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Socoder -> On Topic    

Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 03:41

Stuck in a Rut

I feel like I'm kinda stuck in terms of flexibility lately.

AGameAWeek seems to be 100% done in JSE, lately, and as great as it is that I can do that, I'm kinda lacking in terms of a target audience.
Before, I had SmileBASIC users to keep entertained, and before that was OUYA. Nowadays I'm pretty much just targeting the 2 or 3 people who bother to visit AGameAWeek, and my lack of fresh ideas is becoming alarmingly obvious to all who are paying attention.

Meanwhile, the ALChoons seem to be taking longer and longer to do each week, with lyrics and music videos taking up about 90% of that time. Sure would be nice to go back to just doing silly bits of music and not worrying about the rest.

And then there's the fact that JSE doesn't "do" mp3's, so all that music I'm making isn't really going anywhere at all, and is just getting dumped over at AGameAWeek and YouTube, where it hits record heights of 20 or so views if I'm lucky.


The other day, a little thing went round my head, going "Why don't you try making games for old systems, like how Cyangames does?", and I actually bothered to install a thing called SecondBasic Studio which lets you target the Megadrive. (After trying and failing multiple times to get TurboRascal running on a Mac!!)

I gave it a quick shot, and got a very obvious sprite moving around on the screen, before going "... and what's the point of this?"

Is the point "eventually I might be able to sell one of these!!"? Because if that's the point, then the fact is that I'd actually have to hold the game back from being my regular AGameAWeek Freeware stuff, and that kinda seems unfair, especially to the 6 Patreon subscribers.
Is the point "A new place to throw AGameAWeek onto!!"? Because if that's the point, then all the games are freeware, and I'll never be able to sell them on a cart in future.

Honestly, I'm kinda in a weird limbo place, right now.
I'm not sure where to go, or what to do, or how to do it.

I keep saying "Oh, just keep doing AGameAWeek..." but it's been over 15 years since I started that.. Maybe it's time for a change..?

''Load, Next List!''
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 04:09
I reckon you'd proper get into some more longform content, making a game in a week isn't that much time so you're limited to what you can do in terms of scope. Maybe put a poll out on your patreon to see if people would like to see some more longofrm content,even if that's a transition to agameamonth for a while, just to see how both yourself and your subscribers find that.

I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with the results and opportunities to create something a bit beefier.

So long as you let your patreons know and that they're okay with that then I don't reckon there's any problems.

Web / Game Dev, occasionally finishes off coding games also!
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 05:34
Yeah agameamonth or start small agameafortnight, it’ll definitely expand the games you can create.

But at the end of the day, you need to enjoy it.
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 07:02
To be completely honest, an awful lot of my limiting factors right now are simply down to not being able to guarantee a save file..

Like, it sure would be nice to have a nice sprawling menu-driven "Stars to unlock the next level" style progression in a few of my games, but if the browser clears the cache out after a week of playing, the player's going to be mighty peeved about it.

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Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 07:07
Would it be worth using a different language in that case? Either that or doing something cool with cookies and mysql to hold the related session data perhaps?

Even if it's a generic format it could work well, e.g.

ID (autoincrement)
unique / session ID

Web / Game Dev, occasionally finishes off coding games also!
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 09:03
Yeah, a different language seems the best way to do that, but then we're back to "how much longer are the OS venders going to let people download games willy nilly" issue again. That was kinda why I switched to Browser coding in the first place.
Retro coding really does seem to be the better option, if I want to do this.

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Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 09:10
At least then you know it'll run on the system(s) you target, aand you can get games published onto actual, physical cartridges!!!!

Web / Game Dev, occasionally finishes off coding games also!
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 09:11
ChatGPT is pretty good as a homework assistant. In Poe there are custom teaching bots.

Why not spent some time studying how to get products out there in the public attention? Maybe explore area's that could use more leveling?

These bots can get really deep into area's as complex as neural marketing and what not.

If you get real knowledgeable, you might even be asked to help others in the new skill area's?

Edit: my last discovery was. I need to study how to create meaningful connections with potential customers. Like being a sort of Manchester City. And gaining and keeping supporters that buy the tickets and spread the word.
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 09:56
Yeah, roll on the days when I can upload a MyGame.zip file to a chatbot and say "Spam the hell out of the internet for me!!"

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Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 11:12
I did notice from being consistent with releasing content for my blogs. And some times mentioning it elsewhere. Did let the visitor count slowly grow.

With github too and soundcloud and youtube too. When I keep adding content often. There is growth and people start popping in for a talk.

Tis my current bad health that I can not keep it up or spent enough time increasing the quality and engaging.
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 14:34
Creating for a retro platform is a lot of fun, especially if it is one you fondly remember, from my perspective at least. It is possible to give something out for free and also to sell of a cartridge or other media.

BTW, another option for TRSE is to compile from source with QT, it's what I do.

Andy H
8-bit games at www.hewco.uk
Cartoons at awful.ovine.net
Ovine at ovine.net
Tue, 09 Apr 2024, 19:01
The stumbling block for TRSE wasn't actually TRSE itself. I have that on here, runs just fine.
It was TRSE's need to have an Amstrad emulator that allows for injection, and Caprice being a bit screwed up on Mac right now.
I think the better option would be using my virtual Windows and doing it in there.

Tonight I made myself a little spreadsheet and listed pros/cons for each viable target.

The two targets that are sticking out to me are SmileBASIC and OUYA (and/or Android TV, or those little handheld consoles)
Both of which allow for my games to exist, loading and saving to function in a more permanent manner, and the OUYA target even allows for mp3 based music, too.

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Wed, 10 Apr 2024, 18:50
2am the next morning, and I'm still thinking about that spreadsheet above.
Something's been whizzing around in my head all day. A mix of thoughts, and possibilities.
About how I have a "standardised" code style, which might not be to everyone's tastes, but if you could read the code I've written in Blitz and Max and Monkey and C++, you can kinda see a very standardised code style. All my code is kinda similar, no matter what the target language.

And that's expanded over to JSE, too.

And I'm thinking about how Monkey worked.. Monkey didn't compile.. Monkey "Transpiled" the code.. Taking the Monkey code and converting it into other languages so that it could then be compiled for the target.

And then looking at JSE.
And then looking back at Monkey.
And then thinking about how I have a ready to go C++ framework from a few years ago that worked pretty damn well, but that I ultimately gave up on when I started making Javascript things, instead..
And then looking at Monkey.
And BlitzMax..

And then looking at JSE..

And thinking..
And wondering...

I think I might've given myself an unintended goal for this year.
And it sounds like it might be kinda tricky, and really quite difficult, but ultimately could prove incredibly useful.


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Fri, 12 Apr 2024, 13:49
Have you thought about perhaps learning and making apps for PicoTron? It's kinda a greenfield and might offer the kind of challenge you are looking for https://www.lexaloffle.com/picotron.php