Posts by Ben Ruiz:
The holidays are here, which means a lot of you Blurst fans and general gamers probably have your wallets thinned out from all the games you’ve been buying for your friends and family members (yourselves). Since you are a gamer, and we are gamers, and we all have an irrational desire to spend more of our time and money on the playing of said games, we decided to make it a little easier for everyone. The highly-saturated-with-Blurst-blue image you see in this post is actually a greeting card you can print out, fold up, and distribute amongst your loved/liked ones.
In addition to having some of the most seminal and historic of our characters decorating the inside, there is a coupon code printed on the back! So if the recipient of the card does not exhibit dichromacy color-blindness and is literate, they should see it and be able to immediately take advantage of it. Of course by “it” we mean 25% off of a Raptor Safari purchase! Since Raptor Safari is pretty much everyone in the free world’s favorite game, you can thank us for our immense generosity by buying it and telling all of your friends to buy it.
While the rest of the studio is in Austin this week for the 2009 Austin GDC, I’m hanging back doing art experiments that might inspire upcoming games. I’ll also be listening to sweet game soundtracks, watching assorted Godzilla movies, and if you play your cards right; performing various high speed dances. All on the webcam! So go the webcam page where it will be pointed at my screens for the week and watch the game art manifest.
I don’t have a whole lot of specific ideas in my head at the moment, so I’ll be perusing this really cool thread on the forums about game ideas that some of you guys want to see on Blurst.
Also, I’ll be making some Jetpack Brontosaurus wallpapers later this week. If there’s wallpaper from another game you really want, drop into the webcam chat and let me know. I’ve also got a really cool Blurst-related project I’ll be rocking out at some point, so stay tuned. As if all of this wasn’t enough, I might have a guest at some point as well…this week is going to be really fun! *sick high five*
Let’s face it; there’s nothing you want more in the whole world than Time Donkey Wallpapers. So here they are, courtesy of your jovial Uncle Blurst.
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This is what happens when you have amazing people help you with your amazing projects. One Mr. Cory Robinson, a local game artist, good personal friend of ours, and all-around-super-talented-guy helped us out with some illustration work. In order to make the Time Donkey menu scene come to life I needed some promotional nonsense (product photos, discount alerts, beverage list) to surround the functional menu elements (game logo, the “play game” button, the “change username” button) and Cory delivered. While it ended up completely appropriate in the context of the title scene you don’t see it very well when it’s all said and done so here it is in detail.
Keep in mind that when I tasked him with this my instructions were very vague; crappy fast food menu with ridiculous products on it. He reached into the swirling neon vortex of his brain and created all of these products and their names, going off of Flashbang’s “Num Nums Raptor Taco” inside joke from back in the day and nothing else. When we looked at it for the first time we all cried from the laughter, and also from Matthew hitting us with a car antenna. Enjoy!
It’s a pleasure to formally announce that Time Donkey is the next Blurst game! As most of you know, it started out as a small prototype Steve made a couple months back. His initial vision was far more cartoon inspired than it was realistically inspired, which struck a personal chord with me as my natural preferences for game aesthetics are along these lines. Steve ended up taking care of (what I perceive to be) the natural first step and established the influences. He told me wants it to resemble both Wind Waker on the Gamecube and a personal project I had worked on previously. We also ended up having a useful conversation about the vibrant and stylized platformers of recent years, i.e. Jak And Daxter, Ratchet & Clank, Prince Of Persia, etc.
In order to clearly communicate how I thought it should look to the rest of the team, I formally narrowed it down to three specific influences: Windwaker on Gamecube, Zack And Wiki on Wii, and Lost Winds on WiiWare.
Zack And Wiki on Wii is a great product to look at right now not only because it’s modern, but it’s a great example of how to super-saturate everything and still look really neat. The plant life is particularly inspiring because it’s abundant, charming, and stands out on top of the ground it’s all buried in. The only thing working against Zack And Wiki is that the overall spectrum of color is so varied that it can get quite over stimulating. Not always, but enough so that I found it distracting. In any case, it’s a great looking product that helped me calibrate our color usage.
Lost Winds on WiiWare is a fantastic looking 3d sidescroller in the vein of Zack And Wiki. It’s another very useful example of a modern platformer covered in sexy. Generally speaking, I found the Lost Winds palette a little more digestable than Zack And Wiki’s. The color spectrum (per area) is a much closer together but the game still manages to be vibrant. Ultimately, Lost Winds helped me further calibrate our color usage and on top of that, helped me calibrate our amount of textural detail; Lost Winds has a little bit more texture detail than we want.
Wind Waker on GameCube. Ahhh, sweet sweet Wind Waker. As far as I’m concerned, one of the most successful attempts at making a game look like a traditional piece of cartoon animation, plus a whole lot more. The thing that has always stuck out to me the most about Wind Waker is its inherent harmony. Nothing really fights with each other and nothing is so saturated it pressurizes your eyeballs. Both the HUD and the characters are distinguishable from the environment without looking out of place. It’s still more saturated than most games, but its range of saturation is small enough to keep everything held together. I find it particularly interesting that no individual object has a ton of contrast and does not contain more than 2 or 3 major color values. At the end of the day I feel this is the primary distinguishing attribute of the Wind Waker’s aesthetic, which is probably why it achieves the harmony it does. It’s much easier to make a modest handful of colors look good next to each other than it is to make, I dunno, the 600 colors on screen in most games. ;)
Furthermore, we’ve been using a dedicated concept artist on this project. He’s a local artist named Justin Messner who’s been spending a couple days a week with us creating the kind of really cool images we don’t normally have the time to create ourselves. So far it’s worked out really great and his imagery has been helpful and inspiring. Here’s one of his pieces!
That’s all for now; we’ll start offloading more art as things become more developed. So far everything is coming together really well and I think we’ve got something more refined than anything you’ve seen from us before…
Hellooooooo, children! Not a whole lot going in post apocalyptia these days. But I did make these sweet Crane Wars wallpapers for you. It’s got the logo in it and EVERYTHING.1024×768 1152×864 1280×800 1280×1024 1440×900
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Hope you’re liking Crane Wars! And now…some MUSIC!
Hi! I wanted to talk a little bit about the art of Paper Moon as we wrap it up, and to give you all a little insight into its interesting collaborative history. First and foremost, Paper Moon started out as a stereoscopic game to be submitted into the Gamma 3d event from 2008. So before we had even gotten our filthy hands on it, it was already filled to the brim with wonderful artwork created by Infinite Ammo cats along with Adam Saltsman (also a friend of ours, and a legendary pleasure to work with). Here’s some of the amazing art he did for the initial iteration of the game:
Our plan for Paper Moon was simply to supplement what was already there. Create some more assets, expand the levels, and make it compatible with the Blurst leaderboards and achievement system. The end product ended up being very much the original product it was with the addition of a new level and some new twists and turns.
What excited me the most about getting to work on Paper Moon was that in order to create more assets, I would simply be creating the kind of traditional ink-heavy art I already make all the time. It would be hard to make it appear as if 3 different artists worked on this game, and as far as we’re concerned, that’s a good thing. What I specifically ended up doing (in addition to creating more environmental art) was making cool particle effects, populating the world with more hotness, and performing some rudimentary design work like moving things around and massaging item placement. It ended up being a TON of fun, and I feel like I added onto something that was already beautiful in the first place. Here’s a photo I took of some of the new art I made.
Both Adam and I took sharpies, drew on copy paper, scanned into Photoshop, and touched up from there. Hope you enjoy!
I’ve had a bunch of people both on and offline ask for wallpapers so here you go! There’s two different images, a screenshot and a logo, and I made them in a handful of sizes.640×480 800×600 1024×768 1152×864 1280×960 1600×1200 640×480 800×600 1024×768 1152×864 1280×960 1600×1200
Click to the link underneath the images to view in the browser. You can save it to your computer from there or you can right click the link and save it from there. Enjoy!
I did this partially for my own entertainment, but mostly for those of you who want to scrutinize cartographical reference when exploring new and uncharted areas so you can exploit their vast riches. Oh, and also because there have been some arguments on whether or not the game world is big or not. Now you can immaculately measure it for yourself in the unit type of your choice!
Do with this what you will, but remember who loves you. And if you’re going to construct elaborate Blush fan fiction and use this image in the introduction to the limited edition hard cover version you inevitably make, please let us know.
It’s been spoken of here and there in darker corners, but I thought I would give it a formal mention. You can head over to Danny B’s website to download the beautiful pieces of music he wrote for Blush. For FREE, even! It’s like there is some sort of inherent benefit in giving away your creations to people who will appreciate them!
Minotaur China Shop iPad Tease
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Minotaur Dance Party
1126 days ago
Visualizing Raptor Safari Data
1149 days ago