Relevant video game people on Twitter

Twitter video games


The team behind Kotaku has put together a list of “the video game people you should be following on Twitter”. Unlike many other similar lists, this time the chosen accounts are divided into 8 categories, and each one includes a short description:

  1. Indie Game People (like Terry Cavanagh, “The guy behind Super Hexagon and other wonderful distractions”).
  2. Triple-A development people (like Vince Zampella, “Leading the charge on Titanfall and answering a lot of player questions directly on Twitter”).
  3. The Suits (like Shuhei Yoshida, “The head of Sony’s gaming division has a surprisingly open and engaging Twitter presence”).
  4. Art (like sparth, “Fine art from the Halo series’ art director”).
  5. Jokes (like Peter Molydeux, “An excellent parody of noted game developer and idea-haver Peter Molyneux”).
  6. Official Feeds (like PlayStation, “Official updates from Sony and links to updates to their excellent official blog”).
  7. Critics and journalists (like Leigh Alexander, “Never boring, tweets about games, the games industry, and increasingly, Netrunner”).
  8. Kotaku staffers (like Stephen Totilo, “Likes wrestling and comics”).

It’s an important first step to gather all the relevant video game people on Twitter. As the list is an ongoing effort, some key players are still missing (like the almighty Tim Schafer), but they acknowledge that asking for the community’s help.

Find the full list here. If you think someone important isn’t there, let them know in a comment!


A quick guide through microtransactions and free-to-play

Although microtransactions and free-to-play look like the flavor of the month, they have been part of the industry for years, garnering enthusiasts and critics alike. Part of the prejudice around this type of monetization comes from many poor implementations and a lot of excessive use.


However, when the free-to-play approach is well crafted and an inherent part of a game, it can be successful not only for the companies, but also for the players, reaching a broader audience and catering the experience to different needs.

Given that now even Nintendo is experimenting with free-to-play, I thought it was a good moment to bring the Extra Credits team to give a quick guide through the art of microtransactions.

Hearthstone (2014)

Hearthstone (2014)

In this 9-minute video they cover why you should allow non-paying players to earn hard currency, and at the same time, why you should never sell power, but convenience. There other practical tips as well:

  • Make the game more enjoyable.
  • Make paying more palatable.
  • Make the whole experience feel cohesive.
  • Never split your community.
  • Market test your prices.

In summary, always keep your monetization model in mind when building your game.

Here’s the video:

GameMaker Standard edition for free!

As many of you already know, GameMaker: Studio is a really interesting engine that allows amateur and experienced developers to create their own games without the need of being skilled programmers.

According to its creator YoYo Games, using this software is “80 percent faster than coding for native languages“, enabling people to “create fully functional prototypes in just a few hours, and a full game in just a matter of weeks“.

GameMaker: Studio comes in 4 versions: Free, Standard ($49.99), Professional ($99.99) and Studio Master ($799.99). However, until March 2nd the Standard edition (which includes unlimited resources) is free, and the upgrade to Professional only costs $35. You just need to download the Free version here, and follow the instructions that appear inside.

GameMaker sale

Some people use GameMaker: Studio for creating quick prototypes or trying a rough concept, while others take it one step further and build full-fledged games, ready to be marketed. Either you are curious about game development, need to test a great idea or are ready for start creating your own game, this sale is for you.

If you’re still hesitant, take a look at some of the best games built with GameMaker: Studio:

Pick the perfect game for you

Flowcharts can be really useful for learning more about yourself and even finding your perfect match.

Last month I brought you a funny matrix that included almost every role you can have in the industry. Now it’s turn for taking care of the other side of the desk: the gamers.

This new flowchart will help you to pick the perfect game, depending on what you want/need right now. It was created by the team behind the Silver Oak Casino, but don’t let that fool you: here you’ll find from classic games like Tetris to modern masterpieces like Uncharted 2, including my beloved Day of the Tentacle.

Day of the Tentacle (1993)

Day of the Tentacle (1993)

Don’t trust me? Check these examples. It always start with a key question:

Do you want to avoid using much of your brain?

  • If you want to use your brain, have unreal reflexes, aren’t on drugs but want to feel as if you were… go play Geometry Wars 2.
  • If you don’t want to use your brain too much, don’t need maximum creativity, want to solve some puzzles, don’t feel the need for a storyline and are an Edward Gorey fan… go play Limbo.

Yes, it can get scarily accurate.

Find the perfect video game for you

Source: Silver Oak Casino

Meet your dream job!

As part of its New Year, New Job 2014 special, gaming magazine Develop has been publishing a series of interviews with industry professionals to explain their jobs and challenges. During January, every working day brought a new interview with a member of a prominent studio.

Sully Mike Monsters Inc. Job

The result of that effort is a great piece of work that covers all development areas, even including some managerial roles. In an attempt to preserve and share that research, I decided to put together all the interviews and organize them in departments.

It’s not only a good chance to take a look at your dream job, but also to learn from other perspectives as well.

Mario dream job



Game Design




Nintendo’s first free-to-play experiments

Nintendo's RustyLately, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has been a lot in the news, be it to address the company’s surprising annual loss or to outline some of its next steps, including the much-commented possibility of expanding its business to smart devices. Everything had a refreshing honest approach:

The way people use their time, their lifestyles, who they are have changed. If we stay in one place, we will become outdated.

It is our intention to release some application on smart devices this year that is capable of attracting consumer attention and communicating the value of our entertainment offerings, so I would encourage you to see how our approach yields results.

Apparently, the moment of truth is here (or at least, part of it), as  Nintendo is starting to chart the free-to-play waters with Steel Diver: Sub Wars and Rusty’s Real Deal Baseball. Both of them are exclusive for the 3DS eShop.

  • Steel Diver: Sub Wars is a submarine-based first-person shooter.
Steel Diver: Sub Wars

Steel Diver: Sub Wars

Its free version offers a couple of submarines, some singleplayers and the multiplayer mode. Paying $10 unlocks the rest of the game. In other words, the Steel Diver: Sub Wars’ free-to-play approach looks a lot like a demo.

Steel Diver: Sub Wars' free-to-play approach

Steel Diver: Sub Wars‘ free-to-play approach

  • Rusty’s Real Deal Baseball, in turn, is a collection of baseball-related minigames, and is scheduled for April (it was originally released in August for the Japanese market).
Rusty's Real Deal Baseball

Rusty’s Real Deal Baseball

The game comes with some free minigames, but additional ones must be unlocked by paying $4 for each of them. However, here the free-to-play approach comes with a tweak: the players can bribe the shop owner (Rusty) to get a real discount on each minigame.

(…) Players can purchase additional mini-games in a unique way: by haggling to lower the real-world price for each downloadable game. Additional games start at $4 apiece, but giving Rusty items or listening to his problems might improve his mood and motivate him to offer steep discounts.

Rusty's Real Deal Baseball's bargain system

Rusty’s Real Deal Baseball’s bargain system

In the year in which Sony and Microsoft have a lot of guaranteed press coverage because of their new consoles, Nintendo is doing a remarkable effort to stay relevant. Fortunately for us, so far every announcement seems to be part of a bigger strategy.

We’ll see how this attempt at free-to-play works for Nintendo. The good news is that, putting the monetization experiment aside, both games look fun.

Source: Gamasutra

Famous movies as 80s/90s games!


If you’ve been reading this blog for some time, you’ve already realized that I really like pixel art, be it highlighting The King of Fighters XII’s modern approach, or giving some tips for creating cool animations. However, pixel art can also be used for reimagining current games in a much simpler form, as Junkboy does, who even includes some gameplay alternatives in his work.

This time I introduce you to Aled Lewis, who uses this retro style to portray some famous movies as famous 80s/90s games:

Thelma and Louise (1991) as Out Run (1986)

Thelma and Louise (1991) as Out Run (1986)

Rocky IV (1985) as Punch-Out!! (1987)

Rocky IV (1985) as Punch-Out!! (1987)

Forrest Gump (1994) as Tecmo Super Bowl (1991)

Forrest Gump (1994) as Tecmo Super Bowl (1991)

Back to the Future (1985) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Back to the Future (1985) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Groundhog Day (1993) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Groundhog Day (1993) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Hot Fuzz (2007) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Hot Fuzz (2007) as Streets of Rage (1991)

Battle Royale (2000) as Bishōjo Senshi Sailormoon S (1994)

Battle Royale (2000) as Bishōjo Senshi Sailormoon S (1994)

You can purchase Aled Lewis’ artwork at his online shop and at the Such Pixels exhibition, open until March 1 at the Gallery 1988 West (Los Angeles).