Sep 302013

Hi everyone! We got approval from kickstarter so we’re making the Cosmic Star Heroine kickstarter go live tomorrow morning at around 9 am!

We’re really excited! We’ve been working on preparing this kickstarter for the past few months and can’t wait to show it off! If you like what you see and want to see us continue to improve with each game, please donate! $10 will get you a copy of the game on the format of your choice – PSN (PS4/Vita), Steam (PC/Mac), or DRM-Free PC/Mac – and there are plenty of other fun rewards to be had at the various levels. And just as important as your own support is to help spread the word. Tell your friends who might be interested, post the news on forums, mention the game on Facebook, Twitter, and the like, and more! The more people find out about the game, the more money we raise, the more freedom we’ll have in developing our best game yet!

And once again, thank you for all of your support over the years! We couldn’t have done this without you! Let’s make Cosmic Star Heroine our best game yet!

 Posted by at 5:18 pm
Sep 282013

Previous Kickstarters

Shades of Sanity - $15k ($200k goal). Failed.
Shantae: Half-Genie Hero - $481k. 5 days left.
Mighty No. 9 – $2.78 million. 3 days left.
Sunless Sea - £73k. 4 days left.
Alteil Horizons – $35k ($100k goal). 7 days left.
Octopus City – $20k. Finished.
Hot Tin Roof: The Cat that Wore a Fedora – $22k. 1 day left.
Death Road to Canada – Permadeath Road Trip Simulator – $42k. Finished.
Hyper Light Drifter – $331k. 13 days left.
River City Ransom: Underground – $113k CAD ($180k goal). 13 days left.
The Long Dark – $89k CAD ($200k CAD goal). 17 days left.
DCS WWII: Europe 1944 – $114k. 6 days left.
Pocket Rumble – $7k ($16k goal). Failed.
Citizens of Earth – $13k CAD ($100k goal). 21 days left.

New Kickstarters

Cornerstone: The Song of Tyrim – About $6.7k raised ($30k goal). About 310 backers. 27 days left. Cel-shaded isuals reminiscent of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. Action/Adventure game with an emphasis on exploration.

Comic ConQuest – About $6k raised ($20k goal). About 160 backers. 24 days left. Colorful tactical RPG where convention cosplayers gain the powers of their costumes. Jeff Matsuda as executive producer/featured artist. Freemium.

GoD Factory – About $22k CAD raised ($70k goal). About 430 backers. 19 days left. Competitive multiplayer combat game for PC, Mac, and Linux. Second attempt at a kickstarter; previous one failed at $33k raised. Should be interesting to see if they make it this time.

Cosmic Star Heroine Kickstarter Progress Report

The page & the video for the Cosmic Star Heroine kickstarter are finished! We’re just waiting for Kickstarter to approve everything now. If it gets approved in time, the kickstarter will go live next week. We’ll let you know once it’s been approved and we have a firm date.

 Posted by at 12:55 pm
Aug 052013

Hi, everyone! Robert here.

PAX Prime is coming up at the end of the month & Zeboyd Games will be there… but not as exhibitors. Yes, this is the first time in quite a while that we’ll be at a PAX as regular attendees and not working a booth or giving a presentation at a panel. Should be a nice change of pace from the “Work like crazy for several days and then collapse in a fit of exhaustion and illness” that has been our typical PAX experience.

I’ll be at PAX on Friday & Saturday and Bill will be there for the entire 4-days. Feel free to say hi if you spot us. And if you’re a member of the media and want to meet up with us sometime on Saturday to talk about our games or Cosmic Star Heroine, send us an email and we’ll try to arrange something.

On a completely different note, here’s a great interview over at Edge on the Making of Final Fantasy VI. Really wish it was longer than it was, but I’ll take what I can get.

 Posted by at 3:55 pm
Aug 012013

We’re pleased to announce that we’re participating in a multimedia combo pack extravaganza right now. The VODO H.P. Lovecraft collection is a pay-what-you-want bundle and contains:

Cthulhu Saves the World (Hey, that’s us!)
The Colour Out of Space (German film adaptation of the classic H.P. Lovecraft story)
Audio Book of At the Mountains of Madness and The Rats in the Walls
The Lovecraft eZine 2011 & 2012 Megapacks

and if you pay over the average price (which is something dirt-cheap like a couple dollars right now), you also get:

Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land (Strategy/RPG for Windows & Android)
Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened (Lovecraft themed Adventure game for Windows)
Innsmouth Free Press Issues 1-7
Audio Book of The Shadow over Innsmouth and Special Order

So much Lovecraftian goodness in one bundle! It’s only available for a limited time so buy today!

 Posted by at 9:16 am
Jul 112013

Steam is doing their big Summer Sale right now and all of our games are on sale!

Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 4
Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 3
Cthulhu Saves the World/Breath of Death VII Combo Pack

The combo pack for Precipice of Darkness 3 & 4 is also on sale (just go to the page for 3 or 4 and you’ll find it listed).

Happy bargain hunting!

 Posted by at 10:19 am
Jul 022013

EDIT: Based on feedback, we’ve made a few adjustments to the higher tiers and added a new physical reward.

We’re currently planning on doing a kickstarter for our next RPG, Cosmic Star Heroine, in or around September. Here’s what we’re thinking as far as reward tiers go (note, this is still a work-in-progress and is subject to change).

$1 – Good Will (No reward tier)
$10 – Digital copy of Cosmic Star Heroine
$15 – Digital strategy guide & Zeboyd Games wallpaper & forum avatars (taken from Cosmic Star Heroine & some of our other games)
$20 – Cosmic Star Heroine soundtrack
$25 – Digital copies of all of our previous games on Steam & Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 4 soundtrack
$30 – Digital art book for Cosmic Star Heroine (showing both completed art & also drafts & sketches)
$35 – Second digital copy of the game (share with a friend or have it on more platforms!) & Special Thanks mention in Credits
$50 – Access to the Cosmic Star Heroine beta
$75 – Inclusion in the in-game “online” spy directory (Your name & a short description will appear in Cosmic Star Heroine in the top-secret spy database for all other secret agents to see)
$100 – Cosmic Star Heroine T-Shirt or a collection of Zeboyd Games Posters
$200 – T-Shirt & Poster collection
$300 – Physical book of Molly the Were-Zompire and Epiphany in Spaaace (Does not include T-Shirt & Poster collection)
$400 – Book and either T-Shirt or Poster Collection
$500 – Book, T-Shirt, and Poster collection
$750 – Be a minor NPC in the game
$1000 – “Patron of the Arts” mention in the Credits
$3000 – Be an NPC that can be recruited for the spy base in Cosmic Star Heroine (Note, not playable in combat)

Except in cases where it doesn’t make sense or is otherwise indicated, reward tiers would also include previous tier rewards (for example, you only get 1 inclusion in-game & it just uses the highest tier for that reward). We’d spell everything out in the actual kickstarter so as to avoid confusion.

 Posted by at 11:29 am
Jun 252013

We are pleased to announce that our next game will be called Cosmic Star Heroine!

Here’s a short plot teaser:
Alyssa L’Salle is one of the galactic government’s top agents and always manages to save the day! But when she accidentally uncovers a dark conspiracy, her own government outs her as a legendary spy and the people’s champion! Sure, now she has hordes of adoring fans but every villainous organization she’s ever crossed in her career knows who she is and is out for her blood! Can she save the day once more while she faces her greatest challenge… Everyone!?

Here’s some of the first concept art we drew of the main character!


In this image, you can see some of the tools of the trade that Alyssa uses in her spy work. Her weapon may look like a regular bo but thanks to space age technology, it can also transform into a gun for long range combat and can be spun around to generate a personal force field. Of course, it’s a rather large weapon and not at all a stealthy one so when she isn’t using it, she stores it in her dimensional vortex-containing satchel which holds all sorts of useful spy gadgets (it’s bigger on the inside than it is on the outside, you see).

Here are a few details about the game:

Future sci-fi setting
2D pixel art visuals (but with various improvements over our previous games including bigger and more animated ally sprites)
Created with Unity so that we can cover more platforms
No separate combat screen – combat will occur directly on the same maps that you explore on
Turn-based RPG gameplay that takes the best elements from our past games while adding a few new ideas.
Enemy groups will no longer just stay in one place on maps but will patrol and chase after the player as appropriate
Not a parody but will still have plenty of humor
Players will be able to customize their own spy headquarters by recruiting more agents (think the Suikoden series)
Will be trying to get Hyperduck (who worked with us on our last game) again for the music (they’ve already agreed that they’d like to do it but we haven’t signed anything yet)

We will be doing a kickstarter for the game later this year to help raise funds for development costs but we’ll have more details on that later.

Unlike previous games we’ve worked on, we don’t want to save up news and art for the game just for big sporadic reveals. We’re going to be more open with this game’s development so we will be sharing updates, news, design musings, art, and graphics on a regular basis. Here are some helpful links you’ll want to bookmark or follow to keep up on the game’s development: (Hey, that’s here!)
The Zeboyd Facebook page
The official Zeboyd Twitter feed
The Cosmic Star Heroine Twitter feed
Robert Boyd (Gameplay Designer, Writer, Programmer) Twitter feed
Bill Stiernberg (Artist, Animator, Level Designer) Twitter feed

 Posted by at 10:52 am
Jun 202013

We feel like we’re at a turning point here at Zeboyd Games. We’ve released some fun RPGs over the past few years (and in fact, we just released a new RPG earlier this month which you should definitely play if you haven’t already) but now it’s time to take things up a notch. Now it’s time to get serious.

First up, we’re completely overhauling our RPG engine. XNA is a great set of tools that has served us well, but now that it’s no longer being actively supported by Microsoft and the Xbox 360 is on its way out, it’s time to move on. We looked into Monogame and though it has many strong points, in the end, we’ve decided to go with Unity for our next RPG. Unity is a very popular multi-platform development tool that is being used by more and more developers each year. In recent months, we’ve seen announcements for Unity support by both Sony (PS4 & Vita) & Nintendo (WiiU, though sadly no 3DS support yet) in addition to the platforms Unity already supports (PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android). No promises yet on which platforms we’ll be supporting with our next game, but in addition to PC, we’d especially like to add Mac, PS4, and Vita to our list of systems that can play our games.

Creating a new RPG engine on Unity is a lot of work (which we started earlier this week) but won’t be nearly as hard as starting from scratch since we do have our old RPG engine to use as a reference point. However, we’re not going to stop with just replicating our old engine’s functionality in Unity. Some of the improvements we’re hoping to add include:

Larger, more animated sprites (think Chrono Trigger).
More interactive environments.
Improved User Interface.
A particle system for enhanced visual effects.
On-map battles (no separate battle screen) & enemy groups that detect & chase the player.

We also have some fun ideas for gameplay (picking and choosing some of the best elements from our past games while adding some new ideas as well) but we’ll save the details on those for later.

We will be doing a kickstarter later this year for our next game. We will, of course, be using our own funds from royalties of our past games to finance the game as much as possible, but a successful kickstarter will give us some extra freedom to make the game that much better (can afford more development time, an awesome huge soundtrack from Hyperduck, etc.) and generally relieve some of the “Are we going to be able to finish this before we run out of money?” stress. Details on the game & the kickstarter will come out over the following months but for now, I can tell you that the game is all-new (not connected to any of our past games or anyone else’s existing IP), the game’s acronym is CSH, it’s a distant future sci-fi spy RPG starring a female protagonist,  and it’s not a parody. There will still be plenty of humor in the game but we’re going to focus on making the plot & characters deeper & more interesting than our past games. Basically, we’re shooting for a Lunar or Chronicles of Prydain vibe with the story.

These are exciting times here at Zeboyd Games. It still boggles my mind that in about 3 and a half years, we’ve gone from being casual hobbyists to a full-time 2-man indie studio that has released four full-fledged RPGs. Thank you to everyone who has supported us in the past; the best is yet to come! :D

 Posted by at 4:54 pm