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  • PixelBlitz – First 2009 Update, lots of new toys and shmup test 1

    PixelBlitz Engine Update This evening I managed to find time to push a lot of updates through for PixelBlitz. This fixes some serious bugs that I introduced last year when trying to optimise the speed of the renderer. It also brings in new methods in the BlitzMath class (my favourite being the excellent wrapValue() function!), the new Box2D Physics classes (lots more on this to come) and the starting classes for BlitzGrid, BlitzDraw and BlitzWorld.

    More importantly I’ve started putting the examples source code into Google Code, which I’ve tested and it all compiles against this latest build. So far all of my demos from last year are converted and working, including this new little Shoot-em-up Test. Use the cursor keys to move and control to fire. Firing doesn’t actually do anything, you can’t die, the aliens can’t die either, but I think it shows the potential speed a PixelBlitz game can have, and I’m not even starting to push it yet.

    Get the latest release from Google Code including the rough and ready source for the demo game above, you’ll see the start of the new Collision Group system in there, which I’ll be evolving this year.

  • Top Bun soars over Christmas period

    Back in early December we released a Wallace and Gromit game called Top Bun. It was a blatant promotion for the film that was on BBC 1 on Christmas day. Even so, it was a really quality game too – with some lovely designs and coding work. We seeded the game ourselves, partnering up with some large portals like Candystand, and it was incredibly well received.

    The ratings and comments from the Newgrounds players totally stunned me. I was expecting it to get a bit of a hammering there, but instead it had over 80,000 plays, carried a solid 4.05 rating for several weeks (now dropped down), won a Daily Feature award and has 142 reviews (mostly positive). Quite stunning.

    Kongregate actually gave us more plays, but the kids there were far less favourable towards, as the comments show. I think they’re just too young / American to appreciate W&G.

    Thanks to Jameson (CEO of Mochi) he pushed the game out via their Mochi Distribution network, which we thank him for eternally (as the game doesn’t actually carry any Mochi adverts). We used a Mochibot for tracking and the new Mochi Leaderboard 2.0 for the highscores / challenges. Both of these worked superbly and allowed us to track with great accuracy the travel of the game across the web. Oh and how it has travelled! Over 600 unique hosts carry it and in less than 1 month it has clocked up 2.1 million plays. Of course activity has dropped down now, but we’re still seeing a solid 30k to 40k plays per day. As a result traffic to our sites and especially to our YouTube channel increased by several hundred percent. All in all, a total success especially given the very short time we had to build the game in.

  • Abombinaball Fix

    A keen Abombinaball player emailed to say that level 22 of the game was impossible. I checked it out and sure enough he was right! There were two missing blocks that were essential to completing the level. I have fixed this in the version spread via Mochi, and also hosted on Newgrounds and Kongregate. I also sent new XML files to the sites that sponsored the game, so hopefully this won’t be a problem any longer. Sorry about that! Just incase you’re playing an “old” version of the game, the password for Level 23 is “AFRICA”.

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