michael puskas

Vector Art

Here’s a few pieces of vector art that I made.   The main goals were to practice in vector art applications like Illustrator and Toonboom Harmony, and to gain some skill with art in general.   I never drew much as a kid, so this was my first chance to start exploring the field. I […]

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The UX of Fiend’s text-based gameplay

One aspect of UX is finding the least offensive way to present good ideas.   What I mean by that is: the ideal way for a system to be presented to a user would be to magically form a direct two-way connection between their brain and the computer. Since we can’t do that, we’ve developed […]

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Creative solutions in UE4 framework building

In deciding on an engine for Fiend, my biggest concern was for what experience would be the most useful. I eventually decided on Unreal Engine 4, a partially open-source engine that traffics predominantly in C++. I figured that gaining experience in the workings of a professional game development engine, while also gaining lots of C++ […]

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Tracking my IF experiences

I play most games through Steam, so I’ve had an easy time keeping track of what I’ve played. I recently started getting into IF though, which doesn’t have a nice central library. To help myself remember what I’ve played and who made it, I’m going to keep this list up to date.   IF that […]

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Edith Finch: Follow-up to Gorogoa

Quick follow-up to yesterday’s Gorogoa post.   I just finished What Remains of Edith Finch, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Whereas Gorogoa didn’t have anything to teach anyone, Finch definitely has something that it wants you to internalize (appreciation of life), and it gives you plenty of time in well-told stories to do so. It didn’t […]

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Gorogoa and Meaning in games

I’ll skip an introduction to the game since there’s plenty of that around. Watch a video or read the opening paragraph to any review (or play it, it’s short), then we can talk about it.   I spent 95 minutes with Gorogoa, during which I was thoroughly delighted, but not-at-all affected. While there’s nothing wrong […]

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Doctor Dekker and practicing skills in games

Games promote play, play promotes the practicing of skills. I was first introduced to this definition in A Theory of Fun for Game Design, and I’ve found the consideration of skills to be useful for encouraging lateral thinking while designing my own game. I’ve also found it valuable to analyze other games through this lens, […]

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Research for Horror Writing

A pivotal moment near the beginning of my game-in-construction involves a group of kids telling each-other scary stories around a campfire. I have rarely been a fan of horror books and movies, so I have decided to undergo an exploration phase before proceeding with writing and development.   Through a reading of Stephen King’s “Danse […]

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Building a complex text display system in UE4

    For the past 9 weeks, I’ve been working on a text adventure in Unreal Engine 4 (Why UE4, you ask? You’ll have to wait until it comes out to see.) Today, I am finally calling the systems/framework complete, and can progress onto the writing stage. Before I do that however, I wanted to […]

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Starting on wireframes!

To gain experience with interaction and graphic design tools, I’ve started to make wireframes of popular websites. My first was Google’s front page which is already posted, and I’m currently working on Duolingo’s front page. I’ve been using Inkscape for vector graphics, Gimp for raster graphics, and Axure for designing the actual wireframes.   I’m […]

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