Year In Review 2013

Sorry this is a bit belated, just been catching up on some things. So wow what a big year 2013 was. Across the board busy and crazy, some good some bad, some ugly.

First of all I shipped more apps on more platforms than ever last year, let’s recap.

Apps this year
Feb, Big Shot Basketball, Carnival Labs (Coke/NCAA/Buffalo Wild Wings), Augmented reality game developed in Unity3D using Vuforia. Was for an in store promotion during March Madness college football, iOS|Android|Web (Flash)
Mar, Mojo Solitaire Collection, In House, A collection of solitaire games, with a play and reward coin based system to unlock new features and games. Developed using Cocos2d., iOS|OSX
Mar, Emirates Team NZ America’s Cup, Animation Research (America’s Cup), Customized version of the Emmy nominated America’s Cup app for iOS and Android for Emirates Team NZ, iOS|Android
Apr, Beat Block, In House, A rhythm based timing game, you memorize the beat and play it back as close as you can to the tempo. Insanely hard later on, super fun to make. It was made in 1 week, and is probably the least downloaded of our games. I hope to make a level generator later for it. Built with Cocos2d, iOS
Jun, Mojo Video Poker 3D, A port of Mojo Video Poker to Unity3D to reach more platforms. This was our first (and maybe last) entry into windows markets., Android|Windows 8|Windows 8 Phone
Jul, Big Kick Football, Carnival Labs (Coke/ESPN/Home Depot/Buffalo Wild Wings/etc), Augmented reality game follow up to Big Kick. This game was developed almost exclusively by me in under 3 months with some support in the last two weeks to get it across the board. Three platforms and lots of social media integration., iOS|Android|Web (Unity Player)
Sep, Mojo Mahjong 3D, In House, A 3D based version of Mahjong Solitaire. Featured different tile sets and a set of special day event puzzles (holidays). A pretty popular game, iOS|Android|OSX
Various, All Apps, In House, Tons and tons of updates for all our apps., All

So as you can see a very busy year! I worked on some great projects, released some cool new things for us, and made some great new friends through some talks I gave. I also left out a couple other contract jobs and apps I worked on as they were more hired gun things I did, versus apps I owned.

We had some trials and tribulations, from shipping apps and then clients refusing to pay in full. (They did in the end). Delayed payments, project pressures from too many chiefs and one worker bee (me the worker bee). But all in all good stuff.

Carnival Labs went on to secure a couple million dollars in funding, and in the press release I see that they mentioned on the front page the apps I had worked on (Big Shot, and a Dreamworks app I worked on in 2012). So that was satisfying to see my work help project another company.

Animation Research went on to be nominated for a sports emmy, (will update this post if they win!). Amazing to have worked with them, great people super proud of them and the work I did with them.

Our apps, was some of the most productive I’ve done. I actually have another app that is 95% done, that was ready in December, but I have it on the back burner, while I take care of some full time jobs and other things. But hope to release that soon, a new word puzzle collection style game.

This also includes the 60 new prototypes that were made and are sitting in my code base, I hope to get to!

2014 brings Hardware, lasers, and other crazy things.

Augmented Reality, Video Poker, Dinosaurs, and Word Puzzles

It’s been ages since I’ve updated the blog. Mainly because we’ve been so busy! In the last few months we’ve picked up our first new member of the team in ages. He’s helping us with some client work right now, we’re doing a followup to an Augmented Reality game we did for a couple brands in the USA. This followup was launched due to the success of the first campaign, and thankfully we were asked to carry out the work again! Augmented reality is becoming a daily part of our business, we do it for clients, and also have some projects we’re working on internally for education using Augmented Reality. We are hoping that we can get some support from NZ government to help us carry out an edutainment product for children.

Mojo Video poker had an update in May, this released a whole new game ‘Chase the Multiplier’ which is the most addicting video poker game to date! It’s extremely fun, and we still don’t charge for coins so what you pay is what you get, if you run out the game simply gives you more without additional purchases. Please check out Mojo Video Poker for your platform and let us know what you think!

Retro Art Studio has been doing great and we have a HUGE new version coming out, but it’s so big it’ll take some time for us to finish it. The key thing is some new ‘advanced’ drawing tools people have asked for, as well as the most often requested feature, a gallery. But this is a lot of work so please be patient!

In the pipe we have a set of word puzzle games coming soon, tentatively called Mojo Word Puzzle Games, we love word games and this is a collection of our favorites from the Sunday newspaper. Included is Word Search, Anagrams, and Word Jumble. There will be some fun twists and challenges as well, we hope to have this finalized through testing early August.

The biggest project we have coming up is a 13 year old one that I’ve had with me for a while. It was to be my 2nd game, and it never came to fruition. I spoke at a game conference in Auckland, NZ last month and feeding off the energy I spoke about the idea and had enough enthusiasm from people to pursue it. We’ve teamed up with an amazing artist who is breathing amazing life into the project, and it involved dinosaurs. We will be making a huge announcement on this project soon.

Lastly I’m tutoring a student from Auckland to make her first mobile video game. So far it’s coming along great, and as it comes playable I’ll have her share some info about it on this site to show everyone what New Zealand students are making these days.