Adarakion Developer Diary: Issue 23

Steadfast in my motivation to make this work. That’s been my motto all week as it seems countless obstacles have been strewn in my development path which I have been trying to dodge!

You know when people say “ah, yes, I might be a multi-millionaire but its hard work getting there”. I know exactly what they mean. Not being a multi-millionaire I hasten to add, in fact, not even being the smallest fraction of one, but the fact that it takes an extraordinary amount of commitment to try and do what we are trying to do.  More from a time perspective than anything else, I’m attempting to hold down a full time job, progress with my course, code Project Blast!, be a Dad and a Husband and also perhaps every now and again have a blast on a few games to “keep my hand in”.

I’m not moaning about what I’m doing, I feel very lucky to be in the position I’m in, one of potentially being able to break into the industry and actually earn enough money to make this a viable career.  I honestly believe that I’ve made more progress in getting there in the last 12 months than I have in the rest of my life and it is a hairs breadth away from becoming a reality.  Quite a big hairs breadth… I mean, imagine a giant with really thick hair – that sort of hair’s breadth size.

So anyway, where am I with the port?  Well, I’ve just finished off coding the ship selection sequence – I am getting a few link errors from variables I’ve accidentally declared twice – hopefully a quick fix to sort that.  Once I know that the actual code works I’m going to do a spot of reorganising and recoding.  The main menu (screenshot was attached a few issues ago) needs tidying up quite a bit – but I also want my ship selection screen to look similar to that – i.e. keep some consistency between menus. How I hope to achieve that is by making the menu drawing routine a function which I can feed in the various options and return the option currently selected, then, if the “select” button or key is pressed we can progress to the next stage, Sounds simple enough in concept doesn’t it, and whilst the actual implementation isn’t really that complicated I want to give it some thought before I jump into the coding so that whatever I do code actually makes sense and works efficiently.  Once I have this working how I see it in my head, the next stage is to work on the main fight engine.

To say this is going to be a time consuming task is really under emphasising the mammoth amounts of code I have to work on.  Admittedly the code contains a lot of stuff which I can cut or re-factor to make it less bloated, easier to follow and more efficient.  At the same time, in the first instance I need to get the code into C++, ensure it builds correctly, and then look at making it more efficient.  Once that stage is over and done with I just have a couple of extra small items of code to incorporate before I can start actually progressively developing again (and I tell you, I can’t wait to get back onto that. Porting can be quite satisfying but my, its time consuming and kind of boring)!

Other stuff that’s happening at the moment; Project 2 is still progressing with Liam being the main coder on this and the rest of us chipping in to assist as and when required, future project design work has begun and whilst we are a fair way off even contemplating the coding of Projects 3, 4 and 5 it’s a good feeling that we at least have plenty laid out for us to keep us busy.  All our planned projects are quite different to each other so we can explore various types of game design and development. Obviously being a small team means we can change and alter what we do quite quickly, so whilst we have stuff “in the pipeline”, being able to adapt what we are working on (or plan to) quite quickly is a great advantage to us in our current position.

So, to surmise, another real up and down sort of a week.  My focus on what we are aiming for has never faltered however and whilst at times it seems like the whole world is against us, I just need to realise its real life that gets in the way, and those who are successful in their endeavours find ways to manipulate these frustrations, “ride the wave” and find themselves in a more positive position at the other end.  We can most definitely win these battles…