Alpha Version Up!
25 September 2016 - Scott M. Huelsman
Another year has come and gone since my last update, but this time I can proudly state that my new IQ system is up and running! It's only an "alpha version" and intended to be more a proof-of-concept than a highly polished work of art, but I'm opening it up to anyone who wishes to give it a try (just use our online registration form to get started). In return, all I ask is that you provide some feedback, so that I can continue to improve the system (shooting for a beta release in the Summer of 2017).
The initial alpha version focuses on a single small campaign, itself consisting of four individual quests. The storyline is loosely based on my original "Wizard Reborn" novel I wrote back in 1990s, and a bit grandiose for an initial adventure (in the beta release, I plan to introduce a lot more side quests and substantially expand the scope of the campaign). For now, the player begins the game with a first level hero and will likely acquire a level or two before the end of the campaign.
At this point, it's time to open up the IQ "vision" to the masses and see what comes of it. I've been through this before--spending huge amounts of time on something I'm passionate about only to see it fizzle and die--so this time around I'll only move forward if there's truly an audience out there who wants to see more of what I'm doing. Accordingly, I don't plan to work on IQ a whole lot over the next few months, instead focusing on what others have to say about it and ultimately making a determination as to whether the vision is worthy of moving forward. So, please give this initial alpha version a try and we'll go from there!
Slow but Sure
4 October 2015 - Scott M. Huelsman
Wow, almost a whole year has gone by since I last updated InfiniQuests. I got really busy at the beginning of the year converting all my DNN 6 sites to DNN 7 and was only able to return to IQ in the spring. Then, my wife's DJ/wedding business took off and I spent a lot of time helping her do weddings and shows all over Wisconsin (and that won't end until November). I've also spent the last few months going up the WordPress learning curve and developing several sites in that. And, of course, I continue to manage my DNN client sites along with a full-time job and playing basketball three times a week. Whew!
Despite all that, I am making progress with IQ. The client interface has long been completed and I've spent the last six months working on the underlying code that drives the player experience. It's tedious work, of course; playing a DM and simply accepting commands from a human player is far easier than developing the database structure, stored procedures, .NET programming code and associated text and graphic assets to simulate the experience online. I will say that there are times when the whole thing seems so overwhelming and I have to step away from it for a few days (or weeks) and reflect. And then there are wondrous distractions such as Sword Coast Legends that's due out in a few weeks (and yes, I already purchased a copy). Naturally I'm intrigued with the DM component of that game, but from what I've seen so far it's nothing like IQ.
So, I'm still moving forward, slow but sure. I'm knee-deep in combat development right now and hope to have that done by the end of the year (along with shop interactions). My plan is to spend the first three months of 2016 developing an initial adventure and have an alpha version ready to go sometime in the summer of 2016.
Player Mockup Complete!
26 October 2014 - Scott M. Huelsman
I've developed a full mockup of the player interface with which to start building the game. The mockup doesn't "work" of course, but it clearly demonstrates my vision for the player component of the RPG, Further, the various Bootstrapped elements DO work so it's possible to click on elements such as hero names and invoke the associated modal. The overall presentation works pretty well on mobile devices as well; there's a LOT of vertical scrolling, but I'm happy with how it works (especially the accordion panels).
Next, I intend to start building the administrative interface, where authors and developers will interact with a series of online forms to set the data needed to drive the game. These forms will be an assemblage of DNN modules, one for each broad element needing to be managed (such as characters). My intentions are to build administrative forms as I need them in order to start enabling functionality within the player interface, so after developing some basic forms I'll likely begin with the characters form (that will drive and manage both player characters and the NPCs that they recruit).
First Step of a Thousand Miles
20 September 2014 - Scott M. Huelsman
My first site update for a project I've just begun. It's already been a long journey for me, but if this project remotely accomplishes what I'm intending, the journey has likely only begun.
I got into playing Dungeons & Dragons as a senior in high school, and looking back it was quite the influence. I spent four years serving my country in the U.S. Air Force, got my bachelor's degree in environmental science, spent over six years in the environmental industry before writing a novel, developing it as a "MediaNovel" and ultimately becoming a web content and application developer (which I've been doing professionally since 1996). Yet throughout it all, I've had a thing for role-playing games (or, more specifically perhaps, computer RPGs). From playing (and developing) those wonderful Commodore-64 RPGs in the 1980s to anxiously awaiting the imminent Dragon Age: Inquisition (and having just completed a new RPG concept I was calling "DogmaRPG"), computer-based RPGs are in my blood and will likely always remain there.
Working on my DogmaRPG system over the past few years, I came to recognize that I needed to go far beyond that effort and try to build a system that anyone--player, author or developer--could become a part of, contribute to and ultimately help make successful. To my knowledge--and I've been periodically searching the Internet for years--nobody has yet developed a single-player, persistent world, browser-based RPG system that encourages authors to contribute their own quests/storylines, allows players to enjoy that work and gives developers a place to hone their craft (and if that can all be done while encouraging marketers to throw some advertisement money at the system, all the better). I think there are thousands of like-minded folks out there who are passionate about computer RPGs, recognize that the Internet is a great place to collaborate, build and promote, would enjoy more "old school" games that are less eye candy and more imagination, and if a financial reward element can be integrated to reward both authors and developers, again, so much the better.
So, I'm beginning a quest of my own to build a common infrastructure for players, authors and developers to join together and contribute to something very cool. I know the path ahead will be quite long, but I've always been about the journey itself as much as the destination and I'm sure the effort will take me in a positive direction.