Wednesday, August 8, 2018

JaSmix 2018, Ludum Dare 42, More Tactics Ogre stuff

JaSmix 2018 was this past weekend, and was a great success!  Big thanks to everyone who came to the event, as well as the people who helped me make it all possible.  It was really satisfying to see all the planning and prep work that went into it pay off...it really looked like everybody was having a great time.  My classes went pretty alright too, all things considered!  Every time I teach I learn a little more, I think, about how to hold a workshop, keeping things going, and how to really convey and drill information down.  In any case, as I've written about before, my overall understanding of dance and partnering mechanics is a lot better than it used to be, so at the very least it's easier for me to drill down into what works and what doesn't and what are the important things to keep in mind and fix.

We had quite a good variety of workshops this year and I think 6 was a really good number to have!  Happy that that worked out since I have been conservative for the past 2 years with only 3 workshops each time.  Something that really struck me over the course of the day is just how much more comfortable and confident I have become with my own movement over the course of time.  That of course is mainly from social dancing, but also from glowsticking, and also my growth as a person too, perhaps.  It's really cool that social dance has provided a structure within which to practice and develop these things, I think.

Ever since last year I think, JaSmix has really become my most anticipated dance event of the year, haha, not really even close.  Viennese Ball of course is always really fun to see everybody and mingle, and Big Dance is great as a long-lived tradition that pulls out a good crowd of people, but I feel like JaSmix really focuses on social dance itself -- both improving and learning about it, and also having a lot of fun dancing to a night of great music.  There is a sort of very different energy when you're the one running an event, but at the same time it was intensely rewarding to see everyone out on the dance floor with such good energy.  Anyways, I'll definitely look forward to hosting it again next year.

And with that all squared away and in the books, the next thing to look towards is Ludum Dare 42!  Yeah...it's sort of one thing after another for me recently, haha.  Ludum Dare runs from Friday through Monday (this time with a new starting/ending time of 3:00PM instead of 6:00PM, which should be interesting), but I'll also be taking Thursday and Tuesday off, to give myself some much-needed respite and to recover from the craziness of LD and all that.  I still have some prep work to do for LD over the next two days -- setting up the project, testing a few things, making a post on the site, and of course the most important part: grocery shopping for snacks and food!  I really have no idea what will come out of LD this time; I'm sure we will work very hard on something, but I think it feels quite chill going into it since we don't really have any particular aspirations or goals going into the event.

Tactics Ogre has continued to keep me thoroughly occupied during train rides and such, which has been really great.  I ended up on the neutral route first, and am in the middle of chapter 3 at the moment.  I definitely have a good handful of units / classes which I have been completely ignoring, like a reptile whom I recruited and turned into a hoplite and then promptly proceeded to leave at level 1 and never use.  It's getting to be super overwhelming with the sheer number of classes and units, haha!  I also started recruiting a bunch of beast and dragon classes, but I decided to just focus on my Gryphon for now.  I've got that Gryphon up to level 10 after some light grinding, so that's great.  (my "core" classes are at lvl 14, with a handful of newer ones at 10-11)  Denam is still really kicking butt as a Ninja, haha.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Ugh.  Starting yesterday, apps can no longer post to your FB profile, so automatic posting through services like IFTTT is a thing of the past now.  For me that means we're back to the dark ages where every time I make a blog post (like this one) I have to manually crosspost it to FB.  The silver lining is that now I'll just be making link posts, which means no more people just reading my posts on FB directly...you're gonna have to actually read it on this site itself, which is really what you ought to have been doing the whole time.  The automatic copy-paste onto FB broke all the formatting, linebreaks, and hyperlinks, so it was a wonder I even kept that enabled.


I was kind of overwhelmed and in the pits earlier this week, but I managed to hit bottom and am on my way up again, hooray.  We're getting all set for JaSmix on Saturday and the waltz workshop is coming along and coming together finally; I just have to make sure I can run through everything smoothly without wasting a bunch of time.

Tactics Ogre has been super fun and I've basically been spending all of my morning train rides playing it, whoops!  I just recruited 5 (!) more characters so I really don't know what I'm doing with so many people, haha...I have some new classes that are pretty low level (Dragoon, Warlock, Swordmaster, ...) so I might have to farm some EXP for them otherwise they'll forever be stuck underleveled.  I just got past a pretty tough rescue mission that took a number of tries (one where 3 units start dead and you need to use lifeline gem on them or win the whole battle before their timers expire), phew.

Denam (the main unit) right now is a ninja; he has good movement and speed and does really great double-attack damage against squishies like mages, and not bad damage against monsters either.
Then I've got a handful of frontline melee units -- warrior, knight, berserker, terror knight, which are all mostly interchangeable.  I have two archers, which have varying utility based on the targets (not very good at dealing damage to tanks).  A priest and a familiar, which have been pretty crucial in the harder missions for the healing they provide.  A wizard, who mainly just throws around dark magic damage, and then two spellblades (rune funcers) who can attack but also cast helpful supportive buffs.  That's essentially my main squad for now , but we'll see if I can get all the other classes up to snuff and see how they perform.