My alias “Aesthemic” came about as I was searching for something both unique and representative of my approach to things. It’s a portmanteau of the words “aesthetic” and “systemic”. Admittedly there is no true deep meaning to the name as I was more so looking for something that didn’t have a lot of Google results that I could use. I also really love the word “aesthetic” and wanted to included it in some sort of way.
Since the late 90s I have been bouncing around the Internet from place to place searching for interesting things to do and see. I enjoy new and old technologies alike and often find myself reading about or watching content relating to old operating systems, hardware, and the different challenges computer engineers have overcome. Old technology can teach us a lot about both how we got here and the mindset one had to be to be successful in early day computing.
At my core I love writing, music, and computers. Chances are if you catch up with me at any point in the day I have some music playing and I am probably at my computer. Sitting at my computer on a Saturday morning working on something is my moment of bliss.
My fascination with rhythm games first began with DDR Max for the Playstation 2. It was my initial introduction to both the series and rhythm gaming as a whole. While I had played video games in the past that had rhythmic elements in some of their minigames, I had never encountered a game where the main mechanic was to press buttons to the timing of the music. Once I started to get the hang of the game, it began to change how I perceive video games.
Rhythm games are both a great way to connect with music and to challenge oneself. Over the past few years we have seen a renaissance in rhythm games where both the music and the charting is evolving. As more complex songs are added to these games it becomes increasingly difficult to deal with changing tempos, visual effects which aim to mislead the player, and brilliant charting that makes us rethink how we interpret patterns within the game.
I am also fascinated by how dedicated musicians within the rhythm game scene are to the art of creating music for use in a rhythm game. Musicians create their music for a wide variety of reasons, one of the most common being as a form of self-expression. In rhythm gaming, musicians have even more control over that form of self-expression by being able to dictate how a song is played within a rhythm game. I feel this is one of the common reasons why we find a lot of musicians contributing to the BMS scene.
Tetris is where my gaming journey first originated. While it may appear to be a rather simple premise for a video game, Tetris maintains a surprising level of depth. It has a devout fan base and an active competitive scene. Modern games like Tetris Effect and Puyo Puyo Tetris have helped increase the popularity in learning to play the game beyond simply placing blocks on the field in an effort to clear four lines at once.
Panel de Pon is a game series I found at an early age under the title “Tetris Attack”. It is a panel-based puzzle game where a player swaps two panels horizontally to match three or more of the same simple. When those panels connect, they will disappear after a moment. While this is happening, the player can still move other blocks and aim to create a “chain” of disappearing blocks. Chaining makes the game addictive and significantly increases the skill ceiling as the player needs to think about how they build their chains.
Puyo Puyo is a juggernaut in the puzzle gaming sphere. I was originally introduced to it in “Kirby’s Avalanche” on the Super Nintendo, but became enamored with it later on in life. Puyo Puyo Tetris was the game that really made me begin looking into it as a serious contender. It eventually involved into a full blown obsession with the series. I have Puyo Puyo Chronicles installed on my 3DS despite it never getting an official English release (yay fan translations!).
Since I was a young child I had been interested in computers and technology in general. Our first family computer was a Compaq Presario which allowed us to dip our toes into computer games, word processing, and doing a little bit here and there on the Internet. The machine, however, wasn’t that suited for playing computer games like Starcraft. It would eventually overheat and turn off in those situations.
By the time I had graduated high school, I had gotten a job that allowed me to actually build a computer. My first computer was an AMD-based system with four cores. It was a nice little machine that I used to play games like Half-Life 2 and Ragnarok Online. As time would go on, I would become more and more interested in unlocking the hidden potential of the machines I would build.
In addition to having a fondness for building computers, Internet culture has also had a profound impact on my life. While I generally bounced around the Internet from site to site, I have a fondness for IRC chat and web forums. I come from the days before Facebook was even a thing and remember the times when one could actually run into the same person on multiple forums. It’s actually how I remain in contact with a few different people.
While I have been flirting with Python for a number of years, the past year has gotten me knee deep into writing Python. I use it on a daily basis at work for data manipulation, data importing, and handling flat file formats among other things. By working with it, I have become rather comfortable with the language and am currently looking for new ways to leverage it.
One thing I am currently working on is getting comfortable with working with a variety of different libraries to better understand how they interact with Python. For example, I am looking at different Python game engines and a variety of existing Discord bots to get a better feel for how things work and how code should be structured. I am considering spending some of my free time building some sort of game in Python, though I am not entirely sure what type of game I would both want to and would be capable of creating.
I currently love messing around with the Pandas library since it has saved me a lot of time and frustration at work.