Tuesday thoughts

This piece can basically be summed up as: “we need to find more ways to make money out of games, otherwise we’re screwed”. A sentiment I can heartily agree with, although its possibly just my biased spin on the article.

Also, this news on Visual Science is uplifting, if a little late. Hopefully the staff stand a better chance of getting some of their unpaid wages/redundancy on the back of this.

A quieter week this last week, thankfully; mostly dedicated to laying the groundwork for future development. You know the sort of thing, getting all the tools upgraded to the latest versions, sorting out a development structure, and so on. Okay, well if you’re a programmer you know the sort of thing. Suffice to say it’s an interesting challenge to make old code sit nicely in a structure which promotes re-use. So new code doesn’t disappear into a bottomless pit and become wasted work.

Some experimentation was done also to see if a C#/Lua mix would work well in new tools. Short story – it would, but it won’t integrate very well with C++. So tools which need to co-exist with the current engine will have to stay as Lua/C++ instead. There may be scope for a C# tool in the future, but not just yet.

I also spent an hour or so answering questions for an old compatriot (Phil Vaughan, now a lecturer at Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee) on the old art/code divide, and what it means as team sizes grow larger and larger. I’ll probably polish up and condense what was said and post it up here as a rant, although the gist of it is “agile yay, monolithic management in big teams nay”. I’m a firm believer that game development teams just don’t scale well beyond 20 people, and any project that needs more resources than that should be worked in such a way that it can be done with several smaller teams.

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