The Solstice is nearly upon us…

The Solstice is nearly upon us and Doomdark is already waking from his slumber. We must reach the Tower of the Moon by tomorrow, yet our ride promises to be long and hazardous.

The last few days have seen many issues knocked off the list for Lords of Midnight, two of them were show stoppers! Right now my actual TODO: list has 3 items on it. That said, every night, before I start working, I run through the game and add all the issues that crop up to my list; it seldom stays short for long… That said, I almost have a product that I am prepared to ship, even if not 100% happy with it. But then, when are we ever 100% happy with something.

Tonight I will be finishing off the tutorial system in the game. It’s not ideal and it’s a little wordy, and to be honest at this moment in time it is so in your face that I’m tempted to remove it. But knocking off the rough edges tonight should do the trick. After that I need to finish the manual, which will be online. And that should be it.

I will make another few passes through the game trying to snag issues that annoy me more than anything else. I suspect most of those issues to be cosmetic ones that drop out of resolution changes, or physical ones raised because of small hit zones on phones. I am the least happy with 480×320, the iPhone 3gs resolution. But hopefully I can get it more acceptable over the next few days.

It’s been a long six weeks since I made the decision to continue with the project in its current form. I’m not sure how much sleep I’ve had. They have been longs days that have often finished at 2am, with the following day still starting early. Then straight from office after an hour drive and into the study to start the process again. But all that said, I am really happy with how it has come together, it looks great. Sure there are loads of things that I would change. But every-time that I write a change on a list, I have asked myself, “how much does this really matter to the person playing this version of the game? And that has been the thing I have had to keep sight of, it’s this version of the game, and this version of the game needs to ship. There are a number of things I can tweak, but I can tweak them later.

So, currently, I plan to submit the iOS version to Apple on Friday, with a scheduled release date of The Winter Solstice, That gives me nearly three weeks for it to bounce in and out of the Apple submission process if necessary.

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Summer Solstice 2008

Despite the rain... Visited Stonehenge for the Summer Solstice again this year; it was very wet. The whole family went for the experience but despite our misgivings with the weather before we set off, the kids were looking forward to it; so we went anyway.

It was very gloomy and very wet. At 8:30pm the stones were quiet so I was hopeful that a projected weekend contingent wasn’t going to turn up. At 4:30am it was apparent that they had. The Stones seemed busier than any other time, and they were definitely messier – the litter was appalling. I do wish some people would have a little more respect for others.

The rain fell for most of the night in some shape or form – came down very heavy just before sunrise. The sun was never visible through the clouds!

The kids spent most of the night asleep in the back of the Scenic; it was just a form of camping to them.

Biggest problem was the two hours it took us to get out of the car park. Normally only takes about 15 minutes. We spent a good hour thirty not actually moving!

It seems the car park was full; I have never seen the cars parked all the way to the back that’s for sure. And I think this created a problem when people started to leave – just nowhere to go. That combined with the little hill heading to the exit being a tad wet and the cars were started to wheel spin on it… I wonder how some of the later cars and vans would have got on…

Despite the rain... Umbrella... Umbrella... Umbrella... Umbrella...

Happy to be here... A Job to do... Just you and me...

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Messages from the stones…

I was at Stonehenge for the summer Solstice… anyway recently someone commented about one of my pictures on one of the photograph sites that I post to.

Here is the picture. You can click on it to get a bigger image.

Sunset at Stonehenge

And here is the comment.

Great image spoiled by the NO in the cloud formation obviously not a heavenly body!!!! apart from that nicely handled image…Bev.

I had to email Bev to find out what was meant… and only after much staring did I see that message sent to me during sunset before the summer solstice at stonehenge… boldy in the top middle of the picture, nestled among the clouds… “NO”… was someone trying to tell me something?

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Summer Solstice 2007

Sunset at Stonehenge I went to the Solstice celebrations at last night. I was up there for 9pm ready to see the sunset. I’ve not see the sunset at the stones before and to be honest they are not in the right position for it! 🙂
There was a small amount of cloud which cleared relatively quickly and the rest of the night was pretty clear and dry. It only rained for about 10 seconds at around 9:30pm.
The stones were busy, mainly I think because Glastonbury is upon us and many people will be en-route. I have to say that security seemed a bit edgy. I’m not sure if they were expecting trouble or that they were concerned about the numbers but there did seem to be something in the air. There seemed to be a lot more nobs than usual and there was an awful lot more rubbish left lying around. All in all I didn’t think it was the best solstice celebrations.
The sky was clear right through to 4am and the the dark storm clouds rolled in. By 4:30 the sky was pretty covered and the chance of seeing a decent sunrise looked very very remote. Also, the chance of getting soaked look very very high. So we cut our loses and head for home.

Sunset at Stonehenge Sunset at Stonehenge Sunset at Stonehenge Sunset at Stonehenge
Watching on... Solstice Kiss Security Stoking the fire

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The Longest Night – Winter Solstice

I went to the at this morning. It isn’t as widely visited as the Summer Solstice, I guess the cold puts most people off, so the reduced numbers make for a more personal moment. There is very little organisation compared to the Summer Solstice, no car parking facilities, no food, etc, but then you only get about a thousand people at the most compared to the twenty five thousand in the summer.

The fog was thick, as it has been for the past few days, so I didn’t actually see the sun until about 9:30am from the motorway on my way to work, but the atmosphere was fantastic and the fog added to the feeling of eerieness that one gets from the stones.

Stonehenge - Winter Solstice 2006 Stonehenge - Winter Solstice 2006 Stonehenge - Winter Solstice 2006 

Unlike the summer solstice, the winter solstice has a more defined ceremony for the people who welcome the sun back. I found myself caught between two thoughts for the people who take it seriously; One. You are grown men, get a grip of yourself… and Two. We should all let these people get on with it without our intrusion.

There is a large intrusion of photographers and camera men trying to get the close shot of anyone who remotely look like they take the process seriously. I found myself thinking that they should just be left alone with a small exclusion zone around them. Imagine all these cameras at the front of a church during communion or something.

I also found that you get people dressed up a tad silly to be taken seriously, and that these people detract from what everyone else is doing. A bloke dressed as Merlin springs to mind. Dressed in new modern costime shop atire, complete with jeans and white trainers! Unfortunatley, it is people like him that get the attention of the press, and therefore show a rather silly side of the whole process.

See Also: Summer Solstice 2006 | Summer Solstice 2005 | The Longest Day | Fergus’ Solstice Fotothing

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Wikipedia Winter Solstice Celebrations, Stonehenge

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