Tag Archives: android games

‘Luftrausers’ a game with style and substance

LUFTRAUSERS” By Vlambeer for the Linux, Mac, PC, PS Vita, and PlayStation3. Rated E for everyone. Grade: A-

What’s the cut-off age for #Atari2600 nostalgia? Would 20-year-olds be familiar with that #system? Maybe if they found a box of their parents’ college stuff in the attic and didn’t mind ruining their eyes by playing it on an #HDTV.

The 2600 homage “Luftrausers” looks like an Atari game with its blocky graphics and minimal palette of two or three colors. You even play it with one joystick and one button. A bare-bones version could easily be ported to the 2600, a short “Luftrausers” demo for a ’70s system that could never handle the full game.

“Luftrausers” isn’t mere nostalgia, though. It might look like something you could’ve bought at Zayre in 1981, but Vlambeer’s new air battle game is too complex to squeeze into one of those small black cartridges. It mixes that 2600 aesthetic with unlockable perks and mobile-style goals to create one of the oddest, most exciting games of the year.

There are two basic actions in “Luftrausers”: flying, shooting, spiraling around in the sky in a massive, unending dogfight. You fire with any of the four face buttons and can just hold the button down for constant offense. Enemy planes swarm around you, rushing out clouds of bullets, while battleships and carriers attack from the sea below. Destroy an enemy to add to your score. Every bullet and midair collision hurts your plane, and if you’re hit too much, you explode, ending your game. The point is to survive as long as possible while taking out enemies and racking up points.

There’s no health meter. Like a first-person shooter, the only way to gauge your health is to pay attention to the color of the screen. As you’re hit, a circle of white closes around you. When that white touches you, your plane explodes and your game is over. You can regenerate health, but only when you don’t fire. So you have to be judicious with your gunshots.

As you accomplish goals, you unlock new weapons, planes and other bonuses that can greatly change your strategies. You can even change the color palette eventually, as on the 2600.

“Luftrausers” is a minimalist game with deep possibilities. Simple at its core, the action never grows repetitive. It’s a great arcade game and a better mobile game.

Reblogged from: bostonherald.com

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Saga Kingdoms – Revolutionary MMORTS

Recently posted on Linux Gaming News and certainly a fine Kickstarter campaign for Gnome Templar. This is another project well worth paying attention too.

Saga Kingdoms is a revolutionary real time MMORTS, focusing on questing and empire building.
They say it’s what Star Craft 2 could have been (in terms of gameplay).
It will be free to play (as it seems from the rewards), but you can pay for additional content.
Currently the project managed to get ~$8,600 of the $100k goal ,with 29 days to go.
From past experiences it’s very hard to get the funds for “free to play” games and I personally doubt that this project will reach it’s goal (although there is always hope).
[gigya height=”360″ src=”https://www.kickstarter.com/swf/kickplayer.swf?” flashvars=”allowfullscreen=true&autostart=false&backcolor=000000&controlbar=over&file=http%3A%2F%2Fs3.amazonaws.com%2Fksr%2Fprojects%2F343862%2Fvideo-165793-h264_high.mp4&image=http%3A%2F%2Fs3.amazonaws.com%2Fksr%2Fprojects%2F343862%2Fphoto-full.jpg&screencolor=000000&skin=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.kickstarter.com%2Fswf%2Fkickskin.swf&wmode=opaque” width=”480″ ]

SAGA was designed to show what is possible in an RTS when it is made for the players and not by the big studios who may be too scared to try something new. We asked ourselves questions such as, What if the world never reset? What if we could figure out how to balance not just two or three factions but six? and most importantly, What if every play session enhanced your virtual empire and not just a rating?

Most RTS games we’ve ever played focus on player vs. player combat. This is understandable because creating 10 maps and relying on players to provide variety is much less time consuming than creating 600 quests. SAGA, however, embraces that players love a rich story and while PvP has its place and is certainly not an afterthought in our design, we felt it was a lot more fun going on quests not just alone but with groups of friends.

In Saga Kingdoms each player will control a capital city that will serve as the seat of their power, however we have greatly expanded on this concept by giving each player a full Island as a starting point. In addition we plan to allow players to take over both resources and outposts on the main continent as their empire expands.

Similar to SAGA, Saga Kingdoms will feature hundreds of quests to test your skill. While some quests do have prerequisites that you must best, you can always go back and do old favorites for loot and XP.

The power of our new engine means we can create much grander quests that can be enjoyed by large groups of friends.These epic battles will be much more difficult but we promise the rewards will be worth it.

Players will be able to choose from one of six factions, each with a unique look and play style.

Primary Race: Elves

The oldest of the races, the elves have long ago learned to live in harmony with Gaia – the spirit of the world itself. Through their allegiance and honor of Her, they have learned to master Her powers, and now control the most destructive forces of Nature. As warriors, they possess terrific skill, and have made strange allies in some of the oldest creatures on Gaia, including treants and elementals.

Primary Race: Orcs and Ogres

The orcs and ogres live for war. They have long pursued it, and have fashioned their living around it. They have traded refinement for mass, and like a blunt instrument, will bludgeon the life out of their enemies. Their spells and abilities are targeted inward, purposed with instilling their warriors with greater power in combat. Individually, their warriors are skillful, en masse: terrifying.

Primary Race: Giants and Humans

Noble, powerful and indomitable – the forces of Light are truly magnificent to behold. Their ancient civilization has reached a glorious age of wisdom and refinement, and their armies have long ago mastered the art of war. They are a balanced and formidable force, able to draw on heavily armored soldiers and powerful magic alike to crush their enemies into submission.

Primary Race: Dwarves

Dwarves are particularly skilled in the arts of mechanical engineering. Hidden deep in their mountain hideaways, they have created terrible machines of war and destruction. In all their tinkering though, they have lost the art of magic and must rely on their own ingenuity and cunning.

Primary Race: Dark Elves

The dark elves are the masters of magic. They have studied many dark arts and have mastered the secrets of daemonology, allowing them to conjure up horrible beasts. By tapping into the powers of the Underworld, they have possession of mighty spells, with which they terrorize their enemies.

Primary Race: Undead

When the god of the Undead was all but defeated he called upon his powers to bring to power the newest of the factions to gain a foothold on Gaia. Adept casters, the undead use their powers of decay to manipulate the course of battle and weaken their foes while gargantuan undead abominations rush forth to devour their prey.

We love variety in most RTS games. Trying to find the perfect balance of troops is an integral part of the strategy. As difficult as it was to balance 6 factions, that task was nothing compared to trying to create over 100 distinct troop types. Saga Kingdoms will bring back many of the old favorites and will commit to creating many more in upcoming free content expansions.
Saga Kingdoms is a Free-To-Play Collectible game

Collecting troops was one of the best received and unique features of SAGA. Booster packs which can now be purchased for gold farmed in game will provide a random assortment of troops. Nothing beats the excitement of ripping open a new pack or the exhilaration of finding a dragon as your rare card.

Every aspect of your empire can grow in power. This means that every play session will reward you with some type of progress.

  • Buildings will be constructed, which will provide additional benefits.
  • Research will reward you with new abilities and benefits.
  • All troops will gain experience during combat, making them more powerful.
  • Magic items will be found during quests and crafted in your city.
  • Every quest completed and booster purchased gives the possibility of new and exciting troops to enhance your army.
  • Even logging in for just a few seconds and collecting resources brings you closer to purchasing that next building upgrade or booster pack.

Each unit in your army will be led by a hero as detailed as any character in an MMO. Heroes can gain levels, learn spells and possess a range of abilities and bonuses that they confer to the unit they lead.

We’re also expanding the number of available heroes slightly from the dozen available in SAGA to many hundreds. (OK maybe more than slightly)

Not only will be we able to create items with a larger variety of abilities, but Saga Kingdoms will feature many thousands more magic items since Heroes can equip armor in multiple slots in addition to weapons and trinkets, rather than the limited 2 slots in SAGA.

Since Units in Saga Kingdoms are built around heroes not troop types, you will have much more freedom when designing your units. Each troop type will possess a special ability, allowing you to have much finer control over the type of army you field. For example, if halberdiers grant increased damage to the whole unit and swordsmen grant increased armor, a unit consisting of 15 halberdiers and 5 swordsmen will play very differently than one with 15 swordsmen and 5 halberdiers. Adding a hero who brings its own set of unit enhancements means an unlimited set of strategies.

Using the Unity engine means being able to do battle on a PC, Mac, or even using Linux. While the client will be available for all of these platforms, developing in Unity means that when you’re at work or school and can’t resist checking your empire or doing a quick quest, Saga Kingdoms will also be playable in a browser. In addition, developing in Unity opens the possibility for a mobile version.

We have been working on Saga Kingdoms for over a year. Some of our players have even had a chance to try the Alpha version.

We can field troops, move them around, and cause havoc to our enemies as well as build a city. The funds raised on Kickstarter will help us port the remaining SAGA features, finish our quest design tools and make the necessary changes to magic items and heroes to bring Saga Kingdoms to the next level.

Source: Linux Gaming News

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iControlPad 2 takes iPhone & Android game control open-source

[gigya height=”360″ src=”https://www.kickstarter.com/swf/kickplayer.swf?” flashvars=”allowfullscreen=true&autostart=false&backcolor=000000&controlbar=over&file=http%3A%2F%2Fs3.amazonaws.com%2Fksr%2Fprojects%2F281231%2Fvideo-159127-h264_high.mp4&image=http%3A%2F%2Fs3.amazonaws.com%2Fksr%2Fprojects%2F281231%2Fphoto-full.jpg&screencolor=000000&skin=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.kickstarter.com%2Fswf%2Fkickskin.swf&wmode=opaque” width=”480″ ]

 Product 3 LLC says:

It supports standard gamepad/joystick/keyboard modes. It works without issue in Linux.

Thanks Product 3

A new open-source Bluetooth gaming controller with full QWERTY, from the team that delivered the iControlPad for iPhone and iPod touch, has hit Kickstarter in search of $150,000. iControlPad 2 will run open-source firmware and include dual-analog controls and support not only for Apple’s mobile devices, but Android phones and tablets, Google TV set-top boxes, and other hardware.

iControlPad 2 takes iPhone & Android game control open-source

It’s fair bristling with buttons and sticks, too, keeping even the most frantic gaming fingers occupied. As well as the analog sticks there’s a D-pad and the usual cluster of four buttons, a 5-row keyboard – with the sticks sandwiched in-between rows one and two – start/select, and two shoulder buttons, though the iControlPad 2 team says the layout isn’t quite final and could still be changed base on gamer feedback.

iControlPad 2 takes iPhone & Android game control open-source

Attaching to whatever mobile device you want to use the iControlPad 2 with uses a swivel-holder, that can flip around the back of the phone in case you need to suddenly take a call. Inside there’s a battery good for 12-14 hours of runtime.

It’ll work with your PC, Mac, and Linux too, and the firmware is open-source so that you can hack it about if you don’t have support for a specific device. Pledging is open from today, with a minimum pledge of $69 getting you a unit when it begins shipping; that’s expected to happen in time for the holidays.

Source: Slashgear

”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news”

Steam Box take two: Job listing suggests Valve is developing hardware

Linux and Open Source, a new direction for Valve.

Valve hiring industrial designer

Valve getting into hardware development has been a long running, popular rumor among the gaming population (rivaled only by rumors of Half-Life 3‘s launch date). The so-called “Steam Box” is a rumored console-like system with PC components that would allow you to play all of your Steam games in the living room using a variety of input methods (including a custom controller). Although the company has previously dismissed the notion, increasing evidence suggests otherwise.

The most recent indication that Valve may be diving into hardware development after all is a job listing in which the company stated that it is seeking an industrial designer with at least six years of experience shipping “world-class, high-tech technology products,” working knowledge of design principles, and familiarity with 2D/3D design software (among other qualifiers). This does not, by itself, confirm Valve will start developing the Steam Box, but when combined with other hints over the last couple of years, such a device does not sound out of the question.

In 2009, Valve filed for a pair of patents (US 2011/0105231 A1 and US 2011/0009193 A1 respectively) that covered both a modular game controller with interchangeable inputs, and a method to control a video game using biometric inputs (something Sony is also working on). Since then, the company has also worked on its Big Picture Mode, which is a 10-foot interface designed to make the Steam client easier to use on a TV screen in the living room (by having larger text, and controllable with a remote control). In addition, the company has announced the upcoming Steam client and Source engine port to the Linux operating system. Valve has even been quoted by Penny Arcade as saying “if we have to sell hardware [to innovate] we will.”

Valve's patented module game controller

All of those, and similar, announcements and actions lend a credibility to the Steam Box rumors — and now would be a great time for Valve to jump into the hardware game with its own platform. Microsoft is pushing for more control in the software that is run on its operating system — and wants to control the distribution and sales of said (Metro) apps as well. On the other side of things, the Android-powered Ouya console experienced a massively successful Kickstarter campaign.

Meanwhile Microsoft and Sony are taking their sweet time bringing next-generation consoles to market, leaving a nice opening for someone to come in and market to gamers with a new console. Should that someone be Valve, they could bring PC gamers to the living room while also bringing the best aspects of the PC to console gamers. If Valve wanted to, now would be a great time to do so — and evidence suggests that it is at least considering developing its own hardware platform. The combination of powerful PC hardware, Steam distribution channel, indie developer friendly programs like Greenlight, and a living room friendly interface would be an extremely potent one.

It is impossible to say for sure if Valve is going to bring the long-awaited Steam Box to the gamers that have been clamoring for it, but the future of Valve hardware seems promising.

Read more at Valve or see the requirement below.

Valve industrial deisgner listing

Source: extremetech

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GameStop CEO Digs Ouya

GameStop CEO Digs Ouya

GameStop head honcho J. Paul Raines is interested in the Ouya console. Apparently, the CEO thinks the platform is “cool” and would very much like to include it as part of GameStop’s ever-growing stock of video games consoles and tablet devices.

“We think Ouya’s cool,” Raines said in a statement to Joystiq. “We love the idea of open-source components. Everything we’ve read is great. There will be games developed for that stuff. So you’re going to see more of these open source type products, and we will be right in the middle of all of it.”

While Raines clarified that GameStop has no official announcement to make regarding the Ouya launch, his enthusiasm couldn’t be any more apparent. He went on to say that GameStop stocks all consoles and plans to “be a part of any console launch in the future.”

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Valve, Maker Of Steam And Source Software, Turns To Hardware

Bellevue, Wash.-based Valve, the software developer behind the critically-acclaimed Half-Life series, the Steam network for distributing games and the Source engine, is reportedly interested in building hardware.

Valve, which was founded by two former Microsoft employees in Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington, added a job posting to its site on Tuesday morning for an industrial designer. It may be coincidental that Valve is getting into the hardware game at the same time as Microsoft (see: the Surface), but Valve’s job posting shares the company’s frustration in the severe lack of innovation when it comes to hardware.
“Valve is traditionally a software company,” the company said. “Open platforms like the PC and Mac are important to us, as they enable us and our partners to have a robust and direct relationship with customers. We’re frustrated by the lack of innovation in the computer hardware space though, so we’re jumping in. Even basic input, the keyboard and mouse, haven’t really changed in any meaningful way over the years. There’s a real void in the marketplace, and opportunities to create compelling user experiences are being overlooked.”

Valve explains that the industrial designer position involves working alongside a “world-class group of electrical, mechanical, software engineers and designers who are businely defining new entertainment experiences through both hardware and software.” In addition, the company is looking for someone with a background and expertise in “product design and manufacturing, ergonomics, usability, aesthetics, and surfacing.”

With the exception of a Kickstarter-funded newcomer, the gaming industry has seen little innovation when it comes to hardware. Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft continue to churn out new consoles every three to five years or so, but a handful of new companies are already disrupting the traditional gaming space.

Mobile gaming has taken off, thanks to the prevalence of iOS and Android devices. Cheap and easy PC gaming, which was accomplished via Valve’s own Steam network, allows users to buy and download games instantaneously, and at a fraction of the game’s retail price. And then there’s Ouya.

Console gaming is still a popular medium, but growth of the industry has slowed down considerably. Global software sales were down three percent in 2011, and global hardware sales were down seven percent. Platforms like the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 continue to perform thanks to the volume of game titles available for those systems, but most consoles are not doing so well, and developers aren’t happy.

“The console business as it is today is completely closed to the independent developer,” said Brian Fargo, founder of gaming company inXile. “The more we have something like this open console that can break that, it’s gonna open up a new business sentiment for the independent developers.”

Gamers and developers similarly want an open platform. Open platforms lower the entry level for developers to build and submit their games, which gives gamers a greater number and variety of games to play. More games leads to greater competition, which in turn drives down prices. Lower prices benefit everyone, but especially the consumer.

One would presume that Valve, which has long believed in the value of building a quality product, would look to build a gaming platform that can satisfy developers and gamers alike.

“Do you prefer to define the work that you pursue, rather than simply following a vision that’s been set for you? If you’re seeking an opportunity to steer product definition, functional exploration and design decision-making, consider joining Valve,” the company writes. “We can’t wait to see where you’ll take us.”

Valve has set no timetable for when it would like to build its hardware, but given the company’s history with game releases, it’s possible Valve will take its time with hardware development. The company is famous for delaying many of its games, even though the majority of them go on to become critical successes.

We may not see Valve hardware for at least another year or two, but it will be interesting to see how the company ties together its software network with its proposed hardware.

Valve is accepting applications.

Source: ibtimes

”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news”

World Of Midgard 3D MMORPG for iOS, Android, OUYA, Linux

Linux support expected upon Unity 3D release.

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World of Midgard is a revolutionary project that brings core gaming to mobile devices: iPhones, iPads, and all Android-based devices.

World Of Midgard 3D MMORPG for iOS, Android, OUYA, Linux

Full Cross Platform Play 🙂

World of Midgard is a revolutionary project that brings core gaming to mobile devices, such as iPhones, iPads, and all Android-based devices, including the upcoming OUYA console.

World of Midgard is a multi-platform full 3D MMORPG core game, the kind you used to enjoy on your PCs, now about to be brought to your mobile phone, or your tablet.

This enables you to play it whenever you want and wherever you are- still having a full 3D MMORPG experience.

Revolutionary on mobile devices? Yes!

World of Midgard offers rich, amazing, full 3D fantasy world, together with full support for factions conflict, factions battleground, rated arenas, 10-man raiding system, and more.

It is also the first full 3D mobile MMORPG with character rideable mounts and separate servers dedicated for player vs. environment, and player vs. player.

Don’t forget that all that is on your iPhone, iPad or Android mobile device.

On plot level, World of Midgard focuses on a conflict between the two warring faction, the Alliance and the Fury, the struggle between them, and also their fight against a common enemy, the Swarm.

The game has a deeply immersing lore, which tells the story of the past of World of Midgard’s heroes, the battles they fought, and the tale of the Schism, the Swarm, Survival & Conquest, and the Treaty of the Fallen Oak.

Those who want to find out more about the game lore should check the link that enables the download of the book sample.

Click here to download Lore Book Sample

During your journey through the game’s world you will immerse yourself in a world inspired by Norse mythology.

There are 6 playable character races: Human, Elf, and Dwarf belonging to the Alliance, and Orc, Dark Elf, and Blood Drak belonging to the Fury.

In addition to selecting a race, you can choose from 5 different classes, which represent a unique style of the particular player.

World Of Midgard 3D MMORPG for iOS, Android, OUYA, Linux

The classes are: Confessors, Fighter, Mage, Rogues, and Templar. We plan to add a Ranger class next year, but your help can make it possible much faster.

The game world is already huge, but it will grow even bigger with each content update -meaning  more quests, more zones, more dungeons, more mounts and more kick-ass gear sets.

And, have I mentioned that while the whole leveling game play is fun, and includes hundreds of quests in open world, solo dungeons and 5-man dungeon leveling system, the game really focuses on end of the game experience?

It’s true!Therefore reaching the level cap is just the beginning of the real core game experience, which includes a very unique end-game 5-man dungeons, 10-man raids, battlegrounds, and rated arenas – (all available on your mobile devices.)

Why do we ask for help?

While you can already play the beta version of World of Midgard  for hundreds of hours, there is still a lot to finish before the game can be called ready.

There is a large number of bugs to squash, and a lot of content waiting to be added- such as hundreds of quests, 1 more zone, 10-man raid, battleground, and an arena.

We want to bring this amazing project to its full functionality this holiday season, so you can enjoy the full MMORPG experience on your mobile device during your holiday time.

If we want to be ready in December, we are going to need money to speed up the development.

If we raise more than we plan, we will be also able to add more content, such as more gear sets, dungeons, zones, quests, and models just to mention the few.

For a small independent team as we are, we have been progressing fast, but fans have kept pressing us every day to bring the game faster.

We ask you for help to fund speeding up the progress of development and, eventually, making the experience of the first MMORPG core game on mobile devices even richer and more awesome. 100% of the money raised is going to be invested in the production of the game.

Reaching our goal will help us speed up the production at least for 2 months, so this bold new game will be ready for a final release on Android, Iphone, and IPad for the 2012 holiday season

What do we need the money for?

The most important part is to turn many of the talented collaborators who have worked for us during these past 2 years into full time employees. This will help us work much faster.

If we raise more than we ask for, we would like to add much more content. Same examples are: more quests, more zones, more dungeons, more mounts and more kick-ass gear sets.

By helping us you are contributing to a fantastic project that fulfills the vision of many wonderful people; you are taking a part in this project, and you can actually shape it with your suggestions and ideas.

This is a game made by gamers for gamers – please, help us keep it this way.

We recommend visiting our forum at forum.worldofmidgard.com, where you can check more info and look for updates.

Exclusive Epic ICE DRAGON MOUNT! Only our Kickstarter backers will have that mount for $15 pledge.

World Of Midgard 3D MMORPG for iOS, Android, OUYA, Linux

Exclusive Epic kick-ass ICE DRAGON MASK matching your ICE DRAGON. Only our Kickstarter backers will have both mount and mask for $25 pledge.

World Of Midgard 3D MMORPG for iOS, Android, OUYA, Linux

Source: Kickstarter

”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news”

Last chance to purchase 9 Games for Linux for the price you want

Humble Bundle for Android 3

As we have previously announced, the sale of Humble Bundle for Android is running for almost 2 weeks now. Recently there have been added another 4 highlights to the first 5 games in the bundle:

World of Goo

Osmos

Anomally

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ml5_9wRiXIg

Edge

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OOdInlAMD4

As it was the case in the Humble Indie Bundle V, all of the games in the bundle can be simply downloaded or even redeemed in the Ubuntu Software Center. So hurry up – Humble Bundle 3 for Android is on sale for just one more day.

Source: SteamforLinux

”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news”

Most Popular Mobile Game Engine Heads to Windows 8 Phones

Unity’s game creation software, used by 53% of mobile developers, will make the jump to Windows 8.
image

 The new Windows 8 operating system will launch on October 26th, and some are already unhappy about it. Prominent game industry figures like Markus “Notch” Persson are concerned that the platform is too restrictive for indie developers, while Valve is bringing Steam to Linux in case everything goes downhill. But there are some out there who have good feelings about Windows 8, such as Unity Technologies CEO David Helgason, who announced recently that Unity’s indie-friendly game engine will fully support Windows 8 on both PC and mobile platforms.

“Our mission at Unity has always been to provide solutions for developers to effortlessly bring their work to as many different platforms as possible,” Helgason said. “The Unity community has been asking for access to Windows Phones and have been eagerly anticipating the release of Windows 8. We’re happy to announce that we will support both.”

The announcement may come as a surprise when one considers that Unity wasn’t previously available on Windows phones. While Unity is used by a stunning 53% of mobile developers, Windows 7 phones were too closed to for the game engine to function properly. As the engine becomes an increasingly popular tool for indie developers, making the engine available on more platforms seems to have become a priority for Helgason.

With a little luck, this news might imply that Microsoft doesn’t want Windows 8 to be the operating system that drives away PC developers, independent or otherwise. We’ll have to wait at least another two months to find out for sure, but in the meantime we should expect indie gaming to continue its expansion into mobile environments.

Source: TheEscapist

 ”linux-game-gaming-gamer-news”

David Crane's Jungle Adventure Coming to Linux and Ouya on Kickstarter

The creator of Pitfall to develop the next great adventure game!

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Update 1: We’re happy to officially announce that we’ll be using Unity3D to develop Jungle Adventure and due to popular demand, we’ve expanded platform support to PC, Mac, Linux and OUYA. David will also be doing an “Ask me Anything” (AMA) on Reddit this coming Tuesday at 1pm PST/4pm EST. Get more detail from our project update.

Welcome to the Jungle!

Game industry legend David Crane is turning to Kickstarter and you, the gaming audience, to create his next great game. The roots of a jungle adventure don’t run any deeper than they do with David and by partnering with you, he and his team can take the genre he created to the next level!

David Who?!

For the last 30 years, David Crane—a true game industry pioneer—has been quietly and, not so quietly, designing and programming a steady stream of hit games on just about every existing platform. Here are just a few highlights:

  • Creator of Pitfall!™, the very first platform adventure and one of the longest running #1 games in history, holding the top spot for 64 consecutive weeks
  • Co-founder of Activision®, the largest video game company in the world and the company that started it all as the first third-party publisher of video game cartridges
  • One of the most acclaimed game designers in history, honored with a myriad of awards, including Game Designer of the Year, Parents’ Choice® award and as the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences first ever Pioneer Award recipient
  • Most Recently, fans voted two of his games into the Art of Video Games exhibit currently on display at the Smithsonian in Washington, DC.

It’s a Jungle Out There

In 1982, David pushed the technological boundaries of a primitive system, infused it with a sense of the epic and managed to create something the world had never seen: the first platform adventure!

The evolution that has taken place since then in technology, as well as player sophistication, has been epic as well. If all this was brought to bear now, its boundaries pushed as David pushed the boundaries 30 years ago, what would the invention of the jungle adventure look like today? How would we explore this world? What world would it be? And who would we meet there?

Setting Out for the Journey

Our stalwart explorer enters the scene, a traditional side-scrolling view. It’s immediately familiar and accessible. But it will only take a few steps into the Jungle to see we’re in unexplored territory. The environment is a lush, vibrant 3D space, not simply a backdrop. The camera moves with us and helps us see what we need to see, from whatever angle necessary, to keep the experience smooth and action-packed, varied in perspective but always simple and true to its platform game roots.

In the Jungle, the Quiet Jungle…

The Jungle itself surrounds us, envelops us. It is alive and breathing, a character in its own right. It teems with creatures both benevolent and quite dangerous, familiar and fantastic. The Jungle and its denizens are reimagined to BE the adventure. Its significance will transcend that of a simple—if immersive—environment and approach fairy tale archetype: the Jungle as symbolism and mythology.

David Crane's Jungle Adventure on Kickstarter

Seeing the Sights

To bring the Jungle to life as we intend, we’re setting the bar high from the start with the execution of the art in rich, full 3D. We’re aiming for a vivid, stylized realism that reinforces the feeling of an epic adventure, deep mystery and allows us a nuanced approach to embedding story elements while keeping the gameplay clean, clear and easy to pick up. The player should be able to smell the flowers—or feel the heat of a dangerous predator’s breath the moment before it strikes. We’ll soon have an exciting announcement regarding this aspect of the project, so stay tuned!

Sound Decisions

The game will have top-notch sound design, providing as much spacial depth as the visuals themselves. Techniques that allow us to create environments and tension through sound effects and music will be employed, supporting the storytelling and sometimes integral to the plot itself.

As for the music itself, it will be dynamic, reactive to gameplay and as emotionally stirring as any movie soundtrack.

A Tale of Mystery & Suspense

The team is currently collaborating on a story to be written by a top entertainment writer. It will have the epic scope that a game of this nature deserves, and is also being developed in conjunction with the game design so it is a natural extension of it, not a roadblock or extraneous element. The player will be as involved in the story and its characters as one would a favorite TV series or movie.

While the details of the story are currently top secret, its structure is a daisy chain of mysteries that player must act to solve—only to propel the player further into the next mystery. It will borrow from real-world mythologies, but take the player to surprising locations. And we will redefine the concept of the Jungle Adventure by redefining the Jungle itself.

The Game’s Afoot

Riffing off of the classic platform adventure gameplay and stirring in a great portion of innovation, we are currently creating a “toy box” full of game mechanics we want YOU to help us play with. This why we’re here and not pitching the game to MegaPublisher X. Depending on the ultimate scope of the game based on our success here, as well as the platform, we can make a fundamentally rich and engaging experience deeper, richer and more immersive.

Tell us of the game mechanics that excite you most, of the ones you want to see taken to a new level. Join the Jungle Party and help us craft the perfect game. Be the next Pioneer.

The best part? The adventure starts immediately. We’ve partnered with GameTrailers to bring you along for the journey – documenting the game development process in a series of behind-the-scenes video updates. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll quietly wonder to yourself how game developers can drink so much soda. Most of all you’ll experience what we experience every step of the way – from funding and concept development to launch of the final game.

Kickstarter: A Journey of Self-Discovery

The world of video games has evolved in ways beyond just the technology. The number of viable game platforms has proliferated. The business has evolved considerably. The time is right for a project like this and Kickstarter is the best way of bringing it to life. With all due respect to the traditional way of getting games to market, new devices and the pure digital world have created opportunity for the true artists in the game space, not only to create what they want, but also to wholly own it and fully reap the rewards in success.

Kickstarter not only allows David and the team to return to the core values and approach to games he pioneered 30 years ago, it allows you, the gamer, to go on the ride with us. Traditional game publishing and development tends to get out of hand quickly in terms of cost and bureaucracy. The task of the game itself is either secondary to its marketing or a slave to it. We, on the other hand, can keep the core team lean, focus on the essentials of making a great game and get realtime feedback from players.

It’s a win-win situation for the people who matter most in the situation—the developers and you, the audience.

Be Our Hero! Jungle Adventure on Kickstarter
Be Our Hero!

Treasure Trove

We want as many people to come along for the ride as possible, so even at the minimum contribution tier of $15 you’ll get a full version of the final game, and the ability to impact its direction via the exclusive backer-only developer area.

If you want to step it up, we have created special premium rewards to bring you even closer to the game and its development – from a full HD download of the behind-the-scenes updates, to signed and numbered collectible posters and badges to a digital book full of concept art and stories from the team.

If you really want to take it to the next level, though, you can become a part of the game’s universe and lore. Have your identity on a collectible treasure or be forever immortalized in the Hall of Kings level, where much is revealed as our hero comes closer to the climax of his adventure.

The Mysterious Hall of Kings

The Expedition Party

We’ve begun to assemble top-notch creative talent from every corner of the gaming, film and online/mobile industries. Bringing a wealth of creative and product experience from Atari™, Activision®, Nickelodeon™, AddictingGames, Disney and many more, this team has left no digital stone unturned, delivering hit games across every platform – from Atari to Xbox to PC to Web and iPhone.

Co-founding Jungle Venture with David are John vanSuchtelen and Bill Wentworth. John is a digital media veteran and the former head of AddictingGames and Shockwave. While there, he led the release of the AddictingGames mobile app which catapulted to the top of the iPhone app charts and remained the #1 most downloaded app for 2 weeks. He also makes a mean mushroom ravioli.

Bill is an award-winning graphic designer and artist with over 25 years of game development experience managing both design and production. He and David have collaborated on many successful games across several platforms, including the creation of Candystand.com™, one of the earliest online gaming sites.

Also  joining the team is David Bergantino, a games industry veteran and writer with a diverse background in traditional and interactive entertainment. He is the author of 11 published novels and has written stories and scripts for numerous videogames, websites and even an amusement park ride. His experience includes hyphenated stints as producer, game designer and/or executive at industry-leading companies such as THQ, The WB Network, Jim Henson Interactive and Disney Interactive, among others.

Announcement 2: Linux

Unity has announced that they will support Linux in the upcoming version 4.0 of their development platform, and that means we will also support it for Jungle Adventure as soon as that capability exists. Here’s what Unity says about compatibility: “Unity Games will run out of the box on most modern Linux systems, but we are only providing *official* support for 64-bit or 32-bit Ubuntu Linux with vendor-made graphics drivers.“

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OUYA: A New, Fully Open-Source Game Console

OUYA has been all the buzz lately – a Kickstarter project that offers a new kind of video game console running on Android 4.0, with an integrated game store and custom TV UI. Funding for this open source platform began on July 10. Kickstarter set a $950,000 funding goal and the campaign had already received eight times this amount before the funding period was over.

What Makes OUYA Unique?

OUYA is different from the game consoles on the market because it welcomes users to root the device – and promises they can do so without voiding the warranty. Everything opens with standard screws and hardware hackers can create their own peripherals and connect via USB or Bluetooth LE 4.0. The console will be powered by Android 4.0, and an SDK will be available to ease the creation of new games and apps. For the first time, players will have full power over the machine – not just the OS.

Other Features OUYA Offers

  • Tegra3 quad-core processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB of internal flash storage
  • HDMI connection to the TV, with support for up to 1080p HD
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth LE 4.0
  • USB 2.0 (one)
  • Wireless controller with standard controls (two analog sticks, d-pad, eight action buttons, a system button), a touchpad
  • Android 4.0
  • ETHERNET! (Announced by Muffi 7/18)

The 2.4 Ghz RF wireless controller offers standard game controls (two analog sticks, d-pad, eight action buttons and a system button), but OUYA takes open-source to a new level and allows gamers to expand their controller options with the addition of a USB 2.0 port. Players with the drive and know-how can root the system and repurpose their favorite controllers from other consoles.

What Are The Drawbacks?

While an open-source gaming platform provides players with an array of benefits in customization, do those benefits outweigh the potential drawbacks?

Security
Being able to root the device is an awesome feature, but at what expense? Users may see a lot of malware. OUYA CEO Julie Uhrman recently stated that OUYA will be as secure as any other Android device. According to F-Secure, an antivirus firm, 75 percent of all phone-based malware targets Android devices. The inherent security of the console just doesn’t seem very tight. With the recent hack of Sony’s PlayStation Network, 77 million users had their usernames, passwords, credit card details, security answers, purchase history and addresses stolen. How will OUYA offer tighter security to users?

Availability Of Games
With OUYA being a new game console, there are no games for it available on the market as of yet. There have been quite a few titles confirmed for launch, but only time will tell how many game makers will release their games for this console.

What Will Happen?

OUYA offers a level of flexibility that will be very attractive to many gamers, but also has a couple potential drawbacks. Will OUYA become the next big thing in gaming? Only time will tell…

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Open source Doom 3 gets ported to Android

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Doom 3 is a science fiction horror video game made by id Software, that was released in 2004 for Windows. It’s been id Software’s most successful game so far, selling over 3.5 million copies. Later it was adapted to the Linux platform, then Mac OS X, and after that, to the Xbox and Xbox360 consoles.

After this whole success, id Software decided to open source Doom 3 last year, so now anyone can try and port it to any platform they want. That’s how we’re now able to see developers trying to port Doom 3 to Android. The ported game is still in pre-alpha stage, so don’t expect it to work very well. Plus, for a 2004 game I think you need a more recent GPU and CPU than the ones in the Desire HD (Qualcomm S2/Adreno 205), if you want it to work smoothly.

In the video demo, the game takes a whole two minutes to load, and there aren’t any other characters inside the game for this specific demo, only the player in an empty room. Will it work much better on newer hardware and once it’s in a finished state? It’s certainly possible. The game is eight years old, but mobile devices already handle the graphics of seven year old PC games or even more recent ones. Plus, the new chips coming out should beat current-gen consoles in performance, so the future looks promising for a game like Doom 3 on mobile devices.

Source: androidauthority.com

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The Uphill Climb of Linux Gaming

For years, there has been one constant for users making the switch to Linux: gaming was going to be a thing of the past.

Not that people haven’t tried, of course. Software like WINE (with its gaming spin-offs like Cedega and PlayOnLinux) have made it possible to run Windows games on Linux with mixed results. There have also been the occasional forays into official Linux support in a handful of titles, but outside of the Humble Indie Bundle, Linux games sales have never been able to touch even Mac OS, let alone Windows.

Linux users who wanted to do any serious gaming were left with the unpleasant prospect of dedicating a partition on their machine to Windows for the express purpose of gaming.

But if recent news is any indication, we may finally see that changing.

Ouya ready to revitalise open-source gaming after $8.5m fundraising haul

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In its short life Ouya has developed partnerships with entertainment platforms such as Vevo, iHeartRadio, TuneIn and XBMC. Photograph: Ouya.tv

Gaming start-up Ouya hopes to stage a revolution in open-source game development for play on TV. It just scored an impressive coup in open-source fundraising.

When its monthlong campaign on Kickstarter wrapped up at midnight last night, Ouya had raised a smart $8,596,475 from more than 63,000 backers. The sum was nine times the company’s original fundraising goal of $950,000. Investors who pledged $95 or more get a free console, projected to ship in March.

“We are truly excited and blown away by the support: it’s amazing how well an open, affordable, accessible games console has resonated with gamers and developers,” Ouya chief executive Julie Uhrman told the Guardian’s Stuart Dredgeearlier this week. “People are really excited about somebody wanting to buck the trend.”

Ouya is building a gaming console on the Android platform that will retail for $99 – half as much as the least expensive Xbox. It would be the first TV console built to run games created by an indefinitely large pool of developers, potentially cracking open a market in which retailers currently get $59.99 for the new Call of Duty.

Games in Ouya’s online store would be free to download. Developers would make money through paid upgrades, in-app purchases for virtual items and subscriptions.

Because the Ouya is designed for ease of software swapping, piracy is a concern. One of Ouya’s biggest challenges is to build a device that is as easy to use as gamers expect without turning off developers as too risky.

“Piracy is one of the reasons we chose the free-to-play model,” Uhrman said. “You don’t see piracy on Facebook games, or on free-to-play games [on mobile].”

Ouya’s potential area of conquest isn’t limited to gaming. The company has been careful to position itself as a games console rather than a more general entertainment set-top box, yet its use of Android opens the way for a variety of non-games services to be made available through the device.

In its short life Ouya has developed partnerships with entertainment platforms such as Vevo, iHeartRadio, TuneIn and XBMC. Meanwhile, both Sony and Microsoft have struck a series of deals to make TV shows, films, music and other kinds of apps available on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Ouya has proven its audience will pay. Now it has only to deliver.

Source: Guardian

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