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Johnathon

"Space Quest: Roger Wilco and the Outer Edge of Earnon"

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It doesn't need to be a fancy shmancy website. My KQ2SCI website was very very simple. Just information and screenshots/videos as I chose to update. It's offline now, but I'm trying to put it back together again so people can find it online. It's nice for projects to have a home. Makes it easier to link to and spread awareness.

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I agree. There will be a home for it this November. I should also take advantage of whatever free search engine entries that new account offers, and try to spread the awareness some more.

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It looks great and it's refreshing to hear that you're working on the end-game already. Still lots of clean-up and beta-testing to look forward to, but that jump from production to post-production is always a satisfying milestone.

 

It's also good to hear that you're paying attention to pacing. This is an often over-looked element in even commercial games (and movies) and I can never stress it's importance enough. I look forward to seeing your finished work.

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let me know if you have trouble finding space. There is plenty on SHP.

I appreciate the offer, but I already setup up an account for a really good deal.

 

It looks great...

 

It's also good to hear that you're paying attention to pacing. This is an often over-looked element in even commercial games (and movies) and I can never stress it's importance enough. I look forward to seeing your finished work.

Yes, I happen to want this game to be as perfectly enjoyable in every way possible, as I always have. I won't be taking any shortcuts in any aspect of design that would lessen one's ability to enjoy it. Pacing, I consider vital. As always, I appreciate your compliments.

 

 

Anyways folks, I've set up a website at the following url. The message board isn't really all that finished yet, in terms of looks and categories, but you can feel free to join so that you may follow progress of 'The Outer Edge' and provide feedback.

 

https://www.theouteredge.org/

 

Oh, and there're just a few pages I haven't completed yet on the site, but I've added some interesting information to read if you're curious about the project.

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Nice. I wouldn't initially worry too much about a forum. Maintaining a presence on existing forums will probably do more for the project. You may wish to announce on SHP's forums, too. It receives more traffic than most Sierra forums.

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The message board, I had mixed feelings about in regards to how public it may be. It has crossed my mind, believe it or not, that my acquiring of very many members would probably prove quite unlikely (unless or until I post a plethera of rare goodies). Not to sound negative, I it's the conclusion I've come to.

 

Furthermore, even if I had(do/will) acquire(d) a substantial amount of members, considering how few there are posting actively in the SQ community as of late, it would likely cause an unnecessary split of attention and/or information between my board and others boards (such as this one), and this is not something that I want or think is helpful.

 

Let me rephrase that now, to make sure it comes across the right way: I dont' find my board to be sufficient enough (at least as it stands) in categories, information, resources, long-term memberships to compare with the JT or other boards, and even if it were the rare case, I don't want and wouldn't want it to.

 

However, since I have the board up regardless, for my team and I to collaborate and work on the fangame, and because I do happen to be in need of programmers and artists, and music designers, and even actors, I didn't think it would hurt to at least make it available and visible to the public, for when anybody happens to be interested enough to register for regular posting. Is there another way of looking about this?

 

And yes, I shall certainly look into advertising on SHP if you suggest it would be helpful. I'll put that on my list for this weekend.

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Collector,

 

Yes, indeed friend. I understand.

 

But (slaps forehead), I'm now realizing I had no idea what you were talking about before when you said "SHP." I'd done a google search, and came up with this place. I'd figured you were just a fan of it, and promoting it. Based on the description, I mistook it for a typical online webspace provider.

 

Now, of course, clicking on the button in your signature, I can see it is your own website hosting Sierra Help Pages. :frusty:

 

This reminds me of when Star Wars episode I came out, and the clerk sent me to the wrong theatre. I walked in precisely as Darth Maul was peering over the village and because it looked so much like the opening to a film, I figured I'd missed only the introductory credits, and when I left the theatre, I thought, wow, 45 minutes, that was kind of short?)

 

 

And, Brandon, not even for team game development...?

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Heh, thanks Chris! I came up with it on the spot. :)

 

NEW UPDATE:

 

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Greetings Space Questers!

 

The time has come for our next update. Phew! It has been a busy past few months for all of us here on the dev team, but despite all this, we're still kicking like mad. Firstly, I would like to introduce you all to our newest member: "Icefoxer," who is a friend of Vroom's as well as a current student and aspiring artist attending the San Francisco Academy of Art! She has offered to work with us primarily (but not necessarily limited to...) as a concept artist for the project, and we are all thrilled to have her!

 

As you can see, via the thumbnails provided above, I have continued to chug away at the screenshots, though this is not the only area I've made progress in. Whenever I get a great idea for a joke, puzzle, plot twist, you name it - I record it. I've also made other minor progress on the basic compositions of some other screens as well. I had hoped to have at least one of these in complete form for your viewing pleasure, but wasn't able to do so by this here update (I'll tell you though, with myself - as with anyone - 75% of the work/time is simply in the benchmarking/sketching, laying out proportions and such (in other words, everything before the coloring and touch up), so you're sure to see these done in the very near future!

 

Personally, I am very satisfied with this progress, considering all the other priorities I've had to attend to. Mind you, I managed all this while attending classes full time, in addition to a half time job. These next three months, unfortunately, are also booked up with college assignments, but come our next update, I'll have a 4-month summer vacation to let loose like mad :)

 

Regardless, we'll continue to chug away. I have a vision, and I know where we're going.

 

a brief P.S. > Every one of those monolith burger tiles in that scrolling screen have been hand sketched, individually (that took up quite a bit of dev time, but anything to get the right amount of detail/atmosphere/perspective), and that facial closeup will look quite a bit more like Roger once it is done being polished. Also, this is a very brief, brief, BRIEF rundown of the progress made in the last few months, the story is really really, REALLY starting to take shape, as are the characters. My team is currently reviewing the script again as we speak, and we're gonna do what we can to get you a playable demo of Day 1 (only about 7% of the adventure, but quite long enough for a demo!) as soon as possible ;)

 

 

The next update will be three months from now

 

 

Sincerely,

 

Johnathon and the Outer Edge Dev Team

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Thank you,

 

but, to answer your question, I'm just using the old MSPaint.exe ;)

 

Of course, for the large facial closeups, I use an actor, paste the photo image in paint, and then re-sketch and color over it by hand (mouse).

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My friend!

 

Excellent it is to see you are following the project. You could say I really enjoy/anticipate enthusiasm from other fans regarding it (perhaps as you anticipate the updates themselves). Just wanted to say, firstly, your interest means a lot to me.

 

I did post a brief note today, on the site, informing that an informative update will be posted by this following Tuesday, May 3rd. I said that because I didn't really have time to say anything else.

 

But, because I don't want to tantalize you, I will tell you beforehand, that it won't feature any new screenie information (there are many GOOD reasons for that). Hopefully, when you read the update this coming week, you'll understand.

 

But the project is still alive, and I am very enthusiastic about it, and I have been continuing to record ideas as they come in, adding them to the grand reservour (sp) that is the "source file(s)" of the Outer Edge. This project is very rich, despite slow progress, and this summer, I hope to complete much.

 

As of now, I'm preparing to deal with many finals, graduation, a move, and a some of a transfer process to university for this coming fall.

 

You will hear from me again soon. Please, do continue to follow us!

 

Sincerely,

 

Johnathon

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NEW UPDATE:

 

To those of you following this website/project: I am still alive! I apologize for being a week late of delivering my 'week late' update. (That's a sly way of admitting I'm two weeks late, while drawing attention to the idea of only "one") Let's hope it won't appear, as it is now, too weak and late. :D

 

(Yeah, I was always particularly fond of SQ5 - catch my drift?)

 

So, here's the news: I have not produced as much as I'd hoped in these last 3 months, but have made excellent personal progress. I'm going to slide just a bit off topic, but follow and you will see how this is good for the project altogether >

 

For you fans who have been following the project for 3 years now, you will perhaps recall the disruption that it suffered that long ago. Well, today I have good news. The priorities that had drawn away so much from its development have been set in order (no, they have not completely disappeared), but they have been set in order.

 

I won't go into grusome detail, but let me just say, to you who will find the relevancy in this, the reason I have not made as much dev progress in the art in the last 3 months is due to the fact that I have been putting my "all" into finishing up an associate's degree I've been struggling to acquire for the past three years - nay, not only to accomplish that, but to secure my spot in a much-desired program for the future years to come. As of this day, I have done so.

 

In the last three years, I have moved three times, changed jobs three times, changed colleges twice; and yet I have received no less than 18 A's and 2 B's (in a wide array of electives ranging from the humanities to the intense maths and sciences.) I have proven versatility, have secured a membership as an alumni w/ an honor's fraternity, and have secured a garaunteed position in a Bachelor of Architecture program with an institution that was rated 11th in the nation for that field of study in last year's DesignIntelligence Magazine. Today, my graduation ceremony begins at 6pm, and I will be receiving a very hard-earned degree (exhaustively hard-earned), with honors designation.

 

I realize this may seem very unrelated, and perhaps like bragging, but I tell you, this is very good for the project. I will learn even more skills that will help polish the quality of the project, and meld myself into a better designer overall. I'll even have internship opportunities beginning the next year or year and a half, and will be able to travel and experience more visual stimulation (which is always good for a dreamer and aspiring artist/story teller).

 

What I've done in these past 3 months has been to secure the next 4 + years of my life. A very worthy effort, I assure you, even at the cost of The Outer Edge becomming appearingly 'crippled' for another quarter of a year. I've also, in between this, had to deal with apartment hunting and planning a move (I'll actually be moving tomorrow).

 

Personally, I feel at times that an update every 3 months may be too frequent, but then... once every 6 months is not frequent enough, so I'll stick to the 3 months. It can be difficult to finalize stuff in such a time, however (I mean, because you can't just keep showing every screen you make - you have to select a few to represent each section, and not give away the whole game's art collection). I became more aware of this when I saw a cute re-posting of my newer, yet unfinished Roger face, by Sledgy, on his forums. I would like to clarify that this screen was never intended to replace the other two I have released, but serves as an additional animation sprite (where it becomes more close-up/zoomed in).

 

I would also like to admit to Sledgy, that I was quite tempted to replace that facial pic with an upclose of Barney the Dinosaur, to go along with the dialogue he decided to add with it, but I was unable to re-upload a photo to replace the location of this one, and was only able to delete it ;)

 

The point is, because I do want to demonstrate high-quality, I think I'll stick to not posting pics anymore when they are not in a nearly finished state. If they're too far from complete, they may give a false impression as to thier purpose, or the quality of this project.

 

And for whatever it's worth, I will also fill you in, there has seldom been a time when, walking down those lengthy steps leading from the science building on campus, overlooking the vast horizon, sprinkled here and there with various tall structures in the far distance: a radio tower, a water tower or two; in the rich, monochromatic orange light of the street lamps, contrasting ever-so-vividly with the bright, darkening blue of the newborn evening sky, that I haven't imagined myself as Roger himself, wandering between the god-like structures of tall campus buildings around me as if they were Xenon City, as I...

 

I am glad to be off for the summer, and I am glad to be back working on this fine project. I hope to complete very much, and as I continue into the future, I will work on it as much as I can. I will not have to be as obsessive about securing a position, as I have already done so, and hopefully this will allow me for free time to develop this fan game, even while I am in university, but only time will tell. Regardless, I press on, and my field of study should compliment quite nicely my ability to elaborate upon and build up this fan game, just as my endeavors in drawing a couple years back helped unleash my talent for the facial closeups I am now able to produce, as well as the rest of my knowledge and ability regarding other aspects of the project's artistic design.

 

Next Update will be in 3 months

 

 

Sincerely,

 

Johnathon and the Outer Edge Dev Team

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Thank you, Jocolloman. :)

 

NOTE: I realize although I'd continued to make updates on the website this past year, I somehow drifted away from including them here and on other forums. I apologize if this has left anybody wondering, and hopefully it did not keep many of you from thinking to visit the site itself the see the updates. Remember, you can always feel free to check out what's going on here

 

December 28th, 2011

 

SPACE QUESTERS!

 

I have some good news, and I have some GREAT news!

 

I’ll begin with the good news…

 

 

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THE OUTER EDGE OF EARNON WILL USE 3D-ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNIQUES TO DERIVE ARTWORK:

 

No, no no!!! This will NOT be a 3D game, it shall remain the classical adventure style and interface. What this simply means is that, utilizing tools available from 3D programs, production of the 2-dimensional backgrounds, lighting/shadowing, reflection, and animation will be incredibly easier from this point on and even more convincing. Imagine not having to redraw every sketch as you imagine it, just to achieve a slightly different angle. View some of the examples below of the experimentation that has been conducted, and you will acquire an idea of what this means for the fangame project…

 

 

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…now, when working on a large area of the adventure, where there are many rooms or screens present which relate to one another, a model of the area need be built only once. Thereafter, camera angle and position keyframes can be utilized in order to take snapshots of these models form different locations/angles. Imagine, for example, if you desired to animate an introduction sequence which scrolled across Xenon City, viewing all its buildings and streets. You could program a camera to do this and take snapshots every so many frames, and then those snapshots can be later traced, colored and textured in a paint program, to acquire the 2D backgrounds necessary for your cut sequence.

 

Or… imagine wanting to cover a portion of the game both in day or at night, or with alternating atmospheric effects. The power of using a 3D pipeline system to support the derivation of these calculations is an immense time-saver. You could move lights in and out wherever you desire, shine different colors on things to see how they interact with other objects in the scene, or even apply a texture effect to an object to get a good idea of how specific surfaces should be later depicted in 2D, as with metal, water, or plastic, for example.

 

This new direction in art development will help the project more than can be expressed in words. And, in case you’re foolishly wondering, “No, this 3D method will not subtract from the uniqueness of the games artwork. The temptation to allow screenshots to become monotonous in their great numbers will be resisted at all costs!” :)

 

 

 

And now… for the GREAT news…

 

 

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AFTER HARD DRIVE CRASH FOUR YEARS AGO, THE OUTER EDGE ENJOYS A MIRACULOUS SOURCE CODE RESURRECTION!!!

 

Yes, yes fans! The unbelievable has occurred. It all began a week or two ago, when I realized my desktop pc (which I’d built back when I was 19), would no longer boot up successfully without shutting itself down due to an overheating/hardware problem (it’d been growing worse and worse over the past year). The 3D progress I’ve just shown you in the screenshots above had become temporarily un-accessible, and I was determined to get them off that hard drive (which, as you can see, I most certainly did). However, as I was going through this process (which required the purchase of an external hard disk cover and the reading of some articles regarding hard-disk recovery utilities, the thought crossed my mind, how likely might it be that I could perform a deep scan that would turn up some really old stuff I’d REALLY forgotten about, and had accepted long ago that it was gone forever…???

 

For those of you who have only been following The Outer Edge of Earnon recently, I will provide you with the necessary exposition in order to comprehend the magnitude of this wonderful achievement of data recovery: You see, this project was begun back in December of 2003, and had slowly developed, until a team was eventually formed in late 2007. The team and I had a great but short run together; as many life issues and worldly circumstances more or less broke the team up and drove SQ:OEOE to a screaming halt. I, in my early twenties (22), had become quite depressed for reasons I will not explain, and it was at that time when I was being called to walk through the door from adolescence to adulthood, that I deliberately erased all the project files shortly before I entered college.

 

I spoke a little with my team members, at least one or two of them, during that April of 2008, but things really didn’t hold together for long. I had almost immediately regretted my upset and having given up on the adventure, and so I was able to retrieve the “majority” of the important stuff from a zip file I’d uploaded into an email account for backup purposes. (Do bear in mind, this file had to be kept small enough to email). The rest, I began to rebuild, very slowly, but college kept development at a near freeze.

 

I had a couple of good development bursts, and you all heard from me quite a bit these past three summers.

 

Now, at this present day, I could not possibly be more pleased to tell you that I have recovered GIGABYTES worth of information!!! The reason this number of bytes is so large is because back in the earliest days of the project, I had literally played through every SQ game, taking snapshots of the backgrounds and of the dialogues, and even of the descriptions of certain areas and objects. I did this because I strive for a great degree of organic transition (or, think of it as coherency) between this fangame and the official other 6 adventures. These image files I had saved as bitmaps. This is one mere example of why there is so much information.

 

But the best stuff I’d recovered is the stuff I’d lost JUST before the “Great Down”, as I call it.

 

For starts, how’sa ‘bout these two images below, which I’d earlier released in very old updates:

 

 

(VISIT WEBSITE TO VIEW FULL SIZED)

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(VISIT WEBSITE TO VIEW FULL SIZED)

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Other things I can’t show you, but will be glad to explain :)

 

First off, fortunately, all this time, because I’d been VERY good about protecting the script via email backups, the script had never suffered anything more than about a paragraph (or one page) of loss, which I still had fresh in my memory, but much of the original penmanship in this precise area had been compromised. The biggest things I’d lost were the most recent “team development chats,” which the guys and I had enjoyed with each other over yahoo messenger between November 10th of 2007 and April of 2008 – of which I have recovered ALL!!!

 

These chats include the latest ideas and innovations we’d collaborated on for the plot of the adventure, and other design areas.

 

In addition to this, I have recovered documents upon DOCUMENTS of information, regarding plot ideas, character ideas, deaths, eggs, YOU NAME IT! You see, although there had been but one single “screenplay” file, many other documents had separately comprised design aspects for other facets of the adventure game project.

 

 

HOW DID I GET THIS LUCKY…???

 

Articles online will tell you that the odds of recovering computer files that had been deleted from your hard drive FOUR YEARS ago are slighter than the odds of winning the lottery. However, I had always been in the habit of having my computer’s drive split into two virtual partitions. Whenever I needed to format and re-install my operating system, the other half of my drive would remain intact with all my files (DELETED AS WELL AS NON). This no doubt protected this old lost information from being forced too deep below the hard disk’s surface after all these years, minimizing the number of “overwrites” that had occurred. Furthermore, because my hard drive was so large, in terms of needed usage (I hadn’t done much heavy, hi-res gaming during my college years) , this allowed for more free space the hard drive could write over, rather than cramming and compressing within the same small amount of sectors.

 

But the recovery was a bit of a challenge. The entire process took about 9 hours; that is, to search through and find the correct files. For the first several hours, I’d recovered bunches of individual and some partially corrupted images and documents, which fueled my excitement to thoroughly complete the search, no matter how long it would take, and eventually, EVENTUALLY… I’d stumbled upon a compressed zip file (quite large in size), which was perfectly intact and which extracted with no trouble. I checked the output folder, read the description of the unzipped folder, ”Fan Game,” and my eyes lit up like a Spiny Alien Thang about to grab an unsuspecting, wandering hero janitor. Every single file from the fan game project had been preserved: EVERY SINGLE FILE, IN ITS ORIGINAL LOCATION IN RELATION TO THE MASTER FAN GAME FOLDER, WITH ALL THE CREATION AND MODIFICATION DETAILS, PERFECTLY PRESERVED IN THEIR ORIGINAL DIRECTORY STRUCTURE!!!

 

And along with the great progress and growth that this project has continued to enjoy over these recent years (despite the adversities), this amazing triumph will just... PHHHHFFFF!!! Forget words!

 

Reading this source code and document details, and seeing my initial plans for latter stages of the adventure, has in a way patched small gaps that had been nearly patched already, but still not completely. I feel almost as though I’m there again, four years earlier, and the feeling and awareness of suddenly seeing what I’d typed – all my ideas and progress – which I haven’t seen in nearly half a decade, has immensely jumped the motivation factor.

 

 

Stay tuned, more great updates to come. This baby’s about to take off and I mean for real. By the way, I survived my first semester at university with a cumulative 3.38, and I’m minoring in digital production, and working under a previous Hollywood special effects master and recipient of an Oscar award. I couldn’t possibly be happier to be where I am this day, and I would say the prognosis for this adventure to turn into everything I’ve ever dreamed it would be, is undeniably positive.

 

 

Sincerely As Always,

 

Johnathon and the Outer Edge Dev Team

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