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Smashing the Game Development Wall

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Pretty T watching the peeps play SCMI have been meeting with some great developers over the past few years since I decided to move up to the bay. Many of the devs are in the same game boat and have a similar psychological makeup, crazy. In reality when we jump into this racket and become “indies” (I use that term loosely) many of us are following a dream which ends up becoming the biggest challenge of a lifetime. You are not only an a.) Game developer, you are also a b.) Marketing Pimp c.) Janky Attorney d.) creative director e.) Marketing Whore and this list can go past Z. Chief, Chef and Bottle Washer is the name of the game. This not only applies for one individual but for the whole team if you are lucky enough to have a few loyal people to burn their bridges of certainty to work on a game.

The last few months have been hectic with PAX, development and funding prep. Things that pop up on a regular basis. Figuring out which events to go to, when to go and when to work is tricky and a challenge in itself. Sometimes when we get into the swing of things and are blindly focused on our projects we tend to forget about the journey and what we went through. We start to gather arms in order to meet the next challenge. This is a mistake that I intend to fix, the path taken should be documented so we can be ready for the next trip or share our journey with others.

Interabang/Mugen booth!

In the next couple of months I will be writing a series of blogs that speak on my experiences with marketing, game development, production with a team and working with Publishers all through my eyes. Some will be video blogs and some will be written, whatever I feel at the moment. Lets Go!

Soundtrack Update with Super Comboman Composer Sam Billen

Super Comboman OST

Composer Sam Billen, joined the Super Comboman Team early on in development soon after our first Kickstarter campaign. He has been putting together some unique themes that are reminiscent of classic games that were staples on consoles when we were growing up. Similar in the sense that they are original and not just bites from popular riffs or contemporary pop songs.

With the music we wanted themes that were iconic and fit with the tropical theme and unorthodox characters of our game. We went through many iterations of the theme and we now have a great balance of ominous boss themes and energetic title tracks that really set the tone for the game.

Super Comboman OST Samples:

Hope you enjoy the and the music as much as we do. We will be releasing the OST with the game and leak tracks as they are available. We have also busted out some interesting sound design ideas which we will be sharing soon as well.

Early OST Reward

Full Song Downloads

We will be sending keys to download the full length versions of the songs demonstrated above to Kickstarter Backers and those who Pre-order Super Comboman at the $15 level or above through. If you haven’t pre-ordered yet you can bust it open through the website. www.supercomboman.com

We will have some up and coming changes to the SCM site soon.

If you want to check out more of Sam’s amazing music visit: www.primarycolormusic.com

Thanks for your support!

New Years Update and Artbook process!

Hey everyone! Bye now you’ve taken a look at the latest video update! Hopefully you enjoyed the video as much as I did making it. More vids will be coming in the future but in the meantime I wanted to show just a rough that I didn’t use for the final but may use in the future!

Here is the Original pose that I was working with prior to switching it to the one seen in video. and below it the image that you see in the video that I decided to go with for the final. While I do still like the original pose, it just wasn’t going the way I wanted it to and I eventually decided to start over again.  As you scroll down I eventually went from inking the piece to what would eventually be a final attempt at colors and shading. While trying to decide how well things were coming along,  I realized I wasn’t the biggest fan of how I depicted her face and made a few edits that you can see in the bottom image. Thanks again for checking out the blog, be sure to keep a look out for more updates!

Team Super Comboman’s Evolution of Crowd Sourcing Campaigns [Videos]

Crowd sourcing is an interesting online innovation. Portals such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo have made it easier and more mainstream to fund innovation without having to be a hardcore enthusiast. People get to be a part of the project and see progress as development occurs “organically”.

Since the conception of our second game we have tried various ways to fund the project through the gauntlet of crowd sourcing. There have been ups and downs when moving forward but there are always lessons learned through each experience. This post briefly goes over our adventures.

Crowd Sourcing Episode 1: Kickstarter
The first time we launched we had just finished our first game and did not even have a prototype. I was working on my Masters degree for game production and management and everyone else was working at Sony or another studio. At the time we were working on some interesting concepts for games and decided to move forward with the idea that is now Super Comboman. When we applied to Kickstart our project we spoke directly to Cindy Au which was THE curator and person really pushing for the games category. She was mad cordial and accepting of us on the platform.

We had no clue how to market ourselves on the platform, there was no template or huge Banner Saga/Doublefine successes. Most of the game section was saturated with board games and figurines, this made it more difficult to stand out and get attention. We spent a few weeks on the pitch. We came up with a game mock up and a script for how we were going to shoot our idea. We checked out equipment from our college..which turned out to be jankyer than an HD Flip cam that we used the next year. We got all kinds of lighting equipment and background garments you can see that we snuck footage of us setting up in the video. The sound was hilarious and the way it was edited has me cracking up to this day.

I made a homemade Struggles Costume for the pitch and a gradually put on more pieces of the outfit through the different segments of the video. I bought a fat suit stomach piece, a Hawaiin shirt, cargo shorts and a fanny pack which housed a stack of oreo cookies. I made the head piece with Styrofoam planet balls from Wallmart that I spray painted. I had no ides that spray painting Styrofoam dissolving the material which actually added a curly hair texture. I put a hanger through all of the balls and made a helmet. It was whack and hurt like a mo-fo and would not recommend mammy made domepieces to anyone.

Continue

Post Crowdsourcing Video Blogs a Poppin!

Due to having an awesome team, a great up and coming game and some awesome supporters for Super Comboman our second Kickstarter was a success.

We have been working on popping out video updates from the team which give insight on what we have been up to and how we have been progressing through production.

Videos after the jump

Blog Revival: Super Comboman Kickstarter, News and Thanks.

Hey there….It has been quite awhile since we posted on our blog. We are reviving it and will be talking about our development process, news and posting videos. We have multiple platforms that we have been updating for news etc.

Check us out on these social media channels:

Twitter: @interabangent
Facebook: Interabang Entertainment

News
We just launched our Super Comboman Kickstarter and have received some great support in the indie game community as well as the gaming community in general. The process has been crazy. We spent around 2 weeks of our time writing the premise behind the video, organizing the awesome people in the video and recording and around a month editing. I will be writing a separate blog describing the process behind getting our Kickstarter together, especially since this is our second attempt.

Here are a few videos including our pitch video to let you know what we have been up to.

Kickstarter Coverage:
IGN:
http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/10/19/five-kickstarters-we-think-you-should-watch

Gamezebo:
http://www.gamezebo.com/news/2012/10/16/kickstarter-picks-super-comboman

Russian Website iGuides:
http://www.iguides.ru/forum/showthread.php?s=a004a618fd8dcb0d4ef2a703e7f959b7&t=71054

SCM Illustrated Artbook:

One of the projects we have been working on is the Super Comboman artbook. We have a great group of artists who are involved and are illustrating some great pieces for the project. There will also be a future post detailing the progress of the book and how we are putting everything together.

Thanks for everyone who checks us out and we promise to keep the blogging alive with more personal material and details about development and more…

Update, Update, Update Video update motherload!

Hey Everyone! It has been a crazy few months, we have been working really hard on our release of Super Comboman. At this point we have the game working on iOS, Android and PC. In March we showed off the game at GDC 2012 and got great feedback and a positive response. I feel that instead of boring you to death I will just post all of the video updates right here for all to see as well as some pics from the last to months. We are updating weekly. Let us know if you have anything that you would like to see in particular. Hope you enjoy!

Back from the past E3 footage

Back in June Ian and I went to E3 to network, check out games that our friends have been working on and preview the latest and greatest. We are just now creeping out of the holiday season and most of the games that we saw at the show are out now, some lived up to the hype and some didn’t, but it was great playing the games early.

Playing Tekken Tag Tournament 2 on an arcade cabinet was also great, Ninja Gaiden 3 was off the chains.

The highlight of the show in my eyes was seeing Ed Boon one of the creators of Mortal Kombat play Street Fighter X Tekken. Super random yet hilarious.

Ian and I had a great time and I can not wait to go back next year.


Meet Struggles Part 3

After a brief history lesson on the creation of our hero Struggles we are back  to our Development blog!!! We last left off talking about our process on how we designed our main character Struggles. This week I’ll talk a little bit about we create our game animations!

First, after a lengthy discussion on character style and moves,  mock ups are made of whatever animation is needed.
Here is the initial roughs! Very simple right?


After the mock ups have been tested in game and they properly represent said action, we move to the next phase…inking and coloring the rough animations!

Now our hero starts to take shape!


Now after inking the final concepts we add a little dash of color! Also any special effects that are needed also get added in for that extra flare!

Final smash is complete!


And finally a shadow pass and sticker effect over all the frames to seal the deal! Pretty simple right? Check back soon  for our next SCM update!!!!

Meet Struggles Part 2: The Emancipation of Struggles

Struggles has gone through a number of changes to date before the nugget headed fanny pack wearing hero that is being developed in Super Comboman. Right now Struggles is a Samoan boy of wonder who has super human combo abilities.

We talked about some of the changes in our Meet Struggles blog part 1. As previously mentioned our hero did not have a tri-tip nugget mullet and was not as whimsical as he is now.

struggles brushing teeths

Before he was a burly mullet wearing adult that was named Struggleman. At that time he was extremely muscular, had a snorkel, a sidekick named Gingerbread man Sam a talking cookie he carried around in his fanny pack and wore a tie dyed mid drift that showed off his pudgy belly jelly.

struggles w/ Gingerbreadman Sam

His origin was caricature of a guy that a few of my friends and I encountered at a Taco Bell in 1996. The guy had a mullet a fanny pack, a football jersey and yep…a fanny pack. My friends and I started cracking up as soon as we laid eyes on the guy. He looked like a rough individual that was completely unaware how ridiculous he looked and was struggling really hard. He were almost on the floor suffering from gut busting laughs and low and behold the guy got angry, turned around and in a Joe Pesci like wise guy voice said: “You want me to beat your ass!” and “Don’t make me come over there and punch in your faces!” As he waddled over We could not stop laughing and the dude jumped up on the table pointed at us and we ran. There was no telling what this throwback of 80′s randomness was capable of and we did not want to find out.

Years past and he became an on going inside joke and we were pointing our strugglers out left and right. Even at last years trip to the Comicon we were counting fanny packs which were plenty in the land of the Strugglers. It is great that people do not have to conform to traditional fashions and believe that there is a struggles in all of us. Our character Struggles does so with pride and style, with his fast attacks and agility.

A real struggler

Struggler 2