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Metacore - Part 2: The Next Step - Posted Sunday, 13th August 2006 by Liam

Part 2 of the Metacore History series. Includes a progression of the unfinished 'Mushroom Caves' by BLG!

Aquatilis Caverna was reaching a state where we could play it in game, without any of the toys, plants, or critters, which took longer to make than the background itself. I remember logging into the forums daily and checking for updates, and never being disappointed – there was always something new from BLG, whether it was twenty new concept sketches, a new model, or simply an idea.

Soon, it was decided by nornagon and Knux that they wanted to make a development team, and after some deliberation and name suggestions we settled on Metacore, and decided we would make more rooms after AC, among them the sadly lost Mushroom Caves.

Excited, everyone voted on which critters they wanted the most, and the top critters began to be modeled. Surprisingly quickly, BLG began to churn out critter models – as I remember, the Jellyfish was the first, and you can see the animation that she posted on the forums at the bottom of this article.

Once the images for the critters were being done, we began to hunt around for more coders – some of us knew AquaShee mutually, so he was asked to join and did so, beginning to code almost immediately. Within a week, we had working versions of the Jellyfish ingame, and were spending hours lost in the mystery of the Caverns already.

It was around this time that MK112 joined the crew. A coder and an artist, he made his own contributions to Metacore in the form of the Kyutai Whales, a joint venture between AquaShee and himself, the shellfish, various critters which were never completed (including a Seahorse and a new whale for Room 2), and helped code the critters BLG was modeling.

Nina, original creator of the Mermaid Caves, made an appearance soon after MK had joined, and became a concept artist for Metacore. She thought Aquatilis Caverna was going well, but hesitated to say it was related to the Mermaid Caves because they were so radically different that only the most base concept had stayed the same – that of an underwater room. Regardless, she happily made suggestions and comments on the room, though certain team members would have preferred otherwise. Some felt that Nina shouldn't be a part of the new Aquatilis Caverna, but Knux quickly decided to let Nina in, knowing she was a good artist and the team could benefit from her help.

It was 3 months into Metacore, I think, when I started to come up with ideas for going public – what we would do, how we would present ourselves (a company, or a development group?) and whether or not to make a big deal out of it. Being ‘Public Relations' for Metacore taught me a lot: how to handle negative people; how to write, and keep people interested; it forced me to mature a lot, one of the things I think which has helped me in real life a lot.

I began to suggest putting messages into signatures and the like to begin to get the community interested, which was a brilliant success; we soon had people seeding true and false information about what ‘MC' was, and what it would do into the community, and rumours were rife.

It was loads of fun, and we all enjoyed taunting the public slightly - here are a few of my favorite advertising banners and tauntlets. The first is by BLG, the second by Sent.

We were always on the lookout for promising people and projects, and quickly secured Sentinal and the Raccoon Norns into Metacore, as well as Don, LilWashu, Trix, and Helen who all agreed to join, though some were unsure as to how successful our ventures were going to be, and yet others preferred to sit back, watch, and wait.

It was a period of work and ideas, as new rooms began to be discussed, and the forums were expanded to include other ideas such as the Den, Elysia, Charan, and more.

I began writing up the release information, and Daan and nornagon worked on the website, and it was incredibly exciting for everyone. I soon found out, however, that I wasn't going to be there when MC was supposed to be announced… asking Knux to post what I had written, I was whisked off to Victoria on a holiday.

When I came back, there was loads of new stuff on our private forums – the public forums had become active, and it seemed the words ‘Metacore Creations' were all over the community.

One day, I was on the forums when BLG posted a horrifying message on the private forums – the model of the Mushroom Caves she had been doing had been corrupted, and she'd have to start again! Greatly disheartened, she redrew the room… which turned out to be a good thing. Her new design was bigger, better, and more interesting than her previous one, and she started to model it as she continued with the critters, as well as toys and plants.

Rebuilding, she began to post updates at an incredible speed, and we were once again wowed at her 3D ability. In fact, I was so awed that I began to look into doing 3D modeling myself, and a process began which would continue on in my ‘career' as a developer, and still continues today with the release of Terra Pluvialis.

It was then that things began to get interesting, and Metacore development *really* started.

Progression of the Mushroom Caves by Kim

History - Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5

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