Game Development Category
17th Sep 2014
Back in 1999 I started using a language called DarkBASIC. As its name implies it was a version of the BASIC language sitting on top of DirectX and pimped out with lots of great 2D and 3D features. Coding in DarkBASIC looked something like this:ActionScript12345make object sphere a,50texture object a,1scale object a,x,y,zposition object a,6*a,20,-15point object a,20,30,20
As you can see, it’s easy to read and understand. And honestly, it was great fun! I was utterly hooked.
At the time nothing much really existed on the PC for easy game making. Sure, there were some “click and drag” style tools. But if you wanted to code in anything other than C++ your options were limited to say the least. And if you wanted to use a language that was specifically for making games, your options were even smaller.
The big two of the day were DarkBASIC, created by Dark Basic Software (who later renamed to The Game Creators), and Blitz Basic, created by Blitz Research. Both companies are still going today, but back then the competition between them and their users was fierce! To be fair, Blitz had the upper hand both in the elegance of its language and performance, having been born from the equally powerful Blitz Basic on the Amiga. Where as DarkBASIC was more like AMOS from the Amiga, both in its syntax, ease of use and style of marketing. This was no mistake as the founders of Dark Basic Software worked at Europress and were instrumental in the publishing of AMOS. As a result, DarkBASIC utterly thrived.
7th Aug 2014
We’re in need of an experienced freelance digital project manager / producer to help our studio run smoothly. The work will include: daily direct client liaison, helping write schedules and proposals, and managing our remote development and art teams. We anticipate this taking up approximately 1 – 2 hours of a day, each day, so is not a full-time position. The key to this role is being able to help out daily but in small chunks of time.
You will work from your own home/office, but must live in the UK. You will be willing to travel for occasional client meetings, and dial in to weekly conference calls. Experience of web game production would be a massive bonus, but we’re happy to consider any digital production experience. We’re a small team working on some really cool projects – from our game framework to our contract games. The work is varied and if you’re a gamer (of any level!) then so much the better
If you feel you can whip our chaotically busy but massively talented studio into shape, then please send details of your experience and rates to firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me @photonstorm. Or pass this on to anyone you may know who would be suitable for the role.
23rd Apr 2013
It’s no secret that for nearly 2 years we’ve run a private business forum for HTML5 game developers. On it we listed all the portals and sponsors we dealt with and our experiences in doing so. So far we’ve got 32 portals added, all of them known to have bought games in the past.
Since launching the HTML5GameDev forums though it no longer made sense to keep that information under lock and key. I didn’t want to support two forums and two communities either. So I have merged all the sponsor details from the private forum into the public one, for all devs to benefit from.
Because the posts contain email addresses they are not visible unless you are an active forum member. By active that means you have an account on the forum and have been taking part in discussions. Therefore you must have a positive post count to be allowed access to the sponsor board. But once in you’re welcome to take advantage of this significant resource and hopefully contribute towards it too.
8th Jan 2013
2013 is certainly well under way now. Christmas and New Years are all but a distant memory and I suspect all of us are now deep back in to our work. Although we enjoyed a brief spell away from the office it’s full steam ahead here right now.
I intended to write a summary of what 2012 meant for Photon Storm, but if I had to sum it up in one single word it would be: independence. 2012 was the year we went from being busy, hard working, full-time employees to being mentally busy, hard working, full-time-and-then-some but working for ourselves. And what a roller coaster of a ride it has been.
We took the concious decision to break away from Flash entirely and focus 100% on HTML5 games, specifically running in the mobile web browser. It was always meant to be a mixture of making our own games / IP, doing client work and collaborating on Kiwi, the HTML5 game framework we’re deeply invested in. In an ideal world those three elements would balance out quite evenly. Of course the reality is that client work sucked up a huge majority of our time – this is in no way a bad thing of course, given the current economic climate we are in no way complaining about having lots of work on the books, but it did present challenges to a company so small that we hadn’t anticipated tackling quite so soon.
23rd Nov 2012
A quick summary of what’s going on right now:
First of all we’re happy to be one of the judges in the Realtime xRTML 3 contest that is now running. As their name implies Realtime provide some very smart web tech for real time push based messaging. This has massive application in HTML5 based multiplayer gaming. From a simple shared cursor experience to a proper full-on game. There are plenty of code examples on their site – and don’t be put off by the ‘enterprise’ focus either, the free tier has plenty of room to power a popular online game.
Talking at the BBC Fusion Games Summit
I’m pleased to be talking at the BBC Fusion Games Summit next week. I’ll be covering some of the stark realities of building for the mobile web and things to take into consideration when commissioning or pitching for HTML5 game projects. Although my talk is sold-out, if you’re attending the event then please come and say hello!
Sign-up for the Kiwi.js launch
We are getting increasingly close to a release of Kiwi.js, our HTML5 game framework built specifically for mobile browsers. It would be great if you could sign-up on our launch site and help to spread the word. The moment it goes live you’ll be first to know and we may even be throwing in some special offers too
My onGameStart presentation is up on Vimeo
Back in September I gave a talk at onGameStart about making money from your HTML5 games. The talk was called ‘Insert Coin to Continue’ and much to my dismay they filmed it all and put it online So feel free to watch me nervously trying to explain how to get your game sponsored. Despite my obvious nerves in public speaking the feedback I’ve had has been great, so it was worth it! Of course you should also check out the rest of the great videos, especially Rendering Voxel Worlds by Jonas Wagner, if only to see his priceless reaction when his brand new MacBook Pro falls off the lecturn
Storming Christmas Cards
We just had a bunch of company Christmas cards printed (by the ever excellent moo.com) featuring a cute new piece of pixel art by Ilija. We’ve had more printed than we need to send to clients and don’t want the rest to go to waste. So drop me a line with your name and postal address, and tell us what your all-time favourite game is (and why). Come December we’ll shove one into the mail for you, subject to quantity!
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