Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Click to enlarge.

My new personal best is 273 notes in a row in 100 seconds. I've done it twice in the last week. That speed was good enough to help inch my way up into 4th place. And when I say inch, I really mean it. As seen in the picture above, I'm just 1,200 points ahead of the person in 5th place (out of 161+ million). Whew!

I need to play roughly 0.5% faster overall (on 11 different scales) in order to get to #1. That definitely seems doable given enough practice and patience.

I've latched myself onto this mini-game like a honey badger would. Giving up is not an option! :)

See Also:


Who Struck John said...

Well, it's way more productive than listening to the news.

Stagflationary Mark said...

Who Struck John,

I'm not sure that's saying much, lol.

Taking a @#$% (pardon my language) is way more productive than listening to the news.

And don't even get me started on what's more productive than listening to Mad Money. ;)

Booyah. Sigh.

Luke Smith said...

Paul Gilbert. That is all.

Mr Slippery said...

OCD OMG FTW! I feel ya, dog.

Troy said...

So sad that millions of people get hooked on empty grinding experiences in WOW, etc.

On the code grinding front, I've already burned out on the DHTML route, that's just not a suitable path to worldwide domination (too weak on mobile, sketchy on desktops, and no visible path to consoles)

So I've jumped back into Mono. Xamarin got $12M last year and they've put tons of work into their offerings, and they're getting almost decent, finally.

Unity3D recently announced that they're partnering with Sony for console and mobile dev, so that's good news on the Mono front, too

I'm happy enough with Mono on the Mac, it seems solid enough now to be my primary target and dev environment (VS needs a ground-up rewrite, LOL).

Man, all these app stores and so little time! Veterans say app stores are too noisy and crap-filled with freemium stuff now.

True, but I'm doing it for the love not money, LOL.

Plan is to KISS this year and see what happens next.

Stagflationary Mark said...

Luke Smith,

I would not consider myself to be a guitar shredder by any stretch of the imagination.

It's not like I can play a given scale with blinding speed (as he can).

It's more of a video game skill with the guitar as the controller. Notes come in fairly random order and I play them as fast as I can. As a long time gamer, that is a skill that I can draw upon. Doesn't make for a good rock concert though, lol.

Stagflationary Mark said...

Mr Slippery,

n00b must PWN B4 becoming 1337! ;)

Stagflationary Mark said...


I sometimes have thoughts of making a very non-KISS game (open ended strategy RPG), but I need to find a lot more love. That would be a major undertaking.

I'm still in burnout mode from my last job. It may never go away. Sigh.

Troy said...

Sketching out the super-duper idea is why I haven't shipped anything after 24 years of owning my own PC . ..

The great thing about taking my time is that the really crufty machines from 3-5 years previously roll off the target matrix, while the tools get better and better. . .

Looking forward to Microsoft's announcement next week. . . hopefully they recommit to a good indie system.

Troy said...

they're stealing my bit!

Game will be crap no doubt, but my O.G. influence is Microprose's Task Force 1942, not that it was much fun per se but they tried hard to make a playable sim of WW2 naval combat.

The entire industry is just dumbing down everything, over and over.

SimCity, Carrier Command, Civ, now even WW2. Gas Powered Games was bought by the World of Tanks people:

"In 2012, Wargaming's revenue was declared to be 217.9 million euros, with net profit of 6.1 million Euro, as declared in an annual report for the Cyprus Stock Exchange. The money gained by Wargaming almost exclusively came from World of Tanks"

gah. GPG's Christ Taylor made Total Annihilation at Cavedog, up by you, then made Supreme Commander I & II.

All 3 of these are certainly realtime strategy games, but not my cup of tea in the slightest. Starcraft, Warcraft, etc -- I hate grinding and all the busy work of too many brain-dead units in too small an operational-scale space.

Ah, I see GPG just ran into the ditch too:

"On Jan 14, 2013, Gas Powered Games announced the Kickstarter project "Wildman", declared to be "An 'Evolutionary' Action RPG"[13] Four days later on January 18, GPG had to lay off roughly 40 employees, with the ultimate fate of the company riding on the Kickstarter campaign.[14] On Feb 11, 2013, Gas Powered Games canceled their Kickstarter project "Wildman", four days before it was due to finish"

Costs to much to make games these days.

For a while, the app stores returned us to the ziploc baggie era of publishing, but that window is closing I guess.

Or maybe not . . .

Stagflationary Mark said...


The entire industry is just dumbing down everything, over and over.

I was reread the rules for Avalon Hill's Submarine game (1976).

It really makes me sad that the era of complex games appears to be not only dying, but dead and buried.

Stagflationary Mark said...


Based on the grammar I just used, I'm feeling pretty dumbed down right now. I am in serious sleep deprivation mode from something I did last night (see next post), lol.

Troy said...

Apparently GPG worked all of 2010 on Kings and Castles and didn't ship. . .

The CEO did a weekly series of videoblogs, each showing the team at work. Interesting to see the tools they're using.

To me, everything needs to be procedural, with very little art assets, for the land, and construction of stuff, and destruction of same.

In games the quality of the destruction is more important than the construction!

That's what makes naval wargames such a nightmare, not the modelling of the ships, but the programming of their blowing up etc.

Avalon Hill

yeah, it seems abandoning the super-slick visuals and going for more of a virtualized paper & dice experience -- taking the actual mechanics of an old-school war-game and executing them as well as possible on a PC, would qualify as KISS-ish.

funny thing here's what in my photoshop right now . . .

(I googled for 'most beautiful wargame' and Devil's Cauldron came up in many results.

There's VASSAL to sortof PCify the game, but that's not good enough.

Several years back I was able to talk a bit with the 2x3 headguy, Joel Billings, of SSI fame. He was working on War in the East at the time.

nice map, but the C3I system was just too damn stiff.

There's a fine line between KISS and crap, my fear of the latter is keeping me Dreaming and not Doing.

Stagflationary Mark said...


I wish I could share the game design for the game I last worked on at my former company.

The project was cancelled after about 18 months of production.

I say I wish I could share the design because we never actually had one (unless one counts the 5 page document* that would apply to every game that's ever been made). It was the game's good looks that kept it going, lol. Sigh.

Well over a million dollars was spent and the designer(s) had never made a game before. The term utterly overwhelmed comes to mind. We were a rudderless ship heading into a hurricane.

I brought up the idea with management that maybe the actual game mechanics should be done well before the graphics are even started, but was asked what I would propose to do with all the artists in the meantime. There were many.

That's just all messed up. It's not hard to see why the company doesn't make games any longer.

* The document's font was large. It was double spaced for reading ease. Two of the five pages were actually duplicates of the other three pages. The document was *very* helpful. Without it, I would not have known if this particular game would actually load and save like many before it, lol. Sigh. I kid you not. It was truly a generic design for every game.

Troy said...

Chris Taylor said the budget of Kings & Castles was $6M.

$100k/yr per head that's 60 man-years.

So if I get started now I'll have it out ca. 2070~

Troy said...


Troy said...

hmm, the Gas Powered Games story is deeper than I thought . . . is a live interview of the CEO talking about the failure of his company.

The 25m mark is interesting.

When I was in Japan, my paycheck was indirectly funded from government stimulus money (I think it went through the prime contractor -- think Honda, etc -- then to us).

We can push trillions to the bankers to keep the real estate ponzi going but people like Taylor making actual exportable wealth, f them, right?

Troy said...

hmm, interesting podcast series:

I've been wasting my time on economics/political BS so much these past 10 years that I've let the entire industry pass me by.

Gotta come back to the light!

C# now has so much interesting plumbing to really create a complex codebase . . . complicated data structures, LINQ to anything, convenient parallelism with async/await, plus even the low end machines have good-enough graphics hardware for pretty involved old-school 2.5D gaming.

And the mono people are driving hard to be the one ring that combines all the platforms -- Mac, IOS, Android, Linux (kinda), Sony's stuff, and of course Windows.

Mono's competition is javascript, and while the javascript community is getting some pretty powerful development functionality (via node.js etc), mono slipstreaming behind Microsoft is pretty ace.

Unless Micros~1 decides to just revert back to C++!

AllanF said...

Hey everyone,

I'm kind of late chiming in here, but it's on topic. ;^) We made the semi-finals of a start-up challenge the city govt was putting on here Portland: link

I'm not very hopeful for the finals. There was an interview step that was lead by a VC type in the stereotypically confrontational style and we weren't into it. But I reckon getting into the semi's gives us something to point to for future purposes.

Oh yeah, the on-topic part... :-) Anyone know any graphic artists looking for a little side-scratch? We parted amicably with our last guy and are looking for a replacement. It's not a huge time commitment. Our app is purposefully low-key. But we need someone that's really strong in icon work and UI.

Kind of a bummer about losing the last guy. He was really good and had a lot of experience. He started out doing game-dev and could probably share a few of his own war stories from 20 years ago. But he has different things going on, and now that we're fully booted up and obviously weren't going to be the next OneHitWonder, decided it was time to give his more interesting hobbies their due. <ahem>


Stagflationary Mark said...


I've been wasting my time on economics/political BS so much these past 10 years that I've let the entire industry pass me by.

Don't even get me started, lol. ;)

Stagflationary Mark said...


We made the semi-finals of a start-up challenge the city govt was putting on here Portland...


AllanF said...

Saw this today. Our interview wasn't as bad, but it wasn't too far off either, especially the Kickstarter bit (WTF!?!).