Saturday, March 26, 2011

Three Guys, a Girl, and a Groundling Shop

It's been some time. Certainly far too long. I have no excuse other than laziness...and I've been distracted. Mostly laziness. ...No wait, I've actually been really busy. Between instructing courses in Game Studies/Development and working towards cert for a AAA title, I've been working on Gnome. Yes. Gnome. Actually, it is now known as ...

Oh! Gnomes!

I must say, Seth has been a life saver for this game. He has done all sorts of crazy things. Most importantly, he interfaced Unity (iOS and Android) with Facebook so that players will be able to post their scores to their walls. When he and I were developing it and we kept IMing scores back and forth to each other, it quickly became apparent that having such a feature would be absolutely necessary. He also made Gnome work via Augmented Reality. It is so much fun to play. Absolutely amazing. Unfortunately, we (meaning he) could never get the FPS to an appropriate level. The best I heard was anywhere between 20-25 FPS, which just isn't good enough. And to top it all off, he performed several user tests. We could figure out what worked and what didn't. In fact, we removed 2 gnomes from the list because of it. They just weren't fun.

And Karl stepped up to the plate for the team. He was busy working on Art assets for Ghost (splitting a small team is not recommended), but when I asked him for a little help, he modeled and animated the Groundling and environment. And in Blender no less. Invaluable.

Last but certainly not least, Denise, a programmer, looked at the team and said "We have enough programmers. I'll be an artist!" Ok. So maybe they weren't exactly those words, but the intent was certainly the same. She created the GUI assets, modeled and animated the gnomes, and had many valuable insights into Unity. This game could not have been made without her.

Why am I using the past tense for Gnome? Because the game is almost done. We are putting on the final touches and squashing those final bugs. In hindsight, I feel we should have written about the process while in the thick of it. But I guess that's the glory of hindsight. So yeah...