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You can find me at Dumb and Fat dot com!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Branching Out

Hey dudes!

So while I wait around on Crazy Over Goo sponsorship offers, I want to share with you guys a newer game idea I've had. This would be a casual iDevice game, and I have a couple ideas for how I'd like to get this on there. This is all part of my "maybe earn some money for once" plans.

Here's the basic concept (click to enlarge):

More details:
There'll be about 10-15 different varieties of enemies, each with a unique attack/defense pattern. You'll fight them one by one in random order forever and when you die you'll get a high score. It'll be moving quickly like other good replayable arcade iPhone titles (Sollipskier, Doodle Jump, Canabalt, etc.) so it won't feel repetitive.

The best way to kill enemies and score points is to break apart their shields, catch the falling debris, and fire the pieces back at them. If there's no debris on the screen and you're unarmed, the game will drop occasional default meta-ammo shots from the top of the screen you can use, but it's worth less points to use. Enemy attacks will be energy-based and can't be caught; but anything solid can be caught and used as ammo.

I'm looking for some initial reactions + ideas. You like this idea? Would you pay $0.99 to get this on your iDevice of choice? What additions do you think would improve the game? This is still in the conceptual phase so I'm open to all ideas.

Thanks! :)

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Crazy Over Goo FLASH Edition Trailer

This has been a long time coming. I've been working with a dude named Kristian Macanga and we've ported Crazy Over Goo to Flash. This new version has 63 levels over the original's 50, with many of the original's levels moved, edited, or outright replaced. New unlockables, a new "medal" system for players who are interested in getting high scores, and general awesomeness is all in this package.

As of now we're currently seeking sponsorship. Look forward to it!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Escape from the College Homework

So this is cool.

A class at Worcester Polytechnic Institute had to write critical analyses of Escape from the Underworld for homework this past week, which is pretty surreal/awesome as far as I'm concerned. Check it out here! (you might have to scroll a bit to find the relevant postings).

Not much else to say; just wanted to share that.
Oh, and be on the lookout for news on a secret ongoing flash project I've been doing... we're in the final testing stages right now.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Escape From the Underworld UPDATE

I've just added an update to Escape from the Underworld following some (fair) criticisms of the original.


Get it at: GameJolt / YoYoGames

What's NEW?
-"Challenge Mode" and GameJolt trophy integration--unlocked by reaching the credits screen. Adds replayability.

-Config menu added so you can edit scaling properties to make it look nice on larger monitors

-Small HUD/interface fixes in areas like the Game Over screen

-Some terrain edits in places that used to be troublesome to platform in

Overall I haven't changed too much as far as the world design goes and nothing as far as controls go. Yeah, the rough terrain can be tricky to deal with but it's never unfair or impossible... just tricky. And since now playtimes are going to get a little more competitive, I didn't want to change the nature of the game and its platforming. Get used to it, people out there who've whined about it.

Indie Kombat/Press
For those who haven't heard, by the way, Escape from the Underworld won Indie Kombat.

But more importantly, I want to give a big shout out/thank you to the sites that posted it after its release and gave such glowing reviews of it. It got an incredible response over at Indie Games blog, where it got 62 (!) responses (many of them members who disagreed on whether it was awesome or terrible). JayIsGames gave it a longer, more thought-out look. There were a few other places that syndicated it but those two drew the biggest crowds. The game's about due to die out into obscurity now, but it had a nice run, methinks. Now I'm just hoping for a Let's Play to pop up on YouTube...

EDIT 11-11
Escape from the Underworld is on BYTEJACKER! I'm up against some really tough competition (cactus and Pixeljam) so any support would be super appreciated!

Developer Commentary
Also, for those interested, I did a developer commentary that's currently on YouTube (of the old version)...

And here's part two

Sunday, November 07, 2010

The Nuzlocke Challenge, Part 2

Remember those Pokemon comics I drew? Well, I've had a bunch more sitting around. I meant to put them up once I had 4 new ones, but laziness/game making/college/whatever got in the way so I never drew anymore. Figured I may as well put them up now rather than waiting for a comic that probably won't ever be done.

EDIT an hour later: after putting them up I magically felt like drawing another one. So I added it.

5 | 6 | 7 | 8 |

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |

In the actual game I got up to Victory Road and then just kinda stopped playing around a month ago, with the intent to catch up comicwise. Maybe I'll come back to this, I'unno.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Escape from the Underworld - Complete!


It's here.

Working on this game for the last month has been a thrill, and I am really proud of it. With its release comes an immaculate chorus of "oh snaps," raining down from the heavens onto a befuddled, defeated Andrew Brophy. This is victory. This is glory. This is Indie Kombat.

Get it at: GameJolt / YoYoGames


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

We Heart Fanfics

I've teamed up with a few people who live in my dorm to make a new YouTube channel, titled "We Heart Fanfics."

We find bad fanfiction and read it and laugh at it. We already have a couple videos up and there will be more to come. If laughing at others' poor writing is your thing, you should totally check it out and subscribe or something.

Here's the link to the channel page:

And here's our most recent video:

If you have any terrible fanfiction you think we should check out, we'd love to hear from you.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Escape from the Underworld - Second Demo

Yeah, it's here already. Since I only had a month to work, this has been moving pretty quickly... but I still like to put out a demo at major junctions. Here's the post from Indie Kombat, copied and pasted for viewing pleasure:

It's the same link as before, right here:
Playtime's been extended... drastically. And save files from old versions are still perfectly functional (and still will be for the final release) so you don't need to replay anything. Feel free to try it out, in addition to adding a ton of new content I've also gone back and fixed things that players didn't like before.

Hey, in other news, has anyone seen Andrew? I've heard rumors of sightings in Melbourne, where people have seen him shambling from place to place with a hopeless look in his eye, trying to cope with a loss so profound and so imminent. I guess I can't say I blame him, but at this point I practically feel bad for still having all these demos and screens to share while he remains silent. This is feeling less like "Indie Kombat" and more like "Indie Banov-kicking-Andrew's-pathetic-ass."

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Escape from the Underworld - First Demo


I've just posted the first demo for Escape from the Underworld to IndieKombat. You can get the link/read the full post here!

Friday, October 08, 2010

Escape from the Underworld (Announcement)


So, this is my Indie Kombat game. It's a week into development, and it's frigging awesome. You should keep an eye on the posts Andrew I make on the Indie Kombat blog, because a lot of game updates show up there and it might be fun to watch us make fun of each other. I'm just going to reiterate stuff I've already said there:

It’s called Escape from the Underworld. It’s an exploration platformer and it has a bit of story, but no text or cutscenes. Most of the powerups you collect are items from Andrew’s games, and the exploration platforming has always been his shtick, so that all fits. But I’m going to be honest here: I don’t really see this game as an Indie Kombat game. This is a game I’m making for me, because it’s fun as hell to work on. I’ve been losing sleep at night because I keep getting little ideas for it. There are a lot of things in here that I’m trying for the first time, and they’re coming out surprisingly well. Bottom line: it’s going to be awesome.

And the fact that I will inevitably win this little scuffle with Andrew is a nice, secondary little bonus.

Look out for videos or a demo or something not too far from now.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Indie Kombat

I have a couple drafts I've been meaning to finish and post to this blog for a while, but for now I'm gonna forget about those and announce this: I'm in Indie Kombat this month.

"What does this mean?!" you ask. Well, Indie Kombat is a site based on indie game devs competing. Two or more developers state their rules and then each make a game, and at the end of their designated development time the games go up and people vote for the best game there. There is also some trash talking involved.

So over the course of October I'll be making a game against my friend hated enemy Andrew Brophy. You can read all about it --->right here<---

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Excerpt of a Scientific Philosophical Discussion at 2 AM

Hey, why not. A friend (whose name has been altered) and I had recently learned through wikipedia that some scientific theories proposed that there were 10 or 11 dimensions, which got us a-thinking about misc. physics and math philosophy questions. It was kind of fun and enlightening, and here's an excerpt for your reading pleasure/brain food.


[2:00:18 AM] Rose: but doesn't it freak you out that in the end all math is just a bunch of symbols we've agreed are real?
[2:01:07 AM] Banov: but math totally is real! right?
[2:01:21 AM] Rose: i mean to humans
[2:01:41 AM] Rose: but maybe it's only true in our minds? whatever that means.
[2:02:22 AM] Banov: I want to say that math
[2:02:30 AM] Banov: can't be just in our heads
[2:02:42 AM] Banov: rather it's our way of defining what we observe
[2:03:07 AM] Banov: like if I have a bottle of orange cream soda on my desk and put a second one there, I have 2
[2:03:12 AM] Banov: 1 + 1 = 2
[2:04:00 AM] Rose: yes but once you get into higher mathematics... and even zero!
[2:04:20 AM] Rose: like what's a cream soda divided by no cream sodas? No one knows
[2:04:27 AM] Banov: well
[2:04:43 AM] Banov: it approaches infinity on a graph…
[2:05:23 AM] Banov: it basically is infinity. but there's nothing to actually divide by so really the entire problem, and its solution, can't exist
[2:05:33 AM] Banov: (…is basically how I explain it to myself)
[2:06:02 AM] Rose: my point is even our own math proves that everything's relative
[2:06:15 AM] Rose: and these are only the phenomena we can personally experience
[2:06:40 AM] Rose: like there are dimensions we can't experience...
[2:07:19 AM] Rose: how can math that was created for four dimensions work for more than that without becoming horribly inaccurate or strained?
[2:08:24 AM] Banov: ah, you're totally right
[2:08:51 AM] Banov: well I think there are 2 ways of looking at it
[2:09:18 AM] Banov: I mean the theories and equations that we've come to accept DO accurately define and predict the things we can observe
[2:09:27 AM] Banov: and that's what they were made for
[2:09:59 AM | Edited 2:12:51 AM] Banov: so in the eyes of a dude who just wants a simple definition to explain the relationship of x and y, it's all true and acceptable
[2:10:25 AM | Edited 2:13:06 AM] Banov: but what you and i are talking about is what happens when we look at other dimensions beyond what we can observe
[2:11:01 AM] Banov: x and y might be influenced by an infinite number of other indefinable unobservable factors and only APPEAR to be related 3-dimensionally to us
[2:11:52 AM] Banov: so the theories we've made to define them, while accurate, might not be "absolutely" true as they don't account for every possible factor
[2:12:30 AM] Banov: and they probably never will. so when hawking says we'll never reach an absolute understanding of everything, he's probably right : d
[2:12:35 AM] Banov: probably.
[2:13:35 AM] Rose: yes. I guess it comes down to like if truth isn't finite or absolute, how can it be true?
[2:13:44 AM] Rose: and nothing is absolute, so nothing is true
[2:13:55 AM] Rose: and therefore nothing's wrong
[2:14:06 AM] Rose: it's a weird mental asymptote
[2:15:34 AM] Banov: I have gained an all new understanding of this jar of salsa

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Banov Takes the Nuzlocke Challenge

It's been a while since I've posted here, and I apologize for that! Honestly lately I haven't been doing much game work (and for what I am doing, there's nothing I'm allowed to talk about yet), so I haven't had much to say.

Nuzlocke Challenge
I recently discovered Nuzlocke Comics, which revolve around a run of one of the Pokemon RPGs with special rules that make it much more difficult... and exciting! It's apparently spawned a lot of copycats, and on a whim I decided to do my own run + comic accompaniment. Below are the pages I've done so far. I'm not going to guarantee I play the run all the way to the end or that I keep doing comics, but these were fun to do for the time being.
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |

For those curious, a couple of the pokemon nicknames (specifically, Strider and Lalonde) are pulled from this really wonderful webcomic series called Homestuck. Lately it's become among my favorite places to visit on the internet, updating frequently (often many times per day!) and I'm completely engrossed in the story. It's tough for me to recommend it outright as it starts slow and then starts to get hard to follow as the story goes deeper. BUT, if you invest the time to read through the archives and immerse yourself in it, Homestuck is a story that will really pay off.

And now, a slice of Banov's non-internet life:
My particular school starts very late, and at this point all but a handful of my friends have long since departed for college. This leaves me home alone pretty often. It's vaguely depressing.

I'd just like to point out that my Formspring account has been getting some pretty poignant questions lately concerning my future plans for game making so for those of you who are interested in that stuff you might like to check that out too. And I love getting questions, so if you have any for me or if you just want to give me something to think about or whatever feel free to send one my way!

Dubloon Deluxe CDs
Just letting you guys know that they're still available for a couple more weeks, until I leave for college. Get them while you still can!

Okay, that's basically all I have to say for now. Happy September!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

5 Video Game OST Songs I Really Like

I just found this post in my drafts, basically entirely written but unposted. I haven't laid out anything new for a while, so I figured I may as well throw this one out there.

These are just 5 OST songs that are mostly fairly obscure songs from popular games, which rarely are given an mention but I always treasured. Others are pretty popular well known OST songs but, whatever, they're good too.

So, in no particular order:

Mother 3: Someone's Memories (Pollyanna)

One of the most well-known tunes from a series known partly for its music, Pollyanna's been written about a thousand times before and there's little left for me to say about it. It's about friendship and nostalgia. It'smplayed in Mother 3 during a particularly nostalgic scene and when I first saw it as a youtube video it brought a tear to my eye.

Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald: Petalburg City

Just some jolly town music! Seriously, this tune is catchy and I used to hum it pretty frequently.

Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald: Ever Grande City

You know, the music from Ruby/Sapphire was pretty darn good among Pokemon titles, looking back. This music is played after you finish the games' final dungeon and are on your way to face the "final boss," the Elite 4. It's a song that congratulates you on a job well done, letting you know you've come a long way and you're finally at the top. You're ready to face the strongers trainers in Hoenn!

LOZ Wind Waker: Dragon Roost Island

Seriously beautiful stuff. A very evocative and pretty tune from a game whose music I dearly love. It's a bit reminiscent of Gerudo Valley, the classic from Ocarina--but if you ask me, this is even better to listen to. It really does give you a feel for the stubborn, proud people of Dragon Roost Island and the beautiful summery island atmosphere you're struck with with upon arrival.
Also recommended listening: A Live Version

Super Mario Land: World 2

Super Mario Land was one of my first games (as I once mentioned) and this particular world theme was just stunning. I used to play up to level 2-1, then turn up the volume and just hold it up to my ear so I could listen to the music until my time ran out and I died. Sigh.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

More Crazy Dubloon Fun Times!

Hey guys! Got a couple cool links to show you!

FIRSTLY, Dubloon is on Bytejacker this week! Those of you who loved the game, please support it by voting for Dubloon!

SECONDLY, Dubloon has an entry on TV Tropes*! I find this be INCREDIBLY exciting!

Also I want to mention that the donations page has gone through a couple changes, pertaining specifically to the Dubloon Deluxe CD. Shipping is far less expensive than I expected it to be (under $5, even internationally!), but I do now ask that the shipping money be included with your donation if you intend to receive a CD. Specific rates are on the donations page.

You should ALSO be aware that I've added a deadline for sending out the CDs (September 2010) and a limited number (24 copies!) so if you're considering getting a CD it's better to it sooner rather than later.

Okay! That is all!

*WARNING: Viewing TV Tropes is likely to monopolize hours of your time and consume your social life for at least one evening, often more. Proceed with caution.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Dubloon Aftermath and Site Updates

First and foremost, I want to give a huge thank you to everybody who has played Dubloon thus far! Despite my best efforts the initial release had some nasty bugs, but thanks to very responsive fans most everything has been ironed out and the game's been bug free! So I'm glad everybody's been enjoying the game--for those of you who might have missed it, the main download link is right here: BAM

On the topic of Dubloon, fans might be interested in my Developer Commentary which I've been recording on and off for the last week. You can view all the episodes in a convenient playlist right here:

As you've probably noticed, the site has undergone a few updates including the new title banner, a games page, and a donations page. It takes a lot of unpaid hours to make these games which I so generously give out for free, so any contribution back would be hugely appreciated! I'm also giving away a sweet Dubloon Deluxe CD to those who donate $15 or more--details on the CD and how to donate are on the donations page.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dubloon (Complete)

It's finally finished! A point-n-click pirate RPG adventure game. There are dungeons, bosses, sidequests and secrets in a huge explorable world.

Edit 6/16: Because of last-minute changes, there were some nasty bugs in the initial release. I'm very sorry for those of you who had to deal with my unprofessional mistakes :[ A fixed version is now up (with GameJolt trophy compatibility!) so if you're experiencing errors in certain areas please redownload.

File Size: 29.7 MB (11 MB version also available; see below)
Download Links:


LowFi Version:
This version has low quality music, but is only an 11 MB download. Not recommended.
LoFi Download

If you're really stuck and don't know what to do or can't solve a puzzle, you can consult this.
Walkthrough (For Landlubbers)

Gameplay Video (First 6 Minutes):

Screenshots: (Click to enlarge)

If you're really into the music Prophecy made, you can download the full game soundtrack with high bit rate/album artwork/proper song titles here.

You can get a Dubloon T-Shirt here! Feel free to send suggestions for designs you want... I like selling shirts.

Developer Commentary:

-Game by Banov
-Music by Prophecy

Changelog: In some cases I uploaded a bugfix without changing the version name within a few hours of each other.

-(BUGFIX) Error message caused by running in the Navy base of Jolly Roger island
-(BUGFIX) Error message thrown by the Mole boss when he tried to attack
-(BUGFIX) Game would sometimes skip naming one of the main characters, leaving his name blank.

-GameJolt trophy compatibility
-(BUGFIX)After opening the last chest before the boss in Treasure Tower, if a player tried to go back to the previous room the game would enter a never-ending cutscene loop.
-(BUGFIX)Some attack effects would appear to aim at the user's crew instead of the opponent's in a secret mode of gameplay.
-(BUGFIX)Error message when using "Avalanche" (this was as a result of the previous bugfix :p)
-(BUGFIX)After completing the game and re-loading your file, the crew would sometimes be missing and leave only the silent protagonist.
-(BUGFIX)On the top floor of the treasure tower, saving immediately after getting the Key but before trying to leave the room and loading later would skip crucial cutscenes
-(BUGFIX)(6/17/10) You can walk on water in a certain room of Pyrite island
-(BUGFIX)(6/17/10) One of the statue puzzles in the final dungeon will not work if you push any buttons outside the correct order (but it does reset when you leave the dungeon). (6/18/10)

-A number of typos corrected
-(BUGFIX)Talking to the viking on Jolly Roger or reading the map on Bowish would let you re-add islands to your map
-(BUGFIX)If a non-boss enemy was killed by poison damage, an error would be thrown and the battle wouldn't end
-(BUGFIX)One of the puzzles in Treasure Tower wouldn't take into account party order when it was supposed to (6/23/10)

-New Feature: an NPC in Pyrite Tavern who helps you find undiscovered treasure
-More NPC dialogue changes after beating final dungeon
-"Save Fixer" auto-fixes common save file bugs (missing/unnamed crew members) from previous versions upon loading your file
-(BUGFIX) Returning to the Golden Key room in Treasure Tower had some weird effects
-(BUGFIXes) Misc/etc (6/25/10)

-(BUGFIX) Characters level 40 or over couldn't easily equip attacks from special equipment items
-(BUGFIX) Saving your game when on a downed "color wall" and loading might find you stuck inside of it
-(BUGFIX) A rare error message thrown by a particular boss' attack
-(BUGFIX) Puzzles in Treasure Tower that require you to stand in certain patterns would not always register your position on the tiles properly

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Dubloon Release Date, LPs

Hey everyone!

So today the private beta version for Dubloon went out to just a few people for final testing and proofing. I'll be away on vacation until June 13, and then I aim for the official release date of Dubloon to be June 15, 2010. (Assuming that I don't get so many bugs I can't possibly fix them all in a day, though that is unlikely).

To keep you entertained while you wait, maybe you'd want to check out this brief Let's Play series I did:

I've liked LPs since I first discovered them, so I decided to give one of my own a shot. It's a Game Maker game called Purple, and I chose it because people seemed to like it, I'd never played it before, and there were no LPs of it already. I quit after 5 episodes, but in those 5 episodes I had some fun times. My sister guest starred in episode 5, which is probably the series high point.

Okay! Next time I update, it'll be with the finished version of Dubloon! I can barely contain my excitement :]

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The big 1-8

Guys! I am 18 today!

A bunch of things have happened since my last blog post, some good and some bad. The bad news is that the YoYo Comp 05 results came out, and CowbowKilla didn't even make honorable mention! Now I know I have gone on record saying that is CowboyKilla didn't get an honorable mention I would stop game making but, uh, we're going to ignore that because I still really want to make games. Just not for any stinking YoYo competitions.

I added some new shirt designs to my already impressive collection! Many of them were by request, so the shirt you want might just be up there. Remember that you can play with the shirt options and get cheaper "value" shirts for like $5 cheaper if the asking price seems a bit steep, which a couple people have complained about.


Work has continued on Dubloon, and as of now I'm tinkering with some of the game's final segments. It's exciting stuff! I previously said that my self-imposed deadline to make the finished game public is June 4, and I'm still hoping to beat that date, but a lot of things have cropped up lately and it looks like I might have to push it back a bit past then. Don't worry, though! The game is going to be finished, and I can say that 100% confidence at this point. That, too, is pretty exciting!

It's been a long road building this game, and there have been times when it seemed like I would never finish it. So thanks to everyone who's supported me along the way... we're almost there! I think I'd like to take this moment specifically to point out and thank RockytheChao AKA Mack151, for his awesome series of Dubloon LP Videos which have been a constant kind reminder of the kind of fan support this game has and, hopefully, is going to get once it arrives. Thanks, Rocky!

Aside from that, I've been doing internship work for a website/graphic design company which has been eating a good amount of my time, and I have another SECRET game-related project which is pretty exciting but not ready to be revealed yet.

Okay--that's all I can think of off the top of my head in terms of news. I can't think of a definitive way to end this blog post, so I'll probably just end it awkwardly like this.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Announcing: A New Store!

Check it out, you guys!

I've mentioned this before, but now it's official: I'm selling t-shirts! I've got 9 designs already made for you to choose from, and for each one you've got a lot of options in terms of color and style and such. So check it out, and buy something maybe! I get a bit of profit from every shirt you purchase, so anything you get is hugely appreciated.

Here are just some of the designs available (click to enlarge):


...and more! Feel free to send requests, too. Happy shopping!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

So, What's New

Hey, guys. April Fools was a RAGING success, I'd say. I enjoyed a lot of your reactions. If you really did fall for it and were excited by the screenshot, you should check out CowboyKilla, which the screen was actually from.

Speaking of which:
CowboyKilla is on BYTEJACKER!
Do vote for it if you liked it.

Some more links for you:
I got a Formspring! They look like fun and a bunch of my friends got them so I figured why not. Ask me something so this decision feels worthwhile!
I was Interviewed on IVGMU. It's a cool site, and I'm on there now, so it's a worthwhile visit.
I made this utility that helps you win at the game corner minigame in the new Pokemon games. I mostly made it for myself to see how much I could break the game; I ended up making 12,000 coins over the course of the couple evenings I spent playing with this. So it's useful if you have the game.

And now I'm back to work on Dubloon. Going to start the final dungeon soon, and it's a pretty straight shot to the end of the game. Very exciting. I've also been doing some work on the music for the final sections. I'm actually looking for a good program to edit MIDI music; I have some sweet MIDI tunes, but I'd like to be able to cut some bits and change the tempo. Does anybody know where such a program exists?

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Assassin Blue 2: Red's Revenge (April Fools)

Hey everyone, just a quick announcement.

Remember all those times people begged me for a sequel to Assassin Blue? I get messages constantly--it often feels like daily--from fans asking when the sequel will be finished. And I've always told them it isn't happening. I'd made it publicly clear that I had no intention of making a sequel, and never was going to, but fans persisted.

Well, I lied then. Assassin Blue II is well into development, and today I'm ready to reveal it to the world. This is just a screenshot; you can expect the full game later this week.



Monday, March 29, 2010

CowboyKilla - Complete!

A collaboration between Banov and Andrew Brophy for YoYoGames Comp 05. The game also features a soundtrack by the incredible Lil Vypa.

The game's a hardcore bloodbath action game with hordes of enemies and lots of sweet weapons to kill them with. Controls are arrows + Z. Have fun!

File Size: 9.9 MB
Download Links:
Mirror 1:

Mirror 2:

Screenshots: (Click to enlarge)

Video: Here.

-Game by Banov & Overboy
-Music by Lil Vypa

Comments and constructive feedback are greatly appreciated!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Hello, everyone!

Hope you all enjoyed Dubloon's awesome update! Feedback for that was pretty overwhelmingly positive, so I'm looking forward to the game's release. For now, though, it's CRUNCH TIME on Cowboykilla. We had planned to get you a new demo sometime soon but due to some delays and sickness that may or may not happen. Right now the big goal is getting everything finished by March 30th. We have a lot of content planned... it's going to be awesome, trust me.

I recently became an official "reviewer" on the Game Maker Community, and here are the reviews I've penned so far during my tenure. I recommend all these games, as they're pretty awesome.

MadnessMadnessMadness by NAL
The Hanrahan Game: Final Mix by Flying Squire
Spelunky by Derek Yu
Sworrd Buster by Andrew Brophy


I've started to consider selling some T-Shirts featuring artwork/themes from some of my games, as a way to promote myself and make a little cash on the side. Basically, I'm looking for some quick feedback on this: would you buy a t-shirt from me? Which of my games/characters would you most like to see, or maybe what particular design? Anything goes, I'm basically looking to see if I would sell enough to warrant printing shirts/what design people want the most.

So, let me know! Thanks~

Friday, February 26, 2010

Dubloon - Final Demo!

A point-n-click pirate RPG adventure game in the making. There are dungeons, bosses, sidequests and secrets in a huge explorable world.

This is the final demo; the next time I release an update, it will be the finished game! Please play, enjoy, and share your thoughts!

Title: Dubloon
File Size: 19.6 MB (9 MB version also available; see below)

Download Links:
Mirror 1:

Mirror 2:

LowFi Version:
Recommended for users with a slow connection. This version has low quality music, but is only a 9 MB download.
LoFi Download

If you're really stuck and don't know what to do or can't solve a puzzle, you can consult this.
Walkthrough (For Landlubbers)

YouTube Trailer:

Screenshots: (Click to enlarge)

-Game by Banov
-Music by Prophecy

Comments and constructive feedback are greatly appreciated!

Monday, February 08, 2010

The Problem(s) With RPGs

I got Game Maker in May 2005, and shortly thereafter, one of the first games I started working on was a role playing game, better known as an RPG. In fact, you can still see the original posting (though the download links have long since been removed). I spent over a year working on it and the game was never finished.

Yoshi and Dave together?! regular overworld

Now, compare that story to this one: I started Dubloon in May of 2009. Less than a month later, I'd already made more progress with Dubloon than I had in the entire development time of my first RPG. It also looked better, played better, worked better, and was easier to work with.


Basically what I'm getting at here is that making an RPG is hard and not to be attempted by the inexperienced. I'm not saying it's impossible, but in terms of game making RPGs pose way more obstacles than any other genre of video game I can think of. So as part cautionary tale, and part "developer's journal" sort of thing, I'm going to talk about what I've learned about making RPGs and some of the pitfalls in designing them.


One of the first thing people always talk about when it comes to this topic is the amount of technical expertise you have to come in with. This one should seem obvious. When you talk about the inner workings of a role playing games, you're looking at a lot of data that has to be organized, computed, crunched, what have you--constantly. You'll be handling inventories, character statistics, battle calculations, and so on. It can be hard to keep track of, especially when your development team consists of one person. You need to be adept with things like arrays and data structures and all that fun stuff--this should go without saying, but I programmed my first RPGs without these, and it sucked. Hard. Projects like RPGs don't exactly go by quickly, either. The code you write needs to be functional, annotated, and organized enough so that you can come back to it even a year later and still know exactly what it does. When new game makers start off by saying they want to make their dream RPG, as I did, this is usually the reason why they're told that they can't.


RPGs aren't just difficult to build technically, but also--if I may--artistically. Unlike games in other genres, the expectation in a legitimate, fully realized RPG is a pretty high playtime. Most independent games can be beaten within an hour, easily, if not 15 minutes or so. To account for that huge difference in playtime, you need to come into RPGs with a truckload of gameplay mechanics and ideas to keep things varied and interesting. The problem I find with a lot of RPGs is that they become too comfortable falling into boring patterns... explore dungeon, griiiiiind, fight boss, move to next dungeon. Nowadays games move very quickly, and game designers have a lot more responsibility to battle to keep the player's attention. Don't let your game grow stale! "RPG" should not be synonymous with "boring," and if you actually put some thought into how your game is paced and feels it's still entirely possible to put together a very fun, engaging RPG.


That said, it's become clear that RPGs nowadays aren't as well received by players as they once were. I was rather painfully introduced to this fact when Dubloon went up on IndieGames back in July 2009. People had posted pretty slanderous comments--"just another RPG"--without even having played the game. RPGs just aren't as appreciated as much these days, and you can see that trend in places like Indiegames' "Best of Features" end of year lists. Most genres got 15-20 games listed under them; RPGs were lumped in with 2 similar genres and together all 3 were able to produce 10 "best" titles for the year. When it comes to the independent games "market," it takes a lot of promise to convince people these days that your RPG is worth their time. Maybe I'm reacting too strongly to a minority group of haters, but it's never a bad idea to try and innovate. Be mindful of your game's image: how will players see it? There's a reason why lists like these exist and it's important that you familiarize yourself with what the genre cliches are... so you can break them.


Are RPGs dead? I don't think so, not at all. They're very good at giving players a very particular sort of experience, one where they really feel character growth and adventure in a way no other genre can quite deliver. What's important when making a good RPG is knowing what they're good at and what they're not so good at, and using those qualities to your advantage. When I started my first RPG, I started it just because I wanted to make an RPG, and I don't think that's the right way to approach these things. An RPG simply isn't interesting just by virtue of being an RPG. When I started Dubloon, it was because I wanted to make a game about pirates, and I decided that the best game to deliver that sort of pirate "experience" would be an RPG. Let the genre be your tool... don't be a tool of the genre.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Hello February

Hey, guys! So, here are some updates on what I've been doing.


CowboyKilla has actually taken up the bulk of my work, but before I get into that, I wanted to talk about Dubloon a little. I'm determined to finish it and get it out this Spring, even if that means cutting out areas I have planned for the game--it already takes hours to beat, so as far as I'm concerned length isn't a primary concern.

I've just made a new title screen for it, I want to get some quick reactions to it. See:

The old one

The new one

This new one looks prettier, I think, and fits the game better... and I have some ideas about how I can transition it into the opening cutscene. I also started drawing out some floor plans for the next dungeon after I got some cool puzzle ideas, but, I'm still struggling to come up with a good tileset for the dungeon. Backgrounds have always been a bit of a weakness/pain for me, honestly. I don't see a new release in the near future yet, and I doubt there will be a major release until CowboyKilla is ready for the competition.

Speaking of which...


We're now entering month 2 of development, and things are going smoothly. There will definitely be a new release on this one in February. I've been a busy bee on this one, and there are a lot of fun things I can't wait to show you guys. Here's a quick screenshot...

Yes--Custom mode! As you complete levels in the game, you'll be able to access the weapons, enemies and maps and use them to craft your own level. A lot of the weapons are very experimental in nature, so you might have fun just testing the effectiveness of different weapons against different enemies... while causing untold bloodshed and ruin, of course.

We plan to bring you a total of 6 levels next time we update, so you can expect a lot of exciting new content. Do look forward to it!



I've been very active on Twitter after getting one, so if you're a fan and you aren't following me there... I think you should!

Lil Vypa, the fantastic composer behind CowboyKilla, has recently come out with a new Mix tape which I highly recommend! I'm not normally a fan of this sort of music, but Vypa's always surprisingly good and this tape is no exception. Give it a listen!

Monday, January 25, 2010

I am a Twit

I just set up a Twitter account like 5 minutes ago! I'm going to see how this works out for me. Perhaps if you like me a lot you'll follow me?

For those of you waiting on game updates, thanks for your patience! I've made some recent progress with Dubloon... I had some fun puzzle ideas and I started putting them together for the next dungeon. Still a ways off from letting you play anything, but at least I'm making some progress.

CowboyKilla is going smoothly as well. Andrew and I have a lot of cool things in store, but we're going to keep it all a secret for now :} CowboyKilla has been getting more attention than my other projects, but to be fair, the stakes are a bit higher on it.

Monday, January 18, 2010

CowboyKilla First Demo

CowboyKilla [Working Title]
A WIP collaboration between Banov and Andrew Brophy for YoYoGames Comp 05. The game also features a soundtrack by the incredible Lil Vypa.

The game's a hardcore bloodbath action game with hordes of enemies and lots of sweet weapons to kill them with. Controls are arrows + Z. Have fun!

Title: CowboyKilla [Unofficially]
File Size: 4.5 MB
GM Version: GM8
Changes Screen Resolution: No

Download Links:
Mirror 1:

Mirror 2:

Screenshots: (Click to enlarge)

Video: Here.

-Game by Banov & Overboy
-Music by Lil Vypa

Comments and constructive feedback are greatly appreciated!