Ok, so, we (and I really mean me) made every mistake possible up until now. Choosing Nintendo as our target platform was just a silly idea that we put a lot more behind than we should have (it seemed to make sense at the time), and now when I work on the project I just can’t seem to muster the strength to complete the Windows port – Especially when I look at the support costs vs. earning potential on a platform like Steam vs. WiiWare. In addition to that, I no longer have Saturdays to focus on the project – and have recently started an awesome new job (I need to rewrite my Bio!). So, for now – life is busy and we’re going to have to shelve it.
In that vein, I need to talk to my other team members and find out if we want to do anything with the code / assets. Maybe we can make this open source, which should at least help others learn about homebrew development on the Wii. *sigh* It sucks to fail but it’s a great learning experience.
In the meantime, while we’re on hiatus from the currently-stillborn “Swim Fishy Swim” I thought I might write a few articles about some of the best ways to approach game development from an architectural perspective. Truth be told, I’ve learned good game design takes a lot more experience than I thought, so I won’t try to tackle any of the benefits of prototyping and level design here. However, what I thought might be a good exercise is to make a game that can be played from start to end in five minutes, and take any aspiring developers who want to go along for the ride through what I feel is the most effective software design life cycle for small to medium projects. Hopefully through this process I can improve my skills as a game designer too – that’ll make it a win-win for everyone involved :D.
What’s a software design life cycle, you say? It’s a methodology, that helps get rid of bugs/design flaws before you write even one tiny single little line of code (and a lot more fun than you would think)! If you haven’t been exposed to this kind of idea before, it might seem a little counter intuitive – but stick with me, a tool like this can have a huge impact on your life as a software developer! (I know it changed mine)
We’ll be using Unity for this adventure, something I wish I’d known about when I started Swim Fishy, and I’ll be uploading design documents as we go. I’m only giving myself thirty minutes a day (a small lunch break) to work on this, so it’ll be slow going (but hopefully not as slow as it has been, so take heart dear reader (if you exist))!
So, that’s my current plan to not-abandon green door games in the wake of our first big failure – I hope one or two of you people out in the world come along for the journey.