Virtual Console

I finally broke down and bought some Wii Virtual Console games:

* Sonic the Hedgehog 2: I have this cart for the Genesis but it only works about 20% of the time. Now I can play without worrying about it freezing up! And I don’t have to play the whole game in one sitting, since the Wii saves the game state when you return to the home screen.

* Toejam & Earl: Panic on Funkatron: We had this for the Genesis a long time ago, it was pretty fun. Carly is still mad I sold the original cartridge years ago.

* Dragon’s Curse: This is the TurboGrafix 16 sequel to Wonderboy in Monsterworld which Jay and played on the Genesis a few years back.

* The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past: We were a SEGA house growing up, so I didn’t get to play this on the SNES. I’ve attempted to play it on emulators a few times but it’s always a hassle. Maybe I’ll actually stick with it on the Wii.

DCSquares Facebook Application

I’ve updated the DCSquares Facebook application. You can now submit score codes from the Facebook app, no need to visit the regular DCSquares site. Of course, the easiest way is to just have DCSquares submit the scores for you.

Go directly to jail

Sam: vid-yuh games
Gil: i played some today, yes
Sam: lies
Gil: no i did, i beat a game
Sam: was the killer you?
Gil: well, you have to kill to beat the game, yes
Sam: gil. you’re playing monopoly totally wrong.
Gil: heh, but i really wanted park place

Lua 5.0 in DreamZZT

ZZT-OOP is fine for simple scripts, but it’s very dated and not very powerful. Starting with DreamZZT 3.2, another scripting language will be available in addition to ZZT-OOP: Lua 5.0. Lua supports functions, variables, and file access, among other things.

Creating a Lua object using a 3rd party editor is as simple as creating a ZZT-OOP object that executes “#become lua”. DreamZZT will then run everything past that line as a Lua script instead of ZZT-OOP. Of course, if DreamZZT ever gets a text editor, or if someone adds the Lua object type to KevEdit, you’ll be able to create Lua objects directly.

Here’s a simple example of using Lua from within DreamZZT:

#become lua
function main()
set_msg("Here, the player, have some health")

And a more advanced example that handles more than one message:

#become lua
function main()
local msg = nil
local them = nil
while true do
while (msg == nil) do
them,msg = pop_message(me)
if(msg == "shot") then
set_msg("Ouch! I was shot by a " .. .. "!")
if(msg == "touch") then
set_msg("That's my purse! I don't know you!")

Note that you must call coroutine.yield() inside your loop to pass control from your script back to the game engine. The set_msg(), move() and wait_for_message() functions automatically call coroutine.yield() for you. Also note that the Lua implementation is using a message queue, so you don’t have to worry about locking and unlocking your objects like you do with ZZT-OOP.

For a more complex example, I’ve rewritten the DremZZT Tutorial in Lua, which you can view here. You can compare it to the original ZZT-OOP code to get an idea of what the new functions do. You’ll also notice that Lua has full access to the TUIWindow class, so you’ll be able to use text entry fields, check boxes, etc. from inside your games.

The Lua interpreter and updated tutorial are in the svn trunk, however saved games containing Lua objects created on PowerPC Macs are not compatible with other platforms and vice versa, due to how that CPU stores data. This issue will be resolved eventually, but right now just don’t transfer saves between PowerPC Macs and the rest of the world 🙂 For information on checking out and building DreamZZT from svn, see Building DreamZZT from Source.

DreamZZT 3.0.8

DreamZZT 3.0.8 is released!


New Features

  • Sound support for Dreamcast
  • Support STK-colored torches, ammo, energizers
  • Uses system clock for improved game timing
  • Game speed and volume can be adjusted from title screen
  • Integration with the Trac ticket system for in-game bug reports
  • Optimized rendering to improve performance
  • Mission:Enigma is now completable
  • Auto-update support for Windows

Bug Fixes

  • Centipede segments harm player (#23)
  • Centipedes could become disconnected if shot by an enemy (#27)
  • Board transitions may not work properly after saving (#39)
  • Change object search order to match ZZT (#13)
  • Support stat-less objects (#29)
  • Handle backspace key in debug console
  • ZZT-OOP objects could still receive messages when locked (#48)

MythTV Upcoming Recordings 1.0

Introducing the MythTV Upcoming Recordings widget:

This widget will connect to your MythTV backend server and display the list of upcoming scheduled recordings. It requires a MythTV backend server configured to accept network connections.

You csn download it from the MythTV Upcoming Recordings page.

MythTV Dashboard Widget

I’ve started working on a dashboard widget to display the upcoming recordings on a MythTV backend server:

I’ll post it for download once I finish styling it. As a side note, creating widgets with DashCode is amazingly easy. Writing the Cocoa plugin to connect to the MythTV server, on the other hand, was a pain.

DreamZZT 3.0.8 beta1

Whew! I wanted to get this out this weekend, and I made it with 15 minutes to spare!

Introducing DreamZZT 3.0.8 beta1.


  • Built-in bug reporting
  • Improved game timing and faster rendering
  • Many bugs fixed, Mission:Enigma is now completable

For the full release notes, check out

Mac OS X (10.4)
Linux (Ubuntu Feisty Fawn)

A Dreamcast build will be available soon.

Feel free to test Town and Mission:Enigma, but the focus of this beta test should be 3rd party games. Also, since this is a beta release, it connects to the beta DreamZZT Online server. You’re welcome to create accounts on it from inside the game, but there aren’t any tasks on there yet.

Speaking of DreamZZT Online, the source is finally ready to be released. It’s in the DreamZZT svn repo, and can be viewed from