Saturday November 27, 2010
PikPok's latest game exclusively for the iPad is Zen Puzzle Garden, a game originally done for PC by Joseph White of Lexaloffle. The idea of the game is to rake the sand in the garden, but there are three rules to adhere to:
- You will keep raking in a straight line until you hit an obstacle or the other side of the sand
- You cannot rake over previously-raked areas
- You must be able to rake all the sand and step off the garden at the end
I've thoroughly enjoyed working on this game, despite the various challenges that the iPad's touch screen poses to developers and game designers (maybe I'll elaborate on this another time). I've learned an immense amount from watching people play-test the game and found it interesting to compare people's natural intuitions when trying to complete the gardens.
Again, the small project team size meant I was able to have my hand in several different game domains; I was responsible for input, UI, level editing and serialisation and game logic. You can even find some hot A Star action in there somewhere. Definitely one of the highlights of my year.
Wednesday November 24, 2010
The whole country mourns with the people who have lost fathers, husbands, brothers and sons in New Zealand's worst mining disaster in 96 years. The first explosion occurred last week, trapping 29 men in the Pike River mine; all 29 lost their lives when a second explosion occurred this afternoon.
I'm so sorry for your losses.
Thursday November 4, 2010
So after a wonderful 8 hour drive with Bryce (and Vaughan, for half the trip), I finally have my car in Wellington. The weather was sunny with a bit of cloud as we made our way down State Highway 1. At one stage, a bird flew right in front of the car and it HIT the bonnet and bounced off my windscreen >_> Survival of the fittest, eh?
This week has also been quite busy in my social calendar. James, one of our game designers, left for Canadialand today, but I caught up with him at Monsoon Poon on Monday for all-you-can-eat Firecracker Chicken (YUM!) and the Blood Drive launch party yesterday.
Blood Drive is the action-packed zombie killing game with "motorized death steeds of steel" (according to Activision's marketing team). Having been on the iPhone team for the past year, I didn't actually contribute to the game at all, but despite its idiosyncracies and the fact I don't really play driving games, I think the game looks nice and there's no doubt that the team worked incredibly hard on it. Last night was for them to celebrate its completion and to have a good time.
It was an optional-costume party, so it was entertaining to see the many zombie and zombie-hunter costumes around. I myself went as a zombie tourist (a tourist who takes pictures of zombies, not an undead tourist). Pictures in the gallery!
Today, it was Andrew's birthday so he shouted us a lunch at Leuven. Surprisingly, no one ordered mussels, but instead our meals ranged from steak and lamb rump to the fish of the day and some gigantic lamb pie in a bowl that actually looked quite impressive.
This weekend, there's Guy Fawke's on Friday, badminton and a barbeque at Charles' on Saturday, music on Sunday and all-round relaxing!