• Welcome to droqen's forum-shaped notebook. Please log in.

Show posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Show posts Menu

Topics - droqen

w***** recently started a small devlog in paradise for P******* (****) and i had a thought: i want to respond to this, but i don't have anything to say yet. i don't know if speaking up will be meaningful. i guess this is where 'likes' came from. but... you know what? i hate likes! they're the worst. likes can die.

likes make lurking into something social-visible-acceptable, but likes also suck.

that is, if someone is reading and lurking, likes turn that into something visible; they make it easy for a lurker to turn into an 'active social participant'. but likes are hollow. they're more visible than lurking, but they just draw attention to the fact that no meaningful social interaction is occurring. a like is just a visible view. a like just draws attention to that emptiness.
Reminder to self: It is about appreciation, passion, love. I will be critical, but always looking forward.

"I'm pretty nerdy about it. I think of it as converting/sinking/gaining resources. // But .. I like to pull it back to what is the fantasy we're trying to convey."

I really like what Asher is saying about balancing -- it's just feeling it out, trying it out. This quote in particular though seems like something I can't get behind, but maybe it's very useful? Slapping a skin on top of a system. Shouldn't the fantasy run throughout the system? Maybe that's just the system-head in me. I want the form and content to be the same, not just gesture at each other.

New thought: maybe I just don't really care for the theme of Beast Breaker?

That is, I PREFER THE SYSTEM TO THE FANTASY, but my thought process goes wrong immediately afterwards.


But instead, the thought shoud not be made general. I prefer the system to the fantasy... What do I like about the system? What don't I like about the fantasy?

Ther emight be a fantasy I like as much as or more than a system, and in that case I might love the marriage of the two.

FORM is not superior to CONTENT, they are just different.
uncategorized projects / Remake Probability 0?
November 04, 2021, 12:15:09 AM
I don't want to do a port but the basic premise and level generator and some of the enemy logic for Probability 0 really has legs. I would potentially really enjoy this!

Revisit the good ol' fall damage roguelike?
Making a game can be difficult, systemic games especially. Everything leaning on everything else. It's a hell of a puzzle. I liked the frankly relaxing nature of making a new game every day: throwing away the stress of "today's work must build upon yesterday's work" in favour of a structure enabling maximum freedom -- to empower myself to do "whatever I feel like" today.

I didn't stick completely to familiar genres, but I stuck to a few things that would help me stay on track and some of those things did involve sticking to some familiar spaces.
1, Every game is built in a single Godot project with all assets in its own folder (with exceptions: 12, 28, and 29 comprise the cassette player "meta" game, so they share assets). Using one engine and a clean format from the start made it possible to bundle the games together. I had folders named "1thru10," "11thru20," and "21thru30" from day one.

2, Every game is 310x130 resolution, and uses 10x10 tiles. The 'weird' resolution and tile size kept me on my toes, not relying too much on old patterns, was powerful/flexible enough to never get in my way, and finally was fixed so I never had to waste time thinking about what the right parameters were for a given game, they were already set.

3, Every game uses 4 directions and 1 button. The escape key takes you back to the menu. Same benefits as above, but also easy for the player to learn.

4, Every game has a win condition.

5. In every game you have an avatar that you directly control using the given inputs. There is a 'puzzle', as you move from game to game, of understanding the controls. Having this fixed across all games meant that it would never be much of a problem. also I just like this type of game! It lends itself to platformers often, but not always.
I like signs of human activity.

In Haven & Hearth I loved just walking around the land & seeing the farmsteads that people had built. I could not interact with them because doing so was a crime and I had not spent my learning points on the ability to commit crimes, but it was not about interaction anyway--it was about seeing the consequences of interaction, the footprints of play. I knew the world was lived in.

Although it once irritated me, now I love walking around cities & seeing the things that I do not, and may perhaps never, have cause to interact with. Maybe it's age and experience, maybe it's just a new perspective; regardless it's enough for me, to imagine with confidence that there is a fascinating way in which these things are used by real people. With experience seeing the guts of how urban spaces function comes the ability to imagine how urban spaces function comes the ability to trust that urban spaces function and are not just constructed absurdities.


"Who's your favourite games writer?" I asked on Twitter. Here is a list of the responses, simplified for my browsing pleasure.

uncategorized projects / TODO: rain (@ptychomancer)
October 30, 2021, 10:49:04 AM
Quote from: Jason Grinblatan mmo whose servers are only accessible when it's raining in your area

uncategorized projects / TODO: chords (3/9)
October 30, 2021, 10:48:14 AM
Hit three keys on your numpad (1-9), then hit three new keys, then hit the last three keys you didn't hit the first two times.
This is a pretty satisfying-but-awkward little loop!
Essay by @jseakle

Quotei'm playing a lot of Cinco Paus again, and I've been thinking about

~ ❈ The Treasure Cap ❈ ~

What is it?

A vivo (run) in Cinco Paus is divided into 50 jogos (games) of 5 zonas (zones) each. To survive, you'll need to find ways to create lots of the 5 types of treasure, which open doors, heal, identify spells, build into permanent upgrades, and score points.

Within each zona, you are only allowed to create 10 treasures total. After that, treasure creation abilities will do nothing.

How does it play?

Often, you don't notice it. In most zonas, you never come close to 10.

Sometimes, it's crucial — there exist some rare infinite combos in the game, and if there were no cap, you could never leave and farm infinite points. (infinites were still a bit too strong, so the latest build has an additional anti-infinite measure.)

In between those cases, it's frustrating! The game is all about optimizing limited resources, using one wand to do 3 different things. But sometimes, you optimize a bit too well, and suddenly you're left with extra treasure wands you can't use.

Doesn't that suck?

No. It's amazing actually.

Complex systems naturally give rise to narrow, degenerate strategies. Many games suffer from wide-open possibility spaces that you should just ignore if you want to play optimally. The treasure cap resists this. Instead, advanced play means evaluating your position early, realizing you're likely to cap next zona, and thus going out of your way to burn your resources "inefficiently" so that they won't be completely wasted later.

This is a very exciting kind of play! Using tools that are normally very valuable to set up tiny bits of marginal advantage because you're just too rich to use all of them normally is such a unique and delightful feeling. More games should punish you for doing too well — as long as they provide outlets for you to preempt this by spending your resources in "worse" ways that are still better than nothing.
Quote from: @nihilocrat / Kenny Backuswhat is a better way of naming things in a sci-fi videogame?

[48.8%] "laser cannon"

[51.2%] "crepusculant lucifer"

84 votes

Focus and ADHD / sore back, and blood in the floss
October 27, 2021, 08:11:32 AM
from this thread

in retrospect one of the most important things i ever learned was that if you floss and your gums bleed, it's not a sign that you're flossing too hard or that you should stop flossing. it's a sign that you waited too long, but it's a good thing you're doing it now.

it was very important because these days i've found myself thinking about a lot of things in life this way.

when i wake up in the morning & want to work on a game but my body aches a little, it's tempting to figure out how to use my body less all day in order to make it not ache but usually it's a sign that i'm using my body too little, that i've waited too long between moments of bodily activity. it's a sign that i waited too long, but it can only be a good thing to do some now.
Recipes, food / Clam Chowder
October 21, 2021, 09:53:54 PM
Oct 21


The annoying part: peeling, chopping onions (3 smallish: 1 yellow, 2 red) and potatoes (like 12 lol)
The rest is really easy and satisfying, you just boil milk and dump in the clams n juice n stuff :]
(I don't do the steaming clams, I just used 2 cans of baby clams (and juice), and a whole lil bottle of clam juice.)

Bit potatoey and I didn't blend it enough for Shelley. Could do with less potato maybe? She seemed to think it was fine.

Added quite a bit of salt and some MSG. Served with bread.
Tenets / a series of personal choices
October 20, 2021, 06:37:39 PM
Sid Meier is quoted as saying that a game is a "series of interesting choices." But what is an interesting choice, and is interesting good enough?

The best choices are never impersonal. A personal choice is one that different people would make differently, but which you would make the same way next time - unless you've changed personally in the interim.

When a choice is purely strategic, it ceases to be a work of art concerned with exploring its player's humanity. This doesn't mean a choice can't have a right answer and a wrong one; it's more about the attitude of the player, as cultivated by this game as well as their environment.

Making the 'wrong' choice for personal reasons may behighly meaningful, but a player's willingness to engage with choices as personal choices, rather than strategic ones, can be eroded if they learn that choosing personally might cause them harm.

If there is a right choice that rewards the player and a wrong choice that causes the player harm, they are being punished by the game for expressing themselves.

Do some games train players not to make personal choices?
Close reading / Chronicles of the Black Company
October 20, 2021, 01:22:23 PM
Quote from: The Books of the South, p327Her schemes could kill thousands, could distress millions, and to her it was play.

[He said, ]"I'll never understand you."

[...]She was neither young nor empty-headed. "I don't understand myself. But I gave up trying a long time ago. It's distracting."

Games. From the first she had been involved in tortuous maneuvers and manipulations, to no obvious end. Her great pleasure was to watch a scheme flower and devour its victim.

I want to remember this moment in which the motivations behind a character's machinations are exposed... as nothing, as something explicitly intentionally unexamined by the character herself. It's on a more grand, more evil scale, but these few lines are deeply moving to me about human nature.

Especially "I don't understand myself. But I gave up trying a long time ago. It's distracting." which reminds me distinctly of the interview with Agnes Martin.

The worst thing you can think about is yourself.
Ego and Emotion / love and fear
October 17, 2021, 01:27:21 PM
In Donnie Darko, the "fear and love" spectrum is presented and held by the protagonist it in great contempt.

Why love and fear? Kitty Farmer, the earnest but irritating target of the protagonist's mockery, explains, "Fear and love are the deepest of human emotions."

In Play Anything, Bogost coins ironoia, a "fear of things." By contrast, his exploration of the titular concept -- Play-- may be understood as a 'love of things.'

Primordial soup / What's the Content of my art?
October 16, 2021, 11:05:11 AM
The games I'm making for Droqtober are pretty abstract. What  is the subject matter?  I need to analyze.

The "fantasy" of a videogame is simply its content. The "platonic game" is the content.
Primordial soup / Fairy tales; retelling a videogame
October 15, 2021, 11:24:26 PM
Adaptable, and about fundamental human truths.

Fairy tales are carried across the world by people.

I guess now here is tech to help us carry our ideas across the world: but it must still be by people until such time a computer system's taste is more interesting than a person's.

Perhaps that day is coming.
Strongly inspired by Ian Bogost's Play Anything

Sometimes it's quite intimidating to play with real materials, but I'd like to do it more rather than shy away due to fear and risk aversion. Here are some things I'd like to play with more, and not just in games, but other interactive and noninteractive media:

    (as opposed to playing with someone else's emotions; i'm not interested in that, but i am interested in inviting others to play with their own feelings in a way that mirrors my own play)

It's easy to look at wasteful expensive games, and wasteful long games, and come to the conclusion that the issue is that they dare to ask for large amounts of money, large amounts of time. But, the end result of that is fear which I suppose is the opposite of play.

QuoteWe still want to skip over the proverbial sidewalk.
We still want to fashion the playgrounds that would lead us to novel experience.
But we've convinced ourselves that we can't or shouldn't.

In Play Anything, Bogost discusses Irony as a concept tightly bound to Meta in a way that mirrors Lulie's discussion of Meta in HOW TO ARGUE (pdf handout, workshop video).

QuoteEventually, the ironic actor doesn't even know whether she is earnest or contemptuous. Irony becomes unstoppable, devouring everything it touches[..] Once ironized, things can safely disappear into the background[..] Irony has become ubiquitous party because it [..] spreads so rapidly, infecting everything.

QuoteHow meta drives arguments into black holes:
  • Meta is off-topic.
  • Meta breeds meta.
        • You can't contradict a meta statement without making another meta statement.
  • Meta engages emotions.
        • Popper wants our ideas to die in our place. Meta wants to substitute us for our ideas, and less us die instead of them.
        • Meta changes the focus from the substance of what's being argued to attributes of the speaker or the nature of the discussion.

When expressing a fear of a thing, outside of the bounds of play, the attitude spreads: it's hard to engage playfully with real fear of a real thing, because play is a tool for celebrating a lack of fear, not a tool for defeating it.

Play is a tool for celebrating a lack of fear.

Play is a tool for engaging with real things as they are.
Close reading / Playthings (Miguel Sicart)
October 13, 2021, 05:34:25 AM
Miguel Sicart's Playthings