Market Pack Vol. 1 | SMILE GAME BUILDER
Posted in Assets News & Updates

Market Packs Update 2022

Many of you are no doubt aware of my Hi-Tex Market Pack assets. For those who aren’t, these are high-texture assets I created to implement a kind of hybrid medieval market in your games as part of my ongoing "Hi-Tex" range for Smile Game Builder (SGB).

Although first released in 2020, and updated in 2021, I decided to update them again in 2022. This means improved textures and meshes, as well as more varied content. And, as development continues, I plan on releasing several packs throughout the year to complete the set.

Deferred Release Dates

Previously planned releases of the Market Pack Volumes 1 and 2 (and its add-on packs) were deferred several times. The main reason for this may be due to the "perfectionist" in me. That’s a good thing or a bad thing depending on your perspective. I wanted to ensure that all packs are completely optimized and SGB-friendly.

The Market Pack Vol. 1, Market Pack Vol. 2 and Market Pack Signs Add-On are complete and are prizes for AmalgamAsh’s SGB Returners Game Jam 2022. That means their release dates right now are imminent, having satisfied my personal "quality control". Haha!

Various Changes

With expandability in mind, I also restructured the models’ naming conventions. In addition, each type will have its own category:

  • Market Stalls – The main market stall components.
  • Market Items – Decorative models, such as barrels and crates.
  • Stall Contents – Items that fit into or on the market stalls’ counters.
  • Container Liquids – The liquids (water, wine, etc.) that fill the containers.
  • Terrains – Various terrains befitting a market place.

I know this’ll mess things up for those who already purchased the original pack and installed the models in SGB and I apologize! I decided to do it this way primarily to make it easier when it comes to add-ons and expansions. However, everything is now more organized and easier to pick and choose the models.

Notes on Market Terrains

The Market Pack Vol. 1 contains several terrains (including matching stairs and slopes) from the original pack. I’m rather dissatisfied with them, but included them in the pack nevertheless.

Future terrain packs tailored to the market theme will be sold separately.

Future Packs and Add-Ons

As far as future packs and add-ons, I’ll continue creating them for awhile until I move onto other things and other projects proper.

Market Pack Vol. 1 | SMILE GAME BUILDER
Posted in Assets News & Updates

Market Pack Update to v1.2 Log #2

Market Pack Vol. 1 v1.2 — Release Date

Optimization on v1.2 of the Modular Market Pack Vol. 1 is nearing completion. I deferred its original November release because I’d like to make sure this pack is as optimized as possible, especially with expandability in mind (for future packs).

The purpose of this update – as mentioned in Log #1 – is to:

    • Optimize textures to fix any incongruities and make sure they’re less "rough around the edges".
    • Optimize and properly triangulate meshes (models) for better compatibility with Smile Game Builder, and possibly conversion to other engines, such as Unity and Unreal Engine.
    • Ensure that its overall theme – a kind of medieval hybrid – is consistent throughout.

And with expandability in mind, I also restructured the models’ naming conventions. In addition, each type will have its own category:

  • Market Stalls – The main market stall components.
  • Market Items – Decorative models, such as barrels and crates.
  • Stall Contents – Items that fit into or on the market stalls’ counters.
  • Container Liquids – The liquids (water, wine, etc.) that fill the containers.

I know this’ll mess things up for those who have already purchased the pack and installed the models in SGB and I apologize! I decided to do it this way primarily to make it easier when it comes to add-ons and expansions. Everything is more organized and easier to pick and choose the models.

Market Pack Vol. 1 — Add-On

The Market Pack Vol. 1 — Add-On is designed to expand the Market Pack Vol. 1 with additional models and variations on existing models. I have no set release date yet, as I’m still working on it.

I’d like to continue adding to the market until it’s as comprehensive as possible. This will continue well into 2022 before I retire from SGB and move onto other things.

Market Pack Vol. 1 | SMILE GAME BUILDER
Posted in Assets News & Updates

Market Pack Update to v1.2 Log #1

Market Pack Vol. 1 – Update v1.2

The Market Pack Vol. 1 is receiving a major update. I decided to do this before expanding the series further.

The main goal of this update is to optimize the models and textures, especially with consistency and proper alignment in mind.

Update v1.2 Release Date

I have no set release date in mind, although I’d ideally like to finish this before the end of November.

Other Expansion Packs

For the following expansions, I’m aiming for a December/Xmas release:

  • Market Pack Vol. 1 Add-On (further expanding Vol. 1)
  • Signs Vol. 1 (attaching to the front of the market stalls)

Over time, I’ll also start creating some stall "clutter" for each type of merchant.

Quietus v0.3.7 | SMILE GAME BUILDER
Posted in News & Updates

Quietus: Psychobiography – A look at the Quietus 0.3.7 UPDATE

AmalgamAsh‘s "progressive updates" review of Quietus v0.3 (which he’s conveniently cited as v0.3.7) is on YouTube.

Watch the Video

On the Points Made

Addressing some of Ash’s points, I overlooked the "missing" desk, but will resolve in the next version.

For now, I won’t create custom models, using the default models and others’ assets instead. I currently have an unresolved and unresolvable issue with Blender to SGB, which has me stumped!

A final point: Quietus IS my primary focus. Development on Quietus will supersede development on Enigma of the Wulf and Otherworld: Through the Veil. Incidentally, plans to migrate the latter to the Unreal Engine are underway.

Working on Quietus is actually a form of "bereavement creativity", a kind of catharsis, especially after my Dad’s and Grandfather’s deaths, as many elements in the game being actual events, incidents, emotions, and memories, etc. in my own life. It isn’t a life story, but rather a "psychoanalysis", defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as:

A method of analyzing psychic phenomena and treating emotional disorders that involves treatment sessions during which the patient is encouraged to talk freely about personal experiences and especially about early childhood and dreams.

Version 0.4

I have no release date timeframe for v0.4, although the goal is within the next two weeks (at the time of this post).

Bearing in mind, I work 4 nights now, which means 3 days to work on Quietus’s development.

Major Changes to the SGB Athenaeum
Posted in News & Updates

Major Changes to the Athenaeum!

Regular visitors to the SGB Athenaeum will have noticed some significant changes to the site, noticeably its new layout. Over time, I’ll change its theme (once I’ve settled on something that works).

Menu Changes

While most of the main navigation menu will remain intact, the SGB Tutorials and SGB Assets pages will be tweaked.

Site Updates

Updates to the site have definitely been lacking.

I definitely aim to change that, especially with regular new Smile Game Builder content being produced by Amalgamash and others.

As an additional note: Many of the posts do not have thumbnails. That means that, with this new theme, they’ll appear as a gray box. If I find the time I’ll update them, but will create them for each post from now on.

Posted in News & Updates

Odysee: New Video Platform for My Videos

I’m excited to announce my presence on Odysee to host my videos.

What Is Odysee?

Subscribe to My Odysee

You can subscribe to my Odysee to watch any videos and tutorials I create.

Odysee is a video hosting platform similar to YouTube and, perhaps, a viable alternative to YouTube.

In fact, it acts as a mirror for your YouTube account, but you can also upload your own videos. Additionally, you can create multiple channels more easily than YouTube instead of having one channel and several playlists.

That means that if anything happens to my YouTube Channel, there will be a backup available.

Plans for Odysee

I plan on still uploading to my YouTube account, which is syncronised with Odysee so new videos should also update there.

Additionally, I’m going to upload Odysee exclusive videos, including tutorials and game update videos, starting some time this month!

Phone Custom Menu for SMILE GAME BUILDER
Posted in Game Development News & Updates

Phone Custom Menu for SMILE GAME BUILDER

One of the side-projects I’ve been working on is a "useable phone", where you can call a phone interface and select its apps to toggle certain settings ON or OFF (such as Party Train) and call certain functions (such as the Save Menu) from within SMILE GAME BUILDER.

Development History

SGB Phone Custom Menu
SGB Phone Custom Menu
While development initially began more as an experiment for a unique icon-driven custom menu, I quickly realised how much it resembled a cellphone layout, with all its apps neatly laid out on-screen.

So I began redesigning the layout and interface to look more like a typical cellphone. And I began planning which features could be used as apps.

Although it’s still a work-in-progress, I will continue work on it over time. There are plenty of bugs and some of the routines don’t quite function as intended, so I still have a long way to go before a fully functioning phone custom menu.

Some app functions, such as the Equipment and Jukebox, may not be viable or achievable, so they might need removing or replacing.

Custom Menu Online Classes/Tutorials

At the end of July to the beginning of August, I’m going to start work on a series of courses or online classes dedicated to creating custom menus for SMILE GAME BUILDER, which will be available on the Gnome Treasure store.

During the course, you’ll learn how to create unique custom menus from start to finish, from a simple "settings menu" to something more complex like the phone custom menu.

I’m not sure of pricing or format yet, but that’ll develop over time, and I’ll make the announcements here and on Twitter.

Posted in News & Updates

SMILE GAME BUILDER Update Version 1.12.5

SMILE GAME BUILDER has been updated to Version 1.12.5. Unfortunately, I haven’t had much time to do a proper showcase video on this yet.

Posted in Game Development News & Updates

Game Development News
Starborn: The Fallen & Relationship Sim

Those who follow me on social media already know about the various projects I’m working on, including my games.

Various Game Engines

I’ve tried my hand at various genres and storylines, inculding a quasi-biographical game entitled Confluction, but none of them really progressed beyond initial concept. There are numerous reasons behind this, but the main one seems to be that they haven’t felt "right".

In addition, I’ve been experimenting with various game engines for some time now, including RPG Maker, Unity, GameMaker, Axis Game Factory, and GameGuru. And, of course, SMILE GAME BUILDER.

In a recent announcement on the SGB Discord, I stated:

Game development on "Starborn: The Fallen" will most likely migrate to GameGuru MAX (official release September) and development on "Relationship Sim" will be for SMILE GAME BUILDER.

My problem is that I have so many ideas bouncing around in my head and not enough time to implement them all. This then becomes fingers-in-too-many-pies syndrome and none of the games actually reach completion. So to resolve this, I started looking closer to topics I’m interested in and conversant with, and eventually settled on a theme.

The next goal was to determine which engine to use for the overall feeling and outcome. I settled on SMILE GAME BUILDER for "Relationship Sim" (a previously planned but now resurrected game idea) and GameGuru MAX for "Starborn: The Fallen".

Why GameGuru MAX? Why Not Unity?

Someone in Discord asked why I’d use GameGuru MAX for Starborn: The Fallen rather than Unity or the Game Creator asset for Unity (interpretably haughtily).

My answer was probably rather terse, so I thought I’d expand it here. What I won’t do here is extol GameGuru MAX’s virtues or lament its drawbacks.

Now I responded that I wanted to try something different. Since I’ve been using GameGuru (not necessarily intending to produce a game with it) on and off for awhile, I saw the potential for a small yet simple horror-style game because of its post-effects, like lighting. Furthermore, some of the models in the add-on packs were (are) perfect for this purpose.

However, as before the "feeling" just wasn’t there, so the motivation dwindled. I continued creating the maps for the game – sometimes from scratch, sometimes randomly generating landscapes – and soon realised that some of the maps bore a striking resemblance to those in Starborn. This was purely subconscious; I wasn’t planning on it.

This then prompted me to delve further into GameGuru as a whole. Although I still need to learn its programming language, Lua, it is more lightweight than the C# that Unity predominantly uses and, while not primarily an object-orientated programming (OOP) language, primary classes and tables can be used to store data and create objects. I wrote a very simplistic script to store some basic information for an equally basic quest log (admittedly partially functional and very buggy).

Completely by accident, I saw a trailer for GameGuru MAX so decided to preorder it in February and recently received the first alpha release. This seriously lacks in actual content but it is a vast improvement on its predecessor, with a better, more intuitive interface and a built-in character creator. I even tried importing some of my own hi-tex models into the engine and was impressed with the results.

So, I made that executive decision to migrate Starborn to GameGuru MAX. I’ll continue working on the game (intermittently) until its official release in September.

Relationship Sim (SMILE GAME BUILDER)

And I will resume development on my SGB game, "Relationship Sim", which I started some time ago. This was loosely based on and inspired by an old tutorial I did, #16: Relationship System.

I particularly like those kinds of games where choices matter and actions have consequences, which result in multiple endings based on those choices.

Relationship Sim is no exception in that you can follow the path of faithful boyfriend or cassanova. Each path has a different outcome and different influences on other characters.

Susbsequently, the "relationship system" is potentially quite complex. SGB’s limitations at the time became one of the major reasons the project was placed on hold. Now, with some of the newest additions (notably displaying text as images and string variables), it’s more viable to create a specific HUD style without having to rely exclusively on graphics for names, relationship status, etc.

My SubscribeStar patrons will also gain access to "mature" or "adult" content. This won’t be sexual in nature, not gratuitous but more inferred, and it’ll be optional content for those who want it.

With that said, I’m going to start development on Relationship Sim from scratch, expanding upon and improving its old system to accommodate the new updates.

Development Updates

Working on both projects at once – plus my tutorials, my model packs and live-streaming – will demand much of my time, but with proper micro-management of time I should be able to juggle them successfully.

Although there won’t be updates on Starborn: The Fallen until September (when it’s officially launched), updates on Relationship Sim will be posted on social media and in the SGB Discord.

Posted in News & Updates

Merry Xmas/Happy 25th December 2019

There is no new SMILE GAME BUILDER tutorial until after Christmas 2019. However you celebrate it – and even if you don’t – have a happy 25th December!

Lots of changes coming in 2020, including to game development, YouTube (and Daily Motion/BitChute) and other game dev areas, more assets next year.

Merry Xmas 2019