Video Games to Play with your Kids Jun 11 2024

Planet Crafter

I enjoy playing video games and I’ve been finding it frustrating to find decent ones with play with my kids. As an example you’d think the £29.99 Nintendo Switch Peppa Pig game would be fairly good. It is not. There is very little gameplay, the controls are unclear (don’t visually match the controller) and the loading times are insane (10 seconds+ per scene) for a 2D game with little happening, my youngest has time to ask me why its not playing at least 10 times before it actually does anything. The cheap Peppa Pig Chicken game is much better on tablets…

So I have decided to begin maintaining a list of games that my kids have enjoyed playing or watching me play. I’ll update this list over time. The list is here.

Unfortunately, I have not really found anything for five and under. There are various games based off of the things they’d typically watch (Paw Patrol) but they are fairly low effort and expensive. The only one to stick so far is Mario Kart with all the assists turned on.

24hr ECG May 2 2023

Not to turn this into a medical blog but figured it might be of interest to see what a 24hr ECG looks like. You rock up at hospital, usually early for an 24hr one.

You get three of these stuck to you
They are stuck at these locations
You clip this to your trousers or whatever
Fill in your activities and any symptoms

…and return the bits to the hospital the following morning. Proceed to rush home for a lovely shower.

I hate having this, but it is necessary. The older version of the box was about 12 times bigger, so the small clip on one is a great improvement.

Endure Another Game Mar 30 2023

I’ve just wrapped up another game. This one is called ‘Endure’ and is a base defence game with a money system to buy upgrades between game attempts. You can buy units and upgrades. The objective is to survive 5 minutes of spider attacks.

This ended up being more of a completable demo, as I had more features in mind but lost interest in taking it further.

You can play it here.

Endure 1
Endure 2

Guernsey Global Games Jam 2023 Feb 5 2023

We’ve just wrapped up Guernsey Global Games Jam 2023 at Guernsey’s Digital Greenhouse. I’ve lost track of how many we’ve done now, but it is a fair few! My employer, Cortex sponsored this year.

Me, looking a bit odd, showing our game

The theme this year was ‘Roots’. Our team was made up of 4 people, including myself: Marc Beavan, Matthew Champion and Aaron Smillie. We made a game about an alien meteor crashing in a town with a tentacle monster spreading out to destroy the buildings and kill the inhabitants. One of the townsfolk happens to have a helicopter which you can use to collect survivors and take them to safety. The different buildings are named (e.g. care home, orphanage, states, tax office) so you can decide who to save.


We used Godot this year.

Title Screen
Game 1
Game 2

Thanks to the Digital Greenhouse and especially Digital Ben for hosting.

Bilateral Inguinal Hernia Surgery Jan 16 2023


Over Christmas I had bilateral inguinal hernia laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery and documented my recovery to help anyone else to might find themself in a similar position.

How I noticed

For about a year I had been noticing strange changes to my well-being that I put down to old age such as…

  • back pain
  • acid reflux
  • left hip pain
  • strange stomach noises from left groin

It hit me that something was actually wrong when I was running along the cliffs (fairly normal for me - not eventful) and had the most painful stitch I have ever had in my life. It didn’t feel right. After getting home my testicles felt incredibly swollen for 24 hours and I noticed my groin was sticking out on the left side.

I went to the doctor, had a scan and it turned out I had a large hernia on the left and a small one on the right. It took about 9 months from going to the doctor to finally having the surgery.

Over this time I became unable to sleep through the night, the acid reflux got much worse, some days walking would hurt, etc.

Below are the notes I wrote on the day of and days following surgery.

Surgery Day

Arrived at hospital, put on the sexy see-through pants and tights. Had my hands numbed and went for the general anaesthesia.

Waking up from the general anaesthesia I believe my first-word was ‘pain’. The nurse helped with morphine but the massive ache would not subside. My testicles felt like I was suffering ‘blue balls’ x10 and my stomach filled with 3 Christmas dinners. The following 2 hours was probably the worst of my life, I was unable to get comfortable in any position. I refused my first attempt to stand after trying to sit: the pain was too much. Once I eventually did and attempted to do a wee I began burping, burping and burping until eventually most the aching left my body. The final relief was the removal of the drain (pipe sucking blood out my tummy). I did not like the drain or the removal process. After that I felt great, munched and drank until home time. Apparently all this pain is due to the gasses they fill you with by doing laparoscopic surgery.

I stayed up until 10pm at home in order to take my next medicines. Sleeping was harder than expected, I kept waking every 2 hours largely due to acid-reflux. I was very hot and did many wees.

Day 1

Woke up at 6am. The surgery site is more painful than before, which was not unexpected. Took more meds.

Pretty uneventful day, I managed the pain using the supplied painkillers.

The main achievement today was passing a fart. For whatever reason I just couldn’t control or feel the muscles required to do it until late afternoon.

The pain ramped up in evening so I increased by dose from moderate to severe pain.

One of my testicles is at least twice the size of the other and very delicate to touch or movement. The sack also feels like it had some liquid in, presumably blood.


Day 2

Slept much better. Woke once at 3am and then up at 6am. Decided to try laying more flat and found it was now more acceptable for my body. Sideways doesn’t work yet though.

Testicle issue remains. General pain is less.

Day 3

Able to sleep sideways on my right, the left does not feel right yet.

Testicles still enormous and black.

We had guests over (it is Xmas eve-eve) and was able to do deliver drinks to people, etc. Normally sit on the floor for guests but requested a seat on the sofa on this occasion.

Day 4

Probably would have slept fine if not for the toddler having tummy ache in the night.

Testicles less swollen, still black. I would probably say I am “fine” now. I am slightly slower to move, stairs are a little sore, probably couldn’t walk 5k yet but just sitting and moving around the house are fine.

Days Following

Pain generally decreased daily after this but was still very much aware I was ‘delicate’ for at least the two weeks.

I stopped taking Codeine after a week or so.

This was the first surgery I’d had removable stitches for and would like to report that it was barely noticeable having them out.

The only lingering side effect, which stopped at 4 weeks was my body telling me I needed to wee and poo via pain, rather than that “full” feeling.

I was able to walk and cycle 5k at 3 weeks and able to run 5k at 4 weeks. Possibly could have done both sooner but very much did not want to risk having to go through this all again by mucking the recovery up!

Stitches 1
Stitches 2 (very swollen belly)

Things I did

  • Ice pack 4 times a day for 20mins
  • Slept and rested sitting up with special triangle pillows
  • Did very little getting out of bed for the first 2 days
  • Took laxatives from day 2 (had surgery before and it was horrible not being able to go to the toilet)
  • Took pain meds exactly how instructed


All the original symptoms have gone. I can even sleep through the night again now!

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