A Swedish Warrior?

 

Copyright 2002

By John L Patton, tiltjlp

 

Joxer, whose real life name is Peo, lives in the middle of Sweden, and is thirty-one years old. The lack of a last name of or his home town is by design, and as Joxer said, I just dont like people to know exactly who or where I am. The mystery is part of my charm. Adding mystery to the mystery is his proclamation as The Mighty Warrior, in a country of historic peace.

 

Joxer continued his mysterious ways when he described himself as being roughly 189 cm tall and I weigh about 83 kgs, or perhaps less. Feel free to translate that into some alien imperical formula if you like. And so, if my calculations are accurate, Peo is just over six feet tall and weighs roughly 180 pounds.

 

Joxer shares his life and a house with his girlfriend, and since their house is over a 100 years old, and the surroundings show the years, it makes upkeep a major project. One of my plans for the future is to build a garage with enough room for a few pinball machines. Until then Ill have to keep playing and making VP tables. I own a Twilight Zone, which I bought a few years ago, and have stripped and cleaned down to the smallest screw.

 

I havent played it since Ive reassembled it, but with a friend, I do have seven other tables; Judge Dredd, No Good Goofers, Junk Yard, World Cup Soccer 94, Shadow, Who?Dunnit, and Champion Pub. We also have a collection of arcades, such as Neo Geo and PCB, plus a whole slew of spare parts.

 

As for my first pinball experience, that would have either been Alien Poker while camping on Aland Island, or Black Hole at a diner near me. I dont exactly remember when that would have been, but the games were fairly new at the time. I think we have the targets from that Black Hole in our basement, since my friend and partner bought a whole lot of games and parts from an old game operator. One of the games was that Black Hole from that diner. I pretty much like all pinball and arcade games, and play them as often as I can.

 

Joxer said that pinball and arcade are two of his hobbies, along with movies, and just about all things related to movies, including editing, cinetography, and directing. I have a quite extensive and expanding movie library, as well.

 

In an ever-changing, uncertain world, Peo has job stability few of us only dream about. I work as an IT-support engineer, helping people with their computer problems at a multi-national paper/pulp machinery company. I began working there in 1993, and I havent moved since, but I have advanced. I started working with AutoCAD, making drawings, but I switched to IT-support a few years later when computers became a good bit more commonplace.

 

I have worked with computers since the early days of the VIC-20, and I am self-taught all the way. Im fairly good at coding, and I have done quite a lot of programs of my own. Im no where near the best at VB scripting, but I can and do grasp the ideas and concepts related to VP coding, so I manage fairly nicely. I dont begin to think Im the best programmer or designer around, its more a matter of involving all the right people to handle each specific task, so that each part will fit snugly together and work correctly, which was the case with both MM and W?D. I found out that WPCMame happens to be from Sweden, and that makes it much easier to discuss not only problems but also solutions.

 

I dont recall exactly how I discovered Visual Pinball, but I think I had heard about a program that emulated the ROMs in pinball machines. I had plans with my friend to someday make our own game in 3D using Maya, 3Dmax, SI, or maybe Lightwave. Shortly after that, I followed a post on REC.GAMES.PINBALL, I think, and found VP. I thought, WOW! Now we could make a digital mockup of our table, and test every ramp to see if it was playable.

 

Joxer seems to remember that Visual Pinball had just been released when he happened upon it, maybe even its first release. Just about the same time, WPCMame became available, since Peo recalls using each program on its own. I got involved with some fellows, shiva being one of them, so I joined a forum, where wpcmame/sellenoff posted the first COM for WPCMame. And then over at the MSN board, I ran across a person called Zany/Rock*, who had done some tables in VP, and had started working on Medieval Madness.

 

So I began toying abound with making a version of TAF, about the same time Boris made his version. I began chatting with Zany/Rock*, and we discovered we lived only 20 km apart. We began working together, and made the first version playable in WPCMame, which I still have hidden away somewhere. Next came the emulator called PinMAME, which has since evolved into VpinMAME. We later received help from Snotz and completed the project. Which is now into its 4th update phase.

 

I have a couple more unreleased tables thriving on my HD, a pretty accurate version of Steel Wheels, Sorcerer, whenever I find time to finish it, and Who?Dunnit, which is my current project. This should be my legacy to the VP community, or not, and is our digital mockup.

 

Im a member, in fact, one of the trio of leaders, of the VPMExtreme Development Team, which is hosted by shiva, and which focuses on VPM tables. All the tables we complete are available at www.shivasite.com, which has the largest archive of pinball resources anywhere. Im not able to be as active as I would like to be, but I do stay busy.

 

In spite of everything, I expect to continue making VP/VPM tables for a long time to come. If that is a threat or a promise, Ill leave that for the VP community to decide, lol. I like the fact that people from every corner of the world can and do meet and cooperate, and that this hobby of ours simply keeps getting better all the time.

 

 

Copyright 2002, By John L Patton, tiltjlp.