This is a tricky issue to debate, and a bit of a rant, but.. what really is the future of Chaos?
I am realistic enough to know that Chaos themed games will never prove as popular as mainstream games. I feel the gameplay and this style of game is really great. I also see that it is often talked of favourably in games magazines like Edge, and GamesTM. But despite this, I can’t see new players embracing the game or being at all interested due to the dated gfx, antiquated user interface and lack of modern features and effects. Sad perhaps, but that’s how it works in the games world..
And what I really want to do, besides making Chaos even easier, fun and better, is to make it more popular!
Even though I appreciate all the support and comments here, the Chaos community is somewhat fickle with long periods of inactivity on the gooey blob group, and no central site to keep things current and active. I tried to do this with forums and blogs on my homemade zunked site, but I found it too difficult to maintain while designing and programming the game. I don’t want to see Chaos die, yet games like X-Com and Laser Squad Nemesis are proof to me that this genre can be reborn and brought to a new generation. And why not? Chaos is great fun as many people here know..
Hence Chaos Groove of course. I’ve wanted to do a version of Chaos that bridges the divide between the past and the future, but how do I go? I remember reading on the gooey blob yahoo group that some people there didn’t like Chaos Funk. There is nothing wrong with that of course.. but did they not like it for the zooming? No.. The gfx? No.. The AI? No..
What they didn’t like about it was that it was mouse controlled. They wanted keyboard controls..
And I thought to myself, man, you’re living in the past! Chaos is one of those games that is perfect for mouse controls, why would you blind yourself to modern advances in this way? I know some people have hacked the original spectrum version to fix bugs, and add new spells when playing under emulation. That is something that on one level I admire, and on another just think it’s a waste of time since the rest of the emulated hardware (and hence the game) is too limited for modern tastes.
Chaos is not perfect, or untouchable. It has bugs, problems, poor gfx and a bad user interface. I am all in favour of keeping the gameplay, expanding it and improving it, but I also have no problem with totally replacing the gfx, sound, user interface and effects.
So, what is Chaos’s future? Do I try to appease the gamers who want a completely faithful remake (something I already tried to do in Chaos Funk) and provide traditional options and gfx (and more work), or do I try to even more fully embrace the future and make Chaos popular again?
For the more modern focus I would more than ever need the assistance of talented graphic artists, musicians and designers. Something I have not had much luck with in the past unfortunately. Whatever happens I will finish Chaos Groove to have all the features and options of the original (it’s not far off that already), and then take it further. But exactly how much further can I take it without support of people talented in different areas than myself?
I guess I’m feeling a bit frustrated by what I’d like to acheive and what I can do on my own. Yet, the programming side is not really a problem to me as you’ve seen by my progress on this little blog..