Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Do you have ESP? Let's make an app for that!

I came to learn about extra sensory perception (ESP) when I first watched Ghostbusters movie back in the 1980s. There was a funny scene where the Zener cards were being used on 2 students. Watch the film clip here:

The students were supposed to guess the symbol that was shown on the card. There are 5 symbols altogether.

It can be a fun guessing game and I think it will be simple to make using a game making software like gamesalad.

To get started right-click and download these 5 individual images below:

Next start up Gamesalad and create a new project and call it ESP.

Import the 5 images you have downloaded into Gamesalad's media library. You can click on the "+" sign and look for the images in your computer.

Next create an actor by clicking on the "+" sign at the bottom left corner and rename "actor1" to ZenerCard.

Double click on the actor ZenerCard and change it's size attributes to  width 79 and height 124. This is the size of the 5 images you have just downloaded previously.

Next add an attribute of an "integer" type. You can do this by clicking on the "+" sign on the bottom left corner.

Rename that integer attribute "count".

Next we'll give instructions to the computer by creating a "Rule". Click on "Create Rule" on the top right corner.

Then select "touch" from the drop-down menu.

Next create another Rule, select "attribute" from the drop-down menu.

Click on the empty field next to it and select "ZenerCard" and then double-click on "count".

Next on the Behavior library, select and drag the "Change Attribute" behavior into the second rule you created.

Now click on the first empty field and select "ZenerCard" and then double-click on "count".

After that click on the "e" button next to the second empty field. We will add a math function called random.

Change the random(min,max) to random (1,5).

Next open the "otherwise" section found at the bottom of this Rule and then add another "change Attribute" behavior into that Rule that will change self.count to 0.

Now drag this Rule into the first Rule we created (the one with the touch is pressed)

Great! The touch system of the card is now in place, all we have to do now is to make the actor change its picture whenever it picks a number from 1 to 5.

Make another Rule, select Attribute again and select ZenerCard >> count. Change the value of the next field to = 1
Next drag the behavior called "change image" into the Rule. Select the circle image.

Make another 4 more rules for the rest of the images. Make sure you change the self.count to their respective numbers. For example circle is self.count=1, cross is self.count=2, etc.

Finally make another similar Rule for when self.count = 0

Make sure you remember to save your project.

If you haven't dragged the ZenerCard actor onto the stage, let's do it now.
Click on the back button or the "scene" button found on the top left corner.

Watch this animated GIF to see the game in action!

This simple game has got no scoring system. You might wish to create your own. Another idea is probably to add a timer. Also you might want to create a 2 player game for this. Explore and have fun!

A short URL to this page is:


Monday, 1 February 2016

I finally made good use of my iPad

I rarely use my iPad except for the occasional testing of my games and also to read articles on Flipboard. The iPad to me seems like a great surface to draw something on but I never got around to use it as such. I've tried several drawing apps like autodesk's sketchbook and Fifty Three's Paper.

I thought they were good. But I quickly lost interest in them and I never returned to sketching on my iPad. Until now.

I decided to try using Adobe's Sketch and Illustrator Draw.

I was pleasantly surprised that the tools and navigation system within the app is minimal and very intuitive. The in-app tutorials were short and simple but yet enabled me to understand very quickly what the tools do. But the best thing about the app is that I could transfer to Adobe CC programs on my mac if I wanted to or just export a JPG file of it and send it to my mac and begin working right where I left off.

For my first try, I thought about detailing an artwork done by Lim HangKwong. So I imported a high resolution image of the bakery building into the app on my iPad.

I then began adding details to it using an inexpensive Monteverde touch screen stylus pen. I haven't had so much fun sketching in a very long time.

Adobe Sketch is a very good app to use. I highly recommend it. I'll post up a review of the Adobe Illustrator Draw in the next blog post.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

How to quickly create an animation

Animations in games are super important. They make the games look more interesting and the characters in them come alive.

One of the simple ways I do to quickly create an animation is by referencing another already made animation. For example the game I'm currently working on right now requires a cat playing the piano.
I couldn't afford the time to create a super high quality animation from scratch so what I did is to get an animation like this:

and then extract individual frames from this animated gif to base off my drawings. The resulting animation is this:

This looping animation of the cat playing piano comprises of 12 frames in total.

I create all frame-by frame animation using Flash CS3.

I will post a video on youtube soon to give you a detailed look at how I did it.
Each frame of an animation do not need to be perfect. The overall effect of the animation that gives it a fluid motion is more important.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Why a french bakery game?

I've been wanting to create a game that has a story set in a European countryside for a long time now. That thought has been on my mind while I was creating Satay Club game. I remember playing the game done by THQ called Star Wars: Cantina back in 2010-2011. It was a simple game but what caught my attention was the artwork! I fell in love with the hand-painted style.

If you're thinking of trying out Star Wars Cantina game, sorry mate it's no longer available for download! THQ went under in 2013 and I think Disney pulled the game down from the stores. I still have the game on my iPad because I still enjoy playing it. I won't ever delete this game because once it's gone I can't get it anywhere else anymore! What a shame!

I'm sure most of you still have Kopi Tiam game installed on your devices and occasionally bust it out and play it again even after you have completed ALL the levels with 3 stars achievement; because somehow it still brings joy to you. I know that feeling! :)

So in any case that I am no longer in game development, I think I'll still put the game up at the stores, or make it available on my website or on this blog. But I think to be safe, if you still have it on your device make a backup of it on your computer. Just in case!

So anyway back to that hand-painted style. Yes, I wanted a hand-drawn style art for my french bakery game and I got the help of a Singaporean artist Lim HangKwong whom I got to know while I was at the various game conventions recently in 2015 promoting Satay Club game. He did most of the artwork for the Kancheong Game and I was really impressed. So expect a beautiful artwork for the home screen in the French bakery game!

I love bread. Good bread. Artisanal bread. Pastries, cakes, cookies and more. I love baked goods.
But I made some changes to my diet recently. I rarely eat bread nowadays and now if I do eat bread I will only consume breads that are made from rye, spelt, quinoa and other ancient grains. Breads made from wheat do not agree with my body. Oh and of course these breads must not contain any milk or eggs. Same goes with pastries. No animal products please!

You can find rye bread from Giant Supermarket. Or you can go to several artisanal bakery shops near your area. I came across a news article about European bread getting more popular in Singapore. I thought that was interesting.

Asians love soft white bread. Hard bread takes a bit of getting used to. I read a funny comment about rye bread describing the texture and taste: "A cross between cardboard and carpet". Hilarious.
Anyway, the same goes with rice. Asians love white rice. They are soft and turns to mush in your mouth without much effort. White rice turns sticky and gooey very easily in your gut too, but that's a topic in my other blog for another day.

Lack of updates and blogging more!

Sorry for the lack of updates everyone!

I realized my last post was made last month. Will be sharing more insights with all of you from today onwards. I'm thinking of a weekly or even a daily post. So stick around!

Sunday, 20 December 2015

New game coming soon!

The mechanics of the game is almost done! However I haven't finished drawing out all the characters yet. And that's the hard part. If you're waiting for this game to be released, I hope you'll be patient :)

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Top scorer for Ice Cream Uncle Game level 60

The competition has ended and we have a winner!
Elizabeth Absalon is the top scorer for Ice Cream Uncle Game's level 60 with a score of 3504!

The runner up is Connie Aw with a score of 1062.

Only one winner will be selected however. For those who didn't win do not lose heart. There will be another competition for my next game!

Congratulations to Elizabeth! Please contact me to claim your prize :)