Master of The Free World Productions | Jumpcut Entertainment Network

Building thousands of tiny interactions into Hidden Folks

“We were overwhelmed by this desire for everything to be interactive. It took us maybe a whole year to understand how we could shape the game in a way that that no longer was a problem.” …

Gamasutra News

At GDC 2017, get engineering insights from folks who used animation to bring a toy robot to life

At GDC 2017 Anki engineers will explain how, in animating the real-life robot Cozmo, Anki used real-world physics so there was no “cheating” — and they had to adjust their process accordingly. …

Gamasutra News

The practical benefits of making games for older folks

In a new feature on how the game industry is overlooking its older members, game designer and Indiecade cofounder Celia Pearce tells Polygon “this isn’t a utopian dream; it’s a business opportunity.” …

Gamasutra News

Fig Will Let Average Folks Invest In Game Campaigns Starting In December

Thanks to approved changes in Securities and Exchange Commission regulations, you’ll soon be able to invest in crowdfunding projects on platforms that support the initiative. Fig, founded by Inxile’s Brian Fargo, Double Fine’s Tim Schafer, and Obsidian’s Feargus Urquhart plans to set aside $ 1 million in unaccredited investment for its next campaign.

The developer and project for the campaign launching in December haven’t yet been announced, but you can start setting aside $ 1,000 to $ 10,000 if you’ve ever dreamt of earning a return on a small business investment. Up until now, only accredited investors ($ 1 million net worth and $ 200,000 annual income for the past two years) were allowed to participate in such efforts.

Thanks to Regulation A+ of the JOBS Act, those who don’t meet accreditation requirements can fund up to 10 percent of the greater of their annual income or net worth. The minimum amount of investment on Fig will vary by campaign, with the next project setting the lowest buy-in at $ 1,000. Because Fig hasn’t yet been approved by the SEC it will take non-binding reservations pending review. 

Fig has currently offered campaigns for two games. The first, Mobius Digital’s Outer Wilds raised $ 75,000 in investment and $ 51,000 in traditional crowdfunding backing against a goal of $ 125,000. The second game, 5th Cell’s Anchors in the Wild, fell flat. That title only raised 21.4 percent of its $ 500,000 funding goal, with only $ 5,000 coming from traditional backers.


Our Take
I urge in the strongest sense that before you decide to invest in anything, whether on Fig or via other Regulation A+ efforts, that you speak to a financial advisor. Know what you’re getting into. Know the risks. Don’t expect a return, and if you do get one, it won’t happen quickly. – The Feed

Settle Down, Folks. You’ll Be Playing GTA Online Soon

Last month, the long-awaited Grand Theft Auto V released to critical acclaim and unprecedented commercial success. Fans are nearly unanimous in their love of Rockstar’s massive adventure, and they’ve been pouring dozens of hours into it for the last couple of weeks.

That said, there has been plenty of anger throughout the comments sections and message boards of the gaming world thanks to server problems that have led to a rocky launch for Grand Theft Auto Online. Set to begin on October 1, these first couple of days have been marred by connection issues that Rockstar warned about even before the game’s launch.

I understand being frustrated when technical issues get in the way of enjoying something right when you want to. I’ve spent hours trying to troubleshoot DNS errors on my PlayStation 3. I’ve dealt with freezes and signal drops while watching wrestling pay-per-views that I was greatly looking forward to. I’ve lost hours of progress thanks to hard freezes during co-op sessions of numerous games. Like several million of you, I spent $ 60 on Grand Theft Auto V, and the GTA Online experience is one of the many things I was excited about. I experienced some slight disappointment after work yesterday when I wasn’t able to hop online and cause some trouble, but there’s a big difference between being disappointed and hopping onto comments sections in an inconsolable rage.

When I started writing this article, I was planning on linking to a variety of these comments that I’ve seen on YouTube, Rockstar’s support site, and Then I remembered that you’re all on the Internet, and you’ve seen it all before. The tone, language, and insane anger that’s exploded thanks to this issue are nothing new to anyone who’s spent any time on a gaming site.

Being angry about a game not working on day one should be taken on a case-by-case basis. In the case of SimCity’s disastrous launch, gamers had a reason to be upset. They spent money on a game, and they couldn’t play any part of it. If you go to play a game that you just bought and you can’t do anything at all, then you’ve got a reason to be upset and demand your money back.

With Grand Theft Auto Online, I can’t help but view it as a tiny hiccup considering what’s readily available to play. It’s a franchise that has thrived in the past thanks to its robust single-player experience, and that experience is bigger than ever and working great right out of the box (mostly). I’ve had a blast for almost thirty hours in Los Santos, and the in-game checklist tells me I’m only at 50% completion. I know I’ll be spending dozens more hours swapping between Michael, Franklin, and Trevor, so my current inability to begin adding to my online character’s bankroll doesn’t feel like a pressing issue.

Rest assured, Rockstar is hard at work on resolving this issue. Their official site has been transparent and has done a great job of preparing for issues and explaining them when they happen, and they’re inviting feedback in an effort to make the GTA Online experience better as a whole.

So for now…chill out. That $ 60 you spent isn’t for nothing, as I’m willing to bet you haven’t done everything there is to do in Los Santos yet. In a gaming generation that frequently features six-hour campaigns that retail at full price, I don’t see any reason to vilify Rockstar for a bumpy launch. They’re doing what they can, and few games in history (if any) have ever had to deal with such a massive influx of players at the same time.

Take a breath. Play some more single player. Go eat a sandwich, go on a run, watch a movie, take a nap, or play any one of the other amazing games that have come out this year. Come back to GTA Online once the inevitable reports of smooth sailing come in, and enjoy pulling off heists with your crew then. Everything’s gonna be alright. – The Feed

EA Maxis folks leave to open new indie sim studio, Jellygrade

Jellygrade is a new studio of exSims peeps

Jellygrade, a new indie studio dedicated to creating simulation experiences on mobile platforms, has been formally announced today. Jellygrade is made up of former EA Maxis creative director Ocean Quigley, former engineering lead Andrew Willmott and former lead gameplay engineer Dan Moskowitz.

In a tweet, Quigley says this first mystery project is about the dawn of life. “We’re making a simulation about the dawn of life on earth; about lava, water, rock and the emergence of the first primordial creatures.” Nothing else about this first project is known, though Jellygrade promises it’ll have something to show soon.

JoystiqEA Maxis folks leave to open new indie sim studio, Jellygrade originally appeared on Joystiq on Tue, 16 Jul 2013 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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‘Vote: The Game’ is a political fighter from the Infinity Blade folks

'Vote The Game' is a political fighter from the Infinity Blade folks

Yup, that’s about as exciting as it sounds – a United States politics-based fighter from Infinity Blade developer Chair Entertainment. Call it “Ignominy Blade,” if you will (we will). Or call it “Vote: The Game,” which is its actual name.

Epic and Chair announced the iOS entry this afternoon as a “cartoon-style political slugfest.” The game was produced alongside the Rock the Vote folks in an effort to appeal to unregistered gamer voters – you can register to vote from right within the game.

Cartoon versions of both President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney appear in the title, where they battle Infinity Blade-style to win debates. It may trick a few potential voters into thinking that’s how the debate process works, but that doesn’t sound like too bad of a byproduct to us.

The game isn’t available in the US iTunes App Store just yet, but it’s already popping up in other territories. It should arrive on the North American store shortly.

Gallery: Vote!!! The Game

Continue reading ‘Vote: The Game’ is a political fighter from the Infinity Blade folks

Joystiq‘Vote: The Game’ is a political fighter from the Infinity Blade folks originally appeared on Joystiq on Wed, 22 Aug 2012 13:50:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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So, the folks at EA certainly like Xbox’s SmartGlass

The second screen possibilities that Microsoft’s SmartGlass will provide once it launches later this year have us plenty interested. The question is, who will make the extra content? Where’s the developer support?

Microsoft has already confirmed that it will be using the tech in all of its own first-party games, and it looks as if the first third-party has just publicly thrown their weight behind it now as well. And they’re a biggie.

Publishing giant EA is the one in question, calling SmartGlass “very important.”

Says EA Labels boss Frank Gibeau: “I think it’s a killer initiative. I really like it a lot. It ties into what we’re trying to do as a company.

”What we’re trying to do as a developer of games is – we’re looking at multi-screen environments as being really key in what’s happening in gaming. You play games on your mobile. You play games on your PC. You play games on your console. So giving people more access points through multiple screens is a great thing.”

EA Sports head Andrew Wilson shares the excitement: “I think it’s very important for a couple of reasons. SmartGlass will bring in a whole new audience to gaming, but with respect to SmartGlass integration with a console experience it is changing the way people interact with consoles.

“If you look at Madden or FIFA this year, they have a series of multi-screen applications that allow you to manage your connected career or manage your FIFA Ultimate team while you’re in front of the screen or while you’re away from the screen. What that’s enabling is people to engage in a world that’s very, very important to them that they’re very passionate about even while they’re away from their 60-inch television.”

SmartGlass will be available sometime this fall. Watch the announcement video Microsoft showed at E3 again below:

That VideoGame Blog

Report: Mass Effect 3 face patch causing crashes for some folks


For those of you excited about dusting off the ol’ ME1 Shepard and giving those Reapers what for, know that there may be one more hurdle between you and Mass Effect 3‘s intergalactic glory. Apparently, the patch that fixed the face import bug has broken things elsewhere – specifically, some players are experiencing crashes when connecting to EA’s servers.

Shepards encountering this issue are encouraged to post about it in this BioWare thread, where development is currently farming user data in order to better understand the problem and find a solution. The good news is that the error appears to be periodic rather than consistent, with some affected players able to connect via persistence and willpower. There are also reports that re-patching can resolve the issue, but for heaven’s sake please be careful when deleting ME3‘s system cache from your Xbox’s harddrive. Save files are precious, fragile things.

JoystiqReport: Mass Effect 3 face patch causing crashes for some folks originally appeared on Joystiq on Thu, 12 Apr 2012 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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