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About DogCity

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  1. DogCity

    Good RPGs - where are they?

    The Lord of the Rings Online has a pretty good story.
  2. DogCity


    The Dell Studio range has some decent discrete graphics options, and they are thoroughly mid price range. Also they are still laptops, rather than semi-portable hobs.
  3. DogCity


    How doo gamedev.net? Well it's been too long and I apologise to anyone that it may have concerned for my not keeping of a more consistent journal. It was never a strong point for me; all that writing and formatting which wasn't GAME development. Still, I've found it to be an extremely valuable tool to keep track of my progress when I am developing a game, and so, it is with great humility that I return to this hallowed sanctum of geekyness and ask you fine ladies and gentlemen to enjoy, destroy and something-rymes-with-roy my bi-monthly (hah!) accounts of the creation of a new game and my sometime freelancing at whatever I can get my hands on. But first, it seems like a good time to get the elephant in the room ...out of the room and through whatever exit will accommodate his hugeimungous ass acreage. Such an ungainly exposition will require nothing less than a gamedev.net sized tube. For those who remember, I tried to make an MMO. It failed. In this first journal instalment of a new chapter, I will provide a short treatise on Tearsols crashing and burning, including how it ended in great justice. A gap in the market. Tearsol was not a labour of love, for me at least. It was conceived as a project compromise between me and my long time co-developer friend, then vacuum packed into a format which I believed held significant value. Though I did come to relate to it almost like a family member, it was more like dealing with the rebellious teenager who you've invested too much precious life force into to let it walk out of the door wearing dungarees, and nothing else. Like most informed adults, I was aware of the immense amount of work, cost, and sleepless nights I'd have to live with, but felt that if I could get that thing out the door with a reasonable set of clothes and a sensible hair cut, I'd complete two key objectives: 1) Be very, very proud of myself and the people who made it happen. And... 2) Never have to work again. What I'm trying to say is, I had (and still have) a firm belief that the market we were building Tearsol for is vastly undersupplied and will make a very fine living for the people who manage to tap it. The generous offers of investment I received toward the end of the project demonstrated this, and NCSoft are obviously keen to get a piece of it, which is enough proof for me. This made the ending of the project an extremely welcome break from something which began as indie game development, but rather quickly morphed into an excessively stressful and frankly bizarre pseudo business. So objective 2 would have to wait for a while. I realised, however, upon finally closing the books on Tearsol, that I had more than fulfilled objective 1. I was immensely proud of what had been produced. We had a game. When Tearsol was finally put to sleep it had the beginnings, the very faint beginnings, of a great game. I'm sure that I saw our work through rose tinted glasses, but it seemed to me that what we managed to produce had all the makings of a great experience. That is to say: We had done all the right things, and all the right things were being done. Granted, we were barely off the starting grid and our destination was still obscured by the curvature of the earth, but races can be won and lost in their first few moments, and the race was going bloody great right up until we stalled and gently rolled to a halt. I had the pleasure to write three references for team members while developing Tearsol. One of those members is now in full time game development employ, thanks in no small part to the wonderful artwork he produced for Tearsol. A second found work with a major French game developer; though I suspect his 20 years of programming experience did most of the talking, I do like to think that the time spent on Tearsol and the help I provided with his side projects allowed him to demonstrate that he was capable of game development. Personally, I learned a vast amount. Mainly from the other members of the team who were patient as saints as I muddled through code, applications, and artistic conventions which I could never have understood without their help. I wrote some 40k words in the course of documenting Tearsol, and that figure could be twice as much if I included the vast MSN verbiage and rambling e-mail correspondence about everything from service structure to dead reckoning. A tangible result of this is my truly terrible 64k word space opera sci-fi novel, which I could never have contemplated writing if I hadn't seen how easy 40k could be. So we all had a whale of a time, and have made many friends and great contacts for life. To me, that is more than enough cause to be very, very proud of what we produced --even if it's not available for public consumption. As for the money, well that comes and goes, but such experience and friendship is priceless. True, it won't buy a Porsche, but I'm more of an Aston Martin man anyway. Wait. Those things won't buy an Aston either? In the end we were victims of our own success. Like lemmings, I suppose. The shining talent inside the team could only have resulted in one unfeasibly ironic result, to which I was utterly blind until the discussions about job hunting and portfolios hit a fever pitch just a few months before we drew the project to a close. Perhaps I should have tried harder to sell the ultimate goal of fame and fortune in those last few weeks as each briefly intersecting agent whirred off on a new tangent, but it felt like an empty plea when we had already achieved so much. You can download the Tearsol source here. It does not include our licensed networking libraries. My new project is significantly simpler, in traditional terms, but no less audacious. Stay tuned for more information once it exists.
  4. DogCity

    Gdnet members of times past

    I think it's a disgrace. People should post here uniformly, and without interruption. Lurking just isn't cricket.
  5. DogCity

    Phones, Fones, and Automophones.

    Whats a helios?
  6. DogCity

    Sprite issues

    Google is an expert!
  7. DogCity

    Heaven, hell, and purgatory.

    Quote: Also will these online (or offline) geology books and pamphlets and writings tell me what's under the 5th layer of the crust of the earth? (to recap - dirt,clay,red clay, gray clay, tan material, ... x ..., ... y ..., ... z ...) does the pattern of 1m thick layers continue? What are the next 400 or so layers? I have it on good authority that it's donkeys all the way down.
  8. DogCity

    Sprite issues

    Nope. But you can make a macro in photoshop to do it super fast.
  9. Just when you thought it was safe to go back on the interwebs ...I'm pleased to announce a new version of the Export-Games website! Not quite, but almost, featuring all our projects, forums and the world famous Developer Journals. Constructive feedback is more than welcome, though the site is not going to change for at least another year, so perhaps not the best use of your time ;). [Edited by - DogCity on May 21, 2007 1:33:47 PM]
  10. AFAIK it isn't and legaly can't be illegal to write a server emulator. However, providing that server for public consumption is a grey area. Consequently, charging for the service is highly illegal.
  11. DogCity

    We're Back!

    Congratulations and err, thank you! Oh damn. Crimbo avatar.
  12. DogCity

    Whats up with Gamedev.net

    Quote:Original post by tstrimp Quote:Original post by Dave I agree that of late there hasn't been much activity on the articles front but it has already been pointed out that there are alot of good posts in the journals. But they simply aren't accessible. You have to browse for people who write quality journal entries vs those who write about how bad their day has been. Something along the lines of featured journals might be a nice addition that would bring some attention to journals that deserve it. Maybe provide some of the excellent journal posters with a more public (as in more visible) journal exclusively for programming or technical posts. I think a lot of people could benefit if there was a Ysaneya's corner that was semi-permanently linked from the forums or a side bar somewhere. Being able to add keyword meta tags to Journals and articles would allow for some pretty accurate sorting without potentially crappy automated spidering generally foofing things up. If its just a 'life sux' post then it can include 'life, sux' tags, if it's about wormhole physics then there goes two more. Easy, and instantly sortable. I vote for keyword tags in Journal and Article entries. Also dancing javascript hippos, but this is further down the to do list.
  13. DogCity

    Tom Bob and Jim.

    The Ballad of the Overzealous Newbie reminded me of this little number I flung together a year or two back. Being that it has never been posted in the Humour Portal I thought I'd pop it up. This is the slightly revised xmass 06 edition. Enjoy :). Tom, Jim and Bob. In MMORPG's That Don't Now an unpopular series! With twelve years of age and one half a mind. Little Jimmy set out to make a design. With pen and best friend he scribbled away, Till late at night the moonlight turned day... After a breakfast of kings, they gathered their folio, Five pieces of paper, one smudged with blue polo. Boarding the school bus, a triumphant affair, They greeted Tom Quazbie, a director of hot air. They looked'a one another and smiled in delight And presenting Tom the papers proclaimed: "We did it in one night!" A sturdy young lad, Tom knew how to design, He'd played a good MMORPG called Anarchy Online. He'd been a fine Soldier all the way through, But on Sunday just past his subscription was due! Money was short and grandma said no, He threw a small farewell, but no one did show. But things would change now he was in charge, A game of 50,000, surely not so hard? And with pace and panache he put them to work, His dedicated minions Jimmy and Bob Jerk! So sitting now, in their bright yellow bus, The presentation began, shush hush hush! Smiling with glee their artist in lead, Presented the hero, complete with great steed, Legs like a rabbits and the head of a goat, Featuring three horns and a blue overcoat. The knight rode tall, back straight and true, His feed scraped the ground and helmet was huge! Done and dusted with only one smudge Bob folded his work and looked to Jimmy Bludge Associate producer, just like the movies, No video game guru, Jim shifted uneasily. His work was quite good, he knew it for sure, But time was a factor, he knew the score. If production began that afternoon, Chances were good they would be online by June. His notes were presented to rapt applause, Two whole unlined side of recycled A4. It detailed, in-fact, less than the picture But omens were good, they now had scripture! And so the bus, laden with promise, Pulled in to school and stopped with a grimace. Three hero's unloaded and made their first call, The IT suite down the main school hall. Stopping to log with their old id cards, they chose the team name, "Om3g4 M4ch1n3 G0r3!" Each taking a chair, they gathered around, Tom typed the address, he couldn't fail now! http:// ... www. ... game...dev ... .net In a moment it loaded, like a magical spell The news page was updated, he clicked through to hell... His own user account was already logged in, A special feature known only to him. In a moment he way typing an advert to all Help wanted on a project, No money - what gall! Now I ask you most humbly, you reader of this, Grant me a short pause, I must take a piss. Allow my friend Tom a moment of pride, As he makes his first post to the lounge of this site... Dear freinds thank youfor reading and please join my tam. i am making a new game like Ragnorak and arnrcy online with so mnay players there are more than both of them caled GRAWL and i will be adming or (gods) wihr my frend0s and you when you join me our tam. i now that you lke to see mmorpg desgn documents from beinghere are at we ahve writne bur its all for when you join because ther is to much and secreet world in my groin. please joinm when we can begin makng it my frends time is to shrt no messig!! Now as you can see, young Tom didn't fit His typing was basic, he sounded quite thick All noble intention flown like a bird, The forum did sour and muttering was heard. For two long hours no comment was posted Until later that day a single image was hosted A silly reply of no value or grace, Merely a picture divided four separate ways, "Abstract art" of "no consequence" tom said, "People like this get flamed and then bled" By happy chance a moderator stopped by, The post was quite brief, he then said goodbye. The news was good, a promotion, it seemed From lowly Lounge rats, to 'Help Wanted' queens. The topic was moved - in line with Toms plan, He now had endorsement, a high ranking man! Some minutes passed, Jim looked pasty, The project itself was not going gracefully. But then a post, quite helpful indeed, By a wise man of vintage two thousand and three. His language was sharp, but Tom understood More information was needed, the prognosis was good! Turning to Jim, designer of GRAWL, He laid out his plans, capital letters and all. To emphasize the details, about ogres and elves Was surely the way to get the game on the shelves! Bob piped up and offered his artwork, The one with the dwarf riding a blue aardvark. The cover of the box should surely cost extra A title in bold, embossed with a texture! So on they went, plans laid on plans, Five more sheets were ruined and canned. But the production schedule called for action, So Tom began typing, he was ready for traction... All ovido games are he same, like all mmorgp EQ and arnrcy online but GRAWL is diffnrt bedcaus it s not like EQor arnrcy onile. We are using game engin to have BIG monsters that are FLYNING to! and i need a programmer(5) (althosh i do some to) ma Bob can do artwork but for cities we NED MAP MAKER!! important to work harrd with us, we noslackers! thank you freinds. He finished his post with the witty retort... p.s. does games cities like arnrcy use diffnrt from eQ?!? haha! Which he was certain would gain him a plus and good mark. In the time it had taken to write his short piece, The number of posts was on the increase. He looked either side to Jim and to Bob, Who stared in confusion, faster readers than Tom The replies were coming now, some thick and some thin, On second appraisal most were quite grim. Many were rude, one was unkind, One called Toms writing style simply sublime. As the content sunk in, Toms face slowly fell, Message on message invited him to go to hell. ------------------------------------------------------------------ I advice 30 minutes meditation between each episode to fully contemplate the deeper meaning and structural metaphors leveraged in the text. ------------------------------------------------------------------ Tom, Jim and Bob. In MMORPG's That Don't #2 Now an unpopular series! The trio of losers, known as Tom, Bob and Jim, Went home that evening to a defending din. The forum was alight, their post in ruins, No one understood that GRAWL was a shoo-in. But our heroes three, did not loose hope, They still had a noose, and a good length of rope. Revising their plans on the bumpy ride home, An agreement was struck, they needed a tome! So off to capital library they did lope, Their bus long gone in a cloud of black smoke. Tea would go cold, supper and drinks, Left on the side board, cooling in sinks. Their parents would worry, this kind of lark, Was beyond any joke found on Fark. But the mission was on, no time to call, A forum was angry, one and all! Now silence descended as they entered the halls A halloed place, just like St Pauls. Here, stacked in rows, ten columns thick Was surely a book on making a game quick! They split up and searched, for title unknown A step-by-step plan to take on home. As daylight faded and night closed in The peace was shattered by a defining din! Tom ran in joy to the head of the hall, Brandishing a tome as big as a maul “Sams Teach yourself”, was titled in bold “In 24 hours!” was printed in gold! C++ the language of choice, A miracle of syntax, easy as Joyce. “This” he said, holding it high, “Is what the angry people had shouted, but why?” Upon closer inspection, all became clear, The book had a CD, they leaped in the air. And 24 Hours wasn't that long, Only one day, they'd do it anon. So home they went, one copy in hand, Back on track, to building a new land! Each slept soundly that cold winter night, With dreams wrapped in fantasy covered in delight. Then, with the day break, and morning routine, They gathered once more in their yellow submarine. And chugging with gusto right to the school door, The bus unloaded and went off for more. Straight to IT, the mission was on, The losers sat down, Tom began to hum, The book was brought out, CD inserted The egg-timer spun, the CD was dirty Till some minutes later, a dialog opened Advising Tom Quazbie the CD was broken! Hours of planning straight down the plug Tom lost his nerve and kicked the hub. But having been reading, now on the third page Jim piped up, he had something to say... “The CD is pointless, It says so right here, All that is on it Is source code for stuff we aren't going to build, Tom, so...” Bob leapt in the air, and smudged his new drawing An Alligator or something, eating an orange. Now it was on, they could start their project, A magical world on a monthly budget. Taking their places, they huddled in close, Tom typed the address with flamboyant key strokes! http://www.gamedev.net In a moment it loaded, like a magical spell The news page was updated, he clicked through to hell... Tom navigated deftly to his old post, Now two pages back, still belching black smoke. Clicking with ease, he opened their request, The help wanted add, from my fist jest. Now three pages long, interest was high, But their man on this inside had stopped all reply. Not fazed in the slightest, Tom started again. This time he was ready, his typing began... Hello feinds thanks. im a programer and am lerning in C++ so i need help with my GRAWL! please join now to help in programers(7) and a levl designer for HUGE FCITY. our busines plan is Jim and we have art for monster and player of 200.000 to be in it. I don not care oif you do not like our game just leave and shut up, we are serious at this so ples no noobs!! Four whole lines was surely enough, To silence the haters who love to rebuff. But language, we know, was not his forte, And finishing like that was just not the way! The replies soon began, including the picture, This time respondents were a different mixture. Some suggested FAQ's Others were rude Everyone laughed Toms post was moved. ------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------ Tom, Jim and Bob. In MMORPG's That Don't #3 Now an unpopular series! “Now is the winter of our discontent” Muttered Bob as he scratched his name into a bench. Our trio of heroes, now just empty husks, Sat staring in anguish at Sams C++. The project was doomed, And GRAWL was dead, Shot down in a firestorm of brutal contempt. But they were not beaten, though terribly scarred, They vowed to continue, no matter how hard. So sitting now quietly, they studied the pages, Each thinking the same thing "This is going to take ages". But study they did, and when they got tired, They went home to sleep, and dreamed of compilers. A new day dawned and the buses rolled in, The morning routine, the usual din. Straight to IT, one of their favourite places, They logged-on in silence, concern on their faces. “The plan today is to learn all we can” Said Jim as he typed, with only one hand. “Some articles", he mentioned, "might help us out" "I'll find some more websites, they must be about.” All through that day the three of them learned, Not stopping for lunch, not even a turd. They surfed all the sites, but flipcodes' no more, They downloaded cool demos, and source code galore. Bob found free software, and began to design A car like his fathers, with fine racing lines. And when the long day, came to an end, They went back home, three wiser young men. The following day, a weekend break, They gathered with friends, down by the lake. Bob wore his anorak and Jim was in tights A stranger collection, you never did sight. The sun was low and snow covered the green, They forgot all their worries, Tom started to dream. ...A world of ice and reindeer and penguins, With a jingle bells tune, looped never ending. He woke with a start, then realizing slowly, Holy intervention had blessed him most nobly. Now charged with a quest, to make it a seasonal game, A far simpler affair, but still a good strain! He turned to Bob Jerk, and waving his arms, Flapped like a bird, Bob stared in alarm. Jim, who was nearby, noticed the fuss, He readied his Biro and arrived in a rush! Speaking in tongues, with uneasy plurals, The outline Bob gave them was beautifully tuneful... And so it was on, a much smaller project, More fitting to people on a rather tight budget. Bob drew some penguins, a magnificent feet, They wore coloured waistcoats and had bendy beaks. The landscape was quite stunning, to be viewed from above, Three hours of work and only one smudge. And Tom got to work on a design document, Presenting in detail, his plans for development Even Jim chipped in with a production schedule, A system, he new, would increase their potential! And then they were ready, with everything planned, Nothing left to do but take matters into hand... Now four months have passed... and I would be wrong, To say it was easy, that it didn't take long. Times were hard, and problems were plentiful But they pulled together and have done something special. Not a full game by any respect, Or even that close to the original spec. But they do have reindeer, and moving ice. Its good fun to jump, from place to place. And now they are ready, for the help wanted pages, Responses are likely, polite ones with praises. Each taking a chair, they gather around, Tom types the address, they wont fail now. Http://.www.gamedev.net In a moment it loaded, like a magical spell The news page was updated, he clicked through to hell... But now things were different, he had a design, And a demo to show their resolve in hard-times. Respondents were few, but better than none, A private message agreed their game was fun. The old project once burning, now covered in dust. A sleeping reminder, of dreams we can't trust. But from the old wreckage, a new design grew, Built on sound knowledge, and experience too. A tale of daredevil reindeer and dangerous penguins, Travelling with Santa to deliver new playthings. And far to the east arenas can be seen, And ten thousand hockey players screaming with glee.
  14. DogCity

    Rage Against The Machine comeback!

    Well perhaps a little hope there :). Looking forward to this!
  15. DogCity

    need one word changed on this logo

    Post the logo and requirements here and you might get a bored artist to help :) Otherwise, I wouldn't hold your beath about someone bothering to e-mail to request it.
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