So it took a little while longer than expected. The Open Feint libraries were rather cryptically and inaccurately documented in places which meant that code which appeared to work did not in fact work at all. Particular mention must go to Matt Jaques who helped me solve that particularly elusive bastardo bug.
Various other fixes are included, including one an annoying sound bug which meant that drinking too much coffee eventually made you go deaf. Perhaps the gods are trying to tell me something. Perhaps I should drown them out with a nice fresh mocha.
Overall, thanks to the patience of both folks at Aurora and my beta test team, all the problems were eventually fixed, so the new Flaboo! is bigger, tougher, more competitive, and better than ever. Long may this trend continue.
I now have 3 big things on my 'to do' list.
1) Investigate Android as a platform
This fills me with some fear, as it's another API to learn, and then - potentially - a whole bunch of hardware specific issues to fix. Re-writing Flaboo! so that it uses 'virtual coordinates' and thus takes account of any screen size is no trivial task. Additionally, I don't know if accelerometer tilt is standardised between hardware types... etc... etc... I hate this stuff.
2) Flaboo! will soon be part of an Open Feint promotion. Woohoo!
3) Flaboo! LITE version will be out at some point in the near future. It'll effectively be Flaboo! with no Open Feint or leaderboards. The people who have bought Flaboo! already have bought free updates for life, so I hope they'll still feel satisfied.
And in Other News
On the non-Flaboo! front, I have two other games on the drawing board at the moment.
The Clockworks is something I've been thinking of for some time. It's kind of paying a debt to all the magical books I read as a child. The pre-pro screens are looking beautiful, and will be using 3D in a really unique way. The aim is to get across the sense of a massive, evocative, magical landscape on a very small screen, and create a gentle, if elegiac experience. That's all I'm saying about it for now.
incoboto is a complete departure from my usual work; a strange crossbreed between an art-house animation and tactile fun. I'm sure a lot of people will immediately say: "WTF? That's a game?" when they first see it. When they realise how relevant it is to them, personally, that'll hopefully change to 'Cool! Let's see where this goes!'
There's a lot of Fable in it, but not in the ways people might expect. It's also a great candidate for a GDC or IGF talk. If you want a hint, I was listening to a lot of 'Mesh' when the idea came to me. Music's a huge part of visualising a game for me - the right song can define a game from the outset, which is really helpful as the months go on.
As ever, it's still just me doing this stuff, so obviously one idea will take precedence, and existing customers of Flaboo! take precedence over everything.
Regardless, I'll post some screenshots when things are a little further along, and see how people react. It should be interesting.