Game Jam Times and New Flawless Art

The Flawless’ New Art is Taking Shape

For the past few months we’ve been redesigning The Flawless: Art’s Tale from the ground up after feedback from our prototype build. The new art style is still not ready to show you but it is really coming along. With the new art style the main character Art has also needed some redesign and is looking better than ever. To find out more about the bigger projects we’re working on have a gander at this article.

A Game Jam for the Many

We’ve always wanted to take part in a Game Jam but living in Thailand meant that it wasn’t possible. So when we moved back to the UK we kept our ears and eyes open for game jams in our area. We were invited to the Games for the Many Political  Game Jam in Manchester, as we helped Bloodlines Games with their political infinite Runner Maybot Run. We teamed up with Bloodline Games again and a few other people for a weekend to make another politics inspired game. The game we made is called a Strong and Stable Leader. You play as the newly elected UK Prime Minister and have to decide on policies for your country. Your decisions have consequences; will you run the county into the ground whilst you indulge in riches or will you risk the support of your party for the sake of the greater good? You can also collect trophies along the way!

Strong & Stable Leader is a funny little political indie game made in 2 days

We really enjoyed taking part in this game jam. We worked with cool people and saw some interesting ideas given life. It’s surprising how much can be achieved in such a short amount of time especially when you’re working with a bigger team. We had five people on our team and luckily we covered the main indiedev angles; graphics, code, sound, and writing. It was also nice to see the range of people interested in indie games and making games. There were students form Manchester universities, game developers, lecturers, activists, designers, and musicians. We really enjoyed working with different people and we hope to team up with Bloodline Games and Games for the Many again soon.

As you make more right wing decisions you office improves but the world deteriorates

Well I’ve better get back to The Flawless: Art’s Tale, looking forward to showing you the new art style. Until next time… Keep tuned for updates on all our projects. If you enjoyed reading this article and are interested in our game development why not keep up to date with all our indie games by following us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Google+

 

#flawlessthegame #MaybotRun #indiegames #GamesForTheMany

Ste Wilson is a director, game developer, and programmer at Bare Knuckle Development Ltd. When not coding away on BKD games he can be found playing video games on console and PC. He also makes music under the music maker name of ‘Electric Fan Death’ and loves playing guitar, writing tunes, and producing music.

From Flawless to Maybot Run to VR & Beyond

The prototype for The Flawless: Art’s Tale has been complete for a while now. We’ve been busy grafting away on other projects. A hilarious political infinite runner, a cyberpunk 2d shooter, and a dystopian VR game. Here’s how things are progressing.

We finished our prototype build of our sidescrolling RPG adventure indie game, The Flawless: Art’s Tale a while ago. We recently tested it with a small group of friends and developers and the reaction was great. The prototype section of the game plays well and the gameplay feels quite unique but there are a few thing we’ll need to work on. The story is epic and should fuel a game that requires loads of exploration and allows for lots of dynamic plot changing choices. All that said we have not been working on The Flawless for some time now. We’ve been hectic moving country and grafting away on a few other games for other studios as well as a few prototypes for future games.

The Flawless: Art’s Tale – ‘The Cat King’s Mask’

 

What are these ‘other’ games?

Maybot Run:

Bloodline Games asked us to give them a hand developing a game for PC (Steam & Itch.io), Mac, and Android (Google Play). They said it was politically motivated. Trying to show problems with the current UK government and the class divide in the UK in a funny satirical way. As soon as they told us that the art style was influenced by Viz comics, David FirthSpitting Image, and Monkey Dust we jumped at the chance. The game is called Maybot Run and is a ridiculous, hilarious, often surreal infinite runner with some quite deep gameplay for the genre. You play as Maybot and have to run, jump, slide, and shoot your way to dystopia. You collect taxes, steal wheat to build up you naughty meter and become your ultimate form. Votes can be collected in the game and used to unlock upgrades and new characters. The game is out now on Steam.

Maybot Run by Bloodline Games Trailer (gameplay)

The Last Pilot:

The Last Pilot is a cyberpunk 2d shooter set in the same world of cats (Typha) as The Flawless: Art’s Tale. The game is a blend of the top down shooter genre and the sh’mup genre. Think Hotline Miami meets R-Type. In the top down sections the player can walk around giant airships talking to other characters, shooting enemies, collecting loot, and fighting bosses. The player can then jump into their plane and take to the skies frantically shooting down baddies, collecting power ups, and battling massive aerial bosses. It will tell a story from the world’s history explaining events before Art ever travelled to Typha and became The Flawless hero. The game started life as a number of mini games for The Flawless: Art’s Tale that merged together to become a really interesting indie game in its own right.

The last pilot blasts down some aerial enemies at night

VR Project:

This project is in its early stages so we can’t give too much away yet. What I can tell you is it deals with some interesting themes. Themes of mass unemployment, over population, a lack of jobs, and the use of AI and technology to replace human workers. The game will have a number of possible paths and endings with player choices really affecting the story. The game is influenced by indie games like ‘Papers Please‘ and ‘Please, Don’t Touch Anything‘. It will initially be released for the HTC Vive on Steam with possible future releases on Oculus and PlayStation VR. It may be a while before we have more information on this project as the Maybot Run and The Last Pilot are taking priority.

So why not just polish and release The Flawless?

The prototype was only a small section of the game. In it we tested most of the gameplay, the day/night cycle, and weather systems. Most of the story, characters, areas, and baddies were missing from the prototype. They only exist drawn in our mass of notebooks. We have learnt a lot from the prototyping phase. We want to make the game the best it can be and for it to run every system optimally. This will take time, we are going to re-think the art style, keeping the monochrome kid’s drawing inspired basis, but expanding on it to allow more fluid animations, transitions, and more spectacular effects. We are going to rewrite much of the code using what we have learnt in the prototyping phase. We will start integrating the sound track Electric Fan Death has been working on. Finally, we will start to build the world based on the designs we made in the prototyping phase. The road ahead for The Flawless is so long for such a small team. This is why we have decided to release a few other smaller games first.

Hero Art meets a freaky stitch-eye in the moonlight but whats through that weird door?

Where have you been?

If you’re wondering why we’ve been quiet on the blogging and updates side here is a short explanation. Firstly I got promotion in my day job which ended up being a huge burden taking up all my time. Tony has been doing a Masters degree which has taken up most of her time for the past couple of years. We’ve moved country which has been quiet stressful. Its taking a while for us to settle into the UK way of life. Hopefully now as Tony reaches the end of her dissertation and I have left the time hungry day job we can get back to some serious game development and blogging.

Keep tuned for updates on all our projects. If you enjoyed reading this article and are interested in our game development not keep up to date with all our indie games by following us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Google+.

 

#flawlessthegame #TheLastPilot #MaybotRun #indiegames #VR 

Ste Wilson is a director, game developer, and programmer at Bare Knuckle Development Ltd. When not coding away on BKD games he can be found playing video games on console and PC. He also makes music under the music maker name of ‘Electric Fan Death’ and loves playing guitar, writing tunes, and producing music.

Indie Game Progress: The Flawless Art’s Tale

We’ve been really busy working on the prototype build of The Flawless: Art’s Tale. Here’s a quick update on the progress.

This is just a quick post to update everyone on our progress on our indie game The Flawless: Art’s Tale. The game has come on leaps and bounds and we now have a pretty much working prototype of both the sidescrolling element and the turn based battle element. The gameplay needs some testing and streaming but it feels good to explore the game world shooting down the robot baddies and then teleporting into turn based battles with more intelligent living baddies. This mechanic is quite unique and will allow for some interesting boss battle, taking out the robotic armour via fast paced, quick trigger finger shooting actions and then jumping into a strategic battle with the intelligent being wearing the armour.

Stitch Eye – a creepy intelligent baddy from The Flawless: Art’s Tale

 

We’ve built an amazing story and fleshed out a lot of the history and lore of the surreal cat world, Typha. The game world will require much exploration to discover the truth behind the tale and there will be many hidden secrets and Easter eggs to find. We’ve also built a number of mini-games that aren’t so mini anymore. They will be playable at various arcades throughout Typha a la Shenmue, and the Gold Saucer in Final Fantasy VII. The day-night cycle, procedural weather system, and season system are all complete in the prototype. We’ve also completed our party system, inventory system, and in-game menus. We still need to finish off the speech system which will allow the player to make choices that will directly effect the game world and the future story path. The graphics and art style still need some work but this will be done as we transition from prototype to first game build.

 

Hero Art finds a treasure chest in The Flawless: Art’s Tale’s prototype build

We still have a lot to do before we start the transition from prototype to actual game. We need to do more testing of gameplay, build on the speech and choices engine, work on more in-game artwork assets, and more thoroughly design the areas. Initial play tests of the prototype are very promising and it looks like the game will be something quite unique.

Our young hero Art meets Borange the cat for the first time

Well that’s our quick update on our progress on The Flawless: Art’s Tale. If you want more insights into our indie games or Bare Knuckle Development you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. Until next time, all the best and keep gaming 🙂

#FlawlessTheGame #indiedev #indiegame

Ste Wilson is a director, game developer, and programmer at Bare Knuckle Development Ltd. When not coding away on BKD games he can be found playing video games on console and PC. He also makes music under the music maker name of ‘Electric Fan Death’ and loves playing guitar, writing tunes, and producing music.

Best Indie Games – Death Trash and Sunken

Post apocalyptic debauchery and hardcore dungeon madness, we’re taking no prisoners in this week’s Best Indie Games . Boom!

Busy, busy, busy with The Flawless: Art’s Tale but just when you think you’re ready to get stuck-in, something bad happens and ruins your week. We’ve had broken laptops, busted up motorbikes and family scares (don’t worry everything is fine). In the past few days everything seems to have settled down a bit so we’ve been cracking on with the indie development for our epic game again… Whilst Ste’s been wrestling with the code I’ve been figuring out the plot some more and checking out other amazing looking indie games. This week I’ve found two really awesome looking games that you just have to have a look at. Are you ready for Death Trash, a post-apocalyptic RPG by Stephan Hövelbrinks, and Sunken, story driven action-RPG by Stevan Jevtic and Vladislav Mihailovic! Watch out people these tricks aren’t for kids so get ready! 

Death Trash

Stephan Hövelbrinks (Talecrafter) has been making a splash on the indiedev scene recently with his new game DeathTrash. I can completely understand why, the images on the web are undeniably exciting and make you want to see more of the game. Stephan has taken part in a number of game jams but this is his first ‘big’ game.

Death Trash is a post-apocalyptic role playing game. It features a world full of interesting characters and strong personalities to match. I like the gritty cyberpunk art style, it really sets itself apart from other games out there at the moment. The strange and grotesque scenes really draw you into the post-apocalyptic world of Death Trash. Images such as the oracle bleeding from his eyes into a pool of old blood, or a guy called ‘Fleshface’ who seems to have lost all his limbs really hint at the depth of the lore in this world. The variety of characters is also impressive with scenes of debauchery and mayhem as if Mad Max and the Sex Pistols had had sordid one night stand. The scenes in Death Trash are so vivid you forget it’s pixelart, it’s a world that is begging to be explored.

Death Trash party hangover

Death Trash is not all about the art, this game promises to provide some great gameplay, with real-time combat, item crafting, and exploration. What really stands out to me is the dialogue. Stephen explains that the dialogue is going to be just as dangerous a weapon as your guns will be. Often what you choose to say will decide if you survive or perish. From the snippets of dialogue that I’ve seen already it seems clear that the dialogue is going to be as vibrant and colourful as the game art. It’s refreshing to see witty and risqué humour that is unapologetic and does not mollycoddle the audience. It’s a style that we haven’t seen in a while. There is also going to be local co-op gameplay, so you’ll be able to enjoy this epic, gritty world with your real life friends.

Co-op mode and trash talk

Stephan explains that Death Trash is influenced by games such as Fallout and Planescape Torment. What a pair of great role models to choose. Although you can totally see these influences in its art style and atmosphere Death Trash definitely has a feel all of its own. I wonder if Death Trash is going to have as many options and provide as many choices as its inspiration. If Stephan can get even 50% close to what those game are we’ll definitely have something special on our hands (no pressure Stephan!). As Stephen is still developing much of the game, the whole concept is not set in stone and things are most likely to evolve, we are looking forward to what he can conjure up. The project started in the summer  of 2015 and is set to be released sometime in 2016. We are really excited to be immersed in this gritty, gory world and find out more about its brutal inhabitants.

Can’t beat a good beard

If you, like me, are eager to hear more about the romp through a post-apocalyptic future that is Death Trash check out the official Twitter, IndieDB or website.

 

Sunken

I came across Sunken whilst I was voting on Greenlight. Its art work instantly caught my eye as it reminded me of Baulder’s Gate: Dark Alliance on the PlayStation 2, which was one of my favourite games back in the day. Sunken is being developed by Stevan Jevtic and Vladislav Mihailovic. They started this project around 6 months ago and are in the middle of their Greenlight and Indiegogo campaigns. Sunken is an action-RPG with elements of the roguelike genre and promises to keep you addicted with unforgiving gameplay.

Sunken is set in dark, damp, dirty dungeons, and with creepy bad guys lurking around each corner you’ll never be too far away from a fight. You, yielding a sword and a plethora of magic tricks up your sleeve, make your way through the depths of the dungeons uncovering the story and collecting items along the way. Stevan and Vladislav explain that Sunken is going to be ‘hardcore’ and that although the gameplay may be slower paced in comparison to other games, this is intentional in order to allow for difficult battles. The aim of the game is survival and you will want to survive because when you die in a Sunken dungeons you die!…you lose everything, levels, items, equipment, the lot. It’s not all doom and gloom, you keep your skills, yay! This is where the classic RGP element steps in. Developing your skills is imperative.

Dungeon brawling

\r\nOne aspect that is shrouded in mystery is the plot. Stevan and Vladislav have expressed they want this game to be immersive which is why they have opted to avoid procedural generated dungeons. They want Sunken to have details and an atmosphere that will leave an impression therefore procedural or randomized levels could come across as being generic. In regards to the plot you will be told the story of Sunken is the form of lore books and narrative. But, what is this story? They really don’t give much away, so I guess we’ll have to wait. Not for long mind you, they plan on a 2016 release. In the meanwhile you can follow their progress on Facebook and Twitter. If you like the sound of Sunken you can always support them on Greenlight and Indiegogo.

 

Sunken Trailer

Two really cool games there and if you are still in the mood you can always check out our game The Flawless: Art’s Tale. For our latest blog posts and news follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Thanks for reading everyone and happy gaming!

#DeathTrash #Sunken #IndieGames #RPG #IndieDev

Tony Leavy is a director and writer at Bare Knuckle Development. When Tony isn’t writing plots for BKD games or articles for our blog she can be found travelling the world taking amazing photographs. She is also passionate about education and using video games to make education more inclusive and a more motivating experience.