Is it dead? - Printable Version

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Is it dead? - TobiWahn_Kenobi - 01-25-2019 01:18 AM

Hi Rocco, is StarBase Orion dead? No more progress? No SO2?
You said you would make a devblog a few years ago. Will there ever be a v2?

Thanks and all the best

RE: Is it dead? - rocco - 01-25-2019 05:56 AM

Starbase Orion is in the same position as it was when SO2 work started; in short, I've committed to keeping SO1 it up and running. Which means I still pay the server fees so multiplayer can continue, and if Apple introduces a breaking bug in a future iOS update I will evaluate it and (most likely) fix it. I can't predict the future, but its entirely possible Apple will do something rash like dropping support for Objective-C, which would kill Starbase Orion 1 immediately.

Starbase Orion 2 is not dead.. yet. As I've said before, my personal app development (which, right now, encompasses Naval Tactics, Starbase Orion, and the PTC Map app) never made enough money for me to quit my day job. Making SO2 is a huge task, and when you can only work on it between 10pm - 2am (between day job and my kids) it requires even more discipline, dedication, and pure drive than I ever thought possible (even after making SO1!).

So, being candid, what has been happening and, more importantly, what is the path forward?

I am a 40 yr old computer scientist, and my day job is the CTO of an app development agency in NYC. In the past two years machine learning has exploded onto the scene, especially for me in the aspect of running neural networks on mobile devices like iPhone. Much of my "free time" in the past two years has been spent learning and doing machine learning side projects; this not only benefits my day job (giving us practical experience in an emerging field of importance) but also helps my own future career path (expertise in machine learning is at a premium). So I've been doing weird but extremely cool shit like teaching an iPhone to play a real pinball machine, prototyping a robot that can sort industrial pallets, and a model which can read analogue time. None of these experiments (and the dozen other ones I've done) has been released in a production environment, and that's what I've been working on the last two months. It will take the shape as a free iOS app called the "Pointsman", which I've been training to score completed games of Ticket to Ride (the board game).

That's all well and good, machine learning has basically sucked up two years of my free time, but how does that help SO2? Well, assuming things ease up a little and I can get back into SO2 dev fully, I did plan on making use of all these newly developed skills for SO2. That's basically where SO2 development halted, i didn't just want to port the current AI to SO2 and call it a day. I wanted to push the envelope a little and make it something I could be proud of. Little did I know the rabbit hole I went down.

Anywho that probably sums it up. SO2 development will get a kick in the pants this summer as my nephew wants to do a game dev internship with me. The plan will be to implement the completely reworked espionage system to SO2.

RE: Is it dead? - TobiWahn_Kenobi - 01-25-2019 10:50 AM

(01-25-2019 05:56 AM)rocco Wrote:  Starbase Orion is in the same position as it was when SO2 work started; in short, I've committed to keeping SO1 it up and running....

Thanks for the great summary. I wish you well in your day job as well as your side projects and will be (im)patiently waiting for SO2 Big Grin

RE: Is it dead? - Cancuino - 02-13-2019 01:19 AM

Hi Rocco. Are you updating SO to fit iPhone X screens?

RE: Is it dead? - rocco - 02-14-2019 12:58 AM

Not unless Apple threatens to take it down from the store because of it. At which time I would be forced to evaluate how long it would take to "fix" it (spoiler alert, it will take a long time to fully rework SO1 to a responsive designe, which is why it just got stretched when the iphone5 came out). If its infeasible to quickly update SO1 to comply, then I would have to weigh that against just kicking SO2 (which already has a responsive design) out the door earlier (say, not implementing cool features i want to do just to get it live).