Play this playable demo please!

IT'S MY BIRTHDAY YAAAYYY!!!!!

You can all get me lots of compliments on this SICK PLAYABLE ALPHA BUILD of this game:

FILE > DOWNLOAD

The controls are left click right click and middle click. Here it is in video form if you're apathetic:

What do y'all think? I was askin people about the framerate before, but the general concensus now is that it's fine. The only good feedback I've got so far is a tonne o shit about anti-aliasing.

Is the art total ametuer hour, or does it look like a real game? Make comments and suggestions n stuff! This is the first publicly playable build since it was a 2D flash prototype.

18 Comments

Dev Blog update for May! Also a new Zone of Enders got announced

This is where I was at at the start of May. Check out my older blog posts if you wanna see the concept art and whatever.

Here I am now:

It's a test of MOST OF the weapons I've got. There's a couple more, but the radial menu holds 6 weapons. The last one's kind of a super weapon. Oh also you can throw guys. A lot of it's half done.

I just, an hour ago, zoomed the camera out. Also- this is a weird thing: I've made Flash games at 30fps for ages, and I just realised this game's been running about like 800fps since I started. Appatantly PC games do that by default- what's a V sink?? aaaa I'll figure it out. That's why things are kind of too slow or kinda too fast, anyway.

The plan for this game was to have a seperate coder person, because I don't know a single thing about C#. Well- some bad news there... In the passed couple months I have learnt C#. This is bad news because it suddenly means I now have no good excuse to not do the whole thing myself. Which means way more work for me, which I am kind of not that excited about actually.

I've had pretty much zero contract work comin in recently (art for iPad games and UI stuff for websites etc.) but thankfully people are still buying the last one for some reason. BUT FOR HOW MUCH LONGER??

Yes I do, or did at some point, think these were / are all good names.

Side-note: You guys don't know this about me, but I am absolute crap at naming games. I once worked on a game for a year called "YeahBabyGoYeah: Alright" before switching it to "Legend of Johnny" right at the end. So this time I'm writing down all the names that I think are great, but are probably hilarious and dumb to everyone else. This is a page from my lil book that I note game things down in- I'll definately be scanning this whole thing in at some point and putting it in the game: Call me CRAZY- A GOD DAMN CRAZY FUCKING IDIOT: but I really like "Mango Frantic".

Actually don't call me a crazy fucking idiot, I got a ban warning for swearing at a dude last week.

ZONE OF ENDERS 3

(I should mention that I am not Hideo Kojima, the dev log is a seperate thing. I just threw this in here cos probably nobody cares as much as me)

Patrick fuckin dropped this bomb on the cast (the bomb cast) that "A new Zone of Enders got announced" and nobody raised an eyebrow. This is normal, because nobody's fucking played those games- EXCEPT ME!! ZONE OF ENDERS 2 IS LIKE THE BEST GOD DAMN GAME.

Here's all the images I could find on this new "Enders Project" announced at a Konami event a few days ago:

"Enders Project", bottom left
Kojima Prod.
WHAT? Pretty nuts, right!? Rusted up old garbage robots?

I can't really find any good site I know of talking about it, but from all the bits and pieces it sounds like it's NOT SET IN THE FUTURE, it's apparntly set far back into the past... which is a weird decision, but it's definately interesting. ZoE is KIND OF based on ancient Egypt as well as futuristic robot fights, so this is weird and cool. Also Kojima said the new game could either have an anime look, like the PS2 games, or a realistic action style "such as Batman, X-Men or Spider-Man" which... good luck figuring out what that maens.

One thing I loved about ZOE 2 was that the giant-robots gameplay was all polygonal 3D, but the PEOPLE having conversations were always drawn in 2D animation. Because the robots are like a hundred feet tall, these 2 art styles were never stood right next to each other, so it always made sense. What I think would be COMPLETELY AWESOME FUCKING AMAZING is if the game was 3D polygonal, but all your codec conversations were live action camera footage of people in X-Men costumes poking monitors and shouting things... but that's probably not what it is.

ANYWAY: INTERExCITING!!! Do you give a shit about Mango Frantic, OR Zone of Enders? If you do, please comment, because these blog posts get literally 1-2 comments every month and it's starting to feel really depressing.

1 Comments

Transitioning from 2D games to 3D games

Hey this is a blog of my game dev exploits.

I've bin makin Flash games, and I want this one to benefit from all the lights and effects you get in 3D, so this is my first real swing in this territory.

BOY, IT'S BIN A ROUGH WEEK! I started off and I had all this concept art with colours where light to shadow moves along two different HUEs instead of just getting darker. So I could have a game that was all shaded, but without having any dark desaturated grays, so it'd always look colourful.

That stuff's easy in 3DSMax, BUT!!!! You take it into Unity and it turns out you have way less options with shaders. Infact you have to make your own shaders. Which I've never even thought I'd be doing. Tried it anyway. Turns out there are tools out there to make it easy to get into, but I really couldn't squeeze anything out of it that wasn't broken in some way :/

Having a 2D animated plane: You'd think it'd just be a straight import right? Nope! You have to make a sprite sheet, then code your own animation function. Moving from Actionscript to C# means doing way more work, it turns out. It's like being in Drew's flight sim game where there's 10 different switches just to warm up the engine before you switch it on, or the wing blows up and you have to start again.

ANYWAY: I guess I'll leave out the hundred other places I tripped up and just skip to where I'm at now:

PRETTY SWEET, RIGHT??

My old idea for what the robot should look like was good, and I liked it:

but you just don't get to see that it's a bear, and I kind of worried that maybe you should. Is that just the marketing producer in me? Should I actually stick with this design? I redesigned it anyway:

Click for animated gif

Trust me, modelling it in 3D and animating it was the EASY PART, getting it into the actual game took all damn week! I feel bad that it seems to have lost some Strider-like quiality that you could see in the first video, so I should re-do that slash effect... Anyway I guess I'm over the hard part now. I only wanted to make a small demo to shop around and find someone else to help. So I'll finish this up and get back to the art stuff soon. Speakin of which, here's another concept art thing I did last week for backstory:

A LEGACY PASSED DOWN!!!!

From the great and powerful arm of the resistance Chetakmunzikha who liberated the people of Mars from Earth, to the fearless leader Chetak, to Chet.

Chet Jetset Jr. Jr.

Aright that's it, see ya around!

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Pre-production blog

Hey, a while ago I posted a prototype for a game I'm doing, and literally nobody made a comment, so I'm guessing nobody's that interested. But here's an update anyway.

I wrote all about what this game is on tinyBuild.com last week

I'm tits-deep in job work on other stuff, so I only get to work on this sporadically, which is why it's taking so long to get anywhere.

I'll sum up what the game is first.

I like shooters, but I hate bullet-hells. That is to say that I like going fast, I like bursting spaceships, and I like giant space-egyptian heads- but I don't like when all that stuff gets boiled down into a slowly opening spiral of purple dots. So I wanna make a scrolling shooter where you can hit guys hard, like a beat-em-up. I want a load of tactile, really physical feeling things like grabbing enemies, catching missiles in mid-air, stealing a guy's shield out of his hand and throwing it back at him etc. Then I want the enemy behavoirs to live up to that, like enemies that circle around you and punch you and have strange interesting abilities.

Read more about the design philosophy behind the game here.

The final game will hopefully be made in Unity and be a strong, capable, functional package; but I'm prototyping it in Flash first becuase that's what I'm good at.

You can play this prototype if you go back in time a month.

Here's some more enemies I've come up with since:

This is the point I figured out how to do THIS:

Enemies that interact with each other. These little pistol ships (which you can grab, and hold as an outward-facing weapon) will swarm around an electric storm ball if one is onscreen. The storm ball will electrocute you and drain health if you get close, so they do it for protection. Also it makes their shots more concentrated around one spot, which means getting hit will FUCK YOU UP!!

The snake guy is an extension of that idea, as it's actually 30+ enemies that will seek out, and hold onto, each other's butts. The idea for this one's evolved since I made this video, he know splits into seperate snakes with seperate heads that chase you. Don't use an explosive weapon like a mine, cos it'll just unclip ALL PIECES and you'll have 30 heads chasing you, and will probably die.

These enemies hold shields, which means they're invincible unless they're attacking. You can see in the video that you can brute-force through the shield, and also steal it off him to wear for yourself. Or throw. Their AI is coded to stand infront of smaller enemies, protecting them and soaking up bullets.

Gonna keep going...

So far there's 10 enemies and a buttload of weapons, all of which you can check out on my Youtube channel. That's a great number for a web game, but I wanna get this to the point where I can sell it for $5 to $10. This is crappo programmer art, btw, it's not gonna look like this. I can DO THAT, but I've not pitched it to Alex, my producer, yet. I wanna have a SOLID SOLID SOLID outline of what the game is before I dive in head-first, cos otherwise it'll seem thin and messy like my last game. Also I'll have to find someone who can code in C# or C++, because Flash will piss everyone off. Hopefully coding this all myself first will let people feel confident that we're not just some idiot jerks.

I'm doing concept art, and I'll be doing more to just communicate what atmosphere I'm thinking of. I want it to be all wild, colourful, impactful Gainax bullshit (which is why there's so much fucking camera shake). Also I want it to be MAD FUNKY and pink as all fuck. You play as a bear riding a mech by accident, kind of... KIND OF!! It's a goofy plot.

Anyway this post is getting really long and is all disjointed. As usual, my GiantBomb posts are an amalgamation of posts I've made on other sites, because I don't wanna spam these forums every week and I don't think anyone here's really that interested in my games anyway. So if you're super interested in how this is getting made, then hit up this kind of rush or read the post on tinyBuild.com.

The main thing is that I'm in pre-production for a chunky impactful shooter, enemies do cool things, it's all pink and lasery, and that's more or less what's up.

11 Comments

Prototyping and designing stuff, inbetween jobs

HEY!!!!! I'm inbetween jobs. My last game is done, and my next game hasn't started yet, so I'm filling in spots of work for this giant industrial webgame megacorp.
 
First off: Here's a tiny webgame I made a couple years ago that wasn't allowed to come out. It finally just came out after being in licensing limbo for ages. It's an arcade beat-em-up crossed with ExciteBike... I think it's my favourite game I've made in a long time, I really like it.

Here's what I'm doing at gigatech megacorp inc.: My first job was to update the mascot for one of their many hundreds of sites. I wish I could show the concept work I did cos it looks really artsy and cool, but I bet I'm not allowed. Here's the short version:

Take this, and make it look less like it's for babies.
 and here's what I did. After many dozens of iterations.
and he's being used all over the place now.
I guess this lil guy is my responsibillity now, which is really fun. I do all the art and animation concerning him/her. I have to animate Sega Megadrive style intros for all the games that come through. Remember when the Megadrive used to do this, this and this? Here's mine:
Demonstation - I just wanted to make something Gainax as fuck, and this was a good excuse.
Roadtrip Rampage - out now
Digital Sky - out now
Other game - out soon (I really like this one, he waves around a lot)
 

NOW CHECK OUT THIS GAME PROTOTYPE!!

I'm making a scrolling shooter. Not a bullet-hell, I hate bullet-hells. I think watching a hundred dots spin out from a spiral is really boring, but that's all anyone seems to be making in this genre. So I wanna make my own, which hopefully feels more like a beat-em-up with interesting enemy behavoirs, interesting weapons, and a more tactile, impactful feel. Like going from Unreal Tournament to Gears of War.
HERE'S THE .EXE
It uses the left mouse to shoot, right mouse to attack, and middle-click to select weapons. Hold right-mouse to grab a guy. 
 
What do you guys think? I want this to be my next big swing at a full-on downloadable videogame. It's all just test-art and prototypes for now.
OH- Here's me concepting what I want the mech dude to look like:
 I'm gonna take another crack at it today, but with more of an Iron Man suit kinda thing.
I'm usually super excited about what I'm doing, but Giantbomb is the last place I post updates, so I usually just give you guys THE STRAIGHT FACTS. Sorry if that's boring.
 
SO YEAH- What do you guys think of that biker game? What do y'all think of my animations? and MOST IMPORTANTLY does this scrolling shooter seem cool?
2 Comments

Winding down on my first commercial videogame

Is it a rule that I can't put blog posts in the forums? I can't remember. Is that this site, or another site? ANYWAY-
 
We submitted No Time to Steam again. We fixed everything, packaged both games together, made it fullscreen, and added all that stuff people were asking for. Everyone's asking us if we'll give out codes to everyone who already bought it, but FUCK IF I KNOW, MAN! That is not up to us. We're asking for it, and if we don't get it then it's because they said No. It's not cos of some... sneaky plan so everyone buys it twie, or anything weird. So don't get weird on me about it.
UPDATE:: Steam said No. It's their policy to not give feedback or real explanations as to why, so we don't know why. The only thing they said was " move forward and get the game out there, if it takes off then that will get our interest."
Some fans made a petition (Johan Schei is the name of the guy who started it, so thanks) and y'know... I'm not gonna bet the farm on an online pettition, but the comments are really nice and I'm happy to see people supporting us all in one place. As the developer, my job's finished and I'm moving forward. Alex, the producer, has got a tonne o work to do, talking to people like IGN, the Humble Bundle guys, Desura, and all the places you might see or hear about indie games.
The rest of this post is kind of inside-baseball and all about what my job is in 2012, so you can just skip it if you're not that interested. 

So let's say this is the end o the road for this game. WHAT NOW!? Well web games are pretty fuckin scary right now. Have you seen this Flash game? That's a .swf file that you can submit to any web game site, right now, the same way every other game goes up. And I can't stop playing Kingdom Rush! I don't even LIKE tower defense!!
The last game I sold on FGL went for $1000, I kinda suck at this. Is anyone else still doin the art n code on their own?

Anyway I skipped AS3; jumped into Unity and tried some C#. It's fairly easy, I made a canabalt. I've got some Flash prototypes of what our next full digital-download for-sale game could be, and I'll post those here as soon as they're showing some good ideas. They're thicker and more interesting mechanics than was in No Time, but still something a couple dudes could make in under 10 months.
My ideal plan, hopefully, is to design a game top to bottom, then find a better coder than me. Then we can both focus on two halves of how to make a game, instead of me playing catch-up on every part and it coming out broken.
I wrote a blog post about planning a new game. Comedy games, right? What's up with that?

But coming up with ideas DON'T PAY THE BILLS! I'll have loads of time to not worry about making games for a while, as I've bin brought aboard Casual Social Facebook iPhone App Hashtag-Trending Focus-Testing How-Can-We-Make-This-Look-More-Like-Angry-Birds Megacorp .inc to do some wetwork.
They sent me this, I sent them this, they sent me this, and we all laughed. Am I allowed to share that? Probably not?
I've got a few drobots to redesign, and my main job is to animate a unique intro for all the games they buy. Like the old Megadrive games 1 2 3. So that'll give me some good time to come up with a project #2.
Cos oh my god are indie games good these days or what. I came up with No Time in the shower, that's not gonna fly twice. I personally am NOT expecting to get on Steam (if you ask me)  EDIT-- I wrote these couple paragraphs last week.
 
THAT'S BEEN BLOG!

7 Comments

I went to Minecon and all I released was this lousy trailer

AND THAT WAS MY FIRST CON! Incase you didn't know, I had a booth at Minecon in Las Vegas. Somewhere around midnight I came out of a strip club remembering there was an after-party, so I didn't go to that. Apparantly some "Dead Mice" character was there playing electronic pop music (?)

MineCon was FFUUUUUUUUUULL, it was sold out at 3,000 people. Kids love our game, people recognized us, 4 people asked me for an autograph, 2 people interviewed me, one guy asked "Is I_smell here" (it was Joshua Tomar). I did my post-mortem, there was a good few people and everyone laughed at the right parts, it went really well and none of it was awkward or slow or anything. Anyone who hadn't bought the game had only heard of the web game, or only heard of our Kickstarter.

There was a good handful o people there who made games you've heard of. Octodad, Retro City Rampage, Crayon Physics, Terry Cavanagh, Danny Baranowski-- but I didn't really talk much. I made small talk to a couple people like "hey this looks really cool!" or "yeah man, publishers suck!" but that gets boring pretty quick.

I used to think the art style for No Time was a total cop-out, but looking at some of the art-games around us it doesn't look too bad. A lot of people complimented us on how it looked. Tonnes of people shouted "Oh, there's No Time To Explain!" from across the floor and did the lame joke of saying there was no time to explain certain things, and some hipsters would quote the game or whatever.

Terry Cavanagh (VVVVVV) spoke to me for a sec and said "hey we talked on email that time" which was funny because I remember coming off as a dick that one time (I wont write down the whole conversation) and I ESPECIALLY felt like a dick because Alex (Producer, marketeer, so on) saw his booth being empty as an opportunity to spam it with vouchers for our game... actually the whole convention was covered in half-price stickers for our game; I'm here with a marketing producer and 2 people who organise game conferences, so they basically saw the whole thing through Terminator-vision.

Season 2 has 3 weeks to come out but I've still got plenty of stuff to do on it. I have to make 3 boss fights, 10 more levels, a final cutscene, add in all the hats and make sure the level portal's working properly..

This is the trailer ending I originally had before we came to the conclusion that i was the only person on earth who laughed at it. Still wanna get it out there somewhere:

and who is this?

10 Comments

My first commercial game is OUT!!

No Time To Explain came out on Monday. It's not out everywhere, we had a cold release incase anythin went wrong, it'll be up on Direct2Drive n Gamersgate n stuff (and bitTorrent) after the weekend. Steam? App Store? who knows!

But you can buy it right now right here.

If you don't know what this game is then lemme take a quick quote from funny-games.biz:

Kill giant crab in this funny gun game.

If FOR SOME REASON that's not enough then here's a trailer:

BOY have I bin busy the passed few days gettin this FUCKING STUPID MAC VERSION to work, and playing TF2. Buy it if you want, but yknow I'm not advertisin here. It's PRETTY SHORT! I wish I was The Behemoth or Team Meat but HEY-... Next one's on me. If this kicks off then we'll hire someone who can actually code or draw, an then things'll really get cookin.

A while ago I said we were having a poster contest. Remember that? Well SOMEONE WON! An they fuckin blew us away! I was ECSTATIC when I opened my inbox that day. We put their credit in the game and sent em some stuff. Then a distributor asked us for "box art", so we sent them this.

... MAYBE we should be taking this more serisously as a company... or maybe everyone else should be having more fun. RIGHT??

So yea; game's out- only buy it if you want it- if you kickstarted us with $5 then CHECK YOUR INBOX cos you got it! We would be heading up to PAX right now but one of us twisted their back or something (?). Something happend. I twisted my neck 2 days before release and it FUCKED ME UP!!!! I WAS SO ANNOYED!!!!

We'll check out who's available to help us make a short little iPhone game, and then we'll jump into round 2. Already got a good bit of it made.

Ask me anything! Except things I'd be uncomfortable answering.

Actually do ask me anything, I'll PM it if it's anything bad.

EDIT--- Oh god I'll tell you what's scary: Comin back to web games after about 8 months. I just played Nanobeast on the Newgrounds thinkin "Yeah this'll probably be a pretty average shooter"

...OH MAN. That game is PRETTY GOOD, and it's free, and it's pretty good. oh no

oh boy

ohhhhh goodnight Irene!

97 Comments

No Time update + CONTEST

I just realized Giantbomb is a pretty Photoshop-heavy place so I might aswel post this here. Incase you forgot I'm makin a game, and it's almost done.

HEEEEEEYYYYYY! No Time To Explain is WRAPPING UP!

I'm hastily goin through the game and improving things, we're working on our launch trailer, we know exactly what we're gonna get to work on next, and I'm scared of what people are gonna say!

2 guys over Skype, 6 months, will it be a high calibur debut homerun? or will it be another weaksauce wimper? THE ANSWER IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!

Anyway we're starting a contest to pass the time.

Make a cliche over-the-top dramatic blockbuster poster for No Time To Explain,
by August 5th
send it to contact@tinybuildgames.com
and the winner'll get a credit in the game, and the game for free!

GET PHOTOSHOPPIN'! Extra points for makin it orange and teal, extra points for harsh lighting, extra points for portraying our dudes as badass wifebeaters, jus goof around with it.

ppffffff you'll be way better than half the other nobody's entertin, come ooonnnnnn!!

If you've not bin keepin up to date with all this, then what the fuck man, read our posts! Or read our Twitter; WILL YOU BE FOLLOWER 1000?

Launch trailer comin up, game comin up, exciting news comin up! Ask me anything

16 Comments

Harder Faster Prince of Bel Air

Hey sometimes I make videos for fun cos I like it, but I'm not good enough to make a job out of it. I've done some jokes before, and here's a new one!
 
  

  
I only spend like a day on these things, I use Audacity and After Effects. Thanks to GiantBomb for making me realise that video editing is hillarious.
 
It's not Youtube spam cos DIS MY BLOG!!
EDIT I was super annoyed first cos Youtube makes the video a little bit slower than the music, so it's like half a second behind after a while but-- NO BIG DEAL!
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