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The cutting room floor

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Reading Week

And so comes the end of Reading Week. I wasn't as productive as I had wanted to be this week, but at least I got some work done. I have two midterms on Monday (German and CS), so I'm confident that Sunday will be something reasonably hellish. [smile]

Membrane Massacre

I embarked on the mission to write Membrane Massacre (originally named "Gone Micro") in November of 2006. It is now nearing the end of February 2007, and MM remains incomplete. In the last three months of development Membrane Massacre has evolved far past the game that I released back near the end of November. The game actually has a polished feel to it. It's by no means ideally polished, and I'm realizing that it won't be.

3.5 months is enough. Looking back at it now, it seems like I've wasted so much time. I find it hard to believe that what I have right now took me nearly a third of a year to create -- my progress has been pretty sluggish since December.

That's why I've decided that rather than let MM continue development until what could easily be the 6-month mark, I'm going to cut out a handful of content and features in order to get the game out the door. I'm extremely pleased with the game that I've created, and its public feedback thus far, so I have no doubt this next iteration will be even better.

To Be Cut
  • Enemy A* pathfinding AI
  • Enemy projectile 'leading' (ie. having foes fire at where you are going to be, rather than where you are)
  • Enemy weapon resistances (eg. reflecting laser beams, ricocheting bullets)
  • Enemy evolution (offspring that are split get stronger)
  • Sub-Bosses (the Mecha Cell, the Freezer Cell, the Mother Cell) [sad]
  • Explosion shrapnel (to get wedged into cell membranes and walls)
  • More level generation algorithms
  • 'Killer Weapons' (special weapons of large-scale destruction, per-ship)
  • Multiple ships (and a selection screen/system to go with it)
  • Victory Reports (at the end of each level; x enemies killed, etc)
  • Trophies / Trophy Room (secret prizes for doing certain things, like beating the game with only the Blaster, not hitting any walls, etc)
  • Highscores (for Story and Survival modes)
  • Boosters (let player fly super-fast and tear through walls/enemies)
  • A bunch of new regular enemies
  • Etc. (gah, there's ~8 more items on my list [grin])

Anyways, you get the idea. I have so many great ideas that, if implemented, would definitely kick the game up several more notches. However, Membrane Massacre was only intended to be a quick, 2-week adventure. I never dreamed that it would still be in development by the end of the next year, nor would I have had wanted it to. It's time to wrap things up and get the game finished and out the door. This doesn't mean that I'm tired of it and plan on rush-jobbing the rest of the game. I intentionally cut features in such a manner that the remainder of my motivation will be used to commit myself 100% to the remaining items left to implement. Perhaps the other factor for me wanting to release is to let everyone get a look at what I've been toiling over for these months. [smile]


I'm still not completely decided on my next project, but plenty of solid ideas are floating around between me and Draffurd. I want it to be one that reaches a near-commercial state. I'm going to polish the heck out of it, write clean code, and see it to completion. I've gotten a lot better on the first and last item as of late. Just need to trim the code a little! Hurr!

Open Source

Is there anyone with any preference about MM being open/closed source? The code is an absolute mess, but it matters not there's actually folks that think they'd get something out of it. [smile]

Hurr, good night!
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Sure, make it open source, it couldnt hurt anybody? And plus, maybe some will end up adding those features you were planning, or learning something from it.

While there is no real downfall for making it opensource. =)

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Seeing as you're going to send me the source for an OS X port now that it's done (like you said), I have no preference on its open/closed source-ness.

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Lol Ravuya. I would love to see the source, so I suggest open. However what I don't want to see is a 'completed by the fans' edition.


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Yeah, I'd love to take a look at the source for MM. You think your code is a mess - you should see the Udo code base [smile].

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Original post by EasilyConfused
Yeah, I'd love to take a look at the source for MM. You think your code is a mess - you should see the Udo insert-arbitrary-program-name-here code base [smile].


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