Where'd We Go?! - 09/24/13

First, I, Dayle, must apologize for our little news feed blackout as of late. Life has taken a drastic turn for both of us due to my landing an amazing job at Metamoki, creators of Mob Wars. Those of you that have been following us closely know that I have been working at various companies throughout the life of Greater Good Games, so what makes this job any different? Well, Metamoki had this minor stipulation on the job: no side work allowed! When I first heard this, my immediate reaction was "No frickin way! Not interested!" But, rather than immediately saying "no", I decided to discuss it with Noah, who would be all but out of a job if I took the job. Despite this, Noah was adamant about me taking the job, which was just astounding to me. So, with a heavy heart, I decided to take it.

What does this mean It Hungers and Swipe Attack? Well, Noah has decided that he wants to get those 2 games out there, both for his portfolio and because they have potential to be frickin awesome. So, he is continuing development on those 2 titles with some programmer friends of his. It's slow-going, however, as Noah has had to return to having a full-time job and working on Greater Good Games' projects on the side.

What does this mean for the future of Greater Good Games? Perhaps, this could be the end of the road for Greater Good Games as a not-for-profit entity raising money for good causes through our passion for games. BUT, Metamoki does allow side projects that advance the skill sets of their employees, so I have been cooking up a little free, open-source project. Stay tuned folks, things might have dramatically changed, but Greater Good Games will not die!

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Moving the needle - 06/20/13

It's been a while since we posted anything, and we wanted to share our progress! Dayle has been implementing more and more features into It Hungers, and I dare say is nearly done! All of the food...erm, characters, are imlemented now., the UI is almost 100% complete, and mechanics such as health and character interaction are all done! Now we just need some sound! Here's a little gameplay video where I eat a few humans before getting caught and causing some folks to run away!

Swipe Attack is moving along as well. I've been getting more and more familiar with the ins and outs of Unreal Development Kit. Recently, I've been working on the basic level that will come with the Swipe Attack free download. I was able to solve a lot of the problems I'd been running into including difficulties with the particle system, and troubles with lighting. Also, the visual look of Swipe Attack has moved forward a great deal, if I may say so myself. In fact, I think it's actually starting to look like a proper game! I'm pretty excited! Just like It Hungers, Swipe Attack is in need of a composer and a sound designer. We thought we'd found someone, but it looks like it's not going to work out. So, if you're reading this saying, "Hey, those games look cool," and you'd like to contribute, let us know! You can reach me at noah (at) greatergoodgames (dot) org. Here's a video of me showing off some of the changes to Swipe Attack. It's kind of hard to play against yourself, so forgive the lack of action!

I have some more I want to reveal, but it's not ready for public consumption just yet!

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A new look! - 05/17/13

You may have noticed things look a bit different around here. In an effort to make the site a bit friendlier to our expanding portfolio of games, we made a few changes! I'm really happy with the way things look (thanks, Dayle!) - and the best part is that we did away with the Flash elements to make everything a bit friendlier for mobile devices.

We've also been hard at work developing Swipe Attack and It Hungers. Dayle has been chugging away at It Hungers recently using the Unity engine. So far, so good. The game is shaping up nicely with several of the key actors implemented into the game. There are of course, some tweaks that will need to be made, and more gameplay that's to be added, but I can definitely say that I'm excited that the game is now in a playable state! Here are some screenshots of the latest It Hungers development screenshots.

It Hungers! Gameplay It Hungers! Gameplay It Hungers! Gameplay

The Swipe Attack team has a new member, Olivier Brault. He's a 3D artist and game designer with experience using the Unreal Development Kit. We've been ironing out kinks and defining exactly what can be accomplished with UDK's mobile engine. I've been really happy to have him along, and I can't thank him enough for his effort so far! The initial environment for Swipe Attack is a space level, and that's really almost done at this stage. We're missing the layer of effects in game that add that punch and dynamism to the experience, but the fundamentals are really coming together. Here's a first look at the Space Level!

It Hungers! Gameplay

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Hit a stumbling block, but making good strides! - 02/04/13

We expected to have "It Hungers" wrapped up quite a while ago, but we ran into some unforeseen troubles. That said, we seem to be building up a head of steam again on the project, so that's good news! In addition, we've begun some preliminary work on our next project (no title for it yet) which will be a local multiplayer tablet game. I'll share more info on that as it evolves.Wish us luck!

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Bwaaaarrrrrr!!!!! - 12/05/12

It Hungers - 11/28/12

As I mentioned in my last post, "A Shift in Focus," we're looking into games we can create in shorter intervals. Our first attempt at this is a game entitled, "It Hungers," which follows the tragic life of an orphan child who just wants another bowl of gruel.

Oh wait, no, that's not it at all. In It Hungers, you play as an alien with an appetite. Set in the crowded streets of a city, you run amok trying to feed your insatiable appetite for humans. You will have to avoid detection for as long as possible, and eat often so you don't end up dying of starvation. There are various factors that can alert the people to your presence, but the most common of these is simply looking back to see a giant, slavering alien bounding up behind them.

Our goal with this game was to keep the gameplay simple. Aside from the inclusion of an item system, this game can be played with one button, and has rules that are easily understood and are low in complexity. Essentially, you press a button to run, and upon releasing the button, you will stop running and start looking nonchalant.

Greg Felber has begun working with us to make this project a reality, and while he's getting all of the code together, I made a video mock-up of what the gameplay would look like based off of the assets I had available at the time. There's no sound, and limited interaction, but it should be enough to get the idea across. So without further ado, I present to you, "It Hungers!"

A shift in focus - 10/22/12

Dayle and I recently attended SEIGE in Atlanta. During our trip, we met some really cool people, and attended some really cool talks. Overall, it was a great time and it was really fun to be in a room with so many other developers.

One particular discussion panel stood out to me. We attended a talk about making your second game (appropriate enough for us!) where the panelists discussed common pitfalls in making your second game, namely what I'll call the magnum opus syndrome. Carlos Quinones from The Secret Library mentioned a very cool project they'd come up with that, upon reflection, seemed to be beyond the scope of their team. So, rather than pouring excessive man-hours down the proverbial drain, they just backed away from it (even though it was a cool idea!). Their current goal is to create a new game every few months, namely to build their brand and contacts (I believe he actually said a new game each month...wow).

"Brilliant!," I thought. The idea of creating some short form games using an existing engine (Unity, I think) that would be small in scope, low in asset count, and high in fun really resonated with me. So, that's what we're going to be doing over the next few months! "Project SLUP" is still our ultimate goal, and Dayle is still working hard on Paper Engine 2, but meanwhile we'll have some really fun stuff that we've created and put out in the world.

I set a few criteria for design (namely keeping it simple, stupid), and came up with four possible ideas. After we discussed it, we're moving forward with a one button game tentatively titled, "It Hungers..." I'll be posting an update on that shortly!

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