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I’ve been enjoying reading all day, so I’ll join in. I’m an ex-Unity developer doing an indie game. I started in the game industry about 20 years ago as an artist and recently co-organized the Game AI North conference in Copenhagen. I’m almost always happy to talk about art and code, and if you get me talking about making tools that empower creativity (specifically design for user/tool co-adaptation and artificial intelligence) I probably won’t shut up.

Oh, and for 2018 I have a request - if there is anything that I can do to help you achieve your goals this year, let me know. Reach out and let me know, and I'll see what I can do to help!

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So there are 3.5 hours to go here in 2017... dinner is done and we're having cocktails. Happy New Year to you - wishing you a fantastic '18!

It becomes difficult to write a serious recommendation for a friend when you start with "After awhile, yeh come to expect that when a man walks around town callin' hemself a 'coder', he might know a code er two. But I'll be damned if the kid don't know all the codes... an' when to use 'em too." and then all subsequent attempts at being serious are voiced by 'the Stranger' from the Big Lebowski in your head. Hmmm... Saturday December 30th... I think I may be spent for the year.

So I would say that I am against violence in games — but that it is less about blood and bullets than it is about Derrida’s Nietzschean take on narrative interpretation. Unfortunately, ESRB ratings don’t cover “perpetuates a world-view built on inherent conflict and the will to power.” 4/4

In part, this is an aesthetic objection to formulaic plots from writers who are intepreting Campbell literally in an attempt to quantify and concretize their narrative — arriving at a something that is violent is unavoidable when forcing your way through all 12 stages of the Hero’s Journey. On a deeper level, though, my objection is rooted in the fundamentally violent nature of western narrative structure and the manner in which that shapes how we interpret and interact with the world. 3/4

I accept the case for violence when it comes to game mechanics (pragmatically: low fidelity input, quantifiable progress, binary outcome, etc.) and themes (eg. as a didactic element, an interrogative tool, or simply for grounding in reality). I am, however, less forgiving when it comes to violent narrative. 2/4

Ok, multi-toot rant (sorry) — I was thinking about violence in video games. It is a topic that comes up from time to time, and invariably, as someone making video games, you are asked for your opinion (or to justify your work.) So here is my opinion: 1/4

Did you notice? We recently updated our website with some of the content from

While a bunch of content is still pending approval by the various studios, a good chunk of slide decks and presenter notes are available for download right now:

This autumn, we hosted a game AI conference in Copenhagen (Game AI North). You should check out the slides from our amazing speakers:

For the macOS-able people suffering under the unfortunate SourceTree “upgrade” history: Fork!

Free in beta - assuming evil monetisation once it has ensnared enough of us.

Not fully featured yet, certain teething annoyances - like no option to show text output of commands (so progress of un-integrated features like LFS is pure guesswork).

No windows build out, but one is planned (supposedly, possibly, maybe - here why don’t you let us spam your email?).

Let's try some "we'll probably make it through 2017" gifts.

Do you need a book, a course, an app, a workshop, github account, hosting, or something else that would help you?

Something in $50-$100 range; ping me (direct message or email "aras at nesnausk dot org") and I'll try to do it!

Considering how similar the genres are, there is an inexplicable absence of Computer Science / Horror mashup literature.

"Night after night he wandered the managed heap, haunted by the ghosts of friends and lovers who had long ago been reclaimed. And though he had met others over the endless cycles of relocation and compacting, he knew that he was truly alone — cursed never to feel the sweet embrace of garbage collection."

Hmmm. I was expecting to get taken to school on camera projections on that — it seems like something anyone implementing a 3rd person controller would hit. Although, I guess the dozen or so examples I've seen all fail at this, so maybe off-center 3rd person characters is an edge case?

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Last weekend, I tried to map a stick to movement for an off-center object and it was more complicated than expected: I had a point in the world and I wanted world-space vectors corresponding to screen-space directions while compensating for the camera’s projection. (So that if I were to draw a ray along them it would form a perfect screen-space “+”, even off-center). I got it working with a game jam level of efficiency, but now I’m wondering… what is the right way to do this?

Why are the names of types of calculus often preceded by the word "the" (eg. "the lambda calculus")? This seems... inconsistent with the appropriate use of the definite article.

Oh nice, Mastodon supports 2FA.

Enable it everyone!

So, no Ludum Dare entry from me — the theme never resonated — but it was a good experience and I was able to totally validate a mechanic that has been rattling around in the back of my head for ages. So, after nearly 48 hours building a prototype, it is time to archive the project and put the idea on ice until real-life current stuff has shipped. For everyone still doing the jam: good luck.

random thought before I crash for the evening... I still don't think any modern console UI comes close to touching the original Xbox dashboard. It made it feel like I was booting up some awesome alien technology in my living room, not some generic vanilla "media" OS. If ever there was a UI that had an excuse to go all in trying to delight and excite users, it is on a gaming console. In that one way, the first Xbox nailed it.

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