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The Natural Conclusion

February 4, 2014

Hello and a belated Happy New Year to everyone! There have been a lot of things happening for me and the project but where to start in talking about it? I have an announcement that would seem pretty big but then again, perhaps some of you have seen it coming for some time. I guess I’ll just start with what’s been happening with me and then get to the announcement last.

As stated in the previous post, I got a new job (a change of profession actually) which is a lot different than what I did for the last few years. This new job is satisfying to me on a personal level and I like it which is a great bonus but it also happens to be a very physically demanding job. Sometimes I’ll work 10 hour days and when I get home, I’d just be exhausted. I would wind down, eat, shower and sometimes just head right to bed to do it all again the next day. That left very little time to do anything on Infernal Dead and I’ll be completely honest; on my days off I had a lot of trouble focusing on what had to be done.

I tried to contract some work out to a couple of Programmers before the New Year to help out with some of the more advanced features I had planned but none of it panned out. One person did some work for me which I had paid for in advance because they seemed in dire need and they led me on a 2 month-long game of cat and mouse. When the work was finally turned over after I had filed a complaint with a third-party, it turned out to be useless. Perhaps this person used a different version of the engine than I did but whatever the case, it was incompatible and just plain did not work. Rather than go through more bullshit, I just decided to cut my losses and move on.

Fast forward a couple of months later and I contacted another Programmer (well-known in the community) for help with some hurdles I had been experiencing. This person was well-known and had a good reputation so we began to negotiate over a few days of private messaging on the forum. Things seemed to go well at first as this person appeared ready to tackle what I had presented. In a nutshell, I had some code that needed just a little bit of expanding. It wasn’t a hard thing to do for someone of his/her calibre but was beyond my scope as far as Programming. They were eager and wanted to start work right away but before I could even talk about money. At this point, I had to stop them and ask for a price quote first. Logical, right? Well, they didn’t seem too impressed by that.

They asked me what my budget was; how much I planned on spending. I did not reveal my budget but had an idea what it would cost. They assured me that even though the work wasn’t difficult, a lot of testing might have to be done and that they couldn’t give me a price until after they had completed the work.

Uhh, What? Isn’t that why it’s called an estimate?

So, I contacted some Programming friends of mine (different field of Programming work) and I gave them a number of what I was expecting to pay for this feature. Every single one of them agreed it was a fair price because the groundwork had already been laid and they cautioned me to not let this person stretch it along because of ‘testing‘ because then they could pretty much make the testing last as long as they wanted. I returned to this Programmer with a number for what I was expecting to pay and then never heard from them again! What a world.

So what the hell happened? Did they want to know my budget so that they could suck it all up? And when they found out I wasn’t willing to pay some ridiculous price they just left in search of some other sucker? It’s kind of funny but now that I think of it, the first Programmer (the Cat and Mouse person) also wanted to know my budget upfront, which I revealed (stupid of me) and they said they would do the work for that entire amount. It wasn’t until I said that there were other Contractors involved that I had to pay as well that they lowered their pricing to something more fair…for the same amount of work.

It all reminds me of a crooked Mechanic. You know the type ‘Uhh, so I know you just wanted an oil change but we’re going to need to overhaul your Flux Radiometer and that’ll be 1500 bucks and then we’ll need to rotate your windshield to balance out the vehicle, and that’ll be another 200 and uh, there’s a leak in your rear Bumper which’ll cost another 100.

Crooked fucking Mechanics of the Game Development world man…lol…

Well, those were some frustrating times and then coupled with all the problems that kept cropping up whenever I tried working with this engine…it all just made for a tiring overall experience. And this sort of thing didn’t just start happening but as you all know from past posts I made, happened for a long time.

Uggghhhhh

This didn’t bother me the first 5000 times…but now it’s a little old.

So I did a lot more soul-searching and asked myself the following things:

  1. What was I getting out of this?
  2. What was I planning on getting out of this?
  3. How much longer could I keep fighting this engine?
  4. Was what I was planning to do, really worth my time or effort now?
  5. How much longer will it take to create?

It hasn’t been a quick development process by any means. How long have people been waiting since I first announced this project? Too long for too little it would appear. So I came to some conclusions and again, maybe some of you have seen this coming a long time ago. Maybe it was the natural progression of the project that I had been fighting all along and that is why it has been such a struggle.

Infernal Dead (Daemonicon) was supposed to be a Spiritual Successor to Out Of Hell. But now that I think of it, what it needed to be was Out Of Hell. What do I mean by this? Well, many aspects, themes and even characters from Out Of Hell would have appeared in Infernal Dead. I had read in the past that some people were a little disappointed that the new project was not a direct continuation of Out Of Hell or an expansion of it. Maybe that was why I couldn’t garner the interest for the crowd-funding phase? I am not going to fight it anymore. I’ve wasted precious time trying to implement new features and mechanics that I couldn’t possibly know would work until the very end.

So the announcment is: I will be making this Out Of Hell: Complete.

I will rebuild this from the ground up (in that I mean, I will not be importing maps or other work from the old UT2004 version) and I will take into account all of the features that we talked about in this forum post: http://outofhell.freeforums.org/your-ideal-hell-t169.html

I will be using ALL of the assets created thus far for Infernal Dead and seeing as how some of the new monsters and NPC’s are expansions of Out Of Hell counterparts anyway, it should fit seamlessly. The original Out Of Hell can now serve as the ‘prototype’ or ‘blueprint’ and I can have a clear direction on where I can take it. I will do what I think I should have done all along:

  1. I will completely flesh out the entire story of Out Of Hell.
  2. I will further develop the characters that we’ve come to love and hate.
  3. I will bring the visuals up to modern standards.
  4. I will make sure that the atmosphere in this game surpasses that of the original.
  5. I will extend the story past the original conclusion.
  6. I will fix what was wrong with the original in terms of gameplay and performance.

This is my contribution to the loyal fanbase that has supported me all these years and my contribution to the medium and the art. I hope that this news brings excitement to you and you aren’t left disappointed. This will be a complete and total horror package. I think, that this is the natural conclusion.

Categories: Miscellaneous
  1. February 10, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    Robert H. Dylan :

    Hi. Sorry to hear about your recent dev probs. I’ve mentioned this in a recent post: http://alienfiction.com/2014/02/10/serious-business-version-of-game-development-tycoon/

    Your ideas are solid – I like the health idea – but also consider an option to up the gore to awesome “Beast Busters” level-spraying amounts (there are too many ‘serious’ / ‘dark’ games around nowadays): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zjCaUNTiig

    If you need any advice with the writing, as always – don’t hesitate to ask (personally I’d use a nonlinear storytelling approach.. ;-)

    Sincerely, R.H.D

    I can’t believe you mentioned ‘Beast Busters’. AWESOME. I love that game!

    I used to play that at the local Arcade non-stop! The sound effects of the female zombies in OOH are direct inspirations from the zombies in Beast Busters. I love that ‘haaaaahhhccckkkk!!’ sound they make when you blow them apart! Unfortunately I never got a chance to play Second Nightmare, it just never appeared where I lived. :( I do like the idea of an over the top gore setting though, thank you. ;)

  2. chicken+ribs combo
    February 9, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    yoyobatty :

    Ah, so just rebuild the maps based off of the originals using your heightened knowledge and concepts?

    Exactly. I don’t want to get into a rigid mindset of just ‘porting’ because I think you all deserve more than that. :)

  3. yoyobatty
    February 8, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    It is unfortunate to hear how things weren’t working out, but there is always light to darkness and I see you’ve found it. What will you begin working on first? I hope Moving the maps into the new engine and replacing the old assets and content is priority so we can get the screenshots we love so much. :D

    • chicken+ribs combo
      February 8, 2014 at 7:25 pm

      I’ve already started rebuilding the GPD from the ground up. Surprisingly, it isn’t taking as long as I had thought it would (building it in an external program) Porting the maps is more trouble than it’s worth and would only limit me in terms of design freedom.

      • yoyobatty
        February 9, 2014 at 4:01 pm

        Ah, so just rebuild the maps based off of the originals using your heightened knowledge and concepts?

  4. John Glames
    February 7, 2014 at 10:24 pm

    Will the time cycle actually effect certain story events? or are you going to rewrite the plot with this new system in mind so it won’t be largely affected by it?

    • chicken+ribs combo
      February 8, 2014 at 12:01 am

      Great questions! Some of the plot has been expanded upon, others have been changed a bit to keep things fresh for those who have played through the original, as well as to bypass a few glaring plot holes with the original story. ;)

      As far as the time cycle is concerned, certain areas of the game dependant on the story will not be affected by it at all. Let’s take Barricade 24 for example, where Donovan had to sneak out of the camp at night.

      In the new version, it will continue to take place entirely at night until Donovan escapes from the camp. After he does, the next map will start off during the night and then pass gradually through the day, into the night and back through the day again etc. These scenarios are few however and most of the situations that you encounter won’t be affected by what time of day or night it is.

      The night cycle mainly serves to add an extra layer of terror because visibilty will be very limited (it is established early in the new story that there is no power aside from a few buildings that have generators) and certain types of…let’s say, ‘Shadowy characters’ will only appear at night. ;)

  5. February 6, 2014 at 8:51 pm

    No, ALL of those ideas will be incorporated into Out Of Hell. I put too much work into creating those systems that I couldn’t possibly throw them away now. :) I’m hoping that these features offer something a little fresh to what we’re used to in SP horror games.

    1: Time of day will continue to change dynamically. If you take too long during the day to complete the level, it will eventually turn into night and you will have to rely on your flashlight more.

    2: Skill-tree and Experience point system to further accomodate your play style.

    3: Survival Aspect: You will have to eat, drink and rest so items such as food and water do not refill health as they did in the original. Whereas the original was a standard FPS with standard conventions in that you simply just made your way through the game only worrying about your health, I’m going to try to expand on it so that you will have to worry about hunger, thirst and rest.

    However, I won’t incorporate this aspect as a ‘punishment’ to players, in that, if you don’t eat/drink/rest your character will slowly deteriorate or becomes hampered in any way, but if you DO eat/drink/rest, your character performance will receive ‘boosts’ to stats. I think that rewarding players for playing a certain way is better than punishing players for not playing a certain way.

    4: Random Generation/Procedural Map system will still be present, though used in different ways.

    Thanks for posting! :)

  6. jgreenburg
    February 6, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Very interesting. I was worried for a bit while reading through you were just going to give up and stop development. I did like the early ideas of this game going more for the survival aspect where we have more than just the enemies to worry about as well as the day/night cycle. Are those ideas going to be abandoned in favor of recreating Out of Hell?

  1. February 10, 2014 at 2:35 pm
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