To say that things have changed would be an understatement so egregious that it would really undermine the actual meaning of the word “understatement.” It’s been *checks notes* five years…five years since I’ve written on this development diary, and there have been a wide assortment of things that have happened since the list time I opened up this small link into the greater digital world and shouted into the proverbial void.
First of all, let’s do a quick rundown of the things that your friendly neighborhood game designer got up to in the last few cycles, if you would all indulge me. After college finished and I found myself asking the big questions, like “Now what?” and I took a short job writing for an online game magazine. Well that turned into a very short project indeed, although it inspired me to start a company with friends that I went to college with, and the result was NitWitty Magazine. I can say without ego that the writing that I did on that site is some of the finest writing that I’ve ever gotten the chance to craft (I’m particularly fond of this one : The Rise and Fall of Comic-Con), and I can say within the confines of this development blog that it was probably the most terrifying and I daresay fun job that I’ve ever worked on, but eventually it ran its course.
But there I discovered something else – I’m a producer no matter where I go. It’s a little bit odd in a way. I’ve been leading projects for so long that now in almost any circumstance I wind up putting my “Producer” hat on – the one that I crafted like a chef’s toque through so many nights here at the Star Frog Games mothership. So the other job that I’ve worked I slowly but surely found myself in charge of leading people on IT and code projects. It seems no matter where I go or what I do I wind up working with artists and writing code. It’s something that doesn’t even feel weird anymore so long have I gotten used to these strange waters.
Oh, and I made a person. A tiny person who looks like this when he smiles :
And it’s weird, but he doesn’t ask for anything (since he can’t talk yet) but I want to give him things anyway. I want to show that if you work hard, and if you want to do something, it’s possible if you’re clever enough and you just don’t give up. So I guess what I’m saying is, I’m not ready to yet.
In the last 5 years I haven’t stopped developing games. Not by a long shot. I’ve created and designed several prototypes (the most heartbreaking was a ship combat game that involved hidden orders and had all of the ships actions happen simultaneously with different classes of ships with different capabilities. Then the core gameplay I’d built appeared through parallel design in Star Wars Armada– yeah that one hurt). But with a few exceptions there hasn’t been much to show. Either the rules didn’t pan out (the Shadow TCG) or the core game wasn’t promising (the gunslinger game I was developing).
Now I have something that I am happy to show. The short of it the exotic fusion of a drafting game, dungeon crawler, class based Co-Op. I have excitement. I have playtests, and soon, I’ll have a working design document to show on this very website. Oh, you thought that maybe just because it’s been a while that I was going to stop showing all of the nitty gritty behind the scenes stuff here at Star Frog HQ? Of course not. Next time, I’ll officially announce the project and then, just like in the old days, we’ll build it together.
-In Paper Zeppelin news – the game is actually, functionally, almost feature complete. Polished? No. Full of art? Nope. Multiplayer online? Not yet. Can you play it all the way from the beginning to the end with placeholder graphics without it crashing? You better believe it.
When will Paper Zeppelin be done? For that I do not know. Although I am going to try to put up a demo (even with placeholder art) up at some point in the near future.
…and though we are not that strength which in the old days moved Earth and Heaven, that which we are, we are.