Breaking Manoeuvre

The time has come to take a hard, but ultimately realistic decision on Dominium Development.

You may have noticed the gap since the last blog post, as I’ve been away on hols, and also ‘taking stock’ of all my efforts to date and where it’s got me. Yep, you can tell where this is going…

This site went up back in December 2012, and the original Kickstarter was just before that in November 2012. Nearly five years of (fairly) dedicated spare-time, ad-hoc, one man development, and (if I do say so myself) some fairly nifty work being done toward the great vision. However, I’m no idiot – in fact being a very experienced game developer and software engineer (be it ever so humble 😉 ), and I knew that what I wanted to achieve with Dom stood absolutely no chance without some form of funding, and being able to hire other people and bring them on board for code, design and content.

To be frank, my decision to go ahead anyway was sheer bloody-mindedness 🙂 Plus it was a great way to ‘keep my arm in’ with game dev, while my professional life left that industry far behind.

Secretly (the little voice which surfaces from the subconscious every now and then) I was hoping that the ‘keep on trucking’ doggedness, and constant blog updates (and the book(s)) might spin up some form of interest which would gather momentum over time, and allow me to seek other funding avenues after being able to demonstrate some level of interest to potential backers.

Sadly, despite my best efforts and others plugging this on my behalf (I thank you profoundly, you know who you are!) this has not been the case, and I’ve had to take a long hard look at that lack of momentum/interest, versus the effort still needed to even bring a modicum of demonstrable gameplay to anyone for feedback.

While I never expected a flood of followers and/or clamouring hordes – they sure would have been nice 🙂 – unfortunately I simply don’t have the spare time available to generate interest outside of the confines of this blog, so I can’t help my own cause much. Also, the pace of development I can dedicate myself to just isn’t enough to keep generating the flood of ‘interesting posts’ needed to maintain any large scale community interest, even if I had had it. There’s no bitterness here, just a sad sense of resignation.

I wanted to achieve my vision of what I think a free-form space faring game could be, and should be, and I may yet still do that 😀 I’m certainly not closing the door. But I’m going to take my part-time foot off the part-time pedal and chill out, for some considerable time. It’s been ‘full on’ for me for five years, and I need to step away from the vessel for a time. I will certainly tinker with Dom Dev, probably return to Maggy (who was named after the Magratheans btw) but the ‘pace’ of development will basically stutter to a halt, as will the blog updates. I’ll also be stopping the Newsletter, for obvious reason.

So, I felt it only fair to those few who have been following faithfully (Cornflakes, SolCommand, SpaceSimCentral, Troy et al), to step up and state my intention instead of just going into a Communication Blackout or Radio Silence.

I’m not killing off Dom, far from it. I’ll be doing stuff as and when, I may even post here and there. I’ll also be certainly wrapping up Book 2 of When Stars Fall soonish. But, as far as ‘Dominium’ the game is concerned, it’s all definitely being put firmly on hold for the foreseeable future. If some peculiar turn of events leads me to thinking ‘there’s something in this after all’ then I’ll be back on the case like a shot, trust me!

So for now, I bid you farewell and leave you with the wise words of a great bard…

How lucky I am to have something that makes saying Goodbye so hard.

  • Winnie the Pooh

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Author: Mak View all posts by

11 Comments on "Breaking Manoeuvre"

  1. sorifiend August 15, 2017 at 2:43 am -

    Thanks for the update. It has been a great ride watching your progress and different accomplishments and logic processes applied in DOM, so thanks for keeping us up to date for so long. I hope you can make the most of your chill out time now and just relax and enjoy things with all that extra time!

  2. Mak August 15, 2017 at 8:54 am -

    Cheers for the well wishes sorifiend 🙂 It’s been fun, definitely!

  3. zikzak August 16, 2017 at 1:44 pm -

    Iy might be time to let the community help, don’t you think?
    Well, I can understand you want to keep your baby. You spent so many days on.
    But if one day you think “enough is enough” then consider letting the FOSS continue the great work. For all of us who wanted your title to come to fruition.

  4. Mak August 16, 2017 at 7:49 pm -

    See, zikzak, now you’re just making me feel bad 😉 (joking!) If it had been using an available SDK, say UDK, or even Unity, I would be _very_ inclined to slap it on github and seeing what happened. The ‘but’ is it’s all using my own engine, which I’d be less inclined to make OS (at the moment anyway) and even so isn’t really in any fit state I’d like to put out there. Anyway, with _that_ said, I _may_ consider going OS if I were to choose to abandon Dom entirely – as there’s clearly no point having my ‘own’ engine sat there if it’s never to be used… 🙂

  5. Andrew Copland August 18, 2017 at 10:38 am -

    Sad to hear this but totally understandable.
    I was hoping to read more about your planet rendering/generation and to get to play the work you’d already done.

    Is there any scope for a current state release so we can try it out? Or do you feel that it’s too raw to be fun still?

    Perhaps instead of going it alone you could attract some other developers?
    I’m not convinced that open sourcing it would do that, I was thinking more of persuading someone else to help out with the coding side. If you planned to eventually make some money (sale, Free-to-play, however) then the reward doesn’t have to be up front it can be for the future.

    Whatever you decide to do though it’s been really interesting reading your journey so far. So thanks for that 🙂

  6. Mak August 18, 2017 at 3:07 pm -

    Thanks Andrew! You may yet hear more on Maggy going forward, it’s a nice thing to tinker with and I may yet write up that promised article on the techniques I’m trying. I was on a drive to get something ‘tangible’ into peoples hands at long last, but Dom as it stands is most assuredly ‘unreleasable’ – digging into my Bag of Analogies; it’s a bit like a kit car with parts from various different cars in. Sure there are enough parts to make a car, but they need assembling, and even if you did, it wouldn’t quite work as you’d expect, parts would have to be swapped out, upgraded, and so on… I’ve skimmed by Pioneer a few times in the past, and I know you have a good dev community behind it. I may ping you about it if you don’t mind? as I’m curious to know how it rolls with Pioneer.

  7. Andrew Copland August 22, 2017 at 4:31 pm -

    Sure thing Mak!
    We have an IRC channel as well as the dev’ forum (https://pioneerspacesim.net/forum/). It’s best to hop onto IRC as usually registration for the forum is locked down to avoid bots, then someone can open it up whilst people register.
    IRC is a free for all where we sometimes discuss Pioneer 🙂
    The usual suspects on IRC are:
    impaktor,
    laarmen,
    nozmajner,
    ecraven,
    fluffyfreak (myself)

    And happy to answer questions.

    I think we could do better because whilst we have a nice community, and about ~2000 downloads per-month worldwide, we don’t make as much progress on things are you’d expect due to having no real plan or goal.

  8. Cornflakes September 11, 2017 at 4:53 pm -

    im sad about it, although it wasnt quite unexpected 😛
    but yay the books are going on 😀
    ( i may have to read the corrected version of book 1 at some point as well..)

  9. Mak September 11, 2017 at 8:28 pm -

    I’m gutted by your lack of faith Cornflakes… 😀 joking of course! Yes, sadly, the writing may have been faint, but it was definitely on the wall. Still may rub it off yet though… Book 2 is coming along (slowly). I’m aiming to have it’s final (rough) draft complete by the end of the year. I’ll obviously update this blog when it hits the floor 🙂 Cheers for the thought Cornflakes 😉
    Also cheers Andrew, my timeline is definitely along the lines of a particularly esoteric Dr. Who plot – so bear with… no breath held, etc. 😉

  10. Cornflakes_91 September 15, 2017 at 12:00 pm -

    “Esoteric drwho plot”
    Inconsistent with itself and everything thats even vaguely smelling of physicy?

    *runs fast*

  11. Mak September 15, 2017 at 4:47 pm -

    LOL

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