Thursday, 16 November 2017

Journey into CAOS

I've been completed tuned out of the internet over the past little while because I've been busy with exams in real life, and now that I'm done with them I come back online to see the CCSF is in less than a week. Exciting, but I feel bad for not having anything to contribute, so what is my immediate reaction? Let's rustle up something to contribute, of course. I only have four days but I'm sure I can pull something together, right...?

I will give you the disclaimer that there is a chance these plans could still all backfire horribly, so if you never see a contribution from me please don't judge me too hard...

Now, I'm not going to tell you what I'm working on (that would ruin the fun) but I what I will say is that it involves some CAOS - which, for the record, I have never used before, so even though I do have some minimal experience with other coding languages it will be interesting to see if I can get my head around it quickly enough to pull something together in time. But the relevant part (and why I'm writing this to begin with, other than so everyone knows I'm not 100% dead) is that I found some really cool CAOS resources that I thought might be super useful for anyone else who's interested in learning how to code in CAOS. These are just a few starters, I might add to the list if I find some more or even make a dedicated page for it, but here are the links: (look for COB Author's Guide)

Happy coding everyone! May you fail less at it than I have so far :)

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Theme Updates

Just a quick note... you may have noticed some slight changes to the layout of the blog. Namely, I've added a lovely list of links to other blogs and sites in the Creatures community, I've set up tags on all the posts to help you find specific subjects more easily, and I've adjusted some of the CSS on the blog posts to make them a tad easier to read. Happy reading :)

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Operant Conditioning

I don't know how many of you are familiar with real world psychological theories but there's one theory called operant conditioning that I was musing over the other day (actually I had to learn about it for school but whatever) and I realised with that it actually fits the Creatures model of learning surprisingly well.

Monday, 2 January 2017

Treba's Adventures

Happy new year everyone!

All right, let's get back into this: as you might remember from my last post, I've been playing around with this new Norn of mine, Treba. You can read about her here. So far there hasn't been too big a difference between her and other Norns I've raised, but so far she's only been alive for half an hour and most of that time was spent in the company of other Norns, so it's too soon to really say whether or not the changes I've made will have had a big impact on her behaviour itself. So, it's time for the next instalment in Treba's life.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Treba the One-Drive Norn

Looking through some of my recent posts... I haven't done a crazy genetic experiment in a while! Time to change that.

A while ago I was reading one of Jessica's posts on Discover Albia and it got me thinking: what would happen if you ticked "Winner takes all" in the drive lobe? It would mean the Norn could only feel one drive at once, but how would that actually affect the Norn in a practical way?

I think you know where this is going...

So, in this Norn I'm only going to make one single change: switching the drive lobe to WTA. If you're not familiar with what that option does, it makes it so that only one neuron can fire in the lobe at once, and the neuron which has the strongest value will be the one to fire. In the context of the drive lobe, it means that only the most pressing need will registered by the Norn.

Meet Treba, a cute little Cheri Norn whose wellbeing and happiness I have probably just permanently destroyed. But we'll see how she turns out.

Sunday, 4 December 2016

Blog Carnival Day 7

And now it's time for the final blog carnival post for this year's CCSF. It's been really fun to see what others have to say about the topics and to write about them myself. The final topic:

"Why do you like Creatures? If your interest in it has come and gone and come again, what brings you back? Despite how hard it can be to run on modern machines and the total lack of official support now, why do you play?"

Why do I love Creatures? Because I love my creatures! It's as simple as that. You can't go past how adorable those sweet lil Norns are, silly as they may be. Seeing them interact and wander about is simply a delight.

On the other hand, I love how complex the game is in regards to the genetics. There's just no other games like it, with the way that it simulates a whole brain for the creatures, and how every gene is mapped out thoughtfully.

Another thing is the innovation it allows - you could go into the genetics kit and completely change everything to make Norns work in new ways. And if you invest the time to learn CAOS, you can also make your own objects to put into the game.

It's interesting that the question specifically mentions interest in the game waning and returning, because that is something that's happened to me in the past. And really, I think what brings me back is simply that I'd open the game again and be struck by this sudden wave of: "OMG, I remember this, I bloody love this!". As soon as I start to hear the sounds of Albia again I just feel so totally immersed and it just feels so right and all the reasons I love Creatures just come rushing back to me, especially because the things I love Creatures for aren't really things I've ever seen in a video game outside Creatures.

I think it really all boils down to just how unique the game is. I've never seen another game anywhere that's even remotely like this.