joe bain

Fish Flush (GGJ 2019)

2 years ago

Last weekend I took part in the Global Game Jam, at the Glasgow venue hosted by Glasgow Caledonian University. I worked with 4 other people, a mixture of experience, with some new to working on games, and some with a few years behind them. It was great fun though, and pretty tiring! We put together a proc-gen endless runner style game. You are a fish that got flushed down the loo and now you're on a journey home. Maybe. We sort of lost sight of the theme.

You can download our entry here.

Hunter's Sorrow

3 years ago

A few weeks ago I took part in the 7 Day FPS jam. I wanted to explore an idea I had a while ago around deer hunting in Scotland. It was partly inspired by this wonderful article by Cal Flyn and partly by one of my favourite books - The Old Man and The Sea by Ernest Hemmingway. I wanted to try to explore some of the real drama and pain caused by killing a living thing. As in The Old Man and The Sea, finding and capturing the animal is only half the battle and the real struggle comes as you must bring your trophy home.

I took some creative liberties by reintroducing wolves into the Scottish Highlands, as the game needed some threat to the player. I also made use of some great open-licensed models and music, all of which are credited in the game. No jam game will ever be perfect, and I think the major fault of Hunter's Sorrow is the size of the landscape. The default Gaia setting of 2km square was much too big and means that it is very easy for the player to get lost and miss crucial bits of instruction and story, as this delightfully patient let's-player did.

Lastly the name of the game. I was recently on a stag do, we were not hunting stags but we were clay pigeon shooting, and one of the more experienced shooters told me that he had been deer hunting before. He said that the first time you kill something as large as a deer, with those big mammalian eyes, you can find yourself staring into them and realising the deepest regret and sadness. There is a common name for this feeling, apparently shared by so many after their first kill and that is "hunter's sorrow."

You can download the game for Windows from here.

Lambchild Superstar

3 years ago

A project I've been working on for the last 8 months recently got it's premiere at Tribeca Film Festival. Very exciting stuff! It's a VR experience where players can collaborate to make pop music using a set of unique animal-based instruments. Wired have a lovely write up if you'd like to find out more. It should be in the Oculus store later this summer.

Yucatan at EGX

4 years ago

Last weekend I had the pleasure of showing Yucatan at the Leftfield collection at EGX. EGX is the biggest video games show in London, they had 80,000 attendees this year! It was a very busy 4 days, and hundreds of people played my game. I had great feedback, lots of things to improve for sure, but I feel really validated that the game is fun and has something unique to offer.

I'm going to spend the next few weeks fixing a few bugs in the demo so that I can release it publicly. Hopefully you should see one or two articles about the game over the next couple of weeks. It was already spoken about in the Indie Credible podcast where they said some very nice things.

Hotdog Challenge

5 years ago

Recently, I was asked to produce an HTML game that could run on a card payment terminal. I put together a simple stacking game in which you have to balance hotdogs on top of each other. If you get 20 hotdogs high then the terminal will print off a voucher for a free dessert.

The game was entered into a competition run by terminal maker Ingenico, where it won second prize. You can play the game in your browser here, although you won't win any dessert I'm afraid.

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