Jumpman Forever Updates! :-)
Someone posted a message asking for an update, and I realized they were right: I had been pretty quite on here!
So, what's going on with Jumpman Forever? Well, I now live in Tahiti, living off the proceeds from the Kickstarter, drinking these strange little drinks that come with umbrellas.
Naw, not really - actually, I've been working my butt off on Jumpman Forever, still here in Wichita, Kansas in my office.
One of the big holdups was getting the engine we use to handle the Ouya's controllers properly. But, we managed to get that working properly :-) One of the concerns with the Ouya was if the game would end up slow or laggy, and require optimization to get it to where we wanted it to be. An Ouya is really an Android device, without a huge amount of horsepower (compared to the Mac I have setting beside it that development is done on). After tweaking out the controls, I was surprised that it required zero adjustment for the amount of horsepower for the Ouya on a 1080 screen. Awesome :-)
All but one of Jumpman's levels are ready (15 levels), and we're currently working on Red's levels. Her levels are considerably more complex, since her goal is escape rather than just defusing the bombs. Plus, her double-jump ability makes for more open areas and is great for larger levels, but definitely takes more tweaking to get them just right.
And, since it was asked during the Kickstarter demo - yes, there are levels where bits and pieces of the level disappear or appear in response to the players actions. Jupiter Station level 3 is now the first time the player encounters it with "Deconstruction" - by the end of the level, there's not much left ;-)
Four of five game options are up and going - Advanced, which was locked out in the Kickstarter preview version, is active. Speed Run isn't active yet - we need to adjust a couple of things before we make that happen. I'm looking forward to that mode though, since it's going to end up pretty insane.
We also have almost the full team on board now - while almost all of the core of Jumpman Forever was written by me initially, this is a two-year release cycle. After the initial release with 30 levels, we'll still be doing releases roughly every 4 months that add new levels. For that, we have to have a team :-)
- Stephen Lemlek - The angry nerd behind Unleash The Fanboy, and part of the PR efforts behind the Kickstarter campaign
- Jeffery Wilson - An old friend of mine, and editor of both Fear & Trembling Magazine and Residential Aliens Magazine
- Mark Arganbright - AKA Dr. Professor. Gel. E. Bean, part of the Beard & Bean comedy duo.
- And, of course, myself.
Having a larger team to spread a lot of the work across means that over the next two years, we'll have plenty of time to juggle the various level design, artwork, and various other Jumpman Forever related tasks that happen during that two years worth of continued development (particularly since there's another two game projects coming up after Jumpman Forever)
We don't have new music yet. That's been one thing that makes me grimace a bit - I can never seem to find "what I want." We may release the Ouya beta sans music.
The team is going to have a couple of upcoming game releases outside of Jumpman Forever here shortly. The first one is Candy-Apple Snake Saga, a sort of trademark protest game (long story). Mark has sent over one of his games that is being used for publicity for Beard and Bean - he's done the artwork and programming on it, but ran into a couple of problems as he's gotten close to release. He'll also be re-using one of the existing game engines I have laying around for a second publicity game - mostly it's just new levels and graphics, though I'll probably tweak a little of the programming for him.
One big thing missing: JumpmanForever.com still goes to the Kickstarter page, instead of it's new home. I really want to get that done, so I can set up mailing lists for those who want to see weekly updates on the game, Work In Progress pictures, and more! For now, you can take a look at some of the updates that goes into my personal blog at MidnightRyder.org - you're welcome to check it out! (And, you can see part of this week's projects: quitting smoking. Oh, fun. :-)
Davis Ray Sickmon, Jr