Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Beta 2 came in the mail today! Verdict: Worse then the last one I downloaded. It doesn't work on my computer. I load up the "Team Suite" CD, and my drive can't even find it, so I pop in the "Team Foundation Server", and the bastard thing's specifications are like 3 times what my computer can do (I'm running on a Pentium III here). I didn't even bother with the whole SQL Server. I'm almost considering re-installing the C++ 2005 Express Beta and seeing if I can manage with that. Well, whatever, I wasn't going to need it anytime in the next couple of years anyway. For now, Dev-C++ will be more then efficient.
So as for progress on the project, I was able to get, well, virtually nothing done today. I went in to work with a friend (got him a job at the same place, it's sweet) and didn't get back till late, so I won't have the next piece of concept art untill tomorrow. I also have to pick up some graph-paper so I can get started on level design.
I decided I'm going to hold off on the wall-jump feature until if I release another sidescroller. Now, I'm not trying to be stupid and plan a sequel before developements even begun, but if I did release a sequel, I know a much better character to utilize a wall jump. I just can't make a gamble on designing 9 (that's the final level number) levels with wall-jump in mind and find out that I have to restart development completely cause the wall-jump just doesn't work out. So I'm keeping it simple this time around.
I think where the game is really going to be gold is not in innovation and crazy new features. See, I think the industry is spending too much time 'pushing the boundries of technology' and not delivering quality gameplay. We don't need to spend more time trying to 'push the boundries to discover new gameplay elements that will change the way we see videogaming forever' because we already have more than enough great technology and more then perfect capacity to create great games. That's what the industry needs; great games, no matter what they look like, play on, or how many polys you can render to the screen at once. Just great games, period.
So to make a long story short, instead of break a leg and gamble on gimmicky features (no matter how much I love sidescrollers with wall-jump) and hoping that they sell copies of the game, I'm just going to try to deliver great content in terms of visuals (a key factor for this game), sound, plot, and probably most of all, level design. And now that it's almost time to design levels so the team can compile the proper resources, I need to go into overtime.
Wish me luck!
(PS: Oh, more concept art tomorrow!)