Archive for the ‘DownWords’ tag
We’re trying to keep this blog updated. Generally failing in any reasonable sense of the word “udpated,” but we are trying
We had a small game night last night, just me, Sean, and Jordan, our new(ish) QA guy. We opted to try out Fiasco, a “storytelling game,” I purchased a digital download of last week. Fiasco aims to replicate a kind of loose, short-session Dungeons & Dragons, only with far less rules and no Dungeon Master. Drawing from small-time caper films where something goes horribly wrong (BLOOD SIMPLE, A SIMPLE PLAN, THE KILLING, FARGO, etc.), players take on various roles, have relationships with one another, and then most of us try to do something stupid, with the end result being catastrophe. The goal being to simulate in about two hours one of those caper films. Our first play session went reasonably well. We chose an Old West scenario, with Sean playing a grizzled ranch hand (Billy Bahb) and partner to Jordan’s ranch hand (Skeeter Montana). Years ago, a drunk Billy Bahb tried to convince Skeeter to purchase his railroad pushcart and goaded him into taking it down to the haunted mine, where Skeeter found old pirate gold (no idea why there were pirates in the Old West, but hell, it’s our first time playing). Back to the present of our story, and Billy tries to convince his no-good stepson Bobby Bahb (me!), a janitor at the hotel Skeeter owns with part of his gold proceeds to rob the hotel safe and get the gold back that should be rightfully his. Bobby sleeps with Skeeter’s wife after nailing him into the outhouse. Billy Bahb tries to (unsuccessfully) burn the outhouse down with Skeeter in it (Skeeter rocks the outhouse over on top of Billy Bahb). Billy Bahb’s wife, Dolly, tells him she slept with someone else, setting off a drunken rampage where he beats Dolly.
Billy Bahb asks for Bobby’s help again, with Bobby agreeing. Skeeter overhears and becomes paranoid. In the second act, Skeeter sends goons out to beat Billy Bahb and Bobby up and tie them up. Dolly comes in with a gun, shoots her husband in the leg. The Bahbs get free and open up the safe with Dolly’s help (she had the key due to her relationship with Skeeter; and of course, I have to sleep with her again). Bobby turns on his dad and knocks him unconscious. He and Dolly get the gold. Billy Bahb shoots his son in the head, Dolly shoots her husband a few more times, and Billy Bahb rides off on the handcart with the gold, down to the old haunted mine. Skeeter dies of his wounds, Bobby ends up mentally handicapped, working as a janitor in the new hotel in town, no longer a ladies’ man, and Bobby haunts the mine. Dolly winds up with the gold that conveniently fell off the handcart and takes over the town.
Fiasco was a lot of fun, and even with people who aren’t the strongest at improv, the suggestions and twists gave us a decent little story. Rules are fairly limited, which lets you craft a story fairly easily and also adds some tension and complications. I’m interested to try the game again.
We also played Small World, with Sean edging me out by a single gold coin at the very end (120-119). What a frustrating way to lose!
On to actual Gamzee product news. We’ve been working hard away on a few things. First is the iOS version of DownWords, which we actually finished and were ready to release. But then we realized we should wait, because we’re also adding some cool multiplayer features to the game that will make it that much better.
And we’ve also been working on our mysterious third game, which is seeing great progress. I can’t say what it is, but can say that it’s a very social, multiplayer game that should appeal to people who like things like Words With Friends and Draw Something.
Again, we’ve been woefully remiss in updating the blog (too much work, but in a good way).
At any rate, we did Game Night, as usual, last night, and were joined by our friends Holden and Duffy from PageWoo. Howard Marks (Gamzee CEO and co-founder) co-founded an incubator/startup accelerator called StartEngine, that we happen to share office space with. StartEngine’s a 90-day program that gives startups a seed investment, office space, expertise, and mentoring; and besides Howard and Paul Kessler from Bristol (one of Gamzee’s investors) has a really great group of mentors onboard from different entrepreneurial backgrounds.
The takeaway is that there are 10 other startups in our space, including PageWoo, who are doing quick, single-page websites for brands. It provides a really nice energy and a lot of cool people to run things by. And apparently new folks for Game Night.
Last night, we eased them into Game Night (they were new to it) with the single longest game of Munchkin (Munchkin Booty, to be precise) I’ve ever played. It took about 2 hours (it’s normally a 30-45 minute game), and Abe finally won it. That was followed up by a couple of rounds of BANG! Duffy was a little slow to pick it up and died almost immediately as the Sheriff. The second round, I would’ve won as outlaw, taking out the renegade (Duffy again) and the Sheriff (Max, playing the worst game of BANG! known to man, which started with him killing his Deputy, Sean), except Sean decided to simultaneously “help” (read “play”) Duffy and Max’s hands. So Max won.
In more work-related news, we’re in open beta testing of our newest game, DownWords. DownWords is a casual action word game that combines Tetris and Scrabble. Letter tiles fall from the top of the screen, and you have to click them and form words. The tiles gradually drop faster and faster, and eventually they’ll scroll off the screen, ending the game.
So far, feedback has been very positive (which is nice, we’re really fond of the game). It’s currently playable on desktop Web and on iOS devices. Android coming soon. And we’ll be launching it in earnest shortly.