Mar 22, 2013
alchymy

Immortality

I’ve just found out something amazing about certain lifeforms on earth. In particular, about one of the most delicious, priciest crustaceans out there, the Lobster! Turns out, lobsters are seemingly immortal. Other such creatures according to wikipedia would be bacteria, hydras, tardigrades and jellyfish but the largest would still be lobsters.

This is apparently because researchers have found that lobsters do not slow down, weaken or suffer reduced fertility. Their cells are rejuvenated and can theoretically live forever thanks to their DNA. If not eaten, injured, or killed, a lobster might actually continue living and growing which makes you wonder if there exists a huge lobster species in the ocean deeps.

Imagine if geneticist were able to give humans the same ability to constantly reproduce cells, would immortality be within our reach?

Feb 11, 2013
alchymy

Post-Apocalyptic Currency

In the aftermath of a devastated world, a certain form of currency would definitely be necessary to define items of value. Most agree that a system of barter will definitely be the first form of trade that reemerges once the rebuilding begins but who is to say a carrot is worth ten potatoes? This is why I feel the need for a new form of consistent currency to be in the picture.

For a game world, an economic model that operated purely on bartering and trading goods would be extremely difficult to pull-off. There has to be at least a basic value system in place in order to base all the other items or services in the world. Imagine having to compare the value of a salvaged AK-47 assault rifle with the value of a healthy un-mutated cow? Also value varies between different people so a culture that lives near a stream would have a different value placed on clean water than a culture that lives on a dry rocky mountainside.

This is probably why for my post-apocalyptic world, I’d need at least a rudimentary form of new government or authority that have reestablished a working economy and a simple banking system to mint new coins that are unique to the citizens of this government. For the purpose of this idea, I’d imagine a large settlement or a city that produces ‘Ducats’ as their currency. These coins might be worthless to survivors that live beyond the influence of the city but if they wish to do trade within the city, these Ducats would come into play.

The Ducat has to be;

  • made from a material that is difficult to obtain.
  • Difficult to reproduce (counterfeit)
  • Durable (unlike paper currency)
  • Consistent in size and weight
  • Can be manufactured in a regulated manner

Other suggested forms of currency;

Bullets and ammunition as the processes for making bullets might be lost in the destruction of the old world. In a world where Might makes Right, this would inadvertently make any surviving military force the main economic force as well (especially since soldiers may retain the knowledge of manufacturing the bullets).

The Fallout universe utilizes Nuka-Cola bottlecaps as their main currency which is also a pretty good choice as it does fit the requirements for a form of currency. It is hard to counterfeit as making caps might have been lost, its durable and consistent in size and weight. Also in game-rationale, it is also light, small and durable.

Cigarettes, canned food stuff are also possible but ultimately, it is one currency without a sustainable source. A currency which only gets rarer and rarer as time progresses would not be suitable for any long-term economy.

Clean drinkable water is also a legitimate contender to become post-apocalyptic currency, especially in a dry wasteland type of world but it also suffers from the fact that it isn’t very sustainable. One could argue that the only existing water treatment facility is under the control of the ruling authority therefore they control the value of water and trade. The only major beef in using water as a proper currency for a game would be the logistics of carrying around sufficient water to trade unless of course water consumption is controlled by government issued water vouchers and then THAT could be the currency.

Everything else would be a trade of objects of value or services of value. Even the act of selling sexual favors wouldn’t be uncommon. Slavery will definitely come back onto the scene but all of these cannot really be considered as proper currency.

Over time of course, things would progress from bartering to currency with real value (such as my Ducats) to currency with an insured value, (such as money value that is pegged to the value of gold) to credit (non-existent money) and we’d be right back where we started before the apocalypse.

Feb 6, 2012
alchymy

Meet the Heroes

Character Illustrations for the three classes in Dungeon Fodder. The Warrior which eventually becomes a Champion, the Wizard that becomes an Archmage and the Thief which becomes an Assassin. This project has taken ages and gone through tons of rework but I hope to have a more refined prototype to test soon.

Aug 7, 2011
alchymy

Specky! Mark of the Year!

Check out 5 Minute Siesta’s upcoming game Specky! Mark of the Year! which is soon to be out on the App Store with visuals & animations all done  by the boys in the Lab. We’ll be putting up more visuals as soon as the game is proper launched but in the meantime do drop over there and show them your support by LIKE-ing their page!

Also those that sign-up for their newsletter get an instant 50% the game once its launched!

Jul 27, 2011
alchymy

MGDC Logo

Another little thing that I neglected to post up,…  The Logo represents a G and a D entwined in a never-ending loop. The G of course is for Games and the D is for the Developers out there. The colours was initially drawn from our national flag but since that got too corny, it’s primary reason is because of the lovely contrast it gives the logo. And of course the thick set heavy outlines are something I love to foist upon any Logo I get my hands on. And lastly, it is meant to convey a sense of dynamism kind of like something a Superhero would use on their spandex outfits. Something that stands out and yells, LOOKIT’ ME!…

Do visit the forum and contribute at http://www.mgdc.com.my/forum/ . Til’ next week on THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF LOGOS!

Jul 21, 2011
alchymy

Boxed Ammunition

A minor commission by the chaps at Ammobox Studios who are working on an amazing RTS/FPS Hybrid called Project Combine which you can check out here. The bullets were supposed to look like people standing together to represent the ‘team’ while also emphasizing the Ammo portion of their identity.

May 30, 2011
alchymy

Zaid’s Menagerie

Characters are fleshing out nicely thanks to my partner’s designs.

May 19, 2011
alchymy

Battle of Sarawak Logo

Reillustration of a student project logo entitled Battle of Sarawak.

Its looking to be a really impressive multi-player game developed using the Unreal Development Kit and should be ready-to-play by August. The logo needed some minor touch-ups to give it that little more pizazz…  Perhaps a tutorial is due one day.

May 14, 2011
alchymy

IGDA May Meet-Up

13 May 2011 – IGDA Malaysian Chapter Gathering courtesy of the lovely people at  MindValley, Bangsar.

Pretty informative and stimulating, as we were treated to three talks; one by the team of Kayangan Saga, followed by Liquid Rock Games showing off the tech behind their very own I.P., Aftershock. Really impressive made even more so by the fact that it was done by a two-man team. Lastly Buzz closed up with a talk of his own highlighting the grim situation behind our local games industry.

Also highlighted was the rebirth of the Malaysia Games Developers Community (MGDC) Forum which would hopefully bring together the scattered segments of the industry under one roof which is a monumental task in itself. So whether you’re a student, in academics, an indie outfit or a professional, all comers are welcome to participate and push the community further.

May 12, 2011
alchymy

The Hungry Hordes

Currently in the conceptualization phase for an Action Survival Horror set in a post-zombocalpytic city. I’ve been reading too much of Max Brook’s Z-Wars, playing too much of Sarah Northway’s Rebuild and watching too much of The Walking Dead…

Like many have said before, zombies are ethically the best enemy to pit your players against. The moral constrictions of killing an already dead human being is absent and typically they allow for an escalating level of difficulty. Typical zombies are slow as depicted in movies (cept for 28 days later) making them ideal cannon fodder.

Will keep updated on the progress…

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