Friday, November 22nd, 2013
After several months of part-time development, we are finally launching the website for Tetropolis! On this site you’ll not only find the latest information about Tetropolis, but we will also be keeping dev blogs to keep you up to date on the development of the game. We’re currently working on improving our site design and branding so please be patient (we’ve only got one web developer!). I’d also like to take this opportunity to tell you a little bit about the game and some of the history behind it.
Tetropolis was born from an offhand remark. As the team sat together coming up with ideas for different games to prototype, we started discussing the ridiculous trend of merging genres to create a game. Having our own go at it, we combined a falling block puzzle game with a Metroidvania and gave birth to the ridiculous term Tetroidvania. We all had a good laugh at it imagining the player being a piece from one of these falling block puzzle games who would explore a world heavily reminiscent of an old Metroid game. Though begun as a joke, there was something there at the core concept of such a bizarre genre bender that hooked deep into our subconscious. In meetings even months after the idea had arisen, Jeff would joke “We’re going to make that Tetroidvania someday.”
One day I decided to create the very first prototype for the game, which I ended up showing off to a couple of friends later that night. A simple block puzzle platformer with graphics straight out of MS Paint. We laughed at how ridiculous it was to roll around as a square in the game. It never really incorporated any other aspects of falling block puzzle games.
The prototype was shelved as we worked on other more “promising” ideas which mostly involved strategic multiplayer games of deception (some which may one day come to fruition). Even though we had decided multiplayer was the direction we were moving in, I kept working on the Tetroidvania in my off hours. At first it was a mental exercise to see what I could do to change it into something more than just a bland Metroidvania re-skinning. Eventually it became a full side project that I began to polish and shape alongside our main project.
Over time, however, we started to lose steam on our current game. Running into design problems and lacking a really strong idea to drive us caused development to slow to a crawl. One day I mentioned that I had continued to work on our Tetroidvania prototype and showed the team the tech demo I had created. Crazy ideas started flying and the team members began to contribute to the design and development. We still didn’t know what kind of game this would be, but the possibilities were intriguing.
From there on, the game evolved organically and became something that I don’t think any of us had intended to make. Some of our team members started taking classes to learn how to use certain tools more efficiently, and I started taking unpaid leave from my job in order to get more work done on the game. It was obvious at this point that we had found something worth working on and were dedicated on seeing it through to completion. The game we have created has inspired us and turned into something unique and totally awesome.
We’ve been working on this game on our spare time for about half a year now, though the original prototype was made well back in the beginning of 2013. We are entirely committed to the project an are dedicating our personal time and money to seeing it become real. The current plan is to begin showing the game at conventions in 2014 and get it into the public’s hands with a tentative 2015 release (subject to change). We’ll be documenting our experiences along the way and working with the community to make it the best we possibly can.
Won’t you join us in building Tetropolis?