I’ve hit double digits in this tenth instalment of OZARIN‘s weekly catchup feature. Let’s celebrate with an extra-packed Something for the weekend!
On this, the blackest of Black Friday weekends, I’ll be trying to grab a few gaming bargains. I’ve already managed to pick up a bunch of reduced items from my Steam wishlist, including a couple of gaming documentaries. There are plenty of great discounted titles, so if you’re a Steam user, check out their Exploration Sale.
This week, four new members were added to IGDA Scotland‘s board. Each of them brings their knowledge and experience to a board of advisors, who help to develop the game development scene in Scotland, through their involvement in education and events.
— IGDA Scotland (@IGDAScotland) November 25, 2015
Congratulations to Malath Abbas, Jaime Cross, Tony Gowland and Jon McKellan on your recent new positions! You can read more about all of the candidates in this IDGA Scotland blog post.
The UK government has introduced a new work visa, which could greatly benefit the games industry. The ‘exceptional talent’ visa, which is aimed at “applicants with exceptional skills in digital technology” will allow companies operating within the UK to recruit talented, non-residents. It’s a hopeful piece of news which should allow the UK tech industry to compete with other countries on more even footing.
Today marks 20 years since an infamous loading screen patent was filed by Namco Ltd. The patent, which prevents other game developers from including mini-games during loading screens expires today. Those familiar with Namco’s first Tekken game on the PlayStation, which was released in 1995, will remember the Galaga (YouTube) arcade space-shooter which was playable during the game’s initial loading sequence.
News of the patent’s expiry is being celebrated by indie developers, who have announced the Loading Screen Jam via itch.io. Participants have until December 4th to submit their Loading Screen inspired game projects to the competition, so if you have a quiet week ahead, it’s something you might want to take part in.
From around the web..
Alan Zucconi shares his colour study techniques in Game Barcode: A Study of Colours in Games. Using Python, Zucconi shows how to output a colour script from a play through video. This is a great means of analysing videos – whether they’re of animation work or video games. Pixar are quite famous for their use of finely choreographed colour scripts to move their audience.
Last week, Mark Brown posted a new Game Maker’s Toolkit video, Following the Little Dotted Line. He discusses the importance of immersing yourself inside a video game and that the HUD and even the missions themselves can sometimes get in the way of just enjoying the world. The Game Maker’s Toolkit is a fantastic series looking a different aspects of game design. Definitely worth subscribing to.
Bryant Francis wrote this great article for Gamasutra, 7 great mini games that game developers should study. This ties-in slightly to loading screen games mentioned above, as one of the titles suggested in this piece is Galaga. Also mentioned are the Fallout 4 holotapes. These mini-games are scattered throughout the wasteland and parody successful classics, such as Pitfall, Donkey Kong and Missile Command. These are great little experiments that are worth considering if you’re stuck for inspiration.
99% Invisible is a great podcast, teaching design and history. In episode 189, The Landlord’s Game, Roman Mars (@romanmars) and guests discuss the history behind world renowned board game, Monopoly. The show features some insight on game theory by Eric Zimmerman. The latest episode discusses super hero costume design. It’s a really well produced show. I’ve been enjoying it for a while now.
It’s almost that point in the season where I take a little down-time over the Christmas holidays. As such, I’m accruing a number of tutorials to work through. Of course, it’s the season of sharing also, so here are a couple of resources I have my eye on.
Touch Arcade have put together a great collection of tutorials in the Pay What You Want: Learn to Code Bundle. Whilst the majority of these relate to web-languages (which are useful in their own right), it might be worth considering for the “Git Complete: The Definitive, Step-By-Step Guide” alone. Version control is of massive importance when it comes to creating your own projects, and Git versioning software can be a little jarring at first, but well worth the time spent learning. Currently, the full bundle will only cost you $12.86 and it’s available until Monday.