Although things haven’t quite turned out the way I would have liked, quite a few things have happened around here. However, apart from the usual random noise over at Twitter, I’ve maintained a rather low profile, as I don’t like to talk a lot about vaporware and long term plans.
Long story short, Kobo II was too ambitious a project, especially considering that my “in-house tech” (EEL, Audiality 2 and ZeeSpace) was not ready for business by a far stretch when I started out. Things were taking too long, and I had to start taking on contract work to make ends meet, which of course slowed things down further.
I eventually stopped doing contract work, and sort of accidentally ran into a nice, local job instead. (Low level DPI stuff. I hack code that touches your data! ) I figured this would at least give me slightly more time for game development, but I still decided to reschedule things a bit, which in hindsight, has turned out to be the right decision.
I started designing Infilterion, a game with more “retro arcade” feel to it, and 16 bit style pixel art, rather than the procedural/structured ZeeSpace ultra-HD graphics I planned for Kobo II. You’ll be sabotaging bases from the inside, using a small, remote controlled drone. The gameplay I have in mind is some kind of blend of Kobo Deluxe, Paradroid, and Gauntlet.
First, however, my XKobo port, Kobo Deluxe, that I’ve been working on sporadically for too many years now… It’s about time to finish it! I initially intended to stay as true as possible to the original, but now my goal is to turn it into a smoother, less frustrating experience, with a more polished look and feel. The result is Kobo Redux, a commercial game running on a Free/Open Source engine. The engine, based on the Kobo Deluxe code, comes with Free themes, making it fully playable without any proprietary data.
What’s going on?
What’s happening right now is that I’m working on the final tweaks, fixes and features in the Kobo Redux code base (all public on GitHub), as well as the 16 bit arcade style graphics and soundtrack that will come with the commercial release.
What about Kobo II?
Kobo II will be picked up again when I have the time and resources to turn it into something I actually want to release. However, since it uses Audiality 2 and EEL, the work being done on those, for Kobo Redux and Infilterion, helps bring that point a bit closer. I will probably make occasional minor Kobo II releases along the way, just to keep the code base in sync with Audiality 2 and EEL.
Of course, the Kobo II Tech Preview licenses sold so far remain valid! As a small compensation for the huge delay, Kobo II licencees will also receive the commercial version of Kobo Redux as soon as it is released.