Do you have an iPhone, Android, iPod, iPad, iToaster, iSock or iWeirdSenseOfHumor? This holiday season we plan our releasing our first major mobile game! It is an RPG/Battle-Puzzle game calledAdventureQuest: Battle Gems.
You battle by touching the screen and connecting 3 or more gems of the same type. We got creative and added slime levels, lava challenges, bombs, cages, and a bunch of other crazy game mechanics. As you read this we are in the home stretch of creating the game's 140+ monsters and 256 levels.
Yes, it will be free. Probably an optional upgrade in it -- but we do not know what yet, we have been competely focused on the gameplay and level design. We want you to fall in love with our first mobile game.
The Battle Gems project was started to "teach us how to make mobile games" so we would be ready to create a mobile version of AdventureQuest Worlds. It turned into something really amazing... we hope you will be one of the first people to download it and try it out when it is ready this December.
My favorite part of the design notes is sharing the behind the scenes stories of how we make things. Many of you have been with us for many years-- you have seen what I am about to talk about first hand. But if you are just joining us, this is an interesting point in the story to jump in! Behold, this year's brand new 2014 Artix Entertainment Calendar Poster!
We created our first calendar 4 years ago. We worked really hard on it, using mostly Oishii's art (Oishii was the first artist to join the team.) It featured all of our female characters. The reaction was overwhelmingly "Uh... this is girly!" We even recieved a phone call from a parent asking if we had any that were more... you know... for boys.
So, LOL, the next year Diozz joined the team. He created a more villain oriented calendar and it was recieved really well. We were able to make it thanks to Toys"R"Us to helped cover the costs of production. It sold out completely HeroMart, but, unlike our card game, it did not do well at all in Toys"R"Us. We actually bought calendars back from Toys"R"Us to put more on HeroMart that year. The following year, we created our first Calendar Poster. It was the coolest thing we had ever created. We made it double sided. The front side had the calendar on it. The idea was, when the year was over people could flip it over and it would be an awesome stand-alone-poster. Players loved it!
This year, Diozz drew the scene above as a personal gift to me. It was so... dark, dangerous, with a feeling of action and no matter how many undead surrounded Artix he was going to fight and fight and fight and win! I asked Diozz if we could use his art for this year's 2014 calendar and he smiled and said he was honored.
Dage spent several days digitally painting it. It was tricky because the original picture was landscape. We tried it, but a sideways poster just felt weird. So Diozz and Dage spend a lot of time repainting and re-editing it to fit perfectly on a tall poster. You probably want to hear about the class and items that come with it, but you can see all of that on the HeroMart site.
I really wanted to share the story and love that went into creating this. The poster/calendar has become a new yearly tradition and this one... perfectly matches the new dark, epic, and heroic feel that we want to put into our games. If you get one -- I would love to see a picture of it on your wall!
NOTE: To give our support and help those affected by Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda, we will be donating 20% of all calendar profit to the Red Cross in the Philippines through the end of November. AdventureQuest Worlds has 1,329,791 players who live in the Philippines. So if you are going to get a calendar, order it now—it feels better knowing your game stuff is chipping in for a good cause!
Upon the winds you will find a whisper of doom, "Grimskull is coming." We thought he was just something the Paladins thought up to scare the young Knights in training. The slight possibility he could be real sends a shiver down my spine.
The rumors say Grimskull is coming... but if the stories are true, it will not be this week. It will not be when you expect it. It could happen at any time, any place... all that you know is it WILL HAPPEN. When it does, it will happen in AdventureQuest Worlds.
Looooongest day ever! Rolith is sick, Alina is sick, Verlyrus is the most amazing person ever helping us code on his birthday (so totally wish him happy birthday), Tomix was up until 4am his time working on the cutscenes, Dracelix made another weapon for you guys, and Cronix did last minute awesome art on the ninjas today too (after creating the ghouls as his first ever monsters last week and the Alina monster this week) before he had to go! It's been a craaaaaazy day!
Now, though, you get to play through the real-life-inspired quest of Rolith's Bachelor Party! Artix did an amzing job planning the real life event and has even more to tell you and show you!
When did you first start playing AE games? How long have you been playing? How is it possible that we will have been creating weekly releases together for 10 years next week? 10 YEARS!?!?!? We need to do something special. Not just special, we need to do something bigger and crazier than we have ever tried before. We need to do a new "1st!" you are hereby invited as a VIP guest, October 12th @ 6pm EST for a special event that will take place not just here in DragnoFable... but in ALL 6 of our major games! (Next Friday!)
Here it is (Run!) The original, never before seen 3-vs-3 combat engine that we fused with the ArchKnight exploration system to create DragonFable. Click on the white button to begin combat. You control the three units on the left. You can tell which character is active because they have a yellow circle under them. Click on your opponent to attack. Yes, it is possible to attack members of your own party... and even yourself. The first special attack effect I added was "confuse" which is indicated by stars spinning around a character's head. When confused a character will attack a target completely at random and is uncontrollable. Please remember... this was made waaaaaaaay before DragonFable. (This is why they do not let me program anymore!)
Meanwhile... in an EbilCorp Dungeon
So, I am still trapped down here. It is very lonely. Just me... and *pulls out cell phone* My buddy George Lowe. I should probably use the cellphone to call for help. But it down to only 10% battery and George Lowe really cracks me up. That is right George... "I do not like dem Ninjas" Everyone's life and dungeon experinece should be narrorated by Space ghost. Oooh... I just heard something. Sounds like footsteps... will post tomorrow!
Sorry for the late post today. My video game company was overthrown by a awesome fan who is known online only as Winnie. How did this happen? Good question! A few years back her parents arranged a phone interview with me for Winnie's Girl Scout troup assignment. Her and her sister are serious players that have been with us since DragonFable. I have been in touch with the family ever since. So as part of their family vacation, they arranged to stop by the Secret Underground Lab. Overjoyed at meeting them all in person, I said to Winnie, "Good! Now that you are here, you can take over." Next thing I know she says, "OK." and commands our ninja guards to take me away. A few hours later I woke up here. Not sure where "here" is. Sorta dark. Hope it is not an EbilCorp prison. At least someone left a laptop in here.... it is sorta small though. Pink. And smells like girl scout cookies. By the way... can someone send someone to rescue me please? Or Maybe some undead? Ooooh... I nearly forgot. Here is today's picture!
Today's picture! Twilly Version 3.0
There have been 6 versions of Twilly. Starting with the tennis shoe wearing green bean with an afro version (You can see this hanging in Yulgar's Inn within AQWorlds) and moving onward to the adorable moglin that he is today. Here is the 3rd attempt at Twilly... back when he had the football shaped head that started all of the Moglin punting jokes! Check back tomorrow... and I post the actual, semi-playable, Chibi ArchKnight combat engine (built before we ever wrote a line of code for DragonFable) for you to laugh at. Then get ready... because it is almost time for FRIDAY RELEASE DAY!
After the the original AdventureQuest was created, I tried making a game to play in my Pocket PC (Because they were going to be THE FUTURE!) The game was called ArchKnight. It was the story of a young boy who dreamed of becoming a Knight... and to become a Knight, all he needed to do was save a Princess. The game was build with bitmap graphics instead of Flash's built in line art for speed... and the art was tiny for the small hand held screen. The humor in the game was unique for its time and the quest style was fun. As you may already know, it is this game that was the basis of the DragonFable project! ... but there was another direction we could have gone. Instead of making DragonFable, we considering making... Chibi ArchKnight.
Can you imagine if Ghost, Tomix Oishii & Thyton were all drawing this style instead of DragonFable style? Do not get me wrong... these little chibi characters are cute. I drew them for another 3vs3 chibi combat game that I also made for the PocketPC. Yup, that is right. DragonFable combined the walkaround and cutscene concept of ArchKnight with the 3vs3 combat system that these little chibi heroes used to fight. Zhoom coded the entire thing from scratch over a few months. These were the days before the secret underground lab existed... when AE headquarters was my dining room table. We used to have as many as 9 people come to work at the house. The neighbors were so scared that there were so many cars that they called the police on us.... twice! I remember showing the game concept to the police officer and he said, "Woah. you guys are really making games? Cool!" Check back tomorrow and I will post another tasty treat from this vault of old game files for you! Hmmm, I wonder which one we will pick for tomorrow *dunn dunn dunn*
Forum/Twitter Question: What are you thoughts on the little chibi DF/AQ characters? What would your character look like if you were one of them?
While doing a major backup of all my files*, I stumbled upon a treasure trove of original AE game files and graphics... including prototypes and original art for DragonFable! As we are only weeks away from the epic finale of DragonFable's Chapter 1, I thought you might enjoy some behind the scenes secrets of how this amazing game came to be.
At first, we were trying to add a walk-around-engine to the original AdventureQuest. The code was written by a awesome player named Tynril. But, a lot of players felt it changed AdventureQuest's play style too much. So we decided to build a new web game from the ground up to support this play style.... with all new, original graphics and a deep storyline. A lot of people thought we were going to fail. But we were really confident that we were making something truly special. This is about the time that Zhoom joined AE. He wrote the code that z-ordered objects on the screen. Although... there were some problems**. In my next post I will show you what Dragonfable ALMOST looked like. Until tomorrow... Battle On!
* 10 gold says he accidentally deleted more files than he backed up. ** We want to see!!!
OMG! Attention my fellow AdventureQuest Worlds fans... we are going to be on TV... tonight! If you are in Canada, tune into the show EndGame at 10pm EST on Showcase. AQWorlds will appear in tonight's episodes plotline. Yes, I repeat... this is not a commercial... AQworlds will actually be IN THE SHOW. Crazy!!!
Unfortunately, all of us at the lab here in Tampa, Fl are unable to see it... so if you are in Canada and can tune in -- please tell us how it is! *coughs* YouTube the good scenes for us *coughs* This is pretty huge for our gaming community! Here are the times to lookout for:
10:23:23 AQWorlds mentioned 10:24:23 5 seconds of gametime 10:26:13 2 seconds of gametime 10:35:40 Good scene 10:37:01 Good scene
The ENTIRE AE Team is taking a one week break from making games... TO MAKE GAMES!
Yes my friend, you read that right! Next week, starting on Monday we are having the 1st ever one-week-long AE Game Making Challenge! Sound crazy? ... well, then maybe you should join in too!
WHAT!? You are making 7+ new games next week? The entire staff (everyone from AdventureQuest, DragonFable, EpicDuel, MechQuest, AdventureQuest worlds) will be forming into small teams of 2 to 3 people. Each team's goal is to create a new game in only 5 days. The rules are: Anything goes & make anything you want! So far there are 7 teams. The competition starts on Monday and ends Friday night... at which time we all get to play everyting that they make! If you can program or draw, you are hereby invited to create teams with other creative players and create games too!
How will the contest be judged? You and the staff will both judge. We are going to post several polls on the forums which will rate the completed games in different categories (Overall, Fun, Graphics, Sound/Music.)
Is this a good idea? 100% YES. After doing the weekly releases every week, for so many years, the team needs to mix things up and get their creative juices flowing. That is something that all of the big games will benefit from in the following weeks. Also, it will be really interesting to watch and see what happens!
What will the games be like? Everyone is making whatever they want... so your guess is as good as mine, LOL! But there is only one week to make the finished game so they will likely be mini-game sized or prototypes/alphas for larger game concepts. Teams can create their own artwork, sound, and engine from scratch or are free to use things thay have already made. The goal is to be as creative as possible and have fun, there are no rules... just games!
Can I watch? We would love for you to watch and help us with ideas while we are working on the games! We are going to post a special design notes for all teams and we are going to periodically stream live video in AdventureQuest Worlds. (A sneak peek into the secret underground lab... about to be 3.14159% less secret.)
What about the normal Big Game releases? This Friday (just like every week) we have exciting releases coming out for you. Next weekend the games will all be running their special Valentine's Day events. So this really was the perfect time to do this. The best part is... if all team are successful, you could get 7 new games to play next Friday too! Maybe we can add achievements for beating all of them to the Master Account?
AWESOME! I cannot wait! Enjoy the releases this weekend. Starting Monday... we are making some games! (I cannot believe how much I am looking forward to this. It feels like Christmas.)
Celebration AND Color custom evolved DragonLord Armor!!! Congratulations everyone! Today, the eternal Dragon of time prepares to blow out a special cake with 4 candles** on it for DragonFable. To celebrate, the team will be releasing a gift each week of this month for you. Starting today with Color custom evolved DragonLord! Meanwhile, our epic summer storyline is about to unfold. Whether you started playing at the beginning, or are just joining us now... you are part of something truly special. The first 4 years have been an incredible journey. To everyone who supported the game by helping on the forums, visiting sponsors, or becoming a DragonLord... thank you. Thank you for making DragonFable possible for so many happy players. I would like to recognize the hard working DF team for successfully doing a new release each week... and every week... for 4 years! Great job guys! Please join me in a toast to honor DragonFable's Birthday, all of our fellow players, and the friendly DF team *** and smiles warmly at Geopetal, Alac, Rolith, Lim, Tomix, Ghost, Thyton> ..... BATTLE ON!
Color custom evolved DragonLord This upgrade is available for 20K gold through Lady Celestia (Where you train your Dragon)
* Time Travel Faerie says, "Teehee, Missed you... so i've been saving them up!" ** ... what if he has FIRE breath!?!?!? You need to think these things through! *** Mmmmmm.... chilled Moglinberry juice smoothie with hint of chocolate.
Baloon Chickencow sez, "Eat more Bacon!"
Forum Question: What was your favorite DragonFable memory so far?