Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Halloween!

It's October 31 - and that means it's trick or treat time.

This afternoon I'll be escorting Ella and Zac around the neighbourhood as they go trick or treating in search of candy.

Ella will dressed in her traditional Halloween costume of a pink fairy. A very cute pink fairy. And Zac will be dressed as a baby boy. A very cute baby boy. And me, I'll be dressed as a game developer (jeans, t-shirt and sneakers). Not a very cute game developer.

And because it's Halloween you should check out some of my spooky Halloween themed games!

Halloween Spirit Board is a little piece of software I wrote a while back that allows you to talk with those that have "crossed over into the afterlife". (NOTE: This is marketing talk, actual product does not connect with the afterlife and is a simulation).

Halloween Harry/Alien Carnage is a cool action platformer full of zombies, monsters and all sorts of Halloween trickery. And it is 100% free!!!!! How good is that?

Have an enjoyable day and happy trick or treating.


Sunday, October 28, 2007

48 Hour Games Rock!

Well the 48 hours are up and the teams have produced some pretty stellar results.

I was on the judging panel with Gaute Rasmussen and Lubi Thomas and we were blown away by the quality of work these guys made in the last 48 hours.

Check out the blog here, where hopefully they'll add some more info about each game.

So congrats to:
* Team Equidna and Ben, Abbey, Michael and Kyall on their "Clunk" platformer game.
* Lurker's Craft and Adam, Kim, Paul, Phil and Scott on their space game.
* Black Van and Nick, Scott, Matthew, Yahtze and Andrew on their "Boltor saviour of the World" game.
* Sif90 and Mike, Matt, Michael, Like and Tom on their "Sticky Geckos" puzzle game.

A highlight of the night was hearing legendary Yahtzee read the prologue to "Boltor" in his inimitable Zero Punctuation style.

Apologies if I missed anyone or got your name wrong - let me know.


Friday, October 26, 2007

48 Hour Game Challenge

Next Level Brisbane Festival is 3 day event focusing on creative pursuits.

As part of the festival there's a 48 hour game challenge running in conjunction with the Brisbane branch of the IGDA. A number of developers are camping out at the QUT campus for 2 days making some cool games that will be judged this Sunday.

You can track their progress at the 48 hour game challenge blog here and even send them a few words of encouragement.


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

MySpace Games

MySpace and Oberon Media are teaming up to bring games to MySpace's social networking site. Should be very interesting to see how other players react to the news. You can find out more in this gamasutra Q&A.

In other news, I made it on a "Who's Who in Australian Gaming" list compiled by gameplayer, which is nice. Not sure about being a child prodigy though... I'm all grown up now :-)

And finally, if anyone is a big fan of Brainiversity (and loves to do the activities every day) and would like to be in on the beta for a new version, drop me a line at support@casualgamesarcade.com with your name, details and why you'd like to sign up.



Friday, October 19, 2007

The Portal Song

Warning: If you haven't played and finished Portal, part of the Orange Box, then you shouldn't read this blog entry!

Okay, you're still reading, so let the spoilers flow.

At the end of Portal there's a very cool song called "Still Alive" that plays over the end credits. Jonathon Coulton is the musician behind the song and he talks about writing and recording the song on his blog here.

It's a beautiful, ironic, bittersweet song and you can listen to it while watching the end credits here.

We need more developers to use great music like this in games. Let's hope Brutal Legend delivers.


Monday, October 15, 2007

E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial

I watched E.T. with my 3 year old this weekend and she loved it. Actually, we watched it a few times - I even dragged out my old E.T. stuffed toy to sit on the couch with us.

Afterwards, I was thinking "wouldn't it be cool if there was an E.T. game"... a decent one (not the Atari one!). And what do you know, today I discover that there's a mobile phone version that's just been released.

Surely a DS version is not far off?

Thanks to Wired Game|Life for the tip off.


Sunday, October 14, 2007

Brütal Legend

Tim Schafer and the Double Fine team's new game, Brutal Legend (click here for Wikipedia spoilers), has the cover of the latest Game Informer. What's cool is that it stars one of my favorite rock and rollers Jack Black (from Tenacious D) as a roadie on a road trip from hell, as well as Lemmy from Motorhead.

Given Tim's warped sense of humor and Jack Black's awesome voice this is one game I'm getting excited about. If he can capture the coolness of Full Throttle, mix it with the fun of Monkey Island and throw in the humor of Psychonauts we just might have a hit!


Friday, October 12, 2007

Beam me up, Scotty!

I thought this was a cool bit of casting:

Simon Pegg, star of the TV series Spaced, and co-writer and star of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz has signed on as Scotty in the new J.J. Abrams Star Trek movie.

I've been a big fan of Pegg's since his early British TV comedy days, especially Big Train and Spaced - so this should make for a very interesting Trek indeed!


Tuesday, October 09, 2007


Brainiversity has just hit the Trygames network - meaning even more people will be playing the game. I have some cool stuff in the works for the series, so the more people aware of the brand, the better!

Trygames has an affiliate program so if you're interested in selling Brainiversity from your site it's pretty easy. Check out their affiliate program here. In the day or so it's been up on Trygames I've already seen some affiliate sales - so it's a great way to make a bit of extra cash.


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Brainiversity Update # 2

Brainiversity is doing really well from my site at www.brainiversity.com - I've got a 12.7% conversion rate which is great. Most of the people are stumbling on to the site without me having done any real work.

Don't worry, I have a marketing plan in place and will be kicking it into gear soon - so hopefully the high conversion rate will stick when way more people come by. I'm just working on a few other little details to make sure the site offers something more to keep people coming back.

Hopefully I will have something to show soon.


Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Textfyre - Text Adventures Strike Back

This was covered on the web a few weeks ago but I thought it was worth pointing out for those who may have missed it...

Textfyre is an interactive fiction developer who plans on putting text adventures back in the gaming public eye. Gamasutra ran an interview with founder, David Cornelson last month in which he outlines Textfyre's plans. He plans to initially sell the new titles online, with a view to eventually selling them as boxed packages in Borders and Barnes and Noble. Not a bad idea.

I can see his logic in thinking there may be a market for text adventures, given the popularity of Young Reader fiction book titles. I used to love text adventures as a kid and found it really easy to lose myself in their worlds. I wonder if this still applies to kids today? Well, I hope he does well with his venture - I tip my hat to him for trying something different in today's market.

If you'd like to read more, Grand Text Auto has some other information here.