From Memory

Once again the numpty Peter strikes back,

Not writing in this week’s doings has left me with only memory to suffice.

Let us begin!

To kick Monday off it was CASPR week which involves the Year 2’s collecting Motion Capture Data to fit into their created environment for the CASPR unit. This was great for me as it meant Monday and Wednesday were serious Motion Capture sessions. Just on Monday I performed footage for a Samurai character, a Jedi, multiple “badass” type individuals, a Boxer and all sorts of other whacky characters including Tarzan and a Lobster villian. Motion Capture, it seems, has become a new addiction of mine and I cannot wait to get back into the suit.

As usual Define Games was the lecture of the day but today we also had a meeting with our Tutor which I looked forward to since it had been a while since the last time. Sadly I don’t think I made the morning eportfolio lecture but the later Tutor meeting finalised the current plan for the next three years at University, which is great.

The rest of the evening was a positive relax period of which I sincerely cannot remember so…

Tuesday involves another 3D modelling lecture, this one about particle systems in 3D modelling programs and how they can be used and how they are made. It was a shorter and far more focused lecture which was enjoyed by pretty much everyone. After this was a planned day with my YouTube friend. We managed to marathon a game quickly and then play the new Resident Evil game (number 7) which turned out to be, for the first half, one of the best games we’d ever played.

Wednesday was even more brilliant but incomprehensibly packed. Getting up at 7 to be in the Motion Capture studio for 9am then working in there from 9-4:30. Admittedly the amount of time spent in there was never enough, I still had the energy for more. The whole thing was incredibly exciting. We motion capped Captain America, a Bipedal Lion character, an Archaeologist, a Stone Golem, a Shaolin Monk, an Angel and more. After this it was time to nip back to meet a friend quickly before running back for Choir for two hours. After choir dinner was to be cooked and eaten for fifteen minutes before off to boxing for another two hours. After that I was booked to meet the friend again with whom we attempted to finish Resident Evil. Sadly we both didn’t finish it and found the second half incredibly disappointing in comparison due to vast pacing issues and the story getting ridiculously convoluted. A late night also meant that the impending drowsiness of Thursday morning.

That drowsiness strangely never came, nor did it the next day or the next and for some reason the continued energy increase of the last two weeks maintains itself, even now. Today’s lesson was Image Creation so photoshop it was. These lectures are actually really fun for both the general chat and the actual workshop itself. Unfortunately however some people managed to convince me that I really wanted to buy Titanfall 2, which sounds both exciting and extremely expensive. Luckily for me I still have yet to purchase it. After this it was time to put down the house deposit but they didn’t have their card machine working, thankfully with the account number and the like a bank transfer could be done later that evening. Being the last one to sort it the house is officially ours. The later lecture for the Image Creation unit was about finding inspiration from anything when creating our trailer/short movie. It was entertaining but not something I personally needed though it seems other people found it helpful. A trip to the pub and then a group laboratory session ensued where a surprising amount of work actually got done. After this it was back to Resident Evil 7 and this time to complete it. So we did and then talked ourselves silly before going to bed.

Friday unfortunately contained a slight relapse due to sleep schedules but nothing too severe. My usual bacon, eggs and toast made up for it. Though because I didn’t quite make it to the lecture it involved a visit from a great friend and then a trundle up to Denmead to have a chinese with an old friend with whom I also watched “We’re the Millers” which proved to be a surprisingly good comedy for someone who isn’t that into comedies.

Saturday and Sunday were a return to Home and was a very pleasant weekend leading me onto next week’s blog!

Uni Highs and Uni Lows

Strangely Monday has slipped from Memory and it was my stupid fault for not writing it down. So besides from a Define Games lecture on 2D shooter and a couple of newfound game ideas sprung up because of this nothing has been noted!

Tuesday however I felt great, continuing a strange high that was felt over last weekend. This day was productive in terms of YouTube as I went to a friend of mine, under the username JokerAlex21 (google him if you wish) and recorded some videos for fun. These will be up on my channel and his as soon as possible, though for mine they’ll be released slower. Other than that it was my German lecture which was quite good fun as we simulated food shopping. Luckily Duolingo had me covered in most of the food vocabulary department. On the way back home I picked up my new Cornerstone Shaving Kit. So far it’s been great and worth the subscription. Perhaps a little on the expensive side yet mine costs me £30 every 18 weeks for new razors, cream and all the assorted goods necessary for a clean and easy shave. That night was intended to be a movie night going to see La La Land, that movie with rave reviews, but instead it turned into a Dominoes Pizza Night with 6 friends. This was worth it as the friend whom I was going to see La La Land with has agreed, in exchange, to buy the ticket when we do go and see it.

Unfortunately Wednesday proved a little different, at least later. Waking up at 6:20am I actually felt rather wonderful and after the usual morning routine I found it to be 7:30. Feeling rather meditative I put on my walking boots and walked from Portsmouth and Southsea train station down to the Kings Theatre, crossed along to Langstone and then turned towards a pond by the seaside then strolled back. Incredibly this only took me an hour and a half and I made it in time for a Computer Games Enterprise lecture which I decided to go to. Those lectures are actually startlingly brilliant as we learnt about the HR department in industries and how difficult dealing with people can be despite some companies deciding to avoid having an HR. Then a coding lecture (Pointers) which was surprisingly simple even though there was all this hype over how difficult this individual part is… Walking back proved pleasant as there was a good conversation with a fellow student… Yet it was upon sitting down to do some coding work on my own PC that a shroud of grump laid to rest around. Suddenly my mood went from a serious high to a rather shocking low. This continued for the rest of the day disallowing me to feel comfortable in Choir and stopping me from going Boxing. Thankfully a friend came to the rescue and helped make dinner which was topped off by a flatmates incredible recipe for Hot Chocolate.

Strangely enough though this bad mood wiggled its way into the Thursday morning as well. I wake up as a lecture begins and struggle my way through the morning. Feeling incredibly demotivated I toddle off to a Student Representative meeting. This did turn out to be quite amusing, and perhaps productive as I picked up a Student Representative Jumper so it was obviously official. Sadly though it meant I missed the next lecture which would prove interesting as it spoke of Photoshop and Image positions and angles to improve an image, something which does fascinate me. Luckily upon returning home and sitting down for a piece of toast and a sneaky cup of tea I made a breakthrough in the 3D modelling department and found the measurements for Portchester Castle. With this newfound knowledge I head to the labs to meet my Games Tech Demo group but instead I was invited to a friendly gathering discussing the opportunity to study abroad. This did still lead onto the group meeting which proved fairly productive in my attempt to make stand-out helmet models for our in-game characters. Despite our game idea being technically serious we understand that without expertise it will look buggy and perhaps a little foolish which is why we’ve adopted a slightly more comic approach to character design. The day then ended with a highly amusing evening spent with a good friend.

Friday continued on this high as we attended the Games Tech Demo lecture. Our poor teacher has been late to every single one and on the lesson he was to read out the “stop, start, continue” cards suggesting hints and tips from students to lectures on what to do he became late due to leaving them at home only to find them having gone in the bin. The irony was that all the critiques were “don’t be late”. So rather embarrassed he came to lecture late to say that he had nothing to say. Luckily for me however we had a good chat about a potential extra lecture at the end of the year summarising what he feels we should have learnt from our time working in groups as some people may not get the full experience. This is also because he has said that the point of the unit is entirely self-learning and it would defeat the object to give direct help during. This has got most students a little put-out as they wonder where and why their money is going so I just suggested that idea as a way of, after we’ve been graded, giving a little bit more money’s worth. After this came a 3D modelling lecture which proved highly entertaining as I laid out my portchester Caslte plans and spoke to our lecturer about the castle and its similarities with Pevensey Castle due to the Roman Gatehouse. The rest of the day consisted of another meeting with my good YouTube friend and then some recordings done for him.

So an interesting up and down week, let’s hope the up remains and the downs only stay short, if they come at all. Let’s also hope I finally make two sessions of boxing in one week…

Another Year, Another Beer

“But Peter! You don’t drink?”

They say aghast at the title. Aye, sadly I didn’t and luckily I still don’t really plan to. Yet the corruption begins with the family!

It was a heartwarming New Years Eve, we ordered my new computer and trundled back to my place when it was my Brother’s idea to go out clubbing. It was here that I managed to have a little bit too much to drink for the first time. Thankfully it wasn’t a horrendous amount and I was still at least sane with quite a bit left before it would end up that way… As I found out the Wednesday after.

Having never been clubbing or drinking it would turn out that I’d be sent on a rather surprising rollercoaster of a two week period. First it was my brother inviting me, then an old friend whom I had not seen in a while, then my brother again, before he disappears off for months, and then finally my flatmates force me out.

We can only pray that the next few months I will be less troublesome!

On that note, happy new year all ye readers. You may all have had a bad last year but at least mine was good, not quite sure how this one can top it but it may just seeing as my brother has also now invited me to Uganda and organised a trip to Malta with my Gran in Easter. Then there’s the house moving into, the switch to Computer Games Enterprise and all the rest…

In all honesty however, after an amazing trip to Belgium, I missed my flat dearly so within two days of being at home it was time to head back and stay alone in the Portsmouth flat for a week, recovering from New Years.

The Monday of the beginning of University eventually crept up on us and prepared all of us for our first portfolio hand-in for Art and a coding exam. Yay.

Speaking of which, I am still very behind on Coding and unfortunately I was on a roll until my computer required upgrading leaving me without resources for another 6 days, making the road to the exam rather tense and difficult, but that’s off point.

The first lecture was, as usual, define games. This was really good actually as we discussed what pathway we’d be taking next year between Graphics, Programming and Design, or two of those. Mine definitely being Graphics and Design. We then did a highly amusing activity as we had to design a dance game due to the dying market. Our team agreed on a “Typing of the Dead”-style dance modification to modern shooter games which seemed to surprise our lecturer as it occurred to him that it hadn’t been done.

Tuesday kicked off with a late bed and an early wake which didn’t lend itself too well. This day was… interesting. I woke up, did the usual routine and then went to be my coat hook to find my new expensive, lovely and comfortable coat had.. gone. The 3D modelling lecture was also interesting but could have been learnt off the powerpoint. They were speaking of how Procedural Generation works using Fractals. Thinking it was a teaching fair I went to pick up my NUS card and go to this fair… Only to find the shop was closed just for today and the fair was another day. Thankfully I’m someone who, after two consecutively frustrating things, begins to find the whole process highly amusing and so the rest of the day came in rather good humour. On a better note I replayed Guitar Hero to find I wasn’t too bad after three years of not playing. Also I learnt that Harry potter and the Chamber of Secrets is an amazing game on PC and needs to be played! The evening involved finishing Art for the hand-in on Wednesday. Sadly the final piece did not turn out as entirely planned, with no time to change it, but still looked rather good so with pride it was handed in on…

Wednesday had the coding exam. This started with finding out my uni account had strangely been deactivated so with much faff we got it back up but during that I had to do my exam on moodle using an admin account. Still searching to find my coat I wander the building handing in my art portfolio on the way. Tonight though was the next night out with my Brother which was great as we discussed our usual pro-anarchist views and he met a lot of the Pompey people whom he enjoyed the company of.

Thursday however began with exhaustion but no side-effects aside from a bad sleep. Even so I made it to the new Photoshop focused Image Creation session which was great fun as we learnt the fundamentals. Dad then met us and took us to the excellent ice cream store “Sprinkles”, well known in the city. The later lecture involved discussing the next assessment which was actually to create a movie trailer or a showreel. This allows me to kill two birds with one stone as I can create that showreel for acting that I’ve been needing, having been turned down for a few things due to a lack of one.

Friday I was even more exhausted than the night before for some reason and so had to stay in bed before trundling home to take a great friend out for her Birthday. This turned into a lovely day as after involved returning home for a pleasant couple of hours, which was rejoiced mostly by the dogs.

So there we are, the start of a new year on strange but fun footing. Let’s see where this road now takes us all!