Hi guys, Anya as usual! The TM team is at an interesting point at the moment, with circumstances being such that we are in a bit of a limbo, with work to do but more mostly in the realms of gathering ourselves together, straightening out our resources and doing some thoughtful planning for the road ahead – which will be interesting, and which I can’t wait to tell you about… As I mentioned in my previous post, we were in Bristol over the last few days, which was a whirlwind adventure. It never ceases to amaze me that we get out of our road trips alive. How many other people go on holiday with their mother, their boyfriend and their boss, who is dating their mother… and you see them nearly all of the time… and the alcohol is flowing freely… and everyone’s very, very stressed… Anyway, we somehow didn’t argue, and I think we’ve got a lot from it – and a lot to reflect upon. On Wednesday afternoon I had a look over the blog again, and although it made me smile a bit it’s actually a pretty patchy picture of the rollercoaster journey Total Monkery has taken […]
So, the TM roadtrip is over, and we can go home and back to work! Roadtrip, you say… we didn’t even know about a roadtrip! Well, that is in part why we were up in Bristol in the first place… to talk PR. Total Monkery is a family business, and as such our commitment to our cause has a certain familial ferociousness. Unfortunately, we are also a bit insular, and a tiny bit rubbish at promoting our unspeakable awesomeness. Enter Natalie of Press Space, our new guru, keeping us on the social media straight and narrow! We’ll be receiving a report from our PR audit soon, at which point we will unveil our Plan for World Domination! Some of this plan will involve a) better explaining our goals and what we’re about, b) explaining exactly what we have been doing for the past year and c) expunging all the hopelessly ambiguous ‘TBA’s from our game concept catalogue. So watch this space. The other reason we were in Bristol is money, but in the interests of mystery and suspense I won’t talk about that until we know the news. But I will say, good luck to everyone! Especially Plymothians… up the […]
A normal office: Employee: Hmm, someone seems to have stolen some of my lunch. How rude and outrageous! Do I say anything? Am I inviting conflict by making a fuss? No, it’s my damn lunch and I want recompense! “Excuse me, team, anyone know who stole my lunch?” Perpetrator: There is no way I’m fessing up now, ooh look how interesting my work is… Rest of office: *crickets chirp* Employee: Bloody scavengers, what do they think I’ll go mental grumble grumble mutter bad feeling… In a Family Business… Employee: “HEY GUYS WHERE’S MY MALT LOAF GONE?” Employer: “Oh, that was me, I had a craving!” Employee: “…Fair deal, mum.”
I thought I’d share with you a little secret to Total Monkery productivity. It’s called the Mockery and Contempt Model. In summary: no idea shall be posited to the group without receiving mockery or a your-face joke. If you haven’t received mockery or a your-face joke, then you’ve been far too quiet today. And if you do something stupid, there will be no words of comfort, only giggling and/or: “Ah right. Do you know what I think you should do? Probably not that.” It’s a controversial technique, probably only effective in teams where everyone is actually related in some way, or at least like each other very, very much. A sub-section of the TM Mockery and Contempt Technique is the Wall of Dumb: Interestingly enough, since we compiled the first three entries, very few dumb mistakes seem to have happened… or at least, been confessed to. In all seriousness, though, the Wall of Dumb is actually making a point: everyone in the office is represented, and mockery is doled out on a fairly equal basis, although Richard as Chief Sarcastic Git might get off lightly sometimes… Cookies if you guess whose entry on the wall is whose!
So Total Monkery has been holed up in our little office for a little while now, tap-tapping furiously at our big procedural generation project, but the time has come to poke our heads out to tell you all that we have not forgotten our other games! In fact, we hope to see you at Develop in Brighton on July 11th, where – in between trying to fill our brains with knowledge and our pockets with freebies – we will be eagerly shoving our Iliara demo into the hands of whoever catches our eye. Anyone else planning to attend the Indie Dev day? And what are you most interested in?
Time is a very frightening thing. It’s nearly been 8 months since Team Monkery assembled. And a whole month since the last blog. So how goes it for us? Well, I’m pretty sure I have learned more in the past 8 months than my brain ought to be able to contain, and I’m sure Will feels the same. We are still working all-out on our funded project, which hopefully will have a super-shiny detailed press release and some web presence very soon. We’re also planning to put overtime in over the next few weeks to bring Mini MagNets forward. We’re hoping to have something for the indie showcase at Develop. And maybe Iliara will get some lovin’ too – but love don’t pay the bills, so we’ll see. It’s all been a bit slower than we’d like over the last week or so as the Richard Machine broke down and was ill in bed for what he says is probably the first time in a decade, and Will and I have been feeling the strain of the live together/work together dynamic just a bit. But all is well now, and very soon we will have ACTUAL THINGS to show! Concept […]
UK middleware tech developer Rymatek Limited has announced that they have entered into a development agreement with Mystery Enterprises Limited, an SEIS-compliant digital publishing start-up, focused on UK-based games software and intellectual property development. Total Monkery are proud to announce that they will be providing the technology for their first project – the Datafall engine. In addition, Total Monkery will be developing the first game to be made with the engine. More details to be announced soon. Or, in blogspeak – Richard’s fellow veteran, Matt (LinkedIn) has been discussing with Richard for quite some time the possibility of making a genuinely reliable, convincing and extensive (not to mention extensible) engine for creating procedural narrative. When Richard quit contracting to start up Total Monkery, it seemed like the time was upon them. They formed Rymatek, which is a very cool name if you ask me, to be the company that would hold the IP and eventually distribute the license for the engine they planned to create. They then created Mystery Enterprises, a company focused on publishing mystery games created with the license. Mystery Enterprises is SEIS-compliant, which is a government scheme to encourage British growth by rewarding investors with tax breaks; […]
So, we have now had the official Total Monkery Meeting O’ January Doom and Gloom. Conclusions? Starting a business is hard, yo. In summary: we’ve been working on Iliara with the intention to get to release as quickly as possible. But it has become obvious that ‘as quickly as possible’ is kind of going to be a long time if we’re going to get it to the standard our honour demands. And we would be crazy crazy bad businesspeople if we focused upon it as our only hope for success. Which, of course, we’re not. Quite apart from the Sekrit Project, which will be keeping us in coffee and noodles (and be a crazy awesome bit of tech…) we’ve had lots of other projects in development. Especially since we want to work with other indies and cool people that we know and love and help make Plymouth a hotbed of creative indie game development and all that. One such project is MagNets, which we had epic fun plans for if we won the Sony competition, and indeed still do if we get another funding opportunity. However, we didn’t – so it’s time to reshuffle schedules and see what we can […]
…And thank God the Christmas season is over, I don’t think my internal organs can take any more excess. Despite cheerfully departing work on the 21st with grand intentions, it may come as a surprise to no-one that very little work went on over the Christmas period. Not to mention, far too much eating and drinking. We start the working year today as bejumpered huddles, with bags under our eyes, various viruses in various stages of incubation, and withdrawal symptoms from all the things we have vowed to give up this year. That said, we have grand plans ahead! 2013 will be the year of Total Monkery World Domination. (Muahaha!) The current master plan, as given my our grand leader, is: “Work our tits off.” I may post the extended attack plan later in the week. But for now, I do hope that everyone’s Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations were joyful, and that those of you who are back to work today are in a better state than I! Anyone got any good New Year’s Resolutions?
Christmas is nearly upon us, and Richard’s easing up on the Mystery Project. This is happy news indeed for Iliara, as Richard is now a bit more free to fix bugs, make things shiny, help out with the port and even make levels. Muttering all the while about being a CEO and above this, of course. Anyway, this has resulted in progress of the kind that sometimes feels a bit like not-progress – some show-stoppers have been eliminated, but there are plenty of knock-on bugs to iron out. Our first exciting supermega (pre-alpha) DEMO is nearly done though! If it can ever escape from under the weight of the combined perfectionism in the TM office… I have trouble letting a blog post into the wild, let alone the game. Thankfully, we take turns reining each other in. And mocking. Ahh, teamwork! As for Christmas plans, The office will probably be quiet from the 21st to the 2nd. Richard never stops, though, so when I say quiet what I mean is blasting psychedelic trance at all hours. We also have an official TM Christmas Party/Family Outing (ahh, family businesses) on the 21st. And in the new year – demos, new projects, […]