Aug 202016

Gaming is a way to relief stress and not think about daily life. Lately, even gaming can’t keep me interested. But my mind is busy all day long with all kinds of stuff, so yesterday I gave mindmapping a try. A mindmap for what is needed to create a gameserver. A server that keeps track of the users, their progress, serves the game itself to the clients, etc. One thing a gameserver needs is a way to store all that data, so a proper database is needed. So I looked at several candidates and in the process I came across Redis. Maybe not the easiest backend database when you need graphing for social features, but absolutely the perfect toy to keep my mind occupied for some time.
Redis has enough client APIs, like most databases. Let’s see if we can use the C#/.Net API from within Unity. Touch/collect this item and increase a value in the Redis database: the XP of the user playing the game.

I will probably create nothing for real, but it’s nice to be not bored for some time.

Jun 272016

Yesterday I started playing Screeps and bought it even when I hadn’t finished the (free) tutorial yet. I mentioned Screeps earlier, and it’s now in an almost ready state. It’s available on Steam.

The game looks simple, but it’s not. As I mentioned before, it is only as good as the code you put into it. You can spawn creeps with certain properties, so they can harvest, or attack, or heal. But unless you run a “program” that actually uses these properties, the creep is not going to do a thing and will die without being of any use to you.
The tutorial teaches you to give a creep a role, and the behaviour of each role will be specified in a javascript file for that role.

You will make mistakes. And I don’t mean mistakes in your code, since the code will only run (of course) when it’s syntactically correct. No, I mean mistakes about how to play the game. A stupidly placed spawnpoint. Choosing a room full of swamp. Forgetting that other creeps will attack you, and you didn’t think of defending your base. Creeps will die (of old age), and you forgot to respawn them. That kind of mistakes. And with each mistake you solve, your code gets better. And meanwhile……you get better at coding!


Oct 292015

Yesterday my server, or to be exact: my domain, was unavailable. I completely missed the expiration emails I received, and did not renew the domain on time. That results in the domain being put in quarantine. But I choose DirectNIC for a reason: they are professional and they are quick. So after contacting them and explaining the situation, paying the neccessary fees and boom….within two hours (including the email exchange and lifting the quarantine status and paying for the whole shebang) my domain is back up again.

Thank you DirectNIC. I’ll be more careful next time (next year!).

In the meantime, when the stress levels were at a peak, I bought two other domains, so now you can reach me on and (!) as well.

Oct 252015

This week I bought StarCraft II: The Complete Edition. Did some campaign in Wings of Liberty and Heart of the Swarm, had an Archon session with my colleague, and today I finally won a 1VAI game, albeit a “very easy” one. But that’s my level at the moment.

To get better, I need to practice. A lot. It’s not like Diablo3 in which your heroes get more powerful by getting better gear, it is me that has to improve. What do I need to build. When do I need to build it. When can I attack. What do I do when I am under attack. And most of all, I need to do that by keyboard preferably, not by clicking around in the build menus.

For now I like the Zerg the most, but I’m warned that it is a difficult race to deal with. One of the advantages is that the larvae can mutate into just about anything, but overall Zerg needs a lot of (micro)managing.

So….practice, practice, practice. And set realistic goals. Play 5 times per day is realistic. Win 5 times a day is not.

Update: just had another win. Ultralisks are nice creatures.

Jan 022015

Just installed Windows Live Writer, to make blogging easier. It imports the current theme properly, so what I’m typing now looks like what will be published, including the dark background etc. Let’s see how this works the coming days.

This is basically a test post.


Dec 212014

It’s the time of the year again, all social media sites and apps are overloaded by it. Still gotta decorate my christmas tree, perhaps tomorrow. All the cards are written, that should count for something 🙂

No snow in the forecasts, but lots and lots of rain and wind/storm. Ah well, we don’t have real snow here anyway, it’s always wet messy shit that ruins your shoes and car.

Enjoy the season, be with friends and/or your family, and cherish what you have.