Archive for February, 2010

Helen is running a half marathon for charity – please sponsor her!

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

My partner, Helen, is going to run a half marathon in May. It’s the BMO Vancouver Marathon & Half Marathon Run (BC) and is raising money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada (LLSC) whose aim is to to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.

Helen has run a half marathon for charity before in the UK in 2008, but she has since fallen out of practice at running and now has less than 3 months to train up to be able to run 13 miles (about 21 km)! She gets up at 5:45 twice a week (must to my chagrin) to go swimming and goes running on all the others days, except for one rest day. I know that she has the determination to, a) raise her sponsorship target of $2500, and b) complete the half marathon!

Please consider supporting her (and the charity) by making a secure online donation using your credit card using this link. You will receive an email confirmation, along with your tax receipt for your donation and Helen will be notified as soon as you make your donation.

We thank you in advance for your support, and really appreciate your generosity!

Helen and fellow runner Becky (Helen is the one on the right).

This is how beautiful Vancouver is

Friday, February 12th, 2010

I moved to Vancouver in November 2008 to work as a game designer/programmer for Big Fish Games. One of the reasons we decided to move here was that Canada has amazing scenery and Vancouver is in a fantastic beautiful location.

I love taking photos and here are some recent ones that I feel capture the essence of our local environment. Enjoy! (click images to enlarge them)

skyline 2

View from our rear balcony (we are seriously lucky to have such a great view).

nature 2

Bald Eagles nest here, North West of Vancouver.

islands 2

View out to sea from a roadside parking lot, North West Vancouver.

Games I played this week and IDEs I used

Monday, February 8th, 2010

Someone called Blitzplotter on the forums often asks what games we played over the last week and this time he also asked what IDEs we’d been using. I thought I’d post my answer here as it’s been a fun week with lots of variation and cool times gaming with my boys.

OK then, “top 5” games this week:

1) Half Life 2 Episode 2
2) Lego Indy 2
3) Trine (completed)
4) Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy (completed)
5) Either World of Goo or Lego Batman.

And that in fact is all I played this week, apart from Facebook games: Treasure Madness and The Warlords, and maybe Bejewelled Blitz. I recommend you check them all out if you like Facebook games (and even if you don’t!)

Oh wait, just realised I played a ton of XBox Live Arcade and Indie games (all demos) and some were neat such as:

Arkedo Series 01: JUMP!
Arkedo Series 03: PIXEL!
Miner Dig Deep
Magic the Gathering

Unfortunately Alien Breed Evolution didn’t do it for me, too dark and annoying. Shame as I loved the original games on the Amiga. There were quite a few other lacklustre titles too – I can understand that for Indie titles (people maybe just starting out), but not for Live Arcade titles.

Top 5 IDEs used this week:

1) Visual Studio 2008 Express with XNA
2) Flex with AS3.
3) MS Frontpage and Notepad++ (for my new Aikido website). Yes I know I’m stretching the limit of what an IDE is.

And that’s it. Sadly I didn’t use Blitz this week. Well I fired up the IDE to answer a question for someone.