Happy Birthday dog!

by Niels Brouwers 23. November 2011 07:54

I drew this dog for my nephew who turned 7 recently.

I don't know why exactly I drew him a dog but there is a story involving him and dogs:

Once upon a time, in a temple in Hua Hin, he and his brothers were mocking a couple of dogs from up a ledge, the dogs were below them and the boys were unreachable and they were challenging the dogs.  Then I remember my little nephew walking into a cavern, dissappearing around the corner and after a few seconds he came back yelling and screaming. The group of dogs was chasing him out! Luckily they didn't hurt him, but it probably though him a lesson! It would have been a great funniest home vid!



Wappy dog

by Niels Brouwers 9. November 2011 06:33

So, I noticed this trailer for wappy dog from Nintendo. It's like a Sony Aibo connected with your Nintendo DS. Cool idea, mixing reality with the virtual world. Skylanders is another game doing this. I am not sure if these games are really worth playing, but it is just another way of interfacing with your players. And that's cool!

It inspired me to draw this 'Appy Dog' which is a little further in the future from now. I imagined an iphone / android app that you can use to control your pet. Just plug in the two antenna's in your pet and off you go!

On to some Carter Jones progress, I finally fixed a weird nasty bug in the level drawing. Also the level 3 (background) graphics are nearly done, I still need to do a lot of variations and waterfall animations but it's getting there! I am also investigating other platforms as well, it seems that with a little effort (I am an optimist with estimations! ) I can port CJA to other platforms like IPhone and Android. But first it has to become an XBOX Live Indie - I need focus! And time, lots of it!

Last but not least, and something completely different: the Dutch Ice Carving Championship 2011 is coming up. I am participating again, so that will take up some time as well the next couple of weeks. I will keep you updated!

New level in progress

by Niels Brouwers 17. October 2011 03:15

Hopefully you didn't notice that I upgraded this website to a newer version of blogengine, it did happen however and actually it was pretty easy. The only thing that didn't work out of the box was the twitter feed, but I fixed that.

I have started on the third level graphics for Carter Jones, I still need to do the entire level 2 graphics but I am expecting those graphics to be a little easier to draw (level 2 takes place inside ...err... something - it's supposed to be a surprise). Level 3 is a real interesting level to draw, it takes Carter through the jungle to the temple where he will find what he was hired to look for. He will also find a lot more, here's a quick concept sketch I did today which will also satisfy all the halloween enthousiasts out there:


Excuse me sir, where can I find the toilet? Oh, right there huh? Thanks!

Ofcourse, when trying to post this entry I stumbled upon a blogengine.net error... fixed it, but it did catch me by surprise!

The value of good Level Design and the Tools for it

by Niels Brouwers 18. September 2011 03:36

Because I am enjoying myself so much whilst making Carter Jones, I decided to expand the animation tool with a level editor. This will enable me to quickly move around stuff (the background, but also the baddies etc.) in a level. Previously I was doing all that in the game itself, with a built in level-editor (and I was placing baddies through a manually edited xml file). That was not ideal, now it is just an easy to develop windows forms application so if I need some special function (like the roll that you see on the screenshot) then I can build it really easy.

This tool will grow in functionality and will greatly reducde the time to 'design' the levels. Designing levels is probably the hardest part in a game, if you mess up the design then the player will notice immediately and reject the game because it is no fun (it is probably just annoying or boring or somewhere lacking). So by enabling the design process outside of the game I hope to increase the quality and also the quantity of the levels. Level editing was kind of a chore before, now it is actually fun!


Lines and mushrooms

by Niels Brouwers 13. September 2011 07:08

You may have heard me whining about lines and how difficult it is to find the right settings to get the lines that I want. Here's a good example of lines that I like:


I used the default 5px brush in Photoshop with a hardness of 0% (I'm just writing this down for my own reference :-) ) and I did absolutely no scaling. Mushrooms are ofcourse for Mario and the upcoming autumn! I like autumn, it brings great colours and a sense of change. 

This particular mushroom is not too happy, he missed the auditions for the next Mario game ... no wonder!