Fate of Io
Oh Yea, Fate of Io...
2004/07/13 05:34:32 PDT by mystik3eb [0/43]
[mystik3eb's avatar]

I don't know why I decided to do this, but I guess a lack of activity has made me feel like a brainless zombie logging in everyday to simply go somewhere else after seeing an empty activity list.

I'm kinda confused as to why we keep saying to people and ourselves "we will work on it, someday, we're just busy now, we all have our own lives and priorities...this just isn't a high priority really." I realize this to be absolutely true, of course, knowing myself how easy it is to get distracted with anything at anytime of the year. Life does go on. However, I think I'd like to analyze why this project isn't important enough to all of us to actually have at least a group of people always working on (whether it's the same group of people or we rotate groups...something like that).

1. There's the obvious "I like this idea, it's cool, it's fun, it's intriguing, but there are other, more important things in my life than making a game. I'll give it my time when I can spare it" thought, which all of us have. For some of us (myself included) it took a while for that concept to sink in. Really, I support this whole-heartedly. None of us are getting paid to do any of this...many of us are losing money on this project (how I respect you). But does this mean that it should be all the way in the back of our heads? I don't think it should. Not ALL the way back, anyway. Think of this project, think of our goals for it. We want this game to be successful. We want it to be VERY quality, up to par with Warcraft and Zelda games (to the best of our ability, of course). Think of the possible attention from this success. Popular gaming magazines could have interviews of Dev and Temp as the main stories. We could receive so much attention and appreciation that hightens our success, having a little statement like "Assisted in creation of free computer game Fate of Io as ______________ position/contributer" may actually help you a LOT in the long run. Let's not forget this potential we have here to help each other and ourselves...and besides, there's nothing wrong with having another great game in the world.

2. I'm afraid many of us do see this as an impossible feat, and therefore show a lack of commitment and dedication because we see it as pointless and wasteful to give. We've lost some members, many are painful losses (who will be left unnamed). I'll admit, it is hard to believe that we could acheive such an awesome goal with naught but high school and college students, many of whom are incredibly unwise and inexperienced *points at self* as far as most of this material is concerned. My question as to turn heads: so what? Has anyone seen the movie Miracle recently? Was anyone ALIVE during that time? Well...my point is not that we should all hook up and play hockey, my point is that impossible things have happened with enough faith, work and dedication. I think we have awesome people involved in this project, and that we can have a sufficient supply of all those qualities should we choose to apply ourselves thus.

My biggest quesiton is: what ARE we waiting for? It doesn't appear like there really WILL be a time later on that will promise more open schedules for most (or any) of us, so we might as well try to find some way to get at least a certain amount of time in and work done on this project within a certain time period. I think we could, if we really wanted, put our heads together and try to make some consistent actions.

Something specific that I was just thinking of that could solve much of this problem: we could figure out how to finally work our newsletter, involving the leadership's input. This doesn't have to be all the time, but it should be at least monthly, with input from Dev, Temp and whoever else they deem worthy to put things in. This will be official FoI information, with a specific sender, time of sending, etc etc etc. Just an idea as to a way we could actively get people involved in the project by putting in things that need to be done, who to be done by, and all that jazz.

Well...that's my attempt at a motivational speech at 7:30 in the morning. Just a little info on me these days: I graduated from high school (barely, but I pushed it and made it through) and was accepted into BYU (which was a major schock with my GPA) where I'll attend starting september. Though I may not have the internet in my apartment there, they do have the internet in the library, and I'm sure I could help contribute in some of my free time. In fact, I will make a priority if enough of us do so to the point where getting myself involved will actually be a good way to spend my free time (which I'll have little of, let me tell you now). I spent the first two weeks of June back in Cali, and had a blast. I'm currently visiting family up in NH and will be here for the next couple weeks. I return to Utah (to who knows where right now, hehe, still figuring that out) the beginning of August and, as I said, begin school the last day or two of August. In BYU, I will be majoring in Computer Science and minoring in music (at LEAST a minor), so I will be enhancing my skills to help us out in both those areas.

Ok...hope to hear from everyone! I hate when it gets too quiet like this and I always have a feeling there's something I can do about it...maybe this will help.

2004/07/13 14:17:57 PDT by Dev [manager]
[Dev's avatar]

Good to see you're still alive, Mystik. Good luck with the college thing; starting out can be kind of harrowing but you'll hopefully have lots of fun.

To answer one of your questions: yes, actually, I believe there is something we're waiting for. I'm not sure I want to get more specific without discussing it with Temp, but he and I have had our own conversations about where to take the project next.

"Take it?" Well, yeah. Don't forget that above all else, the Fate of Io project is a big experiment--albeit one that I never really want to give up on. If one project model doesn't work, we're still learning, still making progress (in one direction or another, but still progress), and it lets us know what changes we might need to make.

This is not to say, Mystik, that your suggestions are moot points--hardly. There are things we could be doing now, such as employing our newsletter feature, to start rolling again. But to me, it doesn't make much sense to give the Project a jump start and then soon after change the equation entirely; that might only confuse people who are returning to a very large, complex, and changing project. Insofar as it will take us some time to fully realize and implement those changes, all I can really suggest is that current members be patient--and of course, that doesn't mean you can't continue work in some area if you want to. But such patience is something, Mystik, I know you have after so much time on the project, as it would behoove any member to have while we're considering and constructing a new phase of the experiment.

2004/07/13 17:11:09 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]

As Dev said, big changes are in the works. An e-mail will go out to everyone who has checked the "Notify me of important events." box in their profile when it happens.

The problem is these big changes require a whole lot of work, and it's hard for me to predict how long the work will take. You can blame Blizzard for any delays. :P However, I pretty much have to have it done by the end of October at the very latest. I'm hoping it will be sooner than that, though.

2004/07/16 08:56:00 PDT by mystik3eb [0/43]
[mystik3eb's avatar]

I'm certaintly relieved to see that you guys are still involved (Blizzard-ed or not =) ). I want you to know that I'm here and open to your commands and will do whatever I can to help, whenever you need it, whatever you ask of me, I'll try to do my best to fulfil your desires. I have hopes for this project, and I don't plan on giving up on it either. There will be a two-year break in my future because of my mission, but once I get back, I'll be right back open to helping out...it's just gonna suck how far behind I'll have fallen o_O

About the newsletter: if you would like, I would like to help personally with this, maybe with the organizing and sending of it or whatever. If you need any help with this, the newsletter is something I would like to see come alive. It will definetely help me when I come back after two years of being away on a mission (since so much activity will have happened that I won't see most of it when I log on after coming home), and I think it would be nice for everyone to know what's happening, what needs work now, and what's in the future of planning/doing. Whatever you want to do with this, I'm willing (and honestly, eagar) to help.

Speaking of which...what are some of the things that still need contribution work or whatever around here? In the Story section specifically, I guess, since that's where we need the most work done at this point, right? I know it's probably been said a long time ago what needed to be done next, but as I said, that was a long time ago. I personally could use a reminder of the sections that need reviewing or comments. Back then when loads of work was last being done and things were happening, I was a little busy and preoccupied by what life had thrown at me to really spend time helping out. This I regret. So now I ask: what can be done right now that won't interfere with whatever major changes you guys are thinking up right now?

Glad to see you're both still alive, too. At least there's three of us =)

2004/07/16 18:18:49 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]

I think right this minute is probably a bad time to be working on stuff, as we're about to totally reorganize in the near future. If there's something you can do to help the reorganization I'll let you know, though.

2004/07/19 12:44:40 PDT by Morpheus [0/5]

Whoot, sounds like something big... well bigger than normal is in the works.

2004/07/20 20:25:16 PDT by LockePick [0/0]

Still kicking, I see... ;)
Been so long since I thought of FoI that I hardly even expected the site to be here, let alone to see major changes being planned.

But that's how it always was.

I'll wish you good luck with your miracle work, although I do feel sorry for this poor horse.

2005/04/26 09:03:56 PDT by MorbidChylde [0/0]

"The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." - Lao Tzu

The problem with projects on the back burner is that after a while they stagnate, and the enthusiasm eventually dies (and with it, so does the project). I know this project may have been going for quite some time, but the one I recently left was going on for 3 years before everyone jumped ship. I'd really like to be a part of this, but from the looks of the dates in the forum posts and whatnot I don't really know what to expect of it in terms of longevity. I am willing to take the chance, however.

The thing is, to really have the project see fruitation, routine cycles of contribution and effort need to be made. I watched many community games flop in my time as an administrator of a game-making forum because the more people lost interest, the harder it became for anyone else to take interest. Eventually everyone lost their interest in the projects altogether, and gave up.

What I think you'd need for this project is set intervals in which core members contribute to the project, just to give it enough activity that the average passerby (like myself) might take more of an interest in the project (that is, they see that the project is active and that their efforts will be worthwhile).

There also needs to be a certain amount of seriousness in the project. While I respect the "contribute as you please" approach to it, the problem is this sort of leisure creates too many gaps in activity, and it is within these gaps that the interest in the project will wane. This project looks to have been going on for years, but realisticly you've not got a whole lot in terms of solid resources (graphics, story, music, etc) and you've not even specified *how* the game will be made (i.e. what engine will be used, what language, etc). You need to at least have a handful of people who are spurring the project on at the very least 2 or 3 times a week, if not to just keep interest in the project going, as well as to give it a real sense of progress.

If I seem to be griping or lecturing, I appologize. That is not my intention, I am just trying to make suggestions here and point out what I've learned from past experiences. I'd really like to be apart of this project, and I'd really like to see this project take off.

2005/04/26 10:19:39 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]

Thanks for the suggestions... but, frankly, we already know. If I had the time an inclination, I'm sure I could keep this project quite active. I just... well, don't, most of the time. I run several other projects and will soon have a job, and FoI is sort of low-priority.

That said, we recently revamped the web site and are planning a "re-launch" of the project Real Soon Now (in a week or two? Dev? What's your schedule?). We hope for a lot more activity at that time, and hope to sustain it longer than we have in the past.

2005/04/26 10:41:55 PDT by Dev [manager]
[Dev's avatar]

Part of me wants to say "Well FoI has been around for four years, so there!" ... but that would be immature. ::ahem:: Anyway, it's true that the site revamp has brought with it significant changes in the way this project is run; it may not seem like it if you're coming in now, but I think there's a lot more "seriousness" ingrained in the new system.

As for resources... this has been an ongoing dilemma ever since the, uh ... pachydermic predicament. There actually is a wealth of concept art and music that simply isn't anywhere online at the moment, since those files were submitted prior to the enstatement of our Terms of Service. And the four-part story as you see it now is the current result of years of brainstorming, revision, and re-revision. So I'll have to humbly disagree when you say there's not "a whole lot"--but that's besides the point. Temp and I need to figure out what to do with those old files.

I'm currently about to graduate from college, which is a very ... interesting state to be in. A frantic, panicked, hopefully ephemeral state. Since most of my big projects are due before finals week, I think we should set the relaunch at, say, a week from Thursday or so.

2005/04/26 10:50:21 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]
Quote from Dev:

pachydermic predicament

::ROFL::

My take on the old art is... We don't really need it. There was a lot of it, yes, but most of it was just random drawings that didn't fit anywhere in particular. If we get the kind of attention back to the site that we've had in the past, we should be able to produce new art fast enough.

Quote from Dev:

I think we should set the relaunch at, say, a week from Thursday or so.

Got it.

2005/04/26 14:50:01 PDT by MorbidChylde [0/0]

Please don't misunderstand, when I say you do have a lot of resources, I mean in terms of how many are needed for the project in general. Yes you have alot (story-wise) done here, but only that's only a portion of the project. In any case, my post was not an attempt to put-down your work, my post was an attempt to figure out where you plan on going with the project, and if it's something that you actually plan on seeing through or if it's just a nice idea that will fade in time. As for what I can do for the project, I have the following skills:

*Hand-Drawn Art/Character Concepting
*Tiles/Map-making
*Spriting
*Writting/Story Concepting
*Programming (Depending on what's used)

I could say that I'd do some graphics (some tiles I did can be seen here: http://www.morbidgrafix.com/artwork/tiles.JPG though the jpg format killed them) but I mainly do 2D stuff, and I don't even know what you are making the game with or what kind of engine you are using... LoL I think that's the first step really, once you have an idea of what kind of engine you will use it will be easier for people to know what kind of resources to submit. In any case, if you'd like to discuss any of this over MSN Messenger, feel free to contact me via [email protected]

Added at 2005/04/26 14:51:24 PDT

EDIT: That should read "Please don't misunderstand, when I say you do NOT have a lot of resources..." LoL Hookt un fonix didint werkt fer mi...

2005/04/26 15:29:28 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]

No one is misunderstanding. Dev is just being silly. You're right... what we have so far is only a small fraction of a complete game.

As for the engine... If I write the engine, it will be 3D. It will be written in my programming language, Evlan. Evlan has a way to go before being able to support a 3D engine, though. Otherwise, if someone else wants to lead a team to actually code FoI, they can present their plan and we'll consider it. But, I would not be leading the coding in that case.

2005/04/26 22:24:01 PDT by MorbidChylde [0/0]

I checked out Evlan, it's a bit different from what I normally work with, but I've got the syntax down (as most of that is very familiar to me) and the basic structure, I believe. Given time I could learn to work with it, I'm sure (should the need for extra coders arise). I've worked with some 3D apps before, so I am pretty sure I could adapt to a 3D engine, if that's what's used. I am good at making textures/skins, so perhaps I could help out in that department if need be. Just figure out what you'd like to do, and how you'd like to go about it and I'll do what I can to help out as much as I can. :)

2005/04/27 16:24:30 PDT by Captain Vimes [0/13]

The topic has meandered a bit, but I also would like to chip in the note that I'm alive and well. The convergence of two fairly major school projects (as well as the opening of Step 13 (by the way, thanks for hosting it Temp).
I'm also scounting out various indie games to write about, so that combined with my inherent slackardlyness prevented me from really reworking that level design.

Oh, and I think Mystick deserved a few points for making this topic :p.

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