Zero point eight point one pontifications
I guess the first thing people are wondering is where did 0.8.1 go. The simple answer is that it's still not quite ready, for various reasons. One being that we didn't anticipate GSoC and all that would entail when giving our first tentative guesstimates, and the other being personal commitments taking up most of the rest of time the developers had. So where is it at right now?
Wiimote support is almost ready. However, the newer Wiimotes with built-in Motion Plus does not work so far, mostly due to lack of developer time. Bringing full support for Wiimotes might be pushed back so as to not stall the release even longer.
Soccer mode has been worked on by Yasin, who was one of the students we would have really liked to have but didn't have room for. Mad props to him for staying with us nonetheless and helping out even though he has various other things to deal with. Right now soccer mode has team support, with markers showing which karts are on which team, and will just need a few additions to be in a usable state. How fun it will be in the first release is left to see, but that will surely be refined later.
The tutorial and Easter egg mode are both pretty much finished, though for the latter there's an acute lack of tracks with eggs defined. 0.8.1 might just become a preview release for this feature, just like soccer mode.
Then there's the GSoC stuff. Yeah, that's not really exciting, so I guess you don't want to read about it.
Just kidding! Cease fire, please! We just had our mid-term evaluations, which means we evaluate whether the students have done what they've promised, and if not what can be done to repair it to get a passing grade. But due to the hard work of our three students there was no question at all that they would all pass with a spotless record. But don't take my word for it; just read the excellent blog posts they've written! Cand with his fancy-pants graphics (making an old-school grump like me wonder whether I should drool or say 'meh'. I kind of do both at the same time, though I'd never want to go back), hilnius with his back-packet trips back and forth the interconnections, and unitraxx with his... wait, where are his blog posts? Oh, there they are! Be sure to read his musings on being a Google Summer of Code student and how he's solved his tasks with dialogs and obligatory screenings. Congratulations to all of you, and keep up the good work!
Blondes on snowmobiles
What's this? Could it be... yes, it is indeed a new kart and a new character! She's Sara, incidentally also a princess and the mascot of OpenGameArt.org. Our resident 3D artist samuncle's first kart, it also features a unique jump animation, which will also be created for the other karts with time. See it in action here:
That's all the weather for now folks, and if I've forgotten something please remind me.