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Here is a Walking Escapist (30 Jan 2005 at 23:37)
Here is a Walking Escapist
Unless you count Zelda or Halo 2, this is about the only thing I accomplished this weekend. Boy, it is sure easy to spend a long time tweaking low-res animations pixel by pixel. This is for the new animation (not yet visible) in my puzzle game escape.
Categories:  drawings  video games  escape (7 comments)   [ comment ]
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UPD: Hockey is Lif (18 Jan 2005 at 00:47)
Due to repeatedly having to see the massive problems in my most recent font Hockey is Lif on Jason's Weblog (as he works his project to 'cool' the font a bit into a sort of monstrous, distended Helvetica), I silently uploaded a new improved version of the font. How uncrapartlike!

In other extended project news, I have been also silently working to add animation and sound to Escape. Sound is about 1% done, but animation is probably at least half done. Be on the lookout for "Beta 2" soon!
Categories:  video games  escape  fonts (9 comments)   [ comment ]
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Tomor Da (27 Sep 2004 at 01:03)
Happy birthday to me! I am now 25, a nice perfect square.

Today, my good health insurance expires (now I'm stuck with crummy student insurance) but my car insurance becomes cheaper.

In poker this evening, I almost quintupled my money. Thanks, poker gods!

I am still trying to figure out what my thesis will be about. This is probably the hardest part of graduate school so far.

About a month ago, I put out a proper Beta release of Escape, which I never mentioned here. Check it out! While people hunt for bugs and make levels, I have moved on to my next project, which is to get a head start on my nanowrimo for this year. This is that thing where you write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November. I did it last year with satisfying results, but I decided this year to change my strategy a bit. First, I am trying to ease the word pressure by writing ahead when I'm in the mood (it can be really painful to do 1700 words a day, especially after a long day of work...). Second, I am going to put a lot more illustrations in this book, perhaps aiming for 175 pages rather than 50,000 words. (It annoys me that illustrations don't normally count towards the goal, since they take significant time to do, and I think they make books more interesting!) I may not meet the stringent requirements of the project, but I'll have another "novel" by the end of November.

Word count: 3472
Categories:  video games  escape  nanowrimo (18 comments)   [ comment ]
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UPD: escape server (06 Aug 2004 at 18:37)
The escape server now has an RSS feed of new levels with screenshots. Thanks, libpng!

By the way, I expect to have a proper "beta" of escape sometime in the next week or so. There's just one more major feature on the critical path.
Categories:  video games  escape   [ comment ]
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UPD: photo gallery, etc. (01 Jun 2004 at 19:56)
We swung by the Pittsburgh zoo this weekend, and I snagged a few photos before my camera's battery ran out.

Mike and I are printing up photos for "budget chic" decoration of our apartment. This is sweet.

I beat Metroid: Zero Mission in two days; 3:36 of game time. It was pretty easy, but I recommend it if you like that platform collect-the-items style. Getting 100% of the items is significantly more difficult; there are loads of infuriating dash-recharge-dash-etc. puzzles to solve.

The passport office totally screwed up my passport order; they forgot to take my birth certificate and somehow attached someone else's to my application. They seem to think it will all be fixed in time for my trip.

Today I had a minor type theoretic emergency as I discovered that my current design for the new version of our mobile lambda calculus won't work. I am pretty sure I understand how to fix it, but I hate the feeling of beginning the day with the belief that I'm almost done, and ending knowing that I am less done than I thought. As I've lamented before, I like to live monotonically.

Also, over the holiday weekend I got some good hacking done on escape. Now I'm adding ridiculous things like a pattern-based search and replace feature and automated level generation (assistance) based on retrograde analysis, which means I must be getting pretty close to a "1.0" release.
Categories:  video games  escape (15 comments)   [ comment ]
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News: ESCAPE (10 May 2004 at 14:07)
I'm currently helping to "proctor" an exam, which really just means sitting still for three hours watching the squirming, tortured faces. That's not very fun. (Although, in contrast, we can all breathe a collective sigh of relief when it's over!)

Aside from finishing up grading and being sick, I spent much of the weekend hacking on escape. Players can now rate levels that they play, which will (I hope) let me assess which levels are best so that I can create a collection of high-quality "Official" levels. The capability to submit puzzles that you make is already there, so if you're looking for something to do as your bored summer begins, I would love for you to try it out. Very soon will be a "1.0" release, at which time I'll make a nicer web page and try to expose the game to more than just readers of this weblog.

In other related news, Adam made a fantastic port of Escape to the Nintendo for his NES development class project. He managed to implement all the game rules, and all of the 18x10 levels are supposed to be included in it. I made some box artwork (complete with laser background) for the game. He's in the final polishing stages now... it will be available for download soon!
Categories:  drawings  video games  escape (59 comments — 10 years ago)   [ comment ]
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Escape Alpha (20 Oct 2003 at 16:22)
With the TODO list dwindling, I decided to put out an alpha version of my game "Escape" for friends to play with. That includes anybody who visits my radar page!

To try it, get escape-alpha.zip (windows) or escape-alpha.tar.gz (x86 linux).

Read the alpha release notes to know how to use it. I'm sorry that the documentation is so sparse, so, if you have any questions post them here and I will help. However, I think the game is pretty straightforward, and it comes with tutorial levels to explain how to play without any boring reading.

Despite being an alpha release, I think you'll find the game quite stable and featureful. The main thing that's missing is the online level browser and rating system, which, when completed, will constitute the 1.0 release of the game. In the meantime I'm looking for more clever puzzles to go into the "official" collection, so, if you're up to it, send me your creations!
Categories:  video games  escape (11 comments)   [ comment ]
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Escape Milestone (25 Sep 2003 at 19:50)
I don't think I've mentioned this here before. In some spare time I've been porting my old DOS puzzle game Escape (don't go there, the download is broken) to modern operating systems using the SDL. The port works pretty well, though it lacks the polish for a proper release. (Soon!) But today I reached a milestone: I solved the last of 100 levels that were originally released with the game. This is important because I wanted to make sure I hadn't changed anything in the reimplementation that made levels unsolvable or trivial (in fact I had, so some levels needed to be fixed), and because the new web-based level archive assumes that each level has a mechanized solution that can be checked. Anyway, if anyone's interested in trying it out, even at this early stage, send me some good puzzles and perhaps they will be included in the "official" level collection!
Categories:  video games  escape (1 comment)   [ comment ]
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