After reading many e-mails, after much thought, I've come to the
following conclusions about the future of Mysteries of the Ancients.
First, while many of you said you would enjoy an FPS type title you also
said that you like the game as it currently is. Even those who were
hoping for perhaps a more traditional 80's type side-scroller admitted
they could except Mysteries of the Ancients as it is as long as I would
not convert it to a full blown FPS. This is the kind of compromise I
think I was looking for. Both sides seam to be agreeing that the game
I've created is not only unique, but fun, challenging, and seams to
satisfy the majority of people in both camps.
Second, a number of you indicated you have no sense of direction,
navigation, whatever in playing FPS type games like Shades of Doom. As
this seams to be a rather common problem among blind gamers I'm
certainly sympathetic to your needs and issues. As a developer of
accessible games it is always helpful to know what types of games my
potential customers would find fun, challenging, and accessible. Even
though it might not be my forte this is still very useful information to
For one thing as plenty of you know near the beginning of 2008 I began
work on a highly advanced game engine called Genesis 3D. When I
initially designed that engine I intended to be able to create 3D FPS
type titles with full 3d movement such as the ability to walk
forward/backward, move left/right, or climb up/down. There has never
been a fully accessible title with true 3d levels, true 3d movement, and
built to mainstream specifications other than Audio Quake I know of.
However, one thing I had not counted on is a majority of my customers
having navigational issues in existing FPS games like Shades of Doom and
Sarah. As I generally don't have a big problem finding my way around in
these games I assumed most blind gamers didn't either. So I'm a bit
surprised that many of you do.
The point I'm getting at is that FPS games built with my engine would
add a new demmention of complexity that none of you have experienced
before. Such as you might walk into a room with a hole in the floor. You
would have to jump into or crawl down through that hole to enter a room
below the one you are in. To get back up to the room you just left you
would have to climb a rope, staircase, ladder, etc to get back up to the
rooms above you. Basically, what I'm saying is not all of the rooms
would be on a flat surface, and you might have to climb up or down as
well as go north, south, east, or west to explore the entire level. As
this is a totally new experience for many of you I'm not sure all of you
would enjoy it. Those of you who have navigational issues may find this
too complicated or frustrating. So having a side-scroller probably would
be better suited for you in the long run.
Third, to Dark, Scott, and many others I hear you. The fact of the
matter is this is now 2009, and there are now many good examples of
side-scrollers that are every bit as good as the FPS titles out there.
Dark has convinced me that rather than trying to please a handful of
gamers who want a 80's style side-scroller I should investigate ways to
create a completely new, modern, type of side-scroller with save game
functionality, random monsters, random items,
modern combat styles, etc. To that end I say, "bring it on!"
As also has been said, now that I've spent all this time upgrading the
Genesis Engine to support 2d side-scrollers as well as more advanced FPS
type games I might as well get some use out of that functionality. Today
it might be MOTA, and someday when I'm ready maybe i can do something
else like a modern Castlevania, Megaman, or Double Dragon type clone.
The ability/functionality is there.
All and all for the time being I'm going to stick with the current
production plan. I have officially abandoned any plans to create a
traditional 80's style side-scroller, and think I would be satisfied to
create a completely modern side-scroller. So those of you such as Dark,
who are more familiar with modern side-scrollers if you have any good
ideas I'm missing I'd be happy to take them under advisement. That said,
I'll only add what I have time to include, and of course what I think is
practical for an accessible game.
As for my own thoughts and feelings on the matter I have never concealed
the fact I'd rather be making a true FPS title. However, as I mentioned
to Yohandy earlier the Genesis Engine is fairly stable and complete at
this point there is very little to stop me from doing just that after
1.0 is released. So as I see it 1.0 could be the side-scroller, and
after a while I can release 1.2 as an FPS. Those who don't want to
upgrade to an FPS wouldn't have to, but those who do can do so. This is
the best compromise and the best of both worlds I think. At this point I
consider the matter settled, and I feel much better about the outcome.
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