I know I said this game was postponed for a while but eventually after the director and I talked about it and we decided it was finally time to pull the plug for good or dare I quote a term from our former PR manager “let the old beast die“. Alas, a proper post-mortem can’t go without it’s backstory right?
Army Men Extended was supposed to start off as a fun and enjoyable singleplayer mod I’d make for Freedom Force as a tribute to the Army Men series when 3DO filed for Chapter 11 in 2004. I really wanted to keep the spirit of Army Men alive even if its just through a short singleplayer adventure.
After I’ve suffered through hard drive failures four times in my life (and researched many games to find what will work best for AMX), and a failure with running a team for the first time, I was about ready to give up. Story writer then later came along offered a story plot that was not only great but it actually gave me a chance to start fresh again with a new slate and for a while, things were actually doing well for a change.
As soon as our PR manager came in that’s when things begun to go south. They did not see eye-to-eye and tensions risen, being the newbie I was to game dev, I struggled to keep the team together, then again, I’m never was cut out for leadership. Naturally, I’m a lone-wolf so people were just not something I could handle very well. I only took the leap of faith because I felt I had no choice if I wanted my project to get anywhere.
The second team I had finally collapsed and dev-wise, I was once again on my own, but of all who once worked with me, only the story director remained. In the end, it was him who was loyal with me and managed to hold on for 7 full years. He was never the best to work with and I already was aware of it day 1 since like myself, he too was a newcomer to game dev, only difference is at least I had a fair amount of mod dev experience to guide me, but even so, I was nearly as clueless in the indie scene as he was and that’s why I defended him more against the team’s wishes where they never even trusted him. I wish I had the backbone and just stomped my feet and reminded them of the project, maybe then AMX would have completed entirely by now and perhaps even The Mean Greens would not have been able to taken the lead.
Funny enough it was when I finally decided to go solo that Army Men III finally managed to get somewhere and it did last long enough for a Beta release on the series’ 15th Anniversary no less. For the first time, I truly felt like our game has gotten somewhere and it actually did to an extent. I managed to prove wrong most of the other indie devs who doubted me and tried to convince me to kill the project and work on my own IP instead. In the end, only my story writer trusted me the most where most did not even cared to understand the backstory behind my personal attachment to the project.
I am no where near innocent in all this. I was too weak, naive, and cautious to take proper action that could have saved the life of this project and surpass it’s goal. I missed my key chance to make a mark in the gaming industry through a fan-game.
In the end, I’ve ultimately failed. Within the last few years, along with other life factors, I witnessed my health begin to decline and ironically my own project contributed to it. This year, I finally realized it was already too late yet I still wanted to hold on to faith and postpone the game instead and work on a new project of my own IP and see how well that goes before giving Army Men Extended and more specifically, Army Men III another go.
Unfortunately now I know its no longer possible at this point. I often hated being right on certain things and this is one of them.
Army Men III is truly dead…
I have realized everything from Army Men Extended is not entirely a lost cause. I still intend to carry on the plan with Army Men Online as that will give me a fresh new slate and another chance to redeem myself. I’ve even created a new GDD for it which has a scope that might even blow TMG out of the ocean, but that time will not come at least until 2018-2019.
Meanwhile, my sole focus right now is our own IP.