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Johnathon

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Everything posted by Johnathon

  1. Heya Guys, Just stopping in to let you know I'm still alive and the adventure is still being developed. I got a little caught up in the holiday break and missed my December 14th update. Things have been a bit crazy and busy (as the story so often goes.) Just nailed my first internship as a mobile app developer, so that'll serve to make things, additionally, busy; but hopefully it will also help to better hone my coding skills. That being said, I'm going to be taking 2d digital animation as one of my electives this coming term. You can guess what I intend to use that instruction for. Look forward to next update, in March. Johnathon
  2. that would be Scott and Mark's black sheep child (SQ2) for me. And, while I'll admit SQ5 was an acquired taste for me, I did learn to love it. P.S. I still love SQ2, but yeah, it's probably my least favorite.
  3. I'm a real sucker for Space Quest 3, but I love them all so much it almost doesn't matter (even sq2, Scott and Mark's black sheep child.)
  4. Alright, I finished beating the demo (the long way), and have skim read this thread, and would like to add a couple points I don't believe have been brought up (possibly they have). 1) Perhaps this is not intended to persist into the final game, but I notice that when Rooter activates the forklift and it begins rolling out of the way, Ace decides to go ahead and walk along-side it before it's even completely out of the little 'pocket' it had been nestled into (and he does so successfully), indicating that he could have fit through and been able to slide/walk along-side it without Rooter having turned in on in the first place. Other such occurrences exist elsewhere, such as when Ace walks through the lab door: he appears to actually walk through the side glass rather than the opening itself. This occurrence is less subtle, and I am fairly certain ya'll are already aware of it and intend to polish it up, but as for the case above with the forklift: although it's not as obviously a bug, to me it feels like quite a blooper, and detracts from the cleverness of the game. 2) I find it quite... "insensible?" that Ace needs to turn the vice-grip in order to visually see the last drill bit. The whole thing feels quite unnatural, as someone put it earlier in this thread in relation to sliding the toilet paper around to find the keycard - only I feel in this case more obviously unnatural (because I can more easily imagine Ace not wanting to make a mess of the janitor cart than I can see him being blinded to a drill bit until spinning a vice grip). Perhaps I'm just too much the analyzing type, but I imagine Ace's point of view would not really render him blind to the drill bit, and it would be more natural to just be able to slide it out of the way to look more "intentionally" at what may be behind it. In real life, were I searching through a closet, I would not position my head permanently behind a vice-grip at an exact angle and then start playing with it because I think there may be something behind it that I can see between the grips. Granted, regarding point 2 above, these kinds of quirks have always existed in adventure games. I just wanted to share my reaction to it. I feel it sort of detracts from the immediacy of the experience and reminds the player that he's/she's playing a precise puzzle/hotspot game, rather than working through an adventure. I'd like to reference Cliffy's toolbox in SQ5 now: it seemed to follow more naturally the protagonist's intentions, as Roger was able to simply shove aside anything he wasn't interested in as he continued his combing through of the toolbox for anything that might be useful. The fact that Ace seems incapable of observing and/or manipulating a view before him with greater... "omnipotency?" makes him seem stupid and restricted unnecessarily, and that because he wasn't bright enough to think about turning or leaning his head around the vice grip, or simply shoving the item over, he got bored and decided to spin the vice grip with the alan bit and then just happened to get lucky enough to notice a bit by looking between the grips (this is especially unnatural because... what was his motivation for spinning the vice grip open?) I also agree with the overall sentiment in this thread regarding the majority of the puzzles being simply object moving/sliding and hand swiping interactions. It's quite below the par of clever puzzles that have come before them in earlier space quest games, and I too hope that this is not the intended ratio of puzzle types (tablet-savvy finger swiping and object moving / clever intellectual designs) for the final product. All this having been said, the demo was quite enjoyable. I love the artistic style, atmosphere, and music. I'm really looking forward to further updates, especially tomorrow! :D
  5. Ahh... So there is quite more to it after all. It turns out, I selected to play as rooter and walked through the steam. Ace follows him without getting hurt by it. Then I opened the lab with the keycard, opened all specimen containers, and it was the end of the demo. I thought to myself, "that was pretty cool, but a bit short." I didn't have to move crates, stick rooter's head in a vent, or anything like that.
  6. Certainly, at this rate, it would take that long, Troels. Not to worry, however. :D And thanks! I'm glad to see you're still looking forward to it.
  7. Please take what I have to say below with a grain of salt, as it is only my immediate sense on the matter. Nonetheless, given that I probably don't have as much know-how or background information as some of you guys do on Trowe, given what I did witness him saying here on this board months ago, and what he's just posted now on the update, here is what I honestly think; clear-cut, and non-sugar-coated. I could be wrong on some points or even on all, but anyhow: If you ask me, Paul does believe in the project, and he does not believe that it is going to fail, and that is why he is behaving the way that he is. He is jealous of the Two Guys. He is jealous of the uniqueness and quality of the product they're producing, in comparison to his own resevoir of accomplishments at replay, and he is threatened by the idea of the project being finished and being successful. I also believe that some of the influence to his sour behavior roots back to some bad blood between him and Mr. Scott Murphy, and the possibility that Paul, in some twisted sense, feels that Scott owes him something, because, unfortunately, Mr. Trowe doesn't seem to possess a true understanding of the concept of "charity" towards a friend. He seems, for example, to hold the unfortunate misconception that charity by definition means to help someone who is desperately in need so that you can grow him/her as a plant later on, only to cash in for your "friendly deed," because that is the easiest and most personally beneficial application of the virtue. (See Paul's attitude here) And, I also believe that holding the position of CEO of a company implies it's own unique stresses. And I think, as others have mentioned already, that he is also jealous of Chris Pope. And... most notably... I believe that the more he continues, as he has been, the better he's going to make SpaceVenture look, and possibly the worse his own company. I take no pleasure in the irony of it for his company's detriment, but I must say, if it helps the Two Guys... ...not that they need it, Paul, not that they need it. Again, I could be wrong, but this is what I've taken away from what I've seen over the past year. You guys tell me if I'm making any careless judgements here.
  8. A very legitimate concern you have, pcj, as I myself have been aware I will need to find a way around these limitations. I have spent a little time already researching the posts of others at the AGS boards who wish to customize AGS (or find a loophole around it's limits in some regard), and I realize it's nothing to be taken lightly. However, I don't limit my ideas based upon current hardware or engine restrictions, and I will find a way to make this idea come to fruition. Of course, because it would be foolish to start implementing the entire game up until the max-limit of rooms and only then look to cross that bridge, I've been focusing mainly on perfecting implementation of the interface, production of the screenshots, and polishing of all elements of the adventure that don't include mass implementation. The major implementation I've had on my mind has been to complete the demo. I will either be learning how to customize AGS for my needs, or I will need to change to a different engine (though I'm hoping I can rectify the situation without needing to do so.) I'm still a bit of a beginner when it comes to coding. I just started a major in CompSCI only last Fall. Have C mastered pretty well, have been becoming more comfortable with C++. Haven't done very much big scale projects, or IDE development, cross-platform compiling, or other languages yet.
  9. September 14th, 2013 Space Questers, I am aware that I am 8 days late for the update to my previous update, (which was also late, and frankly, quite lame). Forgive the lapse, and no, this project has not disappeared. Things are just a little tight. Let's go over some new stuff and information I want to share with you first: How do you make a 2D-style adventure game seem more diverse, and spatially more enthralling, without making it 3D...? The question may seem similar to what Nintendo asked themselves before innovating from the style of the NES to the SNES. For example, they added layers for the characters to run behind - but this has no application to adventure games, where that has always been a feature. Some adventure games, such as "Last Half of Darkness," attempted to make the environment of the adventure seem more encaptivating by basing direction on a North/South East/West walking scheme, where the point-of-view between different rooms would change according to where the player desired to walk (this was of course from a first-person perspective, unlike the Sierra adventures (or at least most of them), and I want to emphasize that even this was in respect to differing rooms (and you'll understand soon why I make this distinction). Well, this innovation of mine is significantly different, and - if I may have your permission to get all giddied-up and excited just thinking about it as I explain it to you - also much more exciting. To my knowledge, it has never been developed to this extreme in an adventure game before, and as innovating as I'm telling you it is, it does not compromise the integrity of the richness and pureness of what it means to be a 2D-styled adventure game. All it does is take what we know of that and bring out the best of it. A couple of updates ago, I showed you an updated image of the GUI for "Roger Wilco and the Outer Edge of Earnon," hinting to you some significance of the add camera buttons (which replaced what had been a shortcut to the inventory window. Even longer ago, I mentioned to our Space Quest Historian, Troels Pleimert, of some very exciting new ideas I had up my sleeve, particularly one that had been inspired to me by playing "Gold Rush." I had also promised that you would be able to test drive this innovative adventuring experience in the demo I've been developing. I did not finish the demo this summer - being a newly-wed husband took away from that, and I have not had time to finish it this semester, as I'm working my way through a rigorous computer science program - but I can promise you that I have made great progress nonetheless, and that the project is still very important to me. I just don't want to show something as big as a complete demo to you if I know it's not ready, because I want that first impression to be a whopper! I can, however, go over some of the details, and show you some images to demonstrate. So here goes... Multiple camera angles for each screen means MAXIMUM exploration, and GREATER immersement into the 2D world!!! As a starting point to illustrate, I can tell you that the current design of this adventure involves between 119 to 134 rooms. I could also tell you that when many authors advertise how many rooms an adventure has, it has been clearly implied that the author is also talking about screenshots (except for cut sequences), and that "rooms" has been long considered very closely synonymous with "screenshots," but for the Outer Edge of Earnon, I must tell you this is not nearly the case. This game will have up to FOUR screenshots for every single room! YES, FOUR! Some rooms may have slightly less while others may even have one more than four, depending on the context of the room (it will be dictated by what's most appropriate to fall in line with the room and the plotline). But what do I mean by this, and why...? Well, let's first take a look at how this will... look... and I can elaborate from there. I wish to warn you beforehand, however, the screenshots I'm using in this example are far from complete, and the sprites I'm using for Roger are just stand-ins for illustration purposes. So, let's say that I'm currently in the room below, and Roger is facing towards me (towards the screen), let's say I wanted to choose to look onward in the direction that he is looking, without changing rooms. I would click the lower camera button, as shown in the screenshot... and this would result in the perspective changing to the screenshot below. Now, let's say that from my updated perspective, I want to see what is in the direction to the right of Roger, again without changing rooms. I would simply click the camera button to the right, as shown in the screenshot above (our last updated perspective), and the perspective would now change to the following screenshot. Finally, if from our current updated perspective, I wanted to see what was in the direction to the left of Roger (now our updated southward (or, more accurately, screen/monitor-ward), I would simply click the lower camera button yet again, which would result in the perspective changing to what is depicted in the screen below. The camera buttons will be smart objects which function in respect to which direction the perspective is currently facing, and clicking upward anytime (because the screen will always be facing "upward," if you know what I mean) will result in the perspective instantly changing to the direction that Roger, as a sprite, is facing. Thus, if I were to click the upmost camera button from the screen just above (our last updated position), we would end up where we began at the beginning of this demonstration. The benefits of this innovation...? One thing that had always bothered me when I was younger, while playing adventure games, was how some areas would seem to be blocked off, or how some screens seemed really repetitive. This new feature allows greater exploration, and will help even further to keep yours truly, as an artist, more honest with producing quality and unique screenshots, as having to consider them from a 3d perspective, while still keeping them at the same 2d adventure-style quality, will demand greater use of the imagination. You can also, no doubt, anticipate how much more immense and complex the gameplay experience in itself will be made simply due to the addition of this feature. For example, when the camera view changes, the positioning and orientation of Roger (as well as any other characters and objects in the screen) will need to be updated accordingly. In addition, when it comes to puzzle solving, there may be instances where the player will only advance by taking advantage of the full richness of exploration of every room, as, for example, the collectible Two Guys bucakazoid in the room above is only visible/attainable, from the perspective in the third of the screenshots (the second-to-last one just shown above). Well, my fellow fans, I hope this helps to hold you over as I continue to push forward. I wish I could give more details and goodies, but the time is not right. I'll show you a couple more screens I was more recently updating before I go yet again; but do keep in mind these are also not yet complete. Sincerely, Your Humble and Slow but Serious Fan Game Designer, Johnathon
  10. Alright, so... I gather some may be wondering as to why I'm bothering to post this, considering that we have DOSBox; but some of us perfer not to deal with minor glitches that come along with DOSBox, or may be severe hardcore retro gamers who want to play some of the games that DOSBox is not compatible with. Or, some of you just may be serious 486 nerds like myself, so... I thought I'd point you to a rare find: You can buy Baby AT 486 motherboard (the ESA TF-486) from this website, newly designed by ESA to industrial standards, for $200.00. It has very nice expansion ability, the rare ability to use PS/2 keyboard and mouse with a 486, from the looks of it it meets all the standards necessary to easily build a custom SQ PC refering to Frans' article, and this board will probably last you forever. Retro Motherboards are literally the most difficult component to find at a good price and working condition these days (oftetimes getting ripped by bad sellers on eBay because they're availability has gone down and their price up.) ESA would normally require a higher fee, as far as I know, to have them build you a new 486 motherboard, by calling them and getting a quote, but it seems they have produced extra of these for a particular client who didn't need them all, and so now the extras are being sold at this website. Peripherals to go with a system based on this board could also easily be purchased from this other site. Memory, I recommend getting from S.A.Tech, as I've used them several times already. And... here would be the manual for the motherboard. Happy Building, for those of you geeks like me! :D
  11. AWESOME video! Oh, I would love so much for you to elaborate on this, Frede. Is this why VSB was successfully released with no legal trouble? Tell about the pissing on Activision, do, Frede! :D
  12. Talk about a disappointment! I remember myself continuing to think it was simply behind schedule, for the first intitial year or two, and when I finally realized it wasn't going to happen, disappointment made a permanent settling in. Sucked it did. Made a developer wannabe out of me. Well, at least a more obsessive one than I had been prior to that betrayal.
  13. Lol, pcj, what are you doing with this in your possession? :P
  14. Happy Birthday, Frans!!! I feel like we attended grade school together! :D
  15. And now that you bring this up, I just thought I'd add: I think I recall Scott and Mark mentioning (or someone else saying they mentioned, during an interview, not necessarily recently, but years ago), that it was because of the "current" (of that time) goings on that Space Quest 4 resulted as such a dark game. However, Space Quest 4 is a jewel of its own species (still worthy of being part of the series, in every respect, I think; yet so unique in its apocalyptic undertone), and I do believe such is one of the most invaluable qualities of a great author and storyteller; that is, to be able to utilize his/her current state of mind, whether on the up or down, to inspire his/her work in a way which brings it to life in an honest and convincing way. I realize we're discussing a comedic series here, but I think the concept still applies. In any form of creative expression, an author's desire must be into it if it's going to be worth expressing to others - and that means if the work needs to ring a little close to home for the author, or to a degree serve as a means of therapeutic outlet, then, all the better - so long as it is balanced and doesn't completely overtake the work. Perhaps I'm projecting too much my own strategy and values here. I'm not certain exactly how Scott and Mark have felt throughout the years; but every work is an expression and revelation of its creator(s), that is unavoidable. Just try and tell me for a moment, even looking at Space Quest 3, that the whole bit about the Software Pirates ruining the series, and the cubicles with the overworked programmers being whipped wasn't a form of comedic outlet, or displacement therapy. And, if you ask anyone, they'll probably tell you they found it funny as hell when they played it. From what I've read here, I have no doubts that Scott and Mark have every ability they need to make SQ7, and if they decided to (even and despite whatever feelings from the present or past that reside) it would still be awesome. It's simply a matter of whether or not they desire enough to do it.
  16. I suppose you're right, Cap'n. I just really wanted it to be the golden mop. :blush:
  17. Thank you sir. Here is another update: February 22nd, 2013 Space-faring comrades! This is a surprise update: I just feel in the mood to release some stuff, so I'm just gonna throw a few, small things at ya to hold ya over until further progress this summer! First: A couple images of the improved GUI. Notice that the inventory window that had been in the bottom-right corner has been replaced by a new feature. This feature will control one of the most integral revolutionary adventure gameplay/style improvements that the Outer Edge of Earnon will sport. You'll be able to take it for a test drive once the playable portion of the demo is released! ACTIVE GUI: INACTIVE GUI: Second: Here's a little snapshot of an area of the 3D set of Monolith Burger I've been tying up. Recall, this adventure will remain faithful to classic 2D-style adventure gaming; though, 3D design will aid as reference for creation of more impressive and... "informed" backgrounds. Third (and last, for now): I am releasing the first 2.5 minutes of the unfinished introduction portion of the demo. I will continue chugging away at this (and the game as a whole, of course), but I hope this will tickle your funny SQ spot. See the demo page.
  18. uh... not to nitpick, Cap'n, but... how do we know the limited palette is trying to approximate wood? Couldn't it just as well be trying to approximate gold? After all, up to this point we've been only theorizing as to the author's intent. I know, I'm nitpicking. Lol. I mean... after all... even the stringy... uh... squiggly string cloths.... uh... what would you call the cleaning part of the mop -> the parts attached to the handle: they are also gold, er... yellow, or wood, or whatever. :D So, maybe it is the Golden Mop?
  19. I would agree, and also add: given that an ACME rocket reference was also present in SQ3, just one screen below the pod, the train-of-thought of the author during the time of design is quite prevalent in this case.
  20. Thanks for the edit. I forgot to edit out the email address. As for the domain name, I figured it may be out of "limbo" by now, but do you suppose it's still worth trying to pick up? Has most of the damage already been done?
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