Who are you? (The self-introduction thread)

  • Hi all! I think I actually know who most of you are either from Glorious Trainwrecks or Twitter or familiarity with your games or whathaveyou. But I thought it'd be nice to have a place where we can identify ourselves and what brings us here and all that. I'll start.

    I'm John D. Moore. Known as thesycophant at Glorious Trainwrecks and formerly known as Newt in the ZZT community. Born 1983.

    I started designing games on paper in the early 1990s with my cousin. These amounted to Mega Man fan games by a kid who had played very little Mega Man but had looked at a lot of Mega Man maps in Nintendo Power. We also made little interactive stories in a program (that I should really write about some time) called Story Maker Plus.

    My cousin later introduced me to QBASIC in 1996 and ZZT in 1997. I used QBASIC to program a handful of text adventures, starting with a virtual tour of my family's house. A friend and I actually completed a short one called UFO Invasion that we uploaded to AOL, but it's lost to time, like all the other weird little holiday-themed games I made and tried to make my sisters play. I also made plans for giant Zork-sized fantasy games that never came to fruition. My cousin and I later worked on our magnum opus, a text adventure called Labyrinth of Gromad, but by then I'd grown bored with the complexity of writing a text parser, and left engine-writing to my perfectionist cousin, who tinkered with it until he decided to write it as a graphical adventure in C+ in high school.

    I made ZZT games starting in 1997, starting--like as a ZZTer, you were supposed to--with some jokey adventure games, followed by some overly sincere ones. the ZZT community seemed to like my "engine games," though--platformers and Lemmings clones like The Punctuation People and the Zem! series.

    I stepped away from ZZT and game dev in the early 2000s to focus on filmmaking, though I played around a little bit with a friend's planned ZZT enhanced clone/successor Bang!.

    Beginning in 2009, I started making games with Game Maker, and I was really spurred on by the community events at Glorious Trainwrecks. I've made over 70 games since then. My most recent (and biggest game yet) is Explobers. I'm mostly interested in making small platformers that experiment with novel mechanics, and sometimes games that I think make for fun jokes.

    Here's my catalog of games, totaling over 80 and going back to my first 1997 ZZT games: whatnot.bombdotcom.net
    And here's my Twitter handle: twitter.com/jdm0079

    Pronouns: He/him/his

    Really grateful to have this space! I'm loving the podcast, and I can only imagine its listenerbase will make for a very interesting community. Looking forward to reading introductions from some of all y'all!

  • Hi folks! I'm Rabbitboots.

    As a kid, I got my filthy little hands on Klik & Play, and started working on many fractions-of-games that never progressed past a few screens. I remember raiding the internet for appropriate MIDI files.. Nowadays, I sometimes recognize a song on classic top 40 radio or in a show, and realize that the first time I had heard it was as some random MIDI file from one of these expeditions. It's left its mark for better or worse.

    Later on, I made various things under the handles qrleon and gingermuffins. I'm amused and horrified to know that many of these things are now instantly playable in a browser on archive dot org.

    I have a website for some reason (https://rabbitboots.com/) and I can be reached on twitter at @rabbit_boots.

    I'm really enjoying the podcast so far! The past couple of episodes about fangame communities and RPG Maker I found very resonant to my dumb kid days.

  • Hey intro thread.

    I'm Rylie. I make games under the name Blueberry Soft.

    I like little communities, knowledge sharing, wikis, DIY-whatever, tools, my garden, my cat.

    If you're curious about me I have lots of websites and things you can probably find from this starting point: https://www.ryliejamesthomas.net/

  • Hello,
    I'm Trevor. I'm a game designer, a programmer, and a musician.

    I've been making games for as long as I can remember. I guess I started by making jigsaw puzzles in early elementary school. I would just glue my drawings to cardboard and then use a box cutter to divide it into crude jigsaw pieces. This evolved into making board games. The two most notable ones were a game based off quidditch from Harry Potter, and a strategy game that used chess pieces. I remember the latter was called "Chepi" and it had something to do with putting a marble in the crown of a rook piece. I always played these with my cousins, who actually enjoyed them. In middle school I started playing Roblox, and this is where I learned to code. I made some fairly popular games on there and kind of became a Roblox celebrity. This evolved into making adventure games and redstone puzzles in Minecraft.

    When I was in high school, I looked up "top 10 xbox live arcade games" and discovered Braid. I know that Braid isn't a fringe game but it was the game that made me think about games more seriously. I came into contact with Jonathan Blow and he recommended a designer by the name of Stephen Lavelle to me. I sort of fell in love with Stephen's strange, hidden creations.

    Part of my reason to search for a community like this is selfish. I'm aware that most games that I make will pretty much only be played by people that are interested in fringe games. I went to college for music, but this is when I started to make games seriously. I haven't finished many, partly because I'm so slow (it took me a whole year to make a game that most people will play for 30 minutes). If you're interested in my work, you can find my (FINISHED) projects at http://trevorlovell.com/category/portfolio

    I've been meaning to find a community like this for a LONG time. When I found this website today I got super excited. After finding designers like Arcane Kids, Stephen Lavelle, Jason Rohrer, Anna Anthropy, I couldn't help but feel that there were many, many others that I've been missing out on. I love things that people have made just because they wanted to make it, without any intention of making profit or becoming famous or whatever. I feel that a lot of fringe games would fit this criteria.

    I haven't listened to the podcast yet but I plan to start today. I look forward to hanging out here.

  • Welcome @trouv!

    With a list of influences like that, I definitely must recommend that you check out Glorious Trainwrecks, the community I started ten years ago that is home to a huge variety of experimental, personal, non-profit game creation. Stephen Lavelle and Anna Anthropy used to post games there regularly; I don't think Jason Roher ever did but there sure are a lot of Passage parodies.

    This community is still pretty small and quiet and trying to figure itself out. My focus for the podcast is really on diving into older tools, games, and ways of thinking, but obviously it's important and interesting to talk about what's happening today as well, to connect that history and those ideas with what we can do now, and I think the community that's gathered here so far is at least as interested in figuring that out as digging into the past to see what's been left behind.

    But enough rambling; welcome again, and I hope you dig the podcast :)

  • @spindleyq Thanks! I took your recommendation and signed up at Glorious Trainwrecks, and submitted a game there.

  • Oh hey @trouv, I'm Blueberry (or something like that) on the ALT G's Discord. The illustrator for Braid was from some forums kinda tangential to this place :) Dunno what he's doing now, but their comic A Lesson is Learned was something I liked a lot back then.

    ... I wonder if there's a Fringe Boardgames History Podcast

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