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Everything posted by RubixsQube

  1. So, let's talk about a weird video game here: Rusty's Real Deal Baseball Nintendo 3DS (I know that some of you are probably thinking: "oh, this is boring, I don't even have a 3DS," but please, hear me out.) Rusty's Real Deal Baseball (RRDB) is a downloadable 3DS mini-game collection / visual novel. In the game, you play as your Mii, and you talk with a weird anthropomorphic dog ("Rusty") and his ten kids (with names that are variants on Rusty, including Rustina, and Rust Tee). When I say "visual novel," I mostly mean that you'll end up talking to Rusty and advancing a story-line as you play through the mini-games. The story line is about a dog marriage on the rocks. It's funny in that way that Weird Nintendo way. Think...Wario Ware. But the real bulk of the time you'll be playing mini-games that revolve around baseball. There are 10 game modes, and they range from a one-button-pressing home run hitting game to one where you have to use the thumbstick to catch line drives, to a game where you play as an umpire and make split second decisions. Each game mode features challenge levels, as well as variants on each game (the home run game has different types of pitches, or little UFOs you have to hit with your home runs), and then a few high-score modes. The games, it seems, were built with the idea of Tim Rogers "friction" in mind (I can't link to that article enough), in that it just feels good to play. If you hit the ball with the sweet spot of the bat, the game just pauses imperceptibly ("sticky friction") and damn if it doesn't work well. Little neurons fire in your brain. You feel good. That's fun. I like having a portable system that makes tiny feel-good neurons fire in my brain. My favorite portable game of all time is Wario Ware Twisted, which is just pure portable perfection ("PPP"), and it seems as if the creators of RRDB have learned a lesson from the best weird Nintendo games. You know how good it feels to master a (god, linking to that fucking video just makes me want to play Rhythm Heaven Fever for another one million years)? It feels fantastic. RRDB know this. They've built a series of fun games that can be traced back to that particular river. Maybe you want a game that is the opposite of that! Well, keep reading, since there's still a damn TWIST to this story, and it's just as interesting as the game's content. SO. Let's say you want to play this game. Well, in the 3DS e-shop, you'll find out that the game is FREE! And you download it, and then you find out that only a DEMO is open, and the mini-games are only unlockable through in-app purchases! And you fret! Yes, you fret about the fact that it seems like each game is FOUR DOLLARS! And you do some very quick mental math and think: "is this game worth forty american dollars?" And you probably frown, because you probably think "no." That's ok! Because once you complete the demo, and you're presented with the option to purchase the full mini-game, one of Rusty's kids will pop in to let you know that you can haggle with Rusty over the price. Yes, you can talk to a video game dog and ply him with gifts and and listen to his sob story and he will reduce the actual price of each mini-game. From what I've read, you can potentially buy all of the games for a total that is less than half of the 40 dollars your initial mental math provided. This is a real weird way of doing in-app purchases, and one that I totally approve of. For one, you're only paying to unlock content you want to play, and not to unlock power-ups and new abilities. At the same time, while I can see someone saying: "why not make it possible for me to just pay to buy the whole thing, why do I have to 'haggle' for the lower price?" Well, this, I think, is part of what makes the game fun, I think. The haggling provides further dialogue with Rusty and his kid. This is fun. It provides an extra challenge. This is also fun. It's haggling, a stressful thing in real life, but with someone who is virtual! What are your thoughts on this weird business model? How do you feel about in-app purchases that unlock content? How do you feel about sticky friction?
  2. U P D A T E: THE GAME HAS BEEN RELEASED ON ITCH.IO. I have to do some more tweaking on the amazon echo version, but for now you can play a version in your browser with the game audio. It's ALMOST like playing it with an echo! I hope someone tries it out for the Showcase Weekend! ORIGINAL POST BELOW: For my S E V E N T H Wizard Jam entry, I am going to making a game based on Important if True Episode 53 Alexa, Destroy Me. I have to go to Amsterdam for work during the second week of the Jam, but hopefully this weekend and next week I can put something together. These Wizard Jams have always been so much fun, and I wouldn't want to start 2019 on the wrong foot. Important if True is a podcast about a lot of things, but I think one of the primary threads was the weirdness of current technology. In Episode 53, Jake and Chris (and glitchy roboNick) discuss the Amazon Echo, and it's Alexa Digital Assistant, at length, focusing on the weird laughing that some users reported. Eventually, the command phrase for triggering laughter became: "Alexa, can you laugh?" Chris brought up the inherent strangeness of asking a tiny cylinder if it's able to laugh. He's correct. The fact that people have tiny plastic boxes in their house now that they talk with on the regular is one of these frogs-in-slowly-rising-temperature-water things that defines modern living. You see, silicon valley engineers seemingly are so preoccupied with whether or not they can, they never stop to think if they should. So I'm gonna build an Alexa App. And it's gonna be triggered with "Alexa Destroy Me." And it's gonna explore the weirdness of talking with a ladies voice coming out of a mediocre speaker on a black plastic tube. I know that not many people own Amazon Echoes, so I'm trying to figure out how I might build the same program in Twine so that it can be played in browser, but I'd only do that if I can rig it to have Twine speak the lines, since that's more than half the fun. Last night I started my Amazon developer accounts and whipped up a simple adventure game model in order to see whether or not this was even possible, and it looks like it is. I think that I'm mostly worried about actually submitting the Alexa App through Amazon so that it can actually be played on an Echo. SO I HAVE A LOT OF WORK TO DO. I wonder if anyone else has any experience with Amazon Echo development! I wonder if Amazon will approve of whatever weirdness I write! I wonder if this was A Mistake!
  3. WIZARD JAM 8 // Showcase Weekend

    This weekend I streamed a few games, which you can watch here: I played: Always Support the Danger Layer (link to portion of the video here) This Crazy Robot - Pizza Tonight (link to portion of the video here) Shootie Pizza (link to portion of the video here) Meet the Kerfluffles (link to portion of the video here) Unmasking the Brain Burglar (link to portion of the video here) (I play through the entirety of this game and SUPPLY MY OWN VOICE ACTING FREE OF CHARGE) ALL VERY FUN, AND ALL WORTH PLAYING
  4. [Released on] Alexa, Destroy Me

    I released the game on, complete with all of the audio, in time for the Showcase Weekend . Think of it like an emulated version. I'm going spend a little more time making sure that all of the various utterances work on the Echo version, and hopefully submit that one soon!
  5. [Released on] Alexa, Destroy Me

    So, after a weekend mostly setting up the game, I've been able to spend the last few nights writing it all in Twine. I went and brainstormed a series of interesting ideas to play with for Choose Your Own Adventure style games and for Alexa in general, and I'm (very slowly) incorporating everything into the game. Alexa doesn't have the comic timing that I wish she had (although I think that if I get a chance to do some last minute polishing I can probably program some in with carefully placed break/pause commands), but she's got a fun voice to play with. Right now, much of the game is commanded with "go left" or "go right" or "yes/no" commands, and I will need to go through and fiddle with the intentions so that I can allow for more exciting inputs. Let's hope that I can get things done on the flight out to Europe this weekend. The most exciting aspect is that since my Echo is associated with my developer account, I can just turn around and gametest with an actual Echo in my room. I put an early clip from the game up on the slack channel, if you want to listen.
  6. [Released on] Alexa, Destroy Me

    @Synnah - that is the BEST NEWS that I could possibly hear. You've been really helpful with my Jam games in the past, and I definitely will let you know if I run into any problems. What I'd like to do is get everything set up so that all I have to do is fumble around with the Twine2 writing. Last night and tonight I: - Set up my Lambda function, and my core game files, and connected everything. - Tested this using the simulator - Fiddled with Amazon's example code so that I could include SSML commands in Twine2. This is VERY EXCITING since this means that I can make Alexa talk in different voices, or loudly, or in a whisper. Also, I can play their like, build in audio files, which are very goofy. - Rewrote the example code so that Alexa doesn't dictate the possible choices each time you enter a different Twine passage. I still need to fiddle with this, since I don't want to make a straight-up adventure game, and this is going to mean that I need to really understand the Intents and Utterances. The example code is built with classic utterances, and I'm still a little bit confused as to how a given Twine2 choice is picked from a given voice command. Also, I need to research Alexa trivia skills to see how to program an open-ended choice. I don't even know if that's possible in Twine. ANYWAY, it's been pretty fun and silly, it's just disappointing that there won't be any gifs to show in this thread, since my game is entirely audio!
  7. Stumbling around Hyrule - A Link to the Past Randomizer

    I've also been into LttP randomizer runs (and that dope Super Metroid / LttP randomizer run from GDQx a few months ago), but I kind of wish that I knew LttP better in order to try it out. I've beaten the game a handful of times, but I've never sought out 100% of the items, and my knowledge of any of the dungeons (or those giant rooms full of treasure chests) is a little lacking. I'd love to see the logic that goes into the randomization - you mentioned there was an Easy mode where no major glitches are required. Is there a place where this is all set out? Edit: Oh, I guess I should just go and look this up myself! There are some resources online here.
  8. Photos of things

    Ummm, I think that to be honest, they're cheaper brown dress shoes from H&M? I can double check when I get home, but I don't think they're the fanciest. EDIT: Confirmed, H&M brown dress shoes.
  9. Photos of things

    I got married a few weeks ago. Here are two images that I thought were pretty neat. The mountain behind us features the MMT, which you can see as a little white dot on the left side of Lara here (upside down, because it's artistic) Also these are my groomsfolks all looking like an ad for indochino. I am 100% sure that I used the code Thumbs at checkout to get my wedding suit.
  10. Recently completed video games

    I beat Hollow Knight this weekend, but only the Lame Ending, where I got something like 88% completion, and I AM HAPPY WITH THAT It's a good game with a stupidly slow opening that almost made me abandon it out of tedium. Once it opens up and like, you get a little bit more movement options, it's great, but man, that initial hump of like, boredom mixed with one very tough boss fight was not the best.
  11. Plug your shit

    If anyone wants to hear me ramble about my job working on a space telescope, or about science communication and gender representation in astronomy, I was a guest on the Talk Nerdy podcast this week. I said that Hubble was "almost 20 years old" when I actually should have said "almost 30 years old," because time has a way of continuing to pass and you think that the early nineties is much closer than it actually is. Death is around the corner everyone, so have a good tuesday
  12. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    I know that this is not going to be a super popular opinion, but another great answer for entertaining people in a goofy, approachable way for a while is the oft decried 1-2-Switch. I have pulled that out at a bunch of gatherings with friends and families and it's been really fantastically fun. Here's a photo my Dad and my wife getting ready for a showdown (on my parent's homemade back patio tiki bar): we had more than a few hours of goofy laughter and fun. Overcooked and Jackbox are fine, but Jackbox requires a group of people who are all at around the same level of humor understanding, and Overcooked requires a bunch of people who want to work together and can communicate well. 1-2-Switch mostly just requires two people to play a simple game together, with people watching.
  13. [Released] häx_processer

    This may be my favorite game from this year's jam! (here's a hyperlink directly to the part where I play the game) As I mentioned at length in the slack channel, this is super reminiscent of what I do at my work sometimes, so it was fun to see it codified into a pretty winning game. Thank you!
  14. [dev log] A Wish Upon A Star

    I played a few levels and then got hopelessly stuck last night: (here's a link directly to me playing your game) I must have been overlooking something completely obvious. I am also profoundly bad at reading instructions, so maybe I missed a key bit of explaining. It's such a gorgeous game, and I'm sad that I couldn't progress any farther!
  15. [RELEASED] A Wish Upon A Star

    I think you saw this last night, but here's my run through of (part of) your charming game: (here's the link directly to the part if the player doesn't do what it's supposed to) I really wish I had thought to right click on the rock to be mined, I'm such a dummy. This was very relaxing, as you probably were hoping, and the voice acting was great!
  16. [Released-ish] The Fresno Experiment

    I played your game last night! (link to exact time if this player doesn't do it right) I really enjoyed it, even in its weird rough unfinished state. Up until I realized that I didn't know if I had discovered all of the content there was in the game.
  17. Now baby, I hear the blues a' callin'... UPDATE: It's done. It's...certainly something. I have a feeling there are a bunch of weird bugs. I can address those later this week. But for now, enjoy this weird mess. ORIGINAL POST: For my SIXTH Wizard Jam entry, I am going to making a game based on Important if True Episode 44 Stream Frasier Online Free. I was at first worried that perhaps I didn't have time for this summer jam, but I didn't want to break my streak, and I also really this weird way of being creative. I'm super proud of my Wizard Jam games! For this game, I kind of want to make a very simplistic toy, instead of a game, although depending on how I do this, it could be interactive. In the episode, Jake hypothesized creating a bot that just creates a bunch of random Frasier episodes. I think that I can do this. Over the last week I've been fiddling around with the transcripts from the entire run of Frasier, parsing all of the lines out to generate files with every line from each of the main characters. Armed with this, I'm using the python script markovify to generate random lines. Many of them are nonsensical, but there are some real gems. I am hoping to spend some time coming up with a huge amount of random lines, and then I'll generate fake scripts for the player. Here are some examples: Frasier: Niles: Daphne: ...etc etc etc So, it'll get better as we add more and more lines, but for now, it's making me giggling, which is always a fun point in any Wizard Jam. Now, the issue is trying to make a game that allows me to generate simple cut-scenes on the fly. I might want to contact @nkornek because his game in the last jam, This Is Celebrity Explainer, is kind of a template for how I want this game to be, except instead of mixing up a cool weird celebrity, it mixes up a cool weird Frasier Script. If I can't get things working the way I want them with Unity, I may just do this in Twine instead, which would be fun. WE WILL SEE.
  18. [Released] Stream Frasier Online Free

    @Teljoor - I appreciate your playing my game, and I definitely agree that something is a little wonky with line selection. I'm sure that if I spent more time with Fungus, I could make something that worked, but Fungus is surprisingly difficult to fumble around with unless you go and change the Unity assets themselves. @Zirrrus - I think that I agree about the shift coming a little suddenly. I didn't want bore my players, but it's hard to maintain a balance in an indie game between keeping things moving and also maintaining a steady tone in a compelling way. I am also glad to hear the game is clicking for people who have no Frasier experience. That's a weird bonus. @Nappi - I was ALSO surprised how the markov chain did at making gibberish sentences that kind of seemed like sentences the character might say. I found myself reading the lines in the voice of the character in my head, which was weird. Thanks for playing! @pdotjpg - Thank you for playing. I have not played David Lynch Teaches Typing, but mostly because I don't have a lot of knowledge of Lynch. But maybe that will make it more weird and fun? I should check it out. @nkornek - I SHOULD ADD THAT AS A FEATURE. I don't know why I didn't think of that, thank you! Thank you everyone who has checked out this weird game!
  19. [Released] Our Weird Monstrosity

    This game was Very Fun. I had to play it across two parts, although part 2 is just my attempt at creating The Dot Gobbler from the quick shot at the beginning of the game. (And I failed spectacularly.) (I got a very important phone call ending this part)
  20. [Released] They Came Through the Floor

    I played this game! And it was fun, if perhaps PRETTY DIFFICULT ON A KEYBOARD. You can watch me fumble around with the game (and probably, pronouncing your name, sorry!) here: I am ALSO sorry that I was super oblivious at first as to what was going on.
  21. [Released] George Fan

    I played your game, and I liked it a lot. You can watch my reaction here: I am wondering if...
  22. [RELEASED] The Convergence Compulsion

    I played your very fun game! And, against all odds, I completed it. You can watch me play the game here: I have a feeling that on a few of the puzzles I Look Like An Idiot Who Has Ignored The Obvious Route. OH WELL.
  23. I played the prologue and DID POORLY. It turns out, the public is not as interested in Jurassic Park: Mostly Veggisaur Edition. What a fun text game! Thank you.
  24. [Released] Buried Treasure

    Hello! I played your game, and it was super fun. I streamed it on Twitch, which you can watch here: (It's important that you understand that I was in a Silly Mood, which is why I did a lot of silly rhyming songs later into the game.)
  25. [Released] Stream Frasier Online Free

    Thank you! I think that's what I was going for? I think that this might be the box quote for the physical release. "Baffling and Compelling" - Atlantic I think that, devoid of any Frasier knowledge, this must have been highly inscrutable. I don't know if I'd recommend Frasier, to be honest. In a world where there are so many diverse new things to watch, Frasier sticks out as a weird remnant of a simpler time. Frasier is a spin-off of Cheers, following one of the stuck-up (non working class) side characters as he moves away from Boston). The show centers around this guy (Frasier Crane) and his brother, both Wealthy Upper Class brothers living in Seattle. Both brothers are psychiatrists, but one of them is a psychiatrist on the radio. Essentially the show was like, "A Sitcom For Snooty Coastal Liberals", where it's overly clever and painfully, painfully white. I watched a bunch of the show putting the game together, and while it's charming, and it has it's die-hard fans, it's unnecessary, especially nowadays. On the topic of Stream Frasier Online Free, (and this will have spoilers):