Friday, July 29, 2011

Software Patents Metaphor

I'm a chef, and I've just patented a new recipe: chips with *2* sprinkles of salt over them. So if I see anyone sprinkling between 1 and 3 sprinkles of salt over their chips, expect a letter from my lawyer.

-- Update --

I've just had an amazing idea: chips with 3! Yes 3! sprinkles of salt over them! I don't know how I do it. I might start to sell this new recipe over the internet, but of course it will take you more than 1-click to buy it.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Tower Invaders: Hints'n'Tips

It was my deliberate intention to make Tower Invaders quite difficult from the start. I didn't want players to have to wade through loads of screens of baddies before they got to the challenging bit.

Anyway, here are some quick hints'n' tips for those who might be having some problems defeating the invaders. I like to think of the game as more of a puzzle or even strategy game. There is a lot of strategy involved in what at first seems to most simple of choices:-

* Position of towers is important!
Even though the invaders move from left to right (and back, and so on) covering the whole width, the position of the towers is still very important. Statistically, the invaders will be mostly above the middle of the screen, so that is the best area to place your pulse lasers. However, this also means that this is where the most bullets are going to fall; if you have the full version, shields are a good idea, especially on towers you've spent a lot of creds on upgrading.

* Sell towers that are about to be destroyed!
You will get the same amount of money back for a brand new tower as for one that's about to crumble. You do get more for upgraded towers, though obviously not as much as you paid for them. Wait until a tower is about to go belly-up before selling it.

* Keep Zappers to the side!
Since Zappers will always hit an invader, keep them out of the way of bullets. As mentioned earlier, the most bullets will fall in the middle of the screen, so you might as well build Zappers to the far sides, where they will have much less chance of being hit.

* Upgrade towers to limit your exposure!
It costs the same to buy two towers as it does to buy one and upgrade it. Even though an upgraded tower will shoot about 10% less than two basic towers, those two basic towers cover twice as much area, so they have twice as much chance of being hit by a bullet. Also, you'll need 2 shields to protect them. Of course, they will be able to incur twice as much damage, so things aren't always so clear cut.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Android Apps: Minimum Price

After putting my first paid-for app on the market place, I noticed that the minimum price you can sell an app for in the US is 99c. This is strange, since it's possible to sell it for 50p, which is less than 99c. Isn't it usually the UK that gets the raw deal where price conversion is concerned?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My First Android Game!

I've just released my first Android game with the help of Dipper (who provided the graphics) called "Tower Invaders". It's a bit like Tower Defence mixed with Space Invaders, and (even though I say it myself) I actually quite like playing it, which is always a good sign.

It's free and available at Let me know what you think!