Author Archive

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone!   I don’t know what costumes you all are rocking, but my 14 month old son is going as the Hero guy this Halloween (see below).  My wife Steph made him the costume and it turned out really well.   So Owen has been crawling around the house in Hero getup and generally saving the day everywhere he goes.

We’re still trucking away on our projects.  Shifty is nearly ready to be released, ArmorGames has generously decided to pick it up.  We also have found a sponsor for Pixel 2, so I think that will be out soon.  Bubble Tanks Tower Defense 2 is still under development, Eric has been working every day on it.  It really is a HUGE project- with 20 levels and 15 modes available for each map, you can play 300 unique games of BTTD 2- that’s a whole hell of a lot and you realize it when you’re painstakingly trying to put it together.  We have the level select screen nearly completed, so I should be able to post some screenshots soon and get your reactions.

As a side note, just because we’re less active on the blog doesn’t mean posts now are open to the ongoing blog war.  We still have a post for that, so try to keep blog posts semi-relevant.

Also, sorry I’ve been less than good about moderating posts and accepting the pending ones, I’ll try to step it up and get comments out sooner.

Finally, thanks every for your support shown in the last post, it means a lot to us!

Owen is the Hero Guy

The Future of Hero Interactive

Hero Interactive

Some of you may have noticed (*COUGH*everyone*COUGH*) that it’s been quite a while since we’ve last posted.   Sometimes that doesn’t really mean anything, we could have been in a month long game of Team Fortress 2.   But alas, this time it reflects the massive changes we’ve been undergoing at Hero and just how little time we’ve had for communicating to you all and sharing what we’ve been going through.

Here Interactive recently has been undergoing a MASSIVE scale back, bringing us back almost 4 or so years ago.  Unfortunately we’ve had had to let nearly all the staff go, only Eric and myself (Jared) are left.  We’ve also moved out of our office and have set ourselves up so that we can’t work on projects with developers in different locations.

This is primarily a result of Zoo-Opolis’ poor performance.  We severely underestimated how much work it would take, it ended up costing twice as much as planned to get it out the door, and once that was done we had no resources left for updates, patches, new content, and especially marketing.  This put us in a tough spot financially which left us with very little time to spend on each project, and when other challenges came up, we had no resources left over to help us overcome them.  It’s tough, but you live, you learn, and you keep moving forward.

We are still trying to figure out what the future of Hero Interactive will be, but we plan on sticking around.  We are still moving forward with Bubble Tanks Tower Defense 2 and it’s really starting to come together.  We also plan on releasing Shifty and Pixel 2 in the future, both of which are in their final stages.  We are also looking for opportunities to bring on our friends and past coworkers on projects where possible.

Despite our struggles, I’m still incredibly proud of the work we’ve done this past year.  Zoo-Opolis was MASSIVE and just completing such a huge and feature rich project was a huge achievement.  We also put out more games this year than any year previous.  Although not all of them are as big as hits as say, Bubble Tanks, I was really proud of the quality we brought to the table and I loved each and every one.

Our fans have been extremely supportive, and it is because of you all that we have been such as success.  Hopefully we can continue that with Bubble Tanks TD 2 in the coming months!  Thank you everyone!

- Jared

P.S. – Now that we are wrapping up our scaleback, I hope to be posting more on here.  Not as much as before (it’s hard to do weekly comics without an artist as awesome as KC), but hopefully enough to keep you all updated on where we are at!

Bubble Tanks Tower Defense 2 (BTTD2) Update #2

Bubble Tanks TD 2

Whelp, we’re continuing to crank on Bubble Tanks Tower Defense 2 and it’s really starting to come together.  We’ve been working on different screens such as the Achievement Screen and Level Select Screen and we’re now bringing them all together and hooking them up.  We’ve also got a number of modes working such as Random Mode (you don’t know which wave is coming until it arrives) and we have fixed path levels implemented.  Although you can’t tell from the screenshots below, we have tower targeting implemented (you can change how towers select enemy targets).

One thing that I think everyone is going to love is our new wave display.  Wave icons are more clear and when you roll over them you can see the composition of the incoming wave as well as the total bonuses you will get if you send that wave (and all others before it) ahead early.  Also note: not only do you get more points for sending waves early, but you also get more Bubbles as a bonus.  Just be careful you don’t send more than you can handle as you can get seriously burned!

BTTD2 Screenshot

Description text and icons are still missing, but you can get an idea of how the interface is getting laid out.

Dead Metal is RELEASED!

Dead Metal Banner

Great news everyone!  Dead Metal is RELEASED!  You can go HERE to play the game on Kongregate.com!

Dead Metal is a top down shooter set in space, built off our powerful BT3 game engine. In fact, summing it up as Bubble Tanks in space with Star Forge art would be a pretty good way to describe it. The game was a result of just tinkering with the game engine and seeing what we could do. Once we were flying around launching missiles and blowing stuff up, we agreed- this is awesome.

The game features over 30 unique enemy types across 5 races as well as 10 avatar ships with extremely varied weapons. The last mission is a survival mission, see how long you can last as hordes of enemy capital ships come down upon you and get the best score possible.

The game saves after each mission completed.

Enjoy!

Scrap Metal, FTW!

The Big Pixel 2 Update!

Pixel 2

I’ve been threatening to do a big post on Pixel 2 for a loooong time now, so when trying to come up with some tidbits to give you guys this week on our upcoming projects, I decided now might be the time to finally make good on that promise.  I’m a little frustrated as I REALLY wanted want to do a Pixel 2 trailer- motionless pixels are just dots and don’t do the game justice, but unfortunately the video was coming out choppy due to Camtasia awesomeness so pictures are all you’re going to get.  But… I have lots of pictures!

Jimmy has been working on and off on Pixel 2 for a long time, and believe it or not he’s actually kinda close to wrapping this project up.  We gone through roughly 50,000 changes, adding things, remove items, changing menus, and so on.  The latest build of Pixel 2 has a number of key features and some differences from the original Pixel game:

  • The casual feeling still remains, and we have an all new music track from the original composer for Pixel 1!
  • There are 4 “worlds” to play in with unique enemies.  The game length is still pretty comparable to Pixel 1.
  • Between each world you can now choose special abilities and there are lots to choose from!  Fire, acid, lightning, exploding, mines, and more!  Each ability changes the game somewhat and also creates pretty new effects!
  • You now have “life.”  You can die from getting hit, but you don’t lose life when you shoot as you did in Pixel 1.  The flip side of this is that whereas in Pixel 1 game progress was based on your life, in here it isn’t.  You can’t get stuck at a point in the game where you just can’t get past.
  • Combos are now represented in the top left corner and are a bit more clearer.  They determine your score, whenever you get hit they are reset.
  • All bullets are piercing now, they pass through enemies.
  • Finally, you can beat the game to unlock a survival mission where you play for as long as you can without getting hit once!  It’s really hard, but it’s fun to compare scores.

Hopefully I’ll have some information on a release date soon!

Pixel 2 - Screenshot 4

This game has bosses and more of them, including this fun guy from World 1...

Pixel 2 - Screenshot 2

Fire is one of my favorite abilities you can get. Once just one pixel hits an enemy they continue to burn. Oh, and it looks pretty...

Pixel 2 - Screenshot 3

Lightning isn't too bad either...

Pixel 2 - Screenshot 1

There are actually more abilities than shown here. Between each world you get to adjust your selections to try new things out. All of them are freaking awesome, so you don't really have to sweat too much about getting something not totally face melting.

Friday Comic (The Wedding!)

So KC isn’t here today to give you an awesome Friday comic, so it’s up to good ‘ol me (Jared) to deliver top notch award winning comic art. I’m up to the task, but in case you were wondering why KC isn’t around, it’s because she’s getting FREAKING MARRIED!   Congratulations KC and Chris, we’re so happy for the both of you!

Congrats!

Scrap Metal is now Dead Metal…

Dead Metal Banner

Usually when we try to come up with a name for our games, it’s a pretty difficult process.  With over 14,000 Flash games coming out a year, clever and succinct names tend to get picked up pretty quickly.  So once we have something we like and we’ve checked the popular portals for any other games with the same name, we usually high five each other and go with it.

Whelp, as it turns out we found out last night that Scrap Metal is actually a full blown game developed by Slick Entertainment… so back to the drawing board.  We had to come up with a new name.

We chose “Dead Metal” for several reasons:

  1. It’s a play on Death Metal, a type of hardcore rock.  And as I’ve said over and over again this game is all about hardcore.
  2. It would be easy to change our logo as we would only need to change the top word.
  3. Who cares about titles anyway?  We just want to blow stuff up!

So Scrap Metal is now called Dead Metal.  Now you all know. :)

Scrap Metal is now Dead Metal

As you can see in the figure above, Scrap Metal is now called Dead Metal.

Nearly Completed…

Scrap Metal

Right now we’re getting down to the finishing touches on Scrap Metal making it very close to DONE!  As soon as tomorrow we will begin looking for a sponsor and hopefully soon after have a release date!

Hold on to your butts because a lot of explosions are on the way…

Scrap Metal, FTW!

Scrap Metal Update #2

Scrap Metal

You might not actually believe this, but we’re actually drawing close to getting Scrap Metal DONE already.  And that means three things:

1) You guys are about to get your faces metaphorically (not literally) blown sideways off your skulls by the sheer amount of exploding awesomeness.

2) We have pics for the blog.

3) I can take a nap soon.

All of these things are so freaking fantastic, I had to immediately set game development aside and let you know about them.  And while I was at it, I thought I’d give you those pics from #2…

More updates soon!

Scrap Metal Screenshot #6

Nothing says "hardcore" like a a skull, spine, dark angel wings and swords.

Scrap Metal Screenshot #5

Explosions and general mayhem is a key part of the game.

The Open Ended Poll!

No pre-selected options to choose from, just leave a comment and let us know!

What are your top 3 favorite flash games EVER, from ANYONE?  :D

Scrap Metal Update #1

Scrap Metal

We’ve been continuing our work on Scrap Metal and in just the past week things have really been coming together for the project.  We’ve fleshed out a lot of the game, completed all of the enemies and player controlled ships, and are beginning to set up missions.  Much of the game has a very “heavy metal” kind of look (See the settings screen below) and we’ve really been adding a lot of style to the game.  As I’ve said before we are building this off of the Bubble Tanks 3 game engine.  Starting out, we weren’t completely sure how it was going to turn out.  The answer is “freaking awesome.”

In fact, I’d go so far as to say that I almost wish BT3 was set in space, because it’s THAT good.  Locking and rockets and all the explosions just look so much prettier.

The game will allow you to select missions that consist of a number of waves of enemies that teleport in, some missions are optional.  Choose a mission, purchase or select your ship, and then go in to blow up some @#%&! ships.  The game features 5 enemy races with distinct ships and weapon styles such as the Botizens- a self-aware robotic race that prefers to swarm you with drones and small fighter factories or the Eanova- a powerful insectoid race with powerful cruisers and battleships (see below).  The game features 10 different ships for you to purchase, all of which can melt the face off of entire armadas of warships.  And there are missiles, LOTS of missiles.

Anyways, here are some teaser images that we’ve been working on, hopefully next week we’ll have a trailer for you and you can see for yourself. :)

Scrap Metal Screenshot

Oh noes!  Watch out for those missiles!

Scrap Metal Screenshot

Here’s the Settings Menu that is under construction and being worked on.  Just wanted to show off the heavy metal look.

Retired Wizard Defense is Released!

Retired Wizard Defense

It’s out!  Can you believe it?  Finally, you can now play Retired Wizard Defense over at AGame.com.  Go check it out and drop some toilets on some goblins.  My best score is just over 10,000!

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