Monday, December 5, 2016

Mutant Mudds Double Pack - PSN Exclusive!

Mutant Mudds Double Pack!

I am delighted to announce that we have partnered up with our pals at Nighthawk to create a very special muddy bundle coming soon to PlayStation! For the first time ever, Sony players will be able to get their hands on our all-new Muddy sequel, Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, as well as the award-winning game that kicked off the whole muddy invasion on PS3 and PSVita in 2013: Mutant Mudds Deluxe. That’s right! You get both games for the price of one, marking the arrival of the classic Mutant Mudds Deluxe for PS4 on December 6, 2016. The Mutant Mudds Double Pack will be available for a limited time only, so act promptly to take advantage of this very muddy offer. Coming to PS4 and PSVita!

You know something that’s really cool about this offer? Not only do you get to save a ton of money, you also have the perfect tools to become the ultimate masher of muddiness. How so? Well, some folks find the difficulty of the sequel, Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, a real slap in the face without prior experience of the first game, whereas veterans of the original are frothing at the mouth for moar spikes! So, if this is your first time battling the mucky mutants, you can start your adventure with the original game, Mutant Mudds Deluxe, to hone your skills before bringing the pain to the deplorable dirt bags in Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, which includes six epic boss encounters that are sure to test your mettle!

While you count the seconds until this very special bundle is available, please take a journey with me down muddy memory lane…

It all started in 2011. We were busy working during the day on projects with publishing partners, while in the evenings we were working on our passion project. At the time we didn’t even have a name for the game. We just knew we wanted to make a fun and solid platforming experience that captured what we loved about the NES and SNES era of gaming.

One of the first features we got working in Mutant Mudds was the ability to leap between three playfields via launch pads, taking you far into the background or close-up in the foreground. I remember when we finally got this working in the game, and it blew me away. I’d always wanted to jump into the background. To create this effect, it took a combination of many things. First off, we displayed the far background at a much higher resolution than the other layers, and from there we scaled up everything 200% to create the middle playfield. The foreground layer was scaled up 300% from the background source.

Next, we applied a distance tint or fog effect to the background to push it back a bit. In the foreground we created a silhouette effect by having all of the platform art transition to black. And the final touch that really established the sense of depth came from a focus effect that blurred the layers slightly based on the player’s location. If the player was in the middle layer, both the background and foreground would be slightly blurred. When the player leapt into the background, the middle layer became slightly blurred and the foreground got even more blurred. I hope you agree that the final results work pretty well to create a fun and unique setting.

To create a sense of progression across the game and also ramp up the challenge gradually, I spent a great deal of time categorizing the different types of challenge ingredients that we created for the game and listing them in order from easy to difficult. This included not only enemies and hazards, but also small jump, long jump, crouch to avoid projectile, and many other details of the player experience. I then created a table that listed all of the challenge ingredients and all of the levels, adding a checkmark where each element was introduced first to the player. This enabled me to craft a few things. It helped me set a gradual difficulty curve throughout all of the levels in the game, and also ensure new elements were introduced to the player over the course of their experience to keep things interesting. It is this aspect that makes the original game a great primer before jumping into the sequel. The sequel is quite different in this regard!

When it came time to create a sequel to Mutant Mudds we immediately thought of the Lost Levels from the Super Mario Bros. series. The Lost Levels was the official sequel to Super Mario Bros., released in Japan. However, it was deemed too challenging for North America at the time and was replaced by a different “Super Mario Bros. 2” in the form of an adaptation of Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic.

We loved the idea of what Lost Levels set out to do: give fans of the original game a literal continuation of the first experience with increased difficulty. Even though that was the seed of the idea for Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, we also took the opportunity to add a ton of new content that we felt would improve the overall experience, such as boss encounters, all-new level art themes and music, secret passageways, new pick-ups, 20 hidden playable characters, and unlockable soundtrack (featuring over 40 tunes)!

The biggest difference with Mutant Mudds Super Challenge is the fact that there really is no difficulty curve. It starts out hard, and continues to be hard. Even the intro levels pulls no punches. You may die. A lot. We added a handy death counter so you can keep track of your failures. Yeah, sorry about that. To counter that slap in the face, you’re able to visit any of the levels in the main worlds from the beginning. So, if a particular level is giving you a hard time, you can visit a different level and come back at a later time with a fresh perspective.

Something that makes our job so satisfying is when we hear positive feedback from players who are enjoying our games. It is truly a magical thing. One of the biggest highlights for me was when Shuhei Yoshida tweeted out his Muddy progress from a flight he was taking from US to Japan. When the President of Worldwide Studios, Sony Interactive Entertainment shares his enjoyment of your game, you’re having a great day! When Mutant Mudds Super Challenge released on Vita, he even went on to say it was a sequel to his “favorite action platformer.” We love you Yosp!

Thank you all for your support. I hope you enjoy the special bundle we have put together for you. Please share your experience with me on twitter. You can find me here: Peace!

North America