7 October 2015

Discovering Star Wars Rebels

Thanks to my friend William I recently discovered Star Wars Rebels.

I heard about the series before but wasn’t attracted to it because of the deception the Clone Wars 3D series was. I’m not far in but episode 4 definitely got me hooked. So my suggestion would be to watch up to this one, if you don’t like it then stop - or try harder :)

Definitely feeling the hype increasing for the new movie coming in about 2 months and that’s a great way to wait. I really like the editing and some character designs. Some characters are definitely better designed than other. For instance most of the characters from the movies are really well represented: wookies and storm troopers mainly. Others look less detailed and especially human ones.

I really like Sabine’s design because of her coloured armour and hairs but I am a bit disappointed by her Boba Fet type of helmet. I would have enjoyed an original one, like they did for the Inquisitor. The series is trying new stuffs that I personally don’t find shocking so why sticking with the helmet?

Unlike Sonic Rebels (apologies to people who likes it…) Star Wars Rebels is matching the series mythos with some obvious references here and there and is definitely worth watching. Can’t wait to finish season 1 to start season 2. Watch a trailer of the first season here.

Thank you William ;D 

15 May 2014

Pokémon Art Academy

One of the games I worked on at Headstrong Games during the past year has been officialy announced last week: Pokémon Art Academy for the Nintendo 3DS.

It has been a tremendous experience to work with Nintendo and the Pokémon Company on such a big license. We really hope the game will match fans expectations.

17 December 2012

Is it really a "Happy" 25th Birthday for Megaman?

When you like a series, especially a long and old one, you wait its anniversaries with impatience because you know that some big announcements are going to happen. Rockman is one of them and today is its 25th anniversary. 

On this day a lot of people are talking about the hard year for the franchise, especially the cancellation of Megaman Universe and Rockman DASH 3. Also I would like to remind here that Rockman EXE Operate Shooting Star never left Japan and that Europe never had Megaman Star Force 3. No need to say why all the fans were looking to Capcom waiting this anniversary hoping for a game announce. It finally came... well kind of. 

It started with a couple of remix CDs, the excellent We Are Rockmen! 2 and the promising Rockman HOLIC and a bundle of all Rockman OST ever. Then the update of the 20th anniversary Artbook and finally a game! But not what fan wanted, a mobile game: Rockman Xover. So far available in Japan only, the game surfs the new wave of F2P card games. Nevertheless, even if it wasn't really announced for the anniversary it gave a bit of hope back to the fans who wished and prayed that Capcom gave a bit of interest back into the Blue Bomber. 

Then it came, the game for the anniversary: Street Fighter X Megaman. The game is great really, but it is ... a fan-game. It means a fan made it, showed it to Capcom who had nothing best to offer for the 25th anniversary and saw an opportunity. I'm not complaining about the game, really. It is a good fan-game, probably one of the best, that anyone can have for free. What is shocking me is that most of the fans over the Internet seems to accept it like if it is the BEST gift Capcom could have made. Eventually today were announce Megaman 1-6 re-release on the US eShop  and some avatar costumes for the Xbox 360. It is like Capcom is trying to hide the lack of quality with quantity.

Capcom has nothing best to offer to its millions of fans but a fan-game. I am really worring about the future of the series. 

Anyway, happy birthday Rockman! You're still the best :)

12 December 2012

"You bloody Nintendo fanboy"

There are some recurent topics in gaming discussions. Among friends, professionals or just players they always generate the same reaction: a big argument. Well the one I want to talk about is often taken as an insult: "you bloody Nintendo fanboy". 

I heard this so many times. First it was during the Sega vs Nintendo period, then the Playtation vs Nintendo and now in the fight between all the platforms. 

Everytime it was really hard to explain why the Nintendo fan base was strong and still growing. Yesterday I saw these pictures on Tiny Cartridge's tumblr

Now I have an answer.

The original author is http://imvencible.tumblr.com/

18 December 2011

As time goes by ...

GDC logoGDC is now long gone and a lot of thing happened until now. I didn't took the time to keep feeding the live coverage of the GDC whilst I was there. The truth is that everything was going really fast during and after the GDC.

I talked a little about my final year student project: Beyond. The team and I decided to took advantage of my presence at the GDC to try to meet as much peoples as possible. By 'peoples' I mean publishers and developers. The objective was to get as much feedback a possible. Of course we dreamt to hit somebody attention and to get a serious offer about our game but the demo was just a prototype with visible colliders, some placeholders, etc.

Getting some appointments was not so hard. We thought that it would be harder to meet somebody from Microsoft or Valve. Actually they are really open to meet students, graduates, juniors, amateurs, etc. And it sounds quite logical to me now as they have a lot to win by doing so. Finally I ended with a dozen of interviews to make. The feedback were all interesting and this was a really nice experience. It is not everyday that you can meet some peoples who wants to know about your projects.

As you can imagine my week at San Francisco went very fast. The day I had to sprint from conferences to interviews to the show floor. The evening I stayed out visiting the city or spending some time with indie game developers until noon. Then I got back to my hotel debriefing the day to my team in France to let them know how went my interviews. Long days huh !

beyond logoWell returned in France, no time to rest Beyond went directly in its final phase. At the same time I had to write down a report of my week for the association who organized the contest that I won which sent me to GDC. I could publish the report here but unfortunately it's fully write in French...

Finally the project was over which puts an end to my student year. I moved back to the south of France in the city of Montpellier to do my end of studies internship at Ubisoft Montpellier Studio. There I was a Game Designer intern. I finished the production of The Adventures of Tintin and the Secret of the Unicorn for Xbox 360, Playstation 3 and Nintendo Wii . And I worked on the pre-production step of Killer Freaks from Outer Space, announced at the last E3, for the upcoming Nintendo Wii U.

Six months later, the internship was over and I'm now unemployed. I had the opportunity to move in to Oxford. As I wanted to break into the UK industry for a long time, I decided to do it. So here I am, actively looking for a position in the UK.

kazzed logoI now have some time to spend on my indie projects, on my website and thankfully on my blog ! Woohoo ! Thus I will talk about Kazz.Ed which I realized that I never talked in here. It is the game I did with some awesome peoples at the Global Game Jam 2011 in Paris. The game received a bit of interest so we decided to release it first on Xbox Live Indie Game and perhaps on PC. Almost one year later we are close to release it. I will talk about it later. Also last Summer I participated to a Ludum Dare game compo ! It was quite an experience and I wanted to do one for a long long time so debriefing about this famous game jam sounds interesting to me.

To finish this long "Hey I'm back!" post, I invite you to visit our fresh new website for Beyond which was finalized today. The website is here to celebrate the Artistic Direction award that we won at a French event called Stage One. It is organized by the mobile games publisher/developer Playsoft.

Next time I will try to do shorter post, I promise ! :)

8 October 2011

Good Bye Steve

Steve Jobs, former CEO and co-funder of Apple, died at the age of 56 years old from a pancreatic cancer.

Yes, I know, the whole web is on fire about this topic, which seems to bother some peoples that don't understand why he was such a great man. Actually, a majority of his fans doesn't know him at all, except from his image in the media. Neither do I. But what peoples love about him, and I'm not talking about Apple-fans or Mac-users, is the mind of the character. Of course he was not the lonely man behind big projects like the iBook, the MacBook, the iMac, iTunes, the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad and all the other stuffs Apple made. But he certainly was a pillar, and a man full of vision. Moreover, some Apple products change the computing industry and even more. For instance iTunes was a leader in digital distribution that we are all using today for movies, books, games, etc. But this is another topic.

A common quote is saying that people that can predict what will be THE next thing before it happens are visionary. Beside that Jobs always claimed that his job was to find what will be essential for Mister Everybody in his everyday life whereas he doesn't know that this could exist. And that's actually what was particularly criticized at Apple for the iPad. But another common quote is saying that back in the past if you had asked the peoples what they wanted, they would have answered a faster horse not a car.

Finally, Jobs was a very good speaker. This is also why its genius looks real.  Among all his speeches that we can find on Youtube, there's a part of the duo interview with Bill Gates back in 2007 just after the iPhone announcement where he said something that I feel totally true because of my work that is to make games in an industry based on passion. Please enjoy this short video:

Here is an article at Forbes about what Steve Jobs taught us in ten points . It is principally addressed to peoples who cares about production but it can interest anybody actually.

I will finish this posthumous post in the most common way because this sentences are today everywhere on the internet because this man has succeeded in touching millions of peoples all around the world. So Steve, we will stay hungry, we will stay foolish. Thank you.

Documentary about Steve Jobs career (2010): here
Steve Jobs famous speech at Stanford (2005): here

28 February 2011

Road to GDC day 0 - "if you're going to San Francisco..."

First day in SF, I do not suffer of the jet lag as expected. The trip was very long. After you watched 4 movies you start to ask yourself what you can do to make this feels quicker. And do not speak about "sleeping". I can't sleep more than normally without a jet lag so I slept as much as I can but it wasn't enough.

Once in SF, it was really funny to see Starbucks full of peoples with video game t-shirt. I finally took the time to organize my week and between several meetings to present my current project at ENJMIN (Beyond Project) and presentations (tutorials, conferences, etc.).

San Francisco looks just like it is in Crazy Taxi without Offsprings musics :)

Tomorrow things are going to be a bit more serious (the real serious step is Tuesday with the first meeting).

And finally, just to give a meaning to the title ...