It has been many months since my last entry here. I’m going to try to do a better job of being more consistent … maybe.  Well since then, “The Seed” interactive fiction experiment took a lot longer than I expected, and it’s still not done. I hope to return to it and finish what I started. I may work on it in parallel with some of my other projects. My main project right now is a Google Daydream VR app in which you operate a gun turret to shoot and mine asteroids, protect your base (which is located on an asteroid) from rogue factions. I have a very rough prototype working and hope to have something more to show in the next few months.

I think the timing for releasing a Daydream app is critical since the market is currently tiny compared to the current glut of mobile games. I considered (and still am) obtaining an HTC Vive, but at this time I think it is a bit too niche. Plus I wanted to get my feet wet with something that I feel might have a wider audience. We’ll see.

I saw a video of an excellent talk at GDC recently that caused me to detour briefly from the VR stuff to revisit one of my older games. I just finished a revamp of PixiCubes done specifically for Christmas. I’ve never tried releasing a holiday-specific game before so I’m interested to see if it goes anywhere. Of course, there is that giant hurdle that all indie games have to overcome, discoverability. I still haven’t figured that one out. If you’re interested in some Christmas picture puzzles, check out PixiCubes: Christmas Edition.

It’s currently available for PC,Mac, Android, and hopefully soon, iOS. I just submitted it to Apple for approval yesterday so we’ll see.

Inkle Studios, the company behind Sorcery I-III and Around the world in 80 days recently released Ink, their scripting language for writing interactive narrative stories. That got me thinking about how much fun I had writing for my Ludum Dare 28 game The Seed.  My goal now is to expand that small game into a much larger interactive fiction piece using the Ink language. I have been working on this for the last couple of weeks, but with kids getting out of school, and other commitments, it has been difficult to find the time to write about it much less work on it.  With that in mind, this project will carry over into the middle of June and might require an additional two or three months realistically.  I’ve never attempted anything like this before, but I can see lots of places where this story could go. I’m not sure how much I’m going to be able to get done with multiple kids home from school, but I’ll just have to steal what time I can and see how things progress.

I have yet to announce my project for May, and it might be a couple more days before I do so. For the past couple of weeks of April I’ve been working on a redesign of my joystick to keyboard utility called Joysticker. The new version is called Joysticker Pro and it features Lua-based scripting like the original, but it has an additional database that maps joystick controls to an XBox360 configuration with A,B,X,Y, trigger, shoulder, and stick buttons. This allows control scripts to work with any joystick.  Below is a screenshot of the current state of the UI. I have several ideas for this and depending on its reception, I’ll be adding more features to it.

Joysticker Pro