Snowdown and Prop Addiction and So On

5 12 2007

I’ve got some time to kill before the funeral, so I’m doing my best to keep myself entertained and happy. This is generally a successful process. I had my phases of depression and anger about this early on, and now that it’s over and all that remains is the funeral… I’m actually coping reasonably well. The tension’s gone, and acceptance has settled in. So, let’s discuss (mostly) other things.

Snow hit the local area last night. Not a whole lot, but enough to cause Highway Madnesse… nobody bothered to pre-treat the roads with salt, resulting in commute times six times longer than normal, assuming you can even move, period. It is a disaster, a debacle, and completely expected from the yogurt heads that run things around here. Thankfully I’d arranged telecommuting already so I’m sittin’ pretty. I feel I should have a smug of cocoa or something. Yes, a smug.

I did have a minor depressive bout last night, triggered oddly. I was playing Rock Band, testing out my replacement guitar… and doing very, very badly. It’s annoying. The buttons, the whammy bar, the star power activator, everything is better on the Stratocaster… except the strum bar. Without that click and the feel of it my timing is completely off on my strums. I was doing very badly, but frankly, even if I switch back to the xplorer (and I will be, sigh)… I’m not that great at GH style games anyway. Not nearly enough to take the show on the road online.

So, I busted out the mike to do some vocals online, and was in a number of quickie bands who had absolutely no love for the vocalist. They can’t hear me, they can’t see me, and my only presence in the band is my score at the end… which they were ignoring. I nailed 100% on Dani California for the first time ever, on HARD difficulty, and… they’re busy giving props to the drummer for getting 82%, then three seconds later, are out of the score display screen and on to the next song. I bailed after that (but without a snitfit). Why bother playing if nobody cares? I’ve sung these songs so often that the fun’s a bit tapped from singing them again and again, so if there’s no performance aspect, there’s nothing to offer.

I think, though, my dour turn was more due to lingering ugh over the funeral situation, and the family loss. Keeping spirits up is no easy task, and when you feel small and insignificant in the face of death, feeling small and insignificant in the face of a video game is a tiny reminder of that. Not pleasant.

I decided I’d switch tacks from something I’m only okay at to something I’m good at: SL coding. Making games. I haven’t made a new arcade game in awhile, and was seriously considering packing up and saying that I’m done building them because I had no ideas. So, while en route to the bathroom to take a shower (why is it ALWAYS the bathroom..?) whammo, out of the blue, two viable and workable SL game ideas.

What’s more, a prototype I built in-world after cleansing my filthy form worked like a charm on the first try. I was stunned. I did it on a whim, from a half-baked idea, using a code trick I was pretty sure was made of fail, and it just worked on first compile. That’s insane. And possibly a sign. So, in the weeks ahead, I think I’ll be focusing more on creation and roll out a game or two. My token rally against life’s futility, I suppose.

Oh, and Tin Man was kinda weaksauce. Good concept, good visuals, needed a better writer and director to give it depth and not cliche depth.

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8 responses

5 12 2007
erik_karlsson

Hello Gagne. Forgive me as this has nothing to do with your post but I thought I’d turn to you for help since you’re such a veteran livejournal-blogger.
You see, I’m trying to create a poll for my own livejournal and I can’t manage to get it to work. Nothing happens when one hits the “Submit Poll” button. I just thought I’d check with you if you know what to do. Help would be greatly appriciated indeed. :)
Hope you can help.

5 12 2007
erik_karlsson

Before my previous post, I had not read your entry, but now I have, and you have my sympathy. But I have no doubt that you’ll go through this just fine. Just think in positive ways. One comfort is that she’s in a far better place now.
Being Positive Is A Passion. :)

5 12 2007
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Uh… yeah, kinda critical to read posts before sending 110% unrelated replies…
Sorry, man, I don’t know how to make a poll. Check LJ’s help pages.

5 12 2007
jengagne

I won’t be replying to this again.
Random posts asking people for help when it’s spelled out in LJ help is a tad misguided, dude.
Here’s the FAQ: http://www.livejournal.com/support/faqbrowse.bml?faqid=69&q=poll&view=full
Also, as listed on the main Help page:
http://www.livejournal.com/support/
“If you are using Internet Explorer, you cannot post polls using the poll creator while the Rich Text editor is your default editor. You can click the ‘LiveJournal poll’ button to use the Rich Text poll wizard, or change your settings to “HTML editor” or “whatever I last used” in order to use the poll creator.”
If that doesn’t help, open a support request: http://www.livejournal.com/support/submit.bml

5 12 2007
jengagne

Now, to reply to the actual post rather than the “how do i mine for fish” thread above…
The snow situation was just ridiculous. Traffic was completely blocked in BOTH directions on that little side-road right next to my apartment — I’ve NEVER seen traffic this bad in my life. I did try to drive in, but gave up. I ended up abandoning my car in a parking lot since I couldn’t drive home again… walked home instead. A few other drivers saw me do this and joined me!
And then somebody flipped a car over right outside my neighborhood, to boot. The Powers That Be _claim_ they were pretreating the roads; the radio claims otherwise. Whatever. It’s sure slipperier than I’ve ever seen it with this small quantity on the road.
Anyway. Mood swings are pretty normal for you and considering the situation, even MORE normal. Just expect it and do what you can to level out, yanno? Sounds like GH was a good idea but didn’t turn out so well. Gratz on the voice work on Dani California! I bet you were playing with a group who knew (and only cared about) each other, and you were their pick-up.
Still, I imagine voice is not your #1 interest for Rock Band; your main interest in voice seems to be because it’s what you can do. So yeah, frustration.
Ooooh, SL game code? Tell me all about it when I come over tonight to grab packing items. :D
As for Tin Man… aww. Drat. Bleh. Think we should bother watching the other pieces? (we haven’t seen past the bit we watched with you.) Maybe we can rent it later.

5 12 2007
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

I already deleted it off the tivo… oops. I thought you guys were watching it, so I didn’t think I had to keep a copy.
I’d say don’t bother. It is what it is. A fairly predictable and dully paced melodrama about the lost sister, etc. Some very nice visuals are not helped by the very pedestrian lighting, cinematography, and dare I say it, acting. Zooey is cute but she seems to constantly be too sharp or too flat for the note she needs to hit. It’s really not worth it. Didn’t even have any good steampunkery.

5 12 2007
cmdr_zoom

Zooey’s always cute, but that can’t save an otherwise sub-par production. (Nor can Alan Cumming being, well, Alan Cumming.)
Congrats on your score, and I’m sorry you got snubbed/taken for granted by a pack of asshats.

7 12 2007
keikotakamura

Tin Man was entertaining enough for me. I mean, considering there’s a writer strike (no Daily Show, Colbert Report, or Conan O’ Brien) and Heroes, Torchwood, and Flight of the Conchords are out of season… Tin Man was decent enough to occupy my dinnertime.
The best character by far (IMHO) was Glitch, and he didn’t have enough screen time. Best costume, hands down. The zipperhead with half a brain was the brightest spot in the show.
Second best character was probably the evil sister. Having the mobats come to life from the tattoos on her chest was an excellent excuse for a gratuitous cleavage shot <3
I wish the Tin Man was part cyborg somehow.
I have a beef with DG. She looked the part, but her voice was just so flat. She sounded like Janeane Garafolo with Alzheimer’s.
…And that is my review of Tin Man!

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