I managed to win a Pac Man / Ms. Pac Man game board for less than $40 including shipping over at eBay a week or so back. Looked legit and in good shape. So the question is: was it a bargain or have I ended up with a pile of trash?
Since I was passing Chicago earlier this week I had the board together with some other games delivered there for saving on the shipping. So on Wednesday I finally got the chance to examine my possible bargain and except for the desperate need of cleaning and perhaps a cap change it looks fine. It’s missing the cable for connecting the Ms. Pac Man daughter board but that one’s quite easy to find so I’m optimistic. But I won’t know for sure until I get back home again in a couple of weeks. Oh, and I’ll need a JAMMA adapter too since the board comes with the old Midway interface.
The other two packages waiting for me was Gundam DX vs. Zeon GD-ROM for the Naomi and Soul Calibur II Ver. A and D for System 246.
Have you shown your local programmer some love lately? If not, then today’s a good day for repentance for today is Programmer’s Day.
You didn’t think Microsoft launching Visual Studio 2012 today’s a coincidence, now did you?
The 100’th (hexadecimal for 256’th) day of the year is declared Programmers’ Day, a professional holiday in Russia and observed in a number of countries. It’s time for the rest of the world to join in and give some appreciation to all the coders out there that make everything from watches to the Curiosity on Mars tick. And yes, of course, your arcade games as well 😉
Piling game boards wrapped in bubble plastic is not such a good idea so I had to come up with some solution to the storing problem now that the collection contains more than two boards. Not to mention the visual rape. Even though a bit of chaos feeds the creativity I prefer my bookshelves and cabinets tidy. So, off to Office Depot for hunting card board boxes and foam. Not finding exactly what I was looking for I settled for approx. 32x27x6 cm (13×10½x2½ inches) boxes. Large enough to hold most boards. In retrospect I should have gotten a one or two 1½ inch deep boxes as well. After some glue exercises (the boxes weren’t self locking) I had two nice looking boxes for storing game boards. Add anti-static Zip-Lock bags and labels and the boards are safe and looking good on the shelf.
Lastly, labels for giving the boxes a little more pro look (hand writing on the boxes is a no-no!). Internet and your favorite image editing program to the rescue.
My Guilty Gear X finally arrived on Wednesday after a detour south of the city due to the post not being capable of seeing the difference between Segeltorp and Järfälla. Also nicely treated – as always. Anyway, the cartridge was nicely secured inside along with the artwork (that I even had forgotten about).
The Guilty Gear X cartridge and artwork. Both with normal wear and tear. Will have to wait some time until I’ll be able to fire it up for a test run though since my Naomi setup is still missing some parts.
Capcom I/O Adapter
Yesterday I finally picked up a Capcom I/O Adapter. One huge step closer to finishing the Naomi setup since this an adapter or converter is required for hooking up the Naomi to a JAMMA cabinet. Now I’m only missing some power cables. The case has some minor oxidation but nothing that some sandpaper and Autosol cannot fix.
Traditionally the uniqueness of 2D art and comics has been difficult – if not impossible – to render properly in 3D. The Japanese company Cybernoids wants to change all that with Live2D.
Why 2D and comics don’t work in 3D
The typical style of comics and traditional hand drawn 2D animations are generally very hard to accomplish in the 3D animation packages of today. Especially within Japanese anime but also in western style animations such as Mickey Mouse’s ears (no matter which way Mickey looks the ears are flat towards the viewer). The “suneo” hairstyle common in anime is another example that would be near impossible to recreate correctly in a normal 3D animation.
The technique is still evolving and currently lends itself mainly to dialog type of games where movement is limited. But the goal for Cybernoids of course is to get to a point where characters can be rendered fully in a 3D space for more advanced games and animated movies.
Video of Shizuku from Shizuku Talk, one of many dialog style apps created with Live2D available for the iPhone and Android phones.
Live2D consists of tools for both content creation and animation; Live2D Modeler and Live2D Animator.
With Live2D Modeler you create data models that you later bring to life in Live2D Animator. Modeler allows you to work with 2D illustrations as you would in for example Adobe Illustrator. The goal is not to create 3D models and render them in a way to mimic traditional 2D cel style animations as you would in a 3D tool like Autodesk’s Maya or Maxon’s Cinema4D but in fact to draw in 2D and be able to animate your characters in as easily as you would in real 3D animation tool.
What differs Live2D Modeler from a normal drawing tool is the addition of parameters that define how objects and vectors belong together and deform. Much like a rig when modelling in 3D. The parameters can control how lines and objects deform, bend, grow or shrink when moved or comes to life. You can control things like eye and lip movement and other facial expressions.
Live2D Animator is where you bring your models to life with tools that resemble their a likes in 3D animation packages. Working on the timeline with the models created in Live2D Modeler it’s easy to accomplish authentic 2D animations that would take much longer if done by hand in a traditional frame-by-frame manner. And since Live2D uses vectorized graphics there’s no degradation when exporting your work.
Live2D – Info about Live2D. You can register and download free versions of both Live2D Modeler and Animator here.
Cybernoids Co. – Cybernoids company site. Some info available in English.
Apps and games – List of currently available games and smart phone apps (mainly iPhone and Android).