Post build review
With 0.986b making the rounds, I've decided to take stock of my situation, and see what needs the most attention next. I'm pretty sure more story will feature in the next build, so I'm mostly looking at what else might need work.
For most of the day, I was triaging my bug/feature list. There are some 500 items on it, and so far, there's an average effort of about 3-6 hours of work for each. There are about 60 work days between now and mid July (my target finish date), or 480-600 working hours, depending on whether I work 8 or 10-hour days.
Doing the math, that probably means I only have time for 100-200 items on that list. Or roughly 1 in every 4.
This doesn't account for any time spent working on story, which based on past experience, is about 1-2 weeks per major encounter (like the ATN). It also doesn't account for time spent working on new bugs that arise, answering emails and forum posts, and administrivia (contracts, vendors, build uploads).
This is purely back-of-the-napkin math, but we may be looking at more like 50-100 items from that list, if I want to do 2 more major encounters. In other words, I may be entering a mode now where I have to realistically ignore 80-90% of remaining wishlist items and bugs.
I'm going to have to get pretty selective.
It bothers me to leave so much on the cutting room floor, as there are way more than 50-100 ideas worth putting into the game. Of course, there's way more than 2 more major encounters worth adding, as well. Way more everything, if I'm being honest.
On the other hand, Flash is almost bursting at the seams trying to fit all the crap I've loaded into it. The Linux Flash projector grows more outdated each day. Modding is still a pipe dream. I'm really ready to move on to a more powerful system.
Why am I saying this? Well, partially to admit to myself I have to set reasonable goals. I just did these calculations now, after a day of estimating and prioritizing tasks. This is the first hard, cold look I've had at the numbers in a while. And there's way less I can realistically do by this summer than I hoped.
Tomorrow is going to be a writing day. Just me, a notebook, and some unhealthy amounts of coffee. I'm going to see if I can map out my expectations for these remaining 2 encounters, and make the most of them.
Monday, I'm taking the day off. Similar to what I did with the 0.985b launch, I worked mostly 10-hour days for a few weeks in a row leading up to the build, so a long weekend after the build will help refresh me for the next round.
After that? Bunker down and get some more plot added, and figure out which 50 bug fixes and features I want to add the most.
It's going to be a grueling dash to the finish line.