Update

Not much development to report.  Free time is still at a premium.  I have been trying out some games to get ideas, though.  Tried some web games on Kongregate ("The Space Game" is very good), pc games on Steam("Fate of the World" is very tough, but thought provoking), Dwarf Fortress, Minecraft, and X-Com on Play Station.  At least I'm having fun.

Looking ahead, my focus is shifting toward doing a re-write of Cellular Explorer.  Some of the research on design patterns gave me some new ideas on how to make it work better.  I also want to re-focus Cellular Explorer to work exclusively with binary cells.  Some of the experiments with integer states got a little too unwieldy. 

Matt Ahlschwede 12/6/02014

Tree sprites

Not a lot of work on code lately, but I have made some test sprites for individual trees.  I'd like to do a fractal map for a future implementation of Explore!, so it will include smaller features like single trees.  The concept I am starting with is to create a layered sprite for each tree, with separate sprites for: Branches and trunk, early spring foliage, filled in summer foliage, partial autumn foliage, and full autumn foliage.  Additional layers include flowers, fruit and snow.  here is a basic test sprite sheet:  

Matt Ahlschwede 11/24/02014

MVC

Reading on software design patterns has led me to the Model/View/Controller pattern.  This is a very useful concept.  I haven't tried it out yet, but have read enough to see how it works.  My plan is now to do a full re-write of Explore! using MVC, and then to go back and use it to re-write Cellular Explorer.  

Matt Ahlschwede 11/21/02014