I’ll tell me ma, when I go home, the boys wont leave the girls alone. They pull my hair and they stole my GRIM FUTURE!!!

Well, Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well,Well! What have we here!?

The last post before Ultima Dragons 25th and GDC pictures comes your way! After a 48 hour game jam, Matt and I cranked a lot of new content on the game. Again, it is still in pre-alpha and uses free assets found on the Unity store (in-fact if there were about 20 letters before alpha in the greek alphabet, that is what letter that would be. I think that is the greek letter of epilady or omegKarl). But it is what it is. Let’s take a look… SHALL WE!?!?


Picture #1 &2. We have scrolling text that gives back story now! Society fell. people panicked and squelched on their cable bills and switched the hot and cold knobs in their showers. Things were bad.

Picture #3 The game starts where you are in a car accident and as you crawl from the burning wreckage… something horrible and weird attacks you. For once its not the smelly guy who you sit next to every day on public transportation.

Picture #4 As you wander the ruined town, you see a spider the size of a dog wandering around. How did the spider get that big without radiation? Well, that is a story secret.. so I cannot mention it. What I *CAN* mention is Matt did an awesome job with the spider’s AI. It roams around looks for interesting things, like food (i.e. you) and when it spots you, it will chase after you. Do not even think about sneaking up on it, most spiders can see in all directions (didn’t they teach you anything in school?) and will then chase after you.

Picture #5 Spiders are still susceptible to mega beat downs, even after society collapses.

Picture #6 Wandering around Blac Arth. Again, story related *buttons lip*.

Picture #7 Talking with John Hodgson, a lone mechanic who still lives in the ruins.

Picture #8 A picture of the AI range Matt built. As you can see, creatures have a fairly long range to find things of interest. Which makes me happy. I dislike games where monsters, people, whatever stand on the same spawn point forever and ever (*cough cough* Dragon’s Dogma  *cough wheeze cough*)

Welpy welptones.

That is this update! There is OBVIOUSLY a long way to go before this game even hits Alpha.. but I think it is coming along nicely. It definitely has soul.

Stay tuned for the next update… which will come from the most magical place on earth!

No, not Hogwarts. Man, Harry Potter fans are a rabid lot.

Hope great things are happening to you, and if not, hang in there. I know some days are bad, but you just have to keep trying.

From Black Earth to Black Earth, in many easy steps. Now with vanilla frosting!

With less than a week left to go for my trip to California to attend the Ultima Dragons 25th anniversary and then GDC, I have been a busy bee.  I stung two people in the parking lot at the local store, but they sprayed me with mace.

But enough about my love life…

*pause for laugh*

Let’s look at how Post Apocalyptic Black Earth is coming a long shall we?

The actual map of Black Earth is coming along nicely. It is starting to look a lot like the real life town it is based on as you can see from the above pictures. It has a long way go however. Better shading. Some nicer models etc… but we will get there, this is only about a month worth of work if you have been following a long at home.


Next thing is adding dialouge. Using a tool called ‘Fungus” (No really. That is what it is called), I added some text during the beginning of the game as a little bit of backstory.  As well as an NPC that can be found in game that will give more backstory, as well as your first few missions in the game.

That is where the game is at… it still looks REALLY crude since it just uses free assets from the Unity store, but they are good place holders for the time being until all the mechanics are in operational order.

There we go… There is also basic combat and picking up weapons and inventory… but I will save that for tomorrow.

Black Earth is coming along nicely I think.  Black Earth… aaaaah Black Earth.

Ahem. Hope your Sundays are sunny and bright.

It’s time to play the music, It’s time to light the lights, It’s time to meet the Mad Overlord on his first video ever! Oh yeah, why don’t you get things started…. yadda yadda.

Hey there everyone! Happy Frigga’s Day! As I am getting ready for the last few days before my trip to California, I wanted to try and get a video up!  While I really do not want to change the site into a vlog.. or a podcast.. or anything like that. It would help immensely to be able to do a video to describe something.

Anyway,  ignore the fact I have a Jolly Rancher in my mouth at the beginning there, for some reason I did not think the sound would come through…  Well, I was horribly wrong.

Hope your days are treating you well! Or as well as they can treat you after seeing that bit of nonsense I posted. But try anyway.

A Mad Overlord Studios Mad Overlord.

Hey there fun peeps! Short post today, getting more stuff ready for GDC and one I want to show off here. Doesn’t he look awesome?  The world needs more insane geniuses that is for sure!

Just a heads up. Do you know what Twine is? If so, there is a Twine version of the first part of the book coming soon. It will be an unedited version, but I’d like folks to play through it so I can get feedback on it. I want your thoughts and opinions to help me shape the series!

Without further ado, here are samples of the minifigs I will be using as business cards at GDC this year.

I wanted to do something that would allow me to stand out in a crowd, since people usually have a stack of twenty to fifty business cards at the end of GDC. Plus, something that shows not only how innovative, and creative I can be, but shows that I am willing to go the extra mile to do something really outstanding, different and passionate for things that I work on (hopefully you cool folks already know this just from stopping by the the blog. Right? RIGHT?!?!).

Plus, they are little LEGO mad scientists Who the heck would not like that? Legos and mad scientists are the answer to everything awesome in the universe.

Hope the days have been treating you well everyone, it is 40+ degrees here today. Try to get outside and get some fresh air!

Take care!

Hey, that rhymes!

From Black Earth to Black Earth in four easy steps… Maybe.

Happy Mondays,

A few folks have asked me how do I do my world building, both for writing and the game I have been showing… That is a tough question. It is like asking someone, “How do you breathe?”  You just do.  I tend to be a highly detailed thinker as well, I love putting in endless amounts of details and backstory.. even if no one will ever know it but me.

But I do not want to blow you guys off, so I guess I will show you  a bit about my thinking process.  First off, I thought it would be interesting to explore the frigid north in a apocalyptic game. It seems after the fall of modern society, every where will be a desert; and if you live in the northern USA or Canada, you find this idea kind of unlikely (its 10 F outside as I write this). Second, I wanted to base a game in the central USA. Most post apocalyptical stuff happens on the coasts of the USA or in Austrailia (Max Rockatansky, you are the man), but never in the mid-west.

With this in mind, I chose Black Earth, Wisconsin. One: For reasons I mentioned above, and Two: There is only one town named Black Earth on the whole planet -Three: The name fits the Post Apoc genre very well I think – and Four, the entire town is only about one thousand people. Small enough to have lots of wilderness, but large enough there will be enough stuff to tinker around with inside the borders of civilization (what those things are, you will have to stay tuned).

So without further adieu, here are the first four steps of the creation of Black Earth.
1. The actual google maps picture (I actually drove to Black Earth and took about 100 pictures of the town as well, but I am not sure you want to see all of those… ah heck I will throw some in – Those will be Pictures 2 and 3 (yeah I am passionate, dedicated or maybe a bit crazy to actually go there and wander the streets for a day… or maybe all three). Picture 4 is of an adventure I wrote for Old School Quarterly (http://oldschoolquarterly.com/) but considering that we have been waiting for issue zero for two years… Lets just say I SUPER HOPE this mag finally gets off the ground. Picture 5 is the first map we did for the game, it is blocky since it was going to be an old school dungeon crawl like ‘Eye of the Beholder.”  The last picture is the most recent iteration, but I am not happy with the size… it should be bigger. But it is still functional. There might be a fifth version eventually.

Hopefully you found this look into my creative process interesting. Thanks for stopping by the blog! I’d treat you to a cup of coffee if I could.

P.S. Haven’t forgotten about poor Hendl’s Landing, but GDC is two weeks away.. so that is kind of priority one for a bit. Try to understand… Try to understand… TRY, TRY, TRY TO UNDERSTAAAAAAND… I’m  a magic maaaaan! (guitar solo ).

Why do you build me up (build me up) buttercup, baby Just to let me down (let me down) and mess me around. And then worst of all (worst of all) we build a suburb of GRIM FUTURE!!!! (guitar solo).

Haaaaaaappy Frigga’s day fun friends of friendly funniness (is that a word?). Anywho, just over two weeks to go until GDC (gdconf.com) and I am working my little tailbone off to have cool stuff to show. Whether I am showing off my mad writing, design or level building skills… your friend and mine, me, is talented at many different things and hopes to impress a lot of folks at the conference this year. So lets do this!

Today we are going to keep looking at the game Matt Ciarlante and I are working on (back off ladies, Matt is engaged and I am just Gonzo levels of weird). There is a suburb of Blac Arth (the name of the town), that was walled off and used for growing crops for the settlement, but something happened (it always happens that way doesn’t it… you are just hanging out, trying to survive and BIPPITY BAM! Something horrible happens. Luckily there is always a protagonist right around the corner to help you out. Those protagonists have great timing like that).

Oh, so what happened in the suburb where they grew crops, you ask? Well that would be telling now wouldn’t it? It would ruin the surprise. Like saying Rosebud is the sled. Vader is Luke’s father. Jersey Shore was cancelled in 2012 and no one really noticed.  Spoiler stuff like that.


MMMMMAYBE, if you guys are really good. I mean, like call your mom levels of good (or visit her grave, its the right thing to do), I will reveal some fun details about the game in the near future. Until then, a few more pre-pre-pre alpha screen shots will tie you over for a while I hope.

Till next time, hope everything in your life is going your way.