EC2

This week I’ve:

  • Oversteer Racing: updated code to remove deprecated API references for level loading
  • Oversteer Racing: updated code for the particle system as some of the current code is deprecated
  • Oversteer Racing: written the latest dev blog
  • Glossary: removed AddThis as it cannot be configured not to set cookies any more
  • RF1: set up Bitbucket Pipelines to run automated tests for RF1
  • Misc: switched over my backups to the new EC2 instance
  • Misc: drafted a blog post on testing Django applications using Bitbucket Pipelines

This week I’ve (been pretty busy with other things):

  • Oversteer Racing: planned some future activities
  • Oversteer Racing: did some further research
  • Misc: finished setting up the new EC2 instance and started using it for backups. I’ll complete the switch over soon.

This week I’ve:

  • Oversteer Racing: worked on the settings form
  • Oversteer Racing: created a settings manager to control the settings throughout the game
  • Oversteer Racing: linked the settings manager with the test race so we can double-check the effect of the player settings
  • RF1: reviewed the work needed to better handle cancelled races
  • Misc: started researching the best setup to replace my current EC2 backup setup (I’m still intending to keep it in EC2 though)

During this sprint I managed to finish a few things on Bubblision:

  • Fixed the jerky motion issue – turned out the problem was my use of FixedUpdate. FixedUpdate updates the display on a fixed time interval which is all well and good except if the FixedUpdate is out of sync with the visual update on the device. If the two are out of sync then the result is jerky motion. The solution is to switch back to using Update instead of FixedUpdate (the latter being better for complex physics rather than simple transformations).
  • Implemented EveryPlay (now part of Unity) which allows players to take game play videos. This solves the irritatingly hard issues of recording videos of game play and was previously requiring me to do a Linux build of the game and capture the game play there (it being needlessly difficult to do this on Windows). With the absence of Unity on Linux the next best thing is EveryPlay which works like a charm (see below) once I’d installed the JDK and fixed my path to the javac. The great thing about EveryPlay is it captures video direct from the phone.
  • Changed the shaders I’m using to more mobile friendly ones
  • Did some play testing

Latest game play video, as captured by EveryPlay:

A few other things I did:

  • Upgraded RF1 to Django 1.6.4
  • Migrated changes to the ZenCart code to the shop code, not deployed yet.
  • Did further investigations into company setup and the best structures etc.
  • Gave a really short talk on my Amazon EC2 experiences at work.
  • Read more of The Making of Prince of Persia by Jordan Mechner

It’s been an interesting week and I’ve been working on a wide range of things:

  • I’ve moved more of my backups to Amazon EC2
    • I also wrote some notes on how to set this up so it’s less of a chore next time 😉
  • I upgraded the Glossary so it’s now using CakePHP 2.4.6
  • I’ve made some minor updates to RealityF1 and done the scores for the first race of the season
  • I’ve also done a lot of reading about various aspects of Search Engine Optimisation, specifically:
    • Back link profiles
    • Thin content

Unfortunately I’ve not managed to do any work on Bubblision this week so still have plenty to do for the rest of this sprint.

As expected, I didn’t have a huge amount of time to spend on Bubblision during this sprint.

Tasks completed this sprint:

  1. Sorted out the scaling for different screen resolutions
  2. Removed the old code for adjusting camera size on the menu screens
  3. Created/improved GUIs and screens
    • Home screen
    • Help screen
    • Credits screen
    • Game screen – addition of logo and score etc
  4. Added functionality to toggle the sound on and off

SunUp #14-08

  • Spent most of my time updating my fantasy F1 game for the coming season, deciding on prices, updating code and testing etc.
  • Read a tiny bit more of Level Up! The Guide to Great Video Design
  • Did some minor tweaking of the EC2 setup for my backups.

This has been a pretty hectic week and I’ve not got much done on Bubblision. The two tasks I’ve completed are:

  • Upgraded GameAnalytics to 0.5.9
  • Installed Unity Test Tools

The main reason I’ve not got much done is that I’ve been working hard on RF1. The new F1 season is rapidly approaching and it’s the second pre-season test this coming week. I hope to launch the competition after that test and there are a number of things I’ve got to do before then. So, this last week, I:

  • Upgraded to Django 1.6.2 on the live site
  • Started work on functionality changes for the coming season
  • Started looking at component prices within the game

I’ve also carried on looking at Amazon EC2 for my off site backups. So far the setup is costing me about $0.64 (or about 38p) a day. I’m currently backing up just one of my web sites but that appears reliable, I’m encrypting any sensitive data before transfer to EC2  and the cronned tasks on the EC2 box are working correctly. I’ve also set it up to alert me by email if the box shuts down or is rebooted as I need to re-mount the encrypted EBS volume by hand if it does (so I have an encrypted EBS volume and that contains the files I back up, of which some sensitive ones, such as database dump files, are encrypted individually). I also finally managed to set things up so I get an email with the output of my cron commands.

This has been a bit of a mixed up sprint as I’ve had a lot of other things to do at the same time so I’ve not been able to put in as much time as I’d have liked. Over the next few weeks I’ll launch my fantasy F1 game so that will impinge on the time available for Bubblision too.

Tasks completed this sprint:

  1. Increased the speed of the restored NPC bubbles an increased speed
  2. Fixed duplicate player bubble bug
  3. Tidied up my code
  4. Added functionality to pause the game
  5. Installed NGUI (a third-party library to help create GUIs
  6. Created a new main menu using NGUI

SunUp #14-06

  • Read a tiny bit more of Level Up! The Guide to Great Video Design
  • Decided to move my web site backups to Amazon EC2 so spent a lot of time researching that and then provisioning a server etc. I’ll blog about this process separately.