Is it over yet?

3 more finals to go! I finished my IT201 final project today, it’s a silly little Flash presentation about a fake company. You can view the flash presentation here. I’m probably gonna take my online MIS final tonight, since I have 2 in-class finals tomorrow, and then it’s winter break time!!!!!

DDR Bass! DDR Bass!

All your bass are belong to DDR Solo – Bass Mix. We took Brian to Jersey Gardens so he could go christmas shopping, on the condition that he let us stop by the arcade to play DDR. The arcade has a machine called “DDR Solo – Bass Mix” which has corner arrows along with the regular 4 panels, making it a lot harder. Anyway, I finally passed a non-stop megamix, and got this really neat online score password thing:

I love my camera phone 🙂 Anyway, as we were about to leave, I noticed Jay still had 1 song to go, and it had superstar! I failed after like 2 seconds because I suck at hitting the diagonal panels, but it was fun, and I love that song.

Also, I got bored of doing my final project for IT-201 in Flash, so I made this little animation for Jay. Noone else will get the joke, but it was fun. Anyway, I guess I should get back to this project..


Teaching an old dog new tricks

Ok, so I was feeling overly creative this weekend and added a pretty cool effect to the water in ZZT. Check it out: (click to enlarge)

Of course, it looks even cooler animated. Hmm, I think this is also the first screenshot I’ve posted in here that was taken from the Dreamcast instead of from Windows. yay!

Also, I’ve finally implemented enough of ZZT-OOP for the Town of ZZT’s ending sequence to work, so the game is finally completable! If all goes as planned, I should have a beta release ready for the holidays.


Welcome to Newark

Ok, so I don’t know if this is funny or sad, or just Newark. I’m staring out the window of my apartment, when an Ambulance (or some other vehicle with sirens and lights, my glasses weren’t on) comes up to the gate to enter the parking lot. But the guard wasn’t around to let it in. So it’s sitting there, lights flashing, making funny siren noises for at least a minute or two, trying to get the attention of someone to open the gate. It’s not like there was noone out there, either. i saw plenty of people walking around out there, just noone cared enough to let the vehicle in. I’m glad to know that if I suffer some horrible accident, the ambulance will have to spend several minutes sitting outside the parking lot instead of helping me. Welcome to Newark.


It’s Thinking(TM)

Ok, so I’m talking to James today and he sends me some Japanese text in gaim. Since I’m on Windows, I didn’t have the Japanese font installed, so I figured.. hey, IE likes to bother me with annoying messages, lets make that japanese language pack box pop up! So I browse over to and ….. THERE’S A NEW SONIC GAME COMING OUT AT THE END OF THE MONTH!!!

Ok. So I’m a little behind in gaming news. I haven’t read a gaming mag since the last issue of ODCM (Official Dreamcast Magazine, for the uninformed). So anyway, Sonic Heros brings back some of the characters from Knuckles’ Chaotix: Espio the chameleon (the bestest, coolest character), Charmey Bee (the smallest, annoyingest character), and Vector the Alligator (Gil calls him Lizardo).

So anyway, to ease my excitement, I busted out the Genesis + 32x and played Knuckles Chaotix as Espio, teamed with Heavy, Lizardo, and finally Knuckles. After a few hours I finally beat the game, but couldn’t get all the Chaos Rings. Those special stages get incredibly hard, and Game Genie isn’t compatible with 32X, so I can’t even cheat 🙁

Anyway, back to James. I’m chatting with him, and I blurt out:

and he’s all like “wtf? that’s gibberish!” and I’m all like “Hello!? Sega slogan!”. For the uninformed, or those of you too young to remember, Welco Metot Henex Tlevel, or spaced correctly: welcome to the next level, was Sega’s marketing campaign for the SegaCD, an addon for the Sega Genesis. You know, the thing before the Saturn, which is the thing before the Dreamcast. Yes, it’s a sad state of affairs, but some of the youngins out there aren’t familiar with the Genesis.

Anyway, while trying to prove my case to James, I took this pretty little picture with my phone:

It’s Sonic CD, with WELCO METOT HENEX TLEVEL proudly displayed on the front. I also found the most amazing livejournal entry ever while searching google for said phrase:

Google only turns up 9 pages that match Sega’s old advertising phrase. I want to be the tenth one. =)

Amazing. If google manages to find this, I suppose I’ll be number 14 or so!


gobble gobble

Happy day after turkey day.



Let’s Dee Dee ARRR!!!

ok, so FedEx brought us an extra-special present today, our no-solder PS2 mod chip! It’s pretty neat, we just pop in the Magic Swap 2.0 disc, wait for it to say “Insert Disc”, hold down the eject button and throw in DDR Extreme and push X!

Jay and I have been playing DDR Extreme all day. It doesn’t have as many songs as the Arcade version, but it still has a lot! It also has the cutest backgrounds ever! The dancing cactuses and the latin guys with the maraccas just crack me up!

Anyway, it doesn’t work with Playstation 1 games, so next time at home I’m gonna grab my GameShark so we can do the PS1 swap trick. Maybe at some point we’ll get a real mod chip for the PS1 too, but since we’re all poor this solution works for now 🙂


Would you like fries with that?

Ok, so my roommate Rich brought home a ton of frozen hamburgers today. Apparently, since we live in an apartment, we can’t just fire up a grill — the smoke detectors see to that. So i had my first experience with cooking a burger in a frying pan. I now know that you’re not supposed to spray the pan with oil for this, because it splatters everywhere and burns you. It would be nice if there was some kind of warning about that on the packaging, but there isn’t.

So after I’m done cooking my burger, and my arm, I lift this thing out of the pan. It is literally DRIPPING with grease. Note to self: don’t oil the pan first next time, non-stick means non-stick! Mmm, less healthy than a fast food burger, with twice the wait! So i wrap the burger in a paper towel to absob some of the oh-so-unhealthy grease and start assembling my burger. I’ve been living off bologna, ramen, and cereal for the past few months, so I totally forgot about the whole shaking the mustard before you squeeze it concept… first squeeze, i get a BLAST of liquid all over my burger, followed by a few spurts of mustard. Yuck. At least I didn’t make the same mistake with the ketchup.

All things considered, it was a pretty good burger. We don’t have any lettuce, or tomato, or onion, because jay doesn’t believe in vegetables, but we did have american cheese to top it off with. Tasted pretty good. #1 item on christmas wish list: george foreman grill.

Perhaps I’ll stick to the microwavable, racecar-shaped chicken “fun” nuggets we picked up in the store today.


Welcome to the Town of ZZT

Greetings! Here is the first of hopefully many project-related updates!

My current active project is recreating the classic ZZT Game Creation System. ZZT is an ASCII-based system where you move your little smiley face around to interact with objects. The shareware version came with one full game, called The Town of ZZT, which I am currently using for testing. There are many many excellent games from many genres available at z2, as well as a download of the original MS-DOS version.

Important Note: The following screenshots and demos are of a pre-release version of DreamZZT and are subject to change at any time. Please link to this page directly and not to the screenshots, as there is no guarentee they will always be available at their current location, and they may represent bug and features that may not be available in a public version. These screenshots are a collection from several different platforms, including MS-DOS, Windows 2000, linux, and the Sega Dreamcast. The list of supported platforms is subject to change at any time. For information on the latest official release of DreamZZT, please visit the DreamZZT homepage.

Now that we’ve got the disclaimer out of the way, lets start our tour of DreamZZT 3.0 running Epic Megagames’ Town of ZZT. These screenshots have been scaled down so I don’t take up everyone’s friends pages. If you want to see the full image, just click on it!

Our first top on the tour is the the scroll in the center of town, welcoming you to the game.

Users of the original ZZT will note several things missing from the status bar, and that the scroll-like text window has been replaced by a simple box.

Now, lets talk a walk into the store.

This is the Armory in the Town of ZZT, where you can exchange gems for ammo and torches, and uncover a few secrets too! There are several objects missing from the board, noteably the spinners in the Guardian puzzle, and the door to the stock room, making that puzzle extremely easy until those objects are supported 🙂

Now we’re going to demonstrate one of the major improvements to DreamZZT 3 over the previous releases:

Hyperlinks are now fully functional inside text dialogs, allowing you to interact with the store owner. After selecting “Torch” from the list of items, we see the store owner’s one-line responce at the bottom of the screen:

Darn. Too bad there’s no cheat to give us gems, eh?

Spoiler alert! The following two screenshots give away the secret to one of the first puzzles you must solve in the Town of ZZT. For those of you who would prefer to solve the puzzle on their own, please stop reading now. There is no further information in this post besides a summary of the Bank of ZZT puzzle.Spoiler alert!

I am very pleased to announce the first fully-solvable puzzle in DreamZZT’s history: The Bank of ZZT. As an added bonus, DreamZZT doesn’t support “dark” rooms yet, so you don’t need to light a torch, and you can see exactly how the bank vault works.

Here we see the Bank of ZZT in all its glory — naked, and undark. This puzzle is a very interesting combination of pushers, sliders, boulders, and ZZT-OOP scripting. By pushing A, B, C, D, and E into the correct combination, you line up the boulders at the top, allowing the pushers to open up the bank vault. Pushers, Slider, and Boulders are a new addition to DreamZZT 3.0, they were previously unsupported.

After entering the correct combination and pusing the “push” boulder, we see that the pushers have moved the sliders out of the way, allowing you to enter the bank vault and steal the key and gems. Congratulations! You’ve obtained the first of the 7 purple keys!

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for more DreamZZT news, coming to a LiveJournal friends page near you!


It’s been a very long time since I’ve updated these pages, and I’ve found a solution for that. I’ll continue to post important updates, release announcements, etc. on here, but now I’ve got a LiveJournal account, and I’ll use that to post progress on projects, as well as personal posts, etc. LiveJournal allows a lot more freedom than these project pages do, and hopefully it’ll be better at keeping you all up to date. So here it is, my LiveJournal URL: Feel free to add me to your friends lists, post replies, etc. I’ve started the journal off with a short history of my programming carrer, as well as an update on the progress of DreamZZT. Enjoy!