Starting a New Year by Looking Back

It’s 2014 and we’re hard at work on Thumper.  Recently, the game received coverage from IndieStatik, The Guardian, IndieGames.com, and PC Gamer — they’ve all mentioned Thumper as an indie game to look forward to in 2014.

We’ve been developing Thumper for a long time, and we’ve done a lot of experimentation along the way.  To start the new year, we’ll share some footage from our early prototypes.  Oftentimes game developers are shy about sharing this sort of thing for obvious marketing reasons.  Early prototypes usually look rough and you don’t ever want your game to look bad.   Your game will change a lot during development and showing early versions can create false impressions or expectations.  But prototypes can be a fun and interesting insight into the creative process, so we’re happy to share ours!

So, with the standard caveat that these videos do not represent the final gameplay, graphics, or audio of our game, here is footage from one of our first prototypes.  We developed a custom engine for Thumper and at this early stage, our renderer was limited to drawing solid lines.  That limitation led to a pretty cool vector art style.

Next, a slightly more developed prototype.  At this point, we were able to draw lines and solid color quads.  It was the pinnacle of my programmer artistry.  This prototype also shows our first experiments with path barriers and jumping.

Shorty after we made this build, I added support for drawing meshes, textures, and a basic lighting model to our engine.  So Brian (the Drool artist) was able to start developing our visual style and, sadly, my promising career as a programmer-artist ended.  We’ll share more of our prototypes and concept art in the coming months, but if you want a better idea of were Thumper is headed, check out our teaser trailer.

3 thoughts on “Starting a New Year by Looking Back

  1. Hey, try practicing once before shooting a video man! jj
    Its always interesting looking back. For every decision we make towards specificity and detail we lose, in equal measure, some of the iconic quality that I love. We’ve clearly made the game more accessible over time, but every iteration has closed as many doors as it has opened. Interesting journey.

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