Introductions

September 3, 2008

Wow, it has been a while since I posted anything here.  We’ve been really busy lately, and I just finished the introduction before crashing in bed last night.

I’m pretty happy with it, each branch gives a hint at how those Empires will work.

The Elar branch is fairly friendly, leading you through each step with the trainer always seeming to know as soon as you do something (Elar have a slight precognition).

The Bileath branch, by far my favourite, is all about the money.  They force all new members to be valued, just as the Delinoth (race that founded the Bileath) culture dictates.  Players will be given a large sum of money at the start, and MUST pay for each lesson they complete.  Upon completion of each lesson they will be rewarded with a payment towards their new “life debt” but almost never more than what they paid for the lesson.  In the end they are left with the same small amount of money the other branches have, and no life debt.

The Trekat branch is very arrogant, as the Gemadak believe everyone else is inferior, as the players progress they are treated better until finally considered a member of the Empire.

Travel

July 21, 2008

Last week I’ve been quite, probably something to do with being in Shanghai and China blocking access to wordpress… maybe… But, I’m in Hong Kong now!

Work on Polaris has continued, been working on the script for the Bileath branch of the intro and quite liking it.  It should really help bring new players into the roleplay of the Corporate Empire.  We also finished off another skill, Infestation, which is one of (currently) two branches of Overgrowth.  These skills will take a normal Elementalist and make them more druid like… but not in the way you are thinking.

For those that come here looking for information on the Asus EEE pc, I’ve heard that the NDISWrapper method works better for wireless on the 901(and 1000), I’m going to test it out and let you know how it goes.

An update, I got it working!  Here’s what you need to do after installing the drivers per my last post:

1) In network-manager get it to connect to anything, if nothing shows up just put any for ESSID and mode DHCP then use ‘sudo dhclient’ and it should connect up for you.

2) Once connected run the magic command… ‘sudo iwconfig <interface, mine is ra0> key open’

3) Boom, you should have a connection.  A note, for some reason firefox keeps starting in offline mode when on wireles(at least for me), if yours does that just goto File and uncheck Work Offline.

Asus EEE PC 901!

July 5, 2008

Yup, I went out and got one a couple days ago, wow these things are small.  Really takes a few minutes to get used to the size of the keyboard, but once you’ve adapted it’s smooth sailing from there.

Now for the painful parts…

Only the XP version of the 901 is available right now, that means only 12G of space (Linux version has 20G) and… well, it’s got windows on it.  Took me about 6 hours before someone told me the Linux version wasn’t released yet.  So I broke down and got the XP one.  I really needed one as I’m going on vacation in a week.  Going to visit a friend in Shanghai, then head down to Hong Kong.  After that it’s off to the producers meeting in the states, and then to Kuala Lumpur with my wife.  Lots of flying, and always got work to do.

So, we all know what happened to XP the second I got home, wipe and replaced with Ubuntu.  Of course things couldn’t be easy, both the wired and wireless drivers wouldn’t work.  Ok, shouldn’t be a problem right… just go find the right drivers… oh was I wrong.

First, the EEE has no optical drive, and with no network connection I had to download the missing packages and put them on a USB drive to move over.  Then you discover that package requires another one… repeat, a lot.  Finally get it, nope… doesn’t work.

Next step, try the IRC rooms, not always so helpful, but sometimes you find a nice guy/gal that knows what they are doing.  Spent all day on it, ended up with what should have worked but didn’t… gave up.

Next day try some more… still no luck.  Ok, let’s just go back to XP and verify that the things actually work.  Oh wait… I deleted the recovery partition… oops.  Ok, I’ve got the DVD.. I’ll just make this into a bootable USB and run from there.  MANY MANY failed attempts later, I gave up and wife wanted to go out to the movies.

Get home, and found this great person by the name of SynrG on the Ubuntu IRC server.  They made me realize I was an idiot… never bothered to check to make sure the Cat5 cable was good… it wasn’t.  Magic, I now have wired connection.  Here’s what it took to make it work:

1) Install Ubuntu Hardy (8.04) with build-essential package (Can download here: http://packages.ubuntu.com/hardy/i386/build-essential/download).

2) Download Linux driver from ASUS (card is Atheros(R) AR8121/AR8113 PCI-E): http://support.asus.com/download/download.aspx?product=1&SLanguage=us-en&type=map&model=P5KPL-CM

3) Unrar them and transfer to USB drive and place in your EEE.

4) Cd to the src directory (<usb drive mount>/LinuxDrivers/L1e_Lan/l1e-l2e-linux-v1.0.0.4/src)

5) sudo KBUILD_NOPEDANTIC=1 make

6) sudo KBUILD_NOPEDANTIC=1 make install

7) A file called atl1e.ko is made, that’s your driver.  Move to: /lib/modules/2.6.24-16-generic/kernel/drivers/net/atl1e/at1le.ko  (If for some reason the atl1e directory isn’t made, just sudo mkdir atl1e, your kernel name may be different)

8 ) Move into the directory from step 7 and: sudo insmod ./atl1e.ko

That’s it, you should have working wired internet now!

Now for the wireless… I’m pretty sure it’s working and it’s just my router is acting up(wife says her laptop can’t connect either) I’ll look into it later.  In the mean time, here’s what I did to get it running (it can see the network, just not connect… but like I said, I think that’s my router).

1) Download driver from: http://www.ralinktech.com.tw/data/drivers/2008_0325_RT2860_Linux_STA_v1.6.1.0.tar.bz2

2) Unzip and move to USB drive(if working with second computer).  Move to EEE.

3) cd into 2008_0325_RT2860_Linux_STA_v1.6.1.0

4) sudo make

5) sudo make install

6) Reboot.

That’s it, should have the driver up and running.  I haven’t had much luck with it in roaming mode, so I would suggest going into the network-manager and taking your wireless connection off of roaming mode(just put any as ESSID and mode DHCP).  Then use ‘sudo dhclient’ to hopefully find and connect to an access point.

An update, I got it working!  Here’s what you need to do:

1) In network-manager get it to connect to anything, if nothing shows up just put any for ESSID and mode DHCP then use ‘sudo dhclient’ and it should connect up for you.

2) Once connected run the magic command… ‘sudo iwconfig <interface, mine is ra0> key open’

3) Boom, you should have a connection.  A note, for some reason firefox keeps starting in offline mode when on wireles(at least for me), if yours does that just goto File and uncheck Work Offline.

After all of that, I finally got things up and running.  Here are some other good sites to help out if you try the same things:

http://wiki.eeeuser.com/getting_ubuntu_8.04_to_work_perfectly – Great information on how to fix some of the smaller things that don’t work.

http://www.ubuntu-eee.com – A version of Ubuntu tailored for the EEE, really nice stuff.  Be sure to read their tip on fixing the shutdown process as there’s an issue where a sound module doesn’t get removed correctly so the computer never really shuts down.  Which reminds me, if you install Ubuntu be ready to yank the battery after the initial install as that fix obviously hasn’t been done yet.

I hate mornings, a lot… always have headaches in the morning, need to find some way to drink coffee while sleeping. *nod me*

Anyway, today I’m working on the Mutations skill, a primary skill for another subtype of mutants.  It’s a pretty neat skill, got the basic idea from Yrael’s post on our Skills and Abilities idea section of the forums.  Here’s the basics of it:

  • The main ability, DNA Manipulation has up to 15 ranks.  Each rank increases how many of the other abilities you can have active at any one time.
  • Each ability changes your body in some way such as producing claws or wings, venom sacs, etc.
  • Those abilities each have a cost to activate, between 1 and 3 (for the most part), that corresponds to your rank in DNA Manipulation.  In other words if I have DNA Manipulation at rank 5 I can activate one that costs 3 and one that costs 2, or maybe one that costs 3 and two that cost 1.
  • Most abilities either give you a basic attack, something defensive, or aide in the basic attacks (like venom sacs give claws a chance to do afflictions)

One of the secondary skills will be a form of Martial Arts, which will be able to take advantage of the powers you gain in the primary skill.  For example if you have claws then your martial arts punches attacks will be more damaging, where if you have the bones in your arm thickened(into a club) then forearm strike or elbow strike may be more effective.

So far I just have the outline for it, and some notes, but hope to make some good progress on it today.

Aerkin is still working on the Elementalists last skill, looks like he’s gotten pretty far into it, so hopefully it will be finished off soon.  Unkeml is still working on space, the never ending project… need to poke him and see where things are right now.

The begining

June 28, 2008

So, I’ve decided to go back to using a blog as a way to give the future players of Tears of Polaris more about myself and the progress of development.

For those of you that don’t know Tears of Polaris is a new game in development by Iron Realms Entertainment.  We’ve been in development for a little over a year and a half now, and hoping to start testing before the year is out.

As for myself, I’ve been a long time player and volunteer programmer for IRE for quite some time now.  At one point I tried to start my own company developing the same style games as IRE but things with my partner fell apart.  After that Mattew Mihaly and I discussed returning to IRE to create a new game for them.  After a few months of discussions we settled on a Sci-Fi game, which stayed unnamed for many more months before being named Tears of Polaris.

So here we are today, development has been going on for quite some time and things are really looking good!  In the future I’ll post more about what we’ve done and perhaps a little more about myself.

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