<![CDATA[Sean Weiland... - Bloggity Blog]]>Thu, 15 Feb 2018 16:11:57 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[So Many Cons!]]>Thu, 10 Sep 2015 01:10:05 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/so-many-consI have been to lots of cons this year. This last 2 weeks I was back to back at Saikoucon and DragonCon. I spoke at both events and had fantastic crowds at each. 
Still coming up:

MAG Classic in DC. 
Atlanta Anime Expo
SIEGE in Atlanta

...Then I think I finally get a brake, because if I don't go to any more, that'll be 14 for the year ;-O

<![CDATA[The Levels of Steamalot]]>Sat, 18 Apr 2015 19:44:41 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/the-levels-of-steamalot  There are 43 levels total in Steamalot: Epoch's Journey. They were put together tile by tile, summoning point by summoning point. They are all view-able below and all except the boss battle level (level 42) are available to play in pvp. 
  I didn't think about it until we started work on the follow up to Steamalot (Gasp! YES it's really happening), but a lot of time, testing, and reworking went into these levels. They had to be challenging vs AI or vs human opponents who could be playing from either start point. With a 7x9 grid they also had to have enough variety between them to justify the number of levels we have in the game. This came doing to trying to adapt certain levels to play to movement and attack styles of different characters that appear in different parts of the game. You can also see how I changed the locations of spawn points to change the entire way a board is approached. This really helped us save on size for mobile games as well. 
  I hope you find it interesting, and give the game a shot. It's un-named sibling will have bigger boards with 3D assets ;-)
<![CDATA[Discussing Game Immersion at Game Loop Philly]]>Fri, 20 Jun 2014 03:18:10 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/discussing-game-immersion-at-game-loop-philly  At Game Loop Philly I had the chance to lead a discussion on theatre principles and how they can work with game immersion. The interest for me in this topic stems from a general belief that theatre production can inform game production. I have been working on a series of papers and lectures with a friend of mine (a ridiculous immersion expert) and this seemed like the perfect place to work shop the core concepts we've been working with. 
  Game Loop is a very relaxed un-conference where everyone votes on topics and the top 25 or so happens during the day. The talk was approved and I went in super jazzed that local devs and soon-to-be developers had at least some interest in theatre and game immersion. What surprised me when I started to introduce basic kinds of game immersion and their counter parts in theatre, was how many people didn't know the basic kinds of immersion. I quickly got through why theatre is a viable industry to pull from and a few examples of how development or design principles ( audience placement, method acting, theatre games, etc.) can be applied to games. All head nods and interest. What came next was confusing and encouraging. 
  The discussion and questions turned to deeper explanations of what immersion is. People were asking if games only use one kind (no). Its often layered, and good games that really grab you take you through those layers so smoothly that you barely notice it. I was asked why if general immersion is just being sucked into a game, why there are more defined types then. "Well, when you are designing an experience you need to break it down into different parts and see where users are being removed from the game. Then you account for sections that aren't working and find a way to work around it. Naming and defining different kinds of immersion let you better track your research and share it with others." 
  For a while the talk when into a hate fest of the worst things games do to break immersion. It was interesting to hear how much save points, cut scenes, and monitization opportunities came up over and over. The feverish way that people continually tried to define their experience and debate what kind of immersion should happen when was amazing, but also belied a fundamental misunderstanding of why immersion is an important thing to consider. One person actually said they didn't believe that this was a real thing.....
   I can assure everyone that immersion is a real thing. Its what we generically call "getting sucked into a game". Instead of just trying to see if your game is sucking everyone in, we can as game developers, look at our games from a slightly or more refined view and ask "what kind of immersion am I looking for here?" If I wanted someone to be viscerally immersed but they are playing a puzzle game, I might be (way) off the mark. This kind of eye can refine what we do and can take as much or as little effort as we want to put into it. Knowing specifically what it is we are trying to do will eliminate some of the ambiguity of development and make the process easier. That's why knowing types of immersion is important. 
  So I did not get to discuss the confluence of theatre and game immersion as much as I wanted to. I did get a better grasp of the level of knowledge my audience might have when I approach the topic again. I also know there is some fervent interest in the topic and the research will continue!]]>
<![CDATA[This Spring]]>Wed, 15 May 2013 19:59:34 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/this-springIt has been quite the busy spring for me. PAX East, GDC, and finishing our mobile game GGG. It has been quite a rush. 
Cosplaying Cloud Strife at PAXe was amazing. I certainly have not gotten that kind of reaction from attendees while cosplaying before. The 5'6" Buster Sword also really added to the costume. It too 6 months to build and the effort really paid off. 
  Speaking of long build times....Go GO Galago is nearing completion. We have an update on iOS App and Android stores that shows off some of the new artwork and our new dragon fly enemy. In about 2 weeks the complete version of the game will come out with changeable wearable scarfs (some with super powers), as well as regular power upgrades. We are adding narration and storybook cut scenes too. Its going to be a great casual free 2 play game. 
  Finally, PAXe. Oh PAXe. It was my first PAX of any kind. It was very fun and an amazing time. Lots of good costumes and game previews (I got hooked into to a few betas that I'm still playing). I went to a crafting talk, (even though I make cosplay pieces I was skeptical about going). That talk was great as well. I got to see Johathan Coulton live for the first time and I have to say it was amazing. I had a ripping headache and I didn't even care because it was so much fun. I highly recommend 
<![CDATA[The Holidays]]>Mon, 07 Jan 2013 23:36:23 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/the-holidaysWell the holidays were quite a breeze. I got to see lots of family and falter on my diet and exercise routines. But I also got to work on a new game prototype and my partner came out with some new music. The prototype....
I helped a friend work on his prototype game "Sword Stack" through Streamfall studios. A little audio here and some proofreading there. I'm glad to be giving a little help to a very creative fellow. You can try a demo by following a link on the developer FACEBOOK page. OR you can go straight to the DEMO.

My partner and composer also came out with a new album of songs to do yoga by.
<![CDATA[Final GDC Online]]>Mon, 22 Oct 2012 22:51:44 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/final-gdc-onlineI got back last week from the final GDC Online in Austin. I have to say, it was a blast. I had the true pleasure of meeting a ton of great people from fellow CA's to attendees who couldn't be more lively and outgoing. I've been to this conference before, and it could have been that it was the last Austin based event, but something seemed different this time.
  I couldn't thank the volunteer organizers Tim and Barbera enough. They are really wonderful people. It was very apparent how important the event and the volunteer program is to them. I also had great roommates (thanks guys!).
  So what was different? Maybe it was me, but everyone was much more friendly, and open about talking about they do, what I do, and how we are moving forward in the industry as a whole. My favorite parts of the event: The Ultima Online panel, a very cozy expo floor, Team Blizzard and Death Metal Pizza, Being boycotted by Steve, Toasting Goodbye at GingerMan, and Jynga at Recess Barcade.
 I'll miss you GDC Online.
<![CDATA[ Whirlwind]]>Fri, 20 Jul 2012 02:16:03 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/-whirlwindIts been a busy month and a half. We worked on a new iphone game coming out in the fall called The Lost Medallion (based on a tv franchise that is going to full length film). We re-edited the first episode of Princess Zolara (look for that link soon). We also have a couple of possible gigs coming up in the future. I'll post more about those when I'm allowed to ;-).

  The most interesting thing I've recorded since my last post:
Pogs; oh yea, and I can still overturn an entire pile!
<![CDATA[Wizard Con and New Projects]]>Thu, 07 Jun 2012 00:32:41 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/wizard-con-and-new-projectsWell, two months later, I have been a busy man. I have worked on 3 projects and successfully costumed for a Con (yes, I am now one of 'those' people). I continued to work with my friends at Real Dedicated on their new title Get the Flowers Redux. Its about a "gravitationally gifted" woman who collects flowers. Strange premise, but worth a go. Its up on their site now, follow the link on the right.
  I worked on a film that I would rather not talk about, so yeah, that's what happens when ones work is distorted I would rather not claim it as my own. :-(
  Finally: The Lost Medallion game based on the forth coming movie. Super happy with this project so far. The team is great, the IP is fun and geared towards a young audience. I also really enjoyed making the sound fx for the game. Look for this coming out in the fall!
 Oh yes, Wizard Con in Philly was great. I met lots of famous I can now check off my list and had many wonderful photo ops in my....Thor costume. Go ahead, snicker, I lost 3% of my body fat getting read for this and I'm still going. I also made my own hammer :-D
<![CDATA[Philly Tech Week and VO Reels]]>Mon, 09 Apr 2012 04:18:10 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/philly-tech-week-and-vo-reelsHey! Look at that! Another 3 weeks has gone by. Who knew that would happen? As always I've been keeping myself busy. In the audio realm I have been working on a new Real Dedicated iOS project called Pigs and Lasers. There's pigs, lasers, bacon, and mirrors. It was pretty fun making sfx for that. I have also made VO reels for both commercial and games/cartoons and posted them on sound cloud. The reels are here for your listening pleasure. http://soundcloud.com/corlix
  Aquaphobia is coming along and head way has been made in getting the next part of the first set of levels complete. Super excited about that!
  At the end of April is Philly Tech Week and the Grass Roots Game Conference. On Wednesday I will be appearing with a table during the IGDA's Philadelphia Games showcase and representing Double Veh Audio. Mark will not be able to make it, but I will be giving away mustaches in his absence. If you're in the Philly area, be sure to stop by for yours! On Friday I will be at the Expo Unity Lunch Party at WHYY talking about and demoing using Audio in Unity 3D.
<![CDATA[Day 4 of GDC and Aftermath]]>Sun, 11 Mar 2012 04:40:09 GMThttp://seanweiland.com/bloggity-blog/day-4-of-gdc-and-aftermathWhew, I am finally back home. I had a blast GDC, but just as last year I caught the ick. No matter how much emergency, airborn, water, and daily vitamin supplements I pumped through my body, I could still not compensate for 16,000 developers with occasionally questionable hygiene and my sadly unprepared immune system. I have indeed become used to an air filtered studio.
  Well Day 4 of GDC went pretty well. I attended an intel talk in the morning and won an ssd. I caught one more audio talk, on Bastion :-D. It totally made me feel good about my rig and also motivated me to strive to go further with what I am doing now. I had lunch with some friends from UAT and an amazingly good Japanese restaurant across the street from the Convention centre. I should note it was amazing for a restaurant across the street, not as a shining example of Japanese cuisine.
  After lunch I hit up the career pavilion to see if I could actually round up a job before leaving GDC. In all I was pleased with how much people seemed to be looking for freelance audio. I got to chat with a lot of people and made some seemingly good contacts.
  I also toured GDC play to talk with some indy developers who had some very apparent gaps in audio for their games. Notable games I did see: Girl Fight, I know sounds pretty chauvinistic, but when I mentioned it looked like an homage to Dead or Alive he became offended. He was quick to point out that the physics animation that dead or alive likes to employ is not present and the sexuality is much more down played. With thongs and halter tops/bikinis being the main wardrobe for the all female cast this could be debatable. That and the title is girl fight. I have to admit though, it does look like a good fighting game. The mechanics flowed well. There were no pauses or glitches with combat got close or fast or both players were mashing like crazy. The fighters were also fairly varied in styles. I'll probably check it out when it comes out on XBLA, I just think it should be ok to admit that male privilege has been invoked with the game. Other can debate on wither or not that is actually ok, but at least we can admit it when we do it.
  I also have to mention that Car Jack 2 is being made for IOS and I'm super excited for that. I don't know if anyone played the first one, but it's just like the old top down GTA with a few navigation differences. I got to talk with one of the dev team members working on the game and it will be coming out soon. Multiplayer, score boards, and sticking with the low rez style of yesteryear. Why low rez still? Because they can combine that with the power of this and next gen mobile devices to render entire maps at once and eliminate load times on the devices, Woot!
 I finished the day at gdc by realizing I was not just having a scratchy throat, but was totally sick. So I took it easy, downed tons of tylenol cold stuff, and caught the end of the G.A.N.G awards. I was excited to see some people I had caught lectures from during the week be honored. It really was a nice night of awards. There was an after party, but if I went I probably would have just fallen asleep. I went back to my hotel and passed out.
  Now I'm back and have 200 emails to read and about 75 to send :-O!