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The Challenge - Competition

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Postby Duncan_B » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:52 am

If it's too buggy I won't enter it... I don't expect to win...

If you're a new writer and operating as a solo developer, bugs are practically an inevitability. You can't get too caught up on them (especially if you don't expect to win). Consider it practice and, if need be, just a first iteration of a project you can pick back up and refine later.

Besides, it doesn't look like there's too much competition for this one. There are at most... four others entering, if I'm reading this thread right? So you've got, like, a 25% chance to win. Just get something out there, 'ey?
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Postby MikeDesert » Fri Apr 08, 2011 5:44 am

I'm a little more confident after playing a recent winning game:

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(aside from that I like it so far...even though I still can't figure out how to get down to the basement)

But after that, and a few other bugs and GTV irritations I've come across in games lately, my question is: how perfect/finished should a game be? I mean, we're all hobbyists, not friggin infocom, right? so when's a good time to put the game out there and move on?
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Postby P/o Prune » Fri Apr 08, 2011 6:56 am

You release it when you feel it's worth releasing. As simple as that. You're so right that we are "only" hobbyists and definitely not professionels. Having said that, any player must be allowed to expect that you have gone through your game, not too many spelling and grammar errors. And a minimum of beta testing.
I can't say this strong enough. Beta, beta, beta! You need those sets of extra eyes to go through your game.
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Postby Campbell » Fri Apr 08, 2011 9:06 am

MikeDesert wrote:I'm a little more confident after playing a recent winning game:

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(aside from that I like it so far...even though I still can't figure out how to get down to the basement)

But after that, and a few other bugs and GTV irritations I've come across in games lately, my question is: how perfect/finished should a game be? I mean, we're all hobbyists, not friggin infocom, right? so when's a good time to put the game out there and move on?

I can't even think how that would be possible... :-/
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Postby P/o Prune » Fri Apr 08, 2011 10:02 am

When I saw your name here Campbell... I thought you were going to anounce that you were going to participate in "The Challenge" ;)
Why not give it a go?
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Postby David Whyld » Fri Apr 08, 2011 5:29 pm

MikeDesert wrote:I'm a little more confident after playing a recent winning game:

Image

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(aside from that I like it so far...even though I still can't figure out how to get down to the basement)

But after that, and a few other bugs and GTV irritations I've come across in games lately, my question is: how perfect/finished should a game be? I mean, we're all hobbyists, not friggin infocom, right? so when's a good time to put the game out there and move on?

I think you'll tend to find people here are more than willing to overlook errors in ADRIFT games for the simple reason that they're ADRIFT users. The same applies to other systems, of course. Head on over to the Quest forum sometime and check out the glowing reviews for games with misspelt words in the title that can’t even be finished because the writer messed up. If people like a system enough, your game can be the buggiest bug in bug town and they'll either pretend they never noticed the bugs or that they weren’t a big deal.

I played the games in the recent ADRIFT Summer Comps and found a few to be bugged to high heaven, yet I notice from reviews that no one else seems to have encountered any bugs. Hmmm... Which leads me to wonder if a) they even played the games, b) they chose to ignore the bugs because they were ADRIFT games and the reviewers are big fans of the system, or c) they didn't want to upset the authors.

Saying all that, the bug above is a pretty minor one in the scheme of things – just a case of an author not including an alias for an object – and doesn't render the game unfinishable or cause you more than a few seconds of bother. I wouldn't rate a game down for something like that.
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Postby Thingamus » Fri Apr 08, 2011 5:42 pm

Yea, in defence o' my SummerComp work, 'twas writ more like one o' ye olds Speed-IFs... a good ways to keepeth ye skills sharpe.

Indeed, tho', worry not about ye buggishness on ye first stroke, but maketh ye audiences eager to heareth ye stories. Also, many wrongnesses hath been corrected with a good hint system!
Released workes:
Yon Astounding Castle! of some sort: 11th place in Ye Olde IFComp '09 (2.5 stars!).
Pirate's Plunder!: 3rd place in ADRIFT Summer Comp (4 stars!).
Albert is Lost!: An Adventure in Real Life (2 stars!).
Newton (1 star!).
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Postby MikeDesert » Fri Apr 08, 2011 6:11 pm

Thanks folks... then I will definitely submit something for the Challenge! Play it with a can of Raid nearby...
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Postby Duncan_B » Fri Apr 08, 2011 6:57 pm

Aside from a hint system, one thing you could do that I know would at least facilitate my own playing of it (if it is buggy) would be to not put a password on it so I could refer to the source code if I get really stuck. It could also help in finishing if it is buggy in a way that would otherwise prevent finishing (if a certain task, say, should have been repeatable one can just find it and check it as needed).

Looking forward to your work!
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Postby MikeDesert » Fri Apr 08, 2011 8:42 pm

David Whyld wrote:I played the games in the recent ADRIFT Summer Comps and found a few to be bugged to high heaven, yet I notice from reviews that no one else seems to have encountered any bugs.

Your reviews were harsh and hilarious. I expect the same treatment if you ever review something I did!

Actually I'd find it hard t review stuff without knowing the age of the writer -obviously someone my age (38) should be held up to a higher standard than a 14 year old...
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Postby MikeDesert » Sat Apr 09, 2011 6:52 pm

This is what I'm trying to avoid in my game. Decided to play an old ADRIFT game today from The Delron ADRIFT Games List, and instantly got frustrated!

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but I'm sure my game will be far from perfect! ;)

far...
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Postby David Whyld » Sat Apr 09, 2011 6:57 pm

MikeDesert wrote:Actually I'd find it hard t review stuff without knowing the age of the writer -obviously someone my age (38) should be held up to a higher standard than a 14 year old...

I don't think age should be a relevant factor; a game ought to be judged on its own merits and not who wrote it.
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Postby P/o Prune » Sat Apr 09, 2011 8:01 pm

David Whyld wrote:
MikeDesert wrote:Actually I'd find it hard t review stuff without knowing the age of the writer -obviously someone my age (38) should be held up to a higher standard than a 14 year old...

I don't think age should be a relevant factor; a game ought to be judged on its own merits and not who wrote it.

I agree with you to a certain point.
However, I expect a better spelling and grammar from an American or English author then I would from someone whose native language isn't English.
There are text editors and they should be used. But they don't correct grammar or syntax for that matter.. (thinking of my own blunder calling the head of the UN, General Secretary whereas the correct term in English is Secretary General.) Or where to use don't or doesn't ...
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Postby Duncan_B » Sun Apr 10, 2011 6:35 am

without knowing the age of the author

Y'know, for as many reviewers as thought I was a teenager, The Ascot still managed to get nominated for an XYZZY... so I can't imagine age is so much a factor as maturity or whatever else.
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Postby rotter » Sun Apr 10, 2011 7:57 am

You might find that the spelling and grammar of a teenager are better than someone of advanced years.

Me grandma is terribold.

:(
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