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4 years ago

Current Projects and Plans

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Since I'm at university now, a lot of my time will probably be spent on that... but I also have a lot of free time as well, which I intend to spend on different projects. I thought I might as well tell you what they are, though keep in mind that these are only my current plans and not a promise for what's definitely to come.

1 - A Personality Site
I know that few people here are interested in this, but I'm deeply fascinated by personality type stuff and do enjoy writing about it at length. The ∞ temperaments section ∞ of this website apparently earns half - or more - of the total revenue for this site, interestingly, but I don't consider the four temperaments idea to have much use these days, what with all the much better models and such.

So, I've started work on a site which details all of the personality systems that I know of so far. It's far from finished at the moment, but I might finish and open it up relatively soon, since I do enjoy writing about these things and it's not as if there's tons of work to do. It'll allow me to channel my passion into something productive and profitable.

2 - My Main Site
I've yet to decide what to do about Alora Fane and Fig Hunter... I talked about it in the last post; I don't know whether to do the whole 'split site' thing or whether it'd just become a source of ridicule and conflict. I also don't much care for the existing attitude of this site, though, so I don't really know what I can do because I'm certain the undesirable members will flock to whatever new one I have immediately, setting the scene for all those to come and preemptively scaring away sensitive sorts of people. Possibly.

I feel like I need to get this sorted out soon, though, because I can't really do much until I have a 'base' to work from.

3 - DreamQuest
This game is basically finished at the moment, though it needs some refining. I'm unsure how to go about releasing it. I know all the *possibilties* and am not looking for suggestions, but each of them leads down very different paths, and I have to be wary about what those paths will eventually lead to.

The game is intended to update over time, and it's more of a tool than a stand-alone game, so I'm not sure whether a sponsorship-type deal would work. It might be better to include Mochi adverts (or some similar service), but they produce only tiny amounts of income (like $5 per million plays or something stupid like that). Perhaps a better thing is to simply try and get people to come to my own site and play the game there, where they can upload quests and stuff; hopefully the site's own adverts would generate decent income. But I don't know. I don't want to just throw it out into the wild with a really foolish money-making plan. If it weren't for the fact that I need money to survive, I'd have released it already, ages ago.

4 - Miasmon
I've actually got two entirely different versions of Miasmon in development right now! There's one which I've been working on for a couple of years (or rather, I started it that long ago but abandoned it maybe a year ago), which is a top-down RPG sort of thing with pixelated monster graphics and such. It's fully working and I am pleased with many aspects of it... but there were also a ton of things I DIDN'T like about it, like the plot and setting and characters and ugh. It was really hard to work on because I was so uncertain about it.

However, I still play it from time to time, and it is entertaining in its own way. It might be nice to try and get into it again... though I know that it'd have to be a huge game, like Pokemon length, for it to work properly, and I don't know if I can get it ALL done before releasing it. Releasing it in chapters has been my plan from the start, but there's always the difficulty of making sure everything works between chapters, which requires a lot of forward planning. Possibly more than I have! I did it with MARDEK, but I also had to remake the first two chapters because of a lack of proper planning... It's so hard to balance the game for circumstances that won't occur until much, much later.

The OTHER version of Miasmon is designed as yet another gradually updating game, with side-scrolling exploration and so on and so forth. It was originally called Programon, and I've talked about it before. I'm not sure what to do with that one yet. There are so many things about it that I'm really uncertain about.

I could just try to merge the two ideas, but... eh. I don't know. I'll try to come up with something.

5 - Wyrmholes
This is a game involving a character called Fianait, who looks like this!!

It's set in the Alora Fane world, and it'd probably be a standard RPG like MARDEK was. I went through various different ideas before arriving at that concept, but it seems the best way to go about it for several reasons.

I intend to try to make it for Android phones. I've already started experimenting with Android development, but I've got a LOT to learn before I can make anything that actually plays well. So this one won't see the light of day for a long time, if at all. Still, it's something that I'd like to try at some point.

6 - MARDEK 4
I do know that people would want this, and I'd like to work on it too, but I don't know if it'd be sufficiently profitable for the amount of effort it'd require. I'd need to work on it for probably at least a year non-stop, and then my only realistic hope is to go down the sponsorship route again and earn less than $10,000 for all my efforts. That's hardly a respectable yearly salary, is it?

It's something I'd like to get around to once I've got some comfortable, reliable 'revenue streams' set up. Most of the other projects are designed to be those; to be things I can set in motion relatively quickly, which will then generate money on their own while I spend my time on other things (like this site and the temperaments site do already).

So yes. That's what I've got planned for now. I'll try to post about updates whenever there are any!
4 years ago

I might not bother splitting the site...

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: IdeasPlansThe Site
I'm at university at the moment. I've mostly just been keeping to myself for this first week, though I have met a couple of people who I've had interesting conversations with. I've also met the rest of my Game Art class, though I've not yet mentioned this site or the games that I make or anything.

When I *do*, there's a chance that at least one person might investigate my site, and quite frankly it'd be embarrassing if they found a place that exalted sensitivity while decrying certain attitudes that are probably really common amongst most gamer types of people. I don't want to be the source of conflict or ridicule, so I'm wondering whether it's best to split the site at all.

I mean, the main reason I was interested in such a thing in the first place was to draw people to me so then I might find meaningful friendships, but I feel like nothing I ever do will attract the exact kind of people that I'm looking for because of the medium that I'm using to express myself (it's unlikely that these kinds of people would be interested in Flash games), so all the site split would really do would be to fracture the community and create frustration with no real gain.

I still do find the atmosphere of this place highly uncomfortable, and I am less than chuffed about the idea of being surrounded by certain individuals once more, but perhaps rather than splitting the whole site, I could at least have different sections of the forum, and different chatrooms, or something.

If I DON'T split the site though - and it does seem like that might be the best course of action - then I'm unsure whether to keep Fig Hunter, or whether to use the Alora Fane site. Both exist, but they're so *different*... Fig Hunter is darker and probably more likely to appeal to a male 'gamer' sort of crowd, while Alora Fane is softer and gentler and might be more likely to allow a softer and gentler community to grow... I feel like Fig Hunter represents a past that I'm trying to escape from, while Alora Fane is a hopeful future that better suits the direction that my mind has been evolving in, so I might use that site. Maybe. Or a new version of it, anyway. But I'm not yet certain.

If I do make Alora Fane my main site, THIS place will still continue to exist; it just probably won't really be updated anymore. You'll still be able to post and stuff though.

I'm still trying to decide on what to do, anyway. Hopefully I'll have something sorted out soon!
4 years ago

Even more about the site split

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
Categories: The Site
It's come to my attention that again, there's some confusion about the purpose of the two different sections that'll be on the new site.

While it's true that the 'sensitive' section is more focused on feelings, it's not merely meant as a place suitable for those who want to express *their* feelings. Everyone has feelings, and if merely having them and wanting to express them were the sole requirement for fitting in there, then there'd be no need for a split at all because everyone would meet those criteria.

No, instead it's based on interaction styles. The way you respond to *other people* expressing their feelings.
Ideally, in order to create a soothing and positive feeling for the sensitive side of the new site, replies should involve:

* empathising
* understanding
* validation of feelings
* encouragement

And what would be unwelcome would be:

* unsolicited advice; trying to 'solve the problem'
* detachment
* dismissal of feelings
* argument
* questioning motives
* criticism

I'll provide an example of what I mean. Let's say that someone started a forum thread, with this as their first post:

I'm starting university tomorrow! I'm really nervous about it... I'm worried about the people there; I'm afraid they'll all be jock-type guys and I don't want to be surrounded by such people...

Here's a possible reply:

I know how that is! I felt really nervous on my first day too, so at least you're not alone! I hate those jock-type guys, they're so annoying! I hope that you can find some people you like anyway!

This reply contains examples of the four things I listed above.
It's empathising and understanding in that it's sharing a similar experience and saying that they actually know how it is.
It *validates* the original poster's fear of these 'jock-type guys' rather than questioning it, leading the poster to feel understood and supported.
It also positively encourages the poster.

Compare that to this reply:

You shouldn't stereotype people like that. You should give these 'jock-type guys', as you call them, a chance rather than dismissing them out of hand. Try talking to all kinds of people instead of being picky like that. Stop worrying, there's nothing scary about it. Just think positive thoughts.

Do you consider this a good, or at least fair reply? Or do you at least see nothing wrong with it? If so, then you probably don't belong on the sensitive side of the new site.
It's not trolling, obviously, but it's a comment that I personally would scowl at (and I do get comments like this all the time).
While it doesn't explicitly say 'you are wrong', this comment questions and dismisses the poster's fears as if they're wrong or irrelevant ("you shouldn't stereotype", "stop worrying"). It tries to 'solve the problem' through advice that wasn't asked for, and while it obviously means well, it doesn't instill hope or feelings of being understood. It tries to change the person, rather than supporting them as they are. It takes on a superior, teacher sort of role rather than being a "we are in the same boat" kind of shared-wavelength thing.

And then there are THESE kinds of comments:

oh for [PROFANITY]'s sake get over yourself. man up and stop being such a [PROFANITY]in pussy

Hopefully it's really obvious that THAT kind of comment wouldn't be acceptable! BUT it also wouldn't be acceptable *anywhere* on the site. I don't intend to let the non-sensitive section succumb to such savagery either.

Unfortunately, these interaction styles are things that some people have and other people don't. They can certainly be learned to some degree, but why would you even want to be in a place where you had to essentially put up an act and behave unlike yourself just to fit in? The whole point of me creating two separate sections is so then nobody has to change who they are, or to fear 'doing it wrong' or anything like that.

I understand that some people like to give and receive things like comment number two there, and that's fine. I'm not saying it's a 'bad' comment. I've noticed that many people have a strongly negative reaction to people who react badly to those kinds of comments, or negative feelings about comments that aren't as 'helpful' as that one is.
It's just that people like me feel worse from things like that because they dismiss and question my feelings, no matter how well-intentioned they are (though I think I'm a particularly special case because I've been on the receiving end of SO MUCH of it that I've really developed a sensitivity for it), while comments like the first one make me feel better. I don't want to own a site where I have to avoid reading certain comments for fear of frustration, or where reading replies to the things that I write is some kind of gamble.

Hopefully this further explains what I mean when I talk about the 'sensitivity' required for that particular section of the new site.