Monday, May 12, 2014

New game programming tutorial series

Hey! I just started a new programming tutorial designed for the basics of learning programming with the intent of using it for game design! I love a lot of the programming tutorials that are available but I feel like I want to cater to a very specific audience who wants to learn to program well, but also wants to eventually use this skill for game design, You can check it out.. 


Thanks for reading! 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Multiplayer needs a huge boost to get back into the game

So lately I've been playing Final Fantasy XIV's beta, it's a terrific game, but there was a few things that I was thinking about when it came to the whole "multiplayer" aspect of it.

So MMOs are typically supposed to be multiplayer, just on a huge scale. While I was playing FFXIV, me and three other friends were trying to do a dungeon, because in the game there are 4-player dungeons, which sound awesome. So when we started we immediately tried partying, and turns out that one of our group started in 'Limsa luminsa' which basically meant he was on an island, and there was no way we could get to him, nor him us. So with one down, we had 3 people who started in another city called 'Gridania' without intentionally trying, so we started in the same locale, so the three of us partied. We all continued leveling (which took forever, but it's an MMO). Once we hit level 10 or so, I decided to go ahead and check which dungeon would be achievable first. There was one available at level 15, "sweet" I thought, "Not so far away now!".

After skimming through a little more I saw that dungeons were only available through story quests. I went off and did some of the story quests when it told me "This story quest is for one person only, this will make you leave your party". A little annoying, but hopefully I shouldn't have to do too many of these; I was wrong. We sat around on that Skype call for probably about 5 hours that day, and none of us were even close to doing these, from some of us dying, to the confusion of other people not knowing which quests, to the slow leveling the story quests ensued. It was just a huge slowdown with how much excitement we had from the get go, we went from actively communicating on mic, to absolutely no chat. We sat around and were just grinding through all these story quests (which every single one at this point is single player with no other options). We eventually hopped off Skype that night, and we were all a little disappointed, we coordinated classes so we would have a good mix and well rounded party, after 6 hours of playing straight, none of us even got to experience any multiplayer, it was almost exclusively single player. It took 2 hours after we began next try to even get to the first dungeon.

Now don't get me wrong, I think FFXIV is an amazing MMO, but the main point I'm trying to drag away from this is that it should not be this hard to play a game with friends. Most games in present day seem to have some weird factor that will always prevent you and your friends from playing together, until "X is completed". It just makes it feel a little shallow, after getting together with friends in the first place to play the game.

Maybe I'm wishing for too much, maybe I'm just over thinking this, but I miss the days of starting a character on Diablo 2 and having everyone be able to get together and play it from the get-go. I just feel like it might be asking too much to have a multiplayer game that will actually be very simple to play with friends. Multiplayer games just seem like they would have multiplayer, maybe I could be wrong (someone help me out here?). Of course most of these games will reward you for getting to these parts, the dungeons in MMOs are usually rewarding in themselves and usually are more than worth getting to that landmark. I just feel like something is terribly wrong with your game if you have to play for 8 hours to be able to have access to doing anything with your friends.

> Borderlands is an amazing franchise that does most of the amazing points I am trying to point out, from the very start, without doing absolutely nothing else you can immediately play with friends and enjoy your game.

> Guild Wars 2 had a pretty good setup as well, you can party at any time, and if you do things that are level specific, it will down-level/up-level you accordingly.

LAN games are mostly a thing of the past, companies are way too concerned with piracy and will do absolutely anything at the gamers expense to rid the problem, whether that is cutting out LAN, or making it to where you have to play a single player game while connected to the internet. LAN parties are absolutely one of the few ways gamers could possibly get together and socialize. LAN was available in the days where gaming was all about being a neckbeard with no friends, and no social life, and took it away when gaming took a huge jump up and reached out to a huge audience, seems backwards?

Split-screen is almost non-achievable now except for on a few select games, so pretty much that whole aspect of multiplayer is completely dead, someone shot split screen right in the face when they realized that they could sell more if 2 people had to buy 2 copies, rather than 1 copy.

So in conclusion, I love multiplayer games, having a group of people get together to all achieve one goal in a game, I've had some of the most amazing memories and times during LAN parties. I just hope more developers realize this. I know I will do everything I can to jump start the heart of a dying breed of games. Local multiplayer cannot be a thing of the past, because if we allow it to die then that will be the end of the golden age of multiplayer.


I would love to hear everyones thoughts on this, I absolutely love hearing opinions and to see what most people think about different things in the gaming world. Feel free to drop me a line, email, message, comment, telegraph, phone-call. Anything. Thanks for reading, and sorry for wasting your precious life.

Friday, July 12, 2013

I hate social media, but that's how everything works now.

Alright, so I figured I would go ahead and post all forms to follow me here, follow me at :

Vine : Brandon Casebolt

And here, I'll try and direct all posts here, so this will actually be the first place I update! :).

First post!

It started in 6th grade when one of my friends introduced me to a program called BYOND. It was a website where you could create games and publish them onto this website and other people could play it. I immediately was interested in the developing side of the fence.I started making games with the help of my friend, and already had some cheap, playable games. The program did a lot of work for you and it was very simple to make a game that was decent to play.
I played with that tool for a while until I got into high school, once I got into high school I stopped programming for a bit, and focused on music. I joined the high school band, and had a band of my own which I played guitar for both. I studied music theory and took a few classes on it. 
When I was around 15 I was pretty interested in making games with Java, mainly because I was tired of making these 2d 10 FPS games, and wanted to do game development as a full time career. Around this time was the age where indie didn't have as much of a foothold as it holds today. So after looking into my vision I decided to be a little bit more realistic and strode away from development.
Around a year ago, I already had a full-time career, and still do, and I decided that indie was starting to bloom as a huge thing, so I decided to pick it up and work on it in my spare time while keeping my full time job, as of now I am working on one project, and already have one more idea written up. I do the programming/art/music/sounds/ideas for my projects.
As far as my projects go, I don't want to reveal too much without having anything to show for it, as far as ideas go though I really love co-operative games. I always have loved them whenever I was younger and they are still my favorite games to play. Friends working together to achieve one goal, by different means. It builds friendship, it forms friendship, and its fun! I also love the idea of local coop (multiple people, one machine) and I hope to incorporate that into my games as well.
Right now I am working on C#, using the monogame framework, using Monodevelop as an IDE. I really love using these, and they are very flexable tools.
I would love to get more projects rolling faster, so if there are any fellow programmers or artists, or anything, that are willing to team up, or contribute, or network, or anything, I love meeting new people. Shoot me an e-mail or anything!