The following excerpt comes from the book Shovel Knight, available now from publisher Boss Fight Books. Based around interviews with development studio Yacht Club Games, the book looks at the making of the team’s debut game — Shovel Knight — and how the studio turned its Kickstarter success into one of the most critically acclaimed indie games to date. Shovel Knight served as a vessel for the spirit of 8-bit gaming from the halcyon days when the NES reigned supreme in millions of living rooms. That spirit moved Dan Adelman. A graduate of Columbia University, Adelman spent four years at Microsoft helping to lay groundwork for the business side of the Windows publisher’s original Xbox console before joining Nintendo of America as head of digital content and development in November 2005. “When I joined Nintendo, there were already some plans for digitally distributing the classic NES, SNES and N64 titles via Virtual Console, but there was no strategy for how … [Read more...] about Why Shovel Knight was the right game at the right time
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If your Nintendo 3DS could use an upgrade, you may want to consider picking up the New Nintendo 2DS XL. It seems counterintuitive to “upgrade” to a device with less functionality, but who uses the 3D on the 3DS anyway? The 2DS XL features the same clamshell, dual-screen design and is less expensive than the 3D version. Right now you can get it for even less at Walmart and Amazon, who are both selling the handheld console for $129.99, or $20 off retail price. Almost all PC games at Green Man Gaming are 20 percent off with code APRIL20. There are some exceptions — you can’t use the discount on Far Cry 5 — but games like Final Fantasy 15, Warhammer: Vermintide 2, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance are all included. Presumably this deal lasts through the end of April. Finally, get up to 80 percent off geeky clothes and accessories with ThinkGeek’s spring clearance sale. They’ve got t-shirts starting at $3.99, women’s tops starting at $4.99 and up … [Read more...] about Save on a New Nintendo 2DS XL, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, PC games, and more gaming deals
(Graphs and sales data follow the wall of text to give them context.) Releasing Cogmind felt great--two years of hard work finally reaching a state where I could share it in its entirety. Honestly I would have preferred to release much earlier, but the really early 0.10 roguelike release approach is too risky with a commercial game, especially so with a game like Cogmind where it might otherwise be difficult to instantly convey to anyone only semi-interested in this type of game that it’s a truly unique addition to the roguelike genre and games in general. Surely the long-time fans who played the original prototype understand the significance of what Cogmind aims to achieve, but part of the goal is to attract a broader audience while staying true to the game’s traditional roguelike roots. I wanted it to explode onto the scene with a strong trailer and good gameplay from the get go. More importantly, releasing too early would have also significantly slowed progress, because … [Read more...] about Releasing a Commercial ASCII Roguelike, a Post-Mortem
When Cogmind was rebooted in mid-2013, the intent was that it would be a relatively quick production that would take “about a year” to finish. As we approach the two-year mark, it’s looking like an accurate forecast would have been more than twice that. Of course, the original plan was to simply make “a polished version of the 7DRL, with some new mechanics.” And that would’ve taken about a year. But it turns out the project had so much potential that it seemed like a wasted opportunity to not expand it further. Thus we end up with a huge number of assets, significantly expanded mechanics, and a bigger world and story to go with it. Not to offer these up as excuses--I wouldn’t have it any other way! As one follower mentioned earlier this year: “I’m away from Twitter for half a year and you turn Cogmind from something amazing into something I can’t describe!” Drawbacks of having an indescribable game aside, that’s a … [Read more...] about Cogmind Release Schedule
This is a question I’ve wrestled with for some time now: Should I take the popular crowdfunding route to support Cogmind development? I’ll use this post to lay out the situation and my thoughts both for and against that route. First, a caveat. As a non-US citizen (no, not UK either) it’s not easy for me to do a Kickstarter. Certainly there are international alternatives, e.g. Indiegogo. While I wouldn’t completely rule out IGG, it is without a doubt an inferior option with its poorly-designed site/UX compared to KS. As a company it has very questionable practices in its failure to vet projects that are clearly scams, all in the name of driving up their own revenue. Its smaller scale and lower in-site traffic also result in reduced visibility, equating to less funding. Overall, assuming all other factors are identical, the same project on KS will bring in more than on IGG. So in an ideal situation without barriers Kickstarter is preferred. In my case it’s … [Read more...] about Kickstarter?