I've had enough of working on the storyline. The more time I spend on it, the more dilemmas I face. Since the mod's inception, I had as many as four endings in mind, each with its own set of problems and logical fallacies. When I was about to finalize the story, I started to think that any of the other three alternate endings would fit my campaign better than the one I was about to deem final. But it's time to move on and let the past behind. I won't put any more effort in the storyline unless I discover some continuity problems that I must address, or at least sweep under the carpet and hope no one will ask about it. There'll be no more dilemmas, no more long hours of ineffective brainstorming. Being stuck at one phase doesn't foster development, not even in the remote sense of the word. It's now all about writing intelligence entries, briefings, dialogs; polishing and bugfixing the already existing missions; and most importantly, making all the missions that remain.
Missions and Campaign
There will be two branches in the final version: One is that I've always called the "military branch", the other is the "character branch". The player must choose either branch midway in the campaign, at a place where the player's character, Wade Warren, indeed faces with a choice. As soon as you have chosen a path, there is no turning back. The "military branch" focuses on major events that shape the history of the two warring races, placing the player character in the role of a cog in the machinery. Events that unfold will mercilessly change the course of history. The "character branch" will place Wade Warren in its focal point: his desires, dilemmas, and solutions. He starts off as a rookie, but becomes an esteemed member of the Solarian Navy by the end of the campaign - but at what cost! (It's very difficult to talk about these branches, even in outlines, when you don't want to spoil it.)
Currently, there are 33 playable missions on the campaign outline. Some more may be added to add more depth to the storyline, and some others may get cut to ensure the flow of my storytelling. I plan to include the missions that I cut as standalone missions, along with other noncampaign missions that I FREDded just for the sake of it. 30 missions are currently at a favorable stage of development, meaning that they are well playable, with mission goals, directives, briefings, in-mission messages.
In terms of mod assets like models, effects, I have nearly finalized them. There are some graphical enhancements to make for ship textures, and some minor table alterations regarding the ship and table statistics will take place. Currently, the most radical change I have in mind is to change the basic weapon's color from FreeSpace-ish purple to cyan. I hope this indicates that I'm mostly done with balancing. Recently, I have come to realize that the nebula background images I made are more lacking than I thought. I decided that I will use Lightspeed's nebula pack, which is by far the most popular nebula pack for FreeSpace Open.
The community has differing views on what the term means, so first let me define what I mean by writing. Writing is the quality of how effectively the story is conveyed through text messages such as briefings or pilot conversations. Grammatical correctness such as syntax, word choice, and spelling are also in this domain. Some people might treat story development and writing synonymously. In my understanding, story development is the process of drafting up character and story outlines, making sure that there will be as few inconsistencies as possible, while writing entails only what can be read. There's little doubt from my part that this aspect of the mod that's in a dire need of further improvement. Most of the writing in the missions are placeholders, and thus subject to change. I wanted to settle on the story's details before attempting to convey it as effectively as my writing skills enable it. Also I'm not a native speaker of English, and that makes the writing process all the more difficult.
So you are almost done? good something more to play around with!
Hey, if you want you can send me one of the nebula images you've made, I can try making it look better if you want.
If you want to give it a shot, just pm me.
"Almost done" is early to say. I have to create those few missions that are left, test all the missions as a campaign multiple times, and there's the writing part.
Thanks for the offer of assistance. I'll consider it.
PM me if you want someone to check the grammar of the script/ conversations. Happy to go through it although your English seems pretty good to me...