Online Matters Transcending the single Player Experience.

Category: Indie


GAMESPY TECHNOLOGY’S INDIE OPEN HOUSE PROGRAM BRINGS IN FOUR GAME DEVELOPERS


Second Wave of Indie Open House Teams Include New Teams Wolfire and Misfit Attic, Returning Teams Cryptic Sea and Interabang Entertainment

Feb 1, 2012 – San Francisco, CA – GameSpy Technology, a division of IGN Entertainment, Inc., has once again opened its doors to teams of independent developers selected for the Indie Open House project, which leverages GameSpy Technology and IGN Entertainment’s resources to provide free office space, technology, peer support, and consultation to help the selected teams design, craft, and execute on their inspired game ideas. The teams will remain in residency for six months working in GameSpy Technology/IGN Entertainment’s San Francisco office and consists of four game development teams: Cryptic Sea, Interabang Entertainment, Misfit Attic and Wolfire.

“Indie game developers may not have multimillion dollar budgets, but they are innovating with creative gameplay ideas and the drive to craft an experience uniquely their own,” said Drew Curby, Senior Director, GameSpy Technology. “GameSpy Technology is proud to give these guys a space and a means to share ideas, collaborate, and create their games.”

In its inaugural residency period, the Indie Open House project helped five independent game developers get their projects off the ground, arranging for professional consultations, media interviews, technical support, free licenses to valuable online gaming technology, on-site demonstrations at industry events, and networking opportunities for the participating Indie Open House teams. The second group of indie teams runs the gamut from established indie developers like Cryptic Sea and Wolfire, to the young and ambitious teams at Interabang and Misfit Attic.

  • Cryptic Sea, aka Alex Austin, hails from Santa Cruz and has been experimenting with entirely new gameplay ideas; reimagining movement and physics in first-person shooters, creating a hockey game played through the eyes of a player, and making a fun physics-based puzzle game that challenges reflexes and coordination. The team is a veteran of the Indie Open House project, as a participating member of the first group of Indie Open House teams.
  • Interabang Studios, from San Diego, crafting Super Comboman, an action adventure title that features tons of combos, destructible environments, and mullets. Building on their work from the first session, Interabang continues to refine their game while exploring mobile platforms, and monetization.
  • Misfits Attic, led by Boston native, Tim Keenan, is creating A Virus Named Tom, a three player cooperative action-puzzler that challenges players to rearrange circuits to spread a virus while dodging anti-virus drones.
  • Wolfire Games, founded in 2003 by David Rosen, is now a five member team, has released the successful indie shareware game Lugaru, a detailed 3D game with brutal, bloody, rabbit combat. The team is now at work on its sequel, Overgrowth. David and the team at Wolfire have also been pioneers in the distribution of indie games, conceiving of the very successful Humble Indie Bundle, a series of indie games sold together in a pack, whose prices are determined by the buyer and whose proceeds go to select charitable organizations: http://www.humblebundle.com/

“One of the valuable benefits of Cryptic Sea’s participation in the Indie Open House program has been the opportunity to share new gameplay ideas and experimental demos with like-minded indie developers to get their feedback,” says Cryptic Sea’s Alex Austin. “Having so many indie guys under one roof gives each project its own little workshop.”

“The shared workspace encourages discussion with members of other indie teams, which helps me see my project from an outside perspective” says David Rosen of Wolfire Games. “Free office space in San Francisco is also hard to come by — I would have said ‘impossible’ before the Indie Open House — and the internet connection here is by far the fastest that I’ve ever seen.”

The Indie Open House teams will benefit from exposure to an energetic, team-focused environment featuring other independent development groups as well experienced technology and games experts willing to exchange ideas on cutting-edge game design and innovation. Helping guide the program will be several internal and external advisors, including company executives, editors and independent developers. The program offers a 6-month rolling term for participating teams. Additional benefits include:

  • 24-hour access to IGN headquarters located in San Francisco’s SOMA district, including conference rooms, phones, internet access, and kitchens
  • Participation in Demo Days and the opportunity to showcase games directly to publishers, retailers, online distributors and the IGN and GameSpy editorial teams
  • Free licensing of GameSpy Technology’s multi-platform Open Services Platform for essential online features like Leaderboards, Matchmaking, Deep User Stats, Consultation with GameSpy Technology’s Professional Services team
  • Demo space at select events, such as GDC 2012 in San Francisco

The Indie Open House program will continue to consider new applicants for the next round of the program. To learn more and to submit an application for the future application, visit www.ign.com/indieopenhouse.

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About IGN Entertainment
IGN Entertainment, a unit of News Corporation, is the leading Internet media and services provider focused on the video game and entertainment enthusiast markets. Collectively, IGN’s properties reached more than 37.8 million unique users worldwide June 2010, according to Internet audience measurement firm comScore Media Metrix. IGN’s network of video game-related properties (IGN.com, GameSpy, FilePlanet, TeamXbox, Direct2Drive and others) is one of the Web’s leading video game information destinations. IGN also owns the leading men’s lifestyle website AskMen.com and provides technology for online game play in video games. IGN is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices across North America, Europe and Australia.

About GameSpy Technology
A division of IGN Entertainment, GameSpy Technology is the leading provider of online services to video game developers. Founded in 1997, GameSpy has provided its connected gaming technology to the best-selling, most innovative games in the industry. Its various services – multiplayer, player metrics & rankings, and data storage – are designed to make games more fun by helping players share their experiences. GameSpy’s technology is accessible on every gaming platform and has been utilized by more than 1,000 titles to date, including landmark games like Rockstar Games’ Red Dead Redemption, Trendy Entertainment’s Dungeon Defenders, and Glu Mobile’s Gun Bros.



InXile’s Choplifter HD Available Now


InXile Entertainment — the Newport Beach, Calif. based studio founded by former Interplay leader Brian Fargo — uses the tagline “Nostalgia just had a baby with Awesome” to describe its high octane remake of the classic helicopter rescue game Choplifter. Having played the game ourselves at PAX and elsewhere, we have to agree. Choplifter HD is available for download as of today on Sony’s PSN, Steam and Xbox Live, and comes with leaderboards powered by GameSpy Technology’s Player Metrics & Rankings services.

The studio gained access to our services via our “GameSpy Open” initiative, which aims to make all of GameSpy Technology’s services more accessible to independent studios by making them more affordable and easier to integrate. A hearty congrats to our friends and partners at InXile on getting the game airborne!

Choplifter HD represents a first of sorts for InXile. The studio originally built on its Interplay founders’ deep AAA development experience, digging into the heritage of classic RPGs to revive classics like The Bard’s Tale (the studio’s first release) and creating new, Unreal-Engine -powered dungeon crawlers like Hunted: The Demon’s Forge. The studio also has a line of more casual, digital only titles, like the modern classic Line Rider. Choplifter HD finds the studio breaking new ground, joining a growing swell of independent studios releasing high quality games at moderate price points exclusively via digital distribution channels like Sony’s PSN.

The bet seems to be paying off — IGN.com has already rated the game a very solid 8/10, noting that its unique, ever-shifting style and challenges makes it, ” … an ace experience for bite-sized sessions and marathons alike.”



Categories: Competition, Data, Indie

GameSpy Technology Expands its Unity Offerings to Android


GameSpy Technology is pleased to announce that our tools and services for Unity are now Android compatible!

Developers creating games for Android devices can now wield the limitless power that our services offer:

Player Metrics & Rankings allows you to construct leaderboards, track player stats, and minimize cheating through report authentication
Data Storage lets you store structured and unstructured data online, allowing players to access content like save games, screenshots, videos, and playable content anywhere that has an internet connection
Multiplayer Matchmaking connects players wherever they want to play, and can even facilitate cross-platform play to let them connect on whatever platform they prefer

You’ll also find these services easy to integrate courtesy of our GameSpy-Unity C# connector and the lightweight test applications we provide for our various tools.

Accessing our Unity Android SDKs is as easy as signing up for a free account today at poweredbygamespy.com and downloading them from your Developer Dashboard.

Once you’ve downloaded the Unity SDK package, be sure to visit our YouTube channel to watch tutorial videos on integrating our various services – especially our quick, three-and-a-half-minute screencast on working with our Unity C# Connector:

We have more support for the Unity engine planned for the near future. Keep your eyes peeled for more news from us soon!



Categories: Featured, Indie, Open, Other, Unity

GameSpy Technology Sake Web Admin Panel Demo Screencast


The Sake Web Admin Panel Demonstration — the next video in our GameSpy Technology Tools Screencast series — is now available to view at our official Youtube channel. Sake, our Cloud-Data Storage Service, is more than a simple database and provides incredibly flexible data storage and retrieval. AAA-title games like Civiliation V (with its ModBuddy feature), Mario Kart Wii (Ghost Races are made possible via Sake), and Red Dead Redemption (which uses Sake to facilitate the game-to-web connectivity for the Rockstar Social Club) use Sake to:

• Store player-specific data like profiles, game saves, and screenshots
• Retrieve User-generated content like custom mods and levels and player icons
• Provide storage and out-of-game retrieval for ATLAS-generated statistics used in leaderboards, Web-based profiles, and mobile apps
• Allow developers to both manually and automatically moderate user-generated content through criteria set up in an easy-to-use Web interface

Sake is a two-part system — the traditional client that integrates directly into your game and the Sake Web Admin Panel, a Web-based administrative tool that lets you manage your Sake schema (the structure of tables and fields that Sake uses to manage information) on the Web without having to deal with the fuss of backend databases. The Sake Web Admin Panel Demonstration will walk you through creating Sake schema, tables, and fields, so that your players can both enrich your game and be enriched by your game’s use of the Sake service.

Watch the Sake Web Admin Panel Demonstration at either the GameSpy Technology Wiki or at our official Youtube channel, then sign up for a free account today at poweredbygamespy.com to get started with the Sake Cloud-Data Storage Service.



Categories: Data, Implementation, Indie, Open, Other, SDKs

Emotional Robots’ Warm Gun Released for iOS with Multiplayer powered by GameSpy Technology


For anyone questioning the ability of small, independent studios to produce high-caliber video game entertainment, the crew at Emotional Robots has an answer: Warm Gun.

Set in a futuristic, dystopian version of the Wild West, this first person shooter for the iPhone and iPad delivers the sort of adrenalin-soaked, frenetic action that most gamers used to expect only from big budget PC and console games. More compelling, a team of six full-time (and 4 part-time) developers built the game over the past three-and-a-half years using the Unreal Development Kit, with multiplayer services obtained freely via GameSpy Technology’s “Open” Initiative (which puts the full suite of our online services – from multiplayer to player metrics & rankings to cloud storage – in the hands of start-up studios at no up-front cost).

You can view a trailer, loaded with gameplay footage, here:

Multiplayer works exactly in Warm Gun as you’d expect from any other shooter: dedicated servers host the game online, and players join by browsing through a server browser to locate the optimal host. Players can choose from any of four characters, each equipped with three weapons, and run ‘n’ gun their way through the game’s tried and true deathmatch game mode. New multiplayer modes, like Capture the Flag, Death Match, or Team Death Match, in addition to Warm Gun “exclusives” like “Showdown,” “Great Escape” and “Mad Cap” can be expected in future versions of the game, whether or iOS or elsewhere.

Warm Gun is available for purchase download now via Apple’s iTunes App Store. And, when you’re ready to follow in Emotional Robots’ footsteps, you can sign up for a free GameSpy Technology developer account and start coding your next online masterpiece right here.



Categories: Indie, iPhone, Matchmaking, Open
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