Happy holidays!

Posted by on 12.23.11
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This year has been a great one for The Game Bakers, and we’re very thankful for your support! The team’s tactical RPG, SQUIDS, has had great success on iOS so far and we’re excited to be bringing it to PC, Mac, and Android in the very near future. Santa has already visited the Squids with some new holiday helmets, so be sure to check those out in the game if you’ve been playing the iOS version. Happy holidays!

Crash on version 1.3.0

Posted by on 12.07.11
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Hello dear SQUIDS players! (french follows) Maybe you are aware that, for some players, the recently released universal update for iPhone and iPad, v. 1.3.0, is crashing at launch, right at The Game Bakers’ logo. We are tremendously sorry about that crash, and we have been digging the code like crazy in order to find what was the cause of the crash. Thanks to your help – you were many to send us feedback and help us with information, especially John and Jeremy who sent us the crash reports – we managed to find the bug. It was linked to some code in the achievements that made crash only those of you who had found all stars of one category. We have pushed the fix to Apple right away and now we are waiting for them to greenlight it. You’ll just have to take the update 1.3.1 to have the game working again. If anyone of you has lost its progress, please contact me and I’ll see what I can do. And in order to apologize about that, if you read this, you can also write to me and I’ll give you little present. Thank you all for your support and please, if you have rated the game 1 star because of the crash, update your rating when it’s fixed! We need your 5 stars rating to support the game! Also, to keep being informed about SQUIDS or about this kind of issues, you can follow us on Facebook or Twitter. Cheers, Emeric ***** Salut mes chers joueurs de SQUIDS! Peut-être êtes-vous déjà au courant, mais le jeu crash pour certains joueurs depuis la mise à jour universelle 1.3.0. On est vraiment désolé pour ce crash, et on a cherché comme des poulpes d’où ça pouvait venir. Grâce à votre aide – vous avez été nombreux à m’écrire pour me donner des infos complémentaires, et notamment John et Jéremy qui m’ont envoyé leur crash reports – nous avons trouvé l’origine du crash. Il s’agissait d’un problème dans les achievements, ce qui fait que le crash n’a touché que des joueurs qui avaient débloqué toutes les étoiles d’une catégorie donnée. Nous avons soumis une correction du problème à Apple, qui ne devrait plus tarder à la valider. Il suffira de prendre cette mise à jour pour que le jeu fonctionne à nouveau. Si vous avez perdu votre sauvegarde durant ce cafouillage, écrivez-nous et je verrais ce que je peux faire. Et pour nous faire pardonner, vous pouvez aussi nous écrire et nous vous enverrons un petit cadeau. Merci à tous pour votre support, et s’il vous plait, si vous avez mis 1 étoile au jeu à cause du crash, mettez-à-jour votre note quand ce sera corrigé, nous avons besoin de votre support et de vos 5 étoiles ! Aussi, pour être informé des dernières nouvelles de SQUIDS ou de ce genre de problèmes, suivez-nous sur Facebook ou Twitter. Merci, Emeric

Big SQUIDS update – iPad optimization, iPod music support, and more!

Posted by on 12.02.11
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The Game Bakers have just released a massive update to their tentacle-stretching, cephalopod-flinging RPG, SQUIDS. The biggest news is that the game is now optimized for the iPad, meaning it looks just as gorgeous on the iPad’s big screen as it does on iPhone and iPod touch! Here are some of the great features now included:

  • Universal App: The original SQUIDS is now a Universal App. Play it on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch (or all three!) for the same low price of $1.99.
  • Horror in 3D: A 3D anaglyph version of the recent Halloween map. Go old school with your red/blue glasses to see the Squid heroes and their cranky crustacean rivals in all three dimensions. Crazy.
  • New localizations: Japanese, simplified Chinese, and Russian languages join the game’s pre-existing English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish localizations.
  • Music support: Listen to your own music while playing.
  • Screen rotation: Turn your device and the game screen turns with it!
  • Plus various and sundry bug fixes and interface tweaks to make playing SQUIDS even more enjoyable. 🙂

Today’s update is free for those who already bought the game. New players can pick it up on the App Store: http://itunes.apple.com/app/squids/id467904350  

SQUIDS « Making Of » #1: graphic evolution

Posted by on 12.01.11
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When I was a kid and played video games, I had no clue about how games were made and I didn’t care very much. When I was a student, and while I kept playing, I started wondering how the magic was done, but I thought that somehow everything started by the graphics, the universe, the cool characters and SFX, and ONLY THEN the code was added to turn everything into an interactive game.

Guess what: it’s not how it’s done.

Most of the time, it’s much more efficient to start with very simple graphical assets that we call « placeholders », that doesn’t take long to produce and that can be replaced later on by newer and better versions. It allows to get a feel of the game much sooner, it allows to be flexible in the design and make big changes like the controls or the character abilities. As a designer and creative director, one of the hardest challenge is to share your long term vision of the game with your team and partners with low-fi graphics. Making people dream about a game with crappy graphics is hard, but it’s really worth trying. The game will keep evolving until very few weeks before its release, so flexibility is key if you don’t want to be handcuffed with a bad design or redo everything from scratch and throw away months of work spent on polished graphic assets.

However, searching for the right art direction, the right tools, the right production pipeline, is a work that can start from day one. Here is a little overview of what we did on SQUIDS. In the video below you’ll get a quick look at our research, starting by a poorly edited video made by myself at the very beginning of the project. It was a great help to explain the project and the game to everyone in the team, especially with everyone working from all over the world. Communication is key especially at the beginning of a project.

Then, our star Art Director – Jérôme Reneaume – took the lead and tried a few things with our initial plan of making a tiled based game. Eventually we evolved towards a much better looking solution that was also tied to a better gameplay with smoother collisions.

Hope you’ll like this little video of the birth of SQUIDS.

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