XCOMRL

Disaster Averted

by Kyzrati on 20130316 , under

So this "dark cloud" previously mentioned, the one that was threatening to hinder development in a big way (= stop it for a year), has thankfully dispersed! I'll still have to be away for a couple weeks next month dealing with related matters, but once that's done nothing will stand in our way!

Okay, maybe there is another little cloud brewing out there, just about the only other thing that could get in the way... like the funds to continue at a good pace.

To date I've put all my own money (+= lots and lots of time) into this project, but it just so happens that my current sources of income are drying up in a few months and rather than looking for more of the same type of work I've been considering using the opportunity to try something different. I'd love for that to be game development, but X@COM is probably not something that can really make money, and working on an alternative simpler game would essentially mean putting this project on hold, which we obviously don't want. So after a few months development may start to slow down depending on how the money situation develops.

I may open up the project to donations and see how that goes--who knows, maybe we'd be surprised. Given that the game is generally well-received, a full-on crowd-funding campaign (assuming the necessary re-branding of the content) would almost certainly be successful enough to work full time long enough to bring the project to completion, but non-U.S. citizens can't use Kickstarter which is still the only truly viable platform these days (barring a few exceptional projects), making that a non-starter for me.

We'll see what happens. For now it's back to regular development and we'll see about getting R9 out there before I have to take that short leave.

Progress: I'm still expanding the sound system, which is now almost complete and includes some great stuff, but I'll save the juicy details for another post when everything's in place.
5 comments more...

5 comments

  • Anonymous

    I'm sorry to hear that you seem to be struggling. X@COM is one of the most exciting free-software projects I've seen in a while, and I really, really appreciate what you've done so far. That said, of course, it would really be a shame to see you have to stop.

    Do what's right for you, naturally. Just know that there are those out here who are pulling for you.

  • Kyzrati

    Thanks. To clarify, at this point I see no reason the project would *ever* stop, so rest at ease knowing that. (I know I do!) However, a change of pace is seemingly unavoidable and as such can only go one of two ways: faster or slower, the former being predicated on some form of direct funding, the latter a result of me having to spend my time doing other work.

    I think this is important to bring up precisely because there are a good number of people who are interested, like yourself.

    It would have been easy to work on this project for free as a student, or even in the many carefree years following those, but things change once you have a family.

    What do you and others think about making the game NON-free?
    As in, I will change the content to be my own (with of course plenty of input from supporters once there's a full forum to host discussion) so that it can be sold legally. Of course it would still be about defending Earth from aliens, in the same way Xenonauts has taken the concept and mechanics and re-used them commercially, and the engine will still support a vanilla X-COM mod assuming someone puts one together. Some people who have e-mailed me or are active modders already know about this potential direction, but I've yet to officially announce it anywhere.

    I would prefer to develop the game as completely free software and fund development time on donations alone, which may also be a viable option at a later point once the game reaches a more mature state.

    The alternative is to really slow everything down to the unhappy speed of a purely spare-time-only hobby project, in which case it could take quite a while to finish (and obviously subject it to the inherent dangers of dragging out any given project for too long).

    I'm not sure how many people will be coming back and reading the comments on this old post, so I should probably bring this up later on as well.

    [FYI: The whole thing that prompted this post in the first place was me learning that I avoided a year of compulsory military service (a.k.a. "the draft"), which would otherwise have been be a rather large obstacle in the roadmap. Yay! This has understandably changed my near-term plans quite a bit.]

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