It only took us like six or so months to get everything online, but the day’s finally come: Venus Patrol’s proud to present the first installment of Fantastic Video, a new, regular series showing off all the talks from last year’s Fantastic Arcade.
In this first video, Rami Ismail & JW Nijman of Vlambeer give an hour-long look into the genesis & evolution of their upcoming Supermarionation-inspired dog-fighting game Luftrausers, a game that can be traced all the way back to 2007’s Airhound, a 3-hour game-jam game that since seems to unfortunately have disappeared from the internet, but which you can see a bit more of here.
Enjoy the video above & the rare chance to peek into JW’s consistently amazing pitch-docs & sketchbooks, and stay tuned for the next Fantastic Video installment!
My original writeup on Teknopants’ brilliant upcoming brawler Samurai Gunn managed to drum up quite a bit of the attention it so richly deserves, with a number of people commenting that they very much wanted more video. And so, presented here is ten-ish more minutes of the other matches held at the game’s first ever official tournament at this year’s Fantastic Arcade.
Above you can see how the action expands as the number of players increases to three, with some more 2-4 player matches included below the fold. As before, click the ‘gear’ at the bottom of the player to up the resolution to 720 or 1080p for the best pixel clarity, and enjoy the ongoing commentary by Karakasa Games‘ Wiley Wiggins & Vlambeer‘s Rami Ismail.
For more information on the game itself, browse through the original post about the game.
Bringing the 2012 Fantastic Arcade to a close, Dennaton’s superbly hyper-violent Hotline Miami was awarded the ‘Most Fantastic’ prize Sunday night, earning it one of the custom trophies above — a real world version of Cory Schmitz’s Fantastic Arcade cabinet, created by Austin’s own Ink It Labs with help from local art-toy studio Shinbone Creative. Terry Cavanagh’s Super Hexagon also earned the festival’s Audience Award, after a weekend of open voting by Fantastic Arcade attendees.
Elsewhere, in an extra-special guest-appearance, Ultima creator, Portalarium founder and real-actual spaceman Richard Garriott handed out the top honor to Fantastic Arcade’s jury-voted top Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy game: Adventure Minute, created by Vlambeer’s JW Nijman and Kitty Calis. Garriott’s prize? A hand-crafted crossbow made by New World Arbalest‘s David Watson, the Austin-based bowyer who served as the inspiration for Ultima series character Iolo.
The full list of Fantastic Arcade 2012 awards for all spotlight games is below the fold, along with the top three winning entries of the Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy.
Today marks the first day of Fantastic Arcade proper — the yearly indie-game celebration run alongside the Alamo Drafthouse’s genre film festival Fantastic Fest — which means updates to Venus Patrol will become slightly spottier through to the end of the week until I can emerge with a handful of stories to tell of how the event went down.
In the meantime, a brief slideshow from the past several hours, including, above, some of the first screenshots of Hotline Highball, a custom version of Dennaton’s fantastically brutal Hotline Miami that takes place inside the actual locale of Fantastic Arcade itself, featuring the greeting you can see by festival co-organizer Wiley Wiggins, inside its own custom arcade cabinet.
Ready to pick your favorite game from the Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy? A B.M.O. update has just been pushed live that gives players (not just developers/participants) the opportunity to log in, download & play all the games (including, at top, Must Party Forever, from Austin-local dev One and a Half Beards), and mark all of your favorites into a handy personal list.
As previously mentioned, fan and local favorites will be featured in their own arcade cabinet for the duration of Fantastic Fest later this week — looking forward to seeing what everyone’s been digging out of the nearly 100 entries that have come in over the past 24 hours! [via Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy, thanks Brett for all the tireless updates!]
With the Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy drawn to a close and submissions already in (more on that in a bit), we move straight on to the rest of the events coming to Fantastic Arcade in just a few short days with a special exclusive.
This Friday, September 21st, Venus Patrol will be presenting the first iteration of THE DANCINGULARITY, a free, interactive dance-party experience being put together for Fantastic Arcade and Fantastic Fest guests by Kokoromi, the game collective helmed by Heather Kelley, Cindy Poremba, Damien Di Fede, and Fez creator Phil Fish (also behind the poster above, inspired by Factory Records designer Peter Saville).
It’s been nearly 24 hours since the kickoff of Fantastic Arcade’s Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy, and so we present a quick round-up of the work-in-progress screenshots and videos that have been coming out of B.M.O., our game jam web platform. Late last night, we gave B.M.O. a global feed of all micro-updates from the developers for those that would like to follow along at home, even if you’re not taking part in the jam.
Below the fold, then, a few pictures from our local Austin Frenzy HQ, where a good crew of around 30 people have been rotating in and out in informal shifts, as well as the happily quite diverse pack of media.
Above, the amazing & ever so slightly Lynch-ian keynote video from Adventure Time creator Pendleton ‘buenothebear‘ Ward, also featuring writer Kent ‘kentisawesome‘ Osborne, and designer Andy ‘skronked‘ Ristaino, which officially signals the start of this weekend’s Fantastic Arcade Game Making Frenzy, where one lucky winner will be given a fruity surprise by Pen himself.
We’ve also just announced one last secret rule for all the games to come out of the jam: they must contain an overt or secret appearance of The Snail, a character that’s appeared in pretty much every episode of Adventure Time over the past four seasons, whether you knew it or not.
Several of us will be in and out of Austin’s local Frenzy HQ all weekend, where Vlambeer‘s JW Nijman and Kitty Calis have set up shop next to VVVVVV & Super Hexagon creator Terry Cavanagh, POP: Methodology Experiment 1 creator Rob Lach, and a handful more local developers in a now-disused yoga studio (which has the amazing/essential side benefit of providing a shower [for pit-hygiene]).
Our friends at BOOM! have also graciously supplied us with a fat pack of Adventure Time comics for inspiration, specifically issue #5’s Eleanor Davis variant cover, for awesome reasons that will become clear shortly.
We’ll have even more strange and amazing details about the jam coming in just a few short days, but until then, looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with this weekend! Drop us a note if you’ve got something extra special you think we should see!
While I’ve already given a breakdown of the Adventure Time Game Making Frenzy, the Fantastic Arcade-related event coming in just a few short days to Austin, TX and around the globe, next week — from Thursday through Sunday — the Alamo Drafthouse will be hosting Fantastic Arcade proper: a free & public celebration of indie game culture featuring custom arcade cabinets for a selection of showcase games and an even larger field of spotlight games, with panels and developer talks by a number of local and visiting indies including Vlambeer, Terry Cavanagh, Dennaton, White Whale, Stoic & more.
In the lead-up to that, the Alamo will be springing the above trailer on unsuspecting movie-goers: a whirlwind tour of games like Proteus, Windosill and Mirrormoon that should hopefully give the general public an intriguing sense of exactly what’s happening just under the surface of what they more generally think of as videogames.
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The story of the Adventure Time Game Jam goes back, well, really until the point when Adventure Time first aired, and more or less everyone on earth simultaneously thought, “this would make the most amazing videogame of all time, even if I have zero idea how it would actually work,” well before it was announced that WayForward would be tackling their own upcoming Nintendo 3DS adventure.
Fast forward a few years, and, innocently reading Michael Deforge‘s brilliant guest-work in an issue of the Adventure Time comic, I had a flash. The reason there can never be one perfect, definitive Adventure Time game is that there needs to be hundreds of Adventure Time games. Just like in Deforge’s version of the Land of Ooo, which includes a Breakfast Kingdom that’s never before been mentioned or otherwise existed, the magic of Adventure Time is that everything is permitted.
And so, wearing one of my other hats as a helper on Fantastic Arcade, the free indie-game celebrating offshoot of yearly genre film festival Fantastic Fest, hosted by the Alamo Drafthouse (aka unquestionably the best movie theater chain in the world), we set about to make it so.
Then, many, many months later, almost inconceivably, it really, actually happened: this weekend, September 13th-15th, Fantastic Arcade will be hosting the first ever official Adventure Time Game Jam, a 48 hour sprint open to any developer in the world, with the best of the playable entries getting their own cabinet at Fantastic Arcade itself the following weekend.
The amazing news: we’re rolling up on 500 people who’ve signed up to take part in the jam, which means that by this time next week, if everything goes as hoped, we could have several hundred new Breakfast Kingdom-esque playable realities that all make sense within the Adventure Time universe, even if they don’t follow what little shreds of canon actually exist within the TV show.
Even more exciting, the jam will be hosted on the Beautiful Mess Organizer, B.M.O. for short (heh!), a new game jam management platform we’ve teamed up with developer Brett Chalupa to help create, in the hopes of setting a new standard for organizing future game jams on the web. We’ll be taking a longer look at that in the future!
For now, you’ve got two more days to sign up for the jam yourself, and not too much longer before you can play all the new games for yourself both at home, and, for Austinites, at Fantastic Arcade, September 20th-23rd.