PRE-SPRINT 12 – MERRY QUITMAS – PLANNING

MERRY QUITMAS

Week of December 25th, 2016

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

  • The state of our WARP CORP is holding steady at almost freakishly strong
  • The Extinction-Level-Event (ELE) is holding steady at a remarkable 28 weeks away. Still unbelievable!

Not much to say at this point! Everything is happening so fast…this Friday is the day I put my 2-week notice in. I have a lot of thoughts on the matter – too complicated, too personal, and frankly too boring to share even here.

I will say this: I am grateful for the time I had with this job. I am very grateful for the time I had with my coworkers. I’m grateful for the money I was able to save up.

Most importantly, though, I’m grateful that I figured out things weren’t working before it was too late.

It’s hard not think of it in terms of one life ending and another beginning – cliches, but they feel true.

This is the last week of MEGA-MONTH. This is the final stretch, the last chance to cut spending and save as many pennies as I can find.

Let’s do it.

Thank you.

SPRINT GOALS

I usually list out multiple goals here, but this sprint has one major one:

  • Figure out which engine I’m using!

Since November I’m been futzing about with Love2d and Lua. I’ve flipped flop mightily on this, as while I love (pun intended) Love2d and Lua as a language, it’s not exactly future-proof. It runs on PC, Linux, and Mac, but what of console ports? What of support generally? Do I feel comfortable enough basing my entire life on a relatively unproven platform?

The other engine in contention is Gamemaker – specifically Gamemaker Studio. Why? Well, it’s an engine I know how to use. I feel pretty comfortable with it. And I know it’s proven with other commercial games – a huge point for me.

We’ll see. It seems like Gamemaker is the ‘obvious’ choice, and at this point I think I’ll need to be talked out of it to change my mind.

PRE-SPRINT 11 – CASE OF THE MONDAYS – PLANNING

CASE OF THE MONDAYS

Week of December 18th, 2016

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

  • The state of our WARP CORP is almost freakishly strong after a last-minute push of savings
  • The Extinction-Level-Event (ELE) is now at an incredible 28 weeks away. Unbelievable!

MEGA-MONTH lumbers past the halfway mark and aims its way forward to the finish line. With two paychecks and a birthday under its belt, you would think its insatiable hunger would, indeed, be satiated, but the look in its eyes is anything but satisfied…

SPRINT GOALS

There’s less than two weeks until I give my two week notice. Assuming my math checks out, that leaves me with just under four weeks to prepare for a graceful and prepared exit.

Unlike previous attempts at sticking to a series of goals, I’ll instead just dump out a stream-of-consciousness about what I hope to accomplish between now and the end of the year

  • A fully realized ‘pitch’ of what this game actually is
  • Mind Maps!
    • Mind Maps for the various features, themes, and emotions of the game
    • Mind Maps for the various loops of the game
    • Mind Maps, generally
  • A social media presence that’s not super embarrassing
  • A final name, and probably a URL to go with it
    • Also maybe look into rules and standards about names
  • Comment and cleanup existing code
  • Do some “fun coding”
  • Document coding procedures to better iterate over them
  • Write more posts. Write more everything
  • Focus on focus
    • BUT SERIOUSLY THIS TIME
  • Read as much as I can
    • Books on games
    • Books on game design
    • Books on life
    • Books generally
  • Cleanup and prepare
  • Hangup pictures and other decorations
  • Think real hard about scope
  • Do more pixel art
  • Learn how to do pixel art generally
  • And much, much more

Time to get to it.

PRE-SPRINT 10 – 33 DAYS – PLANNING

33 DAYS

Week of December 11th, 2016

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

2016-12-04-11_45_42-burn-chart-google-sheets

The state of our WARP CORP is strong. MEGA-MONTH is halfway over and boy are the results promising already!

The Extinction-Level-Event (ELE) continues to hold at 14 weeks away. Astonishing!

Our team of highly respected accountants are slacking off, but are ready for the call to action later in the week

The astute among you may have realized that despite the rather salient header image Christmas is, in fact, not 33 days away. So what is…?

We shall have to find out together!

Thank you.

SPRINT GOALS

This is likely to be the 3rd week of very little programming, though the hope is to begin to ramp up as the week goes on. As has become typical, lack of time and overall concentration has contributed to a very slow pace. This pace is expected to increase dramatically in, oh, 33 days or so.

Here’s this week’s TOP 3 P O W E R * G O A L S

  • What even is this game? Continued from last week, we’ll be focusing on what this game is and isn’t. I’ve also scoped in work on an actual, real-life, honest-to-goodness pitch that I can start to share people so they can make fun of me
  • Let’s read! a bunch of stuff. I have a huge amount of stuff to read that I’ve bought over the last few months and years. Books on game design, Lua programming, inspirational books, books on self-employment, and a whole lot more. So much, in fact, that it’s become necessary to create an entire POWER GOAL for it so I can begin to actually read the darn things
  • Improve your concentration with these ten easy steps. Well, maybe it’ll be more than 10 steps, but I really need to address this problem, so I’m making an entire goal for it. I must be better at concentrating and minimizing distractions…or I’ll be in some big trouble when I’m eventually on my own

Time to get to it.

PRE-SPRINT 9 – LET IT SNOW – PLANNING

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LET IT SNOW

Week of December 4th, 2016

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

2016-12-04-11_45_42-burn-chart-google-sheets

The state of our WARP CORP is strong. MEGA-MONTH has only recently dawned, yet we’ve already been able to put away a lot of cash into the WARP DOGS coffers. Our current extinction-level-event (ELE) is a record-breaking 14 weeks away. Incredible!

Our highly respected accountants are celebrating by taking the rest of the week off.

It’s likely to snow here at WARP DOGS HQ in beautiful, behind-the-Safeway, North Bend, Washington. As Founder, CEO, and Chief Meteorologist of WARP DOGS I have been asked to provide a comment on these situations. My response is thus:

LET IT SNOW.

Thank you.

SPRINT GOALS

The nice thing about sprints is that you can change your mind often. Last sprint was proof of this: I took a break from programming and pivoted to lore and world-building. A fun diversion, and I got a whole lot done.

This sprint is more of the same. One thing that my brainstorming sessions taught me was that I needed more constraints. Before I jump back into programming I plan to take an entire sprint – this sprint – to really narrow down the scope of what I’m working on. I enjoy editing and taking a knife to my own work, so this shouldn’t be too bad.

Here’s this week’s P O W E R * G O A L S

  • A logo and name and it’s all good, dog. This PG was from last sprint and continues through this one. It’s related to the company itself – naming, logo, that type of thing
  • What even is this game? Ah, a good question! Is it Animal Crossing meets Zelda, or Zelda meets Animal Crossing? Is it truly inspired by Undertale, or is that game so deeply rooted in my brain that essentially everything I make or think about is inspired by Undertale? Tricky quesitons to answer.
  • An unexplored world full of possibility. I enjoyed this brainstorming quite a bit and think I can provide even more details and context. I’m on a roll, so it’d be crazy to sto now

Time to get to it. The hope is to have some visuals to share before the end of this.

PRE-SPRINT 8 – DAWN OF MEGA-MONTH – PLANNING

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DAWN OF MEGA-MONTH

November 27th, 2017

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

2016-11-27-09_46_22-burn-chart-google-sheets

The state of our WARP CORP is strong, and also largely unchanged from last week. I’ve decided to change the “Estimated” line from black to dark gray.

I am unsure of the tax ramifications of such a change, but my team of highly respected accountants are on the task

Like many people, my dayjob pays out once every two weeks. The result is that most months you get two paychecks – except for the two months, each year, in which you get three.

I’m not going to pretend I have some inate skill in finances, but I know enough to realize this isn’t “bonus money” and I treat it like any other paycheck – into the budget and out of sight, out of mind

Except for this coming month…

Mega-Month.

Mega-Month is a truly remarkable month in which a bunch of unrelated financial windfalls somehow sync up. They include:

  • A 3 paycheck month
  • Birthday & Christmas
  • Potential Christmas bonus at work
  • Various otherwise small payout from PayPal, Chase, and – of all things – fantasy football

Wow! That’s a lot.

If all goes to plan, December will also be the last month we can earn money, so it couldn’t come at a better time

Sprint Goals

Last sprint had a few issues related to time – to be expected when I’m still working and there’s holidays to contend with

However, I really enjoyed focusing on more specific Power Goals, and this trend will continue. I want to focus largely on visual-related power goals this time around

  • An inn full of strange regulars. This work will encompass a few areas – new monsters, new “inn” tileset, music, tweaks to dialog, and an overall attempt to get a vertical slice of “feel”
  • The hero of this title has a cool style. I’ve been using open art for long enough – it’s time to create an actual protagonist!
  • An unexplored world full of possibility. This is my first stab at making maps for both the world and our main town.

Time to get to it. The hope is to have some visuals to share before the end of this.

PRE-SPRINT 7 – Happy Cranksgiving – Planning

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Happy Cranksgiving

November 20th, 2016

WARP DOGS’ CORP LOGS

2016-11-24-11_07_44-burn-chart-google-sheets

The state of our Warp Corp is strong. Since the last update I was able to stockpile another $1,000 or so. We’re still in the earning period, so no spending yet.

Sprint Goals

This sprint will have a fairly specific goal for once – dialogue, and everything surrounding it. I’ve decided to write my own dialogue library as well, which will be good practice!

  • A better dialogue system. Let’s display text in a cool way, that’s easy to add onto, where you can change colors and sizes easily, and more
  • Basic responses and choices. Nothing fancy, but you should be able to ‘respond’ to a question
  • Bonus flavor features. Text boxes that shake when scared, that try to fly away, that bounce around, that spin in circles

Dialogue is going to be a big part of this game, so it’s important to dedicate some time to it. Hope to have a good amount to share at the end