Brooks Bishop — August 21, 2012
I want Aeternum to be a good, solid game that any fan of the bullet hell shmup genre can pick up and have some fun with. Maybe even people who aren’t familiar with the type of game. That would be awesome. I like to think I’ve put a fair amount of work into making it polished, balanced, fun and entertaining.
At the same time however, I honestly don’t expect Aeternum to make that big of a splash. The reality is that this will be my first complete released game, and I see it more as a tech demo, and proof of concept that I can engineer and build for a platform release. I don’t think I’m doing anything groundbreaking here. There’s nothing that I believe hasn’t been done in at least a dozen games before. The Touhou Project line of games in particular should be a fairly obvious source of massive inspiration to what you’ll encounter.
So why am I doing this then? My main reasoning for working on Aeternum is to get a feel for my own level of skill as an engineer, developer, and artist. I’m not out to prove that I can create a wholly new form of experience. Not yet, anyway. But I do want to show that I can write a solid work of code that runs perfectly on an established platform, and do so with a level of obvious care for the final product. In essence, I see myself right now as more of a game developer than a designer. Meaning, I think Aeternum will show that I can build a product, and not so much show that I can innovate. But I see this as a positive. I think I have outlines for a lot of good ideas to come that will allow me to flex muscles as a designer instead. It just so happens that for now, I think developing skills in engineering and coding was more important to work on first.
Now as far as expectations, I don’t think that Aeternum will sell well, seeing as how it’s a niche genre on a niche platform in a niche market. If the thing reaches 500 copies sold, I’ll consider it a miracle. But that’s not really what Aeternum is about for me. I would say it’s more about gaining the experience to use in further endeavors. I’ve learned so much about so many aspects of game development that I really consider it a success already. It’s also allowed me to build up a code base of my own that will be infinitely useful for future projects. So whether Aeternum does well on the market or not won’t matter to me. Financial success, even on the small level of covering my investment and kicking back some to my conspirators would be awesome, but even without that, I think it’s safe to say you’ll be hearing more from me, or even better us.