Getting life back on track …

I need to turn the steering left … until it gets back on the road … let the steering go and let it auto rotate to center itself … and then just push gently on the accelerator … and let it cruise …

Only, I am not driving a car … its my life … and there is no power steering …

The past couple of weeks were just hectic … as I had said before … single minded, rodent like obsession … about the … game !

And it did pay dividends in the end … If I may be allowed, a little chest thumping is in order … “First in State

Now, that does really sound good …

Anyways, the entire journey wasn’t very smooth going and us winning was very unexpected …

Here is the rundown …

We made this “Foosball” game for this “game development contest” held annually at the Sinhagad College of Engg. which is renowned for two things : One of the most picturesque campuses you will ever see … and the ultimate, back wrenching, pot holed filled 20 km ride to get to the college …

We were informed about the contest one week late by these Sinhagad College guys, and so, just had one week to come up with a working model of the game …

After a lot of deliberation and killing a few of my fellow classmates, we decided to make the “Foosball” game of the “Friends” fame …

So, after a week, we finished … and submitted 70% of compiled code to these people for the elims … only to have learnt we have been disqualified … as more than 2 teams ( 3 according to them ) had participated from our college …

This was very strange … and I was to later realise that they had conveniently confused us with a Modern College … whereas our college was Modern Education Society’s College of Engg.

So, after killing a few more people at Sinhagad … and explaining to the others … that we were in no way related to the ‘other’ Modern College, we managed to get our entry cleared …

We qualified for round 1 …

During this period … we coded a bit more … type type type type … and the code reached the magic figure of 2500 lines of code …

We then took our copies and headed towards the beautiful and picturesque campuses of Sinhagad …

Once there, after explaining our game to 3 judges … who were least bothered … and I believe, slept through our presentation, we underwent, one of the most grueling rounds of cross examination ….

These judges might have been taking out all the ‘khun-nas’ which their external examiners took out on them … and really killed us …

Here is a part of a conversation …

( Seeing a game option : Ball speed )

Judge : What is this option for ?

We : Sir, this option controls the speed of the ball in the game …

Judge : What is the default value ?

We : Sir, 6 … gives you good game playability …

Judge : What data type is it ?

We : … umm … Integer …

Judge : Ok … put 32,000 there …

We : huh ? ( never expected that to come … )

Judge : Lets see what happens in your game …

( So we put 32,000 in the ball speed which had a default speed of 6 … how were we supposed to expect a maniac entries ? … and the game goes for a toss … no collision detection … all the players and the ball just vibrate on the screen )

Judge : What is this happening ?

We : Umm …. um … huh … hmm … Sir, the ball is moving so fast … that it is not coming in contact with the players … and therefore there is no collision detection …

Judge : Oh … that way …

Surprisingly, he bought that answer …

But the other judges also took our case … We were sure of not qualifying …

Other teams had made Contra type shooter ( ripping all the bmps from the original game itself ) and another team had made a proper football game …

Surprisingly, we came 2nd in the elims …

We came home that night … coded … coded … and coded …

Implemented tonnes of new features … including letting the player customize his own field … select playback music track … and put all the maniac error checking …

Went again next day for the finals …

The judges were different and two were actually from IBM …

However, they didn’t take our case …. but didn’t show any interest in our program either …

The IBM guys slept through our presentation … and we predicted our doom …

However, when the results were announced, we came first … the Contra guys who had come first in Round 1 came third … and the Football guys came second …

I later heard .. that the judges were really impressed with the way we had made the game …

Everything modular .. classes …

We had thrown in some interrupts also … were able to play music in the background … along with foreground music … and everything …

The rest is all history …

The trophy is in the showcase, money in the bank … and I might have finally something to put on my resume …

This entire incident has restored my faith in the saying “If you can dream it, you can do it”

Nothing seems impossible anymore …

After 10 days of mad programming, 3000 lines of code … and a very playable game … just have to get my life back on track … complete a few overdue assignments … and study for some orals …

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