April « 2016 « Tidepool News

After five days of rest, I woke today with a new plan for finishing Tidepool by year’s end. Each weekday, I’ll put in two development hours and one Let’s Play hour, with no work on weekends and a week break every five weeks .. hopefully, a better balance between rest, billable income, and Tidepool.  A full sixth of the schedule was trimmed.

Given this new schedule, I’ll release Alpha 4 in July, Alpha 5 in October, and Beta 1 by New Year’s Eve.  Three months of work spread over eight.

Today during our first Let’s Play Tidepool episode in months, Isabel drew three new characters for her gotta-find-em-all game she’s working on.

Subscribe to our channel to see new episodes.

(last kickstarter update)

Well, folks, we tried.  A warm-hearted thank you to the 69 backers who pledged $5031. Because we didn’t reach the goal, we’ll get none of it. Your cards won’t be charged.

In retrospect, I’d make a better “ask” video, with gameplay and bullet points in the beginning before the personal ask. I’d also make it clear the drawings in the game are intentionally done by amateurs, since this encourages young kids to draw. Lastly, I’d pick another category than “video games”, since this clearly was not our crowd.

Live and learn. Since we weren’t funded, we won’t finish Tidepool this summer. Working weekends, I hope to finish by the end of the year.

Please signup to follow my progress and get announcements. You can also follow me on Twitter or like us on Facebook. To really deep dive, chime in on TIGsource.

We’re honoring the rewards, so let me know your Tidepool username by messaging me here or through our contact page. You don’t need to download to get a username.

Thank you for your faith in Tidepool.

Take care,
Tim

With less than five days left and only 25% of the goal raised, it’s very likely we won’t get funded. There’s typically a bump at the very end, but unless something crazy happens like getting featured on Boing Boing, our campaign will fall short.

This means Tidepool won’t get finished this summer. If I work weekends all year, I may be able to finish by the holidays, though more likely it’ll take another year.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to our 64 backers. Raising $4500 is impressive, though Kickstarter is all-or-nothing. Your credit cards will not be charged. We’ve decided to honor the gifts anyway, as they cost us nothing.

If you’d like to get further Tidepool announcements, be sure to signup if you haven’t already. We send news every month or so, along with release announcements.

Ah well, what can I say? We tried our best. With 4000 page views and 1600 video plays (20% of them finished), we had ample exposure to raise the needed money.

My guess is that Tidepool wasn’t a good fit for Kickstarter’s “video game” category, especially as a free game aimed at kids. Our video at the top could have been better. Live and learn.

My best to you and yours. May we meet someday in game.

Take care,
Tim

Special thanks to our most recent backers:

  • Dave Crossland
  • Chabane Maidi
  • Jim Hauser
  • Norman Girardot
  • Philomena
  • Bob De Schutter
  • Jamison Selby
  • Karen North
  • Tracey McCabe
  • Ryuichi Nawamura
  • Joshua Minchew
  • Michael Maiden
  • Naming is Hard LLC
  • Avigail Snir
  • Adriane Kuzminski

Every week, a group of five grade-schoolers from Seattle play Tidepool together with the express purpose of breaking it. Over Skype, I hear them trying what I’d never intended, yelling out things “Tim, Tim, I can’t type a K. It closes the box when I type a K.”

Yes, these kids are practicing QA (quality assurance), which is a vital role in the software industry. Coding seems to get all the attention these days, but QA is arguably the better path to true mastery. Teach kids what works by teaching them what doesn’t.

Here are some sketches they made on Wednesday:

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