For those who don't know, I've been working on a Sonic engine in Game Maker for a long time (read: since 2006). Originally it was going to just be for my own Sonic Freedom project, but as I got deeper into the Sonic community I really wanted to make it open so that others could use it to make their own games as well.
Thus was born AeStHete, which could best be described as a "template" game. Basically a bare-bones Sonic fangame containing nothing but the engine, a bunch of objects, and a host of level creation tools. Anyone who downloaded it would create their own game by "hacking" AeStHete in much the same way ROM hacks are made - replacing assets and editing engine code.
However, I got caught up in the draining process of adding features to make it "nicer"; I wanted to make it all things to all people. So I sunk many months of work into the interface. But at heart I just want to make games, so this wound up frustrating me and slowing progress.
Bouts of sickness, a month's stay in hospital, severe family and financial issues also got in the way. My only way to stay sane was to shelve AeStHete, and work on a focused, specific fangame: Sonic Time Twisted. And after that's finished? Well, I have other games I want to make, also - Sonic and otherwise.
Now, I've given the source of various AeStHete builds to others who were interested, in the hopes it would help them with their own projects. But I always have to do so with the caveat that I can't offer a lot of tech support: they'll have to figure out the code for themselves.
What I'd like to do soon is make the latest source of my GM version completely public, since I don't know how long it will be until I can get the ideal C++ version finished.
Without further ado, here's the site where it will be released later this year. More details will be coming soon, so stay tuned!