The Blue Star

November 15, 2007 at 9:03 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hello everyone, this is my first official post here at Leeble Forest.  I created this blog with the intention of keeping tabs on myself.  You see… I’ve finally decided to make my own RPG.  And if you are a fellow designer, then you know how much work goes into one of those.  And given that I’m a contractor and I have to set my own hours, it’s really important for me not to slack off… otherwise it’ll never get finished… and if you know me… well… you know me. 

Anyways… I’ve had this story for a while now, but I wasn’t sure what to do with it. I kept adding onto it here and there, thinking that I might turn it into a novel or something. I imagined it would make a pretty good video game, but given that I’m not much of a programmer I didn’t go down that route at first. Recently however, George suggested that I try out RPG maker. He said that using it is similar to making Starcraft maps (triggers and events), and that the main scripting language (Ruby) is like C++. I programmed a bit back at Berkeley, so I figured it might be good for me to work with. 

So for the past couple months I’ve been learning about pixel art, going through my notes in order to fully type out my story (close to 200 pages), attempting to transfer my character sketches to the computer, and learning about the program. It’s a lot of work; which I suppose is pretty obvious… making a tileset can take like 30 hours if you do it all by hand. I don’t have a wacom, so I sit there hunched over the computer, delicately moving the mouse back and forth to get every pixel into place. Thankfully, a lot of template art is included with the program so I plan to use some of it as a placeholder until things get more underway. Then I can devote some time to replacing sprites and backgrounds once I get a feel for how it should look.

One of the more refreshing things for me to do is the music. In fact, a lot of times I’ll be doing a music or SFX assignment for work and I’ll take a break to arrange a piece that I think would match a section in my own game. It’s nice because that way I don’t spend too long on any particular project so I can be more creative. I told one of the designers at Tikgames that I was working on an RPG and he immediately warned me “Those things are a lot of work!”

I’m also learning about the world of forums, which I know nothing about. I joined a Cakewalk forum a couple years ago because I had a question about synchronization, but besides that, I’ve never been in one. In fact, it’s quite foreign to me. I got warned for “double posting” because I wasn’t sure how to reply to someone’s comment… I treated it as if it were a livejournal comment, but apparently that’s not how it works, haha. The people there are very helpful though. If you post a question, you’ll usually get a response within 24 hours. I really appreciate that, so I’m making a point to try and answer other people’s questions if I’m ever able to (with my now limited knowledge). I don’t understand the whole point of guild systems though… perhaps I’ll learn more as time goes on.

I’ve decided to start this journal specifically for “The Blue Star” (which is possibly the temporary name for this game). I’ve come to realize that this will be a huge project, and if I intend to finish it within a reasonable period of time I need to establish goals and deadlines, and keep myself on track. So I will be posting fairly often about my progress. I hope to include things like sample music, screenshots, character bios, etc. This project is fastly becoming my new hobby; I’m really excited about it.


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