“goodbye is only eybdoog backwards”

In the aftermath of Infiniminer, feeling nothing but disgust in the pit of my stomach, I told people that I was done making games.

A month later I knew it was a lie and that I could never stop making games, but the truth of the matter is that I’m done making these games. The forums will remain up and I will continue reading all comments, but it’s unlikely that I’ll be posting new content any time soon. Thanks to everyone who played and enjoyed my games; without you, most of my recent creations probably wouldn’t exist.

– Zach

51 Comments to “goodbye is only eybdoog backwards”

  1. July 9, 2009 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    Huh? What’s wrong with creating these sorts of games… they’re fun, they’re different! I love em; ah well… was good while it lasted :-S

  2. Sallen's Gravatar Sallen
    July 9, 2009 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Well, of course you will have your reasons, but I was really looking forward for your next brilliant idea. Anyway, thank you for this gaming adventure you have taken us through, and if you ever come back we will be here, waiting and eager for more!
    Thank you!

  3. Nemoricus's Gravatar Nemoricus
    July 9, 2009 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    I’m sorry to hear this. Your games are fun, clever, and very well done. I was also looking forward to what you would come up with next.
    Well, it’s your choice, though.

  4. Blueation's Gravatar Blueation
    July 9, 2009 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    well, I did expected something like this:
    1.: you made games about almost all engineering stuff and such.
    2.: you haven’t posted anything lately.
    3.: most briliant people will go search for anything new over time.
    One question: what are you going to do now then?
    good bye
    P.S.: I was looking forward to a new idea of you too…

  5. Blueation's Gravatar Blueation
    July 9, 2009 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    P.P.S.: I will check your website every month, in case you DO come back…
    again goodbye, WE WILL MISS YOU!

  6. CoupleK's Gravatar CoupleK
    July 9, 2009 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for making the games that you did. I’ve had a wonderful time playing them, their clever engineering-based premises make for a fun and engaging experience.
    It makes sense that you might want to move on to doing other things. Be proud of what you’ve made, take what you’ve learned, and move on to whatever it is you’re passionate about now. I’m sure that your gifts can find another outlet to do great things.

  7. Fiddle's Gravatar Fiddle
    July 10, 2009 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    This game was so badly written it took only two hours to destroy.

  8. greymario's Gravatar greymario
    July 10, 2009 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    get out zach

  9. Quadrapod's Gravatar Quadrapod
    July 10, 2009 at 1:47 am | Permalink

    I don’t understand why you feel disgusted about infiniminer. you managed to make an excellent and fun sandbox type game. I have played your games since Ruckingenur was posted to hack a day and found all of them very enjoyable; That said good luck on whatever you choose to do next.
    You said your done making “these” games but will your next game, regardless of context, be posted to this site?

  10. Jen's Gravatar Jen
    July 10, 2009 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    As much as I like Infiniminer, it’s the KOHCTPYKTOPs that I’ll miss the most. I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a game that much since I was 14 and got a box of 7400-series TTL for Xmas.
    Thanks for the good times, Zach. You’ll be missed.

  11. compsciguy's Gravatar compsciguy
    July 10, 2009 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Why are you all acting like the already-made games are going away? The site and the forums are going to stay up. Zach will keep on reading the comments and checking on the forums. The only thing different is that there won’t be any NEW games for quite a while.

  12. /rand,'s Gravatar /rand,
    July 10, 2009 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    Sorry to sound like an idiot, but what happened to Infiniminer? As someone who never played (I’ve lacked a computer for two months now, and only aquired one recently) should I fear installing it?
    In any case, thanks for CoAE, Zach. I know that that sounds like I think that you’re going away forever (I know that you’re not) but it’s arguably the best game I have ever played, and the only game that I have ever cried after beating, so I feel the need to say something.

  13. Izzy's Gravatar Izzy
    July 10, 2009 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

    Seriously? I’ve played KOHCTPYKTOP every day for over a month–replaying each level in search of elegant solutions, and building my skills in the hope that you would release a sequel on par with Magnum Opus Challenge. I love this game.
    Idea for a constructor expansion: each circuit built becomes a chip that can be used on later levels, building up into the final challenge–constructing a fully functional microprocessor. I’m truly inspired by this.
    I mean, at the least you could release a level editor =-/

  14. compsciguy's Gravatar compsciguy
    July 10, 2009 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

    Infiniminer caused Zach to become besieged by source code and mod requests and the like, so he made it open source. Unfortunately, someone created a client that goes uber-fast, can hover, walk on lava, build anything, etc. and then they stuck it on one of the filesharing websites.
    Now we all have to deal with hackers now and again. If you get a client that is modified in any way (other than the official one at github), then don’t join any servers that say no hacking. You may end up getting banned or something.

  15. PTTG's Gravatar PTTG
    July 11, 2009 at 1:19 am | Permalink

    I found your work fascinating and enjoyable. Good luck on whatever it is you next plan, and I do hope that sometime in the future you consider working on games again.
    You’ve created an outstanding series of games, good luck.

  16. aliendrone's Gravatar aliendrone
    July 11, 2009 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Well, I can’t think of much to say, so I’ll keep it short. Thanks for the great games, Infiniminer has inspired me to create my own game along similar lines, and I wish you good luck in all your endevors.

  17. Nathan West's Gravatar Nathan West
    July 11, 2009 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    It took 2 hours of Google searching to rediscover the alchemy game I suddenly remembered playing years ago, and I’ve not yet found a source of more engaging or interesting games. These remind me of the fun parts of using my brain, as opposed to hours spent withering away in the latest college course or tower defense game. Here’s hoping you come back soon.

  18. Fish's Gravatar Fish
    July 11, 2009 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    The internet is full of trolls, it is probably only a matter of time after you publish something that you fall by their hand. It is a pity you fell so soon, but your light shone brightly and fiercely while it did. I continue to love and replay your games. Your work will be missed, I hope you return, good luck and farewell.

  19. Zach's Gravatar Zach
    July 11, 2009 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the kind words, guys.
    This domain will continue to track me for the foreseeable future, and I plan to continue using the mailing list for any important updates. Which is important, you know, because of all the awesomeness sitting on the horizon.

  20. July 12, 2009 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo I’m upset!

  21. Ghodere's Gravatar Ghodere
    July 12, 2009 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Somehow… I saw this coming. I think it’s been winding down for a while now, but as you see, you leave behind a legacy. G’luck, mate.

  22. Nicholas's Gravatar Nicholas
    July 12, 2009 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Wow – I’m really sad to hear that. I was feverishly addicted to Ruckingenur for ages – and I loved all your games. Thank you, and good luck (but im still secretly hoping you’ll change your mind).

  23. Blueation's Gravatar Blueation
    July 13, 2009 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    I was wondering: Who won the “design a game for engineers” challenge?

  24. Axoren's Gravatar Axoren
    July 15, 2009 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    You bum! We’ll miss you!!! You can’t just leave us! We created you! We can destroy you!
    Well… actually, we can’t. But that doesn’t mean you should just ditch us after all we’ve been through!

  25. Zach's Gravatar Zach
    July 16, 2009 at 2:33 am | Permalink

    Blueation: I wouldn’t say there was a clear winner, but I sort of covered the results here:

  26. payjack's Gravatar payjack
    July 16, 2009 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

    Thats one sad info. I allways liked your games – well, most of them at least. I still have absolutely no insight in Constructor.
    Anyway, I’m in despair now. No more games twisting my neurons till I faint T_T

  27. Garreett's Gravatar Garreett
    July 18, 2009 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

    By “THESE” games, what exactly do you mean? Nut-hard puzzlers? Multiplayer games? Original games?

  28. Axoren's Gravatar Axoren
    July 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    The games that the world around him lies in wait for the opportune moment to pounce upon the glorious thing with its greedy claws and raise the sacred device of merriment above its head and shout “THIS IS A GOOD GAME! THIS IS WHAT WE NEED! THIS IS WHAT WE WANT!”.

  29. tp1212's Gravatar tp1212
    July 19, 2009 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

    All I have to say, is thank you for some wonderfull times.
    I had a blast with every single one of your game’s and hope to see you again sometime… somewhere… out on the internet… I might even have made some games for engineers myself by then.

  30. Xolroc's Gravatar Xolroc
    July 21, 2009 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    I was waiting for a third Codex…

  31. jack's Gravatar jack
    July 21, 2009 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    A month later I knew it was a lie and that I could never stop making games, but the truth of the matter is that I’m done making these games.
    I hope he’s meaning the sorts of Infiniminer.

  32. Nate's Gravatar Nate
    July 21, 2009 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for all the fun games, Zach. I hope you come back. I do have a few game ideas (kinda…). Email me if you want one. Nathanjb@iowatelecom.net

  33. July 23, 2009 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    I know it was forever ago that you posted this (Internet time, of course, where everything changes) but I’m thanking you now. I know what it’s like totally, it starts as a side project, you put some effort into it, get some good feedback, and put more and more in. You may or may not be otherwise becoming busier, and then you find it sucks up your life. And I won’t ever accuse you of never publishing my level from the Ruckingenur Challenge, as I never got back to you about my modifications to the other levels, or to my own. Game development is tough stuff. And your games are free! Even some of the very earliest titles like Gregor Mendel’s Pro-Botanist made me happy and I got to watch as you went from games like Ruckingenur I all the way up to Infiniminer. I hope Microsoft treats you well (you were telling the truth on Facebook, right?) and you’ve gained from your experiences with this blog and what you’ve developed.
    Let me tell you a little story. I had registered for a national competition in student game design, and assembled a team of four core designers and about five extra, less advanced members. I had a month and planned all kinds of cool stuff, deciding to code it in Java, create a Sprite class inheriting JComponent (behaving like a button or whatever), and interpret XML maps (with my AXMAP format). Two weeks before the deadline, guess what I had laid out? A logo, a name, a Google Code repository, and an idea. So I work like mad on the thing, and before I know it, it’ll properly load images, next keyboard controls work, the screen scrolls, and collisions and death are handled properly. My favorite quote in debugging the Sprite function "public void murder()" was this one message getting spammed to the debug console: "I, floor, have been murdered."
    Two nights before the due date, we’re (the four or so of us) in the hotel (had to travel half way across the country, but also had other reasons) and I remember I spent more on caffeinated soda than on food that day. And we almost had it done! Finally, we were down to an hour before deadline, and the trig wasn’t working. The trig that would determine the bullet’s projectile. The entire point of the game. That darn formula, x = cos(tan-1(mouse.y/mouse.x))*distance, y = sin(tan-1(mouse.y/mouse.x))*distance, wasn’t working right. We would practically be killing ourselves if we were to get it done at that point. I stood up, and announced this question:
    "Who had some fun at all or learned something?"
    Everyone kinda said yes.
    "Then mission accomplished."
    With that I sat back down and closed my laptop.
    So we never finished it, it was uber funny to watch the buggy thing try to be played, and we learned a lot. That’s all that matters in the end, if you benefited from it.
    So, Zach. I ask upon you one question:
    Did you benefit?
    Sincerely signed,
    You inspired me.

  34. Fey's Gravatar Fey
    July 26, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Я из России. В мае я познакомился с Infiminer, и эта игра стала одной из моих любимых игр. Очень жалко, что Zach не будет продолжать деятельность, эта игра мне очень нравится. 🙁

  35. jack's Gravatar jack
    July 26, 2009 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    hey fey, zach can not speak nor read russian or cyryllic letters.
    === straight babbelfish, should be understandable without cleanup ===
    I from Russia. In May I was introduced from Infiminer, and this game became one of my dear games. It is very pitiful, that Zach will not continue activity, this game greatly pleases me.

  36. Blueation's Gravatar Blueation
    July 26, 2009 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    @ jack:
    I think zach can use babelfish or google translater or something like too.

  37. compsciguy's Gravatar compsciguy
    July 27, 2009 at 2:41 am | Permalink

    Yeah, but some of us either didn’t think of it, or we’re too busy playing Zach’s games to do it, or we’re just lazy (or some combo). Thanks, jack!

  38. Blueation's Gravatar Blueation
    July 27, 2009 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    I have the google toolbar with the most handy buttons on it, like google translater. but, yes some people are just lazy.

  39. Fey's Gravatar Fey
    July 27, 2009 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    jack, thanks

  40. July 27, 2009 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    So long, and thanks for all the fish!

  41. Schwerpunk's Gravatar Schwerpunk
    July 28, 2009 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    Aww, man! I just found out about this thing…
    Good luck in your other endeavours, anyhow. Infiniminer is seriously cool. 🙂

  42. jack's Gravatar jack
    July 31, 2009 at 12:51 am | Permalink

    Blue, I refuse to use the google tools, I find it annoying enough already that Firefox sends stuff all the time I’m searching something

  43. jonJon's Gravatar jonJon
    August 9, 2009 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

    any chance of you releasing the source on some of you other games, just because you’re not making any more doesn’t mean that someone else can’t learn/build from it

  44. Zach's Gravatar Zach
    August 11, 2009 at 12:42 am | Permalink

    jonJon: If you have a question about making games, feel free to ask me directly. At the moment I don’t have any plans to release the source for my other, non-Infiniminer games.

  45. stevansonium's Gravatar stevansonium
    August 11, 2009 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    You made some really fun/unique games. Few games exist where you have to think.
    Anyway, good luck with the future.
    Hope you end up back here again.

  46. September 15, 2009 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    Hey zach, I just remembered, How were the waffles?

  47. Norseman's Gravatar Norseman
    September 17, 2009 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Hey Zach, if we all pitch in some money, how much would you want to make an expansion to KOHCTPYKTOP? I’d be willing to pitch in $10-20. I’d be interested in being able to make microchips to abstract out of the details and make more advanced circuits. A challenge editor and some new challenges would entertain me for months.
    If you’re not willing to make an expansion to it – even for money, then could you make it open source so that other people can build expansions to it?

  48. Lars's Gravatar Lars
    October 7, 2009 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    Just wanted to add a note of encouragement. I’ve been playing Konstruktor, and I had played Alchemy in the past… and just now found out they were from the same developer. Cool stuff!
    Glad you realized that you are not done making games. Don’t stop using the unique gifts God has given you. I love making games as well, and it would be a shame to let those talents and passion go to waste.

  49. Marklar's Gravatar Marklar
    December 9, 2009 at 2:18 am | Permalink

    Hey Zach, I remember in Infiniminer when there were about 20 people playing. My friend and I were really happy playing with the lava physics, and we flooded an entire floor. People were mining under the lava to get to ore… making little safety shafts…
    It was really fun. I actually still play Infiniminer. Making lava bridges and sculpting the rock is really relaxing; like playing with dominos.
    It’s one of my top favorite games, and I really thank you for the great memories it’s given me.
    I hope you don’t stress too much about how crazy people got before, and maybe you’ll come mine with me and my pals. Later.

  50. December 19, 2009 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    So, what sort games are you going to create now?

  51. Lallander's Gravatar Lallander
    December 30, 2009 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    And here I was hoping we might see a non xna (mac / linux) port of Infiniminer.
    I also love KOHCTPYKTOP, and would love to see a stand alone version of it as well. I hope you get over your slump and get back to making these fantastic games.