So, the game was sped up with assembly routines, it was revealed to the world, or a handful of people at CoCoFEST!, so what do we do for an encore? Abandon the project appearantly.
While I was happy some of the additions had sped things up, I felt that the most recent changes left me in a position where I really couldn’t move any further forward.
When these assembly routines were pitched to me, the idea was, they were going to end up being education opportunities, where the source code would be gone over, and we could do a show and tell on CoCoTALK! but, the “next steps” were never brought forward to me, and I didn’t really push or pull to get them either.
I ended up feeling a little defeated and frustrated with the current state of the program. Now, what I could have done, was to just go back a few versions, to one that was still in my ability to control and comprehend, but I didn’t. I could have reached out to ask for the help and guidance on the latest assembly changes, but I didn’t. I chose to just get frustrated and “take a break for a while”, which, at this point, has been about two years.
TCA “Text Cosmic Aliens” a proof of concept social experiment
Sometime during the two year break from the original CoCo Cosmic Aliens, I spun up a proof of concept “TCA” or “Text Cosmic Aliens” to test doing a text only version of the game, which is actually more similar to the original MS-DOS version which was based on the IBM advanced text “Graphics” characters that made up the aliens, bombs, etc.
So, a simple version was created, a proof-of-concept was established, and, a copy of that was given out. The copy of that was then actually enhanced a few times, ultimately compiled, and then released to the public, and again, I felt myself in another frustrating scenario, something I started got away from me, and that feeling of helplessness and frustration set in, and again, contributed to me taking a break.
Again, not trying to bad mouth anyone here, just catching up on things that have happened over the past few years, and the “guilty party” in this story has always been me. The assembly changes offered were nice things, they just din’t work out the way I expected, and I didn’t do anything to try and fix it, just rage quit.
The TCA evolution, by someone completely not me, was also something I wasn’t mad at the person for, actually more upset with myself, because someone other than me had taken more interest and initiative in what was “my project” and ended up cranking out a better version that what I had originally thrown together, but, I did feel a little deflated from the process, and it also led to the extended break, just a flood of regret for not having the project in my own hands, under my own control, and my own frustrations and feelings of personal failure were really the worst part.
Take away lessons:
Don’t ask for or accept help on your own pet project, just do it, the best you can, but let it be yours. Once it’s done, and you officially release it to the world, whatever happens happens, but, during the development cycle, keep it in-house.
Don’t give out source code for other people to play with, if you might end up getting upset that they take it further than you did and release it themselves. Keep that to yourself, and release it yourself, once it’s done.