Archive for May, 2006
[Editor's Note: Apologies for not getting this up sooner. Johnny had it ready a few weeks ago, but as you all probably know, I was busy moving. Anyway, here it is.]
(This'll be a short read.)
I hope you've all saved your coupons. After an epic battle with the foul beast known as Procrastination, I've completed WPfADs: The Game, my first stab at the text adventure genre. To the best of my play-testing knowledge, it's bug-free and entirely playable. And because I like you, I'll give the link to download it right at the top of this article:
From my experience writing the game, I've learned a few things. First of all, Weekend Projects for Armchair Developers is an agonizingly clunky name. It's really just something I made up for the first article because I thought it sounded funny. Although it could be worse — my first idea was "Programming for Fun and Non-Profit." Let's just make a mutual agreement right now to call the thing by its slightly less ridiculous acronym, "WPfADs."
Secondly, Inform is a great programming language, and one that I've barely scratched the surface of with the game and Part I of this writing. With considerable time and effort (and patience), you can create a truly epic, sprawling work, with plenty of polish. My game isn't that expansive, as I wanted to complete within a reasonable deadline (say, within the year), but I'm now itching to learn some of the finer points of the language and make something more ambitious.
The thing that makes Inform such a good programming language is that it's actually quite cathartic at times. It has a leisurely learning curve, and games-without-reasonable-deadlines can be built up at your own pace. Also, did I mention that it's very easy to learn? I'd encourage anybody reading this to try their hand at their own text adventure, and let me know how it turns out.
Speaking of comments, as always I'm putting the requisite "I'd love to hear some feedback" line at the end. If you find any bugs with the game (I'm sure there's probably one or two small ones that escaped me), tell me.
That's all. Try Inform for yourself. You'll probably enjoy it.
For those of you who didn't know or don't remember, the reason why VC&G has been quiet lately is because I'm in the middle of moving to a new house. After I'm settled, things will be back to normal (I also got married on May 1st. So you can imagine that I've been quite busy). Until then, I've got a few pictures for you. The first picture (above) is of the first computer I set up in my new house. It's a Mac Color Classic that I'm currently slowly playing The Secret of Monkey Island on (great game, by the way). I set it up in a little dormer nook in an otherwise empty room upstairs. In lieu of proper furniture, it gets the next best thing: the floor. When the hustle and bustle of all the moving gets to me, I can retreat to my "Mac room" and relax. But not for very long, of course, because there are plenty more computers to move! Chop chop!
Remember my "Compact Mac Shelf?" Well, I've had to leave that luxury behind. The closest I can get to that in my new place is what you see here. The previous owners left this wall-mounted TV stand in the kitchen, and upon first seeing it, I didn't think "TV." I thought…well, you can tell what I thought, because the picture illustrates it quite vividly. Anyway, if the wife lets me, I might rig up some sort of useless-but-fun interactive Mac art installation. Then again, it's likely that we'll actually just put a color TV up there (if we ever get one that size). Still, I thought the new "Mac Shelf" was worth a picture.
That's all for now. I'll still be chatting some in the VC&G Forums before I get back up to full steam again, so join in the fun (Haven't joined yet? Why not?). And don't worry — more interesting and original VC&G articles are definitely on the way.