Mmmm... games. With sugar.
Today we got the first really official roadmap for the Next Project. I can't really give much detail due to NDA restrictions, unfortunately. The bottom line though is that we basically have about twice as much time as I was expecting to get certain major features to an alpha-complete phase.
I already more or less have my own private roadmap spelled out for those areas, and I'm gearing up for a solid sprint of coding effort in the next couple of weeks that will put my areas of responsibility solidly ahead of schedule with respect to the official roadmap.
I'm honestly sorry to have to be so vague, but the reality is, giving too much information here would hurt the project overall. Since a lot of scheduling details are still up in the air, it's dangerous to even hint at actual timing information at this point. That sort of hinting has a way of getting spread into the fan community and blown out of proportion - often wildly.
Usually, what will happen is someone will make an (often totally misguided) attempt at extrapolating things like release dates, possible feature sets, and so on from such hints. Paradoxically, the less detail is given in such hints, the wilder the speculation becomes. Then a giant version of the Telephone Game is played across the Internet. Eventually, you find out in a few weeks that your team has "promised" massive sets of features and changes in a mere fraction of the actual project development schedule.
Naturally, reality and these speculations don't really get along so well. When real life fails to produce the fruits of your fans' wildest imaginings, they get annoyed. It is terrifically hard to convince an excited fan community that you never actually promised all that stuff, and that all of it was made up. The net result is a painful (and often expensive) PR snafu.
So, as much as I'd like to excitedly detail my schedule plans and all the features that are being lined up, I'll have to keep it very fuzzy for now.
I will say that we're putting a big focus on producing high-quality gameplay content. If we hit this roadmap as planned, we're in for a very exciting iteration in the X series.
Went out and saw Ice Age 2 on the spur of the moment tonight. My flatmate and I walked into the theatre literally seconds into the previews, without having any idea if there was even a movie playing at the time. Huzzah for spontenaity [smile]
All I really have to say about the movie is this: they could continue making this series until the day I die, and, provided that the little squirrel character continues to make regular appearances, I will pay to watch every last one of them. I have no idea who is behind that squirrel-thing, but whoever you are, you're a genius.
I'm going to spend the rest of the week making charicatured gesticulations and cute squeaky grunts and sniffles.