Even in their inauspicious mobile-focused beginnings, it was clear from the start that Toronto indie Cabybara Games had a keen eye for pushing the visual boundaries on whatever platform they were given. The pixels of the handset and later iPhone version of their original debut puzzler Critter Crunch popped aggressively with a pastel palette against its warmer autumnal backgrounds, an art direction that helped earn the game its fair share of mobile awards.
More recently given the chance to bring that sensibility to the PlayStation 3, though, the team took the risk of not simply cheaply upscaling their vision to the wide-screen, but to give the game a top to toe graphic overhaul and create a full HD-res 2D animated game.
The results -- put plainly -- are basically staggering, with the soft and surreal wonder of Studio Ghibli-esque backdrops underscoring the hectic hand-animated critter-bursts on top, and are even more impressive when you learn that they're not the work of (as you might assume) a field of tirelessly slaving outsourced animators. In fact, nearly all of what you see in the game is largely the output of just two compatriots (or -- as Capy co-founder and president Nathan Vella terms them -- '2 radical dudes'): Nick "Qiqo" Stephan and Sylvain "Sylve" Coutouly, respectively responsible for character animation and background/world map art.
Documenting just what heights a tiny team can reach with vision and proper passion, then, posted here is a rare look into the conception and evolution of the world of Krunchatoa and its creatures within (and a special bonus look at main character Biggs invading other Sony/PlayStation classics), alongside the theatrical-quality animation produced by Capy to surround the launch of the game, available now on the PlayStation Network (with the launch of its free demo version due tomorrow, Oct. 22nd).
Before the art, though, Capy's awesomely cinematic launch trailer shows just what you can expect from the finished product: a single or multiplayer evolution on Data East's cult classic puzzler Magical Drop with, appropriate to its name and gluttonous lead, a food-chain chain-system where each critter can only be fed to another progressively larger.
Original Biggs concepts by Capy artist Tri Vuong, prior to Sony's greenlight
Nick "Qiqo" Stephan takes over Biggs' design, and brings him into the world of other Sony (and fellow indie) games -- can you name them all?
More prospective consumable creatures from Krunchatoa's world, and a scattered few from its backgrounds
Roughing out Sylvain "Sylve" Coutouly's scenery with production notes, and an early overview of Krunchatoa
Scenes from the finished game: single-player, cutscenes, and versus multi-
Finally, the trailer that capitalized on the rainbow-barfing craze
See sample pages from this book at Wink. I love arcades, I love board games, I love pixel art. And Kemble’s Cascade ties them all together beautifully with a unique game mechanic that simulates a scrolling video game playfield. Everything in the box is made with a love for classic games and it shows. From […]
Ghosts, witches and werewolves! Trick, treat and boo! This special edition of Blue Orange Games’ Spot It! is perfect for the days leading up to Halloween. Like the original Spot It!, the circular cards have several different pictures and words printed in bright colors and easy-to-read fonts. Also like the original, the fast-moving game comes […]
Margaret writes, “Esteemed NYC game-maker Kevin Cancienne (part of the team behind highly adored Drop 7) is launching Home Free, an utterly unique dog exploration game. It’s Minecraft, but you’re a dog, and everything’s beautiful.”
Shake, stir, and muddle your way to delicious homemade cocktails with this must-have bar set. Expect only the finest quality tools from MakersKit — enabling you to unleash your inner mixologist.Top 12 Favorite Things of 2014, Sunset MagazineQuart-size vintage-style Mason jar shakerRetro double jigger for accurate measurementsStrainer & spouts for a mixologist-style smooth pourHardwood muddler […]
The Lytro Illum dares to be different, boasting even more robust features than its first generation predecessor and a sleek design reminiscent of professional DSLRs. What’s so cool about it? Most cameras capture the position of light rays, producing a statoc 2D image.
SitePoint Premium is the ultimate e-learning library for web developers, designers, and digital professionals. Famous for their web development books written by industry leaders, they’ve expanded their content library to include in-depth video courses and short, handy screencasts partnering with A Book Apart and UX Mastery. Whatever you want to achieve in your web career, […]