📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #7
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Thread: 📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #7

  1. #1
    Matt's Avatar

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    June 24th, 2016
    Los Angeles, California

    📰 The PixelCount Post - Issue #7


    ISSUE #7                         THE VALE, QUILL                         17 NOV 2017                         ONE BRASS

    Piggy Back Rides


    The Slacker Backer is open!

    Um...I mean, hello and welcome to another edition of The PixelCount Post! That's better. Much more professional.

    But yes, the glorious Slacker Backer (or Piggy Backer, as we've come to refer to it) is now open and you can check it out here. (A bit curious how certain words in this periodical can magically teleport you to other places). It was a surprisingly complicated affair to put together, code, and organize. Not only did I develop the entire Slacker Backer web pages but I also developed a newfound respect for anyone having to put one together; there's a shocking amount of work that has to go into it!

    It's definitely a sigh of relief to have it finished and it's been great seeing the positive responses to it over the last 24 hours. Already we've been getting new members joining the esteemed ranks of our backers. Additionally, many of you have seized the opportunity to upgrade your existing pledges to higher tiers for any rewards that had eluded your grasp the first time through. If any of you have questions or run into any snags with the Piggy Backer, please feel free to send us a message via carrier pig at this location.

    In other news, everyone's favorite Kynseed composer visited me last week here in fabled Los Angeles. It was incredibly unusual to actually have two PixelCounts working in the same room together, something that I don't think has properly ever happened before what with everyone working remotely and such. For once, asking a coworker a question was as easy as shouting across the room. He sat fairly close to me though, so I think the shouting annoyed him a bit. He managed to dabble on a few tracks during his visit, one of which is currently up for listening in the Dev Pub. That said, I did also make sure to take him on various hijinks adventures around LA. I'm the best bad influence.

    It's the Pits

    This week I took a look at mapping out the basic routes of the mines that lay silently underneath The Vale.

    Long ago, miners would head into these dark depths for precious ore but were scared away by Knockers and other foreboding presences. So now these dank and chilly underground halls stand eerily empty, and ore is obtained via import from other regions around Quill. The Fae-tainted tunnels and caverns can act as very handy shortcuts to the brave though. Distances don't seem to match and one can enter in the far south of The Vale and emerge in the north after just a short but very scary walk.

    Piecing together these mines has been a challenge, but with more tiles coming online it has been slowly easier to construct them. We also took delivery of more 'dressing' assets this week (variants of ovens and tables and windows), plus loads of new items to add some detail to the world. A little bit of prettying has also begun on the region known as North Gate, where Herbert Lemon stops children leaving The Vale and unwanted folk coming in. That's when he is not running around naked and putting blueberries in his beard while shouting "FARF!"

    Minus One Minus, Plus One Plus

    In what seems to be a continuing pattern, the flow stuff has taken a bit of a backseat to editor and game issues to fix. My aim for the week was to look into 3 big areas and several smaller parts to the flow during the week. The first was looking at how to layer tiles where they have an in-game height to them and so the player can be in front and behind them (so building walls and fences as the big examples). I decided the best course of action would be to extend my setup for buildings to include tiles. This went rather smoothly but did take one and a half days to get it setup and to check that it all worked with edge cases. Along the way, I found a code bug that had been there for maybe a month or two, which after a couple of hours investigation turned out to be a single minus sign (-) that should have been a plus sign (+). Doh! So area one was shaping up but the creation and editing of these buildings is not that efficient so will require more work to fit in.

    After that I ended up focusing on something completely different to the plan: the UI. I'd been slowly converting it over but decided that really it would be good to get it kicked into shape now as it does help the 'game feel' and it would help us review how much work remains. That has taken up another two days or so along with various discussions, importing, as well as fixes along the way - and that gets us to today! I'm now going to go back to two large areas (which are to do with NPCs) and at least get some progress on them for the next team build tomorrow. I should perhaps mention that all this is still making progress and definitely helpful for the long term. It just shows how plans even within a single week can change, so it's best to roll with it and at some point it'll get back to the flow's turn; and that turn should definitely be next week...surely!

    Do you find yourself wishing to gain membership to the fine establishment known as the Developer's Pub? Perhaps you wish to obtain a lovely collection of auditory delights that the youth call a 'soundtrack'? Or maybe you're a person of faith who needs to hear the good word of the Quill Lore Bible & Art Book?

    If so, then you need to join The Piggy Backer Brigade, an esteemed collection of individuals who like doing things at the last minute.

    To join, use any pointing device on your person and boop the pig above to be magically transported to the Piggy Backer recruitment center.

    Resident Pig Doodler: Lozz Logan

    Taking a Vision to Market

    My oh my, what a week it's been! With new energy after my trip to LA, I hit the ground running as, practically right after returning home, deadlines loom. More than four tracks require work before the month is over, and we're already half-way through November! This week also saw the release to the public of a track that's been incubating in the Dev Pub for a while. In the Dev Pub we were just calling it the 'Mystery Track' but now it's just called 'Peaceful'. Even in the game its fate has changed over time, as the region it was originally intended for got switched with another and then plans changed again. But it's not the only track to be shown to the public, as another is soon to be revealed. One I made on the other side of the planet. Technology is amazing! I can compose wherever I like because of a strange dark tome called a 'laptop', a magical book that surely must be Fae in origin. On the flip-side, now that I'm back home, I am most glad to have the full power of my main PC at my disposal.

    While I was away, I also worked on a track intended for a sort of market in the game. I had envisioned a very busy affair with much energetic hustle and bustle, but upon demoing it to the team it turned out that it wasn't quite right for what Charlie, the man with the plan, had in mind for it. He was at first hesitant to advise against changing the song entirely as he wanted to trust my expertise, but I told him to never be hesitant to suggest such things. So I redid the entire track from scratch. Why? Because it's important that, above all else, we chase a singular vision for the game. If we all go in different directions we end up going nowhere at all. In this particular case, that vision wasn't of a very busy market. It was a vision of a much more peaceful farmer's market where one leisurely peruses the stalls on display. Had I chosen to continue down the path I was originally going, the music and the game would have felt disjointed; it would have chased not one vision, but two. The new version of the track slows down the tempo a lot and adds some nice 'twang' to give it a more rustic rural feel. I did like the previous iteration of the track and, who knows, it might one day find its way to a new home in the game. But starting over to get it right - that's worth it wherever possible.

    Mr Fairweather's Winter Sale Now On!


    Choose from a number of amazing arcane artifacts in Mr Fairweather's Big Winter Sale! He has a huge range of items, hand-plucked from all kinds of exotic and dangerous dimensions. These bargains MUST GO!

    Chesney's Hawk Fork
    The finest cutlery that hovers over your food before diving into it and returning it to your arm, where you can eat it. It's the one and only!

    Ali Baba Yaga Yoga
    For beginners. An incredibly informative book that teaches you how to stretch your muscles and relax while sitting inside large pots in witches houses.

    Ten Pin Bowls
    Tiny dishes the size of a matchhead. There are 10 of them. Unwanted and totally misunderstood present.

    Star Wars Battlefront 2 for PS4
    Free to a good home, but will cost your soul if you want the good stuff.

    Abandoned Police Box
    Who cares?

    Bobbit's Half-cocked Hunting Rifle
    Doesn't shoot any more.

    Benny Codgers Lucille Balls
    Mysterious tuneful crystal orbs from a bygone era.

    Crosby's Bing Bong
    Smoking pipe that turns the land into a snowy wasteland corrupted by toy-making elves.

    Millie's Vanillary Cookie Monster Mash Potato Head Master Chief Chirping Chirping Cheap Sheep
    I have no idea what this is.

    Boomerang Grenade
    1 careless owner/inventor. No returns.

    Vincent's Doppleganger Machine
    2 for the Price of one.

    Knee-length False Leg
    50% off.
    Last edited by Matt; November 20th, 2017 at 01:14pm.

  2. #2
    God's Avatar

    Join Date
    June 29th, 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt View Post
    [...] where Herbert Lemon stops children leaving The Vale and unwanted folk coming in.
    Great to see that the inhabitants of the Vale are putting their trust in this great man.
    Also, Mr. Fairweathers Winter sale really reminds me of Murgo. I like what you did there!

  3. #3
    Jidairo's Avatar

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    July 19th, 2017
    How much for the abandoned police box?

  4. #4
    Charlie's Avatar

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    June 24th, 2016
    West Yorkshire, UK
    Mr Fairweather would sell Murgo's entrails as a fun edible skipping rope for cannibal kids.

  5. #5
    SirJeff's Avatar

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    June 29th, 2017
    "Boomerang Grenade"

  6. #6
    Forgetaboutme's Avatar

    Join Date
    September 26th, 2017
    behind you
    Crosby's Bing Bong,hah.

    Unfortunately I already sold my soul, so I really could make use of the Ali Baba Yaga Yoga...
    Don't panic!

  7. #7
    Not a fan of the new star wars game eh?

  8. #8
    Matt's Avatar

    Join Date
    June 24th, 2016
    Los Angeles, California
    Issue #8 of The PixelCount Post is now out, thus marking two solid months of released issues. Let the back patting commence!
    Everything in moderation, including moderation.

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