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2007-03-10

Recap 2007

Let's recap what's happened so far...

Fall 2002
(Year 1)

After watching the RPG Maker community grow for a long time, I finally took interest and started seriously making my own game.

It would be called...

I originally had 12 elements...

Wind Water Ice Fire
Light Nature Lightning Darkness
Earth Gravity Phase Time
Balance


People laughed at my apparant n00bishness.
"There are only 8 elements, dumbass."

The idea behind it was:
12 nations, 12 races, 12 elements, 12 Gods

Races:
    Aven (Wind) (bird-people) Merfolk (Water) Trolls (Ice) Goblin (Fire) Human (Light) Elf (Nature) Centaur (Lightning) Shade (Darkness) (shadow-people) Dwarf (Earth) Werefolk (Gravity) Fey (Phase) Felid (Time) (cat-people) ---------------------------- Draconis (Balance) (angelic-people)
I just now realized, that (lol) that name sounds just like Draconian, the angelic race from Escaflowne. I hadn't actually seen any episodes of Escaflowne until several years later.

Background:
In the course of your studies you have uncovered an ancient manuscript which alludes to a 13th race and element. The resulting attempted cover-up leaves you intrigued enough to investigate what happened to this alleged 13th race.

2003
(Year 2)

I cranked out several areas in RPG Maker and wrote the the spell system by then. While doing that, I started a trend in my design that would lead the game's premise for several years.

Dual Spells...
I was ecstatic. My original concept of having just 10 spells per element that you could learn (5 offensive, 5 defensive) that I had already completely written out and implemented was set to minor importance in the game's magic system. What mattered most to the player after that revelation was to collect all 264 dual spell cards. (132 invoker, 132 enchanter) I spent several months thinking up and writing down dual spell effects for every combination of my 12 elements (Balance had no "spells", at the time it was just a god-like power you obtain close to the end of the game that you could use on stuff)

I got all 264 dual spells conceived and written down. (I've still got the list of spells somewhere)

I now had a total of 380 spells written out.

The 13th Element was meant to use a tactical battle system at this point, so the area-effects I wrote for many invoker/enchanter spells would work the way I intended.

I was a fool.

I kept going. Not content with a mere 12 elements, I set my designs higher.

16 elements...

I began writing the single spells and dual spell combination cards for a grand total of 400 spells.

2004
(Year 3)



Wind Water Ice Fire
Light Nature Lightning Darkness
Earth Gravity Phase Time
Balance Mind Soul Essence


The game was still called "The 13th Element". There were still 13 races and 12 gods and 12 nations, but the Draconis were God-like anyways, so I rationalized it by saying that control over the Balance was simply not the full extent of their abilities.

Time passed... I became tired. I was so close, I had written nearly 350 spells in total.

I was practically burnt out.

I went back through my spell list and noticed that a fair number of them (about 20%) were spells that had identical-effect counterparts in other elements. I was disgusted.

So I changed tactics.

Dual spell cards would still exist, but only for the original 12. I reworked a lot of those original 264 invoker/enchanter spells so they were each unique and valuable to the player.

With that mentality, I went back again to the now 160 single spells I had written. I realized that all of the offensive spells in each element were identical to eachother, they just differed in how much damage they did and what they targeted. So I eliminated the concept of "single spells" entirely. Each element would have one modular default spell that you modified with in-battle options.

I upped the number of elements to 24, then 26. by that time it became pretty silly to call them elements so I started calling them forces. (in no way influenced by Star Wars BTW) The whole "cards" idea faded over time into nothingness. Each force was simply an effect in-and-of-itself that would be harnessed in game in a number of ways. This was thinking actually into the sequel of "The 13th Element" which I would call "Magine's World".

2005
(Year 4)




Things were going well. I was quickly approaching enough completion to release a demo. The tactical battle system still wasn't implemented, but it didn't need to be.

And then disaster struck.

My computer crashed (and burned), requiring me to reformat the whole thing. I lost all the practical work I had done on The 13th Element that wasn't stored online. (and that mostly just the images you've already seen above)

I took a bit and regathered my thoughts and re-evaluated my life.

During that time, I looked at all the paperwork I had done.

"...saw everything that he had made, and indeed it was very good."

I had spent 3 years of my life devoting myself and all my energies into its creation.

There was no fuckin' way I was gonna stop. I was goin' to go all the way.

I then realized that "The 13th Element" and "Magine's World" were beyond what the RPG Makers could handle.

Those games died out, and from their ashes rose an idea I had been toying with for quite some time.

Magine Worlds would be an MMORPG to top all the crap I saw in MMOs of the time. There was a lot of crap to overcome.

I changed tactics again. I started thinking with my practical cap on.

Certain responsibilities were put upon me in the RPG Maker community, and I was so flustered that I was picked for the position that I didn't stop to think. I didn't think for a long... long time.

Ideas came out, but not with the child-like enthusiasm I had once thrived with. They were certainly better ideas though.

College came. I decided to major in Computer Science with a minor in Math. I wasn't that good an artist. I could draw diagrams really well (as you can see from the above) but real art was beyond me. I did however have the ability to appreciate real art. Being on the Academic Decathlon team all through High School taught me that. I was also a musician, as I had been playing mallet percussion since the 5th grade, not to mention my mom was a music teacher. I was pretty damn good with a pair (and sometimes two pairs) of mallets in my hands. I ended up with a real appreciation for music. In my mind, all I really needed skill-wise to be ready for the Game Industry was the coding knowledge.

2006
(Year 5)


I was learning C++, and all was good.

During 2005, I learned some ... facts, about the person I took the place of in RM community politics. Disturbing facts. It frequently pissed me off how much I had to make up for that goofball's mistakes, and how all attempts for me to correct them in my own right were perceived as almost criminal to upper eschelon of the RM community.

Fuck'em. Who gives a shit what they think anyways? They probably still lie to themselves and spread to the rest of the community the bullshit they spewed into being about the incident, probably all for the fun of it, the fucktards. Elitist bastards practically run this community. They love the politics... ok, Advo loved the politics, all the other elitist bastards that rode on his coat-tails just loved the power.

I endured a lot while I was in office.

...and then the goofball came back. Mid-spring, 2006.

He wanted his position back.

HELLS no!

But the forum-goers wouldn't stand me keeping him out. I had learned in late-2005 that when he gave me the position, he actually "ditched", not just left. He left me with the bill and no explanation of the terms of that bill, and ditched.

...and I suffered for it.

I was fed up with it. All the politics, all the agony, all the misinterpretation, and most of all, all the BULLSHIT!!!

My college life was taking a turn for the worse, and I was getting a lot of pressure from those real life events.

So I gave him back his position, and soon afterward, vanished. I made 100% certain the site could handle itself without me, and vanished.

Go figure, goofballs don't change their stripes. Soon after he regained his position, the goofball ditched again, this time leaving my former direct subordinate in charge.

I still foot the bill for that site's hosting and domain, that's why this is relevant. (not because I have to, but because I want to, not to mention there were a couple of other things for that site that I put real effort into that I wanted to protect from dying off)

The college situation alleviated over time. I could finally dedicate some genuine quality time into Magine Worlds.

I had an epiphany.
"What the FUCK am I doing with 26 types of magic??? The player isn't going to be able to use all those right off the bat!"

I scaled down, immensely.

Ever since I got into game design roughly 12-13 years ago, I've been facinated with the concept of "full motion" gaming. Back then, the phrase was essentially synonymous with "VR" (virtual reality) games. What I had growing inside me was much bigger... stronger, but more feasible than the idea of "VR". The idea had enveloped me fully back then and left me desperately begging for it as I grew up. I guess you could say Magine Worlds was really born 12-13 years ago. I wanted a magic system that utilized "full motion" to its maximum possible potential.

I wanted to fly, myself. I wanted to shoot fireballs out of my hands, myself. I wanted to be empowered by light itself and control its concussive and holy abilities, myself.

I hated pushing buttons. But... pushing buttons was all there was back then, so I conformed.

My concept of "full motion" magic is the same now as it was way back then, I just know how to put the rapture of the idea into words now.

...that is, now that people have a medium they can visualize it by.

Unfortunately, Nintendo's Wii doesn't appear powerful enough in the accelerometer department of it to handle Magine World's "full motion" magic system, so it's safe again for me to talk about it without fear of the idea being stolen.

That brings us to today.

2007
(Year 6)

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