Mommy's Best Games, Inc. is an independent game developer founded in 2007. Our seventh game, currently in development, is Pig Eat Ball on which we started working in 2013. This is behind the scenes thoughts about game development and marketing.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

GDC 2014

Last week was 2014 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco and I was fortunate to get to take Pig Eat Ball there to impress the press! I was there from Monday to Wednesday and the first, and most important event for me was showing our game in the "MIX" show. The Media Indie Exchange was held Monday night in the IGN office and offered 47 indie devs a chance to directly show their game to a wide range of journalists.

Pig Eat Ball and the Rmp Shkr controllers set up before the crowd showed.
Pig Eat Ball was showing in Multiplayer mode with 4 spots available, and off to the left, there was a Single Player version available as well.
The "Rmp Shkr" controllers are specialty controllers I created to help promote the game at public shows like this. The idea is when a player gets his tail bumped in the game, his "tail" gets bumped in real life. Basically the Rmp Shkrs rumble your butt when you get attacked in the game.
Boys and Girls loved it!

Hey, it's Greg Miller and crew from IGN laughing it up!

Did I mention the IGN office is pretty cool? Yes that's a "Sharknado".

The night was a huge success, with lots of people coming to play the game, then running off and finding press friends and bringing them back with new people shouting things like "I'm supposed to play the butt rumble game?" Destructoid even said they liked the game with *and without* the special controllers (so that was a great sign!)

After Monday night I headed to the actual GDC show. I had bought a 'cheap' Expo pass (cheapest there is, at ~$200) so I could see the show floor, but it didn't get me into the talks. Still worked out okay as they had a variety of exhibits.

One fascinating area was arranged by the Videogame History Museum which put together collections of old, and sometimes rare game consoles and peripherals, and even design notebooks from old companies! Definitely made me think of a few weeks ago at the LAX show.

One talk available to everyone was by UbiSoft and happened to be about the editor for Rayman Origins--one of my favorite recent games! Their tech was very impressive, especially how it allowed for dynamic terrain deformation in 2D, while managing to keep looking gorgeous as it was adjusted.

Just outside the Indie Mega Booth I met the creator of the "Choosatron". It's a fun little game system in which it prints out a choose-your-own-adventure text game, and you press buttons on it to pick your direction. By the end you have a printed record of your adventure! No more peaking ahead to see what page to pick.
On the actual show floor I saw a few neat games. Enemy Mind reminded me of Gaiares--it's a shmup in which you can swap ships by capturing enemies ships, and basically get new weapons.
iPollute was made by Israeli game developers and featured clay-mation and a "reverse" ecology theme. Basically, you do better, the more you pollute, which makes players think about the worst types of pollution.

And finally, my favorite, completely-insane video game controller--the Rolfpillar. I would have loved to play it but didn't get the chance. Apparently you roll back and forth inside the tent to play the game!

Overall GDC was a great trip as I got to visit with Ian Stocker who just released Escape Goat 2, show off our work, meet old friends, and play some fun games!

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