Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Another Mince Pie anyone ?

Firstly, you may have noticed the name change of this Blog from " Game Making the Home Brew Way " to " Musings of an Oxonian Geek ". The link has also changed, so there will be a trail of broken links, until Google caches the change and everyone gets up to speed.

One of the main reasons for changing the name of the Blog, is because of the content. It's more focused towards general subjects now, other than game development and gaming itself. You may well of noticed the introduction to Lego, both in kits and creative ideas through speed builds, which is not only fun, but interesting too! This has increased over the last few months and will probably be here to stay for the foreseeable future!

This December has been pretty awesome so far with the extra good feeling of being on vacation until almost mid January 2016. Christmas came and went pretty quick, but the days have gone slow, if that makes any sense at all.
Christmas Present Haul 2015
This above is the haul of presents I received for Christmas 2015 with one present to arrive, as it is still to be delivered. The blue Fleece Blankets and other background objects weren't part of the presents, just something Mrs. A and I thrown on the bed during the winter months. Here are some of my favourites, even though all of them were pretty awesome ...
Transformers Autobot Light
Transformers Autobot Light OFF
Transformers Autobot Light ON

The Transformers Autobot Light is powered via USB, either from a PC or power supply with USB Port. The light doesn't pulse or flicker, it's only static, but very cool all the same. This is one of the awesome presents from Mrs. A.
Brickdiction and Brickbuilders Mug
The Brickdiction book and Brickbuilders Mug were from Mrs. A's brother John and family from the USA. They have probably gathered by now, that I am pretty much a fan of the humble brick. The mug is pretty cool with an interaction which will be a must! But care would have to be taken if your favourite beverage is inside the mug. Watch out for spillage!
Lego Mini Fig Obi-Wan Kenobi looks down into the Mug ... It's a long way, way down there!
Every one of my Christmas presents now features a form of Lego, which you may well of noticed and Mrs. A rewarded me with a Star Wars themed kit ...
Clone Commander Cody is an awesome build and is an amazing 23.5 cm tall with the ability of plenty of poses. I think I will try and get a few more Star Wars buildable figures, perhaps Obi-Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader.

Nerd Block :: ( December 2015 ) | Star Wars Trek 
This is the last month for this subscription box, which was for 12 months only. Next year I will be deciding what other boxes I would like to subscribe to and how many. I pay for all of the subscriptions in 2015 and wasn't promoting any in the process. Just in case you were wondering ! :)

Brick Loot :: ( December 2015 ) | Space Fight
Just before we slip into the usual section for Lego, here we have a one month subscription box review of Brick Loot. Which ships from the USA to the UK. It contains genuine Lego and non-genuine brick kits with some extra goodies. I am thinking of subscribing to this box, next year, so let's see what 2016 brings ! :)
Lego :: ( Let's Build )
We have a few models for your delectation this month and seasonal themed one. I have also started to change the way I do speed builds, the method is more layered and is easier to follow. I first building the model and then deconstruct it taking photos along the way. Not only is is easier, but the speed build takes a shorter amount of time.
The Santa and Xmas Tree was quite and interesting build, although I feel that Santa is a little bit delicate in places. I could definitely revise this model and make him more sturdy!
Santa, Xmas Tree and Presents
Now here's a surprise! Mario 8-Bit style from the NES Sprite, but with more 3D depth which I like to add on all my models if I can. It certainly add more character to the build as well and makes it look more interesting.
Mario 8-Bit
One of the most challenging things about this build, was obtaining the Darker Orange, but went for Reddish Brown. Some brick colours are harder or more expensive to come by. But if you are lucky, you will be able to get hold of them either from Lego Pick-A-Brick or Bricklink.
This Space Invader was an extra bonus build which I designed with the Lego Digital Designer. The only thing I would like to change with this one, is the articulated joints. Some of the pieces that formed the articulation, particularly the colour, where hard to obtain. I really liked the stand where the Invader is mounted, quite a neat idea.
Next year, 2016, I am hoping to do a least one speed build a month. I have plenty of ideas and with the aid of the Digital Designer from Lego, it makes design a whole lot easier.

The above are the speed builds for 2015 with the Transformers Autobot Light in the background showing support to the team.

On December 1st, Mrs. A and I visited Stratford-upon-Avon. Whilst there, we paid a visit to WHSmith and saw this book. It was £25 there! I thought about it, but didn't buy it. 

I later found it on Amazon for a cheaper price. The book itself is well documented and even includes a great Classic Space Ship build as well. Thoroughly recommended !

Food Glorious Food ::
With any celebration, comes food, usually, quite a lot! Mrs. A and I made sure of that this year and perhaps went crazy for the quantity of Mince Pies.
To some the Mince Pie is an acquired taste, perfect with a Coffee or Tea or just any accompanying  drink.
The above roast dinner was so nice and with the essential accompaniment of Sprouts which makes no Christmas Meal real really? Don't worry about the prop in the photo, it's not real! Well, let's hope it's not!
I can't leave out this photo of the Yorkshire Puddings, they tasted so good and didn't even deflate when removed from the oven, leaving them crispy and soft inside.

And so, as 2015 rolls up into 2016, I thought I'd leave you with this little gem. Some of you might of heard of Ashens, who has a great and very humorous YouTube channel. He decided to write a book about " Terrible Old Games You've Never Heard Of ", which I found out about from his YouTube channel. The funding for the book was via Unbound. It's a great read and carries much of Ashens personality throughout.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

What's on the Menu and the Blue Danube Meets Manic Miner !

Hooray ! November is here and I particulary like this month, because Mrs. A and I celebrate Thanksgiving. Even though it is not celebrated here in the U.K. I liked the thought of a Roast Turkey meal and a few days off towards the end of November. Mrs. A originally lived and was born in the United States before settling in the United Kingdom.
Roast Turkey with Cranberry Sauce and all the Trimmings

Lovely Yorkshire Puddings
In the Photos above, you can see some of the food that was eaten on our Thanksgiving Day. Yorkshire Puddings are so nice to have with any roast meal, particulary with gravy. Although, if you have too many, they can be quite filling. But so worth having !

Nerd Block :: ( November 2015 ) | Tis' the Season
Quite an impress Block for this month, especially the T-Shirt and 16 month Star Wars Calendar. Yes ! 16 months, the whole of 2016 and then some of 2017 for good measure. The National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation item is so funny !
Lego :: ( Let's Build )
This has been quite a creative month with two models, both are from video games. A golden oldie from the 1980's and a more recent one from my stable. Every model is created with the Lego Digital Designer and is essential if you don't have all those Bricks at hand. Once you are ready, you can always start off by ordering them from the Lego Pick-A-Brick section at Lego Shop Online or from Bricklink. Bricklink will have more rare and hard to find Bricks available !
Manic Miner has to be one of the most loved video game characters of the 1980's. It was one of the first platformer style type of game I played and ironically it was on the birthplace machine, the ZX Spectrum. The gameplay was easy to get into with some levels being more of a challenge ! I am not sure if the programmer Matthew Smith knew at the type how much of an impact the game would have on gamers back in 1983. This classic game was converted to most 8-bit platforms and even the Nintendo GameBoy Advance !
The above video shows the loading sequence and the game. Some of you may also recognise the title screen music ? It is of course The Blue Danube originally by the Austrian composer Johann Strauss. The popular science fiction movie 2001 Space Odyssey also used a composition of The Blue Danube.
From one iconic platformer video game to Bugsy, well ... to me he's iconic and to show my passion and pride, I present to you in Lego form ...
I am really proud of this build, I may modify a few sections here and there, but the overall look is quite pleasing. Normal straight forward, regular Brick builds okay. However, using different types of Brick are more exciting to build with. Once the Bricks are all chosed, you have the colour to worry about next. Some colours are rare, in the terms of cost per Brick. I stumbled across this great Colour Palette website where you can see what a rainbow of colours are available. Reddish Brown seems like a hard to get colour !

Preparing the December Wind Down ::
As December pulls up with it's random changeable weather, I usually prepare for my break for the up and coming holiday season. Our decorated Christmas Tree and some decorations are pretty much up and set. During November I missed out in doing two things I used to do for months, GameDev and a Gameplay. Part of this, is because of distractions in doing other things and allocating time. In early January, I had the urge to buy and play with lots of Lego, this has stayed with me all of this year. It has also opened up a new or buried deep inside my myself, a fascinating creative outlet. To buy a Lego kit is one thing, but to create something new is whole new dimension.
I do have a few goals for next year, one of which is to get back into GameDev and hopefully finish off the two current in progress projects : Office Worker Assault and Barriers. Even if I have to juggle tasks around, it would be nice to get back into the swing of things.
Until next month ...

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Blinky, A Cauldron and some other Ghouls !

Here comes fall ! The Leaves are now carpeting just about everywhere around, although we haven't had any frosty mornings as yet, it has been cold enough to appreciate that autumn is truly here. I don't think I could leave home now without wearing a coat.

The month has been busy in places, but interesting. The pre-order Jurassic World arrived last Sunday via Amazon. I thought it was pretty good, in fact if you watch Jurassic Park and this movie that should be sufficient to cover the storyline from start to finish. For the word, I *LOVE* Dinosaur movies !

Games Played in October ::

Amiga :: ( Amiga Forever ) - Super Cauldron 
For some reason, back in the days of owning an Amiga, I never got around to playing Super Cauldron. Similar and expanded to the original Cauldron from Palace Software. The graphics and sound effects are pretty good, but it feels no where as good as the 8-bit versions in terms of gameplay.

Commodore 64 :: ( C64 Forever ) - Ghosts 'n Goblins
Two years ago, I started recording a mini-series where upon I played a few games on various consoles and computers. None of the games were played in full length, it was just a sample of what was on offer and in addition I had fun at same time. I never did get on the second level !

Nerd Block :: ( October 2015 ) | Tricks and Treats
Although this is a kind of Halloween themed block, I didn't think that there was quite enough related items. The T-Shirt is fantastic and I found out after recording the this video, that it also glows in the dark ! Pretty cool if you are in dimly lit room !

Lego :: ( Let's Build )
Following on from last month's Pac-Man related theme, we have another character from the classic arcade game. Blinky is one of the Ghosts that keeps the player on their toes, in the form of chasing more than anything. This certainly adds quite an edge to the game !

Next month I am hoping to return to the GameDev routine. I have made a few notes about the Menu layout for Office Worker Assault. The Title Screen will be part of it as well with some form of attract mode, which I think all games should have, if they don't already. I have some vacation time towards the end of November and early December, so there should be plenty of time to sort out a few other bits and bobs !

And with that, I leave you some Halloween related photos showcasing the Crochet handy work of Mrs. A and her Poly Juice Potion ...

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Waka ! Waka ! Waka ! Meow ...

And here's autumn ! The mornings haven't been as cold as expected, but the sun and rain have had a good battle in making the weather entertaining. A weather forecast is a norm in my monthly musings and an Umbrella has been required on more than one occasion.

I had a slightly busier month with more thoughts towards gamedev, Office Worker Assault popped up a few times. I think I will try and get back into things very soon and focus on other areas of the game. Perhaps some title screen and menu sections, then an approach back into the main game. At the moment it isn't as complicated as I first thought, it's just a case of what is going to interact with what.

There has been more fun with Lego, bringing some of my designs to life. Each build costs around £5-7 GBP ( excludes postage ) and is variable depending on whether the bricks are old or new. So the more complicated the build, the more it will cost.

Games Played in September ::
There is only one game I've played this month and that is Pac-Man 256 on Android. If only for a few minutes it gives you a buzz all the same. I did find the controls a little awkward at first, but picked up on them after a few plays. It's nice to see Pac-Man played in a different style, from 2D to 3D really works !
Nerd Block :: ( September 2015 ) | Hyperspace
Quite an interesting bunch of items in this month's nerdBlock including a great T-Shirt and Star Wars themed plush toy.
Lego :: ( Let's Build )
This month we have a nice selection of mock, speed builds of popular icons from arcade and computer history. Which are still current and active to this day ! I had a lot of fun building, sourcing, photographing and videoing the results. All of the builds where designed with the Lego Digital Designer from the official Lego website.
The Atari logo is iconic and known by most, if not all gamers and computer fans. My first encounter with Atari was playing Combat on my cousins Atari 2600. The graphics might have looked basic, but the gameplay was so addictive. The cost of parts
How could anyone not know what this logo is from ? The first personal experience in home computing for me was Commodore, from the the age of 13 years. Which seems a long time ago now, but the memories have stayed with me, especially the music ! I think music from the Commodore 64 gave me the passion for Electronic music, more specifically Synthesizer ! Even when I moved on to the Commodore Amiga, the style of music changed only slightly actual Samples from everyday instruments. Even though, the Commodore 64 did use Samples and are still being used today, in demonstration programs and games.
Every gamer in the world must have played Pac-Man at least once in their life. This 3D build of the well known character is how I think it would look in the form of Lego. Everyone would have their own interpretation, but this design uses the basic brick elements from my eyes. It could well be modified and may even have a revision at a later date.
Here is a little bit of what I call, Lego art, entitled " R. G. B. " or just red, green and blue bricks together with a 1x4 plate underneath to give the illusion of slight floating from the base of white background. It's simple and I like it a lot !

With next month being Halloween, I wonder if Mrs. A is going to bake something special ? A few years ago, she made a Cat Litter Tray Cake. It was truly original and did taste nice despite the theme of it !

Monday, August 31, 2015

Scooby Doo, Where are you ?

It's been a fairly quiet month and although I am still on hiatus with gamedev, the break is a welcoming one. I have still thought about projects, potential new and even older ones. This happened when I updated links to my Alex Aris Games website on Wix, of which all of the games now have links from one location, a public Dropbox or open shared link.

As I type today, it's a Bank Holiday and raining ! This is much as a tradition, as it is somewhat a burden, especially when you want to go out and take advantage of the extended weekend if you are lucky enough to have the day off.

British Telecom :: ( Guide to Writing Good Software )
A few days ago, I found a guide amongst some paperwork that British Telecom ( B.T. ) put together to help anyone that wanted to money with their software company, Telecomsoft. This consisted of Rainbird, Firebird and Silverbird Software. It's an interesting read and was sent to me when Phantom - The Mission was submitted to them, but was rejected. One of the reasons why, was because it was designed on the Shoot'em up Construction Kit or S.U.C.K and not S.E.U.C.K according to them !

Games Played in August ::
When you hear the name 'Mario', you instinctively think of the video game character. When I first saw Mario Run on the Commodore C64 Scene Database, I had to check it out. You can move left, right and jump, but the screen is constantly moving, so you have to keep alert !

Nerd Block :: ( August 2015 ) | Summer Mixtape
I was expecting a music related item in this month's nerdBlock and even though there wasn't one, the contents was pleasing, apart from one obscure item ...
Lego :: ( Let's Build )
When I first heard that Lego was going to releasing Scooby Doo several months ago, I found it hard to believe. But it was true and I had to decide which set to get, so I opted for the Mystery Machine, even though I had to wait a few weeks, as it was on backorder from the Lego Shop online. I really liked the build, but found placing the stickers a little bit awkward. The Tree one was touch and go, but it went on without a hitch !

I had another attempt at recording myself building a Lego kit, this time it was a Deep Sea Scuba Scooter. I took some Photos and recorded the Video with my Honor 4X Android Smart Phone, which worked out rather well.

Hopefully for next month, I will able to bring you another MOC build. The Lego bricks have been sourced and I'll taking Photos and recording a speed build Video as well. The clue is ... Gaming !

Wix :: ( Website Designer )
I mentioned earlier, that have I decided to add links to all the games on the Alex Aris Games website using Wix. I realise that there are other links to the games, but now each game has basic instructions and in some cases there is a bundle archive with multi-formats included. For examples : Mac, PC and Ubuntu. Most of the Android games can downloaded from Google Playstore. At some point in the future, I am hoping to have all of the current websites concentrated into one. This makes more sense and would be easier to maintain !

I'll leave everything up to Scooby Doo until next month ...

Friday, July 31, 2015

Hiatus, Space and Did Video really kill the Radio Star ?

This month seems to have been, so very busy ! Just when I thought I had time to do something, the minutes and hours flew by. However, I was still able to do a few things and get some rest at the same time. The rain came at long last, which cooled things down a little with temperatures dropping by just a few degrees making it more comfortable to sleep and do routine things during the day.

There is a nice selection of stuff to read below with a stack of YouTube videos to watch as well, which is always a good thing right ?

I have decided to put all gamedev on hiatus for the short-term, but I am not totally abandoning any current or future projects. With a break, I think I can refocus on 'Assault ( Surreal Office Duties Challenge )' and 'Barriers' without feeling a failure for only spending a few minutes here and there. The blog will continue with goings on from each month and hopefully a spark back into gamedev !

Games Designed from the Past ::
During July, I managed to record some gameplay footage from some of the games I have designed over the last few years with GameMaker. I used Fraps which held up pretty well, although one game didn't run too well, as it wasn't fully compatible with Windows 8.x. Still, with what I was able to record, gives you a taste of the games play like and their overall look.
Elastic Band Warrior is quite a simple game to play and was inspired by a lot of things, including some of the earlier Mastertronic games from the 1980's. The very basic ones with only one screen levels and crazy, if not impossible gameplay !
Coin Mania Remix was my attempt of creating a remake of the original Amiga game from the 1995, but in an isometric style. Without sounding too boastful, I think I did a good job. The collision detection was a little tricky to work out at first, but with the use of masks, everything worked out in the end.
Phantom Millennium was another remake, this time it was from the original Commodore 64 game, 'Phantom - The Mission'. I thought it was farily close to the original gameplay, even though the graphics and titles were obviously different in areas. The gameplay recording was from an old Windows Vista Laptop and appears slow in places. This does not reflect truthfully on the actual game and runs perfectly well, but not so good on Windows 8.x due to some random compatibility issue.

Games Played in July ::
For a while now, I have heard of DOSBox, but never used or quite understood how it works. So, I took it upon myself to find out, even if it meant playing around with the settings for a few minutes. Although, the use of this x86 Emulator may seem a little controversial for it can play older PC games with some CD-ROM access disabled on them. It was still worth a go ! I managed to get Xenon 2, Doom and a partly working version of my first ever PC game owned, Screamer working. I was really impressed !

Nerd Block :: ( July 2015 ) | Humanity's Last Hope
I really liked this month's selection of items, including a Buffy the Vampire Slayer Vinyl figure and an intriguing Ghostbusters Wallet made from a special type of paper. Which to be honest, I couldn't really work out !

Lego :: ( Let's Build )
Purely by chance I came across a Lego mini build set on eBay and for the amazing price of £4.99 ( including shipping ), I was able to get myself a Space Shuttle.
Being a mini build, there is usually less than 50 bricks ? Which shouldn't take too much time at all to construct for a novice or expert.

For the first time ever, I decided to record myself building a Lego kit and what a place to start, the Space Shuttle mini build. I think I did pretty well and learnt how to speed up a section of the video as to playback at a faster rate and show the initial build in a shorter time. This would be particularly useful with longer or more detailed build.
I don't have a massive Lego collection, but I do own enough to be happy with and it's nice to pull out a box now and again and build. The Creator series is good example of this !

Even though I appeared to be short of time in areas during this month, I certainly didn't get bored at all. Music always surrounds me with my favourite decade being the 1980's ! Although, I really do like computer music and synth melodies. Cue Commodore 64 overload !
A classic game called Finders Keepers by Mastertronic with fantastic music by David Dunn. I never completed the game itself, but loved the music as I played along.

You have to ask yourself though ... " Did Video really kill the radio star ? "

It's nearly time to leap into August, until next time ...

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Staycation !

Blazing June ! The rain might cool things down, then the glorious sun heats everything up again. With temperatures hitting upto 30c, the fans are blowing and cold drinks are a plenty ! I have been hit by Hayfever pretty hard this year and have had to turn to taking Antihistamines again. It's the itchy eyes and running nose that bugs me the most, with the sneezing a close second.

This month hasn't been too bad, I've felt more tired than of usual, but still found the motivation to do things even if some of the tasks have been left to the last minute. Setting up tasklists really does work and as I've mentioned before, sometimes when start working through a list, you sometimes find you'll complete the everything on it.

Assault ( Surreal Office Duties Challenge ) ::
What seems to be the longest time in history with progress, I actually pixelled a bit of furniture, which should start making an appearance during next months gamedev. So, for the moment we have an early version of a desk and chair with no other office equipment on it, not even a pencil !
This with other styles of office furniture, will be scattered on both levels. There maybe some interaction where you can move a chair, but for now we'll have to see how things turn out. I need to work out how many doors and windows are needed as well. It will be a nice idea to have a passcard system to gain entry to some of the rooms or areas. No theres an idea ! 

Games Played in June ::

Commodore 64 :: ( C64 Forever )
It's time to hit the emulator again and the key game for this month is Ghost'n Goblins Arcade brought to you by Nostalgia. This rework, if you like to call it that, is based on the original release of Ghost'n Goblins by Elite. This is an excellent attempt at squeezing in all of what the arcade offered, but alas I can't get off level one without cheating !

Nerd Block :: ( June 2015 )
This month's Nerd Block theme was 'British Invasion', containing Dr. Who, Mr. Bean and Monty Python items. Great stuff !
Lego :: ( Let's Build )
Coming in contact with Lego bricks has become a regular thing for me since December last year and even more so now. The desire grew more during January and now each month, I try and pick up a few bricks and build. If pocket money permits, I'll buy a new set or dig out a previously purchased one and build it again. I think the Creator series is good, as each set usually has three different models to make or you can use your imagine and have a go at building a design to your own liking.

During June I bought an old Legoland Car and Caravan set from 1973 via a Bricklink seller. Bricklink is a great site where you can buy and sell Lego, either in single or multiple brick form or sets and instructions etc. There are many sellers across the world, so this way of getting Lego is a good alternative to using eBay or other online stores.
With a bit of help from the amazing Lego Digital Designer, I was able to create a hommage to this 40 year old set. The only problem I encountered, was that the ID for certain bricks had changed in some circumstances, so when it came to sourcing bricks, I had to make sure the search criteria was correct. I bought 95% of the bricks from Pick-A-Brick, part of the Lego Store and a few other bricks from Bricklink.
I am quite pleased with the overall result and plan to do a version 2 of this model at some point. Perhaps I can make the Car and Caravan big enough for a Lego mini-figure ? I think that would be pretty neat ! The cost of the bricks was about £9 with a little more added for postage. If the set was available online or in the shops, it would be probably the same price.

Commodore is Awesome :: ( CIA )
A few weeks ago, 6th June to be exact, Kitty from the Commodore is Awesome group on Facebook, asked whether anyone wanted to contribute towards the CIA sites with either childhood rambles or maybe game reviews. I contacted Kitty and submitted an article entitled 'Where it all began'. Although the submission was a bit short, it brought back even more memories and those of when I owned a Commodore Amiga. Both the Commodore 64 and Amiga encouraged a lot of creativity, as well as gaming.
I also got inspired to design a logo for CIA, using CharPad by Subchrist Software. This neat piece of software allows you to design Sprites, Characters and Backgrounds within a PC environment then export them to a format of choice, including Commodore.
The style is similar to the Ocean software logo and uses just the normal two set colours and one changeable for each 8x8 character, plus ofcourse the background colour.

Wix :: ( Website Designer )
I stumbled across a very cool online website designer this month, it's called Wix ! It truely is an amazing site giving you the capability of putting together website with no HTML coding experience. I am hoping to eventually migrate all of my websites or two, to one soon. As a test to myself, I spent a couple of days, just by spending a few minutes here and there to create an Alex Aris Games site.
The website covers most of what games there are available with a softography going right back to 1988/9 where it all began.
Staycation ::
It's where you mostly stay at or are nearby home. I have another few days off soon, eight glorious working days to be exact. I'll be able to catch up on some sleep, get some fresh air, do a bit of gamedev and all the usual other activities that roll with it. But never forgetting to get the laundry done as well ! I am guessing they'll be some late nights in there somewhere to add to the mix !

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Self Preservation Society

Here we are almost bouncing out of May and into June which was mostly about building. I have to confess that I did less gamedev this month than I originally planned to do. I set myself some task lists and completed all of them, but kept them short.

I found a bug in Bump, which crashed the game when the counter reached zero. This fix was rolled for Android, but I am not sure it has affected other platforms. The problem occurs when a non-existent named object is deactivated or attempted to be. I will try and get this fixed for PC and Ubuntu, as far as I can remember, Bump wasn't released on MAC.

Assault ( Surreal Office Duties Challenge ) ::
Very little was done this month, which disappoints me to a degree. However, one of the larger tasks is coming up and that is the graphic design for the background tiles with the two large play areas. I worked a little on the main player sprite and edit it to a more desired design.
Over the coming weeks, I will make a start on the tiles and background objects like furniture ( i.e tables and chairs ). I am sure it won't too long until you'll see the main character shooting the heck out of Zombies and the like !

Games Played in May ::

Ridge Racer ( PS Vita ) ::
I first played Ridge Racer on a Playstation back in the 1990's and loved the game to bits. I can remember the cornering being a little tight, but if you managed to brake and turn you could easily drive at speed to save on time. This version for the PS Vita is nicely polished and great racing game !
Subscription Boxes ::

Nerd Block :: ( May 2015 )
This month's Nerd Block theme was Ani-May ( Anime ) and contained some great items, including a Funko Pop! Vinyl figure and great T-Shirt from Shirt Punch.

Lego :: ( Let's Build )

Creator Mini Cooper  ( 10242 ) ::
Most of us have seen the film original film The Italian Job starring Michael Caine, Noel Coward and Benny Hill amongst most of the actors. To me the most impressive role or part was of the Mini ! When I saw this model on the Lego website, I turned Sofa over and shook it a few times and ordered kit. I have to say it is the best model I have ever built with Lego, which took about five hours with a break for lunch. I only wish the front wheels could be steered, but apart from that, it's great !

The prices do vary for this model, Lego and Amazon differ. To some it's a lot of money, but to date I think of the amount of bricks and theme justifies the cost of £74.99. Just wait until it becomes a rarity, the prices will be ridiculous !

I have noticed on eBay you can buy extra sets of stickers for specific models. I think this is a good idea if you want a spare set or wish to part with your model and sell it complete at a later date. Stickers are a bit of a bind, but they do add character to a final build.

Here comes summer ...

Next month brings the yearly Tennis tourmenent at Wimbledon. Players from a over the world compete and to watch even a few minutes of a match is enough to leave you  on the edge of your seat. Although, by tradition rain sometimes stops play or matches go into play towards early evening. I wonder if Andy Murray will do well this year ?

Hopefully, next month there will be a bit more progression with gamedev. Which brings me on the subject of game I designed back in 2009 called Lightbulb Luke. I successfully managed to do a play through video this month and complete the game without cheating. Over the coming months, I am planning to do more videos. It is always interesting to see what ideas I had years ago and seeing the game in action.