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Energy Hook
June 18 - JamieFristrom

I'm drawing a line in the sand - my next update will be on Steam. Hopefully I'll have that ready before July is over - that's what my new, working schedule tells me - but the kids are almost done with school - I don't know how much that's going to slow me down!

In the meantime, after a bunch of false starts I got updated builds onto Humble that I believe aren't rubbish. Alpha 4.31, codename Mukor.

So if you can't wait for it to be on Steam, you can get it now at http://energyhookgame.com, which will include a Steam key once I've gotten it up on early access.

One of the biggest changes in the new update is the MUKOR cheat - anywhere in the menu or the game you can type MUKOR to unlock all the content. So if you're having trouble finding or getting to some of the levels, that's your key.

Here's some other stuff that made it into this build:

  • Various tutorial improvements
  • Fixed the "spawn multiple ragdolls when you eat it" bug (I'm going to miss that one)
  • Fixed the "get launched into space when you run up the edge of a building" bug (I'm going to miss that one, too)
  • Fixed some problems with the ragdoll shaders
  • Got most of the billboards and the Hall of Presidents in (if you just got me your billboard or president art in the last few weeks it's probably not in yet, though - sorry. Next update!)
  • You get trick points for 360's
  • Lots of improvements to challenge levels: calling them 'good enough to ship'
  • All the trick attack challenges have leaderboards now
  • Made it easier to step into teleporters
  • Changed order in which levels are presented and unlocked
  • Ground movement tweaking - but it's still not there yet, the curse of letting the physics drive the animation instead of the other way around: it's great for the air but not so much for the ground
  • Tweaked the unlocking system (it used to be too hard; then too easy; now it's Just Right)
  • Fixed global fog translucency issues in Misty City
  • Splash sounds when you hit water are back
  • Doesn't respawn you too close to the edge anymore (that was the worst, the endless loop of respawning and falling and respawning...)
  • Fixed crash bug going from first level to challenge levels and back (it still crashes sometimes but that's Unity's fault; I've got a bug report in)
  • Gave Grav Ship Dock an underside
  • Made it so you can do tiny-ish jumps again in charge jump mode
  • Made it so the landing sound volume is proportional to the speed you hit
That's most of them! Sounds like a lot when I list them all out like that; I've been busy!

April 30 - JamieFristrom

For those of you who can't wait for it to come on Steam, I just got a new build of the game up on Humble. (energyhookgame.com)

One of the biggest thing in this build is Rift DK2 support. Enough said, I think!

Another big thing in this build is I believe - I hope - that I'm done tweaking the character's movement parameters. I pulled back a little from the over-the-top jumps and airspeeds of the previous build, but pushed forward on the ground, making it much easier to do ground movement. You kind of drove like a truck before. It's better now. Not that the game is about spending time on the ground. (That's why I didn't notice.)

Here's my road map, going forward:

My next big goal is to get it to the point where I'm willing to call it feature-and-tweaking complete and all that is left are critical bugs. Then I'm going to call it Beta and put it on Steam Early Access.

After that, I'm going to get the Playstation versions done and ship the Playstation and Steam 1.0 versions simultaneously.

How long is that going to take? I still have almost no idea - that's why bug reports *now* are super-helpful; they help me estimate how much work I have remaining to do - but now that I've been rigorously tracking my progress for a month I can make a wild-ass guess - if my progress of the last two weeks is indicative, I'm looking at 30ish more weeks of work before it's simply ready for Early Access. But I will probably bite the bullet and punt on some things I want to do to make sure it's out this year. (I kind of want *some* income this year... :P)

Take care!

March 25 - JamieFristrom

I was in a round-table podcast[game-wisdom.com] with Tanya Short of Moon Hunters and Alix Stolzer of Legend of Dungeon. Check it out!

February 17 - JamieFristrom

We did it. We got a meaty patch up on Humble! (Go to http://energyhookgame.com if you want to play it.) That new character model and gamefeel improvements I promised are finally in.

I even made a new trailer for the first time in over a year because I feel this one's worth a little fanfare.

It is getting really close to Feature Complete. Maybe I'll have to start calling it "Beta" soon.

So check it out!

January 10 - JamieFristrom

Wondering what's going on with Energy Hook? I talk about the latest developments with Josh Bycer of Game Wisdom.[game-wisdom.com]

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