February 22nd

Yeah, I thought I was done – but I kept poking around with the game, running statistical tests on the behavior of the mathematics, and started discovering lots of problems underneath the hood. The worst (of many) was the horrifying discovery that my vaunted spring-relaxation algorithm wasn’t properly saving its results, so for all intents and purposes, it did nothing. I found lots of other lesser screwups in the mathematical system, and have been steadily cleaning them out, but this is all intensely embarrassing. I was supposed to have finished this thing three weeks ago! On top of it, I’m truly sick of the project and desperately want to put it behind me, but I certainly can’t let it go out the door this way. 

These problems are not minor issues of fine tuning: some of the errors completely screwed up the operation of the system, resulting in behavior that made no sense. I’ve been on a drive to improve the simplicity of the system, to make it easier to understand. For that reason, I decided to throw away my beautiful spring-relaxation algorithm and instead focus the game around the simple question of flattery versus honesty. This reduces it to little more than Lunar Lander, but with three unknown personality variables: honesty, gullibility, and vanity. Those three dominate the behavior of the characters, and the differences really show up.

I’m taking a break from working on it right now because I am just too far gone to do any more work tonight. Tomorrow morning I’ll be back at it. I have GOT to wrap this thing in two days!!!!