Jul 19

July Update

CodeminionAs you see lately I’m not posting  as often as I used to. That is because I’m very busy both at work and in personal live. Anyway here is a small update on what’s currently going on with Codeminion and our games.

After a short soft-launch on GameClubCafe and a two week exclusivity period on BigFish, Saqqarah is slowly being launched on other portals. So far we are only on iWin but if everything goes well we should launch on some more portals in the coming weeks. I’m very interested to see how it all goes as recently I find many of the distribution channels… unpredictable. To point just a few weird events (without giving any names) one of our distributors decided to delay the release of Saqqarah and StoneLoops! until we decide to drop the price to $ 9.99. This happened just two days before the scheduled launch date. Yesterday we received a letter from another distributor who found 6 issues with Saqqarah that need to be fixed before the game could be launched. Apart from some simple spelling bugs in game we were asked to drop some major parts of the game’s functionally. This was a big surprise because other distributors that already launched the game did not complain about anything. Additionally another portal recently sent a mass mail to its developers and basically revealed all developer emails to everyone in the process. I’m sure you know who that is if you received this email…

Is it only me or there really is some kind of weird tension that is lately plaguing the casual games industry? Many developers and distributors are trying so hard that they all make many mistakes. Oh well, let’s not dwell on this – better let’s get back to crunching next games! 😉 Speaking of which, we’ve recently launched a next second party project, so we are now working on two external games. Unfortunately we still don’t know what our next big in-house project (or maybe projects?) will be.

Saqqarah Official WebsiteIf you’re subscribed to our newsletter at www.codeminion.com. I’m sure that you didn’t miss the recent launch of Saqqarah official website at www.saqqarahthegame.com. The website has a nice trailer movie for the game but unfortunately if you’re looking for SaqPacks you’ll have to wait a little longer as making a new set of 504 levels takes a long time…

Another new thing is that we’ve launched a polish version of Saqqarah which can be downloaded from the official website. This was done as a test of our engine’s localization features. Everything went quite smooth but it also took quite a lot of our time. This localization involved re-recording all of the voices, making special fonts and translating all the texts and graphics. Anyway the FIGS (French, Italian, German, Spanish) set of localizations is now under external development and it should be ready in several weeks. I plan to write a whole post about localizing Saqqarah and about our engine.

The last thing I would like to update you on is the Mac versions of Saqqarah and StoneLoops!. It appears that (if nothing changes) Saqqarah will have a Mac beta sooner than StoneLoops!. Don’t ask me why, I wasn’t involved in any of those porting projects. If everything goes well we’ll be launching the beta of Saqqarah Mac version on Monday or Tuesday. I will post about it as soon as it is ready so be sure to check back soon.

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3 Responses to “July Update”

  1. Roman says:

    Is there any portal that sells for $9.99 without any kind of subscription?

  2. Matt says:

    I found the information about dropping functionality flabbergasting.

    I tried putting myself in Maciej’s shoes trying to imagine what I’d do in this situation if I was asked by one portal – out of many – to cut content from my game.

    I think I would have to refuse… I wouldn’t want my own company’s reputation tarnished.

  3. Nero_ says:

    Don’t know much about casual games (though I just love Saqqarah), but it seems like a big business these days. Hard to find the jewels maybe. Also I added a page about this game at the quite newly started website at http://www.giantbomb.com/ (run by former Gamespot employees) so hopefully it will draw some attention.

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