André here! It’s been some time since we last gave any life sign. We’ve been strangely quiet for a group called Loud Noises, but the group members are kind of busy with their alternate jobs (the kind that gives money and pays rent…)
Last thing we said was after Headblaster launched we were working on 3 projects, one for each member of Loud Noises. Some stuff happened, and after all that we are in the end of novermber, doing the first preparations for a bigger project. We would like to reveal it when it’s got more solid material, but for now stay with these visual tests.
We don’t have any official future announcement, so we decided to open our vault to show you guys what we left on the middle of the way in this first year of Loud Noises (and maybe babble a little about our little journey).
We did Space Castaway during GGJ 2013. It’s kind of weird to look at this game now, because it’s simple and full of bugs. This game was the embryo of Loud Noises, though. By the end of 2012, I was still part of Vortex Game Studios. Although their talent cannot be denied, I was not satisfied with my responsability of working with projects I wasn’t interested in, mainly outsourcing. I had already done projects with José, Diego and Vanessa, but doing Space Castaway was a collaborative effort, mainly because the new dynamics of the group (I was programming this thing). The final result is far from perfect, but we had fun. And most important, we were able to finish it, and it gave us that liberating sensation of a mission accomplished.
It’s like Alec Holowka said once in a presentation, you can’t do collabs with anyone. Making an indie game is like being in a relationship, almost a marriage. Once you engage with a project, you have to dive in in the collab with reckless abandon.
And that was the birth of Loud Noises: 3 (sometimes 4/5) people that dove in this crazy idea of making games. Lots of people over here in Brazil name themselves ‘studios’. They gather themselves and spend energy distributing positions, making businness cards, but they forget the most important part: making games. We are just a group (gang) of developers that wants to make ‘games’, the kind we would like to see existing some way or another. Making money with it is a secondary goal and, at least for now, we can work with other stuff that pay our rents, without letting it be harmful to the (slow) development of our projects. I don’t mean it as an example to be followed, it’s more to show that there are other objectives and thoughts in the “making” of a game that don’t revolve around monetary rewards.
"Live the life of an artist, while he has to balance his economic and mental health, his freelance jobs and his personal production". This was my train of thought to the Curitiba’s Minijam, and the theme was CULTURE. The duration of the Minijam was 12 hours, and making a Game Dev Story style simulation starring artists seemed kind of crazy. BUT, against all odds, I was able to complete the programming of the game in 8 hours. Unfortunately it doesn’t have any art because José couldn’t participate on the last moment (it was a Tuesday after all! It was a normal weekday, but I used to work after midnight by this time …).
Roknar - Interdimensional Puncher
We did’nt finished this. That’s all I have to say about that. (tears)
This game was scribbled in an early 2013 afternoon, highly inspired by Super Hexagon. It was an exercise too. I wanted to do a minimalist game after discovering I was famous for elaborating complex projects and not finishing them at the time. This project was basically my first collaboration with Gregory de Bonis, and it was first planned as a web game (we even experimented FGL to see public reception and the possibility of raising some money). The music was handled by Guilherme Giacomini (you can check his Soundcloud here). Then, as a sugestion from Thais Weiller, we started porting it to mobile. You can see how far we went here:
Cor-e was a sad case of how fatal some external factors and developer flaws are, despite the effort put on the project. Cor-e was a side project to its creators, and because of that it was always done in a slow pace. Too slow of a pace. Although the basic gameplay and visuals were ready on the first two weeks, the rest of the three months revealed our problems: Greg kept playing with the code and adding useless features, while I was running in circles with the design of the waves. And I hid in my lazyness instead of adressing the problem and completing the project. The irony was when we finally went back to work on the project, we found out a game with basically the same gameplay and lookalike visuals: http://www.vividgames.com/games/GYRO_958.html. The thought of launching the game and having it labelled as a clone was a discouraging perspective…
Pack of Horrors
It was supposed to be an experimental event, a gathering of friends to make games with a horror theme, and then spread them for free. As usual, this project originated fom a talk between friends, more specifically with Amora and Santo. I showed them the Ghost Stories trailer and we argued how interesting was the idea of a group of motivated artists creating something with a common theme and launching the collective work. Amora participated on a talk on Kotaku BR where she reveals more details of this idea: http://www.kotaku.com.br/pack-of-horrors-indies-de-terror/ (portuguese only).
Just like all of my ‘shitty ideas’ (as Amora like to call them), I gathered friends and (poor) resources to make the project take off. Its was super beautiful to see everyone engaged in this project, the dialogue between the participants and the straightening of bonds. Unfortunatelly, it was a ‘cursed’ project: the theme was too complex, and we agreed on a timespan of one month to think about the game idea. This made our idea of game very complex. That is the reason the creators of the project (Loud Noises and Miniboss) weren’t able to finish their games for the Pack. Satana Condo, our game, was playable but it was far from being a fun experience, plus it had a lot of bugs. The saddest part was that Diego had a simpler and better idea, but we had no time to make it come true. Other problems appeared too, such as me ‘bending’ the event rules. We were between friends, so I judged having adaptable rules would not be a bad idea. This lead to stress and lack of communication, and to me realizing the weight of organizing such an event.
Gogo Party Engineer - Gamejolt Contest 10
After Headblaster launching and nomination on Festival de Jogos SBgames, the Loud Noises crew was distant regarding projects, mainly beause of the ammount of Jose´s and Diego’s work (which rises exponencially by the end of the year). This made room for me to start sketching a game (based on a hardcore idea Diego had). It was a mix of Simon Says with resources administration. It was at the same time as Gamejolt Contest 10, which theme was PARTY. I used this gameplay sketch to finish the game for this Compo. The other two Loud Noises were occupied, so I would have to finish this game alone.
I’ll be sincere and say I wasn’t in the right mood for making a game, even more one about party. I had (and still do) a rising worry about my economical situation. Preoccupations like this becomes phantoms, they cause torment constantly to the point of affecting your work and mood. So the week went past and, despite my efforts and even with the gameplay and visuals almost ready, the game was not satisfactory…
Yes, we left a trail of unfinished projects. Reading this list can be a little sad, but this is not true for us. We are happy, after all. We launched Headblaster and it had an extremely warm reception (we even made US$1,51 with it, yay!). The group dynamics got better, and now we understand better our flaws and abilities. We are getting better.
And… oh what-a-hell, we are officially announcing our new next project: an RPG-like turn based game super focused on battles and territorial dominance! Most importantly, there will be no grinding. It is called Knuckle Supper.