Monday, September 26, 2011

Calling GamesRadar - Are you listening?

I use the GamesRadar API as part of the engine behind my Video Game Scanner app. While it has been a very reliable component, I have began to notice a couple of things that worry me a bit. The first is that no new platforms have been added to the API. Most recently, I have been unable to add support for the Nintendo 3DS. With the PS Vita coming soon and inevitably next-gen home consoles on the horizon, this could become a really big issue. Second, some of the links returned are stale. For my use case, this means that cover art and article thumbnails are not working.

While I understand that the API is free to use, it is a great tool that I would hate to see fade into oblivion. Surely they make some money off the ads when an application using the API redirects a user to the website, so there should be some vested interest in keeping things working. I have tried to reach out for answers through the user forums and e-mail but have not had any luck.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Video Game Scanner Published on the Android Market

I decided to take a break from Marble Memory to work on another app idea that I had. Before pulling the trigger on those impulse video game purchases, you can use it to pull information by scanning the barcode. I am utilizing the great ZXing app to perform the scanning. Platform support includes Nintendo Wii, DS, Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and PSP. Happy scanning! :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Marble Memory Updated - Let There Be Sound!

A new version (1.0.2) of Marble Memory has been posted on the market. Changes include:

- Sound effects for various events in the game

- When the reset option is selected from the menu, a confirmation dialog is presented rather than just nuking your progress

I also accidentally removed the app from the market this morning when trying to push out the update before work. All should be well now.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Marble Memory Updated - A Couple of Bug Fixes

While trying the app out on a Galaxy S phone, I noticed a couple of bugs that I wanted to fix pretty quickly:

- I spawn a separate thread to highlight the block sequence prior to starting a level. If a new level was started prior to the thread finishing, seemingly random blocks would be highlighted. The previous thread is now interrupted before starting a new sequence animation.

- The intro and level dialog text was a little crowded on higher resolution screens. I added some spacing here to help this out.

Version 1.0.1 is now posted on the market.

Marble Memory Published on the Android Market

This morning I released my first app on the Android Market, Marble Memory. This project started when I was just dorking around with some accelerometer sample code. Before I knew it I was adding basic collision detection and state logic. I am really not expecting too much from this as it is the first "game" I have ever written on any platform, but I wanted to prove to myself that I could stick through a personal project to the end. :)

The premise is pretty easy to pick up. A number of blocks are displayed in random locations, and it is your job to crash into them chronologically. Once you touch the screen to begin the numbers disappear, so it is up to you to study and remember the order.

All of the sources I read indicate that seven is the magic capacity for the average human short-term memory, with nine being on the high end. Once you hit level ten a help block will appear that displays the block order for a short amount of time. You do have to pay a penalty for using it though. An extra block will be added (unless you have not hit one) and the block order will be reshuffled.

I have some ideas for additional game modes, so if I get a couple of users that enjoy the app I will spend some time working on them.