So, we have now had the official Total Monkery Meeting O’ January Doom and Gloom. Conclusions? Starting a business is hard, yo.
In summary: we’ve been working on Iliara with the intention to get to release as quickly as possible. But it has become obvious that ‘as quickly as possible’ is kind of going to be a long time if we’re going to get it to the standard our honour demands. And we would be crazy crazy bad businesspeople if we focused upon it as our only hope for success.
Which, of course, we’re not. Quite apart from the Sekrit Project, which will be keeping us in coffee and noodles (and be a crazy awesome bit of tech…) we’ve had lots of other projects in development. Especially since we want to work with other indies and cool people that we know and love and help make Plymouth a hotbed of creative indie game development and all that. One such project is MagNets, which we had epic fun plans for if we won the Sony competition, and indeed still do if we get another funding opportunity. However, we didn’t – so it’s time to reshuffle schedules and see what we can practically do. Which means Iliara is on the back burner, much to our collective sulking. And MagNets is on hold subject to funding.
Enter Mini MagNets…
Mini MagNets is the core gameplay of MagNets – capturing pesky bots with your magnetic net. It was the intention to release mini-magnets as a more phoneworthy version of MagNets, but now it will serve more as an introduction. And, of course, a solid basis from which we can develop MagNets. Date of release TBA, but we’ve had a prototype running for a while so anticipate soon.
Of course, we’re very excited; with Richard busy, this is our thing. This is the youngsters’ project. And dammitall, we are going to make it the most shiny awesome compulsive bot-collecting game ever.
And almost certainly it will be free, so there’s that.
As for Iliara, I think that it is a game that will stand or fall based on the community it inspires, and that we ought to be putting it to the community sooner rather than later. It worked for Notch! (And with that, I think I win Indie Start-up Bingo.)
I got as much derision as I was due for saying that in the office, but I was talking sociology not aiming for stratospheric flukey success. Simply put, I think the thing that will make Iliara great is people doing crazy things with the level editor. Much like what makes The Sims great is the mod that turns your house into a strip club. And I wanna be encouraging that.
Er… not the strip clubs. You know what I mean.
Richard, however, seemed less keen. And by less keen, I mean a grey pallor passed over his face at my words. Perhaps when we finish the move to Unity? Perhaps over Richard’s cold, dead body? Only time will tell.