Tekko 2016 Four Classic Novels Part 2 Live!

Once again, with the coming of this fine day we have now released the second part of the Four Classic Chinese Novels panel from Tekko 2016.  Enjoy!

FourNovels-Opening

~RCS

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Tekko 2016 Review: Friday Part 2

So the other day we talked about what we did on the first half of Friday at Tekko 2016. Today we’ll talk about the second half of Friday. After the East vs. West panel we went out to grab some food at the local Jimmy Johns around the corner to the convention center. That is very convenient! Good food, fast service…perfect for a place attached to the convention center!

Anyway after food we lounged a bit again to get ready for the next panel and then we headed to our destination. This would prove to be the hardest panel for us to do: How to Write Dirty Stuff. It was hard because it wasn’t history related, like all the other ones were. I’m a history nerd, so it’s much easier to talk about history than explaining to people how to effectively write sex scenes.

Unfortunately given the material and the fact that the entire panel was just commenting on porn gifs, we didn’t bother to record it…Youtube wouldn’t have let us upload that, sorry.

We are extra sorry about that one, because just as we were finishing up…a gentleman came in saying that he had really hoped to attend the panel, but got caught up at work and left too late to make it. We felt so bad, but if there’s a lot of interest we will definitely bring it or something close to it back next year. I do have some semblance of experience in the topic, what with my book, Escort being a dirty book.

Subtle, no?

Subtle, no?

With a little bit of time to kill before our next panel we headed into the dealer’s room to check it out. It was a much bigger space than previous years, which was definitely a cool thing. There were still a few places to get hung up on in tight alleys, but overall it was much easier to get around.

We got a chocolate covered marshmallow thing from the fudge shop in the middle; that was pretty tasty. Then we headed back to the Tekko Gakkou room for our final panel of Friday night: Four Classic Novels: China’s Literary Effect on Japanese Anime and Games.

Below you can see the first video for that panel and the second one will go up tomorrow.

FourNovels-Opening

After that panel we were exhausted and headed home.  Set to be back by early Saturday afternoon for our final panel!  We were so excited we barely slept…no just kidding, we trudged home and sacked out after grabbing some dinner.

And where did we grab dinner from on the way home?  You know where…

It's almost a tradition at this point.

It’s almost a tradition at this point.

~RCS

DJ Comic: July Holidays Part 2

DJComic_008

If you haven’t played Dynasty Heroes yet, you should give it a try.  If you like Romance of the Three Kingdoms, you’ll probably get more of the jokes than I did.  Even with Rich turning every conversation into some kind of Asian history lecture, I still don’t remember all this stuff.

As a kid I loved iced oatmeal raisin cookies, and I still do!  But sometimes they are so hard to find!  I can find oatmeal raisin cookies pretty easy, but the iced ones always seem to elude me somehow.  And unfortunately the last time I actually managed to find them, they were hard as rocks!  I was so disappointed!

Didn’t actually get to watch any fireworks on the 4th, but I was with the hubby so it was still a good holiday!

Ͼ-Mimi

Dynasty Heroes Developer Commentary Part 3 Is Up!

Like the title suggests, part 3 of our developer commentary is up.  Check it out…

~RCS

NIC3NTERTAINMENT Pesents: Dynasty Heroes!

All right folks, not only is it official that the wife and I are now running our own game development company called NIC3NTERTAINMENT, but we are finally able to put up the first of our two projects to be released: Dynasty Heroes!

TitleScreen3

As mentioned before, it is free, so give it a download and play it.  You can find it, along with the cast and crew behind it, by clicking on the page tab at the top of the page labeled Dynasty Heroes.  Or if you can’t wait, clicking on that picture will take you to the free mediafire download.

We also have a ‘Let’s Play’ on our YouTube channel that discusses some of the hidden references and in-jokes of the game, along with some developer commentary recorded by yours truly.

So give the game a quick once-through, or a two- or three-through since there are multiple endings, head over to the DickJutsu Youtube Channel to watch some commentary, and make sure to share our work, and comment on it in the Dynasty Heroes page.  It’s a quick play, being about an hour in length.

~RCS

Hey, you can’t beat a free game, right?

Game Dev: Title Screens

Since we’re all patiently waiting for me to finish the touch-up work on Dynasty Heroes and Monster, I figured I would let you all in on one of the processes of Game Development that I like to call:

Temporary Art Assets!

 

These are files that you use in place of finished art in the game.  Then you just name the finished art, when it’s completed, the same thing and upload it into your development program or library folder (depending on what program or coding you’re using), and ta-da, it magically replaces the temporary assets.

To give you a step-by-step, uhh, -ish example of how this works, I’ll walk you through how I did the Dynasty Heroes Title Screen.  First we started off with a picture of the title screen that we wanted to pay homage to, the background for the character select screen of the old arcade game Dynasty Wars.

TestBack

Pretty nifty, right?  So we size that to our needs and throw a pretty generic title on it, then call it DH-Title.png (for Dynasty Heroes Title Screen, get it?).  We wind up with this in our game when it goes out to testers:

TestBack2

Pretty simple, right?  The title is green, because that’s the main character’s associated color.  The reason the title in Chinese is on the right is in homage to Koei’s Dynasty Warriors series, which always had the pictographic characters for the Japanese title (Shin Sangoku Musou) on the right side of its titles.  By the way, the Chinese characters are Chao Dai Ying Xiong.  So we’ve got a pretty nifty looking title screen, albeit a little rough-looking, for all of about 30 minutes of work, maybe less.

But it’s still a copyrighted image, so we can’t actually use what we’ve made.  But we have a good idea of what we want.  In the original picture we have, from left to right, the equivalents of our characters Yide, Xuande, Yunchang, Zilong, and a character that won’t appear in our game, Kongming; but Kongming was, historically, an advisor to Xuande so Bogui takes his place in our game.

And none of that last line made any sense to you, because you haven’t played it yet and don’t know who anybody is.  Uhh, moving on…

We then hire an artist to make us some real art, that artist happened to the same one who made all of our battle art, Rich Graysonn.  And in case we have to release without Rich’s art, since we were on a deadline originally, we made a new set with the art we had gotten from our portrait artist, Sketoart (Farid).  And by we, I totally mean I threw them all in GiMP and made, well, this…

BlueSky

Is it just me, or does Yide (the guy in the red cap) look like he’s shyly hiding behind Xuande (the guy in the front)?

We then made up a new title panel and put that over top of the picture to arrive at this terrifying destination (along with some spacing reassignments):

DHTitleScreen

Now instead of Yide hiding, it’s Bogui (the older guy in orange) hiding.

And there we have it, we have a temporary art asset that, worst case scenario, we can use if the game has to ‘ship’ (a figurative term, since there are no physical copies of the game).  But remember, that our deadline issue is solved (bleh), so we had more than enough time to get all of our art assets from our artist friend(s).  Rich made us this:

RTKstart_screen

Not quite a perfect homage, but it gets the point across and still has a similar motif to it.  With a base we have our artist a few more fine touches to it and we get this dandy picture…

 

TitleScreen2

So now we have a cool picture with an awesome fire effect.  But we still need it to say what we’re playing.  So we throw together a title panel, that really doesn’t do the professional artist’s work justice I admit, and we wind up with our final version of the title screen!

TitleScreen3

We then rename that picture as DH-Title.png and put it in the folder with all of our game’s art assets, effectively replacing the second picture, which had already replaced the original picture that we couldn’t use for copyright reasons.  And ta-da, we have a title screen.

We did the same thing for all of the character portraits.  The villain, Zhongying, was actually the first portrait to be finished.  So we just made a dozen copies of his portrait and renamed each copy as one of the other characters’ names.  Then when each of the other characters, in turn, had their portraits finished by Farid we just resized them and replaced the original portrait of Zhongying with the new picture.

This meant that we didn’t have to wait for the art to be finished before we could continue the development.  And that’s what Temporary Art Assets in game development are really for.

Hopefully my next post will be announcing the game’s release, right?  Either way, I’ll try to make a few more posts about the development process.  And as we work on our next project, Possession, I’ll try to somewhat regular updates and insights on how we make it.

~RCS

Tekkoshocon 2014 Begins!

Just as a reminder to everyone Tekkoshocon in Pittsburgh, if anyone plans to attend our panels, we’ll be at Panel Room 3 from 2pm to 3pm for The History Behind Sengoku Basara!  We will also be at Panel Room 2 from 6pm to 7pm for The History of Dynasty Warriors!

Come one down and listen to me blabber on about Warring States Japan and Han Dynasty China for a couple hours, and maybe even win some free prizes, too!

~RCS

Tekkoshocon 2014 News!

I’ve been rather critical of Tekkoshocon before, but this year we’ve decided to try it out again.  We’ve been told by folks that went last year that a lot of the things we complained about had been fixed; so we’ve decided to give it another shot after going to Baltimore’s Otakon last year.

But not only that, we’ve gone two steps further: I’m going to be hosting two panels at Tekko this year.  As it looks right now one panel, on Japanese History related to the anime/game series Sengoku Basara, will be Friday afternoon at 2pm in Panel Room 3.  The other panel on the History of the Three Kingdoms Era of China as related to the game series Dynasty Warriors will be held the same day (Friday) at 6pm in Panel Room 2.

I’ll let you all know as soon as I do if the times change.

We’ll be giving away door prizes at both panels as well, including books and computer games, and of course the chance to listen to me talk about two of my favorite subjects for an hour a piece.

So if you’re going to be at Tekkoshocon this year in early April, feel free to come on down and see either or both of my panels.

The door prizes alone are pretty nice, we’ve got some decent games to give away: Europa Universalis 3, Majesty 2, a few Uno games, a book on Ninjutsu in the Sengoku Basara panel, and who knows what else!

Oh I know what else; that’s right.  Anyway…

We’d love to see our adoring fans (maybe even both of you!) come on down to see us, especially if you’ll be there anyway.

~RCS

Harlem Sellout

I’m sure you’ve all heard of the Harlem Shake by now, it’s been on CNN as a humor story, it was probably on FoxNews, too.  Although judging by Bill O’Reilly’s comments about Psy’s Gangnam Style being meaningless (it was a song about wealthy South Korean assholes and posers who want to be wealthy South Korean assholes) I can only imagine that their coverage referred to it as some kind of ‘tribal dance for minority terrorists’ or something.

Anyway, if you’ve followed this site at all you know that I don’t generally get into these fads too well.  Part of it is because I’m not a complete sell out (hey there’s no ads on this site, right?*) but another part of it is that by the time I get around to doing something about a passing fad, it has probably passed and I just look like a schmuck by trying to get in on the action a few moments too late.

Well, that’s fine, because this I’ve sold out and I’m getting into the whole Harlem Shake fad!  I thought of the old SNES/Playstion game Romance of the Three Kingdoms IV (that’s IV as in 4, they are currently up to 12, I believe).  Well the game had little sprites that moved about on the status report screen.  I powered the game up last night and took some videos to make my own RTK Harlem Shake!

~RCS

*Disclaimer: If by the time you’re reading this I have decided I have enough traffic to make dealing with advertisers profitable, then just ignore the whole I’m not a sell out thing.  Thanks.

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