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Andre La Barre
Lives in Norfolk, NY
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Andre La Barre

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Is anyone else here a Hyper RPG fan? It's a Twitch channel which makes big shows with crowd interaction and retains transparency with its viewers. It has loyal fans, but their outreach has suffered. Perhaps there will be better on-site promotional tools in 2017, but I'm motivated enough to give some shout-outs in the meantime. I've been spending a lot of time watching and the channel has taken the bulk of my cheer bits as I participate in Twitch's ads-for-bits beta... which I frelling love BTW.

A new miniseries starts Friday at 6PM EST featuring a campaign using the Open Legend roleplaying system. Hopefully voice actor/Critical Role GM Matt Mercer will bring in fans who will stick around after the novelty of seeing him as a player wears off. I've got bits to spend on a "BRONZEBOYZ" cheer for the GM either way. I'm not sure how else the audience is participating yet.

After Open Legend (at 9PM EST), the final episode of the Death From Above: Renegades miniseries I've been quite enjoying with be live. It consists of skits followed by in-character tactical Battletech sessions. When mechs are damaged in the game, the mech models are damaged for real. The players of characters who die can't return. If they have no other shows on Hyper RPG, they're off the payroll completely. Viewers can intervene by purchasing powers for the main characters or the guest star opponents. (The stakes are still high in this episode because the second season of the main DFA show begins the week after Thanksgiving.)

On Tuesdays, I watch The Gauntlet. It's one-shot sessions of different guest players trying to make it through an arena using a variant of the Pathfinder rules. Viewers can purchase potions or traps. If continuity drives you mad, The Gauntlet's game show nature might make it your best option. Just keep in mind each episode hinges on the guests.

I'm also making good time catching up on the Shadowrun: Corporate SINs archives so I can maybe watch live on Wednesdays without skipping anything. I might start on the new volume of Vanquished (Valiant RPG) for Mondays as well.
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Lots of procrastination.  A wait for a new computer (which I love).  Unity shader issues which required waiting for a fix.  Unity OpenGL issues resolved by a launch option scheduled to be removed.  Joy.

My procedural shmup Gall of the Thrall has been slowly improving.  It still needs more graphical variation and perhaps some more base bullet patterns, but it's improving.

Here's my earlier post:

The gist is the same.  After every level, the player is given the choice to turn back.  Once turning back, the player must complete as many levels as they finished before deciding.  The player has three lives and no extends.  Losing all three lives nullifies the score.

I've added a new twist by allowing the player to attempt more loops once the first is complete.  The number of loops is decided by the number of levels which were finished before turning back.

Graphically, I've toned down the bullet trails because they made it feel too claustrophobic.  I've reserved the brighter trails for a new type of circular bullet which does not get cancelled when the shooter is destroyed.   This invention has been useful for maintaining the danger and forcing the player to use their bullet-cancelling trawl.

I've settled on a simple multiplier display for the partial scores.  I don't tend to like numbers popping up amidst explosions.

I still have to decide on what to do about the player's shape.  The random silhouette makes it hard to determine the front from the back.  I might just bite the bullet and design a constant model.

Naturally, I'm skipping over the myriad of little tweaks that come with game development, but these stills can't manage to capture my pretty scrolling clouds either so frell it. ;)
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Andre La Barre

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I don't use Communities or Collections.  I mainly visit the former to decline bot invitations.

However, I ALWAYS use Circles.  Those were what defined Google+ in the beginning.  I consistently use the Circles menu at the top of the page.  The removal of that menu is a frelling nightmare.  It took me an agonizing long time to find the revert link and I dread the update.  Please, please, please, +Google+, keep some form of Circles menu on the same page as the posts.

Google+ posts are not random garbage tweets that get lost in an endless stream.  They are categorized miniature blogs from trusted sources which, when paired with the quick Circles menu, can be read in bulk when playing catch-up.  I do so every week on my PC.
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I've ranted about this before.  This cartoon may have set me off, but my rambling goes past anything it was trying to represent.  Also, I don't play many AAA games anymore so I might be way out of touch.  My apologies.

Breast size in games, the SoulCalibur/Edge franchise in particular, is a trigger for me.  We're talking about a series that began with Sophitia rubbing her muff in her opponent's face in a throw deemed a trip to heaven.  It's a series that continued with upskirt shots and extraneous jiggling.  Frell, it's even had a steady supply of jailbait!  I could accept Tira's ripped costume being offensive when taken in the context of Japan's rape fetish culture.  However, I could never feel the outrage over Ivy  having (gasp) a differently formed body.  Seriously, THAT'S what brought it over the top for people?

If the argument is to have a less sexual fighting game, that's a legitimate industry complaint with a questionable target.  Unfortunately, it always seems to instead come down to how a fetish outweighs respect to a body type.  Add bonus points if a male making the argument claims to like smaller breasts more anyway (as if swapping fetishes fixes anything).

In real life, many women with large breasts get objectified and harassed.  In games, this has been magnified such that the mere presence of a woman with large breasts implies exploitation and a call is made to remove/change her.  If it was any other body type, there would be a call for inclusivity.  Yet, somehow, the "right" to objectify large-breasted women is so deeply ingrained in our culture that strong, large-breasted characters presented in a non-sexual manner are likely out of reach.

...Not that I'd put them in SoulCalibur anyway.  Seriously, that game's made for perving. ;)
The most creative, innovative team on the planet or something whatever...
The most creative, innovative team on the planet or something whatever...
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I probably lean toward SJW having witnessed too much harassment and out of context Twitter collage propaganda to call anyone out.  I'd just like progressive posts to not fall in the same traps they propose avoiding.  Call characters out for behavior.  Call out for more body types.  Just don't apply negative connotations to other body types in the process as it defeats the purpose.
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My obsession with legible interfaces used to drive members of the BYOND community nuts.  Now my pitiful programmer art is armed with a small amount of color knowledge and I'm taking on random UIs in comment sections.  Fortunately, the developer of the game showed up in the middle of my general purpose rant so I was able to be more constructive.

Gran Vitreous Steam forum, I'll be coming for you! ;)
Space Game Junkie's profile photoAndre La Barre's profile photoRyan Luck's profile photo
+Andre La Barre Thanks again for the feedback!
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I've hopped into the massive pile of uncurated Steam curators.  I went in order of my profile's review summary so my least helpful reviews are listed first.  You can probably skip my review links until the end.

As for game development, I've been writing and rewriting a procedural development library intended to help me with a multi-genre game.  It has taken me way too long.  Aside from the joys of C# garbage collection, the problem has likely been that I went too generic.  In the end, there's probably a simple, more specific implementation that does the bulk of what I want to do and the rest is best suited for another pattern.
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I've been returning to a themed mesh idea so my procedurally generated abstract shapes look like they belong together.

A theme is essentially a looping one-dimensional curve. In this implementation, it's a looping Catmull-Rom with points filled in by a seeded generator. A method returns position based on the percentage along the path.

I then create an outline which is symmetrical along an axis. (The outlines are handy to keep separated from my meshes because I use their points for 2D colliders.) I start with a regular polygon. The value returned from the theme then offsets each point relative to the center. I set a starting percentage along the theme path and use it for the first point on the outline. I add more to the percentage as I go around half of the outline's edge. (As stated, the other half is mirrored.) For different outlines, I use different starting percentages. These outlines form a themed set.

Pictured are two differently seeded sets used to create extruded meshes. The same concept should work with cylindrical/spherical meshes should I try them later.
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I frelling love Farscape.
BREAKING NEWS! PLEASE SHARE: Intervention​ 7 is now The Intersection of SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, and FUTURE MEDIA! Proud to be joined by  Gigi Edgley (“Chiana”, Farscape), Todd Haberkorn(“Hetalia”, “Fairy Tale”; Actor: “Spock”, “Star Trek Continues”)  Robert Axelrod (Lord Zedd, Power Rangers) and Pete Abrams (Sluggy Freelance) with many more guests TBA. We are an annual event celebrating Science Fiction, Fantasy, Pop Culture, and the Art that surrounds them. Come meet the creators, actors, developers, and producers of your favorite works - and also learn about the process of how it’s all made. It’s a 3 day fandom party for nerds and geeks of all types.

Registration for attendees, artists, and exhibitors is now open and you guys figured out it was open before I launched and are already registering I love you guys!
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Yesterday I lost my day job. Company had to make some cuts (I'm not the only one who lost his job). Turns out HES was also scheduled to go on a 50% sale yesterday but I forgot about it ... So if you were waiting to get this game now is probably the best time to get it, both because of the price and well, my situation. Any sharing of this is more than welcomed.
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It's possibly a scam, but I got word that my Skype password changed.  I changed it again on the site directly.  (Naturally I didn't click the email.)

I've never used my Skype account and don't even have the software installed anymore.  If there's a call, it's not from me.  I wouldn't care, but I lurk in multiple live streams with call-ins.
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What do all of these bots get from spamming invites to Google+ porn communities?  I can understand posts on their profiles linking to sites they control, but why bother with pictures uploaded here?  Is there some form of steganography to be aware of?
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I don't think they really thought it all out. They just have some budget for "promotion" and they use it for that, because it doesn't cost them much.
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Here's some screenshots of the procedural shmup I've been working on.  Frankly, it looks much better in action with the scrolling clouds and effects.  However, that will have to wait for a video.  (I tried to make GIFs, but I failed to get nice results from the tools I tried.)  I'd prefer to have the audio included before that happens.  Hopefully at least one of these is good enough for #screenshotsaturday .

Gall of the Thrall is a single stick shooter which allows pivoting when the fire ("Maul") button is released.  Rather than being endless like many procedural shmups I've played, the player is given a choice after every level to turn back.  Once turning back, the player must survive as many levels as they completed before the choice was made.  Losing all lives results in a game over and total score loss.  There are no extends.  The player must gauge their own skill and learn when to turn back.

Each level lasts a mere minute and features overlapping waves of enemies.  When a wave is gone, another of increased difficulty replaces it.  The rate of difficulty increase grows with each level.

To compensate for the unpredictable/overlapping patterns, an enemy's bullets are cancelled when it is destroyed.  Meanwhile, the player has a special weapon, called a Trawl, that shoots outward and, on the return trip, does damage to enemies/bullets.  Activating the Trawl while it is already in play teleports the player to its position.

The player's shape and turrets are procedurally generated.  I've been calling the shape a "special snowflake", but the front of the ship is hard to determine in stills so it might need some tweaking.  Theme-wise, it's probably a gallstone the titular thrall yanked out of their own body and threw in frustration.

Similarly, the enemies are all randomly generated masks with their own mouths and multiple eye holes.  They're supposed to be like the Pall in my previous MeanderGall game, but it's not like anyone will grok the reference.  Some other enemies might be needed for variety, but these seem to be doing the job.
Andre La Barre's profile photoHuskies Plays (Huskies709)'s profile photo
I like this. :)
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I am ACWraith. When not procrastinating, I create games (or used to).

I used to perform unpaid volunteer work for BYOND (and occasionally still update their Facebook page). Once upon a time, I also handled featured games and wrote the link digests Along The Tech Tree and BYOND and Within.  Both of the latter were revised on my Gamasutra blog with questionable relevance.

I don't join social networks to fret over my privacy.  I likely won't post often enough to spam your stream, but be aware that my outgoing messages will tend to be unfiltered.  File me away in whatever circle you see fit.
  (I do add circle tags should Google ever allow people to subscribe to those instead of people.)

My apologies to those I circle if they get annoyed by notification spam.  I tend to catch up on Google+ posts during the weekend so all of my ratings/replies come in a short time period.
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February 2
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Andre La Barre's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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