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Leaving on a Jet Plane

I guess my posts here have been a bit rambly so far [you don't say — ed]. I suppose it probably means I could use an editor [ya think? — ed], but I don't have one [that's true, too — (non-existent) ed]. So I'll just have to try and keep things a bit more focused this time on my own. It's not really that easy when you're jet-lagged like I am right now (and already was a bit short on sleep starting the process I wrote the last post)[1], which I suppose is just a bit ironic, since I haven't actually gone anywhere at all.

Yet, anyway... In a couple of days I'll be on a plane to Brussels (and then catching the train to Köln) and I am pretty tired right now because I'm sleeping days (i.e., not very well. Too warm, too bright, too noisy).

Originally, the plan was to head to Köln and shift my schedule there before heading along and meeting the wife (for the real reason I'm heading to Europe — to attend a wedding. Not ours. We're already married. Obviously). But then things changed, I no longer have a fixed schedule, and now I'll show up and (hopefully) won't be too jet-lagged at all (maybe a little, though, I guess we'll see). But... The tickets were procured long ago, so I'll mostly be taking it as a programming retreat, I guess. That's what I did last time I was in Germany (for exactly the same purpose, getting used to the time change before meeting the wife — though in London that time). I basically just worked from a friend's apartment while adjusting. This time, though, just working, I guess, no adjusting. I like Köln quite a bit, so it's good, and I was pretty productive doing it last time, so that's good too.

So, uh... If you're anywhere near Nordrhein-Westfalen and reading this (yeah, right? It does seem unlikely, apart from people I already know there — much too early for GDC Europe and such this year) drop me a line. :)

In more on-topic news, I've dived quite a bit more into Unity and, uh... It's basically been a story of overcoming hatred, because, um, well... The adjectives I'd use for Unity right now (at least for the Mac version integrated with MonoDevelop) are unintuitive, opaque, fragile, and worst of all, buggy. In a word, frustrating. I'm not exactly impressed; as an IDE it's hands-down the worst I've ever used. Still, I've... Come to some accommodation with it, you might say (and I'm most certainly not willing to write my own cross-platform framework, as not-very-tempting at all as that might be sometimes). I've gotten pretty much all of the internal game logic (and unit-ish tests — some of the tests are a bit integration-y) working, now it's just time to try and get the GUI finished. If Ai-chan gets the music done while I'm gone, I might be able to integrate everything and release it fairly soon. We'll see.

I did throw some of the excessively ambitious ideas for the word game overboard, though, while I was testing and refactoring things into some semblance of maintainability; some of the things I wanted to do were a bit too computationally expensive, even pre-calculated. Too many permutations, oy, should have known. So out they went.

Anyway, as my schedule has shifted and my fatigue has gotten a bit more chronic, I've also taken a break from the word game and done some more design work on TSC2 (which I'm not sure I'll actually call TSC2... Though to be honest the word game doesn't have a name yet, either, not even a working name). I've also been playing TSC a fair bit and taking notes looking at the flaws I may not have noticed before when I was closer to it — there really are a lot of things that need to be reworked, and I've got lots of ideas for both structural and feature improvements.

There's one really, really big design decision left to make, though — do I put significant effort into making the game mobile-friendly (up to and including the question: do I make a mobile version at all?), or just optimize it for desktop? It can't really be good at both, to be completely honest. Given that TSC was (essentially) a mobile game first, well. In hindsight I know why that happened, but it really did make a lot of things hard to do that I think would make for a much better desktop game. So I'm mulling over some design decisions there right now.

So, tschüss! Next post will probably be from Europe... Somewhere.

[1] ob-jetlag: 時差ぼけが大変ね。


Tags: travel, tsc2, unity, word game

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These are Doug's bloggish thoughts on game development, specifically on the games he's writing for Lensflare, or on Lensflare-related topics more generally. Or whatever he wants to write here, really, but those are the sorts of things to expect. Doug has strong opinions (loosely held) about many things — he could claim that he doesn't speak for Lensflare Games, but that'd be silly considering that (for all practical purposes) he is Lensflare Games. Still (for what little it matters) he's not always wearing that hat here. And yes, this is an actual picture of Doug (okay, not really, but the story behind it is too long to go into right now).

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