Monthly Archives: March 2012

Rustbucket: The Last Stand

The drummer is on fire.

Last night I went to see Rustbucket and stayed for a bit of the main act Soldier at The King Billy in Northampton.

The occasion was important because it was actually Rustbucket’s last gig together.

The gig went great, and played some songs I had never heard played live before, one of which is above, It was really interesting seeing and hearing the change in the style of music from the start with “Beer Metal” and its kin which where much more light hearted to these new songs, songs of both era’s where well played by everyone of the musicians.

 

As I said this was the last Rustbucket gig and at the end it was slightly strange, In the end they chose to end on the song they first played live, the one and only (and much crowd-sought) “Beer Metal”.

The video above is that actual first performance.

I hope that everyone who was involved keep up the awesome!

On a lighter note I discovered that the lead singer/bassist reads my blog, awesome, thanks Pete!

Here’s a shot of the main act of the night “Soldier” who are a band from the 80’s sporting that old fashioned Heavy Metal (Iron Maiden-esque), they where pretty good, sadly I don’t think being stood so close to that PA has done my hearing any good.

"Run too the hills!"

 

Sorry for the lack of words, think I made up for it with the pictures, Off to see Joe Bonamassa tomorrow so expect another musically themed update in the coming days.

Russ out!

Full Disclosure: The guitarist on the right is my brother =D.

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Programming on my Netbook

I have seen a lot of people saying lots of bad things about programming on Netbook, in my experience with my Lenovo S205 I’m constantly astounded, Visual Studio loads quickly, everything i’ve done on it so far has worked like a dream, during Three Thing Game I had the thing running for 24 hours straight, on dual screens, with Visual Studio, Zune, Chrome ( a few tabs) and multiple instances of Inkscape and it handled it like a champ. add to this the maneuverability of a netbook and the thing is a little programming beasty, also the keyboard is a dream to type on, my only niggle is that the screen kinda blasts colours out a bit too much which makes drawing on it a bit of a problem (hence the second screen).

 

I guess the moral of the story is that It depends highly on the hardware. =D

 

p.s. this post isn’t directly aimed at Matt’s post, but more as a counter argument from the other side. =)


RunDead Studios

Now the whole RunDead crew are on the blogosphere, it feels right to make a post mention (read: shamelessly plugging) each blog. So here goes,

RunDead Studios is made up of 3 people, Me,  John van Rij and finally Alex Rodgers.

Actively working to dispel the programming in a darkly lit room myth.

RunDead has already embarked upon one project, the previously stated “Shear Carnage” which we are hoping to release onto the Windows Phone Marketplace very soon!

Russ out!


A sheer awesome weekend that resulted in…. Shear Carnage!

I hope Alex doesn't notice the lack of a shadow in this logo...

It Has a logo and everything!

So this weekend Me, John and Alex took part in “Three Thing Game”. This is a Game Development competition ran at The University of Hull, the competition is held over a week with the main focus being on a 24 hour mammoth development session on Saturday.

Our Three "Things" after the auction.

We started the week with a “Three Thing Auction” in this auction each team had 530 “money” to bid on the “things” that they wanted, we took a somewhat brave course of action and bid all our money on the first “blank” thing that came up, this mean that we  could choose one of the things that our game was based on, In our minds this basically reduced the amount of things we needed to fit to 2, rather luckily we got “firework” and “high dive” as the other two things. Pretty much straight from that point we had the idea for a game based around the old school game “Missile Command” this pretty well fit our things well, our blank turned into “Sheep” pretty soon after and from then on we we just had to worry about implementation.

Actively working to dispel the programming in a darkly lit room myth.

The first Dev session.

The game is about destroying an onslaught of sheep that are trying to eat your grass (the last remaining grass in the post-apocalyptic-sheep ravaged world no less) using fireworks. There will be plenty of blood, I can assure you.

We started development with pretty much a day of work over at John’s house where we worked out what we wanted to do and the best way we should do it, and then we gave out tasks for each of us to do and got busy, The logo above was done that first day. Through out the week work continued and going into the 24 hour session we had (the extremely helpful) Particle Emitter, Firework Control and sheep movement functioning in some capacity within the game, Just needed to finalize the base game and then working on making it feel good.

Then came an awesome 24 hours filled with lots of hilarity provided by Danny, Rob and Nick, lots of Pizza and an awesome atmosphere provided by everyone involved!

That little Netbook is surprisingly powerful

My humble setup.

Much of the final game went in during the final hours including A lot of art assets, sound, Power-ups (a laser that acts as a barrier to protect your grass, and a rapid fire mode that increases firework fire speed for five seconds), Social Network integration and a host of other great stuff.

John's mammoth setup!

At 9:30am on Sunday the contest finished and judging began, after we had been judged we took a chance to go and take a look at a few of the other great entries (Sorry we didn’t get to everyone!). Soon after this we where informed we had made it to the final 9 (of 33), this made me (and the other guys i’m sure) feel ecstatic. We had a lot of the other teams play our game and we had an awful lot of compliments which was brilliant, in the final 9 we made a 5 minute presentation to the judges and (to most) of the rest of the participants about our game. This was incredibly nerve-racking as I’m truly terrible at public speaking and presentations, but thankfully Alex and John took over and pulled off an excellent presentation.

makes mine look like a toy.

Alex's trooper of a machine.

Then came a short (it felt like years) deliberation period by the judges, and after that they came back and the top three were announced,

We came second!

This was brilliant,  I’t was much better than my wildest dreams and is something I can use as motivation for  a long time to come!

Our game came second to a beautiful and imaginative game by an incredible duo of Christophe and Rob or “The Infamous Two Sirs”,

The games were judged by a panel mostly from the University, but there was Stuart Lovegrove of SCE Studio Liverpool . A developer from the industry who has worked on titles such as the Wipeout franchise and some of the FIFA games to mention a few, he (and the other judges) said that they loved our game and just wanted to play it again. To have a seasoned industry professional and members of the Computer Science teaching faculty say they loved your game is a brilliant feeling to say the least.

So a truly awesome weekend I must say, I just can’t wait for the next Three Thing Game now though! also sleep is highly underrated.

We hope to have Shear Carnage up on the Windows Phone Marketplace soon.


So i’ve finally taken the plunge..

Yep, finally gotten around to making my web presence known, finally gotten around to entering the verifiable maelstrom of Blogging,  finally gotten around to “Building the brand” as Danny would exuberantly express.  and one thing I have to say to this somewhat delightful point is:

And why not?

Why not indeed, well the reason that I am is to give you brilliant readers an insight in to my life, mainly this blog will be about Computer Science, Video Games and music, but there is always room for some deviation I assure you.

 

Thank you to John, Danny, Rob and all you other brilliant people who convinced me to start blogging!

 

So prepare for some (hopefully) interesting content, some badly taken photographs, and hopefully a lot of humour, I hope you enjoy the ride!

Thanks for reading.


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