Nitrome Game Jam!

09 Jun 14

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If you know me just a teeny tiny little bit, you’ll know I absolutely love game jams. They’re one of the brilliant & unique things in our industry that just seep creativity in such a short amount of time and that’s why I just love them! And when I heard Nitrome was having a game jam, even though I’m neck deep in other projects that I can’t wait to show people about – I decided to just drop everything and have some fun! So this game jam was a 5 day one (Monday – Friday) and sadly I really couldn’t do the whole week, but instead of just not doing it, I grabbed Alex and Yuya (Didn’t grab them, a simple message done the trick, no grabbing involved here!) and got to work on an idea that had been floating around my head ever since the theme ‘Dreams’ got announced on the Monday.

Alex initially drew our little guy. Pretty cute for someone who eats dreams, right?

Alex initially drew our little guy. Pretty cute for someone who eats dreams, right?

So yeah, like I said, we started pretty late to this game jam and I had an idea floating around my head that I pitched to Alex & Yuya to see if they could get involved with me. It was kinda totally against what I initially thought when I read ‘Dreams’ and I think it’s why it stuck so well with me. Initially when I thought ‘Dreams’ I pictured really beautiful cloud based worlds and thought about some kinda exploration based platformer, essentially exploring dreams – then I thought this may be too obvious and that maybe other people could have just interpreted the theme like that – so I kinda went the opposite way.

Early mock up of the game. Starting to take some shape but it's lacking that mood and environment that I wanted - art style is what we wanted for something that we'd have to do so fast too.

Early mock up of the game. Starting to take some shape but it’s lacking that mood and environment that I wanted – art style is what we wanted for something that we’d have to do so fast too.

Then Baku was born! From the start, I wanted this to be a top-down exploration game with challenging stealthy stuff thrown in there too. Essentially you’re a dream eater and you’re in a random house, you’re pretty hungry so you’re sneaking around trying to find dreams to snack on that are littered around rooms with sleeping folk in them. One problem though, you’re a bit clumsy and just make far too much noise!

So yeah, you’re sneaking around the house trying to make as little noise as possible & eating dreams. As simple as that I guess.

Our final title screen for Baku!

Our final title screen for Baku!

Feature wise, there is a tonne of stuff I wanted in here however within the three days, I really just couldn’t get them in there. Saying that, I’m pretty proud with how well we coped and how much we did in the time though!

It even got to the point where Alex actually put stuff in the tutorial for features we were planning to get in the game. Stuff like:

- Walking around (Since he’s heavy footed) slowly increases alert, your ‘disguise’ ability slowly decreases alert energy & if you’re stomping around a room with a sleeping person/dog in they will actually wake up and spot you.

- A few more rooms in the house. Who doesn’t want more rooms?!

- Each room will have a threshold so you don’t always have to hit 100% alert to fail the room, if there’s more people sleeping in the room or if there’s a dog, the threshold could be lower!

The finished look for the game jam entry

I think we’re really considering putting in some more time in to this and getting it a proper release on the web, could be fun and I really think it’s a fun little game with potential. What do you guys think though?

oh oh oh, you can play it here too! http://chris-jeff.com/nitromejam.html

Or hit up nitromes site and you can vote I think, sounds pretty cool! http://www.nitrome.com/jam/games/bakuthedreameater

Over the next few days I’ll get a proper page put up for Baku too so it’ll pop up on the side of the site.

Fun fact: Yuya actually named the character Baku – I think it means spirit in Japanese and he’s Japanese so y’know. It stuck with us!

2014 Flash Games Market Survey!

02 Apr 14

During the past year, the flash game market has witnessed the surge of HTML5 as a significant contender to browser-based games, the rise of Unity’s web player, the corresponding end of Unity’s Export to Flash support, and a rapidly swelling “flash is dead” movement. Many argue that Flash’s competition, at least on the web, has yet to present a comparable replacement, but the downtrend is difficult to deny.

The recent closing of Mochi Media, one of the few significant industry stalwarts of the web-based Flash Games Market, is sure to have a significant impact on both the current market and it’s future. The goal of this survey is to both assess the current status and direction (or change there in) of the market, as well as to continue one of the most important industry contributions that Mochi has made over the past several years: the Flash Game Market Survey.

We have carefully reconstructed this survey from Mochi’s past surveys in order answer the most pressing question plaguing our market today: “What now?”

Our goal is to get at least 1,000 respondents in order to maintain the survey’s statistical relevance and correlation to previous years. So, please forward this survey to as many of your fellow Flash game devs as possible.

The results of this survey will be shared publicly, although we expect the collection period to take a few months in order to reach the needed response level. So, please be patient, and you’ll get all the juicy stats from the survey! In a nice edible form.

So yeah hit it up and share it around <3

http://dev.playvue.com/2014-flash-games-survey/

Farewell Mochi!

24 Mar 14

1309v9-max-250x250 It’s sad month! Mochi Media announced they were shutting up shop (And at no decision of their own) after Shanda decided they kinda didn’t want them any more. Huge shame as Mochi has really turned to many so many hobbies in to careers and fostered the growth of the Flash game industry and really been around since it started kicking off more and at its peak! Sadly it all closes down on 31st march :(

Not only did Mochi really open my eyes (Whilst I was 16 actually!) to the flash game world and still continue to support me as it turned from a hobby to a career but I was honoured to have them work alongside Ernesto and I with Mochi London. They really helped us a tonne financially and with their expertise on running events (From FGS), so it’s sad they won’t be involved any more as Colin is a legend!

So speaking of Mochi London – it will still live on! Just because Mochi went away, doesn’t mean this event will. I’m still willing to put in the time and energy to continuing it all as from the start we wanted to get the community in one place and get creativity flowing, this can still happen! The only thing is I won’t have funding for the event so I’m going to keep my options open and feel around and see what I can do with the event. I still want it how Mochi London was but I want to open the event up a lot more to the indie scene as a whole as in the past it’s been pretty Flash heavy. So yeah, Mochi London will still live! ;)

Here are some cool stories I’ve screen capped from the forums. Seriously so cool to hear everyone’s stories and how everyone really started off the same way when Mochi was around!

My little Mochi story I posted on the forums:

So I started developing games 7 years ago in 2007 (Christ!), it was around the time that Mochi was in beta actually! And to be honest, I feel like I’ve grew up to what I am today with Mochi, so it sucks to hear this! Whilst I was deep in Flash at School and just experimenting, Mochi allowed me to earn whilst I was still picking everything up and even after I was established and earning from sponsorships, it was still bringing in revenue. Aside from the Ads too, Mochi provided some great services, especially Mochibot which I’ve pretty much religiously relied on for accurate and reliable analytics!

One of the best things I’ve got to work on was Mochi London with Colin. I learned so much from it all and having you guys there to really guide me was just priceless! I think it was a brilliant three year run for us & can’t thank you chaps enough for getting involved by both financially making it happen and pouring your time in too!

I think without Mochi being around (Even just in terms of community), it’s going to leave quite a hole and I second what Wayne said, it’d be good to get somewhere to regroup and kind of keep the community side of things going.

So yeah, definitely sad and it’s been a pleasure! Mochi seems to have incubated some insanely talented and cool people so even though you don’t need it, I wish you all the best with what you end up pursuing and hope it’s awesome!

Other peoples stories:

So if you’re a developer/publisher using Mochi’s services/have money in your account, you should head over to http://mochiland.com/articles/mochi-media-winding-down-services-end-date-of-3-31-2014 and read the official announcement! Also before the 31st of March you should hit up the community and show some love, it’s great to see how people have came together and shared their stories! https://www.mochimedia.com/community/forum/topic/mochi-media-winding-down-services-end-date-of-3

But yeah it’s been a privilege to work with the folks at Mochi and I wish every single one of them good luck in finding somewhere new. Huge shame it had to happen! Nice one Shanda….logical decision.

Super Indie Pals – Episode 9!

23 Mar 14

 

Episode 9 – Pesto Force

In this episode we speak to flash game legend Nick Pasto AKA Pesto Force AKA BoMToons. Nick talks to us about his background, and the road to getting his upcoming game Super Chibi Knight successfully funded on Kickstarter and green lit on Steam.

Click here for the NO MUSIC version.

Links:

BoMToons Newgrounds page - 

http://bomtoons.newgrounds.com/

Pesto Force - 

http://www.pestoforce.com/

Super Chibi Knight (pledge now!) - 

http://www.superchibiknight.com/

Flexicade - http://flexicade.com/

Crawl - http://www.powerhoof.com/crawl/

Super Indie Pals 7 & 8!

24 Feb 14

I realised I didn’t blog at all about Super Indie Pals episode 7 so I thought I’ll wrap it together with the 8 blog post and you can have it as one big Super Indie Pals sandwich or something like that!

Episode 7 – 2013

In this episode we review the year of 2013! We discuss the projects we released, our highlights and the biggest lessons we learnt over the past year. We also look forward to 2014, and talk about our plans and what we hope to achieve this year!

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Episode 8 – Con Artist Games

We speak to Chris Condon of ConArtist Games, creator of the hugely successful Last Stand series. Chris talks to us about his journey, inspirations, and the challenges him and his team faced creating their ongoing MMO The Last Stand: Dead Zone.

 

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Did you know Space is Key is on mobile?

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