State of the project + Mod Tool release


Hi,

For tension-building reasons, I'll quickly showcase the brand-new Mod Tool before discussing Hardware Tycoon.

Mod Tool

Showcasing Matehhh's Package Expansion Mod

The app was remade from the ground up, moving away from Construct 2. It's now less bloated while providing a significantly better user experience (no more clunky sliders!). Moreover, it makes modding easier by adding these features:

  • R&D Preview to conveniently visualize your mod in the game,
  • Sorting by package stats,
  • Searching through your packages,
  • More helpful tooltips,
  • Generally streamlining the experience and squashing some bugs

You can download it on the project's itch.io page.
The app works best on Windows and I don't have the resources to test it on macOS - any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

The reason this tool exists is to test the waters with a new environment which I plan on using for future games. It was a neat and hopefully useful side project.


What happened to Hardware Tycoon?

I am aware that it's been two years since the last update and I said I would go until at least version 0.3.
What went wrong then?

There's the usual not having as much time as before, connected to running out of youthful motivation for this little passion project of mine. That's amplified by using a somewhat out-of-date tool that's been retired a couple of years ago. I simply don't enjoy feeling as if I'm wasting my time struggling to work around a very simple problem that's a non-issue in "real" work environments, which, if learned could actually land me a job. Seriously, the time I spent on making simple scrollbars work...
Staying on the topic, the project is nearly 8 years old at this point. I've never expected its scope to grow this much, Hardware Tycoon was always intended to be a free and simple web game, yet the features just kept creeping. And so, after all that the project is somewhat messy, having had to reimagine or stick new features on top a dozen times. Most projects can turn into infinite time sinks (a huge issue with indie games in general) and looking back to the early versions we've really come far - much farther than ever planned.

So why not get help for the project?
I've had a fair amount of people asking to join the project for a long time now, but I never decided to take them up. The reasons have mostly stayed the same, partly coming from Construct 2 not working great with version control systems (not saying it can't be done! still much less efficient than traditional code) plus the project being nearly 8 years old and not pleasant to work with.
There's also the fact that I'm not the best team player, especially with internet strangers where language barriers are common. Throwing more people at a project can often just slow it down and we aren't talking about hired professionals but volunteers from all over. Obviously, the community has helped me tons over the years. As much as listening to people point out all the different issues with the game sucks, you can't make anything awesome with just one fixed point of view. So to all helpful members of the community - big thank you! 

TL;DR

  • Less time and will
  • Dissatisfaction with the game-making tool
  • Want to move on to things with better job prospects and start from scratch
  • Infinitely growing scope - more features than I've ever wanted

Yes, that means I'm not adding any more features.
I'll still provide basic support on our Discord server, web page, and e-mail.


Thank you all for being a part of this great journey and see you next time! This isn't the end

Get Hardware Tycoon

Comments

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Thank you for providing such a great game. However, I come from the East, China. Could you provide the local language?

Hi,
Unfortunately, the game does not support localization.

hi, genuine question, isn't the internet kind of banned in China? As in you're not able to access a lot of its features. So I thought itch.io would be especially banned. Why isn't it, or are you simply using a workaround method to be able to access the world wide web?

Thanks a lot for developing the game to the point it is today.
I've had a lot of fun with it, and still play it occasionally.

Sometimes amazing games do reach an end due loss of motivation, lack of time (shift of priorities) or being too complex of a mess to be maintainable. It's natural for these things to happen.
Often similar games have their last version played by more people than all of the previous ones combined.
While perceived as dead projects by the creator and the active community, they will Always keep on entertaining and inspiring new people who have yet to find them.

Thanks for making this possible.

(+1)

I absolutely loved this game and found myself getting every milestone on every difficulty and sinking in around 5-10 hours. I just got so carried away. As you said, you probably won't be adding any more features, but thank you so much for the ones you have given us. If you're ok with it, I might even take the code from the game and make a second one I loved it so much.  Honestly, I don't care how messy the code is because mine is probably worse, but I would love to work on this game if you won't. This is probably the best game I've ever seen on itch.io. 

(+4)

He came back to life just to say that he is not going to touch game again 🗿

(+4)

I had a great time, thank you.

On another note, could you open-source the project? It would be helpful to those that wish to continue the project themselves, or those (like me) that want to make a shoddy remake on a more up-to-date engine.

(+3)

Getting a project ready for an open-source release is a herculean effort. I don't wish on my greatest enemy to have to decipher an 8-year-old spaghetti.
I'd much rather start on a new, much-improved game.
If Senzo (the artist) doesn't mind I can release the assets.

(+2)

Hello. I really don't care about the 8 year old spaghetti, I can organize it. With your permission, I would love to continue working on this game. This might have been one of the best games i've seen on itch and I would love to continue its legacy.

(+1)

Right there with you, Crosshairs.

(+1)

At least send the source code so someone can finish 0.3

I could be misreading things but it sounds like they're planning on recreating it from the ground up with a more modern setup that can double as a skillset for a career as well.

(1 edit) (+1)

No... what i mean is that someone who is actually going to develop is responsible of the newer things. It just doesn't feel like  hardware tycoon having that many things on the mod

(+1)

I'm not sure that source code is going to be mega useful, with it being built on construct 2, at least from what I know about construct 2 (idk if it changed), it's not going to have generated particularly readable or maintainable code, and probably why open-sourcing it would be a herculean effort. The alternative would be releasing project files, but then there's the issue of the game still being built on a dead program.

If the project were to go on with a larger scope, it would probably be worth just rebuilding from the ground up on a different engine / language using the assets. It's obviously not unheard of; everything made on construct is JavaScript, and game dev tycoon (probably an inspiration for this game) was written in JavaScript, but it's in general a bit of a niche choice for games.

(+1)

we could use visual studio 2022 (i use that personally) or unity to recreate the game and add cool things that haxor refused to add (copy save file)

Very exciting to heard news coming from you. What you've done with this game this far is good enough.

(+2)

It was a pleasure to be part of the community since the beggining and see to have seen its development. Thank you!

(+2)

I don’t think you should work on 0.3 and instead work on remaking the game, or put faith in the community idk

(+4)

Feature creep is the vain of abandoned projects.