The application and story was developed by
three friends living in Melbourne, Australia.
It's a long tale, for us at least.
In December 2009 an idea is born that it would be good to make an application for the iPhone that is a book, a choose-your-own-adventure type, for adults not kids, that involved social interactions, no dragons and Fantasy elements, that you could choose your gender etc. It has a working title of "It's a Boy / Girl Thing" and has two major narrative streams of the player being a boy or a girl, you can describe yourself. Some ideas are jotted down about the possible iphone reader app and an Author application is imagined as well.
The coder then gets an old emac discarded by the local university and hacks it to run without the CRT and the software to allow coding for an iPhone. It is then thought that it would be best to meet up with some real writers. It is also imagined that this will make a nice little summer project that will have an iphone app released quickly. Something suitable to do over the two months of January and February 2010, until the uni semester commences...
January 2010 and the first meeting takes place at the Lounge on a hot summer's day between the coder and a writer who then takes a simple idea and runs amok with it coming up with lots of great plans that are actually achievable. The coder get a quick lesson in how a writer could write such a book with talk of "scenarios", "small stakes", "false resolution" etc. Another writer is brought into this plan and the writing commences.
By March the first writing stage is nearly completed and the first thing everybody notices is that this is far more complex than first imagined. The Author application evolves to allow a better ability to write and control the multi-threaded story and an iphone simulator is coded to allow testing.
In July, the winter break from uni, actual coding commences in the iOS language and it's about this time that Apple updates the requirements for App Store submission and the PowerPC emac has now become redundant.
August sees story editing and development on the Author application continue. It also heralds the arrival of an iPod Touch which is used for testing touch interfaces as well as display configurations. And playing games.
September is announced with much rejoicing that the app is near completion because a functioning prototype has been coded on a new Mac Mini purchased via eBay and installed on the iPod Touch. By the end of the month we imagine that we can have a launch party in the first half of December, just in time for the holiday season.
November is a flurry of activity with final edits and read-throughs as well as app designs being tested on a Release Candidate. A cut-off date for submission to the App Store hovers into view and passes, sigh. We postpone until after the holiday break thinking that mid January is achievable.
January and February 2011 come and go and so it is that a year has passed since this project began and we can now say that we completely appreciate the complexity of this endeavour. Another uni year commences and development slows down to allow for this, some more months pass with story edits and code fixes.
June is when it all comes alive again, the uni breaks for semester, the winter months force us indoors and everybody agrees that enough already, let's get this bloody thing submitted. We have until mid-July...
Well....it seemed acheiveable at the time but it turned out that it wasn't to be so. However, this month of October has everyone back in action to ready the app for launch this summer. Really and for trues.
It's November and the story edits are finished, the binary is compiled for debug and now its all ready for uploading to iTunes Connect.....
At the end of November we have the app marked as ready for sale by Apple, launch to take place 5th December, 2011.
By 2012 the app had about 5 sales and then we pulled it from the store because the marketing and promotion never happened. But it's not over yet. The developer is making some Android apps and has plans to re-open the account with iTunes, so there's a second coming. Of sorts.
With uni finally finished time is spent on porting the iOS app across to android (min SDK 10). The port is completed in time for Christmas 2014 and is up on the google play store for free as well as being offered here.