Indie Prize at Casual Connect 2017 in Berlin

By | Event, Heart of Scrap | 2 Comments

 

In late December’16 we had been invited with Heart of Scrap to participate in the Indie Prize competition at Casual Connect in Berlin. For us this was a chance to showcase Heart of Scrap in its current state (which is still the gamescom version since all of us switched to working on Pressure Overdrive) and get good feedback while meeting lots of cool game devs. This was our second time at an Indie Prize. Last year we’ve been in Amsterdam and had a great time showing Cosmonautica.

So two weeks ago Dominik and I packed up our things and took a train to Berlin. Next to a 6 hour train ride and a bit of bus driving afterwards we checked in at the hostel “Three Little Pigs”, which was quite nice and in walking distance of the most locations we needed to go to.

After checking in we still had some to time to attend the badge pick up party on the day before the event started. So went there, picked up our stuff and had some drinks. We met some colleagues and then went on and met a friend to have some burgers.

The Location at “Station Berlin” had a really cool industrial flair to it and had lots of space. It is like the name indicates an old train station which is now used for events. The Indie Prize with about 120 game developers from all over the world was at the center of the event, but it could have needed more space between the table rows.

We’ve met and talked to lots of awesome game devs and played some really great games. Due to the sheer number of teams at the Indie Prize it was impossible to play everything, but we made sure to at least take a look at pretty much all games.

Here’s small list of great games we really liked:

  • Heart. Papers. Border. (Jovian Industries)
  • Hacktag (Piece of Cake Studios)
  • Ary and the Secret of Seasons (Exiin)
  • Pawarumi (Manufacture43)
  • Blown Away (Black Pants Studio)
  • Black: The Fall (Sand Sailor Studio)
  • The Hanged Man (Sick & Silly Entertainment)
  • SoulReapers (Shadow Masters Games)
  • Immortal Redneck (CremaGames)

For all the 120 magnificent games please visit: http://indieprize.org/berlin2017/

The evenings were filled with nice event parties hosted by some of the sponsors, but most of the time we went for dinner with friends and colleagues. If you’re in Berlin and are around Kottbusser Tor make sure to visit “Die Schwarze Heidi”. This Swiss restaurant has crazy good cheese fondue and great Swiss beers and meals. https://www.facebook.com/SchwarzeHeidiBerlin/

On the last day at Casual Connect Europe 2017 the 17th Indie Prize Awards were held. Here are the 10 categories with their respective winners:

  • Best Game Design: Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun by Mimimi Productions
  • Best VR Game: Anshar Wars 2 by Ozwe Games
  • Most Innivative Game: FRU by Through Games
  • Best Game Audio: Blink by Die von Sureksu
  • Best Game Art: Figment by Bedtime Digital Games
  • Best Game Narrative: Empathy by Pixel Night
  • Best Multiplayer Game: Lightfield by Lost in the Garden
  • Best Kids and Family Game: Blink and Die by Suresku
  • Best Mobile Game: Super Pet Hero by Amused Sloth
  • Best in Show – Audience Choice: CoverFire by 1MBand

More impressions from the event:

And once again, the world jammed – GGJ 2017

By | Event, Jam, Studio | No Comments

Hey everyone, we’re back! Global Game Jam 2017 in Stuttgart has been a fantastic weekend, with almost 70 jammers creating 14 games. Be sure to check out the projects. In case you are particularly interested in what the Carrots have done, you can play our games online. Have fun!


Pukey Boat


Ace Of Waves

Btw, for those who want to get some impressions how the jammers spent their time, have a look…












Last but not least, a huge Thank You to SAE Institute Stuttgart and to our participants. It’s been a great time with you folks and we’re looking forward to jam with you next year. Cheers!

Freespawn-2

By | Pressure, Random | No Comments

After a shy start, Freespawn is back with another three games that caught my attention. This time I only focused on itch.io, since there’s so much good stuff to find. But for the next issue, I’m going to go for other sources. By the way, if you have a free game to contribute, self-made or stumbled-across, drop me a line.

Cheers, Patrick T.

 

SURF SHOGUN

wuhg3h

This neat jam-game by Farmergnome has everything to either wave you away for a couple minutes at lunchbreak, or let up to four players on the couch surf together for an hour or two. Once you got the feel of the simple mechanic, it’s just swell. Surf Shogun has a flow of its own. Take it on, and don’t let the Surf Ninjas rule the world! Get it here.

STREETS OF ROGUE

w08nyl

From the Steam Page: The world’s only RPG roguelike action stealth shooter brawler co-op megagame. It’s like Nuclear Throne meets Deus Ex. That nail’s it. Streets of Rogue is really clever, deep, and has a nice sense of humor. This is the free alpha, featuring character classes like Comedian, Ninja or Werewolf, a procedurally generated city, and a 2-player mode. Don’t miss it.

OTTOPUNK

Ottopunk

In less than 10 days chkkll created this sandy jump’n’dash for the GBjam. While it treats your eyes and ears (if you are into that style), it can and will hurt your fingers. Ottopunk is not easy. It’s like Sindbad on speed. You will die often, but at least you get to spawn at that disco dude’s tent. He’s cool. See yourself.

Destructible canyon rocks

By | Development, Heart of Scrap | No Comments

Our artist Chantal made some beautiful looking rocks for the Heart of Scrap jungle environment. Here is a little insight on how she approached the visible destruction patterns on those rocks:

rockoverview

“Destructible obstacles are basic elements of a Heart of Scrap battle arena. For the first setting, the misty jungle, the arena layout is formed by canyon rocks. In order to make edges after destruction more realistic, extra geometry is built that adapts to the crucial edges like tape and is visible as soon as the edge of the rock is exposed. The texture on this geometry has a solid colored, irregular stripe in the middle and fades into an alpha channel to both sides. On top of that a stonelike normal map is used to give the now smoothed edge a rough look.”

rockedge

We hope you enjoy these posts with insights from our current developments. What do you think and what you would like to read more of on our blog?

Have a great weekend 🙂

Freespawn-1

By | Games, Random | No Comments

As of late, I’ve discovered a special interest in free games. Not ‘free to play’, but free as in ‘created just for the sake of it’. I think such games have a different quality to them. Like a footprint. No external motivation, other than the itch to experiment, to share a thought, or for the mere fun of it. Another thing is: most of free games are rather short. You can easily enjoy them in one session, which is good for people like me. My attention span and/or time management tends to be jumpy.

There are a lot of great free games out there, and I’m just about to start digging deeper. Since I’d like to share what I find, feel free to follow this new and exclusive Carrotflix Series (with undefined frequency, plus a name that may change (since names are very important to me)).

Hope you enjoy episode 1.

Cheers, Patrick T.

ROGUELIGHT

x0tepg

Already heard about Roguelight? Good. Because the game’s really good, too. Light has been cleverly implemented in this minimalistic rogue-like. And if you happen to like arrows, you should give ROGUELIGHT a try: https://managore.itch.io/roguelight

ENDING

unbenannt

A ‘things-change-when-you-move’ puzzle game. Slash dungeon brawler of sorts. Very minimalistic, I like that. Download ENDING at https://st33d.itch.io/ending

BERNBAND

unbenannt

Is this a game? You just walk around. But it’s worth playing, since there are quite a bunch of curious moments and scenes to encounter in BERNBAND: http://gamejolt.com/games/bernband/34864

 

Developing a thermography shader #3

By | Development, Heart of Scrap | No Comments

Hello again, it’s a meeeee Thermo-Man 😛

I made a mistake! I assumed, the shader creation would be easy, that i just have to calculate the distance from a BattleBlock center to its extends and map a nice color onto it. And boy, it was easy and fast. But then i realised, that this will work only for more or less cubic blocks. But what’s with the other blocks? Like laserguns with their 3×1 layout? My shader didn’t really handle that very well…

mistake

So my next idea was to generate a kind of heatmap for each block. I went into 3dsmax and used a combination of AO Baking with inverted normals and a little amount of manual vertex color painting. Mapped as before with a nice color gradient, the result looks like this:

thermo1

An important part of the whole shader is, that the player can easily tell which block is hotter than others. So i implemented a little value crop/remap feature into the shader, which makes sure only a distinct color range (+-20%) is shown on one block. Here’s how it looks, if i enter heat values from 0 to 1:

animation_heat

And here’s the shader: carrots heatmapshader

thermo_shader

Cheers, have a nice weekend!

Patrick

Developing a thermography shader #2

By | Development, Heart of Scrap | No Comments

Hello again!

This time i’m diving deeper into the heatmap look development. To be able to easily distinguish your Battleconstruct form the background, i decided to go with 2 seperate shaders. One heightmap based for the level and one distance based for the BattleBlocks. Just made a quick photoshop mockup of how the viewmode would look inside the game:

heatmap_ps

In the upper left corner you can see the new viewmode toggle button to switch between different modes (eg. normal, heat, energy, hull integrity).

Next will be the shader creation in unity. Stay tuned 🙂

Cheers,

Patrick

Developing a thermography shader #1

By | Development, Heart of Scrap | No Comments

Hey there,

my name is Patrick. I’m one of the artists here @ chasing carrots an currently i’m working on a thermography shader for HoS (Heart of Scrap). The idea behind this is, to give the player a quick and familiar overview over the heat-distribution of his BattleConstruct.

I’m aiming for something like this:

My first idea would be a distance based shader. The further away a pixel is from the center of an object, the darker it will be rendered. Then i map some nice colors over this gradient. Voila: Not that bad for the first shot:

heat_firsttry

Next steps will be: Develop this look further in the context of the game (with UI, environment and everything), then creating a realtime shader which can reproduce the look in an acceptable render speed.

Stay tuned…