Posts

Showing posts from May, 2011

Flash Game Development by Example – Book Review

Tech publishers Packt have sent me a copy of Flash Game Development by Example by Emanuele Feronato, to review. Packt seem like a really awesome publisher – I love the short, punchy format of their books and their twitter account @PacktExplorer is single-handedly bringing the tech publishing industry into the social media age (honestly, they’re definitely worth following). I’m currently also working my way through their book Away 3.6 Essentials by Matthew Casperson, which is excellent and will be getting a full review on this blog shortly. For reasons that will become apparent however, I was able to get this review of Emanuele’s book out a bit more quickly... Unfortunately, this isn’t really a book that I can recommend. Emanuele Feronato is a legend in the Flash blogging scene, tirelessly giving away tutorial after tutorial, covering everything from Box2D to Flashpunk. These tutorials are great for beginners who don’t know where to start with a new technique or library, or are

Takeaways from GameCamp 4

Image
GameCamp4 was definitely the most fun I've had at a conference in a long time. The fact that it was held on a weekend, that people were there for love and not work, the democratic unconference format, the fact that there was a nice mix of male and female attendees - it all added up to a very pleasant day out. There were no dark auditoriums, no videos or keynotes - just lively debate, Nerf guns, zombies, rubber swords, obscure board games and lots of chat about videogames. Here are my takeaways (the ones that I can remember) from the sessions I went to: The Distillation of Gameplay A lively debate that ended up filling two sessions, yet somehow I remember very little of what we discussed. Limbo is a brilliantly distilled game as it dispenses with many of the trappings of games, such as a HUD/GUI, stats, scores, lives etc. Farmville and World of Warcraft both essentially rely on the same hooks of progression, leveling up and loot drops, rather than "gameplay" to keep play

Go play Owl Spin right now!

Image
Good news! Owl Spin is live on Kongregate . Go play it at your leisure. As always, voting things 5 stars makes me happy. Even though it's just a silly casual game, it was a monumental game for me because it's the one that made me decide to cut down on the client work and go full time indie. Can't wait to see how it does...

Advice for conference speakers

I was recently asked for some advice by someone starting out at conference speaking. I'm no expert, but I've had a bit of a crash-course in this over the last couple of years, so here's my advice: Make sure you have your session timed-out to last exactly 1 hour, with an additional 15 minutes of bonus content in case nerves make you burn through your slides too fast (as I did!). Similarly, make sure that you've covered all your main points by 45 minutes in, in case you run out of time. Have your slides on your laptop, on a USB stick and on dropbox / gmail / somewhere on the internet. Plan for complete technical malfunction! Test your your presentation / content on multiple computers just in case. If possible, find out what the resolution of the projector is before designing your presentation. If not, assume 800x600. People expect a humorous session with plenty of jokes (you can try to tailor these to the content/audience of your talk, so, at FOTB, jokes at the expense of