Sep 16
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Game Craft

We were down at the Global Game Craft on Friday; check their site is here they will be running a few more Game Crafts soon so check them out! The objective of the game craft is to make a game in 24 hours based on a theme.

Nintendo were in attendance too and they were helping many of the teams quickly get to grips with their SDK, our friends over at Zombiesaurus actually developed their game using it and had really impressive results, so much so that they won the most potential award.  

We won an award for our game which was a great little bonus. 

Our team was a few of our regular team and our old colleague Ciaran Harrigan

The theme was a quote: "Reality becomes a prison to those who can't get out", we thought we'd try something a bit out there with it and try something more psychological.

Our game was Escape Harmony 

Here's the spiel:

  • You are in a drab boring world, trapped in an asylum; in your eyes there is no freedom but to escape the world.
  • Your objective is to escape your reality the only way you know how, by killing yourself.
  • You must find items to damage yourself inside the game while hiding from the orderlies, if they catch you you will be dragged to your room and the nightmare begins again.
  • Your end goal is to find your only escape from your reality you have placed upon yourself.
  • (Not the most uplifiting of game ideas!)
  • Team: Felix Wentworth, Ciaran Harrigan, Shaun Mc Closkey, Lewis Farrall, Jim Murray & Gavin Mc Laughlin

 

Want to try the game? Just follow this link and download the Unity Player if you need it. 

Sep 09
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Terramentals Progress Update 1 of 249

 

Hi guys, just a quick update here to fill everyone in our progress so far!

The team at Troll Inc are currently working hard on gameplay elements ahead of our beta release of Terramentals.

Our crew of artists have completely overhauled the in-game UI, which should make the users’ in-game experience much easier. Easy to-use UI systems are something we’re very passionate about as we believe that a common failing of mobile strategy games is a poorly designed/confusing  mechanics for interaction/combat.

The picture below shows a preview of the new UI system incorporated into the game:

 

While the artists have been polishing pixels on the visual side of the game, our programmers have been busily coding to ensure that the gameplay is as rock-solid as possible for the testing phase. We are currently in the process of tweaking some of the gameplay balance to make sure none of the monsters are overpowered in relation to the others.

This week has also seen the addition of sounds and music to the beta, so the player can get a sense of the personalities of our Terramentals!

All these changes are very exciting ones for us here at Troll Inc, and we’re looking forward to getting feedback from everyone who signed up for the beta program. This feedback can come in the form of bug reports, gameplay improvement suggestions, balancing issues or even innovative strategies you’ve developed. Feedback like this is vital to our development process, so please don’t hesitate to drop us a line!

Thanks!

 

The Troll Inc Team

Aug 22
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Why Notch was right dropping his game 0x10c

When Notch decided to stop development on the game 0x10c The Internet went crazy. Some people proclaiming Notch was all kinds of things. The more mature folk online merely wanted an answer about why he was doing this. He provided that answer in a blog post. His post has done a great job clearing up most of the sensible questions people were asking.

Aug 01
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How the Terramentals beta will work

(Beta Signups are now closed, thanks very much for all your help) 

Hi everyone here's quick bit of information on how the Terramentals beta will work. If you've any questions after reading this you can contact us on Twitter @Troll_inc or by E-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

If you sign up you’ll be in the first group of people outside of the Troll inc team who’ll get to play Terramentals. We appreciate your help in developing our game, so we’re going to keep things are easy as possible for you. For now all you have to do is join the Terramentals Beta Testers Email List. This will be where the main hub of activity takes place, and where we’ll be announcing all information relating to the beta. So it’s important to join if you’re interested. There’s no commitment by doing this either, so if you’re not sure why be adventurous and join as an original beta tester?!

Jul 26
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Terramentals Announcement

Terramentals

Today we’ve released a little teaser for our next game Terramentals, it’s a turn based strategy game we usually sum it up quickly by saying its Pokémon meets chess.

Some more information on Terramentals is located right over here

As the teaser suggests we’re developing the Beta for the game right now; which basically means an early non complete version of the game we use for feedback and testing. The beta will be going live in late September and if you’re interested in trying it out and giving some feedback just sign up at the link here. (Beta Signups are now closed)

With Terramentals we’re aiming to make a scalable game we grow over time; so the Beta will be pretty basic, just a few maps and monsters that look similar, but in making the Beta we get to test the most important thing; the gameplay and how fun it is. Then and only then we can move into full production.

The release version of the game we’re planning to vastly improve the variety of Terramentals (monsters) in the game, we’ll have the gameplay refined from the Beta and have a campaign mode in the game. Editable unique avatars and we’re also hoping to have a really nice online battle system, complete with trading your Terramentals, rankings and the like. All of this is as always open to change a little depending on how we get on with integrating everything above.

We’re hoping to initially release on Android and as a Web Player, not long after we hope to release to iOS and on the Nintendo Wii U, our next targets are PC and Mac, Windows Phone and Blackberry. We’ve got a nice breadth of markets there and the order isn’t written in stone as we’ll be really interested in seeing how the Beta goes and feedback from it.

As I mentioned though we really want Terramentals to be scalable so that we can keep adding more value to it. We have a goal that we want Terramentals to become if we can keep building and expanding it and that is an explorable Pokémon style world with online integration. That is our goal with Terramentals but with a small team we need to start by building the foundation of the game and should Terramentals take off it’s where we want to bring it to.

They’ll a few more updates showing progress over the next few months to keep us on our toes! So look forward to them

Sep 06
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Troll inc now developing for Wii U

Wii U

So as of last week we’re now an official Nintendo Developer, what does that mean? Well we’re hoping to release all of our products to Wii U in the future as well as our existing platforms. So it’s one more platform to add to the list, but it’s a little more than that too.

Most of us at Troll inc are console gamers, and it will be great to make games that use buttons, I suppose that may seem like a strange thing to say, but for me at least buttons make a massive difference and I’m really looking forward to getting games like Jellyflug up and running on the Wii U to try it out.

It’ll be a little while before we have some screens to show from our Wii U games but as soon as we do, we’ll post them here and on the Facebooks and the Twitters.

Jul 25
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The Story of Troll inc

We’ve been going a few years now; and I thought as a blog post it might help to give a little background on ourselves.

We started the company back at the end of 2010, the main reason was we just wanted a way to make games we wanted to make, and there wasn’t much else to it. There wasn’t really any games industry where we’re based in Northern Ireland, a few small companies like ourselves but none of the EA’s or Activision’s like in many other areas.

 So our choice was to either move to Scotland/England/Canada etc. or to set up on our own and just make it up as we went along. The decision was actually pretty easy to make. There was probably a bit of stubbornness in the decision, proving that an industry can be built locally and grow.

At the time we had already begun development of Jellyflug; it was to be our first game, we figured it would take a few months to develop; it took a little longer than that!

Jellyflug

In September 2010 the company was founded and we set up our offices in the NORIBIC incubation centre in the NWRC; the office was a great help in getting everyone together in one place which made a massive difference and the team at NORIBIC were really helpful in terms of advice and any other help they could be.

We got to work on Jellyflug which changed quite a bit the further we went into development, mostly because we learning as we went but over time we got things more and more organised. It took a while but by March 2012 we had Jellyflug ready; we spent the next 3 months fine tuning and bug testing and released Jellyflug in June 2012, and then on Android in September 2012.

We learned a lot in developing Jellyflug; probably the main thing was how much time game development actually takes! So we thought about how we could solve this issue.

Our solution was pretty simplistic to be honest we haven’t perfected it just yet, but it was simply to invest in R&D and use it to increase our skills and technologies. We with help from people like E-Synergy and Invest NI we were able to research and develop a few prototypes, and libraries that have helped us get a better handle on developing.

Avatars

Our new game Terramentals is the first example of it; we used the prototypes we’ve developed to make this game and now we’re bringing it to a testing stage.

We’re not going to full production and fully releasing Terramentals like we would’ve before but instead we’re going to Beta and testing features. We’re doing this for a few reasons.

·         It will allow us to quickly adapt to feedback without investing more months into a feature and having to drop it, or to add a feature we never realised could be really useful.

·         It means we can get a bunch of testers to find bugs we’ve probably missed

·         And most importantly it gets us talking with our players much earlier than we could any other way.

So Terramentals is our first test of this strategy, we’ll be adapting it and changing it I’m sure as we go, but so far so good with it!

We have a few other new games in the pipeline that the team are working on and we’re really looking forward to showing those soon too, so keep a look out!

 

Jul 25
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New Design!

Welcome to the newly designed Troll inc page; it comes complete with features such as Content! a useable menu system! and prettier design!.

We're planning to blog a little and keep updating, nothing crazy now! but we'd like to have some nice content updates every month about what we're doing or what's going on in the industry.

So... Lets see how this goes!

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