For Midnight!

battle_full

For Midnight! For Midnight and the Free!
Hear me, Shareth Heartstealer;
we ride to tear the Frozen Empire asunder!


 
It’s with a heavy heart that I write this. While working on Doomdark’s Revenge this eve, I had to accept the cold realities, and admit to myself that it is very unlikely that I can make a Christmas release.

It’s not that the game is very far from finished, it’s almost there. It’s just that there are so many things going against me at the moment. I had hoped to upload a test version to Testflight at the weekend, that never happened due to spending time with my parents. I’m working away at the moment, so I get nothing done at the weekends. Having been away all week, it’s important to catch up with the family. I couldn’t build a test version on Monday because I left the licence locked on my home machine.

This time last year, Lords of Midnight was in test and I was still working from about 6pm till 2am every night including weekends. At the moment, because I’m working away and in a new contract, I can only manage about 4 hours a night.

The real issue is testing. Apple close down over the christmas period, which means I have to release on the App store on 20th at the latest. That means submitting a good week before. That would be Friday the 13th. Now I’m not a superstitious person, but I will be driving home for 4 hours that evening. Therefore it must be done by the 12th. And that is exactly one week away. That means I must put a version into test this weekend, and at best it will get a couple of days testing… I think all of you who know the difference between Doomdark’s Revenge and The Lords of Midnight, can see that that just wouldn’t be wise. I’m pretty sure that most of the UI stuff would go through test, and the little bits that turned up could be resolved in that time, but the AI?

I would have to work all this weekend in order to make sure that all the AI code is indeed finished. I think it’s pretty much done. I haven’t tested through all aspects yet. I spent this evening watching Lords wander around on the map. But they have battle’s to fight ( not written ), objects to pickup, Lords to recruit…

If I did submit on 12th or 13th, I would have no chance to remedy any last minute hiccups, and then I couldn’t fix anything on an Apple Device until the New Year anyway because of Apple’s closure.

I need to make a final definitive list of all the areas that need finishing off. They might just be little things, like a bug I’ve noticed on the overview map screen, but they might be a little bigger, like the fact that I haven’t coded any of the win/lose conditions, let alone tested them.

GoG can’t release the Windows Version until the New Year due to time constraints, and even if I could finish the game, I’m not currently able to build the final OSX version due to a problem with the Marmalade SDK. Added to that, I haven’t done any real device testing other than loading onto the iPad.

Then I’ve got the Website to build… PR to do… a trailer to make… the Manual to finish…. Stores to decorate…

Just typing this is exhausting me! 🙂

In all my time in development, there is nothing in the above that says anything other than… “Don’t Go”. The only reason to launch, would because I said that it should be ready for the Winter Solstice.

So here is what I will do. I will continue all guns a blazing to get this finished as soon as possible. I will attempt to get a test version on Testflight this weekend. This gives me two weeks of testing to iron out as much as possible. I will then aim to release an official BETA on the 21st ( Winter Solstice ) – on all formats. The Apple devices will be covered by Testflight. I will let you register one device on there for testing, in order to give as many people as possible a chance to play the iOS version. ( I only get 100 testing slots from Apple ). The Android devices will be covered by Google Beta on Google Play ( I think! ). And Windows, OSX, and Blackberry will be on this site.

That way, many of you who have been following this release closely can get the chance, if you so wish, to play a pretty final, if not an actual final version, before release. Hopefully, that will also mean the game gets a good testing over the Christmas break, and I can do an all formats release early in the New Year.

Chris

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23 thoughts on “For Midnight!

  1. I think most people would agree it should be released when it’s finished! If there’s a delay it’s with the best intentions in mind!

  2. Don’t push it. I think all the indie devs who follow this know how much effort is required to get these kind of games together. I would ease up on the development and PR prep until after christmas. They’ll be lots more people with shiny new ipads and things after then.

    Anyway, Doomdark’s revenge was not set to start at the Solstice? wasn’t it sometime in the first spring Midnight had seen for many moons?

  3. I’m really looking forward to this and I will be disappointed not to get it for the Christmas holidays. Two weeks off to play Doomdark just like I had two weeks to play LoM last year would’ve been awesome! But, I agree with the above comments about releasing it when it’s ready 🙂 I’ll just have to be a bit more patient.

  4. i’m looking forward to this release so much, another few weeks won’t make much difference. at least we get the beta to test. good luck with it all, chris

  5. Speaking for myself, I’ve waited this long, I can wait for a few more weeks .

    Having said that, can’t wait to play it!

    As someone who downloaded the PC Doomdark in 1998 and finally beat Shareth in 1999 (couldn’t do it in 85) can I just say Well done and thanks for this quest… Lot of water under the bridge since then…

  6. I’d rather later and ready than sooner and buggy. Spend some time with your family, Chris.

  7. Family is always more important – I can wait, we can all wait happily; we know it is on it’s way and that you’re doing everything you can!

    …and a Merry Christmas to you and them all!

  8. I agree with Christian, family is so important, and after spending last Christmas focusing so much on Lords, you really need, and deserve a break over this time. As you say, if you put it out now, it could all go pear with the AI after a couple of tries, so it really isn’t worth putting yourself through this for the Solstice. Any fan knows how much you’ve gone through to get this far and will definitely understand. On that note, all the best Christmas wishes to you and your family.

  9. Good things come to those who wait! Im sure luxor, tarithel and rothron will be too hung over on anvulane mead to fight the icelords. Much rest and xmas cheer will ensure a more hearty approach in the void between xmas and spring. Keep up the good work and merry xmas.

  10. I want to echo the comments of everyone here. We all appreciate the efforts you’ve gone to get this released and I for one and happy to wait a while longer for the final version. All the best.

  11. Good to hear about the progress, but do yourself a favour and have a decent Christmas break 🙂

    Merry Christmas to you Chris and your long suffering family.

  12. Hi Chris

    Whilst I admit to checking this site for updates and the App Store eagerly awaiting DoomDark’s Revenge as so many are,I know at worst it should be just a few weeks away.
    The main thing Chris, is that you don’t burn yourself out try to accomplish so much in so little time.
    We all know that you are loyal to the series as you have been for the last 20 and more years and will see justice done for this realise and subsequent releases.
    Take care Merry Christmas and
    Happy New Year.

  13. I’ll just echo what the rest have said Chris, ease up, recharge the batteries and wait until the New Year for a release. After all, it’ll give you time to work out how to get it on the XBox One! ;o)

    Have fun.

    Cheers

    Charlie

  14. Still super pumped to see this come out. I know you’re working a labour of love and I think everyone really appreciates that Chris!

    While I would love to play DR today, don’t kill yourself or “cancel Christmas” trying to get this done. I can’t thank you enough for bringing these games back to life on a new format like the iPad.

  15. As others have said, don’t go blazing guns on working frantically to hit those self imposed deadlines. I’d rather wait just that bit longer knowing that a) it’s a more polish and tested product that’s released and b) you’ve managed to have a decent Christmas break with a bit of down time to enjoy time with F&F, replenish those energy levels and (importantly) kept your sanity 😉

  16. Soooo looking forward to DDR on my iphone.
    Will be well worth the wait!!
    Your doing a fine job Chris.

  17. I’m really looking forward to the release, but don’t overwork yourself. Give yourself some break and don’t press the matter. I (and I think we all) know you are doing a fantastic job with your remake and so I have absolutely no problem waiting a little longer.
    I wish you all a good new year!

  18. Totally agree with the others, I’m really looking forward to DR after playing the new LOM. One of the biggest problems with DR was the huge number of characters you had to walk around seperately, that’ll be much easier with the new engine. But still, take your time and get it right first.

    Where should I be looking for the release? I wanna make sure I get it the day it’s released 🙂

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