Status Update with the Ferocity of a Thousand Status Updates (recursively)

Well, not quite that exciting.

But thing are moving along pretty well, albeit a little delayed (I think I’m 2 weeks off schedule currently, but who’s counting?)

One interesting little bit of fun is localization.  The Dishwasher is coming out in English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Chinese.  Since I drew my own font, I had to add all sorts of special characters to the graphic.  For Japanese and Chinese I had to change the way the game handled fonts so that it could draw some using my font and others using a SpriteFont (the alternative would be hand drawing a couple thousand Asian glyphs).  It took a couple of days to get everything working right with all of that, but the big hassle comes with adding changes.

A lot of bugs that roll in look a bit like “The game quits a multiplayer game with the message ‘you have signed out’ but should show the message ‘you have been disconnected from LIVE,'” or something to that effect.  So, for bugs where the message that shouln’t be displayed hasn’t been added to the game’s text resources, that means I have to:

  • Add the line of text to the text resources
  • Send the latest text resources file to the various localization people
  • Get the localized resource back from the loc people (usually there are 3 handbacks per update)
  • Put the updated text resources back in the game

Not too bad, not too unexpected, but when you’ve got bugs showing up every other day to this effect, it starts to feel a bit crazy with all the back and forth.  Gone are the days when I can just add a bit of text here and there with no repercussions!  It’s weird–these are the things you just don’t think about before you get into it.

I added a practice room.  It’s not too exciting; it’s just a way for you to see what the game thinks of what buttons you’re pressing.  I got the idea from Marvel Vs. Capcom.  (This means that the text “Practice Mode” must be put in the text resources, sent off, localized in 7 different languages, sent back, and incorporated–see what I mean?)

I also added support for the Hori Arcade Fighting Stick.  I’m not sure how in love I am with this thing (had to order one), but mashing buttons is fun.  I guess I’m so used to the original Dishwasher control scheme that having to switch over to something that feels so differently is a bit frustrating–in fact, it felt a lot like trying to dominate in Marvel vs Capcom in arcades after mastering it on PSOne!

Anyway, it feels like I’m getting toward the home stretch.  I don’t mean to sound jaded or anything–I’m still having a blast working on all this, even when there’s drudgery involved (I’ve been a student and an office worker, and XBLA-related drudgery simply can’t compare to other types of drudgery out there!)

Also, expect a deluge of themes and gamerpics!  I’ve got 2 themes running on my dev kits and they look pretty slick.  I’m hoping to do one for free and one for …not free.  The free one is good, the not free one is [IMHO] better.  I’m not still entirely convinced people buy themes, but if they do, I think they’ll be impressed.  The gamerpics are cool too.

Ok, back to work for me!