The picture above is from our talk. Unfortunately, we couldn't record the entire talk, because Malcolm accidentally forgot the charger to the camcorder (good job, bro), but the slides are still helpful all the same.
Backstory: Avik Sogoyan
If you're joining us for the first time: Malcolm and I had this really cool idea for a video game app, but our graphic design skills needed a lot of work. People kept giving us blank stares every time we used the above image to explain our idea. We knew our idea for ProjectMQ was feasible; the problem was that our design looked like some kids in grade school made it.
Our UI (user interface) seriously needed some professional polish, so we searched the world wide web, and found Avik Sogoyan. Avik happened to have some down time between a few projects (Call of Duty's website redesign, Infamous: Second Son, etc.), and was interested in hearing our idea.
Our original vision for ProjectMQ was....very complex. It was heavily rooted in the gaming industry, and had layers of technology that the average person hadn't heard of. So, in hindsight, I'm not surprised that we had to explain it several times for most people to understand our idea.
Luckily, Avik was the exception; he has an impressive professional/personal background in gaming, and is current on emerging tech trends. Long story short: he quickly understood what we were trying to build, and refined the visuals for ProjectMQ, so it's much easier to explain to others.
Doesn't that look better? That's a rhetorical question. Of course it looks better than our original grade school drawing. And that's just the wireframe; wait until you see his full-color mockup! Now, thanks to Avik, we had new images to help us more easily explain the user experience for ProjectMQ, but there was a problem.
Did our idea realistically add value to other game studios? We needed more industry input to bring better definition to ProjectMQ. We needed the perspective of an industry veteran...[to be continued in the next newsletter]
Backing Indie Dev on Kickstarter
Here's a quick update on the Kickstarter projects from our 2nd newsletter:
Unfortunately, Hello Neighbour! wasn't funded, but they're still eagerly working on their game. We've invited them as one of our pilot studios, and can't wait to see their future progress!
Thank you to everyone that joined us in supporting both of them! Visit their sites (by clicking on the linked text above) for updates on their games. Also, you can check our Kickstarter Profile for a full list of games we're supporting. Here are two more games that we've recently backed:
Dark Flame is a MetroidVania, Action-RPG, Storyline-based fantasy where you play as a knight who is constantly being drawn to darkness. They've raised 10% of their $75K goal so far, with 9 days to go.
Blacksea Odyssey is a 2D top-down shoot ’em up with RPG and rogue-like elements. It carries with it a blend between old school arcade shooters, newer RPGs, rogue-likes, and a modernized design with a heavy emphasis on replayability. Blacksea Odyssey has raised 52% of their $10K goal, and has 16 days left in their campaign. If you like either (or both) of the games, please help them reach their funding goals!
FREE GAME ALERT!!!!
We've been really busy preparing for the pilot this weekend, but made sure to find you another great free game. This one is from Justin Fletcher (@SuperJustin5000). Laser Evasion Dynamics (LED) has a beaming gauntlet of 100+ high-speed, skill-testing laser obstacles. It features simple and addicting touch-and-move controls, plus multiple unlockable songs by Night Runner.
Come join in the fun! Are you playing some cool indie games we should know about? Tweet them to us, so we can retweet them to our followers. Everyone who participates will have a chance to win a FREE game, and be highlighted in our next newsletter. Thanks in advance for helping us support indie games!
Raffle for FREE Indie Game Codes
Lost Orbit is sponsored by PixelNAUTS Games (@PixelNAUTSgames) and Pixel Starships is sponsored by SavySoda (@SavySoda). Follow them for a chance to win their games. We’ll select our winners from their followers list. Remember, you'll UNLOCK 1 Indie Dev game code for every 5 RTs of our pinned tweet on #IndieFeatureMonday and #IndieFeatureFriday. Learn more about their games below.
Lost Orbit is a fast paced and deadly dodge 'em up. Players take control of a lone astronaut (Harrison) who embarks on a dangerous journey to rejoin his civilization. Armed with only an improvised set of equipment and a relentless spirit, Harrison will need to speed his way across four systems, survive over 40 levels of intense challenges, and confront not only his mortality, but what lurks in the darkness...
Pixel Starships is the world's first full control starship management strategy sci-fi mmorpg game, in an 8-bit massive online universe. It was greenlit on Steam in 11 days, and successfully funded on Kickstarter! Pixel Starships is scheduled for release sometime next month.
ProjectMQ Dev Update
Here's a quick summary of the recent progress we've made with ProjectMQ:
Redesigned the UI for the "recent shares" page.
Upgraded the virtual machines, to increase site performance.
Added game content for more than 65 indie studios from around the world!
Launch Trailer UNLOCKED
You've read this far, so I'm not going to make you wait any longer. Here's our launch trailer, thanks to the talented team at Trailer Squad
You probably noticed the UI doesn't match Avik's designs. We're sorry, but we had to temporarily table them, so we could launch as soon as possible. Patience, respective young padawans, we'll get back to the new UI after we start the closed alpha.
How can you be part of the madness this weekend? Simple. Answer 5 short, multiple-choice questions from our pilot survey: bit.ly/ProjectMQSurvey. THIS PART IS IMPORTANT: don't forget to include your email address. At 11:59pm EST on Saturday, November 28th, we'll email user credentials to 2K of you, so you can join us on the site for 48 hours. We currently have 548 survey responses with an email address, so the odds are ever in your favor. Good luck!
Completing the console tri-force (because we're still working on that)
What's after the 48-hour sneak peek weekend?
Marcus and Malcolm
P.S. We just reached 5,000 followers for our @ProjectMQ Twitter account. I'm not a big fan of planes/heights (I fell off the roof of a house once....); though, if we reach 10K by December 1st, I'll go skydiving!
P.S.S. As always, your feedback is encouraged and appreciated