Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

Overgrowth and The Indie Attitude

I was chatting to Jeff from Wolfire a few weeks ago about their game overgrowth, and we started experimenting with ideas for cross-promoting our games. Since then I’ve been insanely busy, but I did get as far as putting this rather cool, and (to me) amusingly rabbit shaped spaceship (complete with Overgrowth logo) into GSB:

Why a rabbit? Well I think I should let Jeff himself describe what the rabbit connection is:

“Overgrowth takes place in the savage world of Lugaru where rabbits, wolves and other animals are forced to use paws, claws and medieval weaponry to engage each other in battle. Combining 3rd person adventure platforming with intricate melee combat, Overgrowth achieves a unique feel. Overgrowth also benefits from Wolfire’s brand new Phoenix Engine which has been built from the ground up to allow the use of cutting edge graphics, animation, and physics.”

Overgrowth certainly looks like an amazing game. I remember being impressed by the original Lugaru game, and OG looks like it will be a big hit.

The thing I find really interesting though, is the way in which our companies can do stuff like this, where we promote each others games, even stick content from one game in another, with the minimum of fuss. When I suggested we stick a rabbit ship in GSB to see how it could work, I didn’t need to get my lawyer to talk to wolfires lawyer. I didn’t need a strategic planning meeting with the head of corporate strategy, or have to justify to shareholders why we should help out what they would see as our competitors…

This is what I like about the Indie attitude.  Indie devs often share tips on game coding, getting decent contract work done, promoting websites and running forums, even the financial side of the best payment providers and who knows a decent accountant etc.

Can you imagine the head of EA giving the head of Activision tips on how to save on their bandwidth bill?

This is the indie attitude, and the indie advantage. We tend to take it for granted, because at the end of the day, me and jeff are two guys who love games and love making games. Somewhere along the line, the mainstream industry forgot that.

12 thoughts on Overgrowth and The Indie Attitude

  1. *stares at the japanese doujin market*

    ….they’ve done that crossover thing quite a lot.

    Though it’s mostly apparent in certain content I’m not gonna mention here.

    “Can you imagine the head of EA giving the head of Activision tips on how to save on their bandwidth bill?”

    If that results in cheaper games, WHY NOT!?

  2. That’s one of the things I love about indie development… you not only have space to be creative, but also to embrace the creativity of others; there’s less competition and more interaction, a feeling of “community” that can’t be found in the larger companies.

    I, for one, like to support indie developers – in fact, most of my favorite games, recently, have been from indie or small company developers, and I’m hoping GSB will soon join the list. ;-)

  3. you also dont suffer from the buy aa good IP and spew out endless sequals disease that some publishers have.

  4. The thing I love about Indie games is that there doesn’t seem to be the same fear of experimentation that the larger companies seem to have. One of my favourite games, Mount & Blade, is a fairly unique game that a major game studio would almost certainly not undertake because it breaks so many of the ‘established rules’. The same goes for your games, Cliff. You wouldn’t catch a major studio making GSB the way you’re making it because they would have to have very high-end graphics and it would be much more of an RTS than GSB is going to be.
    But I think it’s great that you’re making a game like that because I think we all want to sit back sometimes and just watch the mayhem unfold without having to nanny the units.
    Keep up the good… no… GREAT work!!! :D

  5. hey Dev

    one little question to you:
    at the first look i have the opinion that
    gratuitous space battles have alot of things in common with an other indie game named “Battleships Forever”…
    do you get the inspiration formt that game or was it you own great idea? ;)
    I hope that the game will be playable soon :)

    PS:At the risk of offending you :it isn`t my goal

  6. I hadn’t heard of that game until i’d started work on GSB, but a few people have mentioned it. I try not to play games too similar to what I’m doing so as to keep mine original. I’ve still nevr played alter ego, although people say kudos is like that game :D

  7. its kinda funny :D

    maybe i am getting anoying but another thing in wanna ask:
    are the ships completly independent while they kill each other or is there a chance to control their doings at the battlescreen

  8. I agree with CountVlad. I purchased Mount & Blade a long time ago when it was in beta because i really enjoyed what the developers have done with the game. Indies break the mould and that’s why i love Positech Games.

  9. Damn you Firefox! I had almost finished a longish post on how retail games were the equivalent of Hollywood blockbusters and indie games were a combination of arthouse movies and Z grade direct to video slasher pics when my browser crashed on me.

    I’m not going to type all of that in again, so I’ll content myself with saying that more games should have spaceships shaped like rabbits.

  10. I loved the fact that I could easily make a clay bunny for Overgrowth and cross promote in such a way. Nice one Cliff, I’m loving the bunny spaceships. It is great to see that promoting games doesn’t have to be about trying to shout louder than each other to get your game noticed. Shouting in unison can have much better affects. -Sarah Q

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