Jonathan Coulton Adventures Released

July 7th, 2013 by greg  |  comment

After many years in development, Kerrin Hardy’s game “Jonathan Coulton Adventures” is released, built using Lassie Shepherd. This is the first-ever full talkie game ever produced using the Shepherd engine. Nice job Kerrin, and congratulations! (Now we just need a formal hint guide… I can’t find a way out of the first room!). You can play the game for free online at


May 8th, 2013 by greg  |  comment

I’m releasing the Constellation.js JavaScript library, which should look familiar to the old-hat Lassie devs out there. Yep, Constellation is basically a JavaScript build of the Lassie Shepherd walkable area geometry system. Constellation offers many of the basic grid procedures that were available in Shepherd, but also expands the system with considerable new features… Where Lassie Shepherd used to limit grid geometry to just points, beams, and rectangles; Constellation allows flexible polygon areas and dynamic line plots. This is the system I always wanted to build for Shepherd, but never committed time and patience to put together the math to support it.

The library is open source in its GitHub repo, and an interactive demo is available.

Night of the Rabbit

February 10th, 2013 by greg  |  comment

Here’s an exciting new game coming from Daedalic Entertainment: The Night of the Rabbit. While it’s not made with Lassie, it’s made by one of our own – one Mr. Matthias Kempke. After wrapping up A Stitch in Time, Matt was hired by Daedalic to bring some new material into their catalogue. The result is a new tale of mystery an intrigue set in a world reminiscent of The Wind in the Willows, and fans of Stitch will likely see some thematic similarities in this new title.

Release for Night of the Rabbit is scheduled for Spring 2013, with plans to release the English and German versions at at once. Stay tuned…

Lassie Shepherd is done

September 25th, 2012 by greg  |  comment

After three years of ongoing development from 2008-2011, work on the Lassie Shepherd engine is officially over. While there’s always more that can be done for a piece of software, the driving factor behind terminating development is primarily related to the decline of Flash. My own career has migrated into HTML5 and JavaScript engineering, and I haven’t touched Flash in over a year now (so to be honest, I’m not sure I’d remember how to make Shepherd updates at this point!)

The complete open source code will remain available in my GitHub repository for anyone interested in carrying the torch. Otherwise, it’s been a good run and we’ve made some fine games with the Shepherd engine.

Also regarding the question of Lassie for HTML5: while I can never say never, it is unlikely that I’ll pursue a complete port of the engine for HTML5, simply because it takes so friggin’ much work to build an application of Lassie’s size. I am still doing hobby programming projects in JS and HTML5 (available in my GitHub repo), although I’m enjoying taking on smaller projects that can be assembled in a matter of weeks or months rather than years. There is an excellent chance that you’ll see some individual Lassie systems showing up as JS component libraries in the future.

Lassie moves to GitHub

June 5th, 2012 by greg  |  comment

I’ve scheduled Lassie Shepherd’s Google Code subversion repo on for deletion, so SVN should be going offline within the month. However, never fear! This does not mean that Lassie Shepherd will be unavailable as open-source software, it just means we’re moving to GitHub. You may fork and/or follow the new repo at:

See you on GitHub!

Source download instructions

February 7th, 2011 by greg  |  comment

I’ve added a page into the Developers’ section with instructions on how to download Lassie Shepherd source code from Google Code. Hopefully this will help folks who have limited experience with version controls systems like Subversion. The new page is available here.

Lots o’ new Shepherd documentation

January 31st, 2011 by greg  |  comment

For anyone following the source repo’s commit log, you’ve probably seen that the Lassie Shepherd Manual PDF has been getting lots of updates recently. Indeed it has. I’ve finally gotten around to writing about the editor controls, and have been taking some time to better organize the document as a whole. While I wouldn’t say that these updates are going to clear up all the outstanding questions about working with Lassie Shepherd, I figure they can’t hurt!

Latest documentation PDF will always be available for download here (to download, right-click the “view raw file” link and choose “save file as…”).

The who, what, and why of open source…

January 12th, 2011 by greg  |  comment

Wow… there’s been a flurry of activity since yesterday’s open-source announcement, so I thought I’d follow up with some of the logistics and FAQs.

First – why? Well, it wasn’t all that hard of a decision and one that I’ve had on my plate for quite a while. I’ve mellowed on the whole “what’s mine is mine” philosophy since the height of my college days, and I’ve really grown to respect open-source over the years. Also, I’ve long since decided that I wasn’t interested in putting the effort into Lassie to make it a viable mainstream commercial product, so really – who was I keeping it from? No one. I was just turning off potential developers and denying the engine all chances of growing a true developers community. So, I’ve been thinking about going open source for a couple of years now. I’ve just never gotten around to it because I’ve been so focused –specifically– on Stitch.

Okay, so it’s open. Now, can you contribute? Well, I will neither welcome nor restrict contributors at this point. I am completely open to other developers joining the charge to make Lassie even better. However, I’m not prepared to open the floodgates yet. By all means, please email me if you have ideas, proposals, or new code – and we’ll see where it goes!

Lassie Shepherd released as open source

January 11th, 2011 by greg  |  comment

This has been on my to-do list for over a year now, so I’m pleased to finally make the announcement. The complete Lassie Shepherd ActionScript 3 code base is up on Google code at You’re welcome to check out the repository for complete access to all engine-related material, including the editor app, player app, game menu, localization kit, and application bundle.

This release contains the complete engine codebase behind What Makes You Tick: A Stitch in Time. In fact, I’ve even added some new features in since Stitch, including localization tools, auto-numbering for dialogue sounds, and touch-based UI support.

So, have at it! I only ask that you accredit me, Greg MacWilliam of Lassie Games, in your primary production credits as the “Engine Programmer”. Thanks, and good luck.

Seeking translators for Lassie menu

October 12th, 2010 by greg  |  comment

In an effort to step-up Lassie Shepherd’s localization support, I’m trying to get the game menu application translated into several major languages to provide some built-in language support. This job consists of translating about 100 words making up short phrases like “Load Game” and “Are you sure you want to quit?”. I currently have English and German versions of the menu, and I’d like to expand that to include (at least) French, Italian, Spanish, and Russian if possible. Contact me if you’re interested and could offer some native translations; I’ll send you a Flash script where you can directly replace the English text.

Thanks all!


We now have English, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and Catalan translations. Thanks to all who responded! Whenever possible, I’ve made a note in the localized class comments to document who provided the translation (I did loose track of a few of the early translation authors – sorry!).