News! Tech! Tools! Talks! Games! And Stuff Worth Sharing!

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 30 May 2023, 16:53

Better late than never! ;)
I guess most people already know. But Arnt Jensen (Limbo + INSIDE) was granted the biggest art grant in Denmark.
'Kunstfondens hædersydelse' a life long art support grant.

Also it should be noted that this is a first for the games industry in Denmark. There isn't even a category for it. It's a grant labeled under movies.

https://www.kunst.dk/om-os/tildeling-af ... rnt-jensen

Adding fun anecdote in relation to the whole artist thing.

Once at an industry party many many moons ago I was talking to Arnt.. and yes there were alcohol involved and things might have changed in the mean time and maybe he was just messing with me but!

Jonas: But you are a real artist Arnt!

Arnt: NO! I'm not an artist! I'm a social democrat!

Well... One MoMA exhibition and a permanent honorary national artfund grant later. That didn't age too well Arnt. Just saying! ;)


A big grats to Arnt and the rest of the receivers! <3


6 Danish dk gamedevs with artsy projects received smaller grants for their projects.
https://www.kunst.dk/48-modtager-arbejd ... gSkyHYAKEY

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 31 May 2023, 09:05

There is now a free demo of PortaPlay's Gerda: A Flame in Winter.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 31 May 2023, 09:10

TUESDAY, 20 JUNE 2023 FROM 16:00-18:00
Udstillingsåbning: #DKgame – Skærmtrolde, lejemordere og togsurfere
Den Sorte Diamant - Det Kgl. Bibliotek


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 31 May 2023, 10:56

EPISODE 30: Design af F2P spil med Thomas Frøhlich, Director of Game Design hos Kiloo
https://www.idsu.dk/podcast/episode-30

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 01 Jun 2023, 18:08

Ouch! Umami Games is closing down!
Rather sure the team will find jobs rather quickly. But it always sucks when closing shop. Best of luck to everybody affected!
Riley Andersen (CEO and Co-founder):

This one hurts. Umami Games is closed.

When I started building start-ups 5 years ago I knew it would be a rollercoaster of highs and lows.

But I never knew how tough it feels if you create something you are really proud of. And one day, almost from one to another, it's just gone. Auch... crash and burn 🔥 boom!

So that's how it feels. In reality it's a longer process and without securing funds and a growing interest for other technologies this was the right time to end Umami Games.

BUT WHAT A RIDE!
+ 15 million downloads
Nr. 1 on us AppStore
+ 100 games
+ 5 million $ revenue
And pivoting into casual-puzzle 🤩

I will forever be proud of team Umami, the creativity, cool games and tech we made! It was ambitious, it was fierce, it was speedy! 🔥

Mads Anthony and I are back on the rollercoaster. Because that's what we do. We build cool playful stuff that can entertain millions of players. We are super fascinated by creativity, UGC and AI - so lets see where this journey will take us 🚀
Post link
https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/ur ... 193803264/

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 01 Jun 2023, 23:42

Unity 2022 LTS Released ... DOTS Is Finally Here!

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 02 Jun 2023, 09:53

Meta's Quest 3 announcement

They are still in the game and the hardware looks slick.
But their VR division is still operating at a huge loss. Let's see how long they will continue operating in consumer oriented VR and now hybrid VR/AR with Quest 3.
The latest PSVR 2 headset I tried recently was great in relation to the past products. But still suffers from a lot of the same fiddly limitations that makes daily use somewhat of a hassle compared to all the other devices in your life.
Actual break though technology is need to push beyond the small VR niche audience.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 02 Jun 2023, 14:50

Deep Rock Galactic - Survivor beta access request is open!
Developed by Funday Games.

Neato! Will give it a spin!

Incidentally I just had a super nice chat with Funday CCO and founder Anders Leicht Rohde yesterday. Super cool guy and interesting to hear how things are going at Funday... crazy many things in the pipe! :)

The survivor-like genre is probably the new 'indie platformer' springing up everywhere.

I expect the game to do really well. It is already on a pretty insane position on the global Steam wishlist currently at place #141.
https://steamdb.info/app/2321470/charts/ (Number will change over time naturally)

We might see more established IP's going down the same route of survivor-likes in the future.

https://store.steampowered.com/news/app ... 3349168328

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 03 Jun 2023, 17:31

Free steam demo of DK dev Lasse Zacho Malver's, Behold Battle.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 04 Jun 2023, 13:08

Weekend test of SKULLBEAT Rhythm PVP by DK devs Chop Chop Games and Kong Orange.

https://www.roblox.com/games/1029301874 ... usive-Test


Upcoming 'Hero Well' developed by DK dev 'Zera'

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 05 Jun 2023, 17:25

Sadly (but not unexpectedly), the Danish game platform for user-generated content, Crey, has filed for bankruptcy.
https://www.konkurser.dk/konkurs/?id=132741

Best of luck to everybody affected! :)

It's sad, but hopefully, it's the start of something new. Crossing fingers that the closure can lead to some new and smarter startups with experience in the backpack. :)

I tried Crey very briefly a few years back, and it honestly didn't feel well-crafted at the time (it might have improved later). In light of competition from juggernauts like Roblox, Fortnite, Minecraft and others operating in the same space, I never observed Crey gaining any meaningful traction compared to the competition.

Moreover, it's a really difficult space. To my knowledge, Roblox is not a profitable company either. BUT! They own a vast chunk of the players.

The Crey main website is still up (not sure if the games are still operational?! probably not?)
https://www.playcrey.com/

All social media links seem to have been taken down.

Crey CEO Janos Flösser was the main man behind Crey, with a very strong history of being the CEO behind the Hitman franchise of IO-Interactive. He has been incredibly good at attracting funding for the project and the investment firm Promentum Capital.
Sadly, this bankruptcy might hurt the local industry in general, as investors might become even more risk-averse if even the former head honcho of IO Interactive couldn't work his magic once again.
I would say it's all about finding the right project and team. It's difficult but not impossible! :)

Public numbers from Crey Holding ApS, the company owning the production company, seem to indicate that there should still be substantial capital in the company family, 50 million DKK in 2021 numbers. But honestly, I think it's the right call to not go further with a company that never found a sizable audience to run on its own accord after 5 or so years. Or has any realistic means of getting there either. There is no point in investing further if the thing just doesn't work.
https://www.proff.dk/firma/crey-holding ... NVR7QI06Y4

Crey was probably born out of the aspirations from the single-player UGC platform BitGlobe (as I recall, it was started as a side project around IO Interactive). Sadly, BitGlobe never worked either.

And again! BEST OF LUCK to everybody involved! :D
I wish you all land somewhere good as soon as possible!

Video of Crey


News source:
https://www.facebook.com/dkgamedev?__cf ... =-UC%2CP-R

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 05 Jun 2023, 22:46

So the Apple Vision Pro (AR/VR) headset was just revealed.
Tech actually looks amazing >on paper< in the presented video.

Price be like...(and not unexpected) expensive yes! $3499 a piece excluding DK sales tax of 25%.

Hardly a platform for devs to focus on except if Apple pays for development as I don't expect it to be much more than a rather small niche for the rich. I think they will find it hard to build an ecosystem around at the current pricing. Consumer VR and AR is hard enough already.
Who knows!? The usual Apple problems regarding software development and buying the device might not even be worth a port alone of existing titles. They must know this.
And besides there seems to be no current controllers matching the standard of today's VR headsets. Severely limiting the use cases for the platform as a VR/AR gaming place to go.

Hence they focus more on main stream activities like movie watching, macbook big screening, face time and such. Quite the price tag to pay for things you can already do on your devices AND without the need to lug a large unwieldy headset around. The form factor does not look very practical beyond home use (possibly work screen if you won't sweat and over heat and eye strain.. all the padding back and front looks like it could get rather warm) and occasional use.

For most people it will not make sense at all to throw money at the Vision Pro. But naturally the richie richs will throw their money at things like this just because they can.

But great they are pushing out new exiting tech in the field.




Update: However if still interested after my rant. ;)
There is an application form if you want to build something for the device in Unity for Apple's visionOS.
Again if you have something the Apple or paying clients could find tasty and put money into development it would be a good idea. Otherwise.. I would currently be rather skeptical of the investment in time and hardware would be worth the effort at this particular moment in time. If just for fun and geekdom.. sure, fire away!
https://create.unity.com/spatial

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 08 Jun 2023, 10:45

So boom! The Forgotlings Kickstarter dropped yesterday!

Looks amaze!

Developed by (old industry friends) Danish Throughline Games and published by US based Hitcents.
As a continuation of the universe and characters from Forgotton Anne. (great game by the way) So looking forward to Forgotlings.
This time with seemingly a stronger focus on combat.

Forgotton Anne was successful in the sense of 'Very Positive' reviews and now that they are making a new game!

Personally a bit worried as the Kickstarter dropped out of nowhere and is off to a slow start. It would be generally advisable to build prehype so the Kickstarter can launch with a bang. Reaching 20%+ funded on day 1 should be the goal.
I hope Throughline and their publisher has some tricks up their sleeves.

The goal of 744,886 DKK is a bit on the high end. Taken into consideration the quality and appeal of the project.. in theory is should be realistic if they really start pushing it out there. Getting it out there is the real challenge. The project appeal is there and is certain to attract some attention! The question is if that is enough, I hope so! :D

Best of luck to Throughline Games! <3 :D
I hope the absolutely best for the project!

Adding: Vizlab Studios from Viborg also worked on the project. :)
(Had a nice chat with the heads at Copenhagen MatchUp a little while ago, great guys!)

Forgotlings - Official Reveal Teaser Trailer


Early gameplay preview




Kicktraq data: https://kicktraq.com/projects/650985621/forgotlings/
Image

Image

Steam page


**Kickstarter update
So I played the demo..... It seem like they could use some help on getting a proper game feel and control layout. It's not exactly intuitive. Lessons from the first game was not learned. So that's not optimal.
Besides the Kickstarter seems to be going somewhere, there has been some crazy spikes now and then. It will be nerve wrecking to follow. From initial 'that looks scary' to coooould happen with a little luck and some more spikes. Crossing fingers! :)

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 09 Jun 2023, 18:53

A look at the DK project COCOON from Geometric Interactive, Jeppe Carlsen and the gang! :)

I have a pretty good feeling about this one!


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 10 Jun 2023, 15:23

The next game from (DK based) Die Gute Fabrik has been announced.



Saltsea Chronicles

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 12 Jun 2023, 15:15

Trophy Games Acquires Transit King Tycoon
Trophy Games Development A/S acquires assets from the bankrupt Finnish game developer Bon Games, strengthening its position in the Transport Game genre. Bon Games’ “Transit King Tycoon” has achieved a remarkable milestone of over 5 million downloads on the Android platform, and is currently generating a monthly revenue of 20,000 EUR.

https://view.news.eu.nasdaq.com/view?id ... &src=micro

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 14 Jun 2023, 13:33

SpellRouge playtest

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 14 Jun 2023, 19:53

Image

Daaaaaamn 2023 is really bad for a lot of things! :| :cry:

KILOO is closing!

(At least the games part, there are various companies in the KILOO family)
The owning companies (VANTAGE CAPITAL ApS and Kiloo Capital A/S) public figures seems to indicate they are financially well padded.

The most likely cause could be that the games division was closed down as a consequence of just not being able to find the next big thing after Subway Surfers was sold back (the vast majority of rights) to SYBO. But who knows, there might be other causes as well.
The founders has historically not been very talkative to the press, so we might never get the full story.

Various SoMe posts from former employees floating out there confirming it. Nothing on the official channels as of yet that I know of
https://www.linkedin.com/posts/thomasfr ... 3904-WBz6/.
https://www.linkedin.com/posts/mogenssk ... 33952-HSwc
https://www.linkedin.com/posts/bjarke-h ... 69216-Jqjr

And oh maaaaan sad to learn about the closure! BEST of luck to everybody affected! <3
They gave it a lot of shots with a string of releases through out the years!

And as always! I hope everybody affected will land quickly on their feet and in time I hope we will see some new cool startups. Company closures is a great breeding ground for starting something from a clean slate by people who are in the same situation and are used to working with each other. Now is the time! Let's GO!
Hoping all the best!

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 16 Jun 2023, 19:24

Diablo III: A Cautionary Tale | 12 Years of Development Hell


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 19 Jun 2023, 12:56

DK game project spotting! A new burglary game 'Break, Enter, Repeat!' is in development from Rhombico Games https://www.rhombicogames.com from Vejle.

Previously known as Hermes Interactive, Rhombioco Games started out as a solo hobby project.

So far no Steam page or real gameplay to show from 'Break, Enter, Repeat!. But I'm sure it will come down the line.



Previous titles by Rhombico. Quite impressive output! Nice to see!

2017


2019


2022

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 21 Jun 2023, 15:22

Danish started company FRVR (Now Malta based)
Is working on AI game generation with their tech FRVR Forge.

FRVR Forge Official Teaser: AI-powered end-to-end game creation.


Sign up here
https://forms.clickup.com/36255767/f/12 ... F3LKVYU6CB

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 24 Jun 2023, 21:23

Image

DK mobile puzzle game release from indie Paction Games from Korsør. This time it's 'Sticky Struggles' for iOS, Android and on the Amazon Appstore.

More about Paction Games here
https://pactiongames.com

Facebook trailer video
https://fb.watch/lmV-1yvSDY/

Sticky Struggles download links:
App Store (iOS): https://apps.apple.com/app/sticky-strug ... 1658302212
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... yStruggles
Amazon Appstore: https://amazon.com/dp/B0BP81NDDB/ref=apps_sf_sta

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 25 Jun 2023, 12:27

DK project spotting
Calcium Chaos: Derailed
Developed by Lunch Money Games from Grenaa and published by the Swedish Spelkollektivet.

Actually played it a tiny bit at the showcase at Nordic Game spring 23.

A demo is currently available on Steam.




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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 28 Jun 2023, 08:37

ALS v3.0 for Unreal Engine. It's free on Github by the way. It's a super imressive system! (Current version is 4.24 by the way)
We are using it on DarkSwarm.. though it was not intended for top down shooters. So there has been some battles there.

Advanced Locomotion System - Community Version on Github
https://github.com/dyanikoglu/ALS-Community


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 28 Jun 2023, 08:41

New AI services coming to Unity. Muse and Sentis.


Blender 3.6 features


The Incredible Details Of Half Life Alyx

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