- Poker Night 2, reviewed
- When did Indy become a cult game series?
- The Cave, reviewed.
- No Time Left, reviewed.
Ex-LucasArts employee Doug Smith shared a game and the story behind it on reddit.
He's been working nights and weekends on a game for his three year old daughter who likes trains and bugs, and decided to put it up on iTunes for $1.99 USD. Called ChuggaBugga, it's a game for children about a train full of bugs hauling four boxcars. Kids can poke the various interactive elements, and watch the bugs have fun on the items found on the various box cars.Doug said he's encouraged by the support he's gotten from the game so far, and it has been a silver lining to his LucasArts troubles.
Telltale has made available another Poker Night 2 video. This one focuses on the various things you can unlock, from changing the look of The Inventory to various items for games like Borderlands 2 and Team Fortress 2.
Our favourite grumpy video game creator has written up a post about this possibility right over here.
Update: Chuck Jordan, credited as a script writer and designer of Curse of Monkey Island (the real or fake Monkey Island 3 depending on your point of view), countered with a tweet:
“No disrespect to the talented teams involved, but I’ma spend 15 years talking about how I could’ve done better than them.” #3a #neverforget
And so it goes.
Update 2: Ron responded to the criticism by offering some clarification:
“When I said "but I'd want to pick up where I left off. Free of baggage. In a carnival.", I meant the very literally. My story for Monkey Island 3a takes places 2 minutes after the end of Monkey Island 2. Free of baggage was not meant to imply that I felt Curse of Monkey Island was "baggage", but rather, as I (hypothetically) designed and (hypothetically) wrote Monkey Island 3a, I'd want to be free to take the story where I wanted it to go and not feel compelled to adhere to the games that followed. If I end up being able to make this game at some point, we all might find that it fits nicely in between Monkey Island 2 and Curse of Monkey Island.”
Music and sound FX are still inprogress for our animated video. Pedro says he will be done this week. So looks like April 24-ish will be the soonest we can start the Kick Starter Campaign. Working on rewards, budget and web page today. Custom puppets are out. sorry. The puppet makers said they couldn't do it. :(
Saying that he hopes to have the awards for the AVS: Year One Kickstarter "set" this week, Bill reveals via photograph what one of them will be: a physical box for the game.
Judging by his referencing the CMI box's dimensions, it looks like we're in for a classic big box as opposed to the modern miniature flavor, a resort which is, needless to say, making me all sensitive beneath the skirt.
There's been lots of reports about LucasArt's demise, but here are a few you may have missed:
- The PA Report on the human side
- Former LucasArts employee Jesse Harlin posts a eulogy on Facebook
- A photo essay by Joel Aron, showing LucasArts staff on one of their final days
- A BBC News article on LucasArts' closure, focusing on The Secret of Monkey Island (thanks to Michael Smith for the tip)
I'm sure there's many more out there -- so if you know of any more good ones please post them in the comments.
Also, we're planning to make a LucasArts Memorial podcast. Please e-mail comments, thoughts, memories etc. to podcast [at] mixnmojo.com either as a sound file or a text message! If it's a sound file we will include it directly in the podcast. Thanks.
The issue also reveals more of the "Fables" that we'll be encountering in the game. There's the ones we already know: Bigby Wolf (the big bad wolf), who's the sheriff of Fabletown, and the person we'll be controlling, Mr. Toad (who is a carjacking thief, and who is able to keep himself and his family in human form to keep from getting sent to the farm), one of the three little pigs (named Colin, the one who built his house out of straw, is a professional mooch who lives on the farm with his cousins, but sneaks into the city since he's bored with farm life). There's also Ichabod Crane (deputy mayor of Fabletown for nearly 115 years), Snow White (the assistant to the deputy mayor of Fabletown) Beauty and the Beast (she's dependent on him (but is still said to have genuine care and concern for him), and he works two and a half jobs in order to keep up their lavish lifestyle now that they don't have servants), and Buffin (a talking, winged monkey from the land of Oz who is Fabletown's librarian, and prone to mischief).
There's some more information on how Telltale has evolved the gameplay from The Walking Dead as well. The action has improved. It will still be motivated by the game's narrative, and it will still be presented in a cinematic style, but players will have more control over the action (which in this game involve bigby throwing punches). And since Bigby is a Fable, the action will be more over the top than The Walking Dead since Bigby can take more punches than Lee ever could (and the amount of damage you take is shown in your appearance, and is noticed by the other characters in the game). There will still be quick time events (involving Bigby making a decision in the middle of a fight to decide the game's outcome). However, it seems the QTE's this time will be just the decision making ones and not the button pressing ones.
The relationship building in The Walking Dead will also be expanded in The Wolf Among Us, as it's said to contain a lot more of that, and there will be a powerful emotional connection to the characters like Telltale did with The Walking Dead.
As Telltale has said before, you'll be able to choose what decisions to make like The Walking Dead. The Wolf Among Us will also have the opportunity to choose when to go to different locations, making the events unfold in different ways. Two events will happen at the same time, and the other event will still unfold regardless of whether you've experienced it first-hand or not, giving the game an extra element of realism (and replay value).
The article touches more on Leap than the actual game, but give it a read anyway, or watch a teaser for the game here.
According to the Steam page, the game will be released on the 23rd of April. The game is also going to be coming out for XBLA on Xbox 360 and PSN on PlayStation 3, but no release dates for those platforms have yet been announced.
A lot of nostalgic sentiments about LucasArts have pervaded the web over the past few days, and perhaps we'll be acknowledging a few more of them, but you've really gotta read this gigantic and loving tribute by Gamasutra, devoted as it is entirely to the graphic adventure games, which I'm sure all of us would agree are the correct subset of the studio's catalog to center a proper eulogy around. Amidst the ongoing swirl of online LEC remembrances, it is the best piece to emerge so far.
The article is largely composed of quotes from folks throughout the industry, who recall the LEC adventures with relatable adoration and assert the influence they continue to have. Peter McConnell is among the voices, and the whole thing concludes with reflections by David Fox.
“Raven is sad to hear about the closing of LucasArts today, we respected them and enjoyed working with them over the years,” said the studio, in a statement sent to Kotaku Australia. “We wish the best for all the talented people who were let go and hope they find good work in studios in the industry.
“We loved and appreciated the experience of getting to make Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy for LucasArts. As a gift to the persistently loyal fanbase for our Jedi games and in memory of LucasArts, we are releasing the source code for both games for people to enjoy and play with.
Sad day today, but not surprising, you had to see that coming. I was employee #9 at Lucasfilm Games.
Look like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.
Aw. Sad, but not unexpected. LEC is survived by countless children and grandchildren in the industry. Good things were done.
Yes of course I'm heartbroken. I wanted the Phoenix. So many great people, even after us. Thinking of my family there with love.
Disney has shut down LucasArts and canceled any game in development.
“After evaluating our position in the games market, we’ve decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model, minimizing the company’s risk while achieving a broader portfolio of quality Star Wars games," LucasArts parent company LucasFilm said in a statement. "As a result of this change, we’ve had layoffs across the organization. We are incredibly appreciative and proud of the talented teams who have been developing our new titles.”
We all saw this coming, but it's a bit sadder than I would like to admit.
Not so long ago, Hardcore Gaming 101 launched a terrific feature dedicated to Zombies Ate My Neighbors and its sequel, Ghoul Patrol. Because the two-part extravaganza is larded with quotes from Mike Ebert and Kalani Streicher (the games' respective project leaders), loads of great behind-the-scenes information is incorporated.
One such tidbit is that at one point LEC alumnus Dean Sharpe tried his darndest to get LEC to bless a GBA port of the original game. This heartfelt petition culminated in the predictable nothing at all, enabling LEC to dodge a dreaded Somebody Might Accidentally Still Like Us bullet.
Speaking of this franchise, do you know what's become of that Zombies Ate My Neighbors movie that was supposedly being written by this guy? No, I'm really asking you.
Now does that give you pause? When you look at Monkey Island, which is a very interesting case where you’re working with a familiar IP in the realm of gaming. It’s not a comic book or a TV series, it’s a classic game. The news came out a few years ago that you had the license for King’s Quest. Do you re-think how you approach that or whether or not you do something like that when it sort of represents… a step away from the Telltale voice?
I think there’s an expectation that comes with the classic stuff that puts us in kind of a no-win position where we’re going to disappoint on some level if we don’t stay true to the roots there. Right now we’re in a place where we’re really pushing in a new direction. I think there’s a possibility to be back in that space and modernize some of the older franchises still, but right now our focus is certainly The Walking Dead and Fables: The Wolf Among Us. They’re taking up a lot of our mental bandwidth. What we do next is still something we’re working on, but I think we’re going to have some very cool, future-looking announcements. I think ‘modern’ is kind of the key word. Bringing stuff forward from the past, that’s not a huge focus for us right now.
It certainly seems like Telltale wants the expectation that they're here to revive old adventure IP to be disposed of. Arguably, with the all-but-officially-announced cancellation of their King's Quest take, Tales of Monkey Island was their only true example of that (Sam & Max was the rejuvenation of a franchise as a whole, not specifically a PC graphic adventure) so Dan's comments don't signal the abandonment of roots some will surely insist they do.
In fact The Walking Dead was very much the culmination of an evolution you can cleary see from Out from Boneville on. Sure, it perfected a balance such that it resonated with players more so than any previous release, but anyone intimately familiar with the company's whole catalog would identify it as the latest phase of what has been a fairly natural evolution. Considering that evolution has almost always been in the direction of improvement, it's hard for me not to get stoked about the company's next projects regardless of my familiarity with the property.
I will say this though, the company's grand success is making the fact that Puzzle Agent remains their only entry in the non-licensing experiment more and more difficult to justify.
Something along those lines, at least.
Shacknews brings word Activision now wants to reboot King's Quest all by themselves.
"I talked to the guys at Activision and they were like, 'No, we're pulling it because we're going to do it ourselves,'" Trowe said.
We can only hope it'll be as good as Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude. Thanks to reader Tom Sweeney for the news.Update by Jason: Telltale confirms, making it official.
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