It is time for May’s iPhone game update and progress has been made! A whole nine hours of work went into creating a working map editor and it was great fun to create. I learnt a lot about Cocoa, Interface Builder and XCode 4. All in, definitely worth it. Can you feel it yet? You can, can’t you… there’s a but coming and it’s not the firm, rounded female version with two ‘t’s, it’s the apprehensive, confused single-‘t’ version that potentially leads to complete changes.
The problem is that as much as I love my idea, it invokes too much asset creation. That kind of stuff doesn’t come free. Unlike the outrageously over hopeful teenage designers who advertise with “leet MMORPG WOW beater, just need 10 programmers and 10 artists.. will split revenue no contracts just trust honest I am an expert, not living with mummy!11!oneone!”, I know my limits here and also I know why I am doing it: for the fun. I want to make a game that is a blast to play that someone else might also enjoy. There is little point in doing it if by the time I am done, the window of opportunity has slammed down on my fingers and rendered the effort pointless.
So a turning point has been reached. I recognise that cobra-art, as stylish as I fool myself into thinking it is, is not suitable for a published game. Furthermore, it takes me bloody ages to draw anything and my repertoire consists of snakes, germs, giraffes (necks and heads only), one toaster, a pigeon (he took hours) and some other unconnected junk. Drawing hundreds of little animating sprites and map blocks across three different themes as well as designing the maps themselves is, well, a little like saying that I am hungry enough to eat a hippo and then actually doing it. It’s over-optimistic by a massive margin and I’d never get enough barbecue sauce.
Now I moan about this indecisiveness leaving lots of unfinished stuff behind, but this is different (hahahaha!) no, really, it is different. I look at the book ideas folder on my computer and see tons of stuff. Will I ever finish them? Of course not. Are any of them unborn classics? Unlikely. Will I raid them and cut them into little bits for future blog posts? Possibly. The thing is, I don’t write for a living. I knocked out some books when I was younger so I have a sorta been there, done that. It is the same with this game. It is pure fun. I want to see if I can do it: me, a couple of volunteers and a year or so’s effort leading to a mobile game that is not rubbish. The key here is that it leads to something. The effort is worthless if there isn’t a game to enjoy at the end whether that game is published or not.
Needless to say, I have another idea. It is something that has been forming gradually in my mind for over twenty years. It is something that, until now, I could not see being possible without a huge team and a suitcase full of money. Then, whilst soaking in a particularly relaxing bath a week or two back, I had a bit of a brainwave. I finally figured out how to do it quickly and easily: like figuring out how to make a 10,000 piece jigsaw puzzle assemble itself using nothing but the power of bacon. It is terribly exciting. I have had a (non sexual) tingle of anticipation over this idea that I have not felt for a while. Like all massive strokes of good fortune, I am currently in the ‘surely there is a catch’ stage. I have not found said catch yet so I am going to give it some thought during the next month or so. July is a busy month for me work wise so I will let the idea roll around my braiiiiins for a bit and perhaps sketch a few ideas and maybe even try out an algorithm or two to see if my hunch is right. In the meanwhile, there are BBQs to be had and much wine to be drunk.
About the CobrasI'm a C, C++, Objective C and PHP programmer. I develop various things for PCs, Macs and the iOS platforms. On and off I'm developing an iPhone game which I expect I shall never finish. I feature progress reports on how far I am from completing it in this blog along with me rattling on about learning French and any other junk I need to get off my chest. I shouldn't really need to say it in this day and age, but obviously, the opinions here are mine and not those of anyone who pays me... unless I've been bribed, in which case, all bets are off. There's more here.
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