Philly Dev Night talk!

Cape Town, super friendship arcade, Talks, Team Lazerbeam

Tomorrow night I’ll be speaking at Philly Dev Night, the weekly meet up for Philly’s game-making community. I’m currently in town visiting some of my dear music-making friends, and figured I should totally see what’s happening in the city in terms of game development. I’m really looking forward to meeting some of the city’s local developers and sharing some stories about the exciting things happening in Cape Town.

Ben alt games poster

I’ll be chatting about Super Friendship Arcade, and the experimental events we’ve been putting together, as well as the endeavors of my alternative game band, Team Lazerbeam. The night’s happening at the Philly Game Forge, kicks off at 7PM and I’ll be up at 8!

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SF <3s SK: Cross-continental Alt Game Romance!

Cape Town, Community, events, Local Multiplayer, super friendship arcade

A couple weeks back the gang and I got busy with Louis Roots – head honcho of Australian gamer punk collective SK Games. As the first stop on his international tour of alternative gaming communities, Cape Town welcomed Louis with a Super Friendship Arcade where we joined forces and brought people together for a night of custom controllers, weird games and high fives.
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The night was documented by Jamie-Dimitra Ashton. Her pictures speak volumes about our ramshackle arcade, the wonderful people that filled it and the awe and joy shared during the night. For me, having worked pretty tirelessly over the course of the night, it’s pretty damn incredible seeing the impact of our endeavors on these faces.
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While I think Jamie’s pics tell you most everything you need to know about how this night went, I will mention a couple of observations:

1) It was super lame not having SFA dad, Peter-Cardwell Gardner there.
2) Seeing Louis in action was a true inspiration. He’s a proper wizard.
3) Louis seemed pretty damn stoked on what we’re doing. Yay Cape Town!
4) We wanna collab with more kindred spirits from abroad.
5) Tiny toy whales make for great controllers.
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I’ll do a proper post on it soon, but if you didn’t know, we’re bringing our game punk circus to Joburg, and it’s gonna be magic!
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Mehrgerzerd-sized high-fives to Jamie for the fantastic pics! Check out more of her great work here and read about her time at the party here!

Event: SFA <3s SK!

Cape Town, Community, events, Illustration, Local Multiplayer, super friendship arcade

South Africa’s favourite alternative gaming super-party is back and do we ever have an awesome surprise for you!

The Super Friendship Arcade gang are ecstatic to announce a special, one of a kind event happening on Friday the 31st at The Manila Bar. “What happening?” you ask, staring at a team of koala bears riding a roaring lion? Well, for this next event we’ll be joining forces with none other than Backyard.sk!
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Hailing from Perth, Australia, SK Games have toured their home country, breaking boundaries and bending minds with an ever changing array of incredible custom-built controllers and the best in underground local-multiplayer games. Now, SK Games are bring their game-punk antics to the rest of The World, on an international tour called “Around The World in 80 Games”!

We are so happy to have SK visiting Cape Town as the first stop of this world tour! What’s more, we couldn’t be more stoked to be teaming up with our Australian friends in bringing you a one of a kind night that will see SFA and SK controllers and games smashed together in an orgy of buttons, pixels and high fives!

Our lineup! For the night!

Catnips – AUS
Evan Greenwood’s Magnetic Assholes – SA
World’s Fastest Super Pizza – AUS
Raptor Polo – SA
Regular Human Basketball – AUS
Physics Cricket – SA
Super Pole Riders – DK
Cowbell Hero – SA
Seed – AUS
Feathers and Finn – SA
KRYP – SWE
Rope Jacks – AUS
Pat Cat Pat – SA
Hot Date – UK
Snow Cones – SA
Coming out Simulator – USA
Cunt Touch This – DK
Finger Twister – SA
Realistic Kissing Simulator – USA
Robo Bros – NZ
Mehrgehrzerds – SA
Hype Snake – SWE
At Dawn Draw – AUS
Fingle – NL
Super Massive Crate Dash – SA

… and many more!
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Are you gonna be able to handle all this awesome? We hope so!

Strictly no under 18s.

ROAR (like a lion)

Be excellent to each other!

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SFA 2 Players 2 Buttons Jam!

events, jams, super friendship arcade

Super Friendship Arcade, South Africa’s favourite alternative video game party, is gearing up for another night of smashed pixel and melted minds! Join us in preparing for our next night by jamming with us on Saturday the 11th of July!

2 button jam

The theme for this jam is: 2 players, 2 buttons! Team up with friends and make a two player game that gives each player 1 button only! All genres welcome! Custom controllers encouraged!*

There’ll be a secret ingredient in the jam, to be revealed once we’re all together on the morning of the 11th!

The jam will run from 10am till 7pm and take place at the lovely Cafe Viva so there will be no shortage of delicious food, coffee and beer! The jam will end with a short presentation, where you can show off and discuss your masterpiece or epic train smash.

We want our community to be a safe space where EVERYONE is welcome (except dicks)! Failing is just a healthy part of challenging yourself, so don’t worry if you’ve never made a game before, or don’t know anyone else. The super friends will be happy to help you out! All you need is heart!

Running order:

10AM – arrive at Cafe Viva, reveal secret ingredient, drink coffee, form teams, discuss ideas!

11AM – JAAAAAAAMMMM!

7PM – Creation presentation!

2 button banner

RSVP here!

* – If you’re the crafty type, please feel free to start working on controllers before the jam. If you’re not, don’t worry, we’ll have some fun creations that everyone is welcome to use for their games!

Trailer Maker: Desktop Dungeons: Enhanced Edition

Cool Your Jets, Desktop Duneons, Goat, QCF Design

This is a very long overdue post, but I’m happy to finally be getting around to sharing this. Following on the Kickstarter video that Cool Your Jets made for Cadence, we were approached with a cool proposition from Cape Town game creators QCF Design. The studio was plotting the launch of an enhanced edition of their cult hit Desktop Dungeons. They wanted us to make a trailer it.

DD Trailer delivery_00692Being fans of the studio and the game, we were obviously really keen to take them up on this offer. Additionally, the creation of game trailers is a pretty great venture for a team of animators that want to spend their days working on games. Understandably, our response to QCF’s invitation was a very loud “hell yeah!”

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Fast forward a few weeks, and we’re right in the middle of making said trailer. The timeline is insanely tight, but with the support we’re getting from QCF the trailer is shaping up to be something very special. Working alongside the studio’s artists, Dorianne Dutrieux and Daoyi Liu, we’re able to realise the Desktop Dungeons world in an awesome, imersive way that we’re all really stoked with.

DD Trailer delivery_00561Fast forward a matter of days and the trailer’s done! Desktop Dungeons: Enhanced Edition goes live! Response to the trailer is great, and for me, it’s just awesome seeing something we made showing up on Steam.

Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 1.56.19 PMAll in all, a whirlwind project with results we were very proud of. I’m hoping we get some opportunities to make more game trailers soon. For now, here’s the debut effort in this corner of animation!

SFA Beta Lineup and promo video!

super friendship arcade

Last week a did a post lamenting my life becoming a case of way to much work and way too little play. I’m very happy to report the tides have changed since then; work has calmed down quite a bit and I’ve had some really good time to work on Saturday’s Super Friendship Arcade, and a trio of games for the night.

I’ll post more on the games soon, but for now, I thought I’d share my two latest creations for the event. First, we’ve got the lineup poster for the night:
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We’re really excited about this collection of games we’ll be showing off. It’s especially great being able to count so many “SA”s next to titles. The night is going to be a great representation of the combined efforts of developers from across SA and I look forward to there only being more local games ansd hardware to show off at future parties.

Then there’s this little sucker. I’ll let him speak for himself:


As I type this, I’m on the tail end of having worked through the night to get this video finished. Under any other circumstances I’d be feeling a little sorry for myself. However, having pulled an all-nighter for something as great as an SFA promo, I can only be filled with joy.

Super friendship Arcade Beta is going down on Saturday night at Manila Bar. If you’re able to make it through, this night might just change your life.

Snow Cones – a dessert dating-sim

Dating Sim, Ludum Dare, Snow Cones, Team Lazerbeam

Snow-cones-03I’ve been holing back on sharing this, as it’s pretty half-baked. With the exciting stuff going down over the next while, I doubt Team Lazerbeam will be baking this treat any more, any time soon, so figured I may as well put this out there.
Snow-cones-01Snow Cones was a Ludum Dare entry, jammed between Richard, Jason and I. Rich coded the whole thing, Jason played and recorded a bunch of songs with an acoustic guitar and I took lead on art (while the rest of the team all made contributions on this front).
Snow-cones-07Taking the theme of “an unconventional weapon” we focused on the idea of love as the most powerful weapon of all. The basic concept of Snow Cones (a sweet game about two icecream cones enjoying a date in the snow) is one I’ve had knocking around in my head for a year or so. I showed Rich some concept art for the idea, and, being pretty in line with the kind of emotive experiences he, Jay and I have been interested in playing with, thought it was something we should pursue.

Snow-cones-05Deciding to try make the game in 72 hours, Rich and I laid out the basic design: the player would take the role of a lonely gender-neutral icecream cone, they’d play through preparing for, and heading to a date, and then be presented with a non-linear series of date activities, while growing closer to their love-interest.
Snow-cones-06This was a pretty ambitious concept for a 72 hour game and what’s more the jam overlapped with Jason and I finishing our trailer for Desktop Dungeons and Anja and I having an out of town wedding to attend. Needless to say I only got to spend a fraction of these 72 hours on the game. By the wee hours of Tuesday morning, with moments to go before submission, we made the call to drop all but one of the date activities. This meant many songs that were recorded, cones that were drawn and codes that were coded aren’t seen in the current build of Snow Cones. We do have every intention of integrating them when we have a chance, but for now;
Click here to play “Snow Cones: Half-frozen Edition”

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Super Friendship Arcade Beta!

super friendship arcade

The Super Friendship Arcade is back!

South Africa’s greatest video game celebration will return on Saturday the 16th of May. The third night in the SFA series, the party will see The Arcade invading a brand new home; the excellent Manila Bar.

I’ve written at some length about the immense impact these nights have had on me. I’ve also written about awesome jams and hangouts and fun times that our gang has enjoyed in preparation of this next episode of SFA. Needless to say, now that it’s finally happening, I’m stupid exited for this.

We’re busy finalising the killer lineup of games that we’ve handpicked for the night; watch this space for details. If you’re the facebooking type, head here to RSVP and invite some of your own superfriends while you’re at it. Mega-godzilla-high-fives are guaranteed!

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