2015 is upon us and I am very determined to make this the best ADOM year ever (together with my compatriots in Team ADOM).
First of all a quick review of 2014 - where did we succeed and where did we fail?
- We released ADOM nine times (about every 5.2 weeks) in 2014. Which is pretty good. We were a bit irregular in the intervals but that's based on the fact that various changes to the game had a very different complexity.
- ADOM has grown by leaps and bounds. Art by now is awesome (if you ask me), we have a great soundtrack and the NotEye integration has matured so much. As a consequence the UI has gained tons of enhancements and ADOM is a very different game than in 2013 UI-wise (e.g. due to the addition of context menus, a tutorial mode, hints, new message modes, variations on more-handling, a centralized entry point for all player data, new movement commands but also graphical enhancements like spell animations and spell runes).
- We have fixed hundreds of bugs, implemented hundreds of new features (e.g. achievements with lots of thoughts having been put into a fun achievement system, challenge mode) and again worked a lot on stability issues. The downside is that lots of content promised in the crowd funding campaign still is missing as we put so much energy in art, sound and UI.
- ADOM is almost on Steam... we stormed through Greenlighting in record time and we have started the beta test for Steam. On the downside ADOM is not yet available on Steam but by now I am very happy that we missed my deadline for the pre-Christmas release as we probably would have been drowned in all those sales things. Much better to start in January. The ADOM Steam group also is up. Getting prepared for the real Steam release was a totally different beats and cost me quite a bit of money and time to get everything prepared correctly so that afterwards there won't be any legal or tax surprises. Actually it cost several months of time which I totally did not expect when starting out with this. The second time will be much easier though ;-)
- ADOM RPG still is not there, but it's next on my list after we are on Steam. At least there is an unboxing video of an early print as a proof of its existence.
- We increased ADOM visibility by providing ADOM downloads on IndieDB. ADOM even made it into the urban dictionary :-)
- ADOM made it into the top 100 on IndieDB but sadly not much further... room to improve ;-)
- We changed the ADOM version numbering scheme to something easier to grasp for wider audiences (and still keep internal technical numbers). Sounds like a small thing in retrospective but the discussions were quite emotional :-)
- My mother died. This threw me off for months and sapped my strength and motivation greatly. Worst thing to happen to me in many years and I still have pretty grim moods. Cost so much time planned for ADOM progress but sometimes life sucks big time. Nothing you can do about it. Enough said about this.
- www.adom.de will receive a new website. Modern. Beautiful. Krys' design is breath-taking and this is one of the most important things to now get shipped to prepare for the Steam release and to present ADOM as a modern and beautiful game. Coming real soon now!
- ADOM will launch on Steam. We now are in the Steam beta test and I expect another round or two of this to iron out stability issues, performance issues and meet UI requirements of players in a perfect way but it will be worth it. No illusions about this one: Our success on Steam (and following on that on Desura, GOG and maybe others) definitely will shape the future of ADOM as all members of Team ADOM have invested way more time in this than covered by the crowdfunding campaign and we need to secure more funding to keep up a steady stream of improvements and evolution.
- ADOM RPG will be finished after we have launched on Steam. This is the next big one for me. Definitely should get finished in the first quarter of 2015 and shipped in the second quarter (with printing and all).
- Then (probably partially in parallel) the other physical and virtual crowd funding rewards finally will get out of the door with the boxed sets probably being the last thing close to the end of the year.
- Over the course of the year ADOM now mainly will grow content-wise. There are still so many quests and new maps to be added as a result of the crowd funding campaign and by now I'm really itching to move the ADOM story forward and add tons of new content. This will happen all the time and I will put up a new milestone for all the features to be covered by this in our issue tracker.
Looking at this list many of the things are similar to ones planned for 2014 but hopefully this time no new personal disaster will cause me to deviate from that plan. Sorry for the delays is all I can say but there was not much I could do about it and I sincerely hope that you nonetheless are happy about all the things we made happen (instead of being too annoyed about the ones that got delayed).
By the end of 2015 I would like to blog a summary stating "The resurrection has been completed". We'll see if I succeed in this but I hope for less dramatic interruptions than during the abysmal 2014.
So let's move forward! Axes High!