Welcome to what I plan to be the final column of Tech Tree. The BYOND site will soon be redesigned and, while guilds will still be available, I think my efforts would be best spent site-wide. Fugsnarf appears to be planning a schedule for BYOND Weekly, but I have a different style and some years of experience that might still be of use. I've turtled long enough with open standards and regular content. It's time to expand.
Congratulations to Starcraft analyst/commentator Sean "Day" Plott. He is PC Gamer UK's Gamer of the Year! Frell yeah! Funday Mondays are the only time I laugh anymore.
I tend to run a little behind in my podcasts, but I recommend listening to episode 7 of Infinite Ammo. Alec Holowka and Derek Yu celebrated the third anniversary of Aquaria, but the most interesting bit might be about what it's like trying to run TIGSource.
I'm still handling BYOND's Facebook page. Developers, please polish your work to get it featured! I don't like constantly linking to the same game or two, but it's the only material available. I will be pushing for open standards across the site.
Last I knew, Acebloke was planning on releasing a bunch of updates before the end of the year. The next version of his featured abstract board game, Exploder, should have been available by Saturday. The next version of his military/economic sim, Wargames, should be out today. And there's five more... Unfortunately, I have yet to see anything released.
What has been released is news of the prizes for this year's AceMedalTable. The top three will gain short subscriptions to Acebloke's projects. Pre-release access to the Spore-inspired graphical MUD Dreamland is also on the menu. Along with the prizes, a poll is being held to help determine whether to allow players to purchase access early (sort of like Minecraft).
Tsfreaks has posted his year in review for 2010. His small RTS, MRTS, remains less than half finished and is unlikely to be continued due to the amount of moving parts and lack of a perceived audience. His turn-based Hexwar, however, could still see a release.
Of course, there are plenty of other projects included in his review and some are much more successful. However, passing up the chance to appear strategy-biased in the final Tech Tree seems like sacrilege. MUHUHAHAHA!
Mecha Destroyer JD hosted a test session for Ultra Strife. He doesn't appear to be thrilled with the results, but he manged to uncover some gamebreaking bugs. I figure that's what testing is for. He's currently keeping a new project close to his chest and thinking of entering a contest.
Last announced in October, Twin II is back to work on his tactical RPG engine. Along with a couple new screenshots, he describes some animations and the difficulties of arranging art for an isometric perspective.
Thejackalofevil is looking for programmers, designers and artists to help create a tactical RPG with the working title Celestial Battlefields. Players will collect units, gear perks and abilities with persistent upgrades. Compensation is up in the air. TheJackalofevil will be focusing on promotion and management. My hopes for the project are low after considering those factors, but perhaps the ability to help define the mechanics will tempt someone.
I've announced The Gift Me Games Deal for lifetime Fooldom Come subscriptions. Fooldom Come is my passport for benefits in my current and future projects. A lifetime subscription currently costs $20, but you can get one for the key (username) of your choice just by gifting me a game from my Steam wishlist. The offer ends on my birthday, February 2nd.
The most recent addition to Fooldom Come is my award-winning (watch me run that into the ground) rhythm action game with procedurally generated music. As of version 4, Fused Finale has added level selection and score records for subscribers. There have also been a plethora of tweaks to improve the pacing. Songs begin with shorter durations and the durations of later songs increase much more slowly. Meanwhile, those who are good enough to keep earning extra life bars can trade them for score multipliers.
I'll be back to implementing my racing combat board game, StarScurrier, soon. I've been thinking of adding sound effects just to ease myself into it.
Got news? Post it! I don't know where I'll start the next column, but the new site's moderator options should help make developer updates easier to find.