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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here.
One of the fun things about working on HA! is all the neat ideas I come up with while coding.

Annnnd, one of the downsides of having ADD (not AD&D) is all the neat ideas I come up with while coding.
Today was a good example of both. I was working on the overland encounters code for HA! and was getting pretty deep into the factors that determine whether you...

{Edit: ADD in action, I just stepped away to grab a drink of water and then I watched about half a game of "Ticket to Ride, sold a guy some magic cards, picked out some new dice, decided on watching 300 again tonight and then remembered I wanted something to drink. 43 minutes later...}

...have an encounter with a wandering creature or NPCs....

{Edit: ok, this one is not my fault exactly. This lady and her kids came in the shop and we started talking about the "My Pet Monster" on our shelf, and then about the fact they live on Paris Mountain. Then I realized I never actually got my drink from earlier, so I had to fix that... I'm back now.}

What was I talking about? *sigh*

Right... overland wandering monsters. So I spent a while working on the various criteria that affect whether you actually have an encounter overland. One of the factors that affects this is whether or not you are invisible.

So I add the check for Hero invisibility, and then I have to go add the boolean flag to the Hero to indicate whether he/she is invisible. Then I think, well ya know monsters could be invisible too, so I move the flag out of the Hero class and into the avatar class that heros and all monsters inherit from.

So then I think about the fact that there's no way currently for a hero to actually become invisible. So I decide to add an invisibility ring to HA! so characters (heros or monsters alike) can can actually become invisible.

In order to add this ring, I inherit from the ring class and then decide I need to create an interface for effects of rings. since invisibility would (in theory) only be affected when the ring was put on or taken off, I create a iRingActivation interface that all rings implement, so I can just call a single method whenever any ring is put on and the appropriate code would fire.

After I implement this, I think to myself, hey I could use this with any item that gets equipped... like a sword or whatever.  So I rename the interface to iActivatedItem and start thinking of ways that I could add special powers.

So then i decide I'm a little hungry, so I go in the office/kitchen... and see my drink on the counter. I grab it and head back to start working on the ring of invisibility class. At some point I realize that my ADD has caused me to stop what I'm doing about a dozen or so times, so I decide to take a break from working on the class to write a blog entry about how my ADD proves to be such a distraction.

So anyway, I think I'm going to watch 300 tonight. Eventually I'll get back to the code, because I just thought about how I need to add a method for when items are unequipped, otherwise our hero won't be able to become visible again.

And while I was writing that, I just thought about how the iActivatedItem would be a good way to implement cursed items as well.

And thinking that made me think of adding a new trap (invisibility) of course, as a permanent intrinsic, which would make it harder to detect when overland (see, it goes full circle) but it could also be a penalty that would affect the Hero's ability to receive quests and interact with villagers.

{Edit: while typing this, the Immigrant Song by led Zeppelin came on the radio and it reminded me of the Viking Kittens, so I had to pull that up and watch it. if you're interested.}

But first... first... I have to finish the overland encounter code, right after I finish the iActivatedItem code, and the invisibility ring... and watch 300. 

Now where the hell did I put my food? Posted on Saturday, May 12, 2007 7:05 PM Game Development , General Interest , Heroic Adventure! | Back to top

Comments on this post: Game Development w/ ADD

# re: Game Development w/ ADD
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Ah, but is this ADD or simply an efficient multitasking mind...and perhaps even genius?

If you were working the store and coding at the same time there would be an expected distractability which would come from the inherent ability to do two tasks at one time, which many people could/would not even attempt.
The fact that in that environment you could even start coding and thinking efficiently about the appropriate inheritance of your hero and the invisibility ring is pretty cool. Many people may be able to chcek e-mail, but not code classes in such a circumstance.
And getting distracted for 43 minutes and forgetting where you were would be more natural than ADD. If it was 4 minutes, then it could be a problem.
Now if you were solely devoted to one thing, like sitting and coding at your desk at work and you get easily distracted, thinking about 300 or something else, you either have ADD or, as in my case, you simply don't like your job and it isn't very challenging. :)
Left by Scott Miller on May 13, 2007 9:03 AM

# re: Game Development w/ ADD
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Well - I started reading this blog post on Saturday evening, and got distracted more times than I can count.... I was planning on commenting then, but for some reason I ended up going running instead.

When g sent me the link this morning I was determined to really buckle down and leave a response- but I have to admit I've gotten distracted three times already - incoming email, checking a forum... I wish I remember why I did that - then a link to a music video i wanted to watch which led to another video that ended up being quite good.

I sincerely hope that Scott up there is right and that it is a sign of a genius - because if that is the case I'm in good shape!

Seriously funny post - I laughed out loud when I was reading it (on Saturday night!) And now, honest to god, I have to go find my coffee :)
Left by wifey (g's wifey that is) on May 14, 2007 11:54 AM

# re: Game Development w/ ADD
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Dude. You're just HILARIOUS. I was busting up laughing reading that, and I can definitely see you doing it and picture it in my mind now :).
Left by Jason Olson on May 15, 2007 4:11 PM

# re: Game Development w/ ADD
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I know exactly what you mean, that's me every day. Down to even the selling MTG cards and watching Joel Veitch cartoons. I actually wrote a similar styled article on talking about procrastination and technology and all of the distractions that keep you from getting work done. Even some helpful (mostly general knowledge) tips in there. Anyways, this was fun to read.
Left by Johnux on Dec 21, 2007 3:16 AM

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