Pig on a Hill Productions

General March/April Update

So I think I can safely say this week has, felt at least, the most unproductive I’ve had for a long time. I hit a wall with updating Puck and Pixel Pals 2 so as the week is now finished and I think I’ve finally got my brain together I thought I’d write a post to talk about what’s been going on.

In fact I’ve had so much to say that I have 2 more posts written and cued up to go live over the next week. I know I have said this many times before but I really want to get posts out a little more regularly (more than every 2/3 months I hear you say, shock horror!) so I am planning to try to get at least a short post out every week.

Anyway, to the updating!

I’ve been working with a company called Frostlight Solutions lately as a freelance developer. I’ve worked on several projects and am enjoying it immensely. It’s been great to work on projects that I have a specific ‘this is what needs to be done’ outlines for a project and a deadline. Unlike my own apps where things go as they go and I have no deadlines at all. It does of course mean that my time is split between doing “paid” work and my own stuff and the paid work will always come first, always. But it is great to have some money in the bank which will of course mean I’ll have more to invest into my own projects. Finally might have enough to get a decent monitor and stop using my old 19” LG TV.

I’ve been working on my own projects for the last few of weeks however and been able to make some good progress on updates for Puck and Pixel Pals 2. I’m going to into some more detail is the next few posts on them over the next couple of days so stay tuned for more on them soon.

As I said though this week has felt very unproductive. I’ve spent a lot of time playing around with my server. I’ve re-optimised a lot of it due to Linode (my hosting company) upgrading their services. It’s amazing actually, I’ve pretty much had my server specs doubled for no extra cost. If anybody is looking for a Virtual Private Server then check then out at: Linode.com

Playing with the server has got me thinking about multiplayer games though. My current games have no real need for this particular function. For example the only multiplayer Pixel Pals 2 will get will be turn based battling and I believe I can do that using Game Center which is built into iOS (I haven’t looked into the details of that feature yet though, a lot more to do until then). Ether way it’s a very useful thing to know about. Any game these days, in my opinion, needs to have very good social and sharing features or let you play with your friends directly (Minecraft is an example of the latter). It also can’t be dependant on 1 operating system. Users should be able to play with each other if there on any OS, though mainly I think I’d be looking at iOS, Mac OS X, Android, Windows and Linux.

So that’s my plan/challenge for the next couple of days, to make a simple game server which allows users to play a simple game together. Mainly as a proof of concept and prove to myself I can do it. I find it’s always good to challenge yourself with something new every now and a again and as I’m stuck in my current projects this should hopefully clear my mind and start again fresh.

Well that’s all for tonight. I’m going to be posting some more specifics on Puck and Pixel Pals 2 update progress over the next couple of days, so watch out for that.