Monthly Archives: December 2006

End of the year thoughts

This 2006 was a very busy year for me. Many things happened. I managed to release two Magic Stones expansions, The Ice Queen and Haunted Mines of Vox. I updated some of my old games, adding new interesting features in Universal Boxing Manager, like the new search screen, retiring boxers, new young boxer appearing, and many minor bugfixes and gameplay enhancements. I also made Universal Binary versions of my games The Goalkeeper and Supernova: Galactic Wars.

So yes, was a very busy year, but very rewarding, also because I finished USM2, and started three more projects at same time. I can’t reveal yet the details but can tell you that one is a RPG, another is a nice “tycoon” game, and the last one is an adventure game with manga drawings that I’m making together with Sakura Games.

Oh was about to forget: Happy New Year! 🙂

USM2 1.0 is OUT!!!

Haha sorry about the title and the enthusiasm, but… this has been a very long one!!!

I still remember when I had the idea of making a sequel of my first shareware game ever, Universal Soccer Manager , expecially because wasn’t available on mac platform. I was strongly encouraged by several people, and I started this long project. It was a tough one, the starting date is a “scary” 11th september 2005, but finally today, 21st december 2006, I can say that it’s over – at least the version 1.0!

Indeed as you might know, I have the bad idea of releasing free lifetime updates of my games, like I did in the past with titles like Magic Stones or Universal Boxing Manager, so even if USM2 is out, is not going to end now. I have a long list of new features/gameplay enhancement that I intend to implement over the course of the whole next year 2007.

I’m very pleased how the game turned out, both graphically (the GUI, the fonts, etc) and the engine. For this I must thank Patrice of Phelios, who helped me a lot during the initial phase of USM2 creation. He had the whole engine ready after just a few months – the rest was all my work, but was very simplified from having such a solid system “behind my neck”.

So… what else to say if not “go and download the game now!!!”

PES6 cheats?

…unfortunately YES! The CPU still cheats in PES6. Not in such bad manner as in the previous title, but still…! once you score a goal or two and are winning, your players will start to be affected from “total incapacity mode” disease.

It means that will miss the most basic passes, goalscoring chances (in one match I had Ronaldinho miss 2 penalties… can this be possible?!) and so on. Your defenders also will instantly become slower and weaker than opponent. That is, a player of the height of Maradona could jump and win the ball with heading versus a tall defender like Stam… 😐

Ok ok, some might say “if you always win, where’s the fun??”. Sure that’s true – still when you draw a match where you had 60% ball possession, were leading 2-0 after 1st half, and had 2 penalties (both missed by Ronaldinho as I said above), versus a much weaker team (was playing Brazil – Peru !!!) I don’t know if is still so… fun! 😀

New Magic Stones quests…

As I wrote in this thread in my own forums, I’m evaluating the idea of charging a very small amount of money for each new Magic Stones quest, or maybe for 2 quests at once. Why this change? because I’m starting to realize that providing a “content update” like Magic Stones ones isn’t very viable for me at this point.

When I see other devs, I realize that is very hard, since most prefer to just recycle the same engine (like Spidweb games for example) and add new content (art, characters, story, monsters, items) but they resell everytime as a new separate games. So far I had released 3 new quests for Magic Stones for free, but each one takes some amount of time because usually contains:

  • new enemy avatars – that means new art, description texts, statistics etc
  • new life/spirit avatars – those directly controllable by the user, that beside the above, requires also extra testing to ensure that the special attacks and leveling up works properly!
  • new quest – writing a new story, arranging the “path quest” with the various choices, testing each single battle to avoid making impossible ones (even at highest difficulty setting they should be all winnable)

So as you can see isn’t a “small update” like it happens in other games. I put a poll in forums, but I am definitely thinking that this is the only way I could continue to provide new quests in future 😐

who wants to buy Ronaldinho ?

Good question… who wouldn’t want to buy him? 🙂

So, talking about USM2 transfer… CPU-controlled team do them. Put players on sale. You can buy players now. Last step, CPU players that buys your players! I’m going to put that in the option “transfer difficulty”.

Will mean how hard it is for your coach to buy/sell players – might seem a secondary aspect but it isn’t. Try to win the game without being able to buy better/younger players!

This brought a new aspect I haven’t thought of – finances… so for now everything is automatic, but I’ve already in mind some interesting additions, like a report of earnings from the various sources of income, tickets, tv-rights, merchandise… but for now better just focus on the 1.0 release, that I want to be before Christmas!