Counter-Invader: Post Mortem

In the year 2009, a lot of things were happening that lead me to the decision to start taking my hobby and turning it into a career. Partially I had been going to college in a year to study electrotechnical engineering under the muse that it would finance my future in the game business. However, I started to realise that working as an engineer was not the right path for me as it would distract me from my real goals and my desire to make games kept growing. One fateful morning, despite the depression I was suffering at the time, I had a sudden surge of inspiration as I woke up. I had a dream.

This may sound a bit strange, but one of my greatest inspirational sources come from when I'm slumbering in bed. Often I would have some vague adventure dream without any consistency, but this one time it was clear, like I was consciously drafting the game in my sleep. I wanted to make a game based of Space Invader but had story elements and was a shooter adventure. I immediatelly went for my computer and sat down and made the prototype for the game while the idea was still fresh in my head. I used parts of an experimental engine I was working on using extensions for Game Maker as a base and the time just flew.

Early prototype for a possible Resident Evil fan game.

One of the things that was most interesting with Counter-Invader was that it was my first attempt at a serious game with a proper story in 7 years. Last time was when I made Moon Light, a mafia adventure game where you were private investigating the murder of your brother who was in the mafia. Oddly enough, I never got far enough of on Counter-Invader to implement the dialogue and scenes, instead I focused on just getting the basic gameplay to work. However, the documents detailing the story were thorough and it's a shame that I was unable to demonstrate what was in store as I'll explain.

Eliza Green, a major character, was just about to to be introduced in the next update when the game source suddenly broke.

Everything was going great, the game had even gained a small following of eager fans, excited about the progress. I was about to introduce an expansion on the multiplayer mode with theoretically up to 64 player support. The story was about to be implemented with dialogue and Eliza Green, an insecure yet deadly special agent on a recon mission was about to be introduced. Suddenly, the game source went corrupted and the project came to a sudden sad halt.

During a routine test the game source went corrupted and the game would never again run after compilation.

Counter-Invader remains my biggest project of all time. I spent 9 months into the development. However, this is not the end as the project will one day raise from the dead and be restored to its former glory. But until then, I will be preparing myself with the neccessary skills to fully realise the game as I pictured it.

Posted on: 2010-07-20