The hellish army continues towards is hellish goal, hellishly hell-bent on getting there despite the hellish effort required . . .

No, I have not turned Satanic; it’s merely a weird way of saying I’ve made progress on the Maze in these three days. Lack of Internet access has kept me silent so far. To report: I’ve added three more mazes: Hypotenus, The Roman Square, Cretan01. The names probably won’t make it into the game. Cretan01 is definitely the darkest. I can’t help but wonder if it’ll be a tad too difficult for the new player, for it’ll be among those first to be served up in the Maze. Take that, n00b!

At any rate, it took me far more time to make tilesets for these new entries than it took to build the levels. Four hours I spent yesterday, tweaking parameters on the faithful Gimp, until at last I was satisfied. I salute thee, artists. But I digress.
I’ve also pushed in the first boss enemy; what else? Added an ambiance system, which plays creepy moans, howls, and all other forms of sound effects in the background as you progress through the game. I confess, some of those howls spook me out during testing. The system’s random, so you’ll never hear the same sequence twice. I shall continue to add more sound effects.

At last, I’ve also finalized the premise for the game: the Maze is a near-death experience, a sort of hellish testing ground between life and death, run a shadowy being called the Alchemist. [ 😀 ). Now comes the kicker: I’ve integrated the Voice of the Alchemist as the game’s narrator! From the intro to the gloomy, encouraging comments he makes between levels, it’s all in. I’ll be adding more voice clips, but thankfully a hefty selection already resides in the project folder. Like the ambiance system, this narration system uses random selection. There’s a bit more tweaking to be done; certain voice clips should be heard less often.


All in all, a decent bit of work for three days. Yet I confess I am not satisfied, for all this could have been done in a day had I already had the know-how. It occurs to me that only 30% of game-making time is spent on MAKING something: the other 70% lies in learning how to make it. Probably the ratio is even steeper. For instance, I spent an entire day working on the intro, drawing art, making voice clips, compiling, testing, editing and re-testing. My intro went from nothing to cinematic to minimalistic. Today the intro is complete, and it contains none of that art I spent so 4 hours building. At the cost of 6 hours time, only 2 of which were spent on the final version, I have my 4-minute introduction.
See what I mean? I feel like the Count of Monte Christo, waiting fifteen, twenty years for his revenge; we differ only in that he is fictitious and infinitely richer than I am.

If I were Aesop, I would give you a moral: Yesterday’s mistakes lead to today’s perfection. The End.
Since I am the ALCH3MIST, I give you the moral anyway and return to my work.