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  The Daibaka Model 08:53 PM -- Mon February 22, 2010  

Still hacking away at the level editor in Daibaka (maybe someday I'll be able to make a level! That would be a treat). So lemme tell you the key to how the whole game works, because it's pretty unique.

Daibaka is unabashedly an embodiment of me begging for money. It's basically telling you "If you like classic Hamumu games with their 3D-rendered guys, then give me a pile of money so I can keep making them!" It is a game that asks for donations. Now how does it do that? Well, I came up with three reasons why somebody would give me money, and I wanted to hit all 3 of those cases with the game:

1. Extraneous: You're just being nice (or you really want me to be able to make these games for you)

2. Selfish: You want to get something for yourself (you wish to exchange money for goods, rather traditional of you)

3. Altruistic: You want to help out other people (me included)

So, for reason #1, I don't have to do anything. You can just go ahead and hand me money right now. I'm waiting. Go ahead. Dum di dum...

For reason #2, I have a very simple concept: if you donate $10 or more, you get access to the level editor in the game, and the ability to play levels by other people. In this way, it's exactly like Costume Party (but this has no expansions). So you are paying for a game, simple as that.

Reason #3 is the interesting one. The game will only have 1 built-in level available at launch (the built-in levels are free to play for anyone). The remaining 349 levels will have a tag over them - the second level is "$10!", then "$20!", and so on, up to "$3490!" (I should probably add an extra level, since I actually need $3500, but I have them neatly arranged in sets of 5!). Everytime the total sum of donations reaches that amount, that level unlocks! So you are in essence buying the game for everybody. If you donate $5, and your friend donates $5, both of you (and everyone else on Earth) can now play one more level. If you find 20 strangers that all are willing to hand over a mere dollar, you all get 2 more levels!

Also, every set of 5 levels, in various ways you will discover, gives you an opportunity to obtain one each of the weapons, devices, and superbombs. So there's that to look forward to in the levels being added. The levels are a set of 4 regular levels in which your goal is to collect Evidence, and then the lair of the Villain you just collected Evidence to find. You don't have to play levels in order, but you do have to beat all 4 of a Villain's sub-levels before you can take him on.

Of course, the levels can't actually unlock until I make them (and their associated villains, weapons, etc), so I will try to keep up (fingers are crossed that keeping up will be very difficult!). It would be unfair for people to pay up and then not be able to get anything for it in a reasonable time.

And then there's one more thing that makes it all the more exciting... I haven't worked out exact amounts here, so you can't hold me to this, but I am picturing that if you donate $30 or more, you get to invent a weapon, device, superbomb, or one of the villains themselves. How you invent that is up to you - if you want to provide the artwork, I'll stick it in (within reason), and of course you get to come up with how it works and what it's called and all that stuff (again, within reason! And limited by how capable I am at implementing your idea - we can discuss the possibilities beforehand). You could also donate more to be able to invent more, maybe every $10 beyond that lets you add one more design to the pile, but I will probably limit you to one of each thing - I don't want one person to design the whole game. Unless that person is me, of course.

And before somebody says this, because somebody will, this isn't me rubbing my hands together and cackling that I've got people paying me to make my game/whitewash my fence. I'm the one who has to do the work. Implementing the code and drawing all the needed frames and elements is hard work. Coming up with ideas is absolutely fun, and I would not have any problem throwing down 70 ideas for each thing myself. I look forward to it, and I'm always bubbling over with ideas (bubble gun! BAM, there I go!). If you think coming up with the ideas isn't fun, well, you can still donate $30+, you aren't required to invent anything when you do!

I thought ideas like giving a t-shirt with a certain donation level would be cool, but then I realized that defeated the purpose of the entire exercise. If I have to spend $10 sending you a T-shirt, now I need $10 more to buy 3DS Max! So while I want to come up with more interesting donation awards, I have to come up with ones that don't cost me money. Or I have to subtract what they cost from their effective value, and that's just tacky. I wonder if I could offer some kind of Behind The Dumb appearance or something...
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