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Thunderbeam is a retro-futuristic adventure game for the iPad, with an original score and sound design by The Octopus Project.
Thunderbeam is a retro-futuristic adventure game, with an original score by The Octopus Project.
Thunderbeam is a retro-futuristic adventure game, with an original score by The Octopus Project.
508 backers pledged $24,221 to help bring this project to life.

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Grab the Thunderbeam Cadet Generator

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February quickie update


Hello again, Thunderbeam backers. It's been way too long since we have posted an update, but it's been a pretty gray slog of a winter for the project. Work continues though, and here's a peek at what's currently going on with the game. 

 Paul put in a lot of work to get us to our current state, but the game isn't really beta testable until we have what I'd consider a "vertical slice" of the gameplay- something that includes psychic power usage, container objects, item trading with NPC's, death and unconsciousness, and our randomly generated characters actually appearing within the game. Each one of these game aspects is what we'd call an epic task, they each involve new low-level code in the engine, additional UI, and a lot of new scripting hooks so lowly mortals like myself can use each new element in level design. Once we do have those features though, we will be able to seek additional funding if needed, and maybe even approach partners for help with localizing for other languages, testing, and porting the game to other platforms. Not to mention finally getting user testing feedback from those of you who don't mind having the final game spoiled a little by playing early versions. 

Another thing that's happening is that a "Thunderbeam" trademark we applied for back at the beginning of the project needs to show some usage soon or we will lose it. It's not totally vital to have a trademark on your name as a game, but if you have any measure of success there are intellectual property trolls who will come crawling out to sue you for using your own name. So, I'd very much like to hang on to the trademark if possible. The plan is to take a part of the game that's mostly done- the random cadet generator- and add it to the app store as a free download. The idea is that you could generate cadets, save them to iCloud and then recruit them into the game once it's released. Saints Row IV basically did the same thing with their free initiation station, and it was fairly fun to play with. 

I've hinted at it for a long time, but once we finally release the game, there are plans to do a simultaneous release of the Soundtrack by The Octopus Project, coinciding with a show/release party. The Octopus Project have been keeping extremely busy lately, and are about to release their soundtrack to David and Nathan Zellner's new film Kumiko The Treasure Hunter. Both the movie and the soundtrack are excellent and I recommend them both highly. 

 I'm also doing another Hexadecagon-style audio video performance with the band in April in Austin at The Museum of Human Achievement. More info about that will be posted soon at 

Finally, I'd like to give a warm welcome to Eliott Lash, who has been doing some programming on the game over the last few weeks while Paul and James take sabbaticals. Eliott has already kind of revolutionized the way I work on Thunderbeam levels by creating a room-connection mapping tool. James and Paul should be back to work on tasks shortly, but I'm really excited to see what else Eliott can do for the project, since he has a lot of experience working on iOS games, as well as experience with the specific technology stack that we are utilizing on this game. 

 Oh, one last thing! James made another little game a while back called Frankenfoods which has been languishing for a bit while life seems to keep intruding into game development time. Well, the game is finished and we plan on releasing it soon. Stay tuned to this page and the Karakasa Games blog and we'll make sure you are all the first to get it. We'd love your feedback. You can also follow us on Twitter for news & tidbits as we keep punching our tiny path towards glory.


Take care and stay warm, everybody-


Update September 7th

Illustration by Vivian Ng
Illustration by Vivian Ng

Hello again everyone, here's a quick peek at what's new in Thunderbeam.

We've started working on some planet-side landscapes, so there's quite a bit of new artwork. Also, you can see that some of the interactions have matured a bit. You can now see a text description of the implicit verb you are about to use when you touch the screen, so you know exactly what you are about to do before you do it. 

We've also started working on the system of attributes that gives each character their personality and skills. This is a kind of old-school RPG concept that we're trying to present in a new way, but it still needs a lot of additional polish. 

There's quite a bit more being added in this week, and we'll be allowing some playtesting of the basic mechanics soon. Thank you again for your support and patience.

Update, May 5th


Hey gang, It's been a while since there's been an update. Guess what? Here's a big update!

Instead of crossing your eyes over a big chunk of text full of technical details, I am going to blow your mind with this really long video of me poking around on an iPad! 

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 (I've had kind of bad allergies and it was 2 in the morning when I recorded this, btw) 
 It's hard to get across just what a difficult adventure making a game is, especially one this ambitious. We're definitely finding it as we create it. I can say that it's definitely the most difficult project I've been involved in, and also the most rewarding. Hopefully showing the process a little at this still primitive stage won't spoil any of the magic of the finished product.

I still won't make any predictions as to release date yet, but things are definitely speeding up... and as we get closer to the final shape the game will take, it's looking like we are going to try for a wider target than iOS only. I talk a little about that in the video :)

Also, as things take shape there's going to gradually be more public facing information about the game, so you might bookmark some of these places-