Another day off, a little more getting done. Not much to say on The Demon’s Guardian, since it’s just a basic planning phase for now. As you might expect, I’m still way more focused on Dungeon University.
Actually, though, it’s mostly cleaning up. I discovered a bug where the partners wouldn’t update, fixed it, then set out to just make everything look nicer. I also got rid of the “skill study” system from before, since it won’t be used anymore.
The real bulk of the work right now is actually in a much more familiar domain: writing. The game needs a little bit of intro just to make sense, although this version probably won’t have actual story beyond that. But how can I show off the support conversations without actual conversations? So, I decided that I’m going to include at least the first two or three scenes of each pair. That amounts to 18 short scripts that I have to write, followed by the fun of inputting them to the game system.
It’s kind of weird, really. I’ve been programming all this time, and now suddenly I’m back to something that feels way more… design-y. I haven’t decided on what enemies would be best for this, or exactly what special skills each character (or pair) should have. From here on out, I have a lot of content-based decisions to make, and quite a bit of busywork to get it into the game. Maybe it’s good that some of the hard parts are done?
From left to right, Sam, Ziziere, Mikard, and Chromia. Oh, and a slime in the background.
So today I finally had a day off where I wasn’t busy or sick or anything. It’s very much been a good thing, because I was worried that I could never catch up to my goals in time. Lo and behold, a productive day!
Dungeon University has been the main focus. As mentioned before, I set it up so that the pairs give each other major bonuses, including special “Pair Burst” attacks. Basically, each pair has a set of points (which don’t have a meter yet because it’s tricky), and either character can use those points to trigger a really powerful skill unique to that pairing. Surprisingly, a system like this wasn’t really out there in the wild yet, so I had to use some cleverness to hack together a solution. Suffice to say, I’ve got a way so that one of those attacks, at least, works!
My other time was used to take notes on The Third Face. I’ve been rereading it for a couple of weeks, and now it was time to put down the thoughts and details that I noticed. You’d be surprised at how much I managed to forget! It’s a good thing I found it, though, because there are probably enough loose ends here to fill another whole book, even if I didn’t introduce much new stuff. But I do have new stuff to introduce, so that’s why there are two more books, not to mention the fact that entries tend to get longer as a series goes on. Hopefully this means that The Demon’s Guardian will be relatively easy to write, once I get down to it.
Overall, I am probably being really optimistic right now on both fronts, but for a guy that’s always worried about doing well enough and whether I’ll ever finish, that is a really good thing. Now let’s hope that my house and wedding plans are as cooperative!
So, Zendone turned out to not have a free version at all–once the free trial was over, it kicked me out right away. I suppose I could have paid to keep using it, but after it did that to me, I wasn’t very happy. But, after a little transfer work, I have moved on to Remember the Milk, which I know will offer me a lot more for free.
On a higher level, I’m trying to focus on four main projects:
- Helping Shelby to get our wedding in order, as the clock ticks toward it.
- Doing the whole huge “collecting” activity of GTD, which, I hope, will end in also getting the house cleaned up.
- Working on Dungeon University, so this smaller version can (with a lot of luck!) hopefully come out some time in April.
- Preparing to write a brand new “first” draft of The Demon’s Guardian, the next book in my series.
But the funny thing about GTD, and the version of it I’m employing in Remember the Milk, is that it’s really not about the big goals. It’s all about the little pieces, the single steps you can knock out in a few minutes, and how they fit together with all the other things you can possibly be doing.
The gist is that as long as I’m doing something worthwhile with my time, and not just sitting there deciding what to do, I’ll make progress. And guess what? This blog post was me doing something. So at least I can say this works some. Here’s hoping I don’t soon get tired of it, let it die, and try the next one that comes along.
Sorry I haven’t updated lately, folks. I’ve been quite sick, so no progress to speak of. I’m getting better, though, so I’ll have to pick up where we left off.
Time is rushing by faster than I can think. The Dungeon University prototype is set to be in full swing now, with the features basically ready at the end of the month. I’m also in the process of rereading The Third Face so I remember it well enough to actually write a sequel at all!
My newest productivity experiment is with Zendone. It uses the Get Things Done (GTD) model, which basically means that I had to find everything that could be on my mind to worry about, write it down, and sort it into things that I can do right now. I actually don’t feel very confident that I got everything, but there is already less stress.
Okay, this hasn’t been a very focused post, but sometimes I just want to have an update. This blog doesn’t get too much attention.