Friday, September 28, 2007

A small victory for Netbeans Game Builder

I scored myself a cool iPod Nano by demoing NetBeans 6.0 Game Builder :)

The story is as follows:

While working on Cotopia I've realized that the tools available to game developers are pretty limited in the Mobile Java area. There were some attempts at Game API support in an older Nokia toolset, but overall the tools were either pretty crappy or didn't integrate with MIDP API easily enough.

In the beautiful world of open source there was nothing more natural than to write a tool for myself - a NetBeans Mobility Pack plugin called "Game Builder". It is part of NetBeans 6.0 Beta 1 which you can download from here:

and here are some screen-shots of how the tool works:

Local Sydney JUG (Java User Group) had a "Lightning Talks" event during which around a dozen speakers had 5 minutes to talk about a Java related subject, then audience voted for their favorite talk. There aew some pretty cool prizes available to the top 3 speakers (some donated by another cool open source company - Atlassian, some by JetBrains, and some usual give-away stuff from Sun). The main prize (in my eyes) was Apple TV, then there were 3 IntelliJ Idea licenses, and iPod Nano.

I didn't get the first place - that was taken by a presented who (i swear) must be a stand-up comedian :) and he without hesitation chose the Apple TV. I got 2nd place (must work on being more funny dammit) and I chose the iPod, I did think about the Idea licenses for a bit but NetBeans 6.0 is just getting so good that I probably wouldn't make much use of them.

It is my hope that soon I'll be able to use Game Builder to create a bigger and better multiplayer game (RPG style) for Cotopia and take our community to the next level.

Casual Gaming Party

I have been invited to casual gaming party to San Francisco Minna Mingle. It was very good event and I have met many great people. Basically everyone from casual gaming industry was there.

Silicon Valley have real advantage, that things are happening here every day. Different conferences, events, parties ...

Monday, September 10, 2007

Attending the TechCrunch20/40 conference

I will be attending TechCrunch20 (now renamed to TechCrunch40) conference in San Francisco this September 17-18.
I also plan to stay for some time in San Francisco (about 4 weeks). If you are there during that time and would like to meet, please contact me at

What's coming up...

Over the past few weeks we've gotten a number of requests to fix bugs and to introduce (in some cases even re-introduce) features. Rest assured - work is under way to bring the functionality players have been asking for.

Here is a list of features that will make it into the next release which will be pushed out together with Battle Blocks:

1. Private games will be back (enable players to search for opponent by name)
2. Ability to access Cotopia WAP directly from main game menu
3. Updated help texts
4. Add date and time to forum posts
5. Ability to send an SMS to your friend with a link to a free Cotopia game download straight from the main menu
6. When searching for an opponent phone will vibrate and display will flash once opponent is found
7. During game play empty chat messages will be ignored
8. Fix for a much hated bug in our scoring system - if you know what it is you'll be happy to see it go away, if not - don't worry about it :)

As I've said before: let us know what you want. Most of the items in the list above are the result of requests from our players. If you find something you hate about our games or think up something you'd really like send us an email or an SMS.