Leon's Microblog – January 2018

*reads a 2D Javascript game engine API* "Hmm… it sure likes to talk about how game objects "eventfully update" their "views" when the player changes their "values"… W-WAIT A SECOND–" *yanks off brass plate reading "Game Engine" revealing "MVC Framework" underneath* "NOOOOOOO
"So much separates us from the sun's light… the clouds in the sky, the human fleets on the surface, the immense schools flowing above, and the drifting leviathans we scuttle beneath."
Mysteriously intact ancient office tower called "the Southern Blastlands Ghostcube" to be exorcised by a team armed with reconstructions of ancient fire drill sirens
I've been feeling ill from sleep dep and programmer-block all day and the only thing tethering me to this world is the Well Well Well Would You Look At This video
I haven't played Iconoclasts but I'm worried that it's another Owlboy: plot-driven adventure platformer, hyper-detailed pixel art, many years in the making, but – without sufficient narrative chops – vanishing from memory after a month.
Me, right now, live from Leon HQ: "I just can't get over how Star Trek named the robot "Data"… it's like if a human was just called "Bones"."
Where's the golf variation where you can just shake the world like a pinball machine to assist in sinking putts
Where's the golf variation where you can just keep whacking the ball and it still counts as one stroke as long as you can catch up with it before it stops moving
Rejected action-adventure items found on the shelf above the toilet: – Grappling hook, but instead of hard objects it only grips the surface of water – Stick that, if it senses it's about to be set on fire, launches itself in the other direction – Skeleton key that can only lock
The main character's voice carries this comic… The first chapter has two whole pages of her infodumping about sports mecha pilots while flipping through their nudes in a porn magazine, and is one of the most enchanting sequences I've read in a while.
(Content warning for occasional slurs, and occasional nudity.)
http://seriousengineering.webcomic.ws/ – This comic is just astonishing… this story about an impoverished teen and a parasitic tech startup is suffused with faint hope and sheer dread all the way through.
https://www.daisyblackwood.com/ – I'm fond of this 40s-style adventure comic… the protagonist and authorial voice is pragmatic more than proud, and the plots after the first one tend away from haggard colonial/Lovecraftian tropes.
I also rewatched Unedited Footage Of A Bear and was reminded that it ruins itself with these awful prolongued jokey disclaimers, which should've gone away after the third. (Content warning for three more suicide mentions than it needed.)
I watched This House Has People In It but found the execution a bit too silly, the characters' panic a bit too deliberately zany, to take it that seriously.
99 coins brain: Where's Wapeach 1up brain: Daisy is Wapeach 3up brain: Captain Syrup is Wapeach Emulator save states brain: Wapeach is obviously short for "wolf peach"
http://sakana-comic.com/ – This sitcom comic has a bit of a slow start but ramps up as the amusing relationship complexity increases, until it's switching between different relationship tensions plenty of times in a scene. Also, the expressions are good at selling the moments.
I'm a big fan of how these speedrun level variants are introduced: multiple rule-changes explained succinctly and wordlessly. Contrast with the multiple UI popups for Galaxy's numerous Prankster Comets.
The zany part is that the game itself primes you to notice this second iteration solution by having an entire previous chapter centered around just walking backwards.
Clam brain: The Beginner's Guide is real Geoduck brain: The true meaning of TBG is realising years later that you can apply the Solution to the Puzzle twice over, and close the exit door behind you and not just the entrance door.
I'm now moving on to Celeste.
"Stop! This is a bacterium speaking, but I've taken control of my host by channeling the prayers of every organism inside her! And I warn you–" *strand of snot drips from host's nose onto katana* "–the hopes of a hundred million microbes will defeat you!"
"God…" *scrolls down real estate listing* "I just have to haunt this place after I'm dead."
"Yeah I've played EarthBound 2. Secret Japan-only prototype. You get the Pencil Obliterator in that one."
In Galaxy 2, you can flip them at your leisure, and only when you want to. In the 3D series, however, you always swap them the moment you jump – you must be fully committed every time you leave ground. Astounding.
Here's a hilariously sharp contrast between the Galaxy games and 3D Land: these reactive swapping tiles seem similar but are actually completely different between the games – forgettable in the former, brilliant in the latter.
Lack of flight brings the tail's value back down toward the other powerups, though it's still overpowered – enemies are much less imposing in 3D than 2D, and there are far more pits and chasms than spinies.
The absence of freeform flight, while shocking to those awaiting the tanooki tail's return, is a very wise decision: even in SMB3 and SMW, flight was overwhelming. (Less so in the former, where you couldn't farm powerups; inarguable for the latter.)
*remember's that Cave Noire literally does have a Goblet Grotto which you can't beat unless you fill your entire inventory with completely useless goblets* All games are one all games are one all games are one
Do you ever spend long periods of time thinking about how Wario's original sprite in Super Mario Land 2 is basically just Elf Wallace
h e double hockey sticks *scribbling and erasing noises* ahegao double peace signs
One thing I dearly love, though, is the "skip level?" prompt item is The P-Wing, which feels simultaneously like a jab at the original SMB3 item, and an incisive argument that skipping levels has always been in the series, and this is neither new nor controversial.
Current gripe with this game is NOT with the Golden Tanooki Suit in general, but just with the fact that often I'll really want a tail to get a star coin, and find it easiest to just die a few more times to get this one instead of leaving the level.
If The Official Yume Nikki Sequel Doesn't Let You Transform Madotsuki's Head, I'm Transforming My Own Head Into The DK Bongo Controller So I Can Instead Play Jungle Beat With My Forehead Slaps
When did THIS become hotter than THIS
Just felt like an oddly large cultural footprint – a new, visually unique science-fiction environment trope – for a work that, while unsurprisingly visionary, isn't really talked about quite as breathlessly as Miyazaki's later works.
So, um, is every single 80s-90s videogame with a gray powdery fungus death forest specifically invoking Nausicaä, or is there perhaps an even earlier referent
Crouch-sliding served a unique purpose, but was always a finicky maneuver assembled from Mario's physics. Replacing it with a designed move – and only NOW, so long after the original – feels like a more incisive re-examination of SMB1 than most moves added by the actual sequels.
I'm surprised to learn, in spite of Odyssey's already considerable design debt to this game, that Mario's ubiquitous forward-roll in Odyssey originates from here too – and exists specifically to idiomatically replace crouch-sliding through one-block gaps.
Livetweet thread for the game Super Mario 3D Land:
Still my favourite attract mode music.
"After scoring the top result for "what is a majin" and farming two thousand cryptocoins from visitors, the culprit was last seen riding a jailbroken self-driving car to a Mediterranean mountain villa that, due to various 19th-century treaties, is legally part of Antarctica."
*sudo npm installs a package without checking if it's safe* "Now I know what you're thinking, but relax: if it turns on my webcam–" *zoom out to reveal I am fully nude* "–I just tap these dominos, which push the switchblade, cutting the rope suspending the watermelon over my PC."
http://animatedscreenshots.tumblr.com/post/169972325253/mother-3 – I tried to roll as many of these as possible, and if there's a twelfth I'm gonna be sore.
Remember watching a rented DVD, and then watching it all over again with the commentary track just so you could "get your money's worth" and you didn't enjoy it the first time, but at least the second time provided the illusion of sharing the experience with friendly company
Remember the universal childhood experience of finding two videos you wanted to rent and then throwing in three more that might be good so you could get the "5 for $10" deal and some of those other three were OK, and others were Pluto Nash
https://www.pixiv.net/member_illust.php?mode=medium&illust_id=66078864 – The palette really makes this one, but the fact that you can't see their faces lends an extra ethereal note to it.
"Skyscrapers naturally evolved fire sprinklers as a primitive immune system… later, the same plumbing infrastructure adapted into basic washrooms to entice mutualistic symbiotes, such as humans."
Selecting elements in CSS via subtweet
WarioWare: Smooth Moves but instead of waiting five seconds between microgames for you to change your Wii Remote hand position, it waits a full minute for you to slide the Joycons out of one Toycon and into another.
Chrono Trigger wind + OoT Ganon's Tower wind + Wario Land 4 wind remix (10,541,185,233 views)
"As it turns out, flagpoles are a subclass of broadcast towers that only transmit a single visual signal, so if I just hack in and change the signal type to "clairvoyant",
"Who'd win? Now, before you ask, YES the foosball team's goal is foosball-sized, but so is the ball, and the human team's goalie will have much greater trouble blocking it."
CDs are spelled "disc" because they're round; Floppies are spelled "disk" because they have four limbs, squirm, and try to run away before you shove them head-first in the drive.
From the Museum Of Useless Algorithms: an exhibit of one hundred elegant for-loops that reimplement Javascript's string.split(), by people unaware of the latter's existence, and optimised exclusively for their program's domain.
Naturally-grown sword-hilts, crystallised from the ceaseless mineral storms that torment this wasteland, ground fit only for the skull-shaped fungi and bone-white bone-shaped bushes.
"Even if we never make it, then it's enough knowing we still imagined a better world for us, that at least we weren't fooled. …But even if we were fooled, if we couldn't imagine any better, then it's enough knowing we could have, would have, if our minds were only let to grow."
In the days when even the gods were young, and even they could feel surprise and wonder
Dog-billed platypus
Letters can be wrapped in different physical abstractions than just envelopes, such as bricks
Houses installed with heated broadband tanks for extra-warm selfies and pet footage
Humanity is becoming rejected by the Earth: plants and meat have become inedible, trees and rocks cannot be broken by any tools, water can no longer be swum, air can no longer carry speech.
*runs to the tweeting booth and grabs the "just the Kirby fans" mic* Kirby Star Allies is going to have Helper THREE Hero, isn't it
Despite all hopes otherwise, all the Breath Of The Wild flashbacks, including the new ones, remain as stiff and utilitarian as the Overwatch character trailers. Even the moments of vulnerability feel prescribed, doled out to contrast the character's single bullet-point trait.
Metroid Zero Mission was correct in observing Super Metroid's graphics closely aligned with comics, but diverged from the exact style: Zero Mission has the broad strokes and harsh contrasts of 90s-00's comics; Super is thin-lined analogous-coloured 70s-80s comics.
*I enter wordlessly with a horrendous deadpan expression. After a long silence you begin to speak, but I interrupt* The PUBG Ripoffs Have Gone Too Far
"In horizontal-scrolling games, a World may be subdivided into multiple Dashes, emphasising the act of running across them – for instance, Super Mario Bros.'s famous World 1, Dash 1."
"Everything in this enchanted realm smells sweeter; colours are brighter; CSS transitions are smoother; streaming music never stutters; app icons feel like soft velvet or crisp dry felt to the touch."
"It is only through her suffering that the world above is sustained." *watches her endlessly read rows of numbers in an infinitely long PDF with non-selectable text, and manually type them into an infinitely long spreadsheet* "No…! Please free her!"
"So, uhh… can we… breathe in space?" "Of course - it's perfectly safe." "R-right…" *gingerly removes helmet and opens mouth right as an entire shooting star flies into it* "GFFGH–" "Shhh, calm down," *covers their spluttering mouth* "you have to hold it in your lungs."
Mario Odyssey 2 where Mario unexpectedly crash-lands on a plateau in "the Nowhere Kingdom", gets three moons, then takes off never to return.
Mother 3 except it turns out that the rest of the world which was supposedly destroyed has instead become the setting of Splatoon.
"No, humans do not make dinging noises when we wink… I'm sorry… We added all those sounds in post for absolutely no reason." "Oh… okay. Thanks. I'll go now." "…Hey." "What?" "Don't believe everything you hear… ・‿< 𝅘𝅥𝅮"
Demon timidly revealing to her partner that she has scarab wings, the rarest and least dignified shape.
"Italy is famous for pasta, widely considered to be the jQuery of dishes."
more like… Mysspelled. Send tweet. What do you mean you didn't quite catch the first half of that tweet? You thought I was just making some kind of hissing noise instead of starting dictation? Honestly sweetie, I know I make hissing and spluttering noises basically constantly bu
The Mushroom Kingdom in Mario Odyssey is an aesthetic nightmare and every moment spent in it is more painfully awkward than the last.
At least Breath Of The Wild finally brought back the notion that the purpose of the stone is to resist the sword's easy removal.
How many people are familiar with the Master Sword but not with the Sword In The Stone, and can only assume swords being slightly embedded in ornate pedestals is Just How You Store Them
It is wrong to call the Donkey Kong arcade glitch a "kill screen", when what it does is give you your own life back.
I'm 99% certain the resemblance is a coincidence… and another 99% certain that there'll still be some wry reference by one about the other.
*I look at the brown thing on the left* *I look at the gold thing on the right* *I look at the brown thing* *I look at the gold thing* Ehh, don't worry about it.
Dragons can accept transfusions of human blood, but too much will give them ungainly hugging and snuggling urges that their scales and horns will daunt.
Ninety-foot-tall robot half-embedded in mud: "Why do I exist? Why was I created? What point is a life with no meaning?" Robot repairwoman (chewing own ponytail to resist urge to smoke): "Have you tried exercising"
The real touch of brilliance in Enviro Bear is the presence of other bears that are also in cars. Elevates it from what would've been a one-note zany joke to an interactive Far Side cartoon.
I'm deeply grateful for Marble Garden Zone's music being a one thousand percent pure example of that genre vapourwave exists to deconstruct.
I just encountered this sidebar content on some old webcomic's site
If The Official Yume Nikki Sequel Is Grimdark I'm Calling The Space Fire Department To Get Me Down From This Planet
This stuck with me as a particularly hilarious example of Hollywood's limitations in imagining women's bodies, taken to literal extremes.
Just remembered that in InnerSpace, an 80s Fantastic Voyage movie, the inner-naut (inside the average-Joe protagonist's body) is kissed into his girlfriend's body, immediately comes face-to-face with his unknown unborn child, and then is quickly kissed out of her body again.
Amy is of course badly used in CD, immediately becoming a very extraneous damsel in distress, and afterward a mere clingy annoyance… instead, she really should've been CD's Tails, constantly behind Sonic while he aloofly, obliviously does his own thing.
Sonic being followed by Tails even in single-player, copying his every action, expresses Tails's longing to be everything Sonic is. Amy, similarly, follows Sonic into the world of CD as a celebrity crush, longing to go wherever Sonic goes.
Sonic CD and Sonic 2 have a lot of convergent designs due to being developed simultaneously from shared ideas, but one I find interesting is how Amy Rose and Tails are the same archetype… they're both the Wannabe.
This inference, regardless of its actual efficacy, provides some angle for me to examine not just how I value spoilers, but a number of other things – how I'm excited by novelty and variety in a work, and how much I treasure emotional receptiveness when I experience it.
I care so, so, so much about immersion when consuming a work that I value - I try hard to view them alone, in quiet, with assurance of no interruptions. I am also bothersomely paranoid and anxious about spoilers, and always have been.
A tweet a year and a half ago by @metasynthie speculated that people who care about spoilers generally value immersive viewing of a work over analytic viewing. As a piece of anecdata: I realised on reading it that this inference very accurately describes myself.
http://jamie.smackjeeves.com/ – This is a rather soothing teen romance comic… features good dialogue and well-distinguished characters, and a gentle yet loving mood throughout.
"Care to try a Nightmare Dog? It's like our regular hot dogs, but garnished with the chili sauce you can only find in nightmares!" *pours mayonnaise on hot dog*
*clicks off projector displaying Venn diagram comprehensively explaining the differences between vore and predding* Now I've taught you everything I know.
Elite squad of masked assassins themed after the Fibonacci numbers, featuring two smouldering rivals who resent having to both be "Number 1".
A good portion of the 22 panels boil down to just replacing the background with abstract shading or gradients, or turning foreground objects to silhouettes, which seems technically accessible for even a basic RPG Maker-esque game.
I feel like there ought to be a version of the Wally Wood 22 panels but for VNs and RPGs and other games with textbox-based dialogue, and no 3D models to camera-pan around.
That relatable feel when you're a tree witch going to space
https://sylvaniacomic.com/ – I'd previously dismissed this one as a bit too dry and emotionally dulled, but… it's still rather pretty and has that good slice-of-life tranquility to it.
"I'm afraid that LOVEPUTER, the supercomputer that controls all humankind, has turned evil." "Homicidal-sadist evil or helicopter-parent evil?" "The latter." "OK." *opens right half of the cabinet, reaches in and grabs the rocket launcher in the left half anyway*
"So you've conquered the tower and rescued me… Phwehehehehe… little didst thou know that since this was Easy Mode, I'm gonna turn into a tall-as-hell werebat and laugh at you through the credits." *turns into a tall-as-hell we
"Lava levels indicate that the designer was eating microwaved pasta at this part of the design meeting… ice levels indicate, conversely, that they were eating office fridge leftovers."
CodaUnknown's Beginnersguides. Send tweet. What do you mean, I'm out of "HTTP postage stamps"? Did you just make that up as an excuse to
#AGDQ2018 reminder
http://activatecomix.com/158.comic – This is a decent short mystery comic elevated by a lively duo and some good colours.
http://mosscreekdivide.smackjeeves.com/ – This comic's slightly unusual – seemingly a standard otherworld kids' adventure, it's actually told in flashbacks while more unpredictable consequences unfold in the present. Good colours and character designs, too.
"See that mountain? You can see it." *cut to the words "EVERY MOUNTAIN VISIBLE" overlaid on game footage*
https://youtu.be/3JtQcqk7KWA?t=21 – I'm just cackling at the sheer tonal dissonance of this sample source. Bog bless.
http://animatedscreenshots.tumblr.com/post/169356955190/universal-history-of-light-the-beginners-guide – When I saw the latter of these two scenes, I immediately connected it to the former, even though they're contextually completely different and almost certainly coincidental.
Story that takes place in a "post-cultural future" where "all cultures have merged into one", only for the characters to encounter, to their dismay, cross-fictive migrants from much better abandoned fictional universes.
"H-he's coming out of the haunted doghouse! Why was he hiding in there?!" "Guys! I… I know where I'm buried. I mean, where the dog's buried. It wants us to dig it up, but don't worry, I think it's just letting us eat its own bones."
Birds that have internalised the movements of the runecarvers' guildhall guards enough to regularly swipe Wards Against Weasels runes to protect their nests
*lowers record needle onto stump* "Let's see… snowstorm, teen whispering that she's gay, thunderstorm, teen whispering that he's gay, wolves, Civil War battle… AHA! Teen whispering she robbed the State Bullion Exchange with her gay crush!" *slips handcuffs onto stump's roots*
"This world seems pretty normal except everyone seems to say "opened" instead of "killed". Pretty zany difference, huh? Also, I just noticed I'm wearing one of those lockets everyone I saw was wearing, but I don't remember ever putting one on…"
*footage of me rifling through a copy of Yet Another 202 Knee-Slapping Flat Design Jokes To Tickle Your Phone Freak's Funnybone* "Hmm… ah, of course." *reaches under camera and turns knob, blurring the footage and overlaying the words "LEARN MORE" in white Helvetica*
At least the good Meltdown news is that 2018 is now 474.5 days long.
OK, the Meltdown bugfix just got installed on my PAL Mega Drive, and the performance hit isn't very noticeable.
In solidarity with the Meltdown memory security bugfix patch, I'm now adding even more unnecessary extraneous words to my tweet messages so that they now take an additional 30% longer time to read.
On release people thought the button-press ciphers and the other obtuse puzzles in Fez were a mistake or a design overindulgence, but the real mistake was the tiny split-up cube bits. They gave everyone the wrong impression about the game.
The protag's flippance could've possibly undermined the seriousness of the plot, but the very macabre elements keep everything loaded with tension and meaning.
I like how so much of this comic is centered around frantic bargaining for the slightest of freedoms with manipulative, predatory employers, and how such a depressing premise is kept moving by its relentlessly upbeat, mule-headed protagonist.
*think's about how The Incredible Machine is the only programming language with toasters and lava lamps as language primitives* It really is that adjective in its name
"All the employees have empty eye sockets with casino chips lodged deep in them, but we can just glue these stacks of chips over our real eyes and say we're working ten shif– WOW, how'd a "5 years of lifespan" chip get in here??" *starts prying the stack open frantically*
"It still chokes me up… watching the sun appear behind the Earth, light spreading around the lumps and spikes, cracks and nooks… it'll never be a sphere again, but it's the same Earth, and the same light and warmth."
"I think my paranoia's acting up again… but if this isn't what you want to hear, then I'm sure it's just fine and there's nothing to worry about."
http://thehazardsoflove.com/ – This is an incredible otherworld comic – its canny protagonist constantly, seamlessly spews out counter-bureaucratic bollocks and cunning deals, which ultimately end up barely accomplishing anything. (Content warning for debt-related body mutilation.)
Also, people aren't capitalising on Link To The Past Randomiser fast enough… just tear apart whatever Metroidvania you're working on and give it seed-based randomisation with an item dependency tree as complex as LTTP's.
Someone, anyone, please, make a port of Catherine's multiplayer so people can play that without having to play Catherine.
Indie game 2018 predictions: the goose game will be good but won't sell as many copies as its trailer got RTs. Shovel Knight: King of Cards will be good but flawed. Sword Boyfriend will be delayed to 2019. Barkley Gaiden never existed.
Seems like it could be better if I deliberately tap with the side of my fingers, keeping them as trimmed as possible… hmm.
I got the game Million Onion Hotel but, to my dismay, it turns out that mashing a touchscreen for more than a minute makes my upper finger joints hurt… my very slight double-jointedness bending back to bite me.
I'm pushing back against the "Majora's Mask is creepy/haunted/cursed" zeitgeist. I'm going in full bore reverse. Majora's Mask is the most blessed and life-affirming Nintendo adventure game of all time.
I just started watching an old GDQ race vid, and by SHEER accident the first place runner finished at exactly midnight. Looks like I'm Starting The Year Off Right, Whether I Wanted To Or Not.
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