Thursday, 30 September 2010

Some Relevant Images

All images public domain.
Bee image released into the public domain by Ferry Schneider.
Sad face released into the public domain by Harlekin96.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Well Then

So I found an object that responds to (and, half the time, refers to itself by) the wrong name. I'm too nervous to upload a new version now, especially because my Internet connection has suddenly decided to become extra flaky. It'll have to stay.

I really need to just walk away from the thing now. It is what it is. My testers did a fantastic job in a short timespan, but by its very nature this is a game where no-one (myself included) has yet experienced every situation the player can encounter.

So my game may be a little rough around the edges, but I like to think it has a strong personality and a sturdy constitution. It may not be a work of interactive literature, or a head-scratching puzzler, but it has something entertaining to offer you, and I hope you'll all enjoy delving in and discovering it for yourself.

Check the IFComp website on Friday, and, at some point, in some time zone, my entry should be available there for download. During the competition, I won't be able to discuss the game publicly, but there'll be an email link in the game and on the IFComp site if you want to contact me about it.

Thanks all.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Done. I hope.

My last tester found a couple of small issues that I almost didn't think were worth updating my version on the comp site, until I noticed that as part of my own testing I'd actually removed the fix for the worst bug in the game found by a previous tester.  D'oh.

But, what's there now is what's there. I have to stop working on it at some point before the deadline, so, well, here goes nothing.

Monday, 27 September 2010

Finish line in sight...

I've uploaded a tentative final version to the IFComp site, and passed the game along to my trusted final tester...

Come Thursday, the deadline passes...

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Finishing Up

I've still got reports from a couple of testers to go, but nothing left on my list to do.

Today I created a little PDF "feelie" to go with the game.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Nothing to Report

Made a couple of small additions.

Thursday, 23 September 2010


Hints are finished. Hopefully there are no major issues left to be found by my last few testers.

Starting to feel, dangerously, like I can relax.

La La La

A few more bugs fixed. I also got started on the hint system. More than half done, but obviously not going to be finished tonight.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010


I was hoping to have a night off, but many of my testers got back with timely bug reports and I had a long list of things to fix instead. On the plus-side, I'm now more confident this thing will offer at least some entertainment.


Tonight I resolved not to go to bed until I'd completed all the work on my list.

Now very tired, but ready to embark on the second phase of testing the shit out of this thing.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

So Close

By my reckoning I must have defined over a hundred objects these past couple of days. I'm now pretty exhausted.

Left on my list: one small part of the game, and a few things that don't work as nicely as they should.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Day On

At least some of it. I suspect I could have this thing in a reasonable state of completion if I put in a proper day's work on it tomorrow.

And since I've got less than two weeks left, that would probably be a good idea.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Day Off

Spent half an hour killing a few little bugs and rough patches.

Now going to take a day off from this thing.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Still Progressing...

Finally adding content to the thing that needs content, automated something else for the player and implemented something I missed right at the start of the game.


Wasn't able to work on the thing much today. Sort of finally in a good position to start adding that damn content. Still need to finish the ending. I think finally getting this thing onto the final stretch is going to have to wait for the weekend, but I'm going to start soliciting testing and feedback now...

Actually, right now I'm going to crawl into bed.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010


I wasn't looking forward to finding a way to disallow this particular set of actions. And then I realised: actually, just allow the action and have the relevant character say something about it.

If you know what I mean.

Which you don't.

Uh-oh, it's zero hour. I made a concerted effort today to implement all the scenery I needed to. I've also done a bit of work on that vaunted mid-game content.

I still need to add a lot more content, and finish off the epilogues. And there's some stuff that can wait, like the hint system.

But what I have by tomorrow evening should be very testable. If you're one of my regulars, expect me to hit you up with an email tomorrow to check you're alive/available.

Monday, 13 September 2010


So tired. Cannot wait until I'm not working on this thing anymore.

It's now possible to play the game through from beginning to end. Probably. I haven't actually tried it. And there's a lot of unimplemented stuff left in the final act.

Still, I guess all that's left at this point is scenery and content. And Wednesday I'll release a private beta to my poor, poor volunteers. It may have some bits missing, but hopefully it'll be enough for testing and development to both progress.

Sunday, 12 September 2010


Phew, I can't even remember everything I got done today.

All that's left now is:

1. Fully implementing the third act (there's some gaps at the moment, so you can't play the game all the way through).

2. Adding all that mysterious "content" I keep mentioning but never explaining (I finished off one minor kind today).

3. Miscellaneous bits and bobs - a few rooms with missing scenery, some stupid actions that succeed, the hints system etc. etc.

I've certainly achieved way more than I expected. I'm not sure I'll meet my self-imposed beta deadline, but unless my testers discover Serious Problems, I should have something to release in the comp.


Saturday, 11 September 2010


Implemented the game's other major NPC and an important widget.

Now all that's left is to add the content that will make the main gameplay/puzzle/thing interesting, put the logic and scenes in place to reach the endgame and, well, implement the endgame.

That'll take no time at all, I'm sure.


Friday, 10 September 2010


Did a little work on the endgame, didn't finish anything.

Alternating between extreme optimism and pessimism when it comes to the deadline.

Thursday, 9 September 2010


I've drawn a line under the game's first act. I've also finally planned out the third and final act. The second act still has a couple of big things outstanding including all that content I mentioned.

I am making huge leaps and bounds with this game, but I'm starting to think I may not meet my deadline. Hopefully the weekend will give me the time I need to make even more progress.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010


Worked on a smattering of small features today - which means I added a lot of ticks to my to-do list, without gaining the satisfaction of feeling I finished anything important.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010


Okay, I've completed the highest priority aspects of the second most important gameplay mechanic (such as there is gameplay). (The first most important bit is already kind of complete, but kind of also waiting for me to generate shit-tonnes of content for it.) I also implemented a piece of labour-saving automation for the player that's been bugging me.

Looking at my list, the "must-have" items are looking more and more doable within a short time-scale, while the "would-like-to-have" items are seeming a bit too optimistic. (And there are few things so outlandish and involved I didn't even bother to put them on the list.)

Although, actually, some of these lowest priority items are the kind of things you see in a game, go "Wow! Look at that!" and then completely forget about (or get annoyed at the unexpected complexities they add). Sometimes working to a tight deadline is just what you need to make you cut out unnecessary crap.

Monday, 6 September 2010


I've got all the main locations in place now, and I've polished off the direction system (something I came up with for another project and am rather fond of).

I did perhaps spend a little too long writing random chatter for an NPC and implementing a useless widget for one room.

Next I'll work on this thing that I won't tell you what it is.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

5 days done, 9 to go...

Well, I now have a roadmap of features to tick off. There's over twenty things I still need to add, where "thing" can mean something relatively simple - or something relatively... not simple.

So, time to schedule work and prioritise.

There's a first time for everything, it seems.