29 October 2014

What Is Epilepsy Mode?

I have made numerous mentions of an Epilepsy Mode within Project Plasma but people don't quite know what it is.

Epilepsy Mode is a feature in Project Plasma that reduces the flashing of certain animations (such as bullets) to make the game easier to play for people who are prone to seizures (such as people with epilepsy.) A lot of bullets have rather quick flashing animations within their sprites or just generally move fast which can make the game uncomfortable to play for people who suffer from seizures. An example of where this becomes a big problem is on the level 15 boss fight against Davagon.
Those purple bullets flicker slightly (hence why some of the bullets there are a slightly darker shade of purple than others) which isn't noticeable if there aren't that many of them on screen, but in cases like the above where every bullet that is being fired from the boss is like that then it becomes very noticeable and that's when people start getting uncomfortable during gameplay.

Other cases where epilepsy can become a problem include some swarms on some levels, the boss fight with Crystalline, and some parts of the boss fight with Dynast. However the boss fight with Davagon is probably the worst when it comes to this.

28 October 2014

Project Plasma Halloween Sale 2014

The Project Plasma Halloween begins in around 45 minutes from me typing this! 25% off the open beta price! (So £0.75)

As usual you can buy PP here: http://archangelatom.itch.io/project-plasma

Have fun!

UPDATE: Wow as soon as I announced the sale on Twitter with this tweet...

My Twitter just exploded with retweets, favourites, and several more followers... literally within seconds! Huge thanks going out to you guys I really appreciate the support!

23 October 2014

Urgent Fix for Project Plasma (v0.9.2 Live)

I have recently discovered that I need to fix something on Project Plasma. This fix is regarding a font change. "Now what's so urgent about that?" Well I'll tell you.

Project Plasma makes heavy use of two fonts - OCR A Extended (seen a lot on the HUD) which as many people are well aware of is a default font that comes with Windows. The second font is a font called Skirmisher which is made by a font developer called Iconian Fonts. The Skirmisher font can be used freely for non-commerical uses but it is donationware for commerical use. In other words, you can only use the font for commercial purposes if you donate a sum of money to the developer. This is what I did in order to get permission to use the Skirmisher font for Project Plasma.

However, before Skirmisher was used I used a font called Vyper, also by Iconian Fonts. I originally planned to use Vyper for Project Plasma instead of Skirmisher. Back when I made this choice I was unaware that the fonts were so I happily used Vyper for everything and later on I started using Skirmisher. When I found out that certain fonts have licenses I realised I screwed up by not checking what license each font I used had.

Since I didn't want to spend too much money on this game., I had to choose between Vyper and Skirmisher, I chose Skirmisher. I changed all the fonts from Vyper to Skirmisher (which meant I had to redesign a couple of graphics as well) and donated $20.00 to Iconian Fonts (about £12.30 at the time) to use the font commerically. I emailed Iconian telling them that I made a donation to use the font for the game and they replied with what was essentially the "go ahead" signal to use it. Project Plasma v0.9 was put on sale almost immediately after.

Unfortunately I just realised that I forgot to change the font from Vyper to Skirmisher in the highscore list at the end of the game. So that's pretty what this update will be about, changing the font from Vyper to something else on the scoreboard. I know it's a very minor update but it's certainly necessary - as an indie developer I really don't think it'll go down too well if someone has to take legal action against me, especially if they've only just recently released their first game!

PP v0.9.2 will be worked on immediately but probably won't hit itch.io by tomorrow afternoon due to my college hours.

Also, I strongly suggest anyone looking for some good fonts checks out Iconian Fonts. The guy who makes the fonts has a huge selection available. You check the selection out for yourself by following this link below:

Update: Project Plasma v0.9.2 is now live. Get it here.

21 October 2014

Project Plasma v0.9.1 Is Now Live!

Yes it's true, god knows how long after I announced I was postponing it's about to hit itch.io! PP v0.9.1 isn't a very big update - it doesn't really do much, although it will make it easier for rookie players in the early levels.

Here is the full list of what has been done.

  • Asteroids are now packed less densely on level 1. (Less asteroids basically, spread further apart. Yes I'm aware there a variety of off-colour jokes that can said to that...)
  • Grey asteroids now do 60% health damage to the player. (down from 70%)
    • Blue asteroids in the later levels still do 70% collision damage.
  • Grey asteroid kill rewards increased.
    • 40 points, up from 30
    • 120 cash, up from 100
  • The level 25 boss has been renamed from "Archangel" to "Dynast."
    • This is because I have big plans for a future game and I want to save the name "Archangel" for that. Don't expect it any time soon though.
The ZIP file has been compressed and I'm just about to upload it to itch.io. It will be is now available to download at the usual location which I've provided a link to below.


13 October 2014

The Rabid 45 (Stricken-out Rant)

10th August 2015 Update: Well as you can see I've literally gone put a massive strikeout throughout this entire blog post. This is because a lot of what was said in here I actually take back (although there are still a couple of points which I still stand firmly by.) After the 2015 General Election and Budget 2015 (among other occurances of David Cameron's cuntery) I understand completely why the event mentioned in here took place and I even support the cause they were fighting for, just like I support the #TakeUsWithYouScotland campaign a couple months back. I'll likely be releasing an entire blog post relating to this within the upcoming weeks. This blog post is left pretty much intact (except for the obvious strikeout) for archive purposes.

13th October 2015 Update: I urge everyone who's reading this rant to read this first. As mentioned before, there are many aspects of this rant that I've U-turned on and that post served as a counter-weight of sorts to this one. This rant shall remain up (and stricken-out) so people can refer to this should they need to.

Oh boy, we're now on post number 6 and so far three of those posts have been rants. Not exactly a good track record but holy hell I really need to get this off my chest.

On 18th September, Scotland held a referendum that granted a vote on whether it should become an independent nation or not. The result was approximately 45% yes to 55% no, the No vote won and Scotland remained in the UK. This sadly provoked a HUGE backlash from the Yes voters who are still campaigning for independence despite the referendum ending over three weeks ago. If you've been following my Twitter you can see I've just about hit the end of my tether with these sore losers.

My point? JUST STOP

Honestly? I can understand you guys being pissed for a few days but this going on for weeks now, honestly accept the result of the referendum and move the fuck on. By protesting and starting these mass revolts, you're just showing yourselves up to be ridiculously immature. It won't solve anything.

The most recent revolt was started by a man called Tommy Sheridan, a disgraced politican who has been denounced by many mainstream Yes campaigners, this guy staged a rally in a vain attempt to get more people to his side. I'm going to take a few things from the "Despair in the Square" post I saw on another blog - it's not a "rally," it's merely a shit-ton of despair made more vocal. Now there have been successful rallies, rallies that really encouraged people, rallies to fight against something that was truly bad or negative (for lack of a better word.) This rally would not fall under any of those.

This rally is just... pathetic if I'm completely honest.

Also, there seems be some vague evidence showing that ol' Tommy Sheridan is merely pocketing any money he gains from this for himself while giving as-little-as-possible back in return. Great work Sheridan, gather a load of hopeful Yes-campaigners and use them as your personal mini-banks/ATMs. You absolutely sicken me.

If you don't believe on that last point I just brought up I suggest you give this article a read. You'll find some pretty enlightening, and shameful, information in there... I wonder why Sheridan has declined to comment on this...

Now here's the part where I bring up arguments put forward by the 45ers and smash them in one fell swoop each.

Let's bring on the first contestant!
Most of the people voted for independence and who those who didn't voted out of fear/uncertainty/doubt/were brainwashed.etc.
Uhh no... 55 is bigger than 45. Most of the people voted against independence. I believe the phrase "silent majority" applies here - there were more No voters, however if you didn't look at the outcome at the end you wouldn't think that as the Yes voters were merely more vocal and all of these pathetic rallies prove my point.

Don't count the thugs that started terrorizing Glasgow on the night of the referendum, they were not part any No campaign, they were just chavs and thugs who have been denounced by various No campaigns such as Better Together, but even if you did count them in, they just did it for a single night. The rabid 45ers have been sore over this for weeks on end. Oh and no I'm not condoning what those thugs did, the terror they struck into the people of Glasgow is absolutely inexcusable.

As for people voting out of fear/doubt and so on, that may very well, and most likely in some cases to be true. An independent Scotland would, for a time at least, suffer direly in many areas. Whether it would recover or not, I don't know and I never will for a couple of decades at least but I think it's unfair to say they were all like that. Some people do believe or not do their research.

Next please...
Scotland will/should declare a UDI
Out of all the things I've read, this has to be the fucking worst and most poorly thought out thing ever. Do you guys know what would happen if Scotland did this? It didn't work out too well for Zimbabwe did it?

If Scotland declared UDI rather than having a civilized referendum, they would be practically driven into becoming a third-world country. When a country declares UDI from a nation (in this case the UK,) the parent nation gets all of their assets. Scotland has a lot of oil right? Well not anymore as that would go to the UK. Their military? Another gift to the UK with love from a now independent-but-struggling Scotland.

A UDI is basically declaring independence by brute force and it would be catastrophic for Scotland if it happened. Not to mention it would take decades before Scotland would be recognised as an independent nation should they take this route.

I'm gonna go ahead and take on one last argument the 45ers keep proposing...
Fuck it, I'm gonna use this last bit to speak out against all of these childish rallies as a whole rather than just keeping on nitpicking at individual arguments. Broader strokes paint the fence faster after all.

Let's face it here, you guys lost graciously, fair, and square. Unlike historic clashes where the Scots wanted independence from the Brits, it was resolved in a civil manner (well civil until now) without any bloodshed what-so-ever. Alex Salmond, the guy who proposed the referendum in the first place took his defeat like a man. He accepted that it was 55% vote against him without any qualms or tantrums - this level of maturity and nobility earns my respect.

I feel that this should be celebrated to some extent, you guys should be grateful that no lives were taken and no blood was shed in this unlike past battles for independence. All of this could have been a lot worse and yet it's bullshit like this that's escalating the whole scenario to an event reminiscent of those told in history books - after the whole thing was supposed to have been resolved!

Just grow up, you lost, suck it up. Maybe there'll be a second independence referendum in the future, if that happens, then you can have your say once again. All of these rallies won't do shit, I'll reiterate - they just show you up to be extremely immature. Will Cameron deliver his promises to Scotland and give them more power? Well we'll see, this could very well be the wake-up call he needed to get his act together - only time will tell I guess.

Now can we please just get along and focus on destroying a much bigger threat to our nation (and other nations?)

5 October 2014

Indiegogo Misuse (Rant)

Indiegogo, a crowdfunding site similar to Kickstarter where you pitch a project you want to proceed with and try and get funding for it in order to make it happen. At least, that's what it was originally intended for...

I went through Indiegogo the other day to see if there was anything worth checking out, particularly in the gaming section of the site. I saw some pretty worthwhile projects, unfortunately I also a lot of BS like this...

Oh and my personal "favourite..."
Scrounging at its lowest form right here people.
Seriously guys...

Indiegogo is a site for getting funding for projects, NOT for funding your PS4/Xbox One/new gaming PC.etc. (Protip: If you want to see more like that, just search up any console name on Indiegogo.)

That last one is just classic "my sister is sick so I need a PS4." Okay so you're sister is sick, yes that sucks, but why do you need a PS4 for her? Is there really nothing else for her to do? If the answer is no when get your own money and buy your own PS4. A lot of these people aren't offering any incentives for people who fund these mouth-breathers either, luckily the majority of them aren't buying into their sob stories (or in the case of the fourth guy, not buying into a load of cussing on the funding page.)

Unfortunately, some people are funding these guys. This is exactly the kind of crap that needs to discouraged and flushed out of crowdfunding sites such as Indiegogo, and this shit can be discouraged by simply not funding these muppets. Sad thing is, one person actually managed to get their console through media like this? Why you ask? Because she was a girl gamer...

Now I'm not being misogynist, but I believe that women should be treated exactly the same as men, and that doesn't mean giving them extra advantages just for being a woman, and no it certainly doesn't mean treating them like they're below men either. It means giving them the exact same status men have. If you wouldn't fund one gender who pulls this crap, don't fund someone of the other gender who pulls the same crap.

This pisses me off so much because so many legit projects that do deserve a level or merit end up getting pushed down and forgotten about as these layabouts beg for money only for them to not give anything back in return.

Not got any money for a PS4? Well, I have a solution for that! And no it's not post more sob stories on crowdfunding sites. It's a great solution that benefits society as a whole and you get your console. And the grand solution is...


Indiegogo is a great site, but it's sad to see it constantly get abused on a regular basis by people who seem to think they can work their way through society by mooching off of others and grovelling for cash. These are the guys who'll probably end up sitting on the streets begging for spare change when they finally move out.

That reminds me, I need a new graphics card and CPU for this computer. Got any change to spare, anyone?

4 October 2014

Project Plasma v0.9.1 Postponed

Yesterday, I posted a tweet on my Twitter notifying everyone that Project Plasma v0.9.1 will be released this weekend. (While making a playful jab at Microsoft and their upcoming Windows 10 OS in the process)

Well, this might not be going ahead as planned.

For reasons I do not wish to disclose right now PP v0.9.1 might not make it out this weekend (I'm saying it might not, not that it definitely won't.) The trailer on the other hand will be made tomorrow and should appear on Saturday on Sunday if not tomorrow.

PP v0.9.1 will most likely be pushed back to next weekend.