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Old Jolty is now available on Windows Phone!

Old Jolty Windows Store Icon

Old Jolty is now available on the Windows Phone Store!

Clunking ungracefully through the stars, Old Jolty has now made its way to Windows Phone! Ultra special thanks to the organisers and staff of the UK’s Largest Unity Porting Event for providing the software and hardware which made this possible.

The windows phone version contains some slight graphical improvements that’ll make their way to the iOS version eventually.(I’ve got some other improvements for it planned but i’m holding back to see if I get some feedback from this version I can act on first.)

I hope everyone had a good Christmas and i’m wishing you all a Happy New Year!


Old Jolty is now available on the App Store

Its finally up! (Well technically its been up since the 15th.) Now squidly adventures, involving perhaps an unparalleled amount of turning around in circles, are available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

The last hope for humanity lies with the tired and rusting space freighter Old Jolty; decommissioned long ago but haphazardly brought back to life for one final journey. She has no weapons and she can’t turn left, but she must save the cosmos!

As you may have noticed, its now time to bring myself to the bit of this cycle i’ve been dreading the most, the shameless advertising! On that note any form of retweets, likes, reviews or brief mentions would be incredibly welcome ^^.

Old Jolty

Ta-da! Its done! Well… mostly. If this was a just for fun project i’d probably go ahead and distribute it as is and be loyal to the deadline, but this will be going on my portfolio. Thusly it deserves a whole lot of extra scrutiny, testing etc. Still assuming nothing dramatic happens it should be live on the app store sometime this month.

If you’ll allow me to indulge my pedantic nature a moment, theres a couple of differences between the game and video I feel obliged to mention. Firstly, the mission menu has two scrolling arrow buttons not one. Secondly, the later gameplay from the footage has a return to menu button in the corner. These differences are due to me recording the game running on a Mac instead of an iPhone.

I considered using this post as my onegameamonth submission and sneakily editing in a link here later when the games on the store, but that seems a bit too cheeky. So I think i’ll just have to put Old Jolty down as an August submission.

It’s a Matter of Squidurgency!

The end of one of old nelty/old jolty's levels, with glorious placeholder graphics

The end of a level, with glorious placeholder graphics.

Well it’s been a strange old month for me so far, what with close relatives getting married and my spontaneous decision to travel up to wales for networking. But regardless of this all of Old Nelty’s metaphorical cogs and gears are now sorted. The game is completely running from start to end through twenty levels using placeholder art. Which means I now have roughly two weeks left before deadline in which to sort out the graphical side of things.

I did very almost upload some videos earlier in the month, but I concluded that people probably wouldn’t take well to the game when it appears to be all about cubes spinning around other cubes until the occasional badly drawn placeholder texture zooms onto the screen.

Its pretty clear by this point that I’m not going to have time to get the game through the app store approval process before deadline, so I’m going to treat my deadline purely as a “this is when the game must be complete” deadline, and use the opportunity afterwards to squeeze in some additional testing prior to sending the game to the store.

That said I need more volunteer testers! So if you know me on facebook and have an iphone 4, ipad 1 or higher chances are I’ll be hassling you shortly.

On a side note, I’m considering changing the title of the game to Old Jolty. So if I suddenly start referring to the game as such, that’s why.

One Game A Month: Old Nelty

Old Nelty Game Early Artwork

Some early artwork to keep things pretty until I start on the game's graphics.

As foreshadowed a couple of days ago, I’m planning to complete a new game next month as part of one game a month.

What’s the new game about? Well…

The last hope for humanity lies with the tired and rusting space freighter Old Nelty that, until recently, was considered decommissioned. (For good reason.) She has no on board weaponry and she can’t turn left, but regardless of that, now she must save the cosmos!

Intergalactic space squid terrorize the universe blocking all trade routes and preventing all-important supplies from reaching their destinations.

Only Old Nelty can defeat the squidly hordes and carry the supplies safely to their respective destinations. But how can she defeat the squids with no weapons?

By spinning around them so fast that their heads explode.

Old Nelty (Working Title), is a…. puzzle game? Based around the perilous task of orbiting spacesquid with a ship that can only turn right. Orbiting one is easy enough, but with each squid you orbit you get faster and you’ll need to make sure you remember to dodge those asteroids on the way!

One thing I’m not sure about is the name, what do you think? Does anyone out there have a better name for a ship? Somebody already suggested Old Melty as an alternative… In which case they probably shouldn’t have parked that close to a star….

It was as if a million unfinished tasks cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

The Den, base of operations for Lunacy’s werewolves

The Den, base of operations for Lunacy’s werewolves. A little off topic I know but I didn’t want to let Hedjeroo’s lovely artwork lie unappreciated on my hard drive for months. It's intended to serve as a between game sessions menu, with buttons spray painted on the wall.

Sadly I must announce that I’m putting Lunacy on hold. It wasn’t the easiest decision but I’m confident I’m making the right choice.

There was only me and Hedjeroo left contributing to the project and yesterday I sat down and attempted to estimate just how much more time it would take to complete. I came to the conclusion that with Hedjeroo continuing to contribute 2d artwork whilst I continue to handle everything else it was going to take at least another eleven weeks. Which is really just too long for me to keep soldiering on given my current circumstances.

I imagine it’s a fairly common mistake for new devs to try something too ambitious with their first proper game. I could compensate at this point and try to “cut the fat off the game”. But honestly I don’t think I can do that without making it a radically different game. One that wouldn’t really do credit to the embarrassing amount of time poured into it.

Instead I’ve decided to take everything I’ve learnt from Lunacy and challenge myself to create a completely different, much simpler iOS game in just one month, (As part of onegameamonth!) It’ll be just me on this new project and I’ll be posting some information on the new game here either tomorrow or the day after.

I have every intention of returning to Lunacy at some point, but regardless I’d like to thank everyone who contributed, gave feedback or support for it. It’ll be back one day!

Development Video #3

That’s right I’m still alive! (As is Mr Green line, dispute my best efforts.) Apologies for the prolonged radio silence, long story short, everyone else has had far more important things going on in their lives lately so I’ve been doing a bit of a one-man development team thing even more then usual over here.

But I’m back on the radio now, and as you’ve probably noticed, I’ve brought some progress back with me. You might also have noticed I replaced the site’s games page with a page all about lunacy with far more up to date information.

I’m doing a bit of reorganizing over here, when that’s done I should start blogging and tweeting more frequently again.

Development Video #2

Another development video, this time with 100% extra ominous green line! Sorry about that, my video and YouTube had a falling out.

Progress Update #6

Ivorie’s character portrait, her werewolf form is based on a white wolf

Ivorie’s character portrait, her werewolf form is based on a white wolf

  • Even more Optimised: As boring as it is to say, Lunacy has undergone yet more optimization! Everybody’s favorite element of games development.
  • Music: Andrews’ awesome music is in game, now if only I could figure out how to squeeze it into the next Dev Vid without me having to stop speaking for ages.
  • Searchable Buildings: Buildings can now be searched for supplies, there’s some definite survival game flavour sneaking into this action game.
  • Close Quarters Weaponry: Melee/Close Combat weapons are in and working! To be specific a particularly nasty looking baseball bat filled with nails.
  • Lighting Overhaul: Lunacy is now lit by a mix of vertex lighting, baked light maps and my sweat and tears. In layman’s terms, it’s prettier!
  • +1 to Scenery: Cars, ambulances, new lampposts, porch lights, new hedges and some suspiciously Cretaceous footprints have been added.
  • +1 to Ergonomics: On screen joysticks are larger, more sensitive and aligned with the camera in a more constructive manner.
  • Camera Upgrade: The camera is now angled in a more interesting way, and automatically adjusts itself should buildings block your view.
  • Smoother Zombies: Zombies now animate and turn more smoothly.
  • Moar Zombies: The zombies in the suburbs have diversified into Classics, Runners, Sprinters and Crunchy Ones and been color coded for your convenience. I imagine I’ll do a post about the differences between these guys sometime soon.

Only the werewolf transformation and survivor tracking mechanics need to be done now. Then all the core bits that make up a game session are complete and focus can move in the direction of menus, journals, leveling up etc.

It’s called Lunacy…. So where’s the madness?

Lupa’s character portrait, she’s an Ethiopian Wolf

Lupa’s character portrait, she’s an Ethiopian Wolf

Going back through our original 29 page design document, I can’t help but notice how incredibly uninspired the enemy types were. For example two such enemies were the bloated zombies and abominations, just generically larger zombie creatures, the result of mutation and/or Frankenstein-esc body modification.

Now that should sound very familiar to just about anyone who’s played any game with undead antagonists. So familiar I doubt their appearance in Lunacy would cause players to bat an eyelash or even briefly consider what those creatures are doing there. After all I’m pretty sure it’s a commonly accepted trope that wherever there are enough zombies in videogames bigger zombies just happen. Even if that’s not the case its pretty much expected practice of any evil antagonistic faction to start taking their undead apart and putting them back together in horrific, if not questionably practical, ways.

So why am I bringing this up? Well Lets face it, by indie standards Lunacy is not a startlingly original game and I don’t think including such a predictable roster of enemies was going to at all help in making it memorable. As such I’ve been trying to take the enemy roster in a new direction.

So what is far more likely to catch peoples eye, make them interested and maybe even get them to think about the situation a bit? A Vampire T-Rex!… or that’s the theory anyway. This all fits back into a thematic flavor I was initially uncertain about. Where in the game fully embraces the ridiculousness of werewolves fighting zombies and strives to push that quirky insanity further as it goes on. Introducing such wonders as a Vampire T-Rex and Zomb-bees whilst still trying to maintain some measure of logic and not entirely unhinge into sheer randomness. Ideally having the characters question the sanity of the increasingly surreal nature of their opponents in their journals as they go on.

Admittedly, I might also be somewhat motivated by me thinking a vampire T-Rex is the most awesomely ridiculous thing ever, though that might just be the fault of my growing isolation-fueled insanity. Anyway I hope you’ve enjoyed this little delve into my thoughts, we’ve finally finished with some of the more tedious development tasks so the next progress update should be far more interesting.