Showing posts from November, 2009

8 things that annoy me about ActionScript3

TextField .text can't be set to a number or object, only a String (unlike trace() for example, which will toString () anything you throw at it). There is no logical reason for this that I can see, and makes for some ugly code with String() casts everywhere. You can't really get around it by extending TextField either, if you want a designer to be able to manually move the textfield on the stage in Flash, which I always do. You can't tell if a key is down. I don't agree that this is a security threat, and it's a pain when you're doing games. No access to stage before addedToStage . I can't really see the reason why this is the case, and it can make code a lot more verbose, as you can't use stage in your constructors, leading to an extra layer of listeners and complexity. And it's worse if you're not actually extending DisplayObject . In my view, stage is a natural Singleton, and generally I treat it as such nowadays by keeping a static reference

Using Git and Github on Windows

Github is all the rage for source control / hosting OpenSource projects right now - which is a great thing, because for end-users who just want to grab a .zip file of the code or report an issue, it's really easy to use. If you want to check your code in to Git though, and you're on Windows, it can be hard to know where to start. I just went through the process of setting it up, so I thought others might find this useful. Here's the steps I took: Download and install "msysgit" from (from "featured downloads" on the right of the screen). This provides the core command-line Git functionality. To make life easier, download and install Tortoise Git from which is just like Tortoise SVN, which I use for SVN, and works great. It's completely visual and feels like native part of Windows. Download and install Putty and PuttyGen (I selected the installer for the full suite because I'

Game Review: Bloodwych (Amiga, Atari ST)

Like most things, RPGs were better in the 1980s. Take Bloodwych; I re-read the review of this game in ST Format about a hundred times because I didn't believe anything could be so brilliant. I bought it "mail-order": this meant that for no good reason it took 28 days to turn up, and you couldn't even complain about it on Twitter because it hadn't been invented. Two people could play it at once, which was revolutionary at the time, and stopped my brother just punching me until I gave him the joystick. 2-player RPGs are brilliant (my wife and I had a blast playing through Balder's Gate Dark Alliance - certainly more fun than watching me ride my horse around Oblivion for hours at a time). This is the bit where you choose your characters. My brother, of course, took the cool looking knight guy, the cool hooded wizard guy, the hot blonde chick and the cool looking ninja guy. That left me with a blue hermaphrodite thing, Sinbad, a smurf and a f***ing lizard. I did

Game Developers Radio podcast - Flash game design special (with me!)

I was recently on a special 2 hour edition of The Game Developers Radio podcast with host Joseph Burchett , Ryan Henson Creighton of Untold Entertainment , Daniel Cook of Lost Garden and indie developer Edmund McMillen . It was a great laugh to record and has some great pointers about making Flash games too - I learnt a lot recording it, hope you get just as much from listening, so listen here .

Video of my talk from Flash On The Beach

As I blogged previously , I gave a 3 minute "elevator pitch" at Flash on The Beach this year. I've already posted my notes and slides , and now for your viewing pleasure, here is the video: FOTB09 - Elevator Pitch - Iain Lobb from John Davey on Vimeo . You can see more elevator pitches and some other great talks by the likes of Grant Skinner and Mario Klingemann at: