Aardvajk Software has just hired two more staff. Despite my desire to call them Schrodinger and Heisenberg, I've been overruled by the kids and they are actually called George and Mia.
They have been hired in a largely consultancy role and will be spearheading the marketing campaign for Squishy. George is an expert on viral marketing and web advertising and Mia is an expert on licking her own arse and biting my hand while I'm trying to work, so we have great hopes for their contribution to the company.
I have been working quite hard on Squishy in between getting cats and working fooking hard trying to satisfy the south-east of England's desire for central heating oil.
The root menu system is now fully implemented. It loads and displays a normal level file but blurred out under a slightly different menu. The menu and the last played level can be set via a session file that the game can test and set so it will be quite possible to have different menu backdrops depending on progress through the game a la Valve games. It also means that menu screens can be designed using the existing editor. I've spent probably more time on the editor over the last couple of years than the game so any extra usage I can get out of it is good.
I'm almost finished on the first tutorial level which guides the player through the basics of movement, firing the arms and moving boxes onto buttons. I've decided not to bother with save points within a level since that would be a complicated thing to implement with regard to the physics engine so I'm going to keep the levels short and snappy instead.
I've also dusted off the Inno code and created an installer that now only includes the bare minimum DX install. DX still accounts for the vast majority of the file size, but better that than non techies whining about d3dx versions.
Even if you hate my game, I defy you to not love the wizard graphic for the installer.
So we are moving at a fairly brisk pace towards a playable demo, all things considered. It will be a nice milestone to get to having a playable demo that is actually based on the final game. Two years work are finally starting to come together and even though I'm probably the only person that will use the editor, I'm more proud of that than the game really.
Due to the amount of effort poured in, it is actually now almost a pleasure creating content for the game, so that gamble has paid off well.