Well I have to admit something. My partner Roger dug around and found www.wow-one.com, the free World of Warcraft Vanilla version of WoW. Vanilla referring to the original pre-expansion WoW that many of us got hooked on so many years ago. I played semi-hard core over the years. usually I'd play an expansion, get my favorite rogue to the level cap and get bored and quit.. this usually lasted for awhile, but Mists of Pandora was the last straw in terms of the continued simplification and devaluing of prior efforts in previous expansions..
So I thought that's that. Blizzard had managed to drive the game into an completely unenjoyable experience in spite of my hope to continue sinking more unproductive time into it and feed my addiction that over the years could see a pretty much proportionate increase in playing and decrease in productivity.
So that's been my story over the last few weeks. I tried to keep up appearances of productivity. I did get client work done, but I have other projects going on that I've been teaming up with folks to develop on the side and those projects just didn't get my full attention that they deserve and for that I apologize.
Yesterday, I uninstalled my Mac WoW client and I gotta tell you it was incredible. I didn't like the person I was having to be in order keep on my computer to finish that Scholo instance or UBRS run. closed out a few lingering auctions, I have 1100g on my mule and bam, in the trash. I could tell an incredible difference in my ability to refocus and get some much needed work done.
Then Roger, my developer partner found Freenix, where some folks had figured out how to get original wow servers and clients working. I was reluctant at first, but seeing Roger get into it and my own fond memories of pre-expansion wow lead to me getting into it. I did and it wasn't long before I was hooked a few weeks ago. I mean really. No subscription fee, no client cost. Hard to resist trying it out. I still don't know they managed to pull it off. I can understand how they could crack a client to work, but servers are not something you just download and tinker with.
I know no one from Blizzard reads this, but I understand they've made attempts to shut this down and they have every right too, however the servers are very unstable and there are a lot of frustrating moments. Many players I've chatted with would be glad to pay to play official Blizz servers of vanilla and for that matter any variation. I know I enjoyed Tanking with my DK in WOTLK.
I realize they might be concerned of splitting the user pool but they could just make it an added feature for current subscribed members to encourage and require expansion purchases if they really want to push the money angle although I think that might do more harm than good. However I think what they would find is that the people playing these servers were lost a long time ago. Its the hard core fans that first made the game the hit it became. It was the gradual changes and pandering to more and more people to keep subscriptions up that drove many players away never to return.
However, for the sake of my productivity, I hope Blizzard never does it :)
In other news I'm continuing to work in C2 and find it a joy. I've had to wrestle with a few concepts to work as I like, but I get more and more comfortable with the environment and am able to make some really cool things happen. I found it interesting that you can even open up Game Maker and GameSalad project files to get objects from the game. It's not that big a deal though as I could see it was a very hollow port of one of my existing projects, but it was still cool to see the scenes so I could see a game with lots of scenes might find it helpful.
Some of the big successes I had over the last week in C2 were things like getting Masking to work properly. it took more time than I would have liked to spend on it, but understanding it now, it's really great. The other big was the ability to make a custom mouse cursor and mouse over cursor change.
Quicksilver is also shaping up nicely. The one good thing that came from playing WoW again was that Roger and I realized that we really need some kind of crafting / professions made available to allow players to create / sell things / Auction House for income and upgrades. We came up with a good system that's not nearly as complex as WoW and other MMO's yet it still has a feeling of something organic. Now it's a matter of getting more time into Quicksilver to get it polished up a bit more. Most of the functionality is in place, the biggest issue is getting all of the views to look right on iOS and Android devices.
I'm hoping to also do some tests with the Midi plugin someone made for Construct 2 to see if I can make a World's Fastest Drummer Drumometer app for iOS/Android and others through C2. I won't do this till February though as I have some client work I need to get completed first.
Also my last GameSalad game that isn't approved for the Tizen app store has been resubmitted with a video link to demo how the app works. I'm not sure that 3Start Trainer was understood by them. Either that or there is an issue with the accelerometer which, if that's the case I can let GameSalad know to look into it. I suspect though that the way the bug read, they just didn't know what to do with the device when the go gun fires.
Looking forward to the week ahead. I have some good assets to work with to get this client work complete. Once it's done I look forward to share it with the world, assuming the client doesn't mind.
My wife has been kind enough to let me slip out for a few hours this morning before she heads off to work. Holidays usually mean good news for most, but being someone who works from home, when holidays happen it means no school or sitters so I'll be full time dad today and this evening. Tomorrow will be business as usual and I look forward to that.
I love spending time with my boys though, especially now that I don't have the urge to get that next tier item or chance for epic loot. It's nice to be back.