You may have noticed a slowdown in Daily Draw submissions. "Things going on" have kept me from having much time to hole myself up in my room and draw nice pictures, and said things will continue through next weekend. So, rather than submit a bunch of lame rushed things, for the sake of quality I'm taking the remaining ten days and moving them to March. The calendar at the top of the page has been updated to reflect this. If I do get the chance to draw something during this week, I'll re-update the calendar.
Sorry I blanked out for a couple days over the weekend, things were a bit hectic. I made up for it, though, by making three drawings on Sunday. You can tell they're three drawings and not one big drawing, because I drew each one differently. Vaporeon is made from borderless vector shapes, jolteon is also vector, but with stylized borders and simple shading. Flareon was done freehand on a tablet.
If you look at the top of the page, right below the news box, you'll see I put up a little calendar thing for the daily drawings. In previous ones I've just made weekly collages for the site while putting the individual drawings up on tumblr. Now if you don't want to check tumblr, you can just stop by this page and click the calendar link to see the associated drawing. I'll be adding drawings to the calendar daily, so you don't even have to wait until the end of the week to see them.
Speaking of Lego, I saw The Lego Movie on Saturday (which clearly inspired that day's drawing) and it was really great. The animation's really cool, especially the ocean made out of Lego bricks. It's also funny, and has that kind of nostalgic feelgoodedness that puts one in a great mood for several hours afterward. The movie forced me to go home and put together a Lego set in the middle of the night.
Speaking of the best things to come out of Europe, tonight CBS aired The Beatles' 50th anniversary special, and it was also great. The guest musicians did a great job, as did Paul and Ringo themselves. Seeing the entire audience of grown adults singing along with Ringo on "Yellow Submarine" brought a tear to my eye. You don't see that kind of simple, innocent fun very often anymore. Bonus points to the musical guests for playing a couple obscure songs like "Hey Bulldog". I just wish the special could've been longer... even after two and a half hours they had barely scratched the surface of The Beatles' catalogue.
For as long as they've been in there, the old Flash games that I have inside of the Arcade section of the site have had an annoying issue: If you open a game, close it, and then open it again, the collision detection stops working (among other things). I could never figure out what the problem was, nor could I find anything useful about it through web searches. But the other night I had a moment of inspiration and figured it out.
If you have no interest in Flash or ActionScript, skip ahead to the next paragraph. Okay, so in Flash, programmers who try to code using best practices tend to put a lot of their script in external ActionScript classes that are attached to the stage or to certain objects. People who are inexperienced or just in a hurry tend to write their code directly to the timeline. As it turns out, if you attach an AS2 swf inside of an AS3 swf, these external classes will load correctly the first time, but will not load on subsequent attempts. So basically I had to uglify all my code by moving it out of the classes and into the timeline. It pained me.
Now all of the games will work right no matter how many times you close and open them. But the code changes resulted in a few tweaks being made to City and Spikeball. In City, you can no longer resize objects. Not because it's impossible but because it would've been annoying to reimplement in a new way. I don't mind removing that feature much, though. I made up for it by adding a few new headlines to the in-game news ticker. In Spikeball, moving the code over resulted in a few unexpected glitches that I liked enough to preserve, so I added a new game mode that enables these glitches. I call it Unfair Mode. In Unfair Mode, the balls will change trajectory every could seconds, their maximum speed will gradually increase, and the level itself will shrink when certain scores are reached. Because you won't be able to grab many keys in this mode, your score will also constantly increase just for surviving.
While I was messing around in old code, I decided to try and add a high scores leaderboard to the Spikeball game. It isn't implemented yet, but it's very close. I'll try to have it in sometime in the next few weeks.
On the art front, I drew a pikachu but ran into some complications. Out of everyone I've shown it to, the unanimous opinion has been to go with Solution B, so expect a more finished version of that next week as well. As for the art section itself, there are no visible changes for this update, but I've been doing a ton on the backend. Pretty soon each image page will include links to its corresponding pages on different art sites and tumblr, so if you feel the need to comment, favorite, or reblog, you'll be able to do so on your preferred domain. And as I've said many times before, in the near future you'll be able to filter the art section so you don't have to load and look through 150 thumbnails at once.