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 Dear thrive,

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roadkillguy
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PostSubject: Dear thrive,   Sat Jun 30, 2012 2:18 pm

I'm afraid this forum doesn't quite understand what it means to make a game. It's been what, 3.5 years? I don't care. The game doesn't exist, and probably never will.

Anyway, my problem is thus: Everyone and their dog submits ideas. Normally this isn't a problem, but Thrive is quite a unique case. I've made this point before, (and it was quickly ignored) but this forum has it completely backwards. This entire time, you've honestly expected programmers to come magically create the game for you.

It would be a completely different story if, say, the game was started by a programmer, demonstrated by a programmer, and then led, by a programmer. They would have made a small prototype, received interest, and if all went well, a community would have been born. However, if started by a programmer, certainly he or she would have never intended to simulate the entire Belgiuming universe. As you can see, thrive has a unique dilemma. The community has been created out of thin air, based on "Wouldn't it be cool if there were a game where..."

Moving back to idea submissions, remembering that the game doesn't exist and that the game roughly covers the entire Belgiuming universe, we see that any and every idea can and will be accepted. Simulating the universe is a catch-all. ANYTHING ANYONE submits is valid. Since there is no game, there's nobody to say no. Instead, there's a wiki, and the idea will be added.

Such is the problem of thrive. Thrive is one massive wad of ideas, stripped from all the best games we've all played. Org mode! Civ mode! God mode! Editors! Belgiuming editors! Cell stage! Creature stage! Civ stage! (But don't compare us to spore!) Planets! Aliens! Religions! Politics! Epic GUI! This is what makes people have zero confidence. This is what drives your precious programmers away. It's not because you have all bark and no bite, it's because you have so much Belgium bark.

What was my solution? Learn to program. Those who really wanted to make the game, should make it. But that didn't work. Nobody wanted to put so much effort into something that was so hard to understand. I've done my best to help other people understand, but every time I bring up pseudorandom numbers, people freak out. As if discussing the actual implementation of an idea is completely out of question.

Take for example, procedural generation. The people of this forum LOVE this term. "Oh, that will be procedurally generated, but we'll have an editor for it, don't worry." "The textures will be procedurally generated" "The planets will be procedurally generated" If there isn't a better way to push things off onto the programmers, I don't know what is. Nobody, not once, has EVER discussed just how exactly the textures for leaves on plants will be generated. Why? Because it's just more complicated than they'd ever like to know. Not to mention, making procedurally generated textures on plants would be outright a pain in the Belgium.

Lately, you may have seen my second solution. Divide those who can program, from those who cant. Split the forum for serious development. Unfortunately, my fears held true. I'm the only one. Here I am, writing dozens of lines of c++ for an angry crowd of 12 year-olds who just got through rage quitting spore. A massive amount of ideas submitted over the course of 3.5 years, and I'm supposed to implement them all, oh yeah --with great graphics. Does anyone else see what's wrong with this?

Yes, they've been filtered. Yes, the most ridiculous are turned down left and right. I get it. The problem still remains, however. Those who are checking the ideas, still don't know how to program. I could check the consistency of the ideas, but I would reject every single one. Hell, I don't even agree with half of the "current concept." Making all of these "ideas" a reality is beyond insane.

There you have it. I don't agree with the planned course of the game, and I'm unwilling to help people's ideas become implemented. A) Because it's all me, and B) Because it's all me. This brings me to question why I'm still here, which I cannot answer. Therefore, I'm done.

My advice? Change or die. Sure, you can keep going like I don't matter. "Hold strong" to the current course of the game. After all, it's scientific!

I'm sure you'll find great results that way.

tl;dr: roadkillguy is batshit insane and doesn't wanna program no more
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~sciocont
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sat Jun 30, 2012 2:46 pm

This is all completely true. I've got too much on my plate to learn program up to the level needed, so I work on keeping the rest of this filtered for the programmers. I still probably don't do nearly enough. I'm making an attempt to change these forums into a more dichotomous setting, where the programmers and hard developers can shop for decent ideas amongst the main forums, and discuss specifics in hard development. This still isn't enough.
If we want to get anything done, we need to hit the books and really evaluate the feasibility of everything: start discussing real processes, functions, and implications of what we have, and above all do the math, the programming, and the thinking.

In defense of Thrive, however, we haven't had the luxury of forethought. If I'd started this, programmers would have been the only people involved. I would have learned to program, and we might have had something. It wasn't started by anyone here, and by the time anyone here got to it, it was already being fed by hype from people who didn't know any better. I think it's our job at this point to bring down the hype, get down to earth, and start simple. The colorful rings of the cell stage are enough to start with. They don't need to be beautiful, they need to demonstrate evolution. If we can do that, I'll be happy, and we'll release.

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PTFace
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sat Jun 30, 2012 9:13 pm

Speaking of programming, where can I find the version of C++ you are using
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Grep42
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sat Jun 30, 2012 9:18 pm

Hello Roadkillguy, I'm Grep. Don't remember if we've met, I myself had given up on thrive for a while. I see what you mean when you say this game is not going to happen the way we want it. While I do not work in games, programming, or pretty much anything like that, I agree this is way out of proportion. There should be more programmers than brainstormers, but programming isn't that popular of a hobby. Now I would learn to program, but honestly I doubt this game getting off the ground anyway. Also, I'm lazy
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~sciocont
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sun Jul 01, 2012 12:09 am

To be totally honest, I'm doing this because I like it, no because I think it will get done. I really enjoy directing this, even though I know it's unlikely we'll produce much. that doesn't matter to me. I like the challenges that it poses and the things that I learn while solving them.

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roadkillguy
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sun Jul 01, 2012 8:26 am

~sciocont wrote:
In defense of Thrive, however, we haven't had the luxury of forethought. If I'd started this, programmers would have been the only people involved. I would have learned to program, and we might have had something. It wasn't started by anyone here, and by the time anyone here got to it, it was already being fed by hype from people who didn't know any better. I think it's our job at this point to bring down the hype, get down to earth, and start simple. The colorful rings of the cell stage are enough to start with. They don't need to be beautiful, they need to demonstrate evolution. If we can do that, I'll be happy, and we'll release.

I'm still the only one. "If I can do that, You'll be happy, and I'll release."

Quote :
Speaking of programming, where can I find the version of C++ you are using

C++ is a language, not a program. It's a standard, not a compiler. The current version is c++11, commonly known as c++0x, but your compiler may or may not support it. I personally use clang++.

I'm fairly certain your name is reserved.
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~sciocont
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sun Jul 01, 2012 6:00 pm

roadkillguy wrote:
~sciocont wrote:
In defense of Thrive, however, we haven't had the luxury of forethought. If I'd started this, programmers would have been the only people involved. I would have learned to program, and we might have had something. It wasn't started by anyone here, and by the time anyone here got to it, it was already being fed by hype from people who didn't know any better. I think it's our job at this point to bring down the hype, get down to earth, and start simple. The colorful rings of the cell stage are enough to start with. They don't need to be beautiful, they need to demonstrate evolution. If we can do that, I'll be happy, and we'll release.

I'm still the only one. "If I can do that, You'll be happy, and I'll release."

Unfortunately, that's how it is. I really do appreciate sticking with it this long. You've probably learned a lot along the way as well, though.

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Tenebrarum
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Wed Jul 11, 2012 8:44 pm

I've been trying to learn how to code for a while. It largely hasn't ended well, likely do to my having a learning disability. It's minor, but it makes working with numbers and certain logic patterns more difficult than it should be.

I want to help you in any way I can, and I've said on multiple occasions that you should have absolute control over the greenlighting of ideas, seeing as you'll be the one to have to implement them.

This is largely why I take such long breaks from this project. I work for a while, and then realize how hopeless it is. Then, I get curious, check back up, marvel at the progress and hope, and repeat the process over again.

Now, you mentioned graphics. I've been wondering if we might want to revert to the traditional cube creatures almost all evo-sims use. I certainly don't want to, but it would give us a much simpler base and would make a number of things easier to figure out even into my sphere of influence.

As it stands, all I can say is that I will keep trying to learn C++, and I will keep looking up to you. Even if you do decide you want to leave us, I can't imagine someone who could have helped us more. Besides Gabe Newell. Thank you. Gratsiam valde ago tibi, ad praecula praeculorum.
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Brennus
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Thu Jul 12, 2012 3:02 pm

Maybe ads do have a use.

This may seem off topic, but if we release ads saying that C++ programmers are wanted for this, we might be able to get some more programmers to help with thrive. Also, a quick google search turned up a rather large forum devoted to programming. I'm not a member there, but I think we should be able to get some programmers with us if we let them know of our existence.
http://www.programmingforums.org/ I have no idea what the website is like, though.
EDIT: Also, with what he said, does that mean that roadkillguy is leaving? If so, I think we are deeply screwed...


Last edited by Brennus on Fri Jul 13, 2012 11:10 am; edited 1 time in total
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The Uteen
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Fri Jul 13, 2012 2:11 pm

Brennus wrote:
Maybe ads do have a use.

This may seem off topic, but if we release ads saying that C++ programmers are wanted for this, we might be able to get some more programmers to help with thrive. Also, a quick google search turned up a rather large forum devoted to programming. I'm not a member there, but I think we should be able to get some programmers with us if we let them know of our existence.
http://www.programmingforums.org/ I have no idea what the website is like, though.
EDIT: Also, with what he said, does that mean that roadkillguy is leaving? If so, I think we are deeply screwed...
On the other hand, we might just reveal appear to the forum that we are just a cluster of people with an idea for a game desperate for more programmers. Sorry, but we really should just wait.

And I think Roadkillguy just wanted to say he felt a bit grumpy about how we assume him to be a coding sorcerer, ready to turn ideas into code with a wave of his magic dongle, when he is in fact a coding elf, working hard throughout the year to bring us a new game by Christmas.
(Sorry Roadkill, but you're still a magical being to us. )
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jaws2blood
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:58 pm

i'd help out but i'm to busy to put my C++ experience to use here. i suggest to everyone using the Unreal Development Kit, it is an engine made for shooters but quite some time ago i remember making some spore inspired game on it. It was pretty simple, basic, and hideous, but it worked, and that's what matters. Also, UDK isn't as scary as straight up c++, more drag and droppish. However for the BEST results and getting together your own engine, you'll need to learn c++, which can very easily be done by watching the "Absolute n00b spoonfeed" c++ tutorial series on youtube. If you can't understand that series, then, well, you're pretty much Belgiumed in terms of getting anywhere. Finally, the whole procedural generation thing is pure bull poop, tileable, seamless textures and 3d models really should suffice until progress is actually made. Then you could focus on the more advanced doohickies and gimmicks. As for Roadkill, that was a nice repository, too bad it's probably not going to be finished.
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Brennus
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Fri Jul 20, 2012 1:54 pm

Quote :
And I think Roadkillguy just wanted to say he felt a bit grumpy about how we assume him to be a coding sorcerer, ready to turn ideas into code with a wave of his magic dongle, when he is in fact a coding elf, working hard throughout the year to bring us a new game by Christmas.
(Sorry Roadkill, but you're still a magical being to us. )

Normally I'd agree with you, but Roadkillguy hasn't been on since July 2nd. I don't know if absences like that are common for programmers here, but I have a feeling that he's abandoned us altogether...
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MeowMan1
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Fri Jul 20, 2012 4:37 pm

When do you think we should reveal ourselves to that coding forum?
It sounds like a good idea, although I do see what you mean.
Maybe Sciocont could introduce them to us, because quite frankly, I think he would be the best person to do that job.
And after all, he kinda is the boss around here, that is unless admin suddenly appeared on here, but I highly doubt he'll ever come back.
So yeah.
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Brennus
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Fri Jul 20, 2012 7:15 pm

All ADMIN does is monitor the forum. I don't think he's made any big contributions to Thrive. He checks up on here every so often to make sure that all of the rules are being obeyed.
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MeowMan1
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Fri Jul 20, 2012 8:37 pm

sorry if this post is irrelevant, but then who is the true boss around here?
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The Uteen
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sat Jul 21, 2012 5:41 am

Sciocont is Overall Team Lead and US Of Alaska is Overall Team Co-Lead, they're the ones in charge. ADMIN is just an account which is used for administering the forum, not a person. But look on the bright side, at least Santa exists.

/offtopic
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sat Jul 21, 2012 8:19 am

so admin was never a person?
wierd....Honestly I couldn't care less if he is or not.
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:35 pm

Guys, I think you are missing the main point here! Roadkillguy has not been on since July 2nd! If hes really abandoned us, then weve lost our last and only coder! The guy was a genius, and its not that easy finding the likes of him!

Now, I used to be all for the voluntary work-when-I-feel-like-it schedule, but now I see why regular game developers dont do that. Progress is taking so long, people are LEAVING. Since we have no coders right now, no matter how many ideas we spurt out about god tools and realism and achievements and the such, it is IMPOSSIBLE TO IMPLEMENT THEM!

We need to rekindle that fire that we had back in 2010, the fire that had us posting every day, the fire that filled this place with activity. Ever wonder why the busiest session on this forum was TWO YEARS AGO?! Because we are going backwards, thats why! We are LOSING people!

We need to go around the web and get more Belgiuming programmers! There are programming forums everywhere! there are gaming forums everywhere! There are science forums everywhere! We need to go to these forums and draw people in to create a larger community!

Basically, we need to set deadlines! We need to have a microbe stage by the end of 2012! I dont care if you wanted to play Minecraft in the meantime! I dont care if you wanted to shop for clothes with your mom instead! We need to get Belgium done, and to do so, we need more coders! How do we get people to join our project? We need a Belgiuming game to show them thats how! THATS HOW WE ATTRACT CODERS!!!

We cannot let this project die, for all that is good and holy! Think of all the games that have attempted or done this before! NONE! Think of all the epic games that didnt cost a dime to make, and not a penny more to buy! NONE! Think of all the details they went into compared to us! NONE!

THERE IS A REASON WE ARE CALLED REVOLUTIONARY GAMES, SO LET US LIVE UP TO THAT NAME!!! MICROBE 2012!!!

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roadkillguy
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:56 pm

NickTheNick wrote:
Guys, I think you are missing the main point here! Roadkillguy has not been on since July 2nd! If hes really abandoned us, then weve lost our last and only coder! The guy was a genius, and its not that easy finding the likes of him!

Now, I used to be all for the voluntary work-when-I-feel-like-it schedule, but now I see why regular game developers dont do that. Progress is taking so long, people are LEAVING. Since we have no coders right now, no matter how many ideas we spurt out about god tools and realism and achievements and the such, it is IMPOSSIBLE TO IMPLEMENT THEM!

We need to rekindle that fire that we had back in 2010, the fire that had us posting every day, the fire that filled this place with activity. Ever wonder why the busiest session on this forum was TWO YEARS AGO?! Because we are going backwards, thats why! We are LOSING people!

We need to go around the web and get more Belgiuming programmers! There are programming forums everywhere! there are gaming forums everywhere! There are science forums everywhere! We need to go to these forums and draw people in to create a larger community!

Basically, we need to set deadlines! We need to have a microbe stage by the end of 2012! I dont care if you wanted to play Minecraft in the meantime! I dont care if you wanted to shop for clothes with your mom instead! We need to get Belgium done, and to do so, we need more coders! How do we get people to join our project? We need a Belgiuming game to show them thats how! THATS HOW WE ATTRACT CODERS!!!

We cannot let this project die, for all that is good and holy! Think of all the games that have attempted or done this before! NONE! Think of all the epic games that didnt cost a dime to make, and not a penny more to buy! NONE! Think of all the details they went into compared to us! NONE!

THERE IS A REASON WE ARE CALLED REVOLUTIONARY GAMES, SO LET US LIVE UP TO THAT NAME!!! MICROBE 2012!!!

Give me one good reason why an experienced "coder" would want to dedicate his free time to a group of kids, begging for a game that encompasses the entire universe.

If you're so avid about the game, write it. When you finally install *gulp* Visual Studio, you'll find that it's not trivial. You'll realize why indie games are so simple, and why they have such a clean, narrow focus. If you go "advertising" to any of these programming forums, they'll laugh in your face. This backwardsness is what my original post covers.

You could try Unity or something, but I feel like the codebase will be all over the place and really buggy.

You're all missing the point. Stop adding, and disregard the entire "Current Concept." Start over and write some code.

Gee, and I wanted to end at 500.
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Brennus
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:12 am


This game is honestly screwed, unless we can get more coders. That, however, will be practically impossible, unless we all either learn to code, or somehow get a bunch of money to hire some decent programmers. The former will be a hell of a lot easier than the latter, especially with help from jaws2blood. The latter will be a LOT harder, even with the help of kickstarter- hold on. Various projects on kickstarter have raised over 5 million dollars, most of those video games or video game consoles. With the sheer enormity of thrive, and all the hype that's been built up over the years, we cold easily get a huge amount of money for this, money which we could use to hire programmers, pay for ads, etc. This would also use the aforementioned hype to our advantage, instead of it being a bane and driving us backwards.

I know this is die-hard indie, but it's at the very least worth a shot. We need to do this, or thrive is very likely to die.
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PTFace
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:30 am

I've meant to say this for a while, but if and when we get more supporters and more importantly, programmers, we need to focus specifically on the microbe stage, then work are way up.
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:29 am

Ahh, Roadkillguy, I was afraid you had left, Im glad you havent. First of, Id like to say I really appreciate you sticking around with us this long. I know you must have heard this a million times, but we are all in debt to your efforts. I plan on learning C++ when I return to my desktop computer, but unfortunately Im stuck with just a mobile device for a while.

roadkillguy wrote:
Give me one good reason why an experienced "coder" would want to dedicate his free time to a group of kids, begging for a game that encompasses the entire universe.

I made sure that when I went on the programmer forums, I specified that first we want to overcome the hurdle of creating a solid microbe stage. Then, once we release that, actual gameplay is WAAY more likely to draw people to this project than just concepts. We need a lot more coders, so that then we can discuss how to implement the ideas as we go along. It is important that we only produce one stage at a time; having playable segments of the game to demo for them is far more effective at bringing in new programmers. Microbe stage shouldnt be too much of a challenge, and if we make it well, then the programmers that we could hopefully attract from that would help a lot to conceptualize a practical multicellular stage. One stage at a time. We cant jump up the whole staircase at once, we need to take it one step at a time.

roadkillguy wrote:
If you're so avid about the game, write it. When you finally install *gulp* Visual Studio, you'll find that it's not trivial. You'll realize why indie games are so simple, and why they have such a clean, narrow focus. If you go "advertising" to any of these programming forums, they'll laugh in your face. This backwardsness is what my original post covers.

I would like to write it, yes, but as I mentioned above I need my desktop first. Also, we need multiple coders working cooperatively on this, so in the meantime im trying to reel in some of those. I have a link here of a request I posted for programmers on a programming forum, specifically in the request section. It hasnt gained much attention yet.

http://forum.codecall.net/topic/71030-thrive-an-epic-game-of-evolution/

roadkillguy wrote:
You could try Unity or something, but I feel like the codebase will be all over the place and really buggy.

As I am ignorant in both coding and game development software, I do not know what that is.

roadkillguy wrote:
You're all missing the point. Stop adding, and disregard the entire "Current Concept." Start over and write some code.

Although I do not think it is a bad thing to keep adding new ideas, I do think that right now we must focus our attentions on getting programmers, learning to program, and finishing the Microbe stage. However, I wouldnt want to start over at all. Its better to keep all our concepts, and not have to come up with them all over again, but once we get to working on that specific stage, we undergo the process of picking and choosing the value added to gameplay versus the effort required to program for each idea, and then pick and choose the final ones in the game. And remember, when we finish this game, all the cool ideas that we leave behind can be returned to. It makes for good updates and DLC's.

roadkillguy wrote:
Gee, and I wanted to end at 500.

500? What do you mean?

@Brennus: Ehh, im not so sure about trying to raise money for this game. I think thats something you need to take up to the team leads. I dont think this game is screwed, just asleep, we need to wake it back up, and give it the energy needed to reach its true potential.

@PTFace: That is exactly, bang, right on, bullseye, 100% what we need to do. You are completely correct and I absolutely agree with you!



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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 11:25 am

A kickstarter, as Brennus said, is the best root to take. He was right when he said some projects earn millions but that some is maybe less than 200 projects, most unfortunately don;t reach the desired amount of funding. However even if they don;t produce a high amount, by setting a low goal as a target more people are likely to back the project

Deviant Art is actually great for advertising kickstarters. If people all see images, concept art and official art of a project with a link to the kickstarter they are more likely to back them as most people need visual content over the technical if they want to back up a project.

But most kickstarters have to offer something to the backer in return, usually special content, but this is generally a small price for the funding that large scale projects receive. For a kick starter you also need a video, it helps. Try in the video to explain, in basic terms, what they game is about, what players can do in the game, how this achieved (basic technical talk) and why the project needs the money, you can also advertise for programmers here.

But it's just a thought, but it's not bad to try it out. Sciocont will probably need to start up the Kickstarter on the website and then everyone else could contribute to the video, concept design and actual proper 'official'/professional looking artwork.
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:30 pm

On an unrelated note, Roadkillguy, did you write the engine on a command line or linux or something, my compiler doesn't like your code. I also noticed you were going on straight up opengl. Should have used ogre3d imo. Also, any explanation on your classes in the headers?

PS: seriously roadkillguy? Unity3d? lul. They're better off with visual studio, ogre 3d, and SDL.
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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:58 pm

jaws2blood wrote:
On an unrelated note, Roadkillguy, did you write the engine on a command line or linux or something, my compiler doesn't like your code. I also noticed you were going on straight up opengl. Should have used ogre3d imo. Also, any explanation on your classes in the headers?

PS: seriously roadkillguy? Unity3d? lul. They're better off with visual studio, ogre 3d, and SDL.
He wrote everything on linux.

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PostSubject: Re: Dear thrive,   Today at 1:45 am

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