Lidier's Game [Part Four]

If journaling were like writing a book, she wondered what others would think of it. She wondered, for writing the story of her life, in bits and pieces, whether anyone would actually even read a story of a Mestizo/Meti girl, decked out in black. A girl who focused mostly on one singular character, flowing like notes from a scattered personality, that manifested as more of a personality defect. She disliked real arachnids, yet liked binary spiders. She avoided anything in real life she didn't have sexual feelings for, but the draw of the game involved more than her sensuality. She dreamed of binary bus crawling all over her nude body, biting into her tender neck.

She masturbated to French girls in a guillotine.

Who got it in the neck.

And the flow of the dress / in her great caress

Savored for touch / once longing for Dutch

Girls with touch / as if it were a crutch.

For her, men were simply to much.

The fish now flowing

Under the snowing


Longed for kissing

She who was missing


Caressing, kissing

Longing, snowing


Her life was a life of dissolving prose, that never quite reached poetry. She longed for her personal oblivion, draped all over the page. Over all fantasy games, filled with the most vengeful of sages, who would just as soon decapitate her as made her breakfast, while camping under the ruins of long gone civilization. She walked through corridors, hoping to find some means of an exit.

But finding only dust.

What the difference between a French and a Spanish girl? One says Te Amo at her garroting, and the other j’aime vous at her guillotining. In either case, the result is the same: one dead girl in a casket at the end of the week. One severs the head completely, the other severs the head internally. One is bloodless, the other has blood all over the floor.

Lidier had no intention of becoming either one, thus mostly kept to herself for the following weeks. On her laptop, she finally figured out how to do procedural generation: instead of creating separate dungeons within a single code source, you clone the original game, change around the furniture, and tie together the dungeons with a separate program called a game state. It’s through this game state that creates for a random selection between different dungeon shapes: square dungeons, circular dungeons, and triangular dungeons. Sometimes rectangular. In all cases the navigation is determined through a navigation variable: rather than using a boolean to move the cursor.

Lidier was not quite to the level of making games that could be uploaded to different virtual reality game shops: for one thing she had almost no experience with using Graphical User Interfaces. She hated screens on program editors based on bright color schemes, preferring the traditional color of green text on black background that was closer to the original font of the early internet. These days word processors seemed to focus on white screen and black text. Yet the local glasses doctor always bugs you to not be on the computer as much, because it might burn your eyes out of your sockets.

On this night, she decided to install shoes, and see how much she could transfer her game Nihilist to this new interface. Eventually she wanted to switch to using sprites, but sprite had long sense stopped being in vogue after the turn of the nineties. She was stuck painting dots on the screen, while the rest of the gaming industry was switching to various forms of three dimensional quality, gradually becoming more and more indistinguishable from reality. But with games composed of text and numbers, there was not a danger of subject matter being to obscene to be played by even the youngest of gamers. Unless the state became such, that their desire for controlling what people read and play was not limited to the aesthetic of pure visual flavor.

Games came in various flavors: First Person Shooters, Survival Horror, Tactical Role Playing Games. Much more. Sometimes these different genres would blend till the end of time. While others stuck more closely to their original roots, not changing much sense they were first created: the only exception within classic JRPGs has mostly been Fina;l Fantasy, becoming less and less like a JRPG, and something closer to an action RPG as the decades went on. Much of this had to do with creators not being allowed to own the content which they publish, thus if something becomes a companies flagship product, the game “innovates†and strays from its original roots to the chagrin of genre purists. Even Roguelike games were not entirely immune to this form of snobbery: much of this genre was obsessed with a strictly action form of that gaming experience.

But Lidier liked puzzles, and not action.

Her life flowed like substitution notes.

It's easy to claim to be an unplugger, when your face is well known enough to be on the net. Just drop the remote, fast forward; hope that every other day will be like the previous one. Instead Lidier argues with herself every hour after the next, while making one Roguelike after the other. Dot matrix grid layout. @ man representing Indiana Jones, fighting demons worse than plantation owners. If life were a five point essay, Lidiers symphony would be one without a theme or prompt. She had once fawned over a free software evangelist, but now he acts like a televangelist. Who now spends their day bashing Julian Assange, going with American propaganda despite the US wanting to assassinate him. The free software guy now represents everything she was politically against.

Lidier's hero was only herself.

When she last opened her laptop, she had a day before finished designing the next iteration of her own variety of Roguelike game. The difference was, unlike most other games on the market, it was almost entirely geared toward singular rooms: in order to do a larger rooms, she had to use booleans to turn some rooms off and others on. This required considerably more nesting than what she was generally used to, and within each boolean, its own separate set of coordinate variables to navigate, and different drawn text files to refer to do with the index of different folders. She had been completely acquainted with referring to statistics from a file rather than having it reinitialize every day she tested the different versions of the game. The problem with initializing it each start up, it mean everything you ever earned in the game was completely erased. When you refer to the file, the game reads from that file, allowing for stat boosts and other power ups to become permanent. It was this matter of permanence that had been a larger road block to her personalized path to building virtual reality games for the past year or so.

There were several booleans: bedroom boolean, living room boolean, bathroom boolean, among other crucial switches. You wanted each of these switches to have a degree of self-containment, so that when you assigned coordinates, you didn't use the same set of them for each room. This was useful if you wanted to make each room @ man would walk through be a different size. More common in more advanced video games, where you didn't want the home state to vary as much as dungeons, such as in various commercial games on the market like Diablo. The only reason the size of room didn't change much in Rogue, was simply do to hardware limitations. The only thing Lidier wanted in her own games was not strict Procedural Generation, but only procedural generation within the narrow context of dungeon crawling outside of the digital villa.

She preferred figuring things out on her own.

Rather than browsing Hubzilla.

Housing Crises, essentially an extended form of capital punishment, without the benefit of an appointed lawyer. Groups of people being made unpersons, and dying without pennies to their name. It's not as flashy as a Guillotine, and legally not listed as a form of execution. But make no mistake, the end result as always the same. Misery riding on the back of apparent stability, hope fading nightly. Lidier thought this was only an American thing. But it was one aspect of the United States that could easily be exported to Europe, with the climb of the far right.

And it wouldn't be much of a change from the 19th century, when slaves girls would be dragged by the wrist into faux courts, and soon hung by the neck for murdering people's children, yet weeks later the children turning up alive. Very few people seem to think how easily we could get back to this point. But all it takes is one demagogue with an ax to grind. One group of people to scapegoat, and one culture to vaporize from history.

Lidier escaped this purge narrowly.

She hoped it wasn't a matter of time till she'd be asked back.