17 апреля 2017, Dublin City, Ireland

# Понедельник 20 твитов

Hello everyone! My name is Owen and I work at the nexus of playfulness, art and science. You an usually find me at @TheAllThing


My main work is DEEP, an experimental VR game controlled by breathing. You can check it out here


I’ve been working on DEEP for 4 years now, ever since the Oculus Rift kickstarter launched


It started as a side project, something I did during the free hours on the weekend, now it is my main focus.


For the first year I worked alone, then I teamed up worth the wonderful @Niki_Banda and ever since we make it together


But it is not just us, there is a @skooter500 who makes the fish AI and @ParadoxicalRec who does the music and sound


And there is an amazing team of behavioural scientists that test and measure the game


Our aim is to make an effective digital intervention to anxiety and depression


Terence Mckenna once said, the drugs of the future will be computers, and the computers of the future will be drugs


We strive to move in this direction

@gdunderhood Have you considered smartphones as alternative controllers? I mean, breathing into the mic and stuff? :)

I am actually going to try some mic input soon…


The amazing @EvanBalster who works on @SoundSelf gonna help me hack something together


Most of my work right now is VR related. I have been making stuff since I got my kickstarter DK1


I really dig VR a lot. In my view, it is a new medium, a new thing all together, rather then a computer gamer peripheral


In fact, I don't think games are gonna be the main use of VR, rather it will be used for creativity, work and education


With a little games and chill out experiences mixed in


Buy who the hell knows, I'm just some guy


No one predicted minecraft or 50 shades of grey or snapchat or any of the other big media winners of the last few years


And nobody knows what's gonna happen with VR

@gdunderhood So, you don't think that we gonna have some AAA-like titles on VR in the near future? :)

I don't think so, not in the next year anyway. Not profitable enough and anyway, I don't think people wanna play lo……


# Вторник 17 твитов

This is where I work, in a co-working space in Dublin where I rent a desk


I really need a work space to be productive, I go mad if I try to work from home for more then a day or 2


My day today
9:30-into office, emails, admin and catchup
11- call with Cambridge, my main freelance client
12- press interview


13:30- lunch with fellow dev (it's good to see people)
14- actual desiogn and development work for the rest of the day


My primary income comes from contract design work
The last one I finished was the Ice Cream Headaches expansion for Guild of @dungeoneering


But the main one I work on new is a big VR project for Cancer Research UK


We are building a cancer laboritoty in VR
here's how it works


A tumor is removed from a mouse or person and frozen
A special microscope is used to slice the smaple in very very thin slices, a few atoms


these slices are photographed and the images are sent to a team of astronomers (yeah astronomers!)


they use the same tools they use to get the position of stars from their telescope images to get the shape and position of each cell


the slices of cells then go on to be desolved in a special bath and their cellular and genetic information is extracted


this is where me and my team come in, we take all this data and rebuild the samples in Unity


the sample can then be manipulated and analysed in all sorts of ways


and the scientists can view the disease in its native 3d form rather then in 2d images and slices as they normaly do


If you are interested you can check out the project here…


the hope is the super rich data can lead to bespoke and more focused treatment plans for people and hence extend life and increase survival


We hope to make our software free to the public soon and open source as much as possible


# Среда 16 твитов

With my contracting work done yesterday I am free to work on my passion project today. Right now that means DEEP


We showed it in a gallery in London last week, a really fancy place


It was my first time showing it to the public in about a year and there were a few new features we were testing


And as always showing the work let's me know where the real problems are. Which, for me anyway, is usually a surprise


There are 2 areas in the world where the player is getting lost, I am going to work with Niki to create new paths in these places


Another big problem we uncovered is that the main code for the player in the game has finally grown too bloated and old


I am going to spend the day rewriting that, which is something I need to do before adding any more features or fixes


Todays job of rewriting the main player code is going ok.
Sometimes I feel like everytime I start a big programming job I change style


How do you write your code in Unity? One big component that does everything or little separate components for each job


Behold, the horrifying Unity GameObject I am rewriting today
This is what happens when I wait to long to cleanup my……


This object I supposed to know how full the players lungs are
There are 3 possible ways to know this


1 - my custom hardware
2 - xbox controller inputs
3 - the game breathes automaticly and you sync up with it


But now I want to add more
Vive controller movment
Vive Tracker
Head Movment


But the problem is that the current implementation is a mess so I am trying to clean that up first


for example, you cannot currently switch input when the game is running and there is no way to change it in stand alone builds


but I will fix that today, then I need to fix all the player code which is also kind of all over the place


# Четверг 19 твитов

I wanted to be a full time game developer/designer for the last 12 years or so, and it took about 10 years to make it happen


I started off studying in a small community college here in Ireland. Back then there were no real jobs here and no community to speak of


After the course I managed to get a job as a QA tester in vivendi. That was 10 years ago


I worked on World in Conflict (good), a FEAR expansion (bad) and a Crash Bandicoot PSP game (ugly)


I was not testing for gameplay or balance, but for translation. I had to make sure all the strings had been ported to the right language


It was pretty bleak and uninspiring work and when vivendi was sold to activision I failed the interview to say on board and was let go


After that I left games fro a while, going back to work in IT
I was a system administrator in a mortgage company for a while


when the housing market tanked I started fixing peoples computers at home
not the worst job, but weird and unpredictable


Then, one day, Peter Molineux was speaking at a local college
This was when he still riding high on Fabel but already there was cynicissm


But my trepidation was swept away, he gave an amazing a passionate talk
I was back in!


I convinced the college to let me enrol in their new Masters in Digital Games
This was kind of them as I did not actually have a degree


The workload was really high and I started to have trouble balancing the coursework and the computer fixing,I found it tough to switch gears


That's when I came upon the idea of teaching
Teaching game design would let me keep my head in the same space, deepen my skill and earn €€


I emailed every single college in the city that had a game programme offering my services
To my delight and surprise one got back


Up until last year, that is how I made ends meet
Teaching was the main back bone of my earning
It is a good route


As it allows you a good deal of free time, access to hardware, software and desk space and most importantly, inspiring students


I still teach 1 class a week, not for the money now, but because it keeps me fresh and stops me from getting into a rut


If you are interested in teaching a Game Design course everything you need can be found in @StoneLibrande's amazing GDC talk and website


# Пятница 18 твитов

The game development community here in Ireland and Dublin is really strong, we have all sorts for studios and creators


But it was not always this way, 5 years ago (when I graduated) there was little to speak of.


Popcap was here but they closed just as became qualified
There were a few people talking about games but always from a business or tech view


This was the first thing to change and I think it was the biggest part of kickstarting the industry here. A number of events were set up


.@dublingamecraft began to run regular 1 day game jams. This was a great place to get together and make things


A LOT of the successful teams here in Dublin were started at one of these jams. If you have not been to a game jam before GO DO ONE


If there is no game game in your area SET ONE UP!


The other event that emerged in this time was a One Game a Month Club
These folks would meet up and a pub each month


Someone would pick a theme, and the club would all make a little game based on that theme for next time


Well that was the idea. Usually about 3 people actually made a game and the rest just hung out


But hanging out is important!
Game dev can be lonley work and it can get isolating


1 Game and Month acts as a constant slow rolling game jam for hte community here. It is super great


Around that same time I started @DubLUDO
This was my main contribution to the community here


Every month we went to a pub, brough our semi functional prototypes, gave feedback, drank beer and chatted
Couldn't be simpler


If there is no local game dev scene in your area starting something like this is probobly one of the best investments you can make


All you need is a Facebook event, a pub willing to reserve a few tables and 2 other people that want to make games to come along


The first one I ran had abotu 10 people at it, by the time I wrapped it up we usually had more then a hundred.


I never spent a penny on it, and I had a great time running the events and seeing it grow


# Воскресенье 23 твита

Hello team, it's my last day with you, if there is anything you would like to hear about please let me know


And if anyone has any questions about VR design, teaching game design or running game design events just let me know


I have been working at becoming a game designer (as opposed to developer)for the last 5 years & honestly I only now feel I'm finding my feat


One of the things that helped is reframing the skill as a vocation, something to be mastered over decades or a lifetime


No one would expect a doctor, painter or engineer to be good after a few years and I don't think game design is any different


This really helped me struggel through my weaker work and have patience with myself


The best thing for getting better at game design faster we playing and studying boardgames


You need 2 things to be an apprentice level game designer
1- The Language
2- Game Desing Literacy


The Language is important
You need to have a name for something to think about it and play with it and change it


The God of magic and the God of writing is the same God in my country and many others


Once you have a name for a thing you can work with it


You can pick up the Language by reading game design books, watching GDC vault videos and listening to game design podcasts


You can even make up your own if you like


But this is only half the battle you need Literacy


You must become like a cook, carefully tasting your designs


You will see what is missing and where is it lacking bit it it only with Literacy you will know what to add


This need some pepper
That needs some tension
They need some sugar
and this needs more predictability


The best way to get literacy fast is to play and study as many boardgames as you can
Boardgames are great for game designers as you


I teratogenic directly with the game rules and systems opposed to computer games where it is all done through expensive art and edifice


If you can build up a literacy of mechanics, interactions, systems and experiences you will have a pallet of options


when trying to solve a design problem or add a new feature or just start a new project


Thanks for being with me this week folks, if you want to stay in touch you can find me at @TheAllThing


.@TheAllThing As per tradition, here is my desk
This is actually cleaner the usual