|January 8, 2016 - I am playing video games|
Cloudflash's trend of no content continues as I have been playing a lot of video games when I'm not at work. We used to have this problem when I was playing DFO and/or H&H throughout the past few years. This time, you can blame the dryspell on me going back and playing all the good console games I missed out on throughout the years.
I've spent the last couple years collecting games for Gamecube, Wii, Wii U, DS, 3DS, PS2, and PS3. I have most of the ones I want, though there's still some ways to go. I was concerned some games might become harder to find or become more expensive as time goes on, which is why I done went and just bought them all right away. Anyway, there's still more games coming out that I want, but I have to beat the ones I already have (or am already playing through) before I can play new games! Or at least that's what I vaguely tell myself.
I somewhat recently beat Assassin's Creed 4, Trauma Center: Second Opinion, Tales of Symphonia, Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, DDR Mario Mix, Kirby Triple Deluxe, and Professor Layton: Unwound Future. Currently I'm working on Xenoblade X, Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, Zelda: Twilight Princess, and Codename STEAM. I've got plenty of lengthy games ahead of me, like Skyrim and the Kingdom Hearts series.
Maybe I'll try and focus a little more on projects after the next game I beat as a sort of intermission between games. Maybe. I currently have a YouTube video almost done. It's been sitting almost done for weeks. I should really finish it.
|March 7, 2016 - Dearest log|
I'm working on a project at the moment that involves Zelda. I expect it to be complete in less than a week. I wanted to gather up all my old Zelda drawings so I could compile them in this project. Remembering I made some C-Mix based on Zelda in the past, I looked through some comics to try and find it. About halfway through the thumbnails for my comics, I saw Cloudflash Mix #136, which is about one of many random hiatuses that occurred.
I started reading the comics from there and thought to myself, y'know, I did a pretty decent job on these things after all. The artwork was at a higher level than I remember drawing at - I feel as though I might not even be able to draw that well anymore. More importantly, the comics seemed funny to me again. It was almost as if I was an outsider just reading the comics for the first time. It's a very different feeling compared to when I create the comics - when I have the buildup and punchline in mind for 2 or 3 hours, when I publish the comic and read it 3 or 4 times everyday to see the fruits of my labour, and when I just plain don't see anything funny or redeeming about my own work after analyzing it and becoming indifferent to it.
I remember the occasional critic telling me a certain comic wasn't funny at all, telling me my art sucks, telling me my comics look like weeaboo crap. Unfortunately, those comments lingered in my head and I thought they were true. There are some pretty lame comics mixed in for sure. Even in recent months, sometimes I think about how I should've done something a bit different with certain comics. Overall, though, I'm satisfied with what I've done. I haven't made a comic in almost 2 years, and it's been about 3 years since I had any consistency in making them, but I finally feel like I might want to make some more.
Of course, I've lost my audience by now. Everyone's trying to become successful at life with no time to look at some unknown comics. If there were ever any lurkers for C-Mix, I'm sure they've long forgotten and given up on it. I dunno if it'd be worth making more comics, but maybe I'll try in the not-too-distant future.
|April 3, 2016 - Return of the comics|
As I mentioned in my last announcement, I was working on a Zelda video. It's been done for a few weeks. I already uploaded it to Facebook and lost the contest. I was planning to upload it to YouTube, but the crappy video conversion program I used really dropped the video quality. I tried several, but all to no avail. Maybe I just need a better computer. Anyway, I was also planning to modify the video a bit to remove mention of the contest so that it's more suitable for general purposes, but I don't feel like messing with that and file conversions again right now. So, I just uploaded the original SWF video here. It might not be very exciting, so don't expect too much.
Nate pestered me slightly to make some C-Mix, so I did. They're not amazing, but it's something, right? I'm usually too lazy or sleepy throughout the week, so Sunday seems like the most likely day of the week I'll make new comics. Of course, I'm not making any guarantees, but I'll possibly aim to make some every Sunday or every second Sunday for a while. Maybe.
As I browsed my files to stick a preloader on my Zelda video, I noticed my old WhACKASS WORKShIFTS video. I watched it and enjoyed the progress I had on it. I remember I asked the composer if he'd be cool with me making a music video for the song and he seemed pretty impressed with the progress I had at the time. I wonder if he was disappointed I stopped working on it or if he didn't notice? The year 2014 showing at the start of the video really puts things into perspective. I've ignored that project for a whopping 2 years already! But who knows? I might find myself working on it again at some point. It's not impossible! I did the same thing with Copy Ninja 2.
The past few days, I've been working on some writing for an old project. I think I've mentioned it before at some point. Basically, it's something I've been writing on and off for the past decade. It's supposed to be a really big and elaborate project, which I will most likely convey in comic form when it's ready. I'm just mentioning this for no reason, don't expect to see this project within the next few years.
|April 30, 2016 - Hiatus already?|
I'm too lazy to make a comic for tomorrow. Maybe too lazy to make a comic next week, too, who knows? I had a good run. I managed consistent updates for an entire month! Anyway, I'm currently more interested in working on graphics for [insert current MMO project]. So uh... I'm gonna work on graphics for [insert current MMO project].
|June 28, 2016 - Running late|
This week's comic is a bit late, sorry about that. It's been taking a lot of time for me to make a single comic, which is fairly disappointing to me. Also it drains me and makes my drawing fingers hurt. I've always tried to kinda alternate the workload on my comics to avoid burning myself out. That is, I'd do 2-panel and 3-panel comics for a few weeks in a row, possibly throwing in a 4-panel comic, then I might do a big comic (5+ panels) and go back to my ideas that take less effort. Naturally, I tried to do the same thing since I started up again, but somehow I ended up doing a lot of big comics. I guess I'm running low on simpler ideas.
It's a sorta troublesome predicament. These comics have been taking me, like, 6 hours or more to create even though they're not very complex or detailed. Part of me wants to be lazy and take a break. Possibly practice drawing a bit to work on my speed. The other part of me loves creating and publishing things for everyone to see, though. I like how my comics are easy to access and show how I've improved over the years. I also like having a large quantity of comics and feel like I've got a lot of catching up to do.
Anyway, so you might see inconsistency in the comic updates. Or you might not. I'm not very reliable when it comes to my personal projects. I wish I could find the time/motivation to redesign the site already.
|August 18, 2016 - 12 years of Cloudflash|
As of today, Cloudflash has existed for 12 years. It's been a long, quiet ride. To celebrate, I made 5 new comics. Now, you might be thinking to yourself, "But Danno! 5 comics is barely enough to even get you caught up to your past month of slacking! You've merely been holding out on us!" While I see your point, I was specifically motivated by Cloudflash's anniversary and I made all of these within the past week. In other words, I would not have bothered to make them otherwise, so be grateful (even if the comics aren't that funny)!
I keep thinking about how I want to redesign the site, but I don't see it happening anytime too soon. My creative effort seems to be booked solid - if not with the occasional comic, then my hands are tied making graphics for [insert MMO project]. Although this is certainly not in the spirit of the site's anniversary, I was thinking about how I wanted to remove a lot of the old content (Flash movies and games), though maybe I'd keep it archived somewhere, anyway.
Speaking of [insert MMO project], I'm pretty psyched up for it. Things seem like they're coming along decently. I've wanted to make an MMO for as long as Cloudflash has existed - I got my first taste of isometric MMOs in 2004 with Tactics Arena Online. Shortly after playing that, I started designing my own plans and graphics. Of course, it never panned out and I've scrapped all those old plans, but I've never given up on the idea of one day making my own isometric MMO. I was certainly ambitious back then - my sprite sheet had about 20 frames for a single walking animation! These days, I feel like a 4 frame walking animation is enough work as it is.
Here's an old picture of my first MMO project compared to the current one. The difference is like night and day.
Anyway, if nothing else, one can observe that the right sort of effort and determination will eventually make a huge difference. Maybe I should've directed my effort into something more useful in life, but I've got no regrets about what I've done. Many of my projects would reduce my sleep to 4-6 hours a night, many of them took hard work, and many times I kept going at it even though it felt tedious to me. Still, I continued because I wanted to see it finished. Despite all that, these things were fun and memorable in their own way. So, I hope people will continue to occasionally visit my pointless website to take in the sights and share a bit of this fun, or at least whatever part of it is salvageable for people other than myself. Well, until next year.
|September 30, 2016 - Reporting for duty|
I haven't made a public announcement post for a while, but I've been hard at work. Graphics and artwork for [insert MMO project] continues. Here's a sample of a walking animation and a peek at the NPC portrait artwork.
You can probably expect me to continue not making comics or anything else, really. I guess I don't really have anything else to say.
|October 25, 2016 - Redesign plans|
I started thinking again about how I really need to redesign this site. I mean, it wasn't up to par when I created the current iteration in 2007, which was bad enough, but now it's really obsolete with the prominence of mobile devices in today's world. Here's the visual plan I have for the redesign:
In the past, I hoped to integrate the forum database into the main site (i.e. logging in on the homepage, being able to save content to your profile, having something on your profile updated if you beat a Flash game, etc.). I'm thinking that's too ambitious for me and that it'll never happen, so I'll settle for what's within the realm of possibility - that is, what I can achieve on my own.
I intend to remove a lot of content and change the focus of the website. Originally, I intended for Cloudflash to be a place for me to post my own content while inviting others to submit their own content. Nowadays, I pretty much just want it to be my stuff. There are sites dedicated to sharing content and they do it much better than I could ever hope to. It's time to put that half-assed attempt to rest. I plan to remove:
-All Flash games besides ACE Character Designer. This will be moved to a "Flash" section, which will contain all future Flash content (for the people who are still willing to use Flash Player).
I intend to add:
I may also include some things that are relevant to a section. For example, the Art section might include the story of my journey as an artist - from stick figures to what I make today. I'm hoping it will appear organized and include such things seemlessly.
I'm also hoping to implement a better system for displaying content. Currently, I manually create a new text document for every comic page (i.e. I've manually edited nearly 300 pages for C-Mix). With the new system, I'll just have one page with variables to display the appropriate information for different comics.
Anyway, so that's the gist of my plan. If I'm not lazy, I might have it done by the end of the year.