Refuting the Kickstarter House Rumors

What actually happened with the Super Retro Squad Kickstarter house?

As we move toward the Steam Early Access release of Glitch Strikers, (formerly known as Super Retro Squad), I thought it was important to refute the most prevalent rumor about the game’s development: that I used the Kickstarter money to buy a house for myself.

When the Kickstarter campaign concluded, our team was distributed around the country, so we thought we could save money by living in one location during development so that each individual would not have to pay their own rent. I contributed personal money (with the help of my parents) to help one of the team members buy a house that was big enough for all of us to live in. The address of this house was 6386 S Canterbury Rd, Parma, OH, 44129.

Take a look at the public records on Trulia (or wherever you want). The records show it was purchased on September 20, 2012 for $139,000, and it was sold again on October 21, 2016 for $135,000. If the records let you view the owner, you will see that it was not me; it was one of the other people on the team. I have never owned a house, and I currently live in an apartment that my wife and I are renting in Wisconsin.

Notice that the amount we received from the Kickstarter ($48,007 after fees) doesn’t come close to covering the cost of the house. Also, notice it was sold for less than it was purchased for. This was not done to make money; the motivation was to save money.

Personally, I lived in the house from October 2012 to April 2016. The house ended up being a terrible decision since I didn’t get back most of the money I contributed to it. Looking back, I think it would have been smarter to rent a house since we still could have saved money by each individual not having separate rent to pay. I also think renting would have been seen as less controversial, but that is not something I expected at the time.

Hopefully this puts the nonsense to rest and people can focus on the game instead of its difficult development period.

Glitch Strikers gets Greenlit!

Glitch Strikers is coming to Steam Early Access this summer.

Great news… Glitch Strikers has been approved for distribution on Steam! This means we can release the game on early access later this year.

Although the greenlight process only lasted a few days, we received a massive amount of feedback, so we will be making some changes based on what we heard.

Many people were concerned that the games shown in the trailer were too similar to existing games, so we are focusing heavily on making them more creative and original. You will see some of these changes in an upcoming gameplay trailer.

Secondly, we’ve decided that instead of releasing separate “games” and later combining them into a story mode, we will make Glitch Strikers an episodic game with the story told along the way. It is very similar to what we already announced, but the overall story of Glitch Strikers will be woven into each episode, and each episode may not necessarily focus on one game world. The episodes will follow the story of Manni and his friends as they travel across games to solve the mystery of the glitches.

Thank you so much to everyone who voted. Stay tuned for the upcoming gameplay trailer of the first episode, Hyper Manni Pals. We expect it to be ready in a few months.

Glitch Strikers Trailer and Greenlight Campaign

Glitch Strikers is announced with a trailer and Steam Greenlight campaign.

IT’S FINALLY HERE!!! You can now see what I had in mind when I launched the Super Retro Squad Kickstarter way back in June 2012. It was a lot harder to get to this point than I could have imagined, but we made it.

As you can see, the game looks amazing! Even though it took a long time and we had many difficulties, I was improving my game development skills and learning throughout all of it. However, knowing how to make a game means nothing if there’s no art or sound.

On one fortunate day, I met Matt Kap… and almost instantly, the game was back on track. HUGE thanks to Matt for using his amazing pixel art, music, and sound skills to bring this game to life. The project would still just be in my head if it wasn’t for him.

So this is huge news. Exploding Rabbit is back, and Super Retro Squad is reborn as Glitch Strikers. And as you can see, we put tons of work into this trailer. I hope you enjoy it. Please vote for the game on Steam Greenlight. We’ll try and get the first part, Hyper Manni Pals, on Early Access as soon as we can.

For more info on Glitch Strikers, check out the press kit.

Active on Youtube Again

I recently got active on Youtube again have been live streaming videos about Super Retro Crossover.

I just wanted to let you know I’m active on Youtube again, and I’ve been experimenting with live streaming. I live streamed some of the development of Super Retro Crossover (previously known as Super Retro Squad), which you can see above.

I’ve also been answering questions from fans in a new series called #ExplodingQuestions.

And the first video I did was a live stream of just talking.

It feels good to be back. Live streaming is so easy, and it feels like a natural fit for me since video has always been my preferred way to communicate. Subscribe to the Exploding Rabbit youtube channel to stay up to date.

We’re preparing a trailer and Steam Greenlight campaign that should launch within a month or so if we’re lucky. See you then!

Still Alive!

After surviving a difficult personal situation, I’m making some changes and enjoying the simple things in life.

It is my great pleasure to inform you that I am still alive. For the past few years, I have been in a very challenging personal situation; but I am finally free. As part of my celebration, I have redesigned the website to be incredibly simple. I didn’t delete all the old stuff though. Instead, I moved it over to SuperMarioBrosCrossover.com since most of it was related to Super Mario Bros. Crossover.

I am so happy to be alive, and I am thankful for the people that have helped me through this situation. I will not talk about it again, except maybe far in the future if I write a book, or make a movie or game about it, but until then… let us forget about it and look forward to new things.

I will leave you with this song you can listen to whenever you are down. Always remember… you are still alive! 😀

Game Units

Early on, you should decide on a game unit that is simple and intuitive.

When making a game, one thing you have to decide early on is what you will use as units. Having a game unit allows you to consistently express things like distances and speeds. Below, you can see the units I use for Super Retro Crossover. Since the world is split up into tiles, 1 unit is equal to 1 tile (16 pixels).

grid-with-text

Having a unit that makes sense and is easy to wrap your head around is important. For example, if I tell you that Mario’s max walk speed is 5.625 game units per second, can you imagine how fast that will be in your head? With the units I’ve chosen, it’s pretty easy. He’ll move past about 5 and a half tiles every second.

mario-max-walk-locked

Units shouldn’t always have a direct relation to pixels though. For example, one unit is equal to 16 pixels now, but if I wanted more detailed graphics, one unit might equal 32 pixels or 64 pixels. It’s generally a good idea to think of rendering as separate from the rest of the game engine.

I’m telling you all of these things because I did them wrong in Super Mario Bros. Crossover. In that game, one unit was equal to half a pixel. Look how much more confusing this is!

smbc-grid

In this case, Mario’s walk speed would be 180 game units per second. That’s a lot harder to visualize in your head. The point is, keep your game units simple and intuitive!

Sprite Flipping and SMB 1-1

Sprites can now be flipped!

sprite-flip

I implemented sprite flipping in the level editor and game engine. The image above shows flipping on hill. Those are both the same sprite.

I also built the first level of Super Mario Bros. There is a toad there because the story takes place after Mario beats Bowser, so he has freed the toads.

Speaking of that… does anyone have any ideas for how the first level would be different after Mario has beaten Bowser? So far I just have toads hanging around that you can talk to, there are no enemies, and some of the bricks and item blocks have already been hit. I was wondering if there could be anything else different to make it more interesting to go through the level. It’s important for the story that the player goes through the whole level.