Goodness gracious what a god dang year. I’m late on this because recently I wrapped up one last little update to Christmas ADVENTure, so go check it out a ton of secret work went on it but I won’t spoil too much. Let’s hop right into this dang LONG ASS newspost.
WARNING THIS SHIT LONG LMAO and also maybe shitty grammar and spelling errors, im very tired when i wrote this. Links coming when I wake up im sleepin yall
GAME DEVELOPMENT AND THE SUMMER OF FAILED PROJECTS
God damn the year started out wild. For Pixel Day I made OSO. At the time I was working on Must Murder Mommy with PhantomArcade and that was my main focus at the time. I think I started the original prototype while he was at Magfest, and I made the prototype in Pico-8. During development, the internet at my house got shut off for not being paid heheh, but luckily I was living in town so I could walk to the library and upload in time for Pixel Day. I would like to make a sequel eventually, I have a rough story concept that I think would be interesting.
Then by the end of January, I found out about a game jam, called “Strawberry Jam 2” where you had 1 month to make a horny game. At the time Moawling had a little discord server a few people hung around, so I posted the link there. About 1 month and a bunch of development shenanigans later (I’ll save the shenanigans for an official post-mortem of somekind), Monster Mashing came out! Up to that point, Monster Mashing actually only had about 23 hours of coding done on it. I’m a lazy ass bitch but somehow I manage to release games. I feel like Monster Mashing deserves it’s own writeup/postmortem, so I’ll just leave it off by saying it’s the most viewed games I’ve ever made (it’s the 4th most viewed non-A rated game of 2018 at just over 100K plays as of writing), it got me some of that NG street cred, and it got the attention of Nutaku, one of the biggest (if not the biggest) online game distributors/websites. More info on that later.
At the end of March, I released another game. White Only. The gameplay came from me trying to make a simple action game backend shit, and the idea was just some bullshit because I thought it’d be funny to have a game where “you have to kill black people”. I figured I should shove in some pretentious ass bullshit because I love that junk and honestly I’m happy the way that one turned out. Mostly because the reviews are hilarious.
Ludum Dare 40 rolled around in mid-April. I hit up Luis a little while before and he teased the idea of doing that, but when I checked in with him he had to head to New York for that weekend. So last minute I hit up a few people asking if they wanted to do something I think, when I slid into my guy FuShark’s DMs and like the loyal MVP he is, he accepted and we threw together Prom GOblin. We did a postmortem podcast together, so you should listen to that for the full backstory on the game.
May 5th was Pico Day this year, and I released Pico Rising, a Hotline Miami style top down shooter. I really like how the gameplay turned out on this one. I actually had this one in development since before the Ludum Dare, but I got lazy and also neglected it after the Prom GOblin release for a smidge. However I still did get it done by Pico Day! And it ended up winning 1st, although there weren’t too many game submissions. But I’ll take what I can get. That 200$ USD paid for some much needed PC upgrades, that I actually still haven’t been able to do. I had all the parts, but I was waiting for the thermal paste for MONTHS because my mom never got around to getting the mail sorted out, and by the time I got it in late-September, I didn’t have internet and I had to reinstall a bunch of stuff. So I still have a used 2nd or 3rd gen i7 just waiting for me to use since JUNE. God dammit. My current PC cpu is from like 2007 or something god damn.
A few days after Pico Day, I was talking to a pal about my game Whites Only. They told me I “might wanna remove that black people game”. I still find the conversation god damn hilarious because I expected them to be the last person who’d talk to me about that game. I had a nice discussion about Whites Only, and how it may be perceived by different people, how my message might not get across. Actually thoughtful and informative discussion about the game. But like the dipshit I am, I decided to do a color swap on Whites Only, and re-release it as Blacks Only. I still laugh at my dumbass bullshit and I have no regrets. I had the idea for posting these two versions at the same time, but I either forgot about it by the time Whites Only came out, or I got lazy. But at least now they live in perfect harmony. One cool ass thing that happened was the OneyPlays crew played it right at the start of one of their Newgrounds series. The game is very short and linear so they played it all, and by extension about 300K people did too. Yeah imma count that shit. After the vid came out, I actually did a mini-AMA in the /r/OneyPlays subreddit and I was bullshittin around in there. I feel like I was cool enough and my reputation is still somewhat intact after that.
My next game is probably the most personal game I’ve made so far. Kanye West released his album ‘Ye’ at the beginning of June. I wasn’t too big of a fan of Kanye really. I always knew of him for being that guy who does some wacky shit every once in a while for publicity. However I gave ye a listen and it inspired my game “the ninja_muffin2.4 twitter experience 2018’ a whole bunch. I made it in a few days after I listened to ye. I was inspired by the fact that ye was very open and vulnerable. It exposed Kanye and his thoughts more than most of his other works up to that point. It was very introspective. Another slight inspiration was Davey Wreden’s game “Life in the West| (which I can’t find online) where it’s basically a Kanye West twitter simulator. The kanye west bit didn’t really have much to do with it, moreso the gameplay. One laasst little inspiration was the ending in Whites/Blacks Only. In that bit, all the different colored blocks have all these little opinions and thoughts. A few of those thoughts were some of my opinions and feelings, and I wanted to make some extension of that in some form, or a game about the idea of expressing yourself. Thematically or whatever, The ninja_muffin2.4 Twitter.com experience might be my favorite game of mine this year.
At this point the details are very blurry, but over the summer I started work on quite a few projects. I like to call this my “rhythm games” phase because I had at least 2 in progress. One was a stealth rhythm game called “Cyberfunk” that I was working on with IvanAlmighty for Robot Day. Things just sorta slipped after we missed the deadline, however I’d really like to finish that up someday just so that cool ass title doesn’t go to waste.
Another game at that time was a megaman style game, with rhythm elements where you were a scooba diver of some sort. This one I was working on with a few artists, but the main one being Foamymuffin. This project barely got off the ground though but I do have an alternate version I’ve been thinking of that ditches the megaman shit. Maybe I’ll prototype that because I think it could turn out cool.
One last little attempt to get something done during the summer was Ludum Dare 42, which I teamed up with FuShark once again. The theme of the jam was “Running Out Of Space”, so Fu and I made a little game where you had to type in this command line to shift around datablocks and make sure you dont fill up or whatever. There was some shenanigans with development (I basically had to make the game out of some ex-drug dealers house, you can read more here), the gameplay was confusing, and we couldn’t figure out how to move it forward. So it fell apart and we ditched that shit lol.
My gamedev comeback came due to the GameMaker’s Toolkit Jam. The theme was “Genre without mechanic”. So I made a platformer where you can’t walk, you have to jump everywhere, and it was called cityhoppin. I remember the first day or so I just gathered ideas from pals and shit. I didn’t start working on it until a day or so before the deadline. I bullshitted around with a bunch of jump values and different mechanics until I figured I should get to level design. The game design was inspired by “Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy” where you didn’t exactly die, you just fell and you just had to get back up. I also did all the art for that, and I feel like that turned out alright. This was actually the first time I’ve ever stayed up all night. Usually I get a good night’s sleep like a good boy. Also I almost never do any sort of work past 11PM. Maybe I had built up work ethic from all those games I didn’t finish. One of the coolest things was having my little crew of pals all try to speedrun cityhoppin. Shoutout to dogl for being a real gamer. One thing I feel like I captured from gettin over it (and other hard as shit platformer games I love) is the feeling of joy when you finally beat it. I do feel like I struck somethin good there, so hopefully I can get around to making a sequel or follow up of it sometime.
Around this time, I got contacted by a “game scout” for Nutaku. He found Monster Mashing on Newgrounds, and said that he could get me and the gang a hook up with Nutaku. Nutaku is one of the biggest adult game distributors/websites, basically the Steam of tiddie games. Funny thing is I actually emailed them waaayyy back in March about possibly getting MM on Nutaku, either as a free game or premium/commercial, but they declined. However this time they came to US. We had a bunch of hold ups with development since then, but hopefully we can get the game out on Nutaku within the next few weeks! I remember the day we got the contract/agreement, there was this satisfaction that I ‘ve never felt before. Like I’m finally in the big leagues of game development and shit. Everything was going to be official, I’m finally getting a game sold for people to buy. So yeah keep ur eyes out for that one VERY SOON.
For some reason, in mid-November I decided I wanted to organize an art collab. I wanted to do something similar to that one advent calendar from years ago. 2 weeks later Christmas ADVENTure came out on Newgrounds. It actually came out at like 11:59 PM EST, right before December 2nd. The release and development of that game was god damn crazy and pretty much everything was done last minute. Somehow things all came together, it was a Christmas miracle really. I’m very proud of how things turned out. Pretty much until it released, I was very worried about looking like a jackass and organizing a collab only for it to not come together and I wasted everyone’s time. Most of my games also have 3 stars, so I was also worried about people dropping out if they see the collab isn’t that well received. I’m doin a writeup about all the behind the scenes stuff, and the process and whatnot, so keep and eye out for that too.
A few days after the Christmas ADVENTure came out, I released “Dedicated to PhantomArcade” which of course is dedicated to phantomarcade lmao. That game came from a discussion I had with Phantom about a certain submission that I personally thought was low effort and was getting undeserved attention. We had a nice and pleasant discussion, and I went to sleep later in the night. Then, at about 2AM in the morning, I woke up and I couldn’t sleep. I was sorta obsessing over the discussion with Phantom, and the submission. I just couldnt stop thinking about it to the point where it kept me up at night. Maybe I had built up stress from the christmas collab, maybe it was leftover stress from earlier in the day. I then had the idea to make a shitpost game around something he said in our conversation. So I had the idea for the game at like 4-5AM, and I released it at about 6AM. It’s a super simple game, so I suggest you do a very quick playthrough. I still find it funny as shit that it somehow got past judgement.
One little side programming thing I did was the Smash Collab credits sequence. I’m buddy buddy with Ivan and Phantom and I’m kinda the hottest programmer on newgrounds right now so obviously i was their first pick for this. I remember I mentioned to Phantom that I was gonna get good at animation one day just so that I could be a part of one of these big collabs, and he said that I could do the interactive credits. I liked the way they turned out, but since I was doing Christmas ADVENTure stuff, and also im a dumb idiot I put the credits stuff off for a while. The collab had to be delayed because of some technical issues, so I had enough time to get it all sorted out though. Maybe at the expense of my sleep, christmas time with family, and also the Christmas ADVENTure stuff. But everything turned out ok in the end somehow. Another christmas miracle (aside from the fact that the Smash Collab was delayed for a smidge, but that wasnt my fault also Ivan release the source to the Smash Collab menu you coward ass bich).
NON-GAME SHIT LOL
I really wanted to get better at art for 2018. Maybe I did, maybe I didn’t. But I sure as shit didn’t practice as much as I should’ve. However I do feel like I learned a lot about Blender. I participated in the first round of summer jam toons. I did a pixel art/3D animation that I’m still impressed by. Mostly due to the fact that I did 95% of it in a week. I still wonder what I could do with more time.... With the recent Blender grease pencil updates, I might mess around with that 2D/3D bullshit more.
Another thing I feel like I improved on was my music. When I joined Newgrounds music was actually the stuff I focused on. I’ve been slipping in and out of music stuff, but 2018 I did a good chunk of music, I even released a small little EP on Bandcamp, which really just means I accept payments on my songs lol. I’ve been enjoying learning about music stuff, and also I love schmoozing my stinky ass songs into games of mine. It’s like all these things I’m workin towards is connecting. Although I love working and collaborating with people, there’s something nice about knowing that if I wanted to, I could make a game entirely by myself, everything from music, to art, to programming and game design.
Slightly related to the music shit, in 2018 I did a good chunk of livestreaming. I’ve been doing programming mostly, music sometimes, and a whole bunch of bullshittin. I actually find it easier to focus on stream, and easier to stay on task. It’s like having someone constantly watching over your shoulder to make sure you work. If I could have one feature that would be 100% be added to Newgrounds, it’d be some sort of livestreaming feature. I have a lot of fun just bullshitting around and talking to chat.
Another game thing I didn’t bring up yet was me and PhantomArcade’s game. We did get a good chunk of work done on the game, but it’s been a bit stagnant for quite some time. I really do hope we can finish that in 2019. We started that over a god damn year ago. It’s been the longest project in progress I’ve ever had. If we could finish it, it would be a nice little accomplishment and weight off my back. Yall tell me to stop being a jackass and actually get back to working on that lol pls Phantom if ur reading this you need to yell at me I aint loyal I always get distracted with other game projects but I do still really wanna finish this lololol
NON-CREATIVE AND LIFE STUFF
Life was pretty much average all year really. Something I feel like I should bring up is the Newgrounds Discord. I really liked that place because I met a lot of cool ass people there, and honestly it was one of the highlights of the year for me. It really sucks that it shut down the way it did. Really feels unjustified. If I could have an experience like that, I just feel bad for whatever upcoming creative kid who could’ve had a similar experience if only it hadn’t shut down.
Another notable thing is that I’m actually back at my foster parent’s house right now. Last year’s end of year roundup ended by mentioning how I was back living with my mom. Well now I’m back at my foster parent’s so that I can finish up Monster Mashing stuff since my mom doesn’t have internet right now. It was a bit surreal coming back here after so long. I spent the last few years of high school here so it’s actually a bit nostalgic in a way. I used to have so many arguments with my foster mom about me spending too much time on the computer and shit. If I spend too much time on the computer now, I actually start feeling a bit stressed, as if she’s going to come downstairs at some point and guilt me and yell at me for not going outside. Like I’ve got PTSD and shit about this lmao. But so far she’s left me alone. I barely talked to her since I moved back in with my mom, so I caught her up with all the stuff I’ve been doing on our car ride here. All the stuff I’ve been doing on newgrounds, people I know and talk to here. Maybe she finally just understands that I’m not just wasting my time on the computer and I’m doing something with my life to some extent. So thanks to Newgrounds you a fukken MVP
Last year’s post I mentioned that I’d be happy if 2018 was half as good as 2017, and I’d say it was 2x as good. There’s ups and downs but the general trajectory seems upward. Especially with all these new artists on the site, I’m incredibly hopeful for my future, and Newgrounds’. There’s always going to be more cool people to meet and collaborate with here. This place is inspiring like nowhere else. Before NG I didn’t really give a shit about doing art or animation. Even now I wouldn’t call it “my passion” but I feel like I should get good at art so that I can contribute more here. Well that’s enough dweebshit, this took me ages to write and its about 1AM right now. If you made it through you a hero and I hope you have a HAPPY AND BLESSED 2019