Sep. 11th, 2011

ordinal: (Default)
I did like the recent Who episode ( The Girl Who Waited ) but it also pointed out to me quite how far Who has gone in terms of absolute nonsense about time paradoxes and, particularly, "if we do X, Y will never have happened!" - something which was being subtly attacked in the plot. Whenever you hear this phrase in a Who episode you can be sure that it Does Not Mean What You Think It Means.

Obviously, spoilers, but say that in a River Song way and I will remove your face )

Now, time-travel-wise, what is really being happening is moving between different timelines; in that case, yes, you can have people who remember things from one whereas everyone in the new timeline doesn't, you're moving between similar universes. But you know what happens if you "collapse a timeline"? You destroy everyone in it. They did exist, and now they don't. The "universe reset button" in the last series basically killed everyone apart from our three protagonists.

There is an alternative to this, of course. Perhaps these paradoxical events really did "never happen". What we are doing in watching Who, in this case, is following the delusions of a series of people who are having acausal experiences not connected to external reality. Everything they remember having happened never actually happened and was all in their heads. Perhaps they are brains in jars, too. (This level of philosophy of mind also makes bad drama, as well, I admit.)
ordinal: (Default)
On the other hand, I know very few people here at all, though that has never stopped me waffling on. Thus, please say "hello" if you see this post and know who I am.
ordinal: (Default)
I have something to confess. I have become obsessed with making 8x8 pixel sprites.

It started when I began writing HTML5 games, concentrating on the Roguelike style, which requires sprites, really. (I did start off with character-based displays but did not find this very satisfying.) If I had not had Sprite Something for my iPad, I probably would have given up at this stage, but I do, so I didn't.

At first, 16px tiles and sprites were fine. I even flirted briefly with 32px ones, or such oddities as 24px isometric tiles. But gradually the size reduced. It is so much quicker to create an 8x8 pixel sprite, and also, in practice, more of a challenge - the colour of every pixel counts.

Of course, an 8px sprite is basically invisible on a modern computer screen, and to be visible, these images have to be enlarged to 32px or more. Here is the current state of my primary 8px character/monster tileset, enlarged to four times normal size:


All images full copyright - these are things I may use.

Tile 101 is me:



Quite a few of those are to be moved to other sheets. The system I have worked out allows for dynamic tilesets, anyway, which don't give away details of tiles the player hasn't seen, and this is not designed to be a generic fantasy game - the demons and elementals were for practice. But I have hundred more of the things - objects, map tiles, icons. Late at night, in bed, I take out my iPad and stylus and shift pixels about. It's worrying and probably, in practice, unproductive.

p.s.: I am aware of the "oryx" sprites, and they're very good work, but not quite what I'm looking for. In any case I would like to do things myself.
ordinal: (Default)
What I would like to do would be to create little "stealth" games that can fit inside other sites.

For instance, with 8px sprites, you could fit an entire game into a 100x100px space. That's nothing in the modern browser world. That's a tiny area in a sidebar, and the Javascript required is not huge, either. Zoom in if you'd like to see it in detail, or just move around and explore a world.

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