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An adventure game based on Homestuck, by Andrew Hussie.
An adventure game based on Homestuck, by Andrew Hussie.
24,346 backers pledged $2,485,506 to help bring this project to life.

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Changes at What Pumpkin and game news


There are a lot of changes taking place at What Pumpkin. These are mostly good things! But one consequence is an inevitable delay in Hiveswap's release date.

As you may know, What Pumpkin has been primarily concerned with selling merchandise related to Homestuck. Recently, we've partnered with We Love Fine to handle all future merchandising, and have been taking steps to put the company's focus solely on game development. This little restructuring phase means soon we'll be able to put all our resources and attention into games, ensuring that not only will the Hiveswap series be the best games they can be, but that we will be able to pursue other game projects in the future. The transition is keeping us pretty busy as we wrap things up at the warehouse, and make all kinds of other business adjustments.

Meanwhile, as our warehouse winds down, things at the studio are trending very much in the opposite direction. So much so that we'll be moving to a bigger office. What Pumpkin NYC launched last fall with just a handful of people in a tiny office on Wall Street, but since then we’ve grown so much, we literally can't fit everyone in the room anymore. So an office upgrade is definitely in order. We'll be moving somewhere that not only can sustain our current operation, but accommodate future growth as well.

All this is putting a dent in our development schedule, but the truth is, having more time to spend on fine-tuning the game isn't going to hurt at all. Act 1 of Hiveswap is turning out to be quite a deep adventure game experience with a lot to explore, and thus, there’s a lot to perfect before release. It really feels to the whole team like we're making something special here, so we don't want to rush it just for the sake of nailing a particular release date. So we'll be taking the little adjustment period this month to revise the schedule and come up with a new date to reflect the amount of polishing and testing we think the game could still use.

We'll announce a new release date once we're sure the estimate will be final, and you will be the first to know once we do. Thank you so much for understanding! We’re so grateful to our fans and supporters for giving us the time and space we need to make a really great game. In the meantime, keep an eye out for more updates. We'll still have a lot of cool things to show you between now and the launch, like concept art, screenshots, behind-the-scenes insight into the development process, and more. Be sure to check out our dev blog, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.

The Hiveswap trailer is live!


Have you noticed that we're posting more updates lately? That's because things are really moving on the game right now, and there's a lot of exciting progress to report. Tonight we're launching the first official trailer for Hiveswap, which you can view here at What Pumpkin Studios' new YouTube channel. You might want to bookmark that page now since we'll be posting more cool stuff there in the coming months as we get closer to the game's release. 

More fun stuff to check out—a few new interviews with WP's creative director, Jess Haskins, on the making of the game:

And one more thing—this weekend What Pumpkin will have a booth at Mega Con in Orlando, Florida, which will include a sneak peak of the game. If you happen to be heading to that show, stop by and see us at booths #520 and 522. 

Come to Seattle this weekend to see more Hiveswap stuff in person!


Obviously this update is going to be the most exciting for Homestuck fans who happen to be in Seattle this coming weekend for Emerald City Comiccon. But even if you won't be there, this is still great news because it means Hiveswap is getting closer by the minute to its release!

If you're one of the thousands of comics and gaming fans who'll be hitting the Seattle Convention Center this weekend for ECCC, don't miss your chance to visit What Pumpkin at booth #305 to try a preview segment of Hiveswap. Bear in mind this is an early preview of a work in progress. It's one room, with some features disabled, but it's playable, looks very good, and gives a strong sense of what it will be like to play it. It's not the sort of thing we can put online anywhere yet, but we're more than happy to let people visiting the booth try it out on our machine.

We're eager to see what everyone thinks! We hope you can make it.

More Hiveswap Assets and Info


Hey! Here's an asset reel for you, including some model turnarounds, concept art, and music from the game.

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You may have noticed a few trolls in there. That's far from the full cast of them. Those are just a few of the game's NPCs, of which there will be more than 100. That's an awful lot of trolls to come up with unique designs for. We managed though. Here's a quick look at what that process was like. We messed with tons of these 2D concepts, kept tweaking and refining their details like hair, horns, clothes, accessories, until we felt good about 'em. Then our modeler Mike takes over, who is some sort of crazy modeling machine. Still hard for me to believe how well he captures these concepts, while cranking them out so quickly.

Troll Concept 1
Troll Concept 1
Troll Concept 2
Troll Concept 2

 Oh also, maybe you remember these two? They haven't been modeled yet. But they will be!

Troll Concept 3
Troll Concept 3

The original Homestuck trolls corresponded with zodiac signs, of course. You can see these ones are wearing different symbols. We ended up making quite a few new ones to create an "expanded zodiac." Around 250, actually. The majority of which won't appear in the game, but we made a bunch of extra ones I guess in case of an emergency. This can be considered the canonical extended set of troll symbols. I'll let you see them later, in a more meaningful context. If there is really such a thing as a meaningful context for 250 fake zodiac signs. If you watched the video, you may have been curious about the music. Music for the game is being made by James Roach and Toby Fox. Toby has made quite a large number of songs for Homestuck, so perhaps you will recognize his sound. Both he and James are great to work with. It's turning out to be an awesome soundtrack that I believe will be one of the more memorable features of the game. We're also working on a game trailer. We should have that ready to show you soon. What Pumpkin will also be attending a few conventions in the near future, and showing off some Hiveswap teaser stuff wherever it is exhibiting. Keep an eye out for updates on those events. 

And just a reminder, here are all the relevant links to Hiveswap on social media and such —Tumblr, Twitter, and Facebook

Hiveswap is coming!


First, here's a website for the game, including a little press kit of art and screenshots. Feel free to sign up for the newsletter there, too.

Also, a few social media links, if you are interested in tracking updates on the game: Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr (This post covers a lot of the basics.)

The takeaway from this deluge of hyperlinks is clear: the game is imminently ramping up to be a thing in the real world that people can actually buy and play. Pretty exciting stuff! If you glanced at those shots, I must impress on you that as nice as it looks, all that is actually quite a small slice of everything this game embodies. It's all looking fantastic I think. The team's done a great job conjuring this feel I had in mind, somewhat reminiscent of the simple style of the comic, but heavy on atmosphere and other nice rendering qualities that help pull you into the world.

Being privy to all the work being done, I can tell you it's not only looking great, but it bears mentioning how FAST all this work has been materializing. To put this in perspective, recall that last Fall I mentioned we switched tracks and brought all game development in-house, under the What Pumpkin banner. We thought this was the best move for the future of the project, but realistically it also meant nearly a total production reboot. The move involved some risk, requiring an entire dev operation to be assembled from the ground-up almost overnight. Back in October of last year we hadn't even bought, like... computers. There weren't even computers yet, ok? You kind of need those, people kept telling me. But in the few months since then, somehow this crazy game making machine appeared out of thin air, caught fire, and now most of an episode has been drawn, modeled, textured, animated, all that. And the weird thing is, not just how quickly it's coming together, but considering the speed it's like... freakishly good? It shouldn't be this good.

All I can do, aside from mumble to myself like a wizard just played a trick on me, is give credit to the fantastic people on WP's dev team, and James and Jess (senior producer and creative director) who brought all these people together so quickly and are keeping everyone on task. I've spent some time with the crew in NYC, hangin' out, watching them work, making a total nuisance of myself. Just an all around great team of people, very skilled and very passionate about making games. I do think there's something else going on here, that makes this situation kind of special. Maybe unique. While in development, a very good dev team has sort of collided with the other creative side of What Pumpkin, a lot of great artists many of whom came up through the Paradox Space project. We've tapped a bunch of them for concept art and other kinds of creative input. These are phenomenal artists who are also really knowledgeable about Homestuck and really enthusiastic about this world in general, and they've been putting their creative touches into the game too, which I think is giving the content a lot of energy and depth. There are a lot of great elements coming together here.

So that's the news on that front. The front that's basically, "will there be a game soon and will it be good?" and the answers are yes and probably. News about what to expect from the game itself? I guess you can gather some tantalizing stuff from the visuals there. We'll release more tidbits like that as it gets closer. But what other DIRT can I reveal??

Alright, here's one little thing. Remember I said the story is tangentially related to Homestuck canon? It fits into canon events, but has very little direct involvement with what we know as the Sburb saga in the web story. So logically it takes place before 2009. Well, here's exactly when. Joey and her brother there (in that treehouse shot) are both kids from the 90's. That's when it takes place, at least the Earth portion of the story (Alternia didn't have the 90's). So its relation to Homestuck canon is something readers can piece together from clues in the game, as it ties into the backstory of Skaianet's roots, mysteries related to the guardians and their curious involvement with all that stuff. Learning all that isn't "the point" of the game, but it should be some fun stuff for people who've read the story to notice.

Events on Alternia also take place in the past. Exactly when is more nebulous though. Could be decades, could be centuries. Long before the time of Karkat and his friends, but the same basic Alternian culture. Planet populated only by kids, hemospectrum class system in full effect, all that. There's a different ruling Heiress. (I will not spoil who the 1st best at memes is, sorry.)