GMCG: The long and winding road
June 1, 2009
It has been over a month now since the Game Maker Community Game has begun, and for those who are entering concept fresh it may seem like there is very little to show for the Herculean effort that has taken place. However, the deceiving lack of anything concrete belies the sheer amount of developmental work that has gone on since the project’s inception.
The GMCG began quite surreally, with little fanfare save for an outcry of pessimism, with a large amount of discussion directed towards why the project would fail. Indeed, the cynical outcries became almost prophetic, when not long after commencement the GMCG was suffering from leadership issues and poor decisions with regards to plot selection. A furor ensued when “the official GMCG plot” was selected following an unplanned poll that lasted less than two days; an event which had drastic effects on the community’s faith in the leadership team. The clerical structure was shaken to its very core, and it seemed that the GMCG would be stopped before it started.
Thankfully, in an almost miraculous display of intervention, board admin Chronic turned back all the clocks, giving the GMCG a second chance. This time, there was a period of calm and progress, with numerous plots being submitted to be voted on. In the sheer quantity of plots submitted the GMCG has highlighted some of the creative potential the community has, and it would be nice to see some more of these GMCG plots carried forwards as splinter projects.
The peace, as it seems, was not to last forever. The number of stories was whittled down until there were two, Eve by Silentxxbunny and Corrupt Perfection by Pinpickle, and by this stage both of the plots had been so strongly developed by the community that they almost bore no resemblance to their original pitches. Despite a strong, tiered system of voting, several questionable timing decisions led to a veritable explosion of outrage in the community. Should the race have been more distinctly separated perhaps these issues wouldn’t have been so vehemently objected to. However, with a leadership team which was becoming increasingly adept in dealing with such matters, the voting closed several days (and several rounds of voting) after it was supposed to, with jubilations and congratulations all round and Eve as the master plot for the GMCG.
Now, the project seems to have entered a limbo phase, with events calmed enough to give time for contemplation of the journey thus far. The sheer amount of community involvement in such a short space of time has been staggering; one only has to look at the amount of prose written in the Eve thread to see the passion of some contributors. The plots which weren’t chosen are the perfect foundations for future projects; most of them have seen more feedback than most projects will ever get in this early stage of development. As for the leadership team which was the source of so much doubt, they are constantly expanding and maturing, and although they have yet to be truly tested they seem much more capable of tackling the tasks at hand than they were at the projects beginnings. The GMCG has survived it’s trials by fire, and it silences most of it’s detractors by the mere fact that it is still there. Hopefully the project is a success, paving the way for future community collaborations in the GMC.