Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Collapse the Box

Okay, time for a new game.

Do you like simple addictive games? Games with blocks and colors? If so, this would be just what you're looking for.

In Collapse the Box, you basically have to... collapse the box, but it's trickier than it sounds. I enjoyed it so much that I was playing it even while I as creating the game.

So try it out here:

www.flashbynight.com/collapsethebox

If you like it, show the love by sharing it on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest!

Screenshots:



















PS: Mobile version on the way

Friday, November 1, 2013

LOOPS

Anyone who reads this blog or plays my games knows I love simple games and puzzle games. 

I've found a game called LOOPS which is right up my alley.

You simply click on the tiles to rotate them and form loops. It'll drive you loopy.

URL: http://theblogfullofgames.com/play/loops-of-zen/

Screenshots:

Start of level:




















Halfway done:





















Finished:




Saturday, October 26, 2013

Whaddaya know about...

I've set up a site at the URL whaddayaknowabout.com 

It's a site featuring trivia quizzes, currently on 16 topics. The whole site is made using responsive design and HTML5 canvas technology, meaning basically that it'll automatically resize and work on any tablet or smartphone.

I have to admit that this is basically a site for me to play around with and test out new technologies. I have some ideas of some fun things to do with it.

As of now, it looks like this:



Thursday, October 24, 2013

Are you psychic?

I have updated one of the activities on Flash By Night to make it mobile-friendly.

Are you psychic? Find out in this card-guessing game.

Try it here:

flashbynight.com/psychic

Screenshot:


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Boxto

I felt like making a puzzle game where you compete against the PC to match colored blocks.

So I did and here it is:

http://flashbynight.com/boxto/

Some screenshots:



Saturday, September 28, 2013

Tutorial on Creating a Responsive Web Page


"Responsive Web Design" means building a page that can be viewed on any size screen, as opposed to building a separate page for mobile devices and tablets. RWD works by setting rules as to how a page should look at various screen widths. These rules are implemented as 'media queries'.

If you would like to learn how to do this, then there's a tutorial on Flash By Night for you! Just follow this link:

http://flashbynight.com/tutes/responsivedesign/

If you're an HTML beginner, no probs, you should be able to follow along. The tutorial will take you around an hour or so.


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Spam Kings!

I wanted to share with everyone about a great book I've just finished reading. 'Spam Kings' 
by Brian S. McWilliams describes the strange world of people who send junk email for a living... and the people who fight them.

Most of the events in the book take place around 2000 - 2003, so you might feel it's a little outdated by now, but it still makes for a great story.


I guess the first question that comes to mind is: Does sending spam really make these people a lot of money? The book doesn't answer this question directly, but it mentions plenty of 'chickenboners' - small time amateur spammers -while describing how a handful of spammers managed to build empires worth millions.


Two of the most colorful characters in the book are the 'time travel spammer' and 'Terri Tickle'. The time travel spammer has become obsessed with the idea of travelling back in time, which he thinks is possible. Along with his spam ads, he sends out pleas for people to help him build a time machine. Terri Tickle was a spammer who also paid people for videos of themselves being tickled.



The book also goes into detail about the fight against spam. There is a whole network of people doing this and for many of them it has become nothing less than an obsession. Strangely enough, the spammers and antispammers have a lot of contact, frequenting the same message boards where they sound each other out, tease and threaten each other. Things get petty when they put up websites designed to mock each other, complete with photoshopped images.


The book was written during a particular period where the author was doing investigative reporting on the topic. At the close of the book, most of the spammers were facing lawsuits from the Federal Government (or suing each other!). So to get the final resolution, I had to go on Wikipedia and search to find out what eventually happened to all these guys. Some ended up bankrupt, some in prison, some went 'legit' and some disappeared off the radar completely. Tragically, one of the spam kings who was not featured in the book escaped from prison and killed himself and his family. So I guess spam doesn't pay after all...










Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Drench game on mobile

Something I've been meaning to do for a long time is to convert more of my games to a mobile-friendly format. This is possible with simple games, so I have done this for Drench. Just log into the normal URL flashbynight.com/drench and you can play it on your phone or tablet. Android or Apple, no app download needed!

It looks something like this:



It will fit on smaller screens like the original iPhone.

New game in about a month!

Friday, August 30, 2013

More Games

I'd like to give a shout out to a contact who has recently started a games site.

This webmaster is very enthusiastic about his site and as you can tell from the name, it specialises in tower defence games, always fun.

Give it a try:

http://towerdefensegameshq.com/



Friday, July 19, 2013

Big Screen vs Small Screen

I often do some consulting and training work with a local college and I'm always interested in the students' attitudes towards technology.

Recently, I administered a computer test to around 150 students in batches of about 25. They would finish the test in under an hour and they had the rest of the hour to 'surf the internet peacefully' while the slower ones finished up the test.

So what surprised me was that even though they were sitting in front of a nice big screen, a good many of them pulled out their smartphones and browsed the internet on those instead.

It seems counter-intuitive to me, a big-screen fan. They preferred the smaller, more personalised internet experience to the larger more public one.

Other factors: Facebook was blocked on the desktops, as per the college policy, but I didn't see much Facebook use on their phones either. Also I'm quite sure many of their phones were new, so they may be in the gadget honeymoon phase - where they can't put it down for more than 5 minutes.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

New game: Chesstastic - The Chess Mash-Up!

Chesstastic is a new game on FlashByNight.com that takes the concept of chess and mashes it up with new board designs, new set-ups and even levels where you take on two opponents at once. It's chess like you've never played it before.

Chesstastic is timed, so you have to make your move before the clock runs out or you forfeit your turn. There is an easy setting for beginners and there are 50 levels to play through. Once you beat a level, you get a 'skipcode' that you can enter on the home screen so that the next time you play, you can skip straight to that level.

You can try Chesstastic at: http://www.flashbynight.com/chesstastic

Screenshots:




Saturday, May 11, 2013

Tablets, Smartphones, Flash, HTML5

It's tough for a casual game designer at the moment because Adobe Flash is by far the most powerful game design tool for casual games, but it has one major issue: it doesn't work well with phones and tablets. With Apple devices, although you can use Flash to create an app, Flash doesn't run on the browser at all.

Hence a lot of Flash game designers are turning to HTML5, an emerging technology that works well on mobile and desktop. Unfortunately, it is MUCH harder to make a game using HTML5. HTML5 is good for simple games but a royal pain to use to create more complex games. You need many more lines of code and there is no visual editor available. It is also more difficult to protect your games using HTML5. I want my hard work to be featured on my own site and not some Russian scam site.

HTML5 does have one great feature. You can create a game 'canvas' that adapts to the player's screen size. For example, the same game can be played on mobile and desktop and the screen size will adapt. This is called responsive design and I have done it with this game:

www.flashbynight.com/religionquiz

However, again, changing the game's screen size means you can only use this method for very simple games.

So where does this leave a site like FlashByNight.com? A lot of people visit the site on a smartphone or tablet.

The only way ahead that I can see is to feature some simple games for all platforms, while the more complex games will remain desktop/laptop only. Hopefully then, no matter how people log on, they can still have fun...  that's what games are all about.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Religion Quiz

I wanted to post a version of the quiz that the Pew Research institute carried out to test people on religious knowledge.

My version will keep a running average of scores and hopefully will be fun and easy to try!

This quiz is tablet and smartphone friendly.

Try it here:

http://www.flashbynight.com/religionquiz/


Screenshots:



Thursday, March 7, 2013

Tunemaster Redux

It's really high time to make some games and content available to people accessing Flash by Night with a mobile or tablet browser.

So for starters, I have redone the Tunemaster quiz (www.flashbynight.com/tunemaster) in HTML5 so that it can be accessed on any size of screen. On a desktop, it should look and feel like a flash game, but the page will resize to be playable on a smaller screen.

It looks something like this on the desktop:







...and something like this on a smartphone:



 For those who are interested in such things, I used the kineticjs library to create a resizable canvas to display the game and I applied responsive design techniques to both the html elements and the canvas. i will be posting some tutorials and other info soon.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Nintendo Harlem Shake

I just can't resist posting this one:

The Nintendo version of the Harlem Shake