this time we are waiting to go into "final cert", which is a two week process leading to "certification" which allows your game to be released.
they don't have a rating certificate from the Antipodes.
we do know what the rating *is*, we've been told that they've been told and all relevant details in the code have been adjusted to reflect this rating
despite that they won't start the "final cert" process until they are told in some other form, presumably by a fax or letter or something and that hasn't happened yet, so
we were actually looking ready to enter "final cert" a few days early, on Monday,
due to lack of said piece of paper, or fax or whatever, we are being pushed back beyond the actual desired start date, which was to have been today.
And so it goes.
Another thing I don't uderstand is the whole "final cert" paradigm anyway.
The last couple of months we've been hooked up to a bugs database and working back and forth between us and them we've been testing and eliminating bugs and clearing out the database until now it is nicely clear.
You would think that would be "certification" but it isn't, you now just become eligible for the "final cert" process (once they get their bits of paper from Australia) which means that they run MORE tests and they COULD ACTUALLY CONCEIVABLY CHUCK YOU OUT OF THAT AND BACK TO SQUARE ONE AGAIN.
Why this process isn't just handled in the one interactive phase I have no idea; all I can see is that it adds two more weeks of fucked up stress to a process that has been more than drawn out and absolutely excruciating, and I really don't know what I'd do if they kicked us back; I think I'd be heading for nervous breakdown territory right there.
I used to tell how final test on T2K for Atari was the most stressful thing I'd ever done in the biz. I now wholeheartedly rescind that. Final test at Atari was a holiday, it was a finite process with an end that occurred in just a few weeks.
Maybe this is how things are done now, and of course I will have to factor it in to any future work i do on XBLA, but I must admit it's just extraordinarily wearing. The worst part of it I think is that apart from the brief periods when you are actually working to fix reported issues there are semi-infinitely more days where you can do nothing but wait and wait and stress and the process just never seems to end - even in the last two weeks there is apparently a dangling possibility of failure.
I'm halfway between One Of My Turns and Comfortably Numb, but not close enough to the latter to be comfortable...