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

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

Unread post by jonaz.dk » 21 May 2021, 12:13

(DK) Cosmic Top Secret launching on consoles today. Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PS4.

Besides it's available on Steam and mobile from 2018.

Launch video from Stevnsfortet in a few hours


Played the Steam version a bit. I really like the story premise but the game felt a bit too clunky for my taste to really enjoy the story.
But Steam player reviews seems positive so that's great! Sadly the estimated sales looked like it really didn't connect with a larger audience.

**Oh yeah I also saw the Cosmic Top Secret installation at Stevnsfortet last summer. But didn't play the location game. I was mostly there to show the kiddo the fort after my time in the air force where we got a little tour when it was still operational.

** Adding. Trine is also featured in the DR series.
Atombomberne over Danmark. Really nice actually!
https://www.dr.dk/drtv/serie/atombomber ... ark_205387

And also it would be nice to see the story of Cosmic Top Secret as a documentary.

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 21 May 2021, 18:24

Beta of the web based FPS Bullet Bonanza from KILOO.
Made in Play Canvas. In house development it seems.

https://www.bulletbonanza.io
Image

First beta experience was an empty server. :rolleyes

But otherwise.. it loads up snappy and you are going in no time PlayCanvas just works! Also the first DK project I have seen made with the tech.
Characters are cute I like! Though they might not appeal perfectly well with an FPS audience. Even young kiddos generally want something 'cooler' then teddy bear like creatures running around and shooting. The youngest of players in first or second grade is greatly attracted to the visuals of Fortnite for example. Which is a step or two above cutsey animals. So that's a bit of a concern. And having very young kids in a very skill based PVP game will undoubtly give them a hard time and they are likley to leave quickly after getting pummled.
That also plays a role in how they will monetize the game. Which seems like it is currently unclear. Best advice would be to look at the most popular FPS games in Roblox if that is the young audience they are going for. That would be quite tricky in it self to compete against though.

The gameplay is a very basic online shooter. But well made in the category of web based FPS games. Fast snappy gameplay. Of cause it's impossible to judge the netcode without actual players in a match.

Personally I would just be blunt and do a super simple battle royale game mode. As it is very good at keeping players on their toes and meet up and close at the end of the match.
Perhaps with a bit larger map on top as this is the style of the map already and that would fit very well with a BR type gameplay.

Jonaz recommended fixes recap:
- Reskin to fit a bit older audience that gels well with a more hardcore FPS gameplay. Especially characters.
- Do a simple battle royale gamemode. Could work fine with 16 player plus+. Have a map size that fits.
- Study monetization in Robolox for the FPS genre.
- Get more players in beta.
- ** Adding.. also in general if you want to make multiplayer games for a young audience. Study Roblox! See what works.

Let's hope my concerns are unfounded and everything goes well for the project! :)

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Read for free passes for Nordic Game 26-28 May

Unread post by ErikRobertson » 22 May 2021, 11:31

Hej Spiludvikling.dk!

Please pick up your free pass for Nordic Game, Europe's largest game developer conference, on 26-28 May. It is good for both live and pre-recorded talks as well as the popular Discord activities. (All digital, it's not even in Malmö, it is broadcast from a secret location in Kbh V, but do block November 3-5 for the first real Nordic Game in years.)

- Go to: https://conf.nordicgame.com/registration/
- Select "NG21 May online - Studio pass"
- Check the "Redeem code" checkbox
- Enter the code on the following line in the textbox that appears
ERUJUpUtaBazY2AJ
- Proceed with the registration as normal
- Welcome!

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 25 May 2021, 10:12

The Secret To Resident Evil's Success

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 25 May 2021, 11:14

Unreal Engine 5 - New Game Development Features and Workflows

Tune in, Wednesday, May 26:
7 AM PDT / 10 AM EDT / 3 PM BST

Watch the YouTube Premiere here:

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 25 May 2021, 23:41

Valve is making a Switch-like portable gaming PC
https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2021/05/ ... gaming-pc/


SteamPal?? (A bit corny title imo)
Finally it seems like this type of Switch like portable gaming device is about to get some legs. Still odd that MS or Sony hasn't responded to Nintendo's dominance in that market at all. Perhaps they gave up before even trying or are still working on a response?! (Though I do understand why they would opt for a 'live and let live' stance)

But the article strongly indicates that Valve is indeed working on such a concept. Though classically Valve has not had a whole lot of luck in the hardware market. (Thinking Steam Machines and Steam Controller). The whole VR thing with HTC and their own Index went pretty fine for Valve at least, but it looks like they are losing out to Facebook/Oculus by an increasing margin.

There are so many factors that has to align just right for such a concept to take off for real. But a steady stream of amazing must-have exclusives (of preferably beloved franchises) and the right price point would be a place to start among many other issues. But I'm actually not sure Valve truly can deliver that focused effort. Even though they (maybe??) have the theoretical power to actually do so.
A high price point and just being able to play your existing Steam library (and only the Linux available titles) doesn't seem like that much of a sell. Sure it is nice! and it will have an audience.. but not enough to really make a dent in Nintendo's dominance with the Switch.
If they do Steam Controller pads on the device as joysticks.. I can't even.... XD
Hopefully they have learned their lesson by now!

A small range of similar devices is either available or in the works/concept phase from other vendors. But they don't really have much to push with. Except the hardware concept. That's just not enough these days to truly make a dent.

** Adding.. also it would be a extraordinary tricky space to enter with the ambition to make a truly sticky device.
Finding a space in between established extremely versatile devices like desktop gaming PCs + PC laptops - mobile phones - tablets and the Switch with it's beloved franchises on the other end will prove highly challenging. And adding component shortages on top, I'm not even sure if it is possible. But lets see!
The Switch form factor has certainly proven itself with (near) 85 million sold units. So I will not abandon all hope. But it took Nintendo to do it.
Let's hope everything turns out for the better when or if something more tangible arrives. :)

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 25 May 2021, 23:47

Horizon Forbidden West Gameplay Reveal in a few days

**Adding: HOT DAMN! Looks pretty amazing! :cool:
Bought the first game!.... haven't taken time to install it yet. Oh.. me and big ass games. :blush :rolleyes


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 26 May 2021, 10:56

A tiny first look at in-game graphics of the next title from BetaDwarf (DK). Project HVN.

Clearly the usual Blizzard influenced art style. Looks great! Also includes existing assets/characters from the shared Minion Masters/Forced universe. Also if any indication, I reckon they could have the game running on mobile devices with some tweaks to the UI size and controls without any major problems. If they choose to go for that route eventually. Maybe! Maybe not! Time will tell! But for now it seems to be a PC focused project.

**Update
Just did a search and found the mobile version of Minion Masters is available for pre registration on GooglePlay. So mobile seems to be on their radar for sure. After being in closed beta since last year.
https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... l=en&gl=US

**Adding
Also not completely sure on what the whole biome portal thingie tearing the world is all about?! But I guess it's important! :)
I can only assume 'Splintering 38%' has something to do with it.
Theorizing the world is transformed over time or by triggering certain events like capturing a node or maybe defeating a boss. Perhaps it plays an important role in gameplay where some characters fare better in some biomes as opposed to others. And that dynamic changes over the course of a play session as the biome portal thingie sweeps the land.
And perhaps here in this effect lies an inherent coop gameplay loop where you get a biome boost or nerf depending on biome. So you will have to help your allies with other biome faction stone-paper-scissors style. Or ask for help yourself.
Also it might have some sort of direct effect of what enemies that spawns in each biome. That could easily be the case.
But interesting! :) Looking forward to seeing more.
I would love to see the effect rolling across the land. You can clearly see the tree is being sliced. Pretty sure it looks nice up and personal!

**Adding more
Also is seems the hero character is from the 'ice realm' based on his skills. So I guess we can assume a minimum of 3 realms (biomes) might exist. Desert, Forest and Ice.
And why not fire? That would be very classically gamey. But that is meta speculation. ;)
And if the team at BetaDwarf should make it's way over here to this little site on the big old web and have a good old laugh over my wild speculative projections. It's all good fun and games. I enjoy a bit of wild speculation and imagination journey. YAY! imagination journey! :D ;)

On a curious note. They only show a lone player character and no indication of team play. In a game focused on friendship and combatting loneliness.
The only indication are small green diamond icons on the map potentially indicating other players in the world?
I'm sure that it is just a tiny fluke and there indeed are other player characters and team play in the game. But a curious coincidence none the less. :)

** Adding even more (late)
We should also expect the game to Free to play. Using techniques that would be fitting to the game. We'll see how it's implemented in the end. F2P can certainly be shitty implemented in a lot of cases. But it's not a given. Also speaking for a F2P game scenario is their $6.6 million investment from London Venture Partners and their history with Minion Masters. So I'd call it likely that Project HVN will be F2P.
Also it is a multiplayer game would need for a steady stream of players with high retention to have a long lasting and thriving community. Free just removes the first barrier of an upfront payment for playing the game.
Might also be a purely coop focused game. As coop is probably the best case for friendly communities. PVP is just that more hostile and competitive by design.
As usual on my speculation.. let's see what happens! I can VERY easily be completely off target. It's just so fun to speculate. :)


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 26 May 2021, 16:33

!! And Unreal Engine 5 intro dropped now.
UI updates! Quixel Bridge is now fully integrated. Better world partitioning for multiple world builders. New IK solver. Data layers. New anti aliasing algorithm. Fully revamped audio system and much cool!

NICE! :cool:

And is currently available for Early Access download.
The demo scene should be quite the big beast.

Though mostly aimed at hi-end development. But also aiming at bridging the gap for smaller developers.
Which makes sense as their main focus is hi-end. But there are just so many hi-end developers to go around. And many has their own in house engines anyways in the big leagues.

** Also adding: The hardware requirements to take full advantage of UE5 to it's full potential is quite on the steep end of the scale. For a full game a ton of very hires meshes would be needed. Starting up the project from fresh and the general data requirements is pretty flipping insane. Just in the demo scene alone I think it's around a 100GB download. And should take a VERY long time to import the assets into the engine. **CORRECTION** Actually it didn't take a VERY long time. I just heard that in a youtube video.
On my aging 1060 Asus Laptop with 16GB of RAM. It was pretty damn quick to load up!!!!! :cool: :D :cool: :D
Framerates are not the best. But it actually runs on hardware under recommended specs. I'm super impressed!

Unity will certainly have to work hard to keep up in the hi-end segment.
I would probably just recommend they should focus their main efforts on the low-end and other sectors to expand and cement their current dominance. As the numbers of developers are much more numerous. Still they needs fancy hi-end features to lure in the dreamers and really sell the engine with some flashy hi-end visuals. They have certainly proven their cinematic team is of a very high quality.
But they will probably be unable to claim the hi-end crown anyways within realistic boundaries with an ever changing goal post.
Not that I don't think Epic should get some qualified competition. That would only boost both companies. By all means they should.
But in the long term sadly Unity seems to be a bit caught between a rock and a hard place as free open source alternatives grows in the low-end. 🤔 (Technically you could call Unreal Engine free open source) With small and very fair twist.
But it is many years out and much can happen in the mean time.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 27 May 2021, 18:42

Save & Sound
The new 3 day game music online festival by our Aalborg devs, Bedtime Digital will be live in a very short while.

Day 1


Day 2


Day 3


https://m.twitch.tv/bedtimedg

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 28 May 2021, 08:56

Just reposting Horizon Forbidden West gameplay reveal in a higher quality having to skip to the action.

Just looks flipping amazing! :cool:




And also I got inspired to think about how The Avatar Project from Massive could look like. With all the greenry and niceness going on in Horizon. Not too far away from the world of Pandora.
And is otherwise completely unrelated to Horizon.

Comparatively the Avatar Project team at Massive will have something to rub shoulders against with Horizon thematically visually in a similar vein. Likely not the same launch year. The Avatar Project is probably much further out.
I expect them both to be 'pretty on par' on visuals. But it will be interesting to see how that project actually pans out from a gameplay perspective. And so far there hasn't been much detail on the project as a whole. And depends if Massive was targeting lastgen consoles in their early development. But me thinks they kept the option open for nextgen visuals.
Also I could VERY easily imagine they would go for open world gameplay.

A bunch of my old Massive colleges working on FarCry 3 MP back in the days is now on the top of the food chain on the Avatar Project. So that's great to see! :cool: Haven't talked to them in ages. Besides they are very tight lipped and I wouldn't write about anything from their mouths even if I knew. Just to make things clear.

**Adding: Also fun fact. :) We guys on the FarCry 3 MP team was at the Montreal studio for training for 3 months back in 2009 learning Dunia (The engine) and processes . And the Avatar team working was fairly close by in the large studio. All behind keycarded doors. Super secret stuff even for other Ubisoft employees. We never saw a thing from the game back then.
Perhaps with some stealth take downs and inventory looting we could have handled that situation. ;)

Guessing they will likely focus on online gameplay. The ambition and ability of the studio is certainly there.
Will be interesting to see what they come up with some more years down the line.
They could also turn it down a notch and just focus on a cinematic single player experience like Horizon. All options are open!

** Warning imagination journey! Purely speculative **
There are many mechanics and systems they could pick and choose from that would fit well with the Avatar universe. Crafting, ranged and melee combat obviously. Stealth and take downs. Beast handling/riding/flying, finding secrets in nature. Factions humans vs. Navi.
Who knows there might even be a 'bad guy Navis' or alternative tribes of Navi like creatures to introduce more factions. Actually it might even make sense for some sort of sentient under water faction. Everybody knows how obsessed Cameron is with the ocean. And having larger segments of under water sequences in the upcoming movies. I find it possible to have creature-interactions there, more advanced than being eaten by space sharks and chase scenes. So Navi-mermaids?! You heard it here first! (This might age really well or most likely really bad!) ;) :D
But a minimum of 2 playable factions is possible. Humans and Navi.
The Navis would have free form traversal climbing in trees and rocks. Swimming under water. Humans would be using their technology to get around for the most part. Sometimes with multiplayer manned vehicles.
The Humans would obviously have to mine for unobtainium and natural resources. Claiming territory and building bases to upgrade their production capacity etc. And the Navis would have to defend against these incursions through (maybe stealth) raids and eventually all out war.
I might be not so Ubisofty??.. but base building in a easy an accessible manner for the factions could play a role. It just fits really well with the theme of the universe.
The Navi could very well have access to this planetary gaia network thingie and be able to control the world through plants and animals. Maybe skill unlocking? And perhaps with some control to have the critters of Pandora attack the humans in waves with NPC waves of creatures.
The humans would have access to the whole avatar program to infiltrate and sabotage the enemy Navi.
Fire might play a role as a mechanic initiated by the humans to act like a Battle Royale like shrinking of the playable area.
A question is of how emergent/simulated vs. how event scripted missions these things would be weighted. It would probably be more on the mission based side of things? Because that's the usual Ubisoft way.
Another question is where Cameron takes the new movies (eventually) coming out. There were some talks about more underwater segments and on Earth. So perhaps there could be some reflection of this in the game. But not really counting on too much Earth time in the game really. Pandora would probably be it. As it is the essence of Avatar as we know it for now.

The overarching game structure could be that of a Battlefield like game. Playing on a larger maps where human players capture resources nodes. While building their strength though bases/vehicles upgrade on one side and the Navi is raising gaia points that can trigger NPC creature attack swarms and summoning rideable/flyable beasts. And the game ends when one faction reaches dominance.
Or a similar thing scaled up to Planetside scale/style game.

Or on the other end of things a more MMO like structure where you trigger various respawning missions instead of a finite game mode like a Battlefield like game.
Or some sort of hybrid solution?! Where the MMO like structure has access to Battlefield like matches in instances.

Also the overarching game structure and gameplay types depends on how much they will rely on known and proven mechanics. With the budget being of undoubtedly very large size. The game will most likely consist of a lot of proven structures and mechanics. As anything else would just be too risky. So expect the usual known mechanics from open world games plus sprinkles of new things here and there. BUT! You never know. Maybe they have a bit more innovation in store than expected.

Either way the price tag for such a game is on the very $$$teep end. But Avatar IP and the general success of the studio I find it likely that they could pull something like that off.

Anyways lots of options for mechanics derived from the world exists that would make a lot of sense in a big online Avatar game. It is actually a very game mechanical world by design. The question is how it is eventually structured and weighted in the end. I do think it could be a pretty cool game! And not like the first Ubisoft Avatar game that was a bit of a dud.

Most certainly I couldn't imagine it to be a looter shooter like The Division games. Even though they have a lot of code base in SnowDrop to support this. Wouldn't really fit the Avatar IP. But would build on it's fundamental open world, online components and a whole lot of other systems in the SnowDrop engine.
One thing to take into consideration is that a lot of the project's DNA is likely to share >some< fundamental concepts and code base with their upcoming Star Wars project. As it could also have played a role as a showcase piece for them signing the Star Wars project to begin with and just makes sense from a work/resource perspective. But that is just more speculation upon speculation.

Who knows! :) Let's see what time brings!

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 28 May 2021, 14:12

GRAVEN form Slipgate Ironworks™ is now out in Early Access.

Quite enjoyed the demo! :) Though the mixed reviews seems to indicate the Early Access release is pretty much the previously released demo.
Their strategy of releasing early and working with the community improving the game (as stated on their Steam page) seems to have backfired for this reason. Let's hope they will push through and make a great game regardless! Also there are some quality issues in the early release.
Their recent 2020 financials are looking healthy so I would rule out the release as a desperate move to get some bank. But a genuine move to work with the community. It's not always easy! And I hope it's just a poorly communicated release mishap and not a failed attempt at a cash grab that would lead to lower player trust in the studio.
** Also very simply suddenly charging 19-20€ for something very similar that was free for a period. That is something a normal company would do for the full finished game.
Now they have to pay with mixed reviews. Something no developer would be interested in.
One round of poor strategic judgement and bam! You get punished by the community with bad reviews. Sinking the project immensly in recognition. Thats something big IPs can live through perhaps and still perform well. At least in the short run. But a new IP like Graven will suffer more.
This incident will serve as a 'grave' (badum tjing!) 😉 lesson they and others will hopefully learn from.
And now lets look to the future and hope they deliver an awsome game on the other side. It's the only remedy.

Best of luck with the release and future fixing of it. :D
And I most certainly think there is potential here and it would be sad to see it not hitting the mark.



GOG
https://www.gog.com/game/graven

Epic
https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/p ... DETkVYnT80

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 28 May 2021, 16:15

And (DK) Flashbulb's Rubber Bandits is out with a free summer prologue of the game. Following the winter prologue.

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 29 May 2021, 11:56

Steam must be boiling and feeling the heat from Epic and other platforms with their slew of free game offerings.

All good for the already spoiled gamers! These are some excellent games if you haven't been there already.
I could add 0 new games to my account.

Go fetch free stuffs!

Also Hitman 3 has a free starter pack now
https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/p ... arter-pack

Little Nightmares is free until 30th of May 2021


Company of Heroes 2 is free until 31st of May 2021

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 29 May 2021, 14:50

So Bedtime is publishing The Forest Quartet from Mads & Friends!
Very cool! Grats to both DK teams! 👍🇩🇰
Perfect match I might say!



Demo here! For a limited time. It's really something out of the ordinary. Comes recommended!
A few small things like not hiding the mouse cursor during gameplay and no exit button/menus or setup is available. But that's small fries that I'm sure will be addressed before release.
The demo is a surreal beautiful visual treat of abstract mechanical puzzles in a strange tale of a ghostly jazz lady and her still living band.
Some voice overs in Danish. :)

So far 5 years in the making.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 29 May 2021, 19:23

Anybody want a key for Undead Horde?
Already got it on my account and kiddo didn't want it.
It's pretty decent! :)

NEYVK-LJLNN-2TR30

First come first serve!

Game be like:

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 30 May 2021, 20:01

Interesting! There is now a free stand alone SDF modeling tool MagicaCSG.
I'll guess I'll take it for a spin just for fun at some point. It's very early now version 0.0.0. Now that's early! :)

** Slight update. Easy to get into and works as advertised and didn't crash! Buuuut currently there seems to be no export options to mesh. So for other purposes that pretty graphic renders or writing your own importer/exporter it's a bit useless in it's current state. But I'm sure that will change over time.

**UPDATE** It is now possible to export proper data (.ply) from version 0.0.1.



MagicaCSG download page:
https://ephtracy.github.io/index.html?page=magicacsg

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 30 May 2021, 20:38

Big Ambitions from (DK) Hovgaard Games has a Steam page!
Projected Release time: August 2022

Estimating this project will probably also do really well for Hovgaard Games. His first game Startup Company did super well! This is another indie dream story in the making. :)
As usual only time will tell but my gut feeling is warm.


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 31 May 2021, 11:29

The Making of Dishonored | Noclip Documentary

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 31 May 2021, 21:52

@Malte_Burup has a cute little competition running on Facebook. Be creative with their character creator and win MIND SCANNERS. The winner is picked Wednesday. So be quick!

Post in his FB thread to enter the competition

Mind Scanners Avatar Picker here:
https://mindscanners.wiki/avatarpicker/

Facebook URL
https://www.facebook.com/jelshoj/posts/ ... &ref=notif


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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 01 Jun 2021, 11:23

Builder's Journey from (DK) Light Brick Studio... RTX on! :cool:
Launching 22nd of June on PC.

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Unread post by jonaz.dk » 02 Jun 2021, 10:27

Ynglet from Nifflas' Games (SE but living DK I think) + Triple Topping IVS (DK) as publisher has a playable prologue.

Played some earlier demo something. It's was rather nice! Highly polished and pretty looking, abstract and unique puzzle platformer. Though it's not really using traditional platforms. More like floaty zones.

>> Controller only! <<

And the map is Copenhagen! :cool:

Launching this Saturday 5th June on Steam.



Prologue is available now to see if it is your kinda jive.




Estimating sales to be in the lower end of the spectrum. But be a good game that will win some indie street cred.

Would recommend they should start looking at Switch (especially) + console porting. Would be surprised if it wasn't already part of the plan in the mid near term at least.
And working with some larger publishing entity with more resources in console publishing. Not sure indie friends is quite enough to give the game the push it needs in the market.

But crossing fingers and best of luck with the launch! Sweet Nifflas could need some good times coming his way. :)

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jonaz.dk
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Re: News! Tech! Tools! Talks! Games! And Stuff Worth Sharing!

Unread post by jonaz.dk » 03 Jun 2021, 01:05

More free stuff!

Tell Me Why is free for a limited time.

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jonaz.dk
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Re: News! Tech! Tools! Talks! Games! And Stuff Worth Sharing!

Unread post by jonaz.dk » 03 Jun 2021, 08:34

And more free stuffs!

This time the monthly free gamedev assets on the Unreal Marketplace
Image

Linky linky!
https://www.unrealengine.com/marketplace/en-US/store#


Including the
Third Person Story Adventure Template for Unreal Engine 4 (v. 1.0)

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jonaz.dk
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Re: News! Tech! Tools! Talks! Games! And Stuff Worth Sharing!

Unread post by jonaz.dk » 03 Jun 2021, 21:39

GMTK: Can We Make Better Tutorials for Complex Games?

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