Category Archives: Personal Life

Fakermon 2

Here’s another batch of fake Pokemon that I made a while ago.

In other news I’ve finished Half Life: Alyx, and immediately started playing it again on hard mode. Apparently there’s also a lot of cool mods to check out, which is nice since the game’s a bit short. I’m also approaching 200 hours in Age of Empires 2: DE, and finally feel like I’m somewhat competent at the game.

The UK continues to be awful at handling coronavirus, so we’re not going outside anytime soon. Every government measure seems to be 2 months too late.

Stay safe!

Black Lives Matter

Over the last few days I’ve been following the protests and riots in America quite closely. For those not following the news, an unarmed black man named George Floyd was slowly suffocated to death by a group of police officers in front of a crowd of people. This quickly sparked large protests and riots in many major American cities. Here’s an article which sums up the events, and also links to some organizations you can donate to if you wish to help.

Remember that the mainstream media will dramaticise things, and that they protect the establishment. Whether it’s Fox News or CNN, they’ll show you burning buildings, but not peaceful protests where nothing violent is happening. They won’t show the police antagonizing peaceful protestors and driving their cars into them.

Any sensible country would know that the police should be trained to de-escalate situations like these, and yet, in America they seem to be trained to do the opposite.

The situation is complicated, and you shouldn’t trust anyone who’s trying to give a you a really simple and satisfying answer! There’s a lot of factors that contribute to so many people getting so mad. I hope you can relate to at least a few of the issues listed in this image:

I would also add to that image: “politicians that are bought and paid for by special interests”

Sure, there are a lot of people rioting, but don’t let that overshadow the 10s of thousands of protestors that aren’t, and the millions who are at home but are sympathetic to the protestors. Ask yourself why people are sympathetic.

Mad respect for social distancing.

Ask yourself why the minimum wage hasn’t increased in over a decade? Why America has the highest prison population per capita in the entire world? Why it’s the only developed country that doesn’t have universal healthcare? Why the justice system is so much fairer to wealthy individuals? Why neither republicans or democrats try to fix any of these issues, while they give trillions to corporations?

Personally, I think working-class Americans are right to be pissed off at their corrupt and racist leaders and institutions, and following the money can give you some idea of who they’re really working for.

Pokemon ROM Hacking

Hey guys, I’ve been playing Pokemon Clover a lot lately, and was curious about how difficult it is to edit Pokemon Fire Red. Turns out editing maps is pretty straightforward – there’s some robust tools for that, and the game seems to handle the changes quite well without crashing. It’s a bit more complicated if you want to add your own graphics, but I was happy enough just making my own version of Pallet Town with the existing tiles. The grass is populated with Weedles and Caterpies and Missingnos.

Changing Pokemon graphics was tricky though. You need to learn a bit about how to change pointers and use empty space in the ROM, so that you don’t end up overwriting any essential stuff while adding your new content. It also took me many attempts to get the color pallet right. Some of the tools used are very primitive, and just installing the text editing tool was a huge pain. What you see in the screenshot below took me 3 hours! Meanwhile the whole town took less than an hour.

Anyway, I’m probably done with this stuff now. It’s cool to mess around with for one evening, but no longer than that. I have respect for people who can devote years to this stuff without getting paid.

Review of 2019

Hey guys, here’s a summary of my year, including the good and the bad, but mostly it was quite good.

• Some of Ronja’s friends from Finland visited, and we rented a car and went on a quick road trip. Stops included Auchentoshan distillery, Glen Coe and Oban, and some little sights along the way.

• I bought a record player, and started building a vinyl collection. I’m mostly buying old used records, but I’ve got some new video game soundtracks in there too. It’s a fun vanity item to show off for guests, and my dad is also happy to listen to his old collection.

• Me, Ronja and my mum finished off work on our garden. We planted a lot of plants and bushes, my mum extended the patio a bit, I built some flower beds, and Ronja found some furniture. Sadly there wasn’t much nice weather left by the time we finished everything, but we’re looking forward to using it a lot this year.

• Me and Ronja hosted our combined birthday party at our house. With garden furniture and the record player being recently added, it now makes for a comfortable party venue. We served a lot of snacks.

• I spent some fun times with my cousin, who’s visiting from Poland. He reminds me of a younger, less socialised version of me. Me and my brother would try to drag him out of the house and get him to see more of Scotland.

• I’m slowly learning some DIY skills – I learned how to do some basic radiator maintenance, rescued a bird that got stuck inside the roof, and am tightening nuts and bolts around the house.

• Me and my dad drove to Newcastle to deliver some paintings for my mum. It was my first time there, and I was surprised how similar to Glasgow it looked. We visited a bunch of art galleries and had coffee. I should try to do more trips like that while my dad is still healthy.

• I started making pixel art, including fake Pokemon sprites and other little projects. It feels fresh after doing vector art for so long.

• Ronja organized a surprise EBF collab to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of EBF1. At the same time, Newgrounds hosted a EBF fanart competition. Tons of amazing fanart came out of those, and continued to come in throughout the year.

• Played some Scythe and other board games this year. I enjoy them, but only every once in a while, as they’re very time consuming and mentally draining. (which is why I quit D&D)

• I continued working on EBF, adding all of the leftover content that never made it into the initial release. Making new art and animations was fun, but the rest of the process was very boring. I’m really looking forward to being done with that game forever.

• I got my car properly serviced so that she’s ready for some longer trips. She’ll be 18 soon, and needed a lot of old parts replaced. I still have no interest in buying a new car until they can drive me home when I’m drunk.

• Me and some friends completed Minecraft in a series of LAN parties – the game’s changed a lot in the few years since we’ve played it! Nothing beats the camaraderie of bringing over your battle stations and playing in a room together.

• Me and Ronja tried to make an EBF Instagram account, but it never really took off, and has been abandoned.

• I became moderately obsessed with Hampture, and made my first fanarts in many years – pixel art and Lego hamster habs!

• The tech utopia that we were promised continues to fall apart. Apple bans 32-bit apps, YouTube keeps turning into TV, every major company is spying on you, and software becomes less and less reliable. At least the monstrosity that was Google Stadia flopped spectacularly.

• My Patreon continues to be somewhat popular – I tried offering a bunch of new perks, including sexy wallpapers, and the source files of my games, but in the end most people don’t claim any of the rewards and just want to support me. I like the idea of doing small monthly projects though.

• I updated my Note 2 phone to a Note 8, and was not at all impressed by the progress phones have made. I played a few mobile games for a week or two, and then the novelty wore off. I’ve already smashed the new phone by dropping a glass bottle on it – oops.

• With the latest UK election, Brexit has finally been green lit. I have no idea what the actual effects will be, but I’m not feeling optimistic. Scotland’s chances of leaving the UK seem to have increased.

• EBF turned out to be really popular in China, so I quickly added an extra holiday quest for them. I’m keeping an eye on Chinese social media to find new fanart, but it’s very frustrating how hard it is to contact them.

• Me and Ronja bought some nice clothes and travelled to Finland for her friend’s wedding on a small island. The wedding was impressive, with the bride showing up on a seaplane, and lots of tasty food being served. All of the men in our group embarrassed their girlfriends by getting too drunk to walk.

• While in Finland we spent a night in a log cabin on another tiny private island with no electricity. We were there with Ronja’s friends, two house cats, and a bunch of mosquitoes. It was nice to get far away from city life.

• My super old website started to show its age, and got infected with malware a couple of times. I coughed up some cash and my webhost upgraded it, so it should be more secure now, but there’s still some work to do – such as getting an SSL certificate, but I’ll figure that one out myself later.

• Me and Ronja exhibited EBF5 and BH2 at the Play Expo. We’ve shown EBF5 before, but BH2 was new, and it was a lot of fun watching people play co-op.

• I visited 4 different theme parks this year: M&D’s in Scotland (twice!), Blackpool Pleasure Beach in England, and Särkänniemi and Linnanmäki in Finland. All of which were amazing experiences, except for M&D’s, which is consistently awful, but it’s all that Scotland has. Even Ronja went along for some of them, and could handle anything that wasn’t too shaky and rough. My favourite rides ever are now the Taiga launched coaster in Linnanmäki, that inverting frisbee ride in Särkänniemi, and the Valhalla dark/water ride in Blackpool. Next year I plan to visit at least as many theme parks!

• My Lego collection continues to grow, and is now starting to take up a second cupboard.

• I spent a couple of nights at the Scottish borders with Ronja and our friends. We invented some drunk Olympic games to play, including piggyback races, and punching the giant balloon sloth.

• I hosted another Foe Competition for EBF5, this time for pixel art monsters. I was worried that the specifications were a bit strict, but a lot of great submissions came in, and 8 of them are now monsters in the game.

• I mostly failed my goal of enjoying my work this year, but I have a better idea of what to avoid in future. I need to spend more time on creative stuff, and less time on polishing big projects for months.

• Halloween was crazy successful this year. We made a lot of Jack o’ Lanterns, and put up a lot of lights. I dressed up as the Scream with a cleaver, same as last year. Over 100 kids showed up at our door, and many of them ran off crying. A neighbour mentioned that we’re doing good marketing for our street, since they’ve never had so many trick-or-treaters here before.

• Streaming on YouTube became a fun new hobby for me. I’ll likely keep doing it until I get bored or people stop watching. It’s a very relaxing way of producing content, compared to making video games.

• I played a lot of PS4 this year, especially VR stuff. Some great games include Astro Bot: Rescue Mission, RE7, Beat Saber, Moss, The Persistence, Super Hot, Ghost Giant, and Soma.

• Some PC games I really enjoyed this year include The Messenger, Nova Drift, Celeste, Hell is Other Demons, and PUSS! All indie stuff, as usual.

• The best thing I’ve done with my phone this year was attach an Xbox controller to it and install some emulators. I replayed a lot of my favourite childhood games, and explored the world of Super Mario 64 mods.

• We got to know a rich friend of a friend, and attended 3 of his lavish parties, including a Halloween themed one, and a New Year’s Eve celebration.

Onwards to 2020, I guess.
Sounds like it could be an exciting year, once I get EBF5 out of the way.
I’d like to buy a powerful VR PC, visit all the theme parks in England and continue working on the garden.