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Whither Ratchet 4!?06:46 PM -- Mon February 28, 2005

So, Ratchet is done. My greatest accomplishment ever! I completed it 100%, all secrets, trophies, bolts, skill points, even the museum, without once looking at a FAQ. Can't remember the last time I did something like that. Feels good, in a "complete waste of time" sort of way.

So guess I'm out of slacking activities. Well, there is sort of one - I'm almost done with a new Supreme patch! It adds a surprising new feature: World Merge. This allows you to take any world and append it onto an existing world. There's a long long list of issues of just what it can handle and such, because of course some things just don't fit together (for instance, it does absolutely nothing about crossing G variables - if both worlds use G0, they'll get mixed up). The real purpose of it is to allow a new type of contest. Instead of making a world, people will just have to make a single level that's really great (lots of limitations, like no global variables, only 40 tiles or whatever, X custom sounds, X custom items, and so on, so that we don't overflow the limits). Then I combine all of them into one world, and people can play them and vote on their favorite, without knowing who made which. We'll see who does the best! Anyway, you can also use this to import old stuff into a new world, but be warned you'll get a lot more than you bargain for, and will have to delete all the extraneous tiles, custom items, and custom sounds you don't really want to use, and test thoroughly to make sure you didn't cross things up in the process.

Hey, maybe we can even offer a Balderdash-style contest - one 'famous' world-builder and a bunch of others (famous or not - anybody who wants to enter) all make levels on a certain theme, and people have to guess which one was made by the specific builder. So all the other people would try to copy the style of that builder in making their level to fool people.

In addition to that, I'm looking at an alternative to CD issues - Discmakers offer an on-demand printing service that's cheap (and with all the pre-existing goodies and color, except the manual, which frankly was never very informative!), and I think Plimus offers warehousing and drop-shipping. Combining those two things makes me pretty much where we are now, only without all the work! And the prices should be not far from where they are, depends on what Plimus charges. Let's hope that works out.
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