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How to Throw a Better Curveball in Pokemon GO

I’ve been a big fan of Pokemon GO! since its release and have leveled my way up to 22. However, I’ve only just figured out how to throw a decent curve ball. Why throw a curve ball? Because you gain extra experience and (supposedly) have a greater chance of catching the targeted pokemon.

If you’re like me, you stumbled across the curve ball when one of your less-than-straight throws glittered spectacularly, but ultimately missed your target by a wide margin. When I saw that first curve ball, I made more attempts to toss the perfect curve ball by making parabola-shaped gestures of varying forces and widths. Then, while attempting to save a pokeball from a dodging Rattata, the pokeball I had been holding started to spin! As an experiment, I threw the ball diagonal gesture, but in a straight line. Sure enough, the ball made a clean arc and…missed the Rattata, I had overthrown the target. With a lighter toss, I was able to catch the little bugger with ease and a grabbed bonus XP from all of the curve-bally-goodness. With a few more practice tosses, I’m finding a great increase in my success rate of catching pokemon. By using this technique, you can more accurately predict your throws and not get foiled by the ball that randomly curves away from your target.

The technique to throw a great curve ball is simple, just “grab” the ball and spin it rapidly in little circles, by doing so you “wind” the ball up. Whenever you’re ready, launch the ball in a straight (but diagonal) line at your target in the opposite direction that the ball is spinning. If that doesn’t make sense, I took a screen recording of me catching a drowzee using this technique, check it out:

I’m super excited for all of the extra XP and looking forward to an easier time catching pokemon. I hope this post helped you in your pokemon go! adventures!

Feel free to hit me up on twitter (@kshankin) if you have any questions (or just want to say “hi”).

Fixing Let’s Encrypt Not Being Able to Find My VHost

Wanting to be able to process requests over SSL, but not wanting to self-sign so that it’s easier on any visitors that come across here led me to find the Let’s Encrypt CertBot. CertBot has a neat little client that will automagically set up SSL with minimal input from you. However, I was running into the problem: we were unable to find a vhost with a Server name or address 

I was using an Apache webserver running a CentOS 6 install from DigitalOcean, although ultimately I don’t believe that this had any bearing on my problem. An abbreviated version of my VirtualHosts file looked something like this:

<VirtualHost *:80>
 DocumentRoot /var/www/html/popthestuff
 ServerName popthestuff.com
 ServerAlias www.popthestuff.com
</VirtualHost>

<virtualHost *:80>
 DocumentRoot /var/www/html/funplusplus
 ServerName funplusplus.com
 ServerAlias www.funplusplus.com
</virtualHost>

<virtualHost *:80>
 DocumentRoot /var/www/html/magicaljukebox
 ServerName magicaljukebox.com
 ServerAlias www.magicaljukebox.com
</virtualHost>

<virtualHost *:80>
 DocumentRoot /var/www/html/fatluis
 ServerName fatluis.com
 ServerAlias www.fatluis.com
</virtualHost>

A quick google search led me to discover that the CertBot client can’t handle multiple vhosts in one file, that fix is easy enough. I split the vhosts into individual files, yet I was still running into an issue, only popthestuff was being detected by the client.

I noticed that there is a minor difference between my popthestuff vhost and all the other entries, the vhost tag. As it turns out, the certbot client is case-sensitive, so changing:

<virtualHost *:80>

To

<VirtualHost *:80>

Is what allowed the client to run flawlessly for me. Hope this helps anyone else having the same problem!

I’m still around!

I haven’t streamed in two full weeks now (possibly a little more even), life has just been too busy. Rest assured, more streaming and updates will be coming soon, I’m just trying to wrap up a couple of projects around my house to get it renter-ready. We also had a crazy curveball thrown at us last night when our dog, who has never had any issues before, had two seizures. My wife and I were worried all night and neither one of us got much sleep.

In any case I’ll just keep pushing and I’m going to try and squeeze some game dev with streaming in this week. We’ll come out the other side eventually.

A Nice Long Stream Session

I had a nice game development streaming session tonight for Pop the Stuff. Just under 4 hours of development time went in and productivity came out as a result :D.  A handful of people stopped by to join in on the fun and talk shop about Java.

I’ve broken the game play up into rounds, to give the players a little break to celebrate their triumph over the previous round. A new HUD was also implemented which displays the score at a better resolution and highlights the multiplier.

On the next stream, I plan on tweaking the layout of the HUD (just a little bit).

New Heads Up Display Designed

I designed a new heads up display which better focuses on the players score and the multiplier bonus that they are receiving. You may also notice that there is now a clear bar running underneath the scoreboard, this was done intentionally for visual effects of having the solutions on either side of the hud spill over to it’s opposite end.

Pop the Stuff updated heads up display