sillysaurus2 and highCs made some excellent points about ignoring what the gaming industry as a whole was doing, and this went a long way toward allaying our concerns. Then we talked to everyone we could think of who might have reasons why this wouldn't be a great idea, including some good lawyers, and no one could think of anything.
For a startup like CodeCombat where the audience may be interested in the code, open source should be the default choice, and hopefully we can succeed in this and start to make that happen by example.
Way to hack HN. You win my upvote.
Edit: Also, more specifically to the news of them open sourcing: It'll be particularly awesome if people eventually graduate from learning to code on Codecombat to working on its codebase. Since the backend is all node, it's not inconceivable. A virtuous loop for sure.
In particular, I had not heard about http://brunch.io/ before and it looks like an interesting frontend build tool. The config file looks totally readable, even for a complex app like this: https://github.com/codecombat/codecombat/blob/master/brunch....
I can't seem to find ''app/assets/images/sprites'' in the git repo which I was interested in for an RPG project of mine. Were these not included to simply to keep the repo light, or are these not to be released?
Oh yeah, those sprites were in the repo as raster files, but we managed to move them all over to our awesome vector-graphics-in-the-database system just before launch. Check the DB dump to get a copy: https://github.com/codecombat/codecombat/wiki/Developer-envi...
(We did a ton of cleanup work before open sourcing, which managed to get our gzipped GitHub clone download from 203MB to 3.5MB.)
It might be hard to use these art assets in another game unless you take a lot of CodeCombat code on top of EaselJS to render the sprites directly from the vector graphics data, though, because of how they are stored: https://github.com/codecombat/codecombat/wiki/Surface#vector...
I could send you the old raster versions if you did want to use EaselJS for their animations but not go whole-hog with the CocoSprite solution.
A couple of questions:
* I assume you'd be fine with me putting these up on Github, pointing to your project and the license document?
* At this point I only see one "ally" folder, is that because the other ally sprites (magician etc.) were made later when you had the vector format?
Again - massive props to you all for just giving away your hours and hours of hard work! Not every day you see professional-grade artwork like this. Deeply appreciated.
Right, this is an old export, and the latest batch of units have never been exported in raster. Let's keep discussing the best way to get the exports here–Scott has come up with a better idea for it that'll stay current: https://github.com/codecombat/codecombat/issues/94
The SWFs are also part of the old format, so they won't be kept up-to-date; I wonder if we could just build some process around the vector -> raster export Scott's talking about through our site and still be useful.
They're in a custom JSON-vector format, and the app turns them into sprite sheets in the code.
Brunch is pretty awesome, by the way. We chose it because it only compiles the files that have changed, which is good because it takes at least 15 seconds to compile the whole app on a fast machine.
Now we know we can definitely have enough skilled candidates, and though it's only been a week, it is looking really good on the employer end as well.
Seems the only three things we can do with skilled non-US candidates are 1) try to find them work in the US, 2) try to find them work outside the US, and 3) not try to find them work. We are of course focusing on 1), since we currently only have manpower to do matching in person and we live in SF, which happens to be in the US. 2) would be nice if we grew big enough, and we have one employer in Australia so far. 3) would be an unfortunate necessity if we couldn't get an international employer network and it proved way too hard to convince US companies to sponsor visas. But it's going to be up to our employers, not us, to decide whether that's worthwhile.
There is a special level of WTF when you read for now several years in every business magazine that what you do is the most looked for skill-set, that they'll be millions like you needed, and having that conversation “It is so difficult to hire the right kind of people! I’ve tried that for months! — Couldn’t you argue that to get me a H1B? — Nah, it's too difficult: you have to put out an ad and wait three months.”
My point is: your brand can be associated to that kind of experience for 60% of your user-base, or try to avoid it.
Your response seems to come exclusively from your perspective, both as US-based and as an intermediary. Great products are made by walking in the shoes of every party involved.
One thing you could do too, as you have a list of candidates, is some instant feedback to employers on whether or not lobbying for a visa would make sense: just say how many candidates are available for each options, how expensive they are or, better, how the best candidates for each option rank in your game; when they might be available. That would require coding, and I appreciate you have limited ressources — but being open-source should let you hope for an interested party to do it for you. So I guess: congratulation on your strategy.
Obviously the only real risk to their business would be if someone else completely outdoes them, like does everything they do and better with their codebase. Simple clones are competition. Yes, competition makes things harder. But isn't competition what all these capitalists say is the answer to things anyway?? These guys are among the few non-hypocrites.
Will they be able to combat them with better code?
Obviously we all hope it can be, and if this catches on, the Internet would become a much better, freer, more "open" place.
Huge thanks to CodeCombat (gsaines and co)!
Hopefully we can keep all levels free for everyone anyway, since recruiting is looking pretty good as a monetization strategy so far.
After someone takes a job through CodeCombat, the employer would pay them some sort of referral fee. This sort of arrangement is common; a typical fee structure is around 20% of the new hire's annual salary.
Employers get a concrete way to assess the skill of potential employees, job-seekers get free visibility they wouldn't otherwise get (this sort of thing tends to benefit newer programmers whose limited experience doesn't accurately represent their raw skill and potential), and CodeCombat gets paid. Everybody wins.