Indie game developer and publisher

#GDC Wrap-Up

Posted by April 21, 2013 Uncategorized No Comments

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I was just reading someone’s GDC wrap-up, and I was like “Why the heck did we never mention this? Our last official news post was in JANUARY!”

So everyone listen up, here’s the plan for 2013!

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GO TO A FLASH GAME SUMMIT

So the first thing that happens is you miss your flight from England to Amsterdam. That’s probably the most important thing, so that you have time to round everyone up and catch your 16-hour trip to San Francisco the next day.

I’ve been to America ONCE before, and that was Las Vegas (for MineCon!).  San Francisco is kind of like that, but not out of it’s goddamn mind. We met some friends we’ve made over the years working in Flash games, we played the next Kingdom Rush and hung out with JuicyBeast when they won a Mochi Award for Burrito Bison. I watched basically all the talks at the FlashGameSummit in hopes I could catch up on monetization strategies, and stay relevant in the world of business, but it turns out…

So forget that.
Some of the talks about free-to-play games were pretty fun though. We do wanna release something for free at some point, but we don’t wanna do it with Energy limitations and 5,000 Gold Coins for $5, or any of that hideous bullshit. It’s a dark road, and it ends up with you making a treadmill of infinite scams targeted at kids n the elderly, and that’s fucked up- so once we figure out how to make money on a free game WITHOUT doing that: it’d be a fucking dream to put out a free game again.
Side-note: Everyone seems to know me more as the developer of Robot Dinosaurs That Shoot Beams When They Roar, than for No Time To Explain. Maybe we should start doing Game Jams instead of this one-game-a-year nonsense?

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GO TO A GAME DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE

There’s like 20,000 people at this thing, so first thing you do is get lost. Games are a big deal, it turns out, I went to everything from how FTL: Faster-Than-Light came about, to a post-mortem from the top-men at OnLive.
Apparantly people are still doing Kickstarters, and the first thing most people do when they put on the Occulus Rift is look down and shout “ARGH WHERE ARE MY HANDS!!?”.

We got passed the first bouncer for the IGN party, but once they found out No Time To Explain is actually NOT a sick triple-A PS4 exclusive, they threw us out pretty quick. We did get invited to the Steam party after the awards though! I met the developer of Space-Chem, the animation director on Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet, and as we were falling out drunk at the end of the night, we bumped into the developer of Surgeon Simulator and took a limo all the way to Motion-blur Island.

It was a fun trip.

NEW GAMES

While we were out, No Time was on sale for a dollar or something. That turned out great, but since this is the first time people are really buying it again since January, we’re finding out that this game craps it’s pants on Windows 8, and doesn’t know what the hell to do on certain laptops. Good news is that we’ve dedicated someone to JUST work on No Time stuff, put the level editor and user-level portal back in using Steamworks, and address whenever it doesn’t work.
It’s not me, it’s we found someone who knows how to code a computer game.

We’ve teamed up with another developer! We’re not saying who it is, or what game it is yet, but someone at Steam contacted THEM and ASKED them to put it up, so it’s nuts. The game’s great, it’s a competetive multiplayer game. It all works already, people are playing it, we’re gonna be doing the art and animation over the next few months. Seeing people playing this, it’s like they’re playing Mario Kart or GoldenEye or something, everyone’s just really excited!

The next game we DESIGNED in-house is our first 3D game. It’s multiplayer, it’s kind of a simple concept, nobody’s made this game before, and I’m crazy fucking excited about it. To have new characters, and new art, and a totally out-there, insane concept that feels fresh and runs well… closing No Time To Explain and opening this new game in Unity feels AWESOME, I love working on this.

THAT’S 2013!

No Time will get a good kick in the arse for anyone who can’t run it, we’ll be announcing and releasing a game soon, then announcing our next game after that.

As always I’m super frustrated and worried about the parts inbetween that where we have to represent a business, and be our own salesmen, and be corny douchebag promoters about everything… but ya gotta do it! I’d love to be one of those independant companies who’s a real fan-favourite, like Doublefine or Vlambeer or Capy, but I guess it takes a few years of good games to get there.
I think our games are great, so hopefully you guys focus on that.

AND THAT’S ME TRYING TO KEEP IT SHORT.

About Tom

Tom Brien is the co-founder and creative director at tinyBuild. He does all the art and art direction, alongside with game prototyping and design.