When I'm not asking for your money, I have interesting things to say about the business.
You've often been talking about retirement. I just had to buy my first pair of bifocals yesterday, and retirement from the software industry is on my mind too. In every RPG game there's a steady increase of stats - your character buffs up, gets physically stronger and more powerful and has more money. I wonder what it would be like on the other side? ...
Maybe your character's DEX, STR, CON would decrease, and you compensate for them with your increasing WIS+CHA+coins. Like say a wealthy industrialist whose power grows with wealth as they age.
Or maybe also WIS, INT decrease as well like someone whose brain no longer works as sharply as it once did and you forget things more. Maybe your coins don't increase as you eat through your retirement savings.
It might make a really unpleasant and irritating game! And we all play RPGs because we're addicted to stat increases! On the other hand, as I play through The Witcher 3, I really don't like having progressed so many levels -- now at level 50 near the end of the game, kind of preferred challenges and balance of the earlier levels of the game.
I get that time marches on, but I still feel like Ultima IV is far from a 'crude and simple' game. And Ultima V in my opinion is still a better ride (and smarter design) than many a modern CRPG. Maybe my rose colored glasses are bolted on too tight, but I don't think it's just that. Nobody (except the CRPG addict) WILL play those games, I imagine, but I don't think nobody SHOULD. (I also think they still have useful design lessons.)
Any plans to bring any of the remasters to iPhone? I’ve really enjoyed playing the Queen’s Wish games on my phone on the bus to and from work! That’s one of the few times I’m able to game these days.
I love your work, been playing since I found a shareware of Blades of exile. I think what you bring to the table is something that is lost for modern generation games. I just finished Geneforge 1 (classic) and the game doesn’t get in the way of your imagination like most modern games do. While some of the decisions I could make were not what I wanted, I felt in control and making my own story, not following someone else’s. I hope we have many more games from you, and I wish I had reached out to you when I was younger so I could have been more inspired and tried the whole development think myself!
7 games including Infestation, you said. So that's 4 Geneforge games, plus three more. Logic brain says those would be the second Avernum trilogy because that's the only way it would easily come out to 7, but those are still relatively recent? As opposed to, say, Blades of Avernum and Nethergate? Pretty pretty please? (I know Nethergate technically WAS remastered, but I'm sure I don't need to tell you why that doesn't count anymore.)
Maybe a weird question- but how does the thought that your current remakes might be again unplayable by 2050 or whenever (past the point where you'll be able to re-remaster them) effect your current work?
"I currently have 7 games, counting Geneforge 2, that I want to remaster."
Oh boy! I hope Nethergate is one of those seven. I would say that one is my second favorite of all your games after Exile/Avernum 3.
Combined with updating the interface and graphics (something that never gets complaints)
I almost never see a remaster that does not make the graphics worse. Most of the classics are loved because they got the graphics so perfect. I was recently watching a video on FF4 which included some discussion of its dozen remakes and remasters and while some of them don't look bad, they are all worse in some way. The steam version for example looks comparable to the original, except for the text font.
What is your opinion on the best way to accomplish long term code usability?
Short term, these new Unity style export your game to every architecture on the planet looks very intriguing, but it is hard to say what that will mean for your code base in 30 years.
I won't be able to back the project this time for technical reasons, but I wish you success, and I will certainly buy the game on Steam when it comes out!
7 to remaster: Geneforge 2-5, and Avernum 4-6?