I guess this topic probably has as much as any other about it, but the short explanation is that in about three months (October-26), Rock Band 3 is going to be released. It will have a small 25-key MIDI keyboard peripheral.
I'm kind of making a wager here, but my guess is that a lot of the people that buy Rock Band 3 are going to enjoy playing the piano parts. (Who wouldn't? ) There is a good chance they'll be interested in playing more -- whether they keep using the same keyboard or upgrade to a full-size one.
Hopefully they'll find their way to Synthesia and I want to be ready for that surge of new players.
So, I started working much faster than I ever had on Synthesia. By making a handful of sacrifices in my personal life, I've been able to ramp up the amount of time I have to work on it. (I basically come home from work each day to work on Synthesia all night now.)
I'm not dramatically changing the direction of the project or anything, but these new players are going to be a little less forgiving than all of you in the forums. There are some major things that are still missing if I'm interested in "hooking" them. Unfortunately, not many of the missing things are Learning Pack features, so if you're interested in improvements to those (mostly sheet music) features, you might have to wait a little longer.
That's a trade-off that I feel pretty guilty about. But, I'm pretty sure most of the required stuff are items you'll enjoy too, so maybe it won't be so bad. The good news is, once this development push through December is over, I'll have basically nothing else to do except all those sheet music features.
With all that said, here are the goals for the remainder of 2010. Some of these are things that aren't on the voting list and some I've never even mentioned before. Of course, all of these are subject to change...
Absolutely must make it in before 2010 is over!
- A simplified way to choose track settings in the one or two piano track case.
- 0.8.0: Online scoreboard.
- Some specific visualization improvements and a couple new special effects.
- 0.7.4: Video mode, resolution, and windowing options. These are standard with EVERY game except Synthesia at the moment.
(This is actually a longer list, I only included the highlights...)
- 0.7.3: Metronome
- 0.7.4: Lighted keyboard support in Practice Mode
- Performance Analysis
- 0.7.5: Track settings screen revamp
- Manual Track Split
- Song Library Feeds
- Live Video Feed (experimental)
- Track Volume Control
- UI "focus", user-assignable input, and keyboard-only navigation. (demoted from critical list)
Also, at some point I'm thinking of doing a full UI re-skin to match the new website. (Seriously, white backgrounds!) The gray is starting to feel pretty drab. Not sure I'll get a chance to do that before 2011 though.