Running out of Vector Puns

I’m absolutely amazed at what an incredible time suck Stardew Valley is despite the fact that I actually grew up in a farming community before moving to “the big city” and was glad to leave it behind. I’m sure some articles could be written on how well designed it seems to be; how does time seem to move so fast during the day but still take a long time for a month to go by? I can’t even!

However, this isn’t a blog about my desire to sit around for hours trying to force feed people berries that may somehow taste like salmon and waiting for virtual cauliflower to grow, so lets get on with things.

This week’s accomplishments are tenuously attached to game development in as much as I spent the time working on some articles for my math for game developers pages. For those just joining us, my current goal here is a pong game (of all things) and I’ve decided that the little “engine” that I’m working on during some game development learning and explorations should have some semi-complex collision handling.

It’s totally out of place in something as simple as a pong game, but I feel like I’m learning and advancing skills, which is the whole point of my explorations (I’m pretty sure I’m no @ConcernedApe for example, but I’m OK with that). I also feel that this time spent now is not wasted because I’m going to need it for later games, and does it really matter if progress slows down now or then if it has to slow down anyway?

Perhaps most importantly, one of my goals was to write both this blog and some pages that try to explain some things for newer people, and I know that if I don’t take the time to do that now, I probably never will.

For this week’s contributions, I’ve done the following:

  • The page on vector basics was tweaked a bit to include a couple of extra diagrams and some more explanatory text on visualizing the addition and subtraction of vectors.
  • I added in a new page on the Law of Cosines, which I’m not sure is actually a useful thing to know for game development but I’ve included it anyways because:
  • A page on the Dot Product has been added, which includes a bit of text that explains how vector subtraction and the law of cosines come together to help define what is actually going on here.

Code wise I have been tweaking up the code from last week. I also spent a little bit of time on a web based “vector explorer” that would interactively show off vector operations. I’m not entirely happy with it so I don’t know if it will go anywhere besides being a simple test bed for me to make sure that my classes are operating as I would expect. If I can polish them up enough, I might post it up somewhere, but my gut feeling is that I could very easily sidetrack myself even farther from my game development goals by going down that kind of road.

Time is going to be at more of a premium than usual for the next couple of weeks; some family is coming to visit and I’m scheduled to have a minor surgery shortly thereafter. It’s going to be interesting to see how I can fit everything in here. In particular the family visit is going to coincide with next week’s blog updates, so I’m going to have to work extra hard (hopefully) to get it done and ready to launch ahead of time.

Lets see how well that works out!