All posts by Turkey

The great big chance cubes brand update

Topics Discussed

  • Chance Cubes General Updates
  • Chance Cubes The Modpack
  • Integration Mods
  • Twitch Extension
  • Expanding to Fabric and Bukkit
  • Usage stats
  • Final thoughts

Chance Cube General Updates

Chance Cubes is about to go through what is seeming like it’s yearly code evaluation and rewrite and refactor. The focus this time around though is on Profiles and Rewards, specifically allowing for per user rewards and profiles. This means that profiles will now only affect individual players and going to the Nether won’t turn the Nether profile on for everyone. To go along with this and allow for this to work, rewards are now also player specific. Thus each player on the server will be able to have different reward pools! For those of you that only play on single player… Well none of that will affect you, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t get any benefits! While I am doing these changes, I am also addressing current standing issues with profiles and expanding their functionality with new reward settings that can be tweaked and adding more ways in which profiles can be triggered and toggled by in game features. Beyond that, I’m hoping that the overall code restructuring and improvements, well, improve the mod as a whole!

Lastly one side thing to note, Chance Cubes will be looking into a new texture with the 5.0.0 Update! The textures will be scaled down to 16×16 (You’re texture maps will thank you) and will be done by the amazing Valsis who made the current Chance Cubes texture!

Chance Cubes The Modpack

Recently I just wrapped up initial extremely early alpha testing of a modpack that is centered around the Chance Cubes mod. Things actually went pretty well, so I do plan on continuing this in the near future! The Point of this mod pack is two fold; one, to show how flexible and customizable the mod is and how well it can be balanced in the right settings. Two to allow me a really strong testing platform that will test all aspects of the mod. Now especially as I begin the v5.0.0 refactor and rewrite, this mod pack will really allow me to test the new code in a real environment to make sure it’s all working correctly. The pack creation has also helped me think of more options that players may need when customizing the mod. Overall I don’t expect the pack to be anything insane and in the end it’s mainly just a proof of concept and a way for me to prove to everyone what the mod is capable of and how it can be worked and configured.

Integration Mods

This is something that has been requested since the mod first launched. Having some way for Cubes to be auto spawned or dropped when someone subs, gives bits, donates, etc… I have always just differed to having people use other mods, but recently with seeing mods like CCI and Conflux Cubes (The inferior CC mod as I call them ūüėČ sorry Darkhax and Jared) I have been a bit inspired to make my own Stream integration mod to supplement Chance Cubes and provide a very simple, out of the box solution that I also plan to go hand in hand with my planned Twitch extension (More on that in a bit). The point of this mod will not be to replace CCI, but to instead just focus on Chance Cubes and provide a very basic implementation that can be setup very quickly and easily. I would like to add in as many hooks and integrations as possible. Streamers, If you are reading this, feel free to reach out to me and let me know what features and integrations you’d love to see so that I can better plan out the mod!

Twitch Extension

As I alluded to above, I am also planning on developing a twitch extension that will integrate into Chance Cubes. Not really any plans yet on what it will do or how it will work, since I won’t “start” development on it for a little while yet, but it is planned. Why am I doing this? Well one, it’s something new to learn and explore. I’m always interested in working on new things and exploring ways to improve my skills. Recently I’ve been doing some React (JavaScript) work so since there is support for it in Twitch extensions, it’s another way for me to reinforce my learning! In addition to this I will be able to explore new ways to prove Content Creators to interact with their viewers as well as to help improve the base Chance Cubes mod stability and customizability! A smaller reason, but reason none the less (Mostly to be transparent) is to explore more ways of income. Given the nature of Chance Cubes, and my current situation I want to investigate more ways to gain income from Chance Cubes without making people outright pay me to use the mod. Currently Curse Points and Twitch subs/ donations have been the source of my small amount of money made, but I want to look into using bits through the extension to also give me a small cut of bits that people with the extension to spawn the cubes in. Again, this is just exploration for now, but I do want to be as transparent as I can with this stuff. Questions and concerns are always welcome!

Expanding to Fabric and Bukkit

Fabric and Bukkit (or Sponge or whatever it is called now) are ports that have been requested, thought about and actually partly developed for while now. I would like to keep exploring ways to make these ports possible, but as it stands they are just a maybe will happen, maybe won’t. I don’t personally have the time to full out develop these ports, so I would 100% need outside help. There is a chance that in the future a “Core Code” library can be done to aid in the development of these ports that allow them all to share a core library of features, but there is a fair amount of work just in that to make it happen. If you are interested in helping out feel free to reach out or join my Discord and we can talk further there!

Usage stats

Again, this is mainly for transparency purposes, but also because I like sharing what I’m doing. I will be working on switch my usage data base over from SQL to InfluxDB. This mainly is because this data fits better in a time based DB, and it will allow me to have better live stat views and time breakdowns. As for the stats that are tracked, because I know you guys are curious and also hesitant about data collection, the only data that is tracked and saved is mod version, game version and soon development platform (Forge, Bukkit, Fabric, etc..). Everything is anonymous. As I have said before, any and all questions and concerns are welcome!

Final Thoughts

I just want to give a big thanks to everyone who has helped! I would list or name you all here, but I would go on forever and would probably miss people which I don’t want to do. Just know that I know you’ve helped and I thank you!

Another thing I want to address is donations and support. I get asked occasionally what the best way to support me and what I do is, so I thought I’d make a little note here. First off donations are greatly appreciated, but totally not necessary. Modding is 100% a hobby, so I really don’t expect to make anything from it, but I everyone can agree though that getting income from your hobbies is always a good feeling. As for ways to support me, I always recommend people either Subscribe or Donate through my Twitch (twitch.tv/turkey2349) or you can even donate through the Curse page! I do have a Patreon, but currently have no Patreons and don’t really check or update it,so You can support on there, but it’s not really preferred.

Lastly I will be semi opening my Discord for all to join! It’s never really been a “closed” server, but has never really been advertised. If you’d like to join, you can click here or use the code wkgyaxs!

Again thank you all and I can’t wait to see what the future holds!

Chance Cubes v4.0.0 change log

A Beta build has officially been posted to Curse for version 4.0.0 of Chance Cubes. The 4.x series of the mod is going to be focused towards Content Creators and the End users to allow for the most customization no matter the pack or scenario the mod is being used in. I will be addressing 4 main topics: The new Chance Cube Profile system, New rewards, content creators, and new reward parts.

Chance Cube Profiles

This is a feature that has been a long time in the planning phase and just recently a solution was found. I’m hoping that this new system addresses many of the concerns and complaints about certain groups of rewards, as well as lets the end users customize the rewards to fit their play style, whatever that may be. Because this new feature is really tailored towards all of you guys, my end users, I would greatly appreciate your feedback on this feature as I really want to make sure it is addressing the issues and is what you guys want.

Due note that this feature currently only works in Single player as profiles are tied to the server and all players and profile info is not yet sent from the Server to the client yet. This is all stuff that will be implemented and fixed at a later date, but It was more important to get this feature out and testing for feedback than to have every little detail and feature complete. Eventually both profiles and rewards will be user specific, but the server will always control the profiles, not the clients.

What are Chance Cube profiles?

Simply put, they are a way for users to disable groups of like rewards to customize the mod to fit their play style. Profiles also add in the ability to dynamically add, remove, or change rewards based on in game events to better adapt the rewards to fit what ever situation the player is in.

Now the longer and more detailed version. Are you someone who plays in peaceful or hardcore mode and get annoyed by the fact that some rewards are really harsh or simply don’t work because you play in that game mode? Do you feel certain rewards just shouldn’t be given in the Nether? Or are you someone who just hates the negative rewards? Well Chance Cube profiles is my proposed solution to addressing these scenarios and use cases. This feature is very beta at the moment and I’m mostly looking for feed back on it as well as ways to add on and enhance the experience. More on future plans in a moment, but first lets talk about what you can do with Profiles.

Profile Features

Profiles essentially have 5 features to them.

  1. The ability to enable rewards when the profile is turned on or applied
  2. The ability to disable rewards when the profile is turned on or applied
  3. The ability to change a rewards chance value (And maybe in the future, be able to change other aspects)
  4. The ability to have a sub profile so that when this profile is enabled or turned on, it also enables the effects of all of it’s sub profiles (Note it doesn’t actually enable the sub profiles currently, but I may change that in the future)
  5. The ability to be dynamically triggered. Currently the only supported triggers are Game mode changes, Dimension changes and Game stage changes, but I hope to add more in the future so let me know if you have any triggers you would like to see.

The first two are pretty self explanatory, but the one key to be aware of is that rewards are enabled by default in the mod. This is because most profiles will be disabling rewards when the profile is applied. This opt out system is a bit confusing at first, but due to the fact that users are more wanting to turn of like rewards, it makes sense to do it in this way as most users will play the stock mod experience and having to enable group rewards will get a bit tedious as more and more profiles are added.

The third, the ability to change a reward’s chance value is new function I added to the rewards and may expand upon in the future as a regular cube feature and also will expand on as a profile feature. Currently showcased via the Hardcore profile, the profile changes the Half_Heart reward to have a chance value of -100 for better balance. In the future though I’d really like expand the reward customization and adjustments to say allow for users to turn off the high-damage part of some rewards to allow for them to still enjoy the minigames without the death lose condition.

The fourth feature is just a nice to have tidying feature to allow for like profiles to link together. Not really much to say here.

Lastly the dynamic trigger feature is one of the bigger parts of this profile system as it allows the profiles to not only add and remove rewards the player wants, but to also adjust the mod to work in it’s most optimal state as well as prevent “Eventless” rewards that may be caused due to any number of reasons like peaceful mode or being opened in the nether. I very much want to expand upon this idea to add more event triggers, so please let me know which ones I should add support for!

Can I make my own profile?

Why yes you can! The whole concept behind profiles is to easily allow end users to customize the mod to their liking as well as to easily transfer to other packs. That being said, you are able to make your own profiles and add them to the mod! A detailed wiki how-to is in the works and I will be continuing to add to it. Hopefully this will allow you guys to make the mod how you want to play it and through your suggestions I will keep expanding the system!

In game config UI

In game the Profiles can be viewed and manually enabled or disabled via the Chance Cubes config screen found in the mods section of the game. This Screen is very much in development as we work towards a better system, but we felt this provided a better than nothing experience.

That about wraps it up for profiles, so lets move onto the new rewards!

New Rewards

As Chance Cubes continues to grow , adapt and branch out into new reward possibilities, 9 new Chance Cube rewards and 6 new Giant Chance Cube rewards have been added. Regular Cube rewards will be continuously made rolled out with new versions, but I really made a push to make the Giant Cube reward pool larger and while 6 may not seem like much, it really helps. Lets meet the new rewards shall we?


chancecubes:Wither_Status_Effect

For the first new reward, this one show cases one of the new reward parts that was added, and will be touched on later, Status Effect rewards. This reward will have a -25 chance and will give all players in a 30 block radius the wither status effect for 1 or 2 for 2.5, 5, 6, 7.5 or 10 seconds. This reward also showcases a new reward feature of dynamic values that will also be address later, but essentially this is what allows for the variable effect duration. Nothing too flashy with this reward, but definitely showcases the potential for the new, under the hood, features.

chancecubes:Ice_Cold

This reward is actually a revival of the old Frozen, but reworked to be similar to the Da_Rude sand reward. The reward will have a
-10 chance and it spawns a 5 x 5 x 3 area of ice blocks around the player with the message ” You’re as cold as ice”.

chancecubes:CARPET!

I can hear it now. All of the complaints of another trolly reward that just spams blocks with no points. I hear ya and I really hope that the new Profile system that I will touch on soon, will help solve these complaints while also appeasing those who like, and want this reward. Any ways, this reward has a 7 chance value and it spawns an 11x5x11 grid of carpet around the player.

chancecubes:Mob_Tower

This is a reward that has been long since requested and I finally go around to adding in. The reward has a 0 chance value and it spawns a tower of mobs riding each other with each mob in the tower being chosen randomly

chancecubes:Matching

Now for the first of the mini game rewards. I’m really hoping these mini game rewards become very popular with users as I really enjoy making these and seeing them work. Really cool and I think adds a great skill balance that doesn’t rely on in game items and is challenging at all points in the game. I do plan to make the “Inta-death” fail result configurable via profiles in the future, but for now they stand as is. This reward has a 0 chance value and it has the player play a matching memory mini game. The player is given a short period of time to memorize 9 wool blocks then after the time is up, the wool block turn into glass and the player must break the glass in pairs to beat the game. Sounds fun right?

chancecubes:Monty_Hall

Next Mini game reward isn’t so much of a mini game as it is just a fun little luck reward. I don’t do many of these, but I feel like the benefits and down sides are small enough that this reward isn’t too annoying. The reward has a 0 chance value and it spawns in 3 stone with 3 buttons. When the use presses a button the player with either get a random item, a message saying “You walk away to live another day…” or a Lit TNT where they stand.

chancecubes:Tic_Tac_Toe

For the last of the 3 new mini game rewards is definitely my favorite. Tic-Tac-Toe! What more do I have to say? You even play against a computer! The reward has a 0 chance value and it spawns a tic tac toe board and has the player play against the computer. The Player plays first and once they place a block the computer will automatically place their block. If the player wins they get 500 Diamonds, but if they lose they get nothing. If anyone wins, please let me know! Watch the sneak peak video from my dev Stream!

chancecubes:Lingering_Potions_Ring

Nothing special, just a cool little filler reward. The reward has a -10 chance value and it spawns thrown lingering potions and makes a ring around the player/ block.

chancecubes:Mob_Abilities_Effects

For the final new regular chance cube reward is a reward that I plan to play around more with and may expand into a lot of new rewards in the future! The reward will have a -15 chance that spawns a random mob with a random special effect Vague I know, but for the time being I’m leaving it that way as a surprise.

Now for the new Giant Cube rewards

chancecubes:Woodland_Mansion

Ah yes the Woodland Masion. Very large structure that keeps up with the theme of the the Giant Chance Cubes and also adds some more diversity to the Village reward. Maybe a nether fortress or end dungeon in the future??

chancecubes:Sphere_Snake

Inspriation taken from Pandora’s boxes, this reward has blocks spawn in and snake about in the world for a short period of time. Kind of a hard one to explain….

chancecubes:Random_Explosion

Nothing special, this reward builds up suspense with lava pops, and explosion effects and sounds before finally exploding with a random effect .

chancecubes:Beacon_Arena

Another structure reward that while is still large in scale, this one isn’t so massively invasive like the village and mansion are. This reward builds a large circular arena with 4 small beacons and 1 large beacon in the middle. The arena floor is made up of random blocks.

chancecubes:World_Infection

Another Pandora’s box inspired reward that infects nearby blocks and changes them into a new block. From there this process is repeated with randomly selected adjacent blocks and continues to scale outwards for a short period of time. Watch the sneak peak video from my dev Stream!

chancecubes:Block_Thrower

Finally the last new Giant Cube reward and perhaps the most flashy reward. I am a very big fan of the block levitation effect and definitely might try to incorporate it in another reward the future. This reward slowly levitates more and more blocks in a square radius from the block and then after a certain amount of time explodes the blocks and drops a random surprise. Watch the sneak peak video from my dev Stream!

Content Creators

So this new version of Chance Cubes I’m hoping to work closely with a few content creators to address holes in the mod that have come up for non pack players and those who liked the old lucky block style play. At this moment I don’t have a specific system planned out and I currently don’t want to do it in the same style as lucky blocks due to a conflict of mod identity as well as overall hacky style system LB uses, but I am actively looking for a possible solution. Again though I am very much looking to address the non modpack players out there and those who would be interested in making Chance Cube extensions.

To add onto this, I have actually written a parser to convert LB rewards to CC rewards, but due to it not being 100% complete and the “hacky” feeling of how it ended up I decided to pull it. I may end up making a separate jar file to convert from LB to CC rewards in the future, but we will see.

Secondly before we get into the new reward parts, the Reward creation files got a cool new feature! Dynamic Values! Simply put, this will allow reward creators to have non static rewards and be able to add a little randomness of their own. Not going to go into too much detail, but the full specs can be found here. As with everything else in this mod, feedback is always welcome and if there’s some sort of dynamic value that you’d like to see feel free to reach out to me to talk! Here’s a little demo from my dev stream to gain a little more understanding of how these work/ what they are as well.

New Reward Parts

This version of Chance Cubes added in 2 new reward parts for Custom Reward makers. Status Effect and UI Title reward parts. Fairly self explanatory, the Status Effect reward part allows creators to make rewards that give players a desired status effect and can be configured to even give all players in a certain radius the status effect. You can see how to add this reward part here. The UI Title reward part adds the ability to leverage Minecraft’s Title feature that can appear on the screen. All title types are supported and more on how to make this reward type can be found here.

In addition to these reward parts the reward creation wiki for each part as also been given a big of a make over, so I hope that helps.

Lastly let me just list off some Extra tid-bits and changes/

Miscellaneous

Schematic placement is a big quicker and will no longer replace air blocks with air blocks and simply skip them.

Added support for Russian

Both the Regular and Giant Chance Cubes now have disclaimers in the item tool tip to help prevent new users for unknowingly make mistakes.

A Command was added to spawn the Giant Chance Cube. Simply type “/chancecubes spawnGiantCube ~ ~ ~” where the ~’s work just like the vanilla place block command.

In game reward creatation is no longer. This system was old and very buggy and bad, so it has been removed and replaced with the profile management system.

Added a new Block Cache system for rewards that replace blocks, but revert after the reward is over. I cannot guarantee that all modded blocks will play nice with this system, so please let me know if any errors are found and I will try my best to address them!

Custom reward parsing now has some more intuitive error messages

Chance Cube commands now have better Tabbing support

ExtraUtils, Thermal Foundation and Thermal Expansion rewards have been partially added back and we will continue to work on adding them back and adjusting them as we go.

The reward that dropped poison potion rewards now gives a poison status effect

Countdown, DigBuild, Magic Feet, Math, Maze and Question rewards all utilize titles for time visibility

Potion and effect rewards now accept both number and name for potion id, but the name is recommended

Fixed Issue with legacy schematics not loading in TileEntities correctly

Reward name changes
– BedRock -> bedrock
– ChatMessage -> Chat_Message
– pssst -> Pssst
– SlimeMan -> Slime_Man
– AnvilRain -> Anvil_Rain
– Book_Of_Memes -> Book_of_Memes
– SkyBlock -> Sky_Block
– TrollHole -> Troll_Hole
– TrollTNT -> Troll_TNT

Chest Reward type now only accepts an amount value instead of a min and max. min and max replaced by new dynamic values

Fixed a bug with Rewards hitting sound limit. Added config option to make block and schematic reward parts not produce a sound

Conclusion

Welp, I think that’s about it. I think I’ve addressed everything, but if I haven’t I’ll be sure to edit this post. Feel free to let me know what you think of the new changes in this version of the mod and suggestions are always welcome. Thank you everyone for helping me achieve 13+ Million downloads on Curse! I greatly appreciate the support. Thanks for reading and keep being awesome!

– Turkey (Turkey2349)

Untitled

DISCLAIMER: So I originally started writing this post as a way for me to say that I would be slowing down my modding projects and to just write down my thoughts and ideas about the next year or so, but after the first paragraph It ended up turning into sorta my history in the Minecraft modding scene. This post is nearly all straight up to how I wrote it the first time though and not revised as I felt like that fits my current mood and feelings towards modding. This blog post is very long and I don’t blame anyone who doesn’t read this as it is almost 3am right now and well…. this was one heck of a random and all over blog post. If you read it I hope you enjoy my 2am thinking and whateverness.

I don’t know how to start this post, or even name it as this is a very difficult topic for me to talk about since Minecraft and developing and modding it have been apart of my life for so long. I’ve sort of accepted that my days modding and working with minecraft are numbered and slowly reaching an end, but it’s still not something that I feel like I am quite ready to give up on after all the friends, connections and experiences I’ve made and had over the years. Let me preface the rest of this post by saying in no way am I done with modding or am stopping, but I still want to update you guys with what’s on my mind and my outlook and the next year or few years with what my life may show. Anyways read this if you like as some of it may just be me speaking through the current mood I am in and change day to day, but I still felt it was important for me to at least write this down and get this out there.

Like I said above, I don’t feel like I am in any position to say that I am going to be stopping any of my projects or mods, but I definitely am going to be no longer looking for new projects or mod ideas to take on. It was 6 years ago that I decided I wanted to explore what else the game of Minecraft had to offer after buying the game around version 1.1 and quickly becoming bored with the vanilla experience. Through a friend I learned about the concept of creating server plugins and this naturally intrigued me so I decided to try and learn how to program so that I could make some plugins and further the game’s experience and fun. After learning the basics of Java I then created my first Bukkit plugin called the Randomizer Plugin (For the curious) for Craft Bukkit 1.3.2. This spun off into the first half of my Minecraft Development career on the Bukkit scene. The Randomizer plugin was just me playing around and I quickly moved onto bigger and better things and soon began work on another plugin called Trouble in Mine Town with another developer by the name of Jimbo. This plugin was obviously based on the popular Gmod minigame at the time Trouble In Terrorist Town and while this plugin was never a huge success, working with Jimbo and on this plugin I learned a lot about programming and introduced my greatly into how projects work and are developed, but also introduced me into my first online community of the Silent Noobs. I met many great people in this community and it really revived my enjoyment of the game and also pushed me out into the streaming and other communities. About a year after TMT was first started, I looked for a new plugin to work on to continue to expand my knowledge of programming as well as try something new and fun. The project that would be born from this was my first major project called Call of Minecraft: Zombies and funny fact, I have never owned any of the Call of Duty games and had only played the zombies game mode a handful of times. After a few days of initial programming, I came across another plugin post on Bukkit about another mod dev trying to tackle the same mod idea as me at the same time. I reached out to the developer, IModZombies4Fun (IMod, or Connor), and made the offer to him to join forces and create the plugin together. IMod quickly accepted and we soon released our plugin to Bukkit and over the next 3 years we continued to improve, expand, and build up the plugin into a pretty big success and surpassing 50k downloads, which at the time was a pretty big achievement for a Bukkit minigames plugin. Through IMod and the plugin I got many great opportunities to meet Server admins from places like Mineplex, Hosting partners like Kai Micah Mills (DediFire) and even Youtubers like Ssundee! I was truly grateful for all that had happened to me over the past 3 years, but I slowly started to lose interest in my projects and I was not interested in following IMod into his jobs with servers and networks as I still saw modding as a hobby for myself. When the Bukkit DMCA hit I know things were about to go sideways and all hell was about to break loose about the future of Bukkit, servers and plugins, so I decided my time with Bukkit was coming to an end.

It was a mod maker by the name of Ferullo (was only able to find his twitter, but I was very surprised to see what he had been up to lately), who at the time was working on a mod by the name of Ferullo’s Gun Mod, who really got me interested in Forge and client side modding. I was well aware of forge and modding while working on Bukkit, but it wasn’t until talking to Ferullo that I became interested in what I could do. After the DMCA fell over Bukkit and the idea of Forge and what I had seen while talking with Ferullo came to mind I decided why not give it a try? I entered the modding scene on forge right as 1.7.10 began to pick up steam in mod packs (I beleive 1.8 minecraft was well out at this point but it was still some time away from 1.8.9) and yes this was around 2 years ago if that helps put into perspective on how long modded minecraft stayed on 1.7.10. Anyways, going back to the story, I lurked around Twitch for awhile trying to find inspiration for modding ideas as a way to introduce me into forge and learn the differences between it and Bukkit. I soon came across the streamer Mazphiro (While he doesn’t do Minecraft streaming anymore he is an avid pokemon player/streamer so if that interests you be sure to check him out!) who at the time was working on a modpack of his own and through him I found many ideas and inspired the creation of my first mod TurkeyUtil! As I progressed with the mod and Maz, he introduced me to this little unknown streamer who went by the name of Darkosto and I soon became hooked not only the streamer, but the small community he was building up. After a month or two, Darkosto began work on what would soon be called Journey To The Core and would soon give TurkeyUtil and my modding career the break and lift it needed to turn into what it is today. After two versions of the pack, TurkeyUtil was fully integrated and I was adding items to help style the pack into something unique and help put Darkosto’s visions into reality, errr virtual reality? Anyways, soon another mod dev, by the name of Funwayguy joined to team and soon the third, and final version of JTTC was ready for public release on what would end up being the AT Launcher and I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t amazed with how much the pack took off from there because it surpassed all expectations the three of us had and opened many doors for all of us with our Modded carers. Soon the three of us were recognized by many streamers and communities which leads me to my final “section” of my modded Minecraft life of the present day. From the success of JTTC I ended up as a mod for the streamer Wyld and somehow the topic of Lucky Blocks came about and how the mod would no longer be allowed in mod packs. I decided to jump on this idea and that was how Chance Cubes was born! I received a lot of initial help from Wyld, Darkosto and their communities and soon the mod was released and has now become the amazing success it is today thanks to you guys and I can’t say thank you enough!

Well this post did not go at all like I thought it was and I really broke away from the topic that I started this whole post with. I really actually don’t know where to go from here xD. I guess all that I can say is that this Hiatus has been great for me (Even if school has a huge pain) and now that I am on spring break I have actually felt no urge to mod or do much of anything and it was really a wake up call for me to tell me that I am starting to lose interest in modding and development like I did at points with Bukkit. I really could continue this out some but idk how to at this point. I am just leave this sit overnight and come back to it tomorrow and add a better ending, but for now thank you to the few who have actually read this whole jargon of a blog post and stay super awesome and amazing!

Taking a small “Hiatus”

Ok, so before I begin let me preface or give a tl;dr about what I mean by taking a hiatus. Simply put, I don’t plan on casually modding or making a focus on modding over the time period. I do have one obligation with Darkosto that I will be helping out on and I still plan to fix bugs as they are reported, but I will be trying to take time off of modding and focus on school and the people that are in my life.

If that tl;dr was a good enough explanation for you than cool, but if you still have questions, let me try to answer them here. First off I know the biggest question that most of you are having is how long will this “hiatus” last and to be frank, I have no idea. Recently my life has become extremely busy as I am in my 1st year of college within the college of engineering, which in it’s self is a lot of work. Secondly I have drawn some bad straws with my schedule for this semester which includes four 8am classes each week and I don’t return to my dorm until almost 6pm everyday during the week. From there, I am usually completing class work or relaxing from the day and then due to my 8am the following day I have been going to sleep earlier which eliminates most, if not all of my free time to mod at nights. On the weekends I do have more time for stuff, but recently I’ve been trying to get out more to just enjoy my time at college and meet new people to be with and build up some relationships with. Modding has been putting a lot of stress on me lately, not so much from the amount or type of work that it is, but more from the fact that I haven’t had time for it and modding almost seems like a second job for me. Speaking of that that brings up another point in the fact that I actually do have a real job with my university in mobile development where recently I’ve even been struggling to get in 10 hours a week with them. All and all, this has nothing to do with the community or anyone specific and is more of just a decision that I need to make for me to have some time away while I focus on the more pressing things in my life. Hopefully you guys can see where I am comming from and I’m always available on twitter and such to answer any questions that you may have, just know that I will probably not be as quick to respond as I have been in the past. Thanks for reading, stay amazing everyone and I’ll see you all around the interwebs.

Ludum Dare 37 Postmortem

Ludum Dare 37

Theme: One Room

Game Name: Hedge Maze Overlord

Play The Game Here

Results: (Results compiled with all past Ludum Dares)

Category Rank (Out of 901) Community Rating
Innovation #119 3.68
Fun #239 3.32
Theme #264 3.68
Overall #294 3.32
Audio #342 2.68
Graphics #560 2.26

You can watch the time lapse video of the creation of the game here

Results from Ludum Dare 37 were posted just over a week ago now, so it’s time I got around to writing another postmortem about my experiences and thoughts about my game from this past game jam. If you don’t know what a postmortem is, it’s simply a write up that lots of people due after competing in Ludum Dare to talk about their game that they have created and to discus what they liked and/or disliked about what they created as well as anything¬†they may have wanted to do differently either in this game or in future games. This Ludum Dare occured on the weekend during finals week (although my finals were not until later in the week), so it really lowered the amount of time I was able to spend on the game. I will explain in more detail below, but I mainly used ideas from past games to simplify my design and In the end I was able to create my game in just over 10 accumulative hours while also preparing my self for my finals :). Anyways let’s get into the details of the game, shall we?

First lets start of with the bigger question of what did I make. For this Ludum Dare I ended up returning to some of my earlier game designs and themes and what I came up with turned out to be one of my best games as I topped some of the scores from the past Ludum Dare that I competed in (Ludum Dare 35). The game is called Hedge Maze Overlord is an interactive game where you are trying to manipulate a randomly generated maze in order to escort a “child” character out of the maze without running into any of the skeletons that patrol the maze. You are able to manipulate the maze by placing down walls to block the child, or skeletons’ path and force them to chose other paths to pursue. The player has a limited number of walls and each wall only lasts for a few seconds before disappearing and needing a few seconds to recharge before it can be placed again. Before getting into the game, the player is also able to choose how many walls they want to have access to as well as the number of skeletons that patrol¬†the maze. That’s about it really, the game has a fairly simplistic play style and there is not a whole lot to it.

Next up I want talk about the more enjoyable, what went right with the game section of the postmortem. Now that I’ve actually thought about this, however, it’s not so much that things went right in this game, it’s more of things didn’t break. Since this Ludum Dare took place the weekend before finals, I was very limited on time and made this game while on breaks from studying and, as crazy as it may sound, as a way for me to relax during the stress of finals. As I had done in past Ludum Dares, I utilized base code that I had compiled for Ludum Dares to speed up my game making progress by lowering the amount of recoding I needed to do. This combined with the fact that the main mechanic of the maze and ai are both something that I have done and made many times, allowed me to have basic game play completed pretty quickly. ¬†For the most part, the only new concepts that I had to actually tackle in the game was to add the new GuiSliders and then tweak a few mechanics of the maze generation to fit the needs of the game. Even the leaderboard was something that I added in the last ludum Dare I completed in, so I had a reference to use for that as well. Given the outcome of the game results and the feed back I received, I’m not going to sit here and say the game didn’t go well because I didn’t challenge myself, it’s more just that I don’t feel the game contained anything new or exciting that I haven’t already done before and thus it didn’t feel like as big of an accomplishment as prior games felt.

On the flip side, there were some elements of my game that, after seeing comments and reviews, I wish I could have included or changed. The first being the overall art, and while my digital art skills are not the best, I do fell like I could have cleaned it up a bit better to make the game feel a tad more polished. Secondly, now that people have commented on my game, I agree with them in the respect that the exit should have been more well defined in the game, because unless you stopped to search for it, there was no real indication that it was the exit or place to guide you character to, to win the game. Along similar lines ¬†of in game tweaks, I would have also made the sliders more defined since it seemed many people didn’t use them. Or they just submitted their scores with the default settings which is possible, but even if that were the case, I still thought they blended into the background a little too well. Lastly, something that I would like to change about the game and I will speak more about it in the next section is the sounds. Yes while it does seem the sounds still make the game feel more complete, the style of sounds didn’t really fit the style of the game, so it provided some slight conflict of interests.

Finally the last topic that I want to talk about is what I plan to change for future Ludum Dare games. The date for Ludum Dare 38 has already been announced for late April, which coincidentally, is the week before my spring finals…. what luck! Anyways I will probably do the same thing that I did this time around where I use the game making process as a break from studying and what not, but we shall see when it comes around. Getting back to the question of what I plan to do differently, I would like to Change up the style of audio that I use as well as put some focus into game effects. The first part I began to talk about in the last section, but I want to change the audio style that my sound effects are. Currently I use a program called bfxr and Its a really good sound effect creator, but only problem is that it have a very 8-bit style sound to it and my games do not have 8 bit style art or game play, so it doesn’t really make the sounds feel connected to the game. I will be doing some searching for similar programs and try to find one that does not have the 8-bit feeling that I can use for future games to better complete my games. The second part that I would like to improve on for future games is “Special Effects” to make my games feel less static and more immersive or action packed. Whether it be particles, animations or shaders I do not know, but I would like to incorporate one or multiple types into future games to make them that much better.

That about does it for this Ludum Dare postmortem write up. If you tried out my game at all, I would love to know what you think, but other than that, thanks for reading and stay awesome!

2017 | New Website | Chance Cubes | New Project | Updates!

It is now 2017 and I am still behind on basically everything. That being said however, I have also gotten A LOT of things done recently and have been fairly productive over my winter break while I have been home. First things first, I have switched my webhost to a small VPS which will now allow me to do lots of new stuff. Mainly this allows me to host my own Jenkins server to build my own mods and projects and then put them into a maven server¬†for you all to use! This also allows me to redo my webhook “api” and I will soon be switching Chance Cubes to use this website to grab rewards and info off of instead of Github. Speaking of Chance Cubes, I have finally released a 1.11 version of the mod as well as fixed lots of bugs in the 1.10.2 version as well. My current plans are to fix bugs and get one more update out to 1.10.2, 1.11 and to 1.7.10 (update to use new webhook) all before heading back to college on the 9th. Also I will be working with Darkosto and the wonderful group of mod devs that have all gotten together to help make the awesome packs that Darkosto does create and will be working on a custom mod for his supper seacrete special pack that has yet to be fully announced. I do hope and plan to stream some of the mod development before heading back to college once I am given the ok when the pack is announced, so stay tuned! Lastly just some small updates. I will hopefully get around to writing a Ludum Dare 37 post mortem eventually….. we’ll see. I have also been toying around with GobbleCore and TurkeyUtil for 1.10.2 and I may end up finishing it, but I’m not sure. As of right now I’m not liking how Gobble Core is turning out at the moment and am unsure if I want to continue it. I think that’s all I have for now, so thanks for reading and Keep being awesome guys!

College Life is Hard | GobbleCore | TurkeyUtil Resurrection | LudumDare?

So it’s 1 am right now as I am writing this and I have a lecture in the morning, but that’s just become my life recently ¬†so let’s do this thing! Bad jokes about college life aside, College or University or what ever you may call it has really taken a lot of my time away and even my breaks off from classes (Fall Break, Thanksgiving Break ect.) have been mostly filled with just being back with family, enjoying my time off, or simply doing more class work in preparation. Long story short, I’ve had very little time to do anything programming related and have even been unable to interact with people on twitch and others that I’m usually active with. Now with finals approaching I have come to accept that the 1.10.2 and 1.11 updates of Chance Cubes will be delayed until around Christmas time. On the bright side tough, I have begun working on a base mod for me to use Called GobbleCore that will hopefully make it easier for me to make mods for people like Darkosto as well as make it easier for me to update my mods to future versions of MC. I do not plan to make Chance Cubes use GobbleCore as I want Chance Cubes to continue as a stand alone mod, but as a first test I will resurrect TurkeyUtil for one more update to help me test the mod. Not sure if I ahve anything else to say, but hopefully I didn’t make any mistakes as I don’t feel like re-reading this and am probably just going to post this as is and go to sleep. Anyways thanks for reading my very random and informal blog post and keep being amazing people!

Oh one last thing! I probably will not be competing in this Ludum Dare due to finals the following week, but i’m not 100% sure about that.

Why making rewards for Chance Cubes is not easy

Just a small disclaimer before I begin this post, please check to see if a reward is a default Chance Cube reward before coming and complaining to me or dissing the mod. I have seen many posts and comments about people ripping on the mod due to rewards that I am not even in control of so please check first. Default Chance Cube rewards are prefixed by “chancecubes:” before the name of the reward in both the console and config file.

Also another thing before I begin, I was originally going to write this about the Science behind creating a Chance Cube reward, but I got side tracked in my response below and not wanting to make the blog post incredibly long I decided to leave it and save my Science behind the reward idea for another post, another day.

Now with that out of the way, those comments and posts about how dumb the rewards in Chance Cubes are, actually inspired me to make this blog post about why creating a balanced reward for a mod like this is tricky business. I’m sure people like Kehann and TheCazadorsnipper as well as others who have created Rewards for Chance Cubes and similar mods will agree with me in that unless the reward is just there for a slight jump scare or good laugh (Which I will say Kehann is amazing at this), creating a reward that is both balanced, but also game impacting (good or bad) is just down right a challenge. Why? Because making a reward that benefits a player during the early, mid and late game just isn’t realistic. Same applies to bad rewards that are just as dangerous to the player during the early game as well as during the later game. For example, Iron armor is a great early game/ mid game reward because it gives the player a nice boost in armor or simply just gives them some iron (because who isn’t always in need of iron), but late game, those benefits just aren’t there. On the other end of the spectrum, giving a nether star early game can be really op, but it can also be pointless if they have nothing to use it for if they have no other resources to make it of value. Meanwhile this can be a nice boost to players in the later game. If we look on the side of negative rewards, the creeper surrounded reward is a big challenge to those in the early/mid game, but once you get to a certain point, you just aren’t going to die to them because they don’t do any damage. The things that would actually be of challenge to the later game players is just not fair or too deadly to face in the early game.

So what am I doing with Chance Cubes to counter act this? Well simply put, I am trying anything and everything, but I have found a few things that seem to work better than others.

  1. Leveling the playing field for bad rewards. By this I mean doing something in the reward that makes it just as dangerous for early game players to face as it is for late game players. One example of this is the inventory bomb reward and the old (and currently disabled for unrelated issues) reward that had a zombie that would steal the players armor and sword. These rewards level the playing field by taking away late game player’s protection and damage to bring them down to an equal level of an early game player in order to provide the challenge of getting their stuff back. Another example is the Maze, Math, and Question rewards that all force kill the player, regardless of level, upon failing to complete some task. This gives players equal chances throughout the period of game and provides the same punishment for all levels.
  2. Making good rewards be unique and not something that is straight out of the game or providing some immediate restriction to the item. The big stick is a good example for a unique reward in that you can’t normally enchant a stick with sharpness 5 and it provides an early/ mid game weapon, but it also gives sharpness to the late game players if they have the ability to rip the enchantment off the item. The bedrockium drum reward is a favorite of mine because it gives you a bedrockium drum from ExtraUtilities, but it hinders you from using it right away because it is filled completely with water causing the player to have to drain it first which often takes time, less time the later you are into the game.

Overall, I guess what I am trying to say if that creating a reward for Chance Cubes is a lot harder than you may think it is and I really do put a lot of work into trying to create the best expedience with this mod as I can. Yes there are other complicated solutions to fixing this problem like increasing difficulty as the game progress, but that has problems in its self and just isn’t worth the work.

The biggest solution to the problem of balancing this mod is giving pack creators the ability to create custom rewards and enable or disable default rewards to tailor the mod to their pack. Pack creators often have a set progression and know what would make a certain reward better for their pack than another so I really leave most of the balancing up to them in the end. What they choose to do with the mods and the rewards they create are totally up to them.

Thank you guys for reading through my little rant here. Keep being awesome and thank you for making this mod what it is now!

So, College

I am just over half way through my first semester of college and let me say that is has definitely been a new experience for me. I have been finding out that an engineering degree, Computer Science to be specific, is not the easiest degree out there to obtain and is proving to be a lot of work. Studying and class work and my campus job has really taken up most of my time and has really prevented me from doing the things I did in the past like watch twitch streams and work on mods. I feel like I have almost been neglecting Chance Cubes with how little I have been working on the mod. Rest assured though I am in the works of bringing the 1.10.2 version up to date as well as new features and rewards for future versions. Anyways this isn’t really going to be a long post, it’s more of just for me to let you know that I am still alive and working through the real life. Thank you guys all for being supportive and for enjoying my mods! Keep being amazing!

p.s. I am probably going to be doing another AMA type blog post here in the near future so if you have any mod/ programming/ whatever related questions for me, feel free to send to me however is most convent for you!

The Summer Winds Down

Well¬†It is now nearly August and In less than a month I will officially start my freshman year of college. This past summer was great and I really enjoyed all the projects¬†I have helped develop and grow, but sadly I am going to have to cut back and prepare myself for a whole new style of life this fall and winter. Let me just say It here and now though, in no way am I leaving modding, Twitch or any other community that I am apart of. All I am doing to cutting back on the workload that I currently have, so that I can make school, and my irl job, my number one priority. Anyways, let’s run through a list of projects and stuff and I will go over and explain what the future may have for them and what I plan to keep up with, or stop development for.

 

First let’s start with probably my more popular stuff/ My Mods:

Chance Cubes:

This is probably the one project that will for the most part, go unaffected. This mod has just become so much of who I am that I can’t let it go and I will 100% continue to update and work on this mod throughout the coming years. I am just so humbled to have almost achieved 1 million downloads of this mod and I truly owe it to all of you guys for making this mod a reality!

CustomUI:

This is my newest mod, which adds a few small graphical tweaks to the game, and is one that I do plan on keeping going on the side simply because of it’s simplicity and my general enjoyment out of the few tweaks that I made. If you curious about what this mod is, check it out here¬†

Wither Crumbs: 

This mod I am very much on the fence about. I do really enjoy the idea, but I’m not sure if it’s worth continuing onto 1.9 and 1.10. If I decide to, I will release and update before I head off to college, but after that¬†I will probably leave the mod as it is and only¬†updated for¬†future updates of the mod. I just don’t see me adding anything else to the mod aside from what it already has..

Resource Eggsraction:

Yes, this is the troll mod that sparked¬†in Darkosto’s chat that one day that I actually started working on. It currently sits in ¬†very early development and only haves the bare bones that the whole mod would need. This¬†being said, it¬†is probably the only other mod that may see the light of day in future and get worked on and updated. This mainly has to do with Darkosto’s , as well as mine and others,¬†interest in the mod. I wouldn’t be opposed to having help developing this mod as the ideas that we have for the mod is quite interesting and funny, so I am definitely keeping this mod as a possibility.

Sadly now, however, I must bid farewell to some of my projects as I do not plan to work on them any further. If you are interested in reviving or simply talking to me about any one of the projects below feel free to contact me, but from now on, the following projects will, in my mind, be considered inactive.

TurkeyUtil:

This probably the mod I am most¬†sad to see go even though it basically has been sitting inactive for a while now. TurkeyUtil was my first mod that I ended up tailoring to Darkosto’s Journey to the Core modpack and I simply just added¬†anything and everything to help me learn how to mod. This mod was a ton of fun to make and had its many ups and downs, but c’mon! Who really wants to see their first project go?

Void Compression:

Void compression as well was a mod that has been sitting inactive for a little while now and I actually started to port it to 1.9.4, but I simply lack the interest to and now I am simply cutting it quits on this mod. It just never really worked like I hoped it would and the update in block code from 1.7.10 to 1.9.4 makes this mod incredibly harder to create and I simply just don’t have the determination to try.

Call Of Minecraft: Zombies:

Plugin Page

For those of you unaware. Call of Minecraft: Zombies (or COM:Z for short), was a Minecraft Bukkit plugin that me and a dev named IModZombies4Fun started about 4 years ago. This mod brought the Call of Duty: Zobmies game mod into minecraft for players to play on Bukkit servers. COM:Z was actually a pretty big mod in the Bukkit community, until Bukkit essentially disbanded and I switched over to Forge modding. The reason why I included this here is because I always hoped to one day be able to rewrite or at least fix the mod to a point where it was mostly stable in the current versions of Minecraft, but alas, I must put it down and finally call it quits on one of my favorite and oldest projects that I am apart of.

Custom Mods for Modpacks/ Similar Mods:

In the past, I have made numerous mods as sort of add ons for packs, mainly with the group of Me, Funwayguy and Darkosto, but I think it is probably in my best interest to put a¬†hold¬†custom mod work until I feel I can handle my schedule and overall time in college. I know Darkosto is getting a lot more input from his chat to help him make packs as well as more mod authors willing to help him out with mods and I know that they are working on some amazing things. Hopefully eventually I will be able to return to the mopack development world (Because helping make JTTC as well as Aftermath was a lot of fun), but In the meantime, I look forward to watching what people create next! (If you aren’t already following Darkosto you should go do that now and watch him develop a cool new invasion modpack that has many custom mods and is looking really sweet).

Well that all about does it for the Minecraft related stuff, so now let’s move onto the other random stuff and projects that I have going on!

Ludum Dare:

I have alluded to this in past blogs and stuffs, but due to the Ludum Dare 36 being unofficial and not going to have an official rating system afterwards, I am sticking with my decision to sit this one out. Since Ludum Dare does occur only 1 week into my semester I may end up doing something unofficially so that I can stay in the game dev groove, but who knows.

Volatilia-API:

I actually haven’t worked on my OpenGL Game library in a while (mostly due to bugs which have just been annoying me), but I do plan to keep this project as one that I keep coming back to as Ludum Dares approach or as i watch/ read tutorials related to the subject. It’s a nice side project for me to learn and work on my rendering abilities as well as to just have fun with and to show friends.

Streaming:

While I have not been a streaming a whole bunch, Streaming will most likely not occur while I am at college. The only chance it may occur is if I stream a Ludum Dare competition, but I believe I will be home for the December ones so those may be a possibility. I will probably just stick to watching and lurking around Twitch like I always do!

Well that’s all I really have for now. I will update you guys more as time goes on, but for now enjoy the final weeks of your summer and keep being awesome!