Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #43 (BronyCon in the Future)


     Progress is steady but big changes are coming on my end. I'm shifting focus from art to programming and design but I'm also shifting my pipeline from PC to Mac because my poor old Dell computer is literally falling apart. Pieces come off, the display glitches out unless plugged in via HDMI, there's a 40% chance to freeze crash whenever I shut down, and the fan barely works no matter how much I clean it out.

     I've successfully pushed the laptop to the limit, but I've got this $1600 machine over here (a rip-off, I know) that could become my new gamedev hub. Get more on that, BronyCon 2016 hype, and some details on what ideas I've been drafting in today's Yotes DevLog.

Lots of abilities. 90 to be exact.
New (temporary) title screen for my school project.
Once it's done I can decorate it as BGP.
I'm using Pokemon sprites for my school project to cut down on time.
The sooner it's done, the sooner I can fix BGP's battle system.
  Completed:
  • Reserved BronyCon 2016 Hotel Room  (Convention Center Hilton this time!)
  • Transitioning Work Over to Macbook
  • Purchased Thunderbolt to HDMI Cable for Multiscreen Macbook Work
  • Placeholder Tilesets from Pokemon for School Project (RoShamBo)
  • Drawn Maps for Next Demo's Overworld
  • Drafted NPC AI Programming
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors Battle/Overworld Gameplay Loop
  • RoShamBo Project & Presentation Planning
  • Submitted BGP Panel to BronyCon
     Lessons Learned:
  • Time suddenly decided to speed up. How is it almost the end of October already!?
  • I finally started watching Bojack Horseman and it's inspiring me creatively.
  • I've also beaten Catherine and looked up all the endings. No spoilers, but it got me thinking about deeper storytelling and haunting players' thoughts once the controller is put down.
  • I have to record my own panel somehow this year. That seems to be the only way to get footage of it up on YouTube in a reasonable amount of time. BronyCon still hasn't posted official footage of anything other than their ceremony animation.
  • Politics and stuff ate up an entire workday. Gotta avoid doing that again.
  • Got on a serious political kick recently thanks to marathoning shows like Adam Ruins Everything, Conversation with Colin, Last Week Tonight, and Personal Time with Greg. Soon I started searching for and sharing Countable and other organizations fighting for government transparency. I even spent a whole morning writing feedback to make the mobile app more accessible.
  • Realized that if I was as rich as Scott Cawthon (or immortal), I would dedicate my life to getting politics back into the hands of honest people and tackle the Earth's problems one at a time while making video games on the side. But since I have neither of those attributes I'll have to settle for being a vocal participant in politics.
       I'm backing up everything more often these days because each month I discover a new problem with the Dell laptop I've had since the end of 12th grade. It's lasted throughout my college career as intended (much like my decaying car) but it's time to start thinking of what to get next. I even already have an Asus in mind, but that's an objective that can wait until after BGP is out.

     For now I'm trying to use my Macbook more. The reasons I use the Dell over the Mac include a lot of my asset creation tools being Windows exclusive (when I checked 3 years ago), my comfort with the Windows trackpad over the one-button magic pad, and the fact that my entire digital life lives in my Windows based hard-drive making me feel rather close to it.

I've gotta get more use out of this thing.
My only other option is literally falling apart.
     To shake off those worries I hunted down Mac versions of each piece of software I used for gamedev. It's better to get whatever components I need to make the Mac work with my pipeline the way Windows does before even I think about replacing my decaying Dell. If it just becomes my gaming and goof-off machine then replacing it is a matter of luxury which is at the bottom of my shopping list as a soon-to-be graduate.

     Another thing I needed was a dual monitor setup for the Macbook. Macs amazingly don't have HDMI ports but just the proprietary Thunderbolt instead. I needed a special cable to connect it to my second monitor so I ordered one. Now I can start using my Mac more and keep the Dell as a backup and gaming device. This is honestly a step I should have taken months ago.
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   Downloads:

21,500 total Unicorn Training downloads!
   It's income like this that makes it possible for me to spend a few dollars on things like dual monitor cables while still climbing toward my $625 LLC license goal. I won't need it until tax season blows by, but I'd still like to get to that point sooner rather than later.

    Featured:


     I'm seeing a lot more Yotes Games Facebook activity recently which spells out nice things for the future. Still hope to see huge spikes in likes with each demo release. Hopefully you'll all be playing one in early November.

I'm also pretty talkative on DeviantArt.


     Although it's not a "feature" yet, I'm hoping something comes of this submission. Last year went really well and some BronyCon staff even told me personally that my panel was one of the best. Odds are someone will remember me and make sure to include me on the schedule. I can only hope to get as good a time slot as last time. The timing was perfect and the only thing I could've possibly done to draw more attendees was to be more well-known.

Let's see if I can drop some jaws this year.
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     I'm getting all excited over here. My favorite part of the week was drawing BGP's demo maps on graph paper and flipping through old Pokemon strategy guides to analyze their map layouts and the design philosophies behind them. There's a certain magic that fires off in my head once I can physically see the world I'm making. Can't wait to share the build with you guys.

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