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Demo's up!10:35 PM -- Tue October 26, 2004

Hey, the Kid Mystic demo is now available, enjoy the first chapter of the game! I've also been playing some of the HH worlds, and they're really good. There are SIXTEEN this year! That's not just a record, it's a blowout. WTG sent me all the worlds, so I just need to pack them up for the webpage. Normally I play worlds all the way through before putting them up, so I can doublecheck they're okay (and be the first to get the high scores...), but this is an awful lot of worlds. I've played a few, and I'll probably have to put them up without playing all.

So with all that junk out of the way, what's left on the Hamumu agenda? First thing is to ship out HH prizes. Lots of people are getting those! You know if you are, since WTG collected the addresses. I'll get that done tomorrow (which may also be when I put up the worlds). Then it's a more relaxing time. I like to take it a little easy after the mad rush that comes at the end of making a game. But in the near future, there's a Supreme patch coming with some new triggers and effects that should further expand your arsenal of wacky level-making, and I'll be getting to work on a new game, very slowly at first, since I'm taking things easy. A new game??

Yeah, a new one. See, here's the thing... every Halloween, I like to make a surprise for you guys, like Pumpkin Pop one year, and um, that's about it. I always try to. Loonyland was supposed to be a Halloween surprise, but it got too big. This year, I got cut off by the trip we had to take to Minnesota, and the intense work of finishing Kid Mystic. I came up with an idea I liked, but it just would've taken too much time. But then I also came up with another crazy idea, and after talking with Sol Hunt herself, she feels that this can take precedence. She demands that someday there must be a Sol Hunt game, but as long as I never say I won't do one, she's fine with it being put off. And she really likes this new idea.

This new game is tentatively titled "Bad Graphics", and is a super original idea. That's one reason I'm so excited about it - this is something people will notice just because it's so unique (and next year, I can enter it in the IGF and maybe get past the preliminaries!). It is also an online game, so I'm very excited about that. You guys will be playing against and with each other and me in this grand adventure (it's an RPG of sorts). It's not coming soon, it's not even really started yet, but it's what I will be putting my effort into once I begin putting effort into things again.

No, Grimbelina will probably never come out.
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Let the Mystical floodgates swing wide!11:56 PM -- Thu October 21, 2004

Okay people, I expect no less than 87,000 Kid Mystic orders in the next two days! Get to it! Please?

ANyway, as you can see, Kid Mystic is available now. There's no demo yet, I'll be working on that when I'm done with this, and maybe after I've had a little break! And have printed up some CDs, since I haven't printed any yet, and with luck, there will be a ton of orders to fill momentarily! But most of you diehard Hamheads know if you need Kid Mystic - if you own the old version of it (and like it, of course), you definitely need the new one. If you like Loonyland, you need it. If neither of those apply, maybe you need to wait for the demo! It should only be a few days.

I'm also back from my attempted trip. As far as running the business goes, it was something of a low-key fiasco. It turns out that a 56k modem does not have the necessary bandwidth to deal with 2500 spams a day. After a couple days, I developed a technique that worked - I logged directly into the server and used a webmail program to go through and manually delete all the spams, 100 at a time. It actually didn't take all that long to do, it was just a pain (and I had ample time to play solitaire while I did it, since each page of 100 emails took about 2 minutes to load). I ended up shipping several orders. No complaints about those yet, but we'll see what happens! I don't know any reason they wouldn't get to their destinations just as well as the orders I ship from here. So I don't know. It wasn't a raving success, but I was able to answer a few customer emails and ship a few orders. It was also frustrating that I only had a short time to do emails in the morning or the evening, so I couldn't reply to anything in a timely fashion like I usually do.

In the meantime, Halloween is fast approaching, and Halloween Horror 5 is on the chopping block, getting tested and ready to go. WTG mentioned 15 entries or so! That's crazy. Sounds like the biggest Halloween Horror yet! Well, I better go start printing out Kid Mystics for the evening rush. There will be an evening rush, right?? Start ordering!
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Trippin'10:47 PM -- Fri October 15, 2004

So first of all, a public service announcement: if you're planning to get a "NO SOLICITING" sign, even a bright red one, for the front of your house, don't bother. You'll probably have better luck with the shotgun + rocking chair combo. We got a No Soliciting sign recently and have had 2 solicitors since. It's not a large number, but it's no reduction from our usual. One a week minimum. Sigh. The funny thing is, we know they see the sign, because every single legitimate visitor we have always comments on it! It's pretty hard to miss.

Second of all, Kid Mystic will be released next Thursday, or possibly Friday if there's too much trouble on Thursday. This is because...

Third of all, we will be taking yet another trip (not really a vacation, this is personal business), from Saturday until Wednesday. The difference is, we got a new laptop much better than the old one, some prepaid internet time, and I will bring along a bunch of CDs and halloween goodies and stamps and mailers, and I will be trying to keep the business up to speed while I'm gone! I think I can pull it off, though it will be awkward and painful. Hopefully you will all order way too many games and I won't be able to keep up (that's actually my general dream, not just for this trip). If I'm a little slow on the response time this weekend, that's why. But it will be an interesting experiment! And our new laptop does wi-fi stuff, so I can't wait to pull up to a Starbuck's or the airport and see if it works. That could be fun. Much better than the regular phone modem it also has. This is gonna be a wacky trip.

And lastly, Jon Stewart was on Crossfire today. He is my hero. If you didn't see it, you missed the greatest television moment of the decade. He absolutely tore apart the media establishment and chewed on its innards, all by being calm, clear, and polite. Well, mostly polite. "Real" news people WISH they had a tenth of his integrity. They also wish he'd just shut up and do comedy, leaving the real news for them to distort, which they actually told him to do. His response? "I'm not gonna be your monkey."
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Home stretch09:55 PM -- Thu October 7, 2004

Looks like this Kid Mystic thing is one of my patented tiny projects that blew up big. But it's almost over now. Right now I'm just putting the finishing touches on the final bonus feature, then as long as there are no more bugs to fix, it's done. I won't be done with this feature until tomorrow at least, and then there's some testing to make sure it's all right, and then making the packaging and printing them up! I can't wait to be done!

Also, there are two new Supreme add-ons and a Derelict update available since yesterday. I haven't done an announcement on them yet, because I have to put up a pair of Stockboy level sets I have too, and I figure it's better to combine these things. So grab what you like! The Derelict update adds some great new stuff to the game - besides adding a new powerup and an extra hard difficulty, it adds Exploration Mode. That takes away the time limits, but makes the enemies twice as tough. It's really a lot more fun to me, and quite a bit different, playing it that way. Some levels are much harder. The author of Derelict promises more updates fairly often, including new levels, monsters, and maybe even playable characters (okay, he kind of has to rely on me for those last two), so check it out. You should get it this month while it's 10% off. Hey, order it along with Kid Mystic and get another 20% off the total! And order all of our other games too! Why not?
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