Planet Iron Blogger SF

November 19, 2018

Doctor Popular

Looking back at the Obra Dinn [spoiler free]

In Lucas Pope’s newest game, “Return of the Obra Dinn“, you play an insurance adjuster who travels to an abandoned ship to learn what happened to it’s crew. It’s an insurance themed murder-mystery game at sea.

Christine and I just finished the game and loved the experience. The story is fantastic, but what really hooked us was the highly stylized graphics. Lucas wanted to recreate an old school look similar to what you’d find in older Sierra Online games. To recreate this look, Lucas takes a 3D environment, adds wireframe lines (to give 3D objects a 2D look), converts it to grayscale, then uses a dynamic noise effect to break the shading into a dithering effect.

I remember a year back when he was sharing some of his early experiments and some of the challenges that dithering created when used in a 3D environment:

A more detailed explanation of Lucas’s dithering technique can be found on this tigsource thread.

The Return of the Obra Dinn can be bought on Steam here.

The post Looking back at the Obra Dinn [spoiler free] appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at November 19, 2018 07:24 PM

Certainly Strange

Still hiding from smoke

As the wildfires continue to burn, I’ve been feeling more and more antsy from being cooped up all the time in my attempts to avoid the smoke. At least we’ve been able to play and beat Return of the Obra … Continue reading

by Steen at November 19, 2018 07:30 AM


November 18, 2018

I Like Turtles

Annual photoshoot


November 18, 2018 05:00 AM

November 17, 2018

a digital life

November 16, 2018


a digital life

November 14, 2018


New-found freedom, or survivor's guilt?

I find it interesting that after being a 9-5 (or more like… 10-6 or later) office worker for the past decade, I’ve been trained to need to feel productive each weekday. And while I’ve certainly been personally productive this past week and a half, there’s still a sense of rebellion that I find surprising in this newfound daytime freedom. Just yesterday in the late morning, I went to Farley’s to pick up some funky magazines, where I sat and read them in the window seat for a few hours, nursing a golden latte. Something about this activity felt so luxurious and almost naughty, like I was getting away with a defiant indulgence. Who do I think I’m defying?! Only myself and the expectations that have been trained into me over the years. I’m interested to examine how my feelings change as I adjust to this new life I have chosen for myself.

by Jenna at November 14, 2018 08:05 PM

November 13, 2018


November 12, 2018

Doctor Popular

DIY “I Voted By Mail” Stickers

I was disappointed that the San Francisco vote-by-mail ballots didn’t include one of those “I Voted” stickers. So I decided to make my own using some paper and tape (for a laminated effect). I really dig the result. As a matter of fact, I’d love to figure out how to get SF to include something like this “I Voted By Mail” sticker included in the 2020 election.

DIY I voted by mail

DIY I voted by mail

The post DIY “I Voted By Mail” Stickers appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at November 12, 2018 08:10 AM

Certainly Strange

California is Vvardenfell

I’ve been breathing so much smoke, I’ll be taking like those guys in Morrowind soon. California is basically Vvardenfell now.

by Steen at November 12, 2018 08:04 AM

November 11, 2018

a digital life

November 10, 2018

I Like Turtles

Tel Aviv and Athens


November 10, 2018 05:00 AM

a digital life

November 08, 2018


Going Indie

I’m excited to announce that I have left my job at Hustle and am starting out on my own as an independent designer. I feel completely ready for this next step—years of agency experience has perfectly primed me to manage varied clients and projects, and I am intrigued by the lifestyle that freelance work can offer me. I plan to take it slow through the holidays so that I can enjoy a period of vocational freedom that I have never had in my adult life before ramping up into filling my time with work.

While I am very excited, striking out on one’s own comes with a certain amount of uncertainty and trepidation: questions are floating through my head such as: Will I get enough work in the door? Will I get to work on things I really enjoy or just have to take what comes my way? Will organizations value my time and contributions as an individual rather than part of a larger company? Will I be a good boss to myself? Will I handle my admin correctly? Will I get lonely working from home? Will I feel like I’m truly my own boss or will my projects start to rule me instead? I’m mitigating these quiet anxieties by intentionally giving myself some time and space to get my shit together—and it’s encouraging that without really any outbound marketing and very little networking I already have some inbound interest, which I’m certainly interested in exploring despite wanting to take time to relax and start slow.

by Jenna at November 08, 2018 12:12 AM

November 07, 2018

a digital life

November 05, 2018

Certainly Strange

Steen’s Mask

Since I’d been working on my Dagoth Ur mask for several months, Doc comissioned a piece by Adam Koford of my Morrowind character making her own Dagoth Ur mask 🙂 Also, today was my birthday again!

by Steen at November 05, 2018 07:06 AM

Doctor Popular

Part 1.5 of the 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project documentary

We are still working on part two of the 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project documentary, but here is an excellent clip of Shawn (from One Drop) and myself talking about how yo-yo design and the current state of the Weekender project.

Speaking of the Weekender, I’ve shared a couple short yo-yo clips where I’m using a prototype. You can kind of get an idea of the sort of “modern responsive” play we are aiming for.

The post Part 1.5 of the 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project documentary appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at November 05, 2018 02:52 AM

November 04, 2018

a digital life

November 03, 2018

I Like Turtles

Halloween with Leonard


November 03, 2018 04:00 AM

November 02, 2018

a digital life

October 30, 2018

a digital life

October 29, 2018

Certainly Strange


You may recall that I was going to post about the mask-making process this week, but it turns out this weekend was Halloween for Adults and everybody scheduled all their 100s of events within the same 48 hours, so I … Continue reading

by Steen at October 29, 2018 07:29 AM

Doctor Popular

The 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project: Part 1 (of 2)

Last month I hopped on a train from San Francisco to Eugene, OR in order to spend a weekend with the One Drop crew. The goal was to design a brand new (and somewhat atypical) yo-yo. We ended up calling this the 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project and plan on making it an annual thing.

Thanks to the support of my backers on Patreon, I was able to hire my buddy Clifton B. to document this project along the way. I’m happy to share part one of The 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project:

IF you enjoy these videos, you can help support me on Patreon. This month I’ll be giving away one of the 48 Hr Yo-Yo prototypes to one of my Patreon backers, so don’t delay.

The post The 48 Hour Yo-Yo Project: Part 1 (of 2) appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at October 29, 2018 05:42 AM

October 28, 2018

I Like Turtles

20 years of sin


October 28, 2018 04:00 AM

October 27, 2018

a digital life

October 22, 2018

Certainly Strange

I’m a god! How can you kill a god?

Welp, I’ve finished up with my Halloween costume for this year! I’m being Dagoth Ur from Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind. I’ve only just finished, so the only photos I have thus far are in a garage. Although I’m not really … Continue reading

by Steen at October 22, 2018 05:00 AM

Doctor Popular

When Climbers Hookup.

Spotted this flier in Mission Cliffs last year and forgot about it, but I was cleaning out my photo album recently and thought it was worth sharing. People love it on R/climbing too.

Climbers like to hookup

Speaking of Mission Cliffs, I just saw this too.

The post When Climbers Hookup. appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at October 22, 2018 04:25 AM

October 21, 2018

I Like Turtles

Kick Axe


October 21, 2018 04:00 AM

October 20, 2018

a digital life

October 19, 2018

a digital life

October 15, 2018


Introducing... the Van Houts!

Last night, Thomas and I brought friends and family together from all over the country to compete in the first-ever-and-only Steely or Koff naming games. The purpose was simple: to decide which last name we would assume as a married couple. The games were filled with riveting excitement, intense drama and nail biting suspense. It was a day where scissors prevailed, partners were pampered, knots were tangled, and bouquets made heroes of men and women alike.

It all came down to the final event—and we were just as surprised as everyone when we ended with a 30-30 point tie. Under this rare win condition, we had previously agreed to take neither Steely nor Koff, but instead turn to Thomas’s mother’s maiden name: Van Hout. (Why? because it sounds badass!)

The reason that this competition worked is that we were both willing to freely give our names to each other from a place of love and equality ...with a healthy dose of the fun and mischief that is characteristic to our relationship.

We are grateful to our amazing community of friends and family for your love, support, and help in making this decision. We look forward to our future together as the Van Houts!


by Jenna at October 15, 2018 10:49 PM

Certainly Strange

New Haircut

Welp, I got a new haircut this weekend, AND I’ve finished my Halloween costume. However, I want to wait to get some nicer photos of it before sharing, so I won’t spoil it. You’ll have to wait until next week … Continue reading

by Steen at October 15, 2018 05:45 AM

Doctor Popular

Several new mini-episodes of PopCast

I reached a new goal on my Patreon project, which helps me create my monthly PopCast yo-yo videos, so I decided to say thanks by sharing a few mini-episodes featuring some well known players.

And, in case you missed it, here’s this month’s PopCast video, which features a TON of responsive yo-yo tricks performed in a new way.

The post Several new mini-episodes of PopCast appeared first on Doc Pop's Blog.

by doc at October 15, 2018 01:03 AM

October 14, 2018

I Like Turtles



October 14, 2018 04:00 AM

October 13, 2018

a digital life

October 12, 2018

a digital life

October 10, 2018

a digital life

October 08, 2018

Certainly Strange

24 Hour Comic Book Day 2018

Welp, another 24 Hour Comic Book Day has come and gone! Unfortunately, I foolishly decided to do my comic about dancing disease. This means several panels full of crowds of dancing people. Yeesh, big mistake :-/ Progress pic with coffee … Continue reading

by Steen at October 08, 2018 04:20 AM

October 07, 2018

I Like Turtles



October 07, 2018 04:00 AM