During the Global Game Jam here at Cogswell, one team decided to create their game for the iPhone. After 2 intense days of creating the game, the team published the game Sumo Stealth through team member and alumni Tobiah Mark’s company Yobonja. We caught up with Tobiah to ask him about his experience both with the design and the publishing.
Your name, your position on the team and other members of the team?
Tobiah Marks – Design/Voice of Skunky
Other team members:
George Lam – Programming
Seth Robles - Art
Madison Parker – Art
To read the team’s blog during the Global Game Jam, click here.
What is the name of the game and what is the game play like?
The name of the game is Sumo Stealth (available for free on the Apple App Store: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sumo-stealth/id353642050?mt=8). The game only has a simple one button control scheme, tap the screen to change disguise. The story is that a sumo wrestler is trapped in a shopping mall full of roaming gangs of Punks and Monks, and he must sneak past them by disguising himself as one or the other. The game speeds up and gets harder over time, and goes on until you’re caught in the wrong disguise. Your score is the number of seconds you lasted before being caught.
What was your inspiration for the game?
Going in we all wanted to make a simple game, focusing in on one or two gameplay elements and just trying to make that fun. The idea we came up with was a player trying to sneak past groups of Monks and Punks. We boiled the whole idea down to its simplest form where all you do is change your character’s disguise. After we told the idea to the rest of the Game Jam groups, somebody mentioned the Gamma4 competition going on at the same time looking for one-button game submissions. This had been going on for a while, but the deadline happened to be that same Sunday night Game Jam was done. So we ran with the idea and made it a one-button game so we could also submit to it.
In case you’re wondering “Why Punks and Monks? Why do they hate each other?” Well, at the Global Game Jam 2010 at Cogswell College, one of the requirements for the game is that the game must contain a Monk, a Punk, or a Skunk. So we decided to go with Monks vs. Punks. Why make it a sumo wrestler? Because it’s funny. We named him Skunky though, just so we can say we hit all three.
At what point did you decide to make an iPhone game? When did you decide to submit it to the App store?
Within the first 15 minutes of starting work on the game, we decided to make it for the iPhone. One of the first things we thought after setting up was “This game would make a cool iPhone app”. Well, George had a copy of Unity iPhone, and Yobonja (my company) has a developer account, so everything just worked out too nicely not to do it.
What was the most rewarding part of making the game?
The team. We had a great team, and we all had similar visions of what we wanted out of the game. It was great to just have everything click and fall into place without any last-minute drama or design arguments or struggle to complete the game on time.
What was the most challenging?
I’m not sure. I’m still impressed that Madison made a whole 3D mall full of assets in 2 days, or that George had the whole game working in prototype form late Friday night, etc. But I’d say probably turning Seth’s awesome drawings into a animated character, and trying to set to look correct in Unity since none of us were animators.
Tell us a little bit about your newest game, Snack Time for Caterpillar?
My company, Yobonja, just released Snack Time for Caterpillar. It’s an iPhone game where you move around a cute little caterpillar on a leaf trying to eat as much food as possible while trying to avoid dragonflies that come to bother you. You control the caterpillar by tilting your iPhone/iPod touch/iPad then once you’ve built up enough energy by eating you can engage monster mode and turn into a dragonfly eating machine! The game has social features like global highscores, awards, and facebook/twitter integration powered by AGON Online. It is available now for free on the iTunes app store. http://apps.yobonja.com/snacktime