Interview: Jan Willem Nijman

Posted May 29, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: Interviews

Jan Willem Nijman (you may know him as jwaap or JW) has created many well known games including 10800 Zombies and Pro Killer Man. He is a member of The Poppenkast. You can view his games on his YYG Profile.

Introduce yourself:
My name is Jan Willem Nijman, aka JW or jwaap. I mainly make score-based arcade games inspired by bad sci-fi, and the 8-bit era. I’m a student of game design and development at the Utrecht school of Arts in the Netherlands.

How did you get into game making?
When I was 11 I read about game maker in some kids’ computer magazine. I downloaded it and didn’t understand anything. I’ve always been messing with it but about 4 years later I got back into game maker properly, got invited into the poppenkast (www.thepoppenkast.com) and started what I’m still doing right now: making decent games.

In all of the time you have been making games, what is the most important thing you have learned about game design. Why?
Cactus once taught me that the bigger the explosions are the better the arcade game is.

What’s it like going to school for game design?
Currently it’s rather bad. I’ve learnt a lot in the first year, but right now we are not given the oportunity to specialize at all. It’s great for people who have no previous experience with making games, but for indies with experience I wouldn’t recommend it. I might quit soon and start a company.

What is your favorite type of game to make. Why?
I don’t have a favorite type of game. I love it when I manage to turn ANY idea inside my head into something fun. That first part, where you go from idea to proof of concept is the best part. After that it gets very hard to finish games.

What is your favorite part of a game to make. Why?
Game design. On any team I’m in I always do game design. I love making up the concept, and making that work through the game rules, and possibly adding context.


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Interview: pulsemeat

Posted April 22, 2010 by DesertDweller
Categories: Interviews

pulsemeat is a game developer who has made games such as Cave and Dungeons of Fayte.   At the moment he does not have a website but is working on one.  You can find his games on his YoYo Games page.

Please introduce yourself:
I’m pulsemeat – indie designer and big time Game Maker fan.

How did you get into game development?
As a lifelong gamer, I pretty much just decided that this would be the most interesting creative outlet for me. So I went to school and received a degree in the subject, and now I’m a professional designer doing indie stuff in my free time.

How was it participating in the Assemblee Competition?
Assemblee was perfect for me since art is usually my biggest limiting factor in making games. When you’re doing everything yourself – programming, design, content, sound, etc. – the whole process can be pretty exhausting. And since I’m not really very good with paint tools, that’s generally what I enjoy the least. So when I saw the set of sprites that Oryx, Oddball, and Geeze put together, I felt like I had a golden opportunity to make an awesome game without having to worry about the headache-inducing parts.

I actually spent a lot of time thinking about the concept before starting implementation, and that’s where I hammered out things like the overall structure and how to fit four players into a time management game. Then I pretty much just spent 8+ hours a day on the game during Christmas vacation, with my girlfriend filling in whenever I decided to take a break (she did the event writing and dungeon design). I had trouble sleeping with all the game details flying around in my head every night, but the game was really a lot of fun to put together and I’d probably jump on another Assemblee if it came up.

Have you accomplished everything you wanted to in Dungeons of Fayte (any more updates?) and are there plans for a sequel?
I think I succeeded in my primary goal, which was to show that this typically-niche style concept that I love, the time management-RPG, can be made accessible to anyone. But it is definitely more a proof of concept than an end in itself. There are a few major things I didn’t get into the game due to time constraints, like unique item rewards and multiple end bosses. I’d also love to do better planning on the content side, so players have more and longer threads to follow throughout the campaign.

Basically, I want to make the game a lot deeper, but most of these things require me to start over from scratch. So while that means I probably won’t be putting out any more updates for the Game Maker version, I’m planning to start a new one in another engine (XNA, most likely) that should address what I think was missing. I guess you can consider that my sequel plan!

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Interview: Greg Lobanov

Posted April 11, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: Interviews

Greg Lobanov (AKA banov) is a game developer who has created games such as Wolf, Assassin Blue, and Cowboy Killa. You can follow him on his blog or his twitter.

Introduce Yourself:
Hello! I’m Banov, and I make really awesome video games.

How did you get into game development?
When I was a lil’ kid, I used to make board games and card games with colored pencils and scissors and a crapload of paper. When I first got a computer, I quickly found ways to make games using buttons in microsoft powerpoint and made a few choose-your-own-adventure games and even a rudimentary space shooter (with the buttons disguised as moving ships); so I guess those would count as the first “computer games” I “developed.” I guess I’ve always been attracted to making games and it has always been a lot of fun to me.

Of all of the games you have made, which is your favorite, and why?
What an impossible question! My games are all my babies, and I love them all equally for a variety of reasons. I know it’s lame, but I honestly can’t pick one.

Between your two current W.I.Ps (atleast according to your site), Dubloon and Solid, which are you most anxious to release? Why?
Solid really isn’t “my” game; I’m only helping with the level design. Brod is the real star of that project. So, naturally, I’m way more excited to put out Dubloon. I imagine it’s going to make a big impact on the Game Maker community… RPGs made in Game Maker are notorious for going unfinished, so Dubloon will be a sort of trend breaker. It’s also an abnormally large game, and it’s nearly finished! I started nearly 11 months ago, and I’m really excited to finish it and get it out soon.
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Interview: Andújar González

Posted April 4, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: Interviews

It has been a long time since the last interview. But I have finally gotten a new one together. This interview is with Andújar González, you may know him as Alexitrón. Since you have waited a long time for this interview already, I will make you wait no more:

Introduce yourself:
I am Alexis Andújar González AKA Alexitrón . I live in a small town named Florida in Puerto Rico with my wife and my cat .

How long have you been making games?
Since 2006 if I don’t count the times when I used to mess with RPG makers on the PC, and even the one that came to the PSX. I never really made anything with those but I liked messing around with them. That was back in the 1990. I also remember having a really old computer at home and there were some books about programming with example code in them, I think the language was Basic, I used to sit down and write all that code from the book to the computer and execute those programs, some where games, some where like random graphics appearing on the screen accompanied by some tunes and then sometimes I just got error messages. Of course I really didn’t know what I was doing so I didn’t care. This was back in the 1980s. I was probably around 8 back then .
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Interview: Andrew Brophy

Posted February 18, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: Interviews

Andrew Brophy is an indie game developer who is a member of The Poppenkast and the founder of The Braingale Team.  You can view his personal portfolio here or his blog here.

Introduce yourself:

Introduce myself? Okay, here it goes, although I can’t remember much, so sorry if this is a little vauge…

It all started in 1993, where I was born in the fifth worst city in this country on the fourth month into a family of three, being the second male child and the only one who cares for games. Sometime after that, I started making them – and fun ones at that!

Also, I’m Andrew Brophy from Australia.

How do you come up with the ideas for your games?

All sorts of ways. I have this bad habit of coming up with the look of a game first, so I’ll make all these nice looking effects, then sit there for ages trying to figure out how on Earth I turn it into something playable. I’d like to think I got that right a few times.

Of all of your games, which would you say is your favorite, and why?

That’s a good question. I’d probably say Angry Gorilla Machine Monsters. As soon as I (accidentally) made the background effect, I knew it’d look pretty sweet. Honestly, I don’t think it’s too fun to play, but it looks nice. I also like Polkadot and A Weekend in Space, because they actually seems fun to play.

How is your game for YoYoGame’s 5th Competition, CowboyKilla coming along?

Pretty well. Most of the core work is done, it’s just a matter of fleshing the game out and polishing it up. The good thing about working with Banov is that we have a pretty similar work ethic, and we both have a very similar idea on how we want the game to turn out, so it’s been really fun working on it.

Besides your competition game, are you working on any other projects? If so, care to share any information (names, general info, screenshots, etc…)?

I’m working on so many. It’s really bad, I’m a total scatterbrain. I do have a few running that I’ll mention thought. First is an exploration platformer called Anyone Else’s World. I’ve been working on it on and off for about two years. There’s a playable demo somewhere online, but it’s pretty old. I’m planning on releasing it sometime this year.

Then there’s Takishawatwo – a follow up to my previous game Takishawa is Dead!, which was pretty popular. I basically wanted to make up for all the issues that the first game had, as well as making a full adventure title (people may not be aware of this, but the first one was made over a weekend). And lastly, I’ve been working on a story-based platformer called Girl since about the end of 2008. I don’t have anything to show as of yet, but it’s going pretty well.

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Interview: Broxter

Posted February 7, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: Interviews

Broxter is an indie game developer from England, whose work includes Blockiliate and Ne Touchez Pas! Flash.  For more of his work, you can visit his (outdated) personal portfolio here.

Introduce yourself:
Hello. I’m known as Broxter (real name, Jack Brockley). I’m a seventeen-year-old student from Stoke-on-Trent in England. I’d like to think that I’m pretty intelligent. Alas, I use Twitter too much.

How did you begin making games?
I found Game Maker in February 2006 after reading a tiny paragraph about it in a UK magazine which I still read, called GamesMaster. At first I found it very difficult to use and it wasn’t until August 2008 that I finally finished my first game (which was featured on YoYo Games after being entered into the third competition) and began using GM regularly; I think this was the point when I became decent at making games and I was pretty happy with myself.

You have recently made the switch to flash. How was that and do you have any tips for others wanting to do the same?
Indeed I have. I’d been wanting (and trying) to make games in Flash for about a year. The main attractions were the possibilities of reaching so many more players (such is the nature of games run in a browser) and actually making some money. After attempting and failing with both Flash CS3 and the Flixel AS3 library, I basically gave up. I heard FlashPunk was coming but I was expecting it to be just as tricky to use as Flixel. How wrong I was. I completed the beginner’s tutorial on the first day of FlashPunk’s release and subsequently fully ported Andrew McCluskey’s Ne Touchez Pas! from Game Maker to Flash in just three weeks. I still had problems but this time I was able to satisfyingly overcome them. I would definitely recommend FlashPunk to other users of Game Maker wishing to experiment with Flash – it’s structured quite similarly and there is a great community forming already.

What are your opinions of FlashPunk?
Simply put, it’s awesome. I can’t thank Chevy Ray Johnston enough. Without FlashPunk, I’d probably have given up with Flash for good. I’ve become so interested that I’ve actually created a dedicated blog – FlashPunked.

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Welcome Back

Posted February 6, 2010 by tdub311
Categories: News

We are back in progress.  You may know this site as IVGM (Interview Game Makers).  After shutting that site down, I have been wanting to start it back up again.

For those of you who didn’t know of IVGM: it was a site that interviewed upcoming and well known game developers trying to get interesting facts and new/secret information on upcoming games.

Along with the “rebirth” we bring a new name: Interviewing the Game Making Universe

So, the main point of this blog was to say: We are back in business.