentioning the potential for HoE to run on a Vita using MonoGame/PlayStation Mobile, and another outlining some of the issues. Today, I'd like to share that progress on that front has been staggering! After spending a couple of evenings running down some issues, I can proudly report that the game is running at almost full steam on a Vita!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

A Playstation Mobile/MonoGame Experience!

I said I'd post more details about the issues I'd had with the PSM/Monogame port and here they are!

In this post I'm going to try and outline some of the problems I faced when working with the PSM port of MonoGame.

First thing you'll want to do is read over barnard666's post in this thread. It was very helpful in getting set up, and this post assumes you've at least skimmed the numbered items :) 

Heroes of Eterna on Vita!?

So I spent a little bit of time this week working to try and get Heroes of Eterna running on a Vita using MonoGame's PSM port. I'd attempted this once before, but ran into trouble with the RakNet references. Since one of my recent changesets was fully removing all of that, I figured I'd have another go of it.

I started with a fun little prototype, TinyGame, and after resolving some content issues, it worked. And, freaking brilliantly:
Easily the definitive version of that little prototype.

So, next, it was on to the big fish. And what a fish it was. It took about an hour to get the menu screen up and working, which was pretty neat:

Next was where all the fun began, but I'll try to go over all the little issues I ran into in another post in case it helps someone down the line.

I did eventually get the project running, but it was... Not Ideal™.

The performance was pretty bad, Input has been handled in an interesting way, none of the sounds were loaded and getting hit by anything crashed the game, but hey, it worked!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Heroes of Eterna: Now on IndieDB!

This weekend marks a couple of neat milestones for Heroes of Eterna!
First, we have the creation of the IndieDB entry for it (found here). This is a pretty big step for me as it gets the project out into the real internet world, beyond the confines of this unviewed blog.

Next up we have the first official demo release! I spent the early part of the weekend polishing it up for the masses and have released it, with a fancy new installer! You can find the demo here.

For anyone interested in such details, I used InnoSetup, which is pretty great, to create the install package. For you other XNA devs out there looking for an installer system that lets you conditionally install the XNA runtimes, this couldn't have been easier to set up. I found an excellent InnoSetup script by one Daniel Truong that I only needed to fiddle with a tiny bit to get working. You can find the script here.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Heroes of Eterna: A Casual Quest

Well folks, we finally have ourselves a finalised title!

These last few weeks, while quiet here, have actually been pretty big weeks for updates with some significant changes having been made. Now then, lets get on to the good stuff!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Big Bugs And Small Fixes

So, I've had on my list a nasty little collision bug for quite a while now. I was sure I'd have to make significant changes to squash it. Well, I didn't! It's fixed, and with just a few lines! After putting it off and putting it off, the problem finally clicked and it was resolved in minutes WOO!

Not much in other news today. New art keeps rolling in at a steady clip, and progress continues to be made.

Updates since the last post

  • Fixed the pesky map collisions bug
  • Linked Item SFX
  • Added fancier Life/Aura bars.
  • Heavy foundation work for Summon skills (It almost looks like it works)
  • Fixed the Seeker skill type. (for real this time!)
  • Added a second Large Map
  • Seriously, fixed that collision bug... It was freaking gross.
  • Fixed monster spawning bug.
  • Several minor bug fixes.
  • Add a little speed to everything.
  • Add support for Boss spawn and boss treasure drops
  • Add Item Debug draw
  • fix Item bounding boxes
  • Fix Player bounding boxes
  • Fix Skill bounding boxes
  • Fix Tombstone (wasn't drawing)
  • Prevent the same map from being picked twice in a row when possible.
    • Prevents region change from blinking in
  • End Gameplay song on shutdown
  • Stop drawing black wave complete box
Stay tuned for more updates as their available.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Still Kickin!

Been a quiet couple of weeks around here (as usual -_- ...), but that doesn't mean things aren't still being done!

While a number of the changes made over the last few weeks have been completely under the hood as I work toward implementing Summons, there are a few things to talk about.

First off, if you look up at the top of the blog here you should see a link to Project Progress. It's a little check list I'm keeping of things to do and I'm lining things off as I complete them.
Next up: A bullet list of updates!

  • Seekers! The Mage's most powerful ability, the Seeking Blast has finally been properly implemented and now homes in on the nearest enemy.
  • Items can now be collected by touching them (rather than just by attacking them).
  • The Revive skill has been implemented
  • Several little bugs have been ruthlessly murdered.
  • The range on a handful of skills has been corrected.
  • Players now have shadows!
  • Several new player and weapon sprites
  • Two fully finished Tilesets!
  • New Fonts
  • More Help Text
See? Not too bad... The pesky map collisions issue is still out there, and I'm still pondering the best way to implement his demise.

Oh, and before I forget:

New Screenshot! We spent some time going over ideas for how best to fill the screen at a REAL resolution (1280x720) when we settled on this here. I think it looks kinda nice, and I'm sure it'll get better as we grow the ideas. The map has been blown up to 29x22 tiles and the ChatBox has been moved off to the left. The Wave display has been moved up to the top left there. All in all I think it's coming along pretty nicely.

That's all for now, till next time!

Thursday, July 18, 2013


I hadn't initially realized that linking my G+ profile to this blog changed the comment system to G+.

While I generally like G+, I feel like it's a bit to restrictive for general blog comments, and so for now I've disabled them in favour of the regular comment system. Hopefully that will encourage more people to comment on posts, but if it ends up just being a spam storm I'll have to figure something else out.


Monday, July 15, 2013

And Now, Bosses!

I really need to update this thing more frequently... XD

Today's update brings news of Bosses to CQX! Although heavily distracted by Skyrim the last week or so, I've been able to make some fairly significant progress. To start, I re-factored the collision detection system to be a bit more robust (or a lot, really). I've also gotten the Boss logic mostly implemented. Bosses will now spawn on the X9 waves like they're supposed to, and the Spider has had all his behaviours properly implemented!

Video after the jump!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The REAL CQX Update!

I promised an update and here it is!

So for those who don't know, my current project is CQX, or Casual Quest XNA (Working title). The project began as a direct port of a BYOND game by Jacob Brennan (IainPeregrine) called Casual Quest. After making significant progress on the project, and taking a long hiatus due to busy times, I finally picked it back up a couple months ago and began making great strides toward completion. Once I realized how quickly the project was progressing, I decided I should ensure I still had permission to continue. I was able to confirm my continued permission to continue relatively quickly, along with a friendly request; If I could manage to re-brand the project with new  art and a new title, it would be appreciated. Which brings us to today. (More details after the jump)

Quick CQX Update for those looking.

Just a quick update regarding CQX (The port of IainPeregrine's Casual Quest):

This project is currently in full and active development. I've acquired the talents of a new artist to assist with this project.

I'll be making a more detailed post this evening, but for now I'll leave you with a video I put together about a month ago: 

Details on progress and my plans to come.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Is this thing on? *taps blog*

It's been a while since i last posted anything here so i guess maybe it's time!

Not a whole lot has been going on of late of interest but there are a few things. To start, I've been giving myself a bit of a refresher on C++.

I started with Allegro 5 which is quite a nice little library. I built a simple little game engine skeleton to mirror, to some degree, the structure of an XNA game. The library seems to be really easy to use once you get setup (which is also fairly easy) and i was able to make significant progress in porting TinyGame (even if it isn't nearly as tiny anymore).

I next moved on to try out Cocos2D-X, a c++ cross platform port of iOS's Cocos2D. This ones setup proved to be much more of a pain. The documentation essentially has you adding a project to the existing solution which i find to be less than ideal. Once it is setup though, I found it even easier to use than Allegro in a lot of respects. I started work on a Tetris clone to try it out. The framework is fairly straightforward, though some things like keyboard input don't work out of the gate making things interesting on PC (makes sense as a mobile library I guess though).

Most recently I've returned to an older project of mine, currently labeled 2D Terrain Test. The core engine was already pretty stable, but I've been cleaning it up and adding new functionality. My primary objective is to fix the rope physics, but that requires a better environment to test in so I've been working on an in game level editor mode. The terrain system already supports several loading methods, both dynamic and from settings files, but there's currently no way to build them.

That's more or less all for now, not much for nearly a year without a post, but hey, there's been all sorts of distractions! =D Growing kids, Skyrim, Sleeping Dogs, Guild Wars 2, a myriad of indie games (Seriously though, if you're reading this go check out Intrusion 2 at your earliest convenience, it's epic!).