24 April 2011

Feature Complete

I keep looking at the To Do list, and it looks like all features will be implemented very soon (perhaps even today), with the exception of the manual. There are tasks that need to be done before release (such as update the FAQ to reflect the new version), and bugs that should be addressed, but it looks like everything I currently plan to do is done.

Of course, I could be overlooking something. And that’s why I’d like to accept a small number of testers. (It needs to be small in part because Apple restricts development to 100 devices.) The ideal tester:
  • Has not played before (OK, that probably leaves out most readers).
  • Has an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad capable of running iOS 4.1 or higher.
  • Is willing to use prerelease software. The game may crash, be impossible to win, or have other bugs. Saved games may not be loadable by future test builds.
  • Is good about noticing things that seem odd, and then reporting them.
  • Reports them to us! The game isn’t under NDA, but there’s not much value in blog posts that an unreleased game has bugs.
  • Has access to WiFi (you’ll download the game on your device, and it’s about 62 MB with overly compressed artwork).
  • Volunteers. Apple also restricts promo codes, and reviewers and other marketing needs will come first.
If you’re interested, send an e-mail to bugz |at| a-sharp.com. Please include the type of device you have and its UDID.
To get your device ID:
  1. Launch iTunes on your computer
  2. Connect the device
  3. Click the device in the DEVICES list on the left
  4. Click the Serial Number (to show UDID)
  5. Select Edit > Copy (to get the UDID on the clipboard)
Thanks for your help!

03 April 2011

Status Update

It’s been about a month since I discussed the state of the project. It’s getting much closer to feature complete.

We’ve recently added a bunch of new interactive scenes, 24 in all. These are all coded and tested to a reasonable level (I doubt I’m as thorough as Rob Heinsoo and Brian Campbell were). We’ve got vague ideas for more, but nothing in the pipeline at the moment.

One of the new scenes involved a new treasure, and I figured if I was going to the working of adding one, I might as well add seven. While they can all show up, they don’t all have effects yet.

There are currently 45 different achievements (I may delete one); 41 are implemented.

We continue to improve advice and fix bugs.

With the iOS sandbox, we can’t just ask testers to send me their saved game. So I added some testing infrastructure to do this. It’s really simple with iOS, an example of how far operating systems have come in the past 11 years.

I’ve started retuning the game to be easier (or perhaps less frustrating). The basic game design means it should be possible to lose, but hopefully a greater percentage of the losses will be dramatic rather than slow and tedious.

One thing I’m pleased to note: the game seems to work well on a small screen. Sometimes the limited real estate does cause problems, but there don’t seem to be any major issues.