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The NES lives!

In my quest to think up more mini games for Brain Party, I've been looking at the old 8-bit consoles -- a top source of ideas for simple but still entertaining gamelets. Meandering around in Argos last weekend, I came across the N-Joypad, a dinky little battery powered 'TV game' device for the astonishing price of £9.99. Claiming to have 59 games on 'compact discs', the machine's box is plastered with screenshots of basic games with NES-ish graphics, and describes the 'awesome' entertainment contained inside.

100% more brain power

Mike and I have had a busy weekend of... yes, you guessed it: programming! Brain Party is fantastically fun to work with, and, to a growing extent, fantastically fun to play too.

When I posted my last blog entry there were four mini games to play: colour sorting, Dance Dance Revolution, Whack-a-mole and Trout Blaster. It's now five days later and, my friends, we have fifteen minigames that are ready to play. That puts us over a quarter of our way towards our launch goal of fifty minigames!

King of Cool

That is a compliment indeed coming from Andrew Gregorian Chant Esq. Although I must admit, Mike does look great in his suit - more Don Corleone than Don Johnson I reckon. Mike also has a strange look in his eye that reminds me a little of the Rabbit of Caerbannog



I still wear my Linux Format T-shirt with pride. Oh yes!

Mike-ami Vice

Mike, like many geeks I fear, usually wears all black; is very sunshine-averse and seems to subsist on a diet of jalapeno crisps, burgers and beer. Not only does he remember a host of obscure eighties computer games, he can tell you who wrote the music; he's even writing his own operating system. In machine code.


Rather than go out into the sunshine during my lunch break, I did some Brain Party hacking. Fixed some bugs, added the code to make windows movable by clicking on the titlebar and dragging, and, in 20 minutes flat, wrote a Trout Wars minigame in 128 lines of code.

Brain Party minigame: Trout Wars returns!


Having a Brain Party

As I mentioned before, Graham, Mike and I are working on a cross-platform, multiplayer puzzle game written in C# and backed by SDL. This is my second major project using SdlDotNet, so it's a very comfortable environment for me to be programming in - code just seems to fly out to make things happen. But, as always, I spot a few niggles where I stray into new territory.

Before I talk about the niggles, I want to tell you a bit more about the Brain Party project.

How’s your day goin?

Conference Center

Fine. Thanks. And how's yours? It's goin' great thank you. Yep. My propa English has slipped, and I'm going American. It took about 5 minutes before I started to say 'Can I get?' rather than my regular 'Could I have?' I now say 'sure', and when I asked for a cinnamon scone with my Starbucks this morning, I tried the local dialect, 'Can I get a sco'wune with that?' Sure thing.

Before the frenzy begins

Graham is in Merka and has promised to make numerous blog posts about his experience. I haven't blogged for quite a while, so I figured I'd best get in quick before his posting frenzy begins.

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