Shit I’ve been neglecting this….

In a word, yes.

Been struggling with motivation and large black dogs pretty much continuously since July-ish. Starting to get beyond a joke.

I went away on holidays for a while back in September and had a fantastic time. I remember being completely flat and only just falling over the line in the lead up to the hols, and then after relaxing and unwinding while I was away, coming back to work and after two days being more depressed than what I was when I left. That wasn’t how it was supposed to work. I’m starting to wonder whether I should burn some savings and take a sabbatical from working for a while until I can get my head together. The whole working a job for the next 20 years thing is really getting me down to the point of where almost anything else is a more attractive option at the moment. I need to figure out whether that’s a viable option or whether it’s just the usual ‘if you change something, things will have to get better’ but will turn out just to be different things to get depressed about. And then get more depressed because one more thing that was supposed to make me feel better didn’t and that list is only getting shorter.

Anyway, enough sooking. Shit tins of people are worse off than me. One of the things that is really frustrating is that I know I really have nothing to be depressed about. Life is actually pretty damn good. If only my stupid brain would figure that out and stop bugging me with this crap.

Blue Mountains. Yep, great fun and was beautiful. Took a lap around Bathurst as well. Need to post some pics.

Bathurst - Down the Mountain

Wentworth Falls Looking Up

I completed Nick’s Alien Aggressors XNA tutorial and found it to be great value. I was intending to write a review post but only got as far as a heading and an embedded video. Here’s the video. No sound because I couldn’t get the capture software to recognise my sound device. Also gotta give a shout out to George’s The State of Things tutorial that gave me a grounding on dealing with game states.

Keen students of Nick‘s tutorial will notice that I switched out the artwork for my own. I also did the same for sound effects and omitted background music. Because I hate background music in games unless the game is GTA: Vice City.

Anyway, the current step in my ‘learn how to implement all the game concepts in XNA that I need to understand so I can write the game I really want to write’ process is to create a really simple game without the help of any tutorials. So I’m re-creating Pong in my own image. Hopefully it will be done in the next week or so, so I can post another vid. It’s ‘functionally complete’ for 2 human players, but I still need to create the game over condition, implement AI for the computer player, add some sounds and a little controller rumble. I also have a bounding box collision based bug where the ball can get ‘stuck’ inside the bat given certain conditions that I need to fix.

I’m off to see Hulk Hogan & Ric Flair on Saturday night, so hopefully that’s good. I’m looking forward to it :)

Also in the process of putting together a new PC, targeting Windows 7 as the OS. Purchased so far:

  • Case – Cooler Master ACTS 840 Full Tower,
  • Power Supply – Cooler Master Silent Pro M700
  • Processor – Intel i7 860
  • RAM – 8GB Kit, Corsair C8 1600
  • Motherboard – Gigabyte GA-P55-UD6
  • Graphics – Asus 4890 (ATI Radeon chipset)
  • DVDRW – Pioneer Sata
  • El crappy KB & Mouse (I will get a decent wireless setup in the long run, but haven’t decided which yet, so will use the cheapo ones for the build)

Before I start the build, I still need to get a new monitor and system drive. For the system drive I was tossing up between a WD Velociraptor (150GB) and a Crucial SSD (128GB), but I couldn’t find a supplier in Oz, and they’ve jumped up to¬† about $450USD anyway. Then I was thinking out 2 ‘raptors in RAID 0 to get the extra speed. But I’ve figured if at some point the blistering fast SSDs become available and cheaper in this part of the world, then I’ll just swap it out. I’m looking at picking up those 2 items this week and then start the build.

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