Pop Pop Pop!
Strange Flavour’s classic Mac hit AirBurst is finally on iOS and it’s coming to your real world in AR!
App Store Link
AirBurst is one of the the first Strange Flavour games (as well as one of the first OSX games) and Airburst Extreme was one of the first games we launched Strange Flavour Ltd with in 2004. Both gained cult status amongst Mac gamers and even spawned an animated short “AirBurst: The Soda of Doom”, shown at Comicon 🙂
AiRburst is a brand new version of our classic game for iOS 12 and lets you play 1-4 players over WiFi in AR!
We’re starting with the primary 4 player characters, BCM, Flux, Maya and Moon and the normal Arcade game mode (with the Extreme powers from Airburst Extreme). Future updates, depending on sales, will add in the extra characters from AirBurst Extreme as well as the ones from the un-released XBox 360 version along with more game modes.
We’re borrowing a trick from RocketCat Games and releasing AirBurst at $0.99 and then increasing the price by $1 each major update. We’re also continuing with our policy of not messing about and doing sales on our titles, so the earlier you buy AirBurst, the cheaper it’ll be!
(and yes, there’s going to be a Mac and Apple TV version too!)
AiRburst is out now for iOS 12 (AR capable device required) for $0.99/99p/€0.99
Flick Fishing Redux
Time to stop messing around 🙂
When we wrote the original Flick Fishing for the iPhone back in 2008, we never realised just how influential or long lasting a game it would be.
Due to change of ownership and management of our publishing partners we gradually lost the ability to update the original version and decided to focus on different games for a while. However the fans wanted Flick Fishing and we rebooted and relaunched the game as Fast Fishing and then Fish!, deciding that launching with the same name but as a different product might be confusing (the original app SKU not being under our controlFlick ).
What we’ve realised since then is most of the players buying Fish! have been searching for Flick Fishing and are more confused by the name change and lack of Flick Fishing on the App Store than it being a new product. It also doesn’t help that Fish! is a terrible search term. So, let’s de-confuse it a bit…
From the 1.4 Update on 19th July, Fish! will now be Flick Fishing (or Flick Fishing Redux as its full name 😉 ). It’s still, as always, the Flick Fishing you’ve grown to love, but we’ve stopped messing around calling it a different name.
The 1.4 update will be simultaneous on iOS, macOS and tvOS and features more fish, a new fishing spot and a new system that lets you collect powerups to build your own custom fishing rod!
Fish! (soon to be Flick Fishing) App Store Link
and on the Mac App Store..
Keep your eyes peeled for a subtle but important change of something on our site this month 😉
We’ve finally got the first part of the big Fish! 1.3 update out and the biggest part is that we’ve brought back FishNet!
The idea of FishNet is that you can play against your friends no matter where they are. Whatever fish you catch when a FishNet game is active are recorded and at the end of the game time, the winners of Best Fish and Best Catch get medals.
FishNet games are a bit more flexible than network or pass and play games as you don’t need to be on the same network or in the same room. You can start a FishNet game, get some friends to join and just fish whenever you’ve got some play time, the FishNet keeps tabs of the scores and notifies you all when someone catches the best fish so far.
Currently, FishNet games can be from 1 day to 14 days long, but in the next update we’re going to add some quicker ones so you can resolve any bragging rights issues quickly 😉
Another new feature for this version of FishNet is FishNet Teams.
By creating a team, you (and anyone who joins your team) can pit yourself against all the other Fish! Teams in the world. Once in a team, all fish you catch count towards that team’s scores and at the end of each week and each month we award the top 3 teams medals!
Medals btw. are like bonus gizmos that boost your fishing skills automatically. They only last as long as the game you were playing (so a medal won for a 1 day game will last 24 hours and one for the monthly competition will last 30 days). So for bigger fish, play FishNet and win medals!
On the teams front. We’re going to organise some specific inter-team tournaments soon. So get your FishNet team together now!
Fish! on the App Store
A new game!
So, the last month or so has been somewhat chaotic. We’ve still been working on the big Fish! update while we can, but needed a small project that we could work on in spare moments. Plus we’ve been itching to do some AR work with ARKit and wARships was our obvious project 🙂
wARships is a Pass and Play AR version of the classic pen and paper game that you can play with a friend over your coffee table (or vs an AI in single player). It actually detects you passing the device to one another to change turns!
As it’s a pretty simple (but fun!) game, we’ve decided to make it the first of our 99c/99p range. If you’ve got an ARKit compatible iOS device (iPhone SE and up or newer iPad), grab it from here!
wARships on the App Store
As I mentioned in the latest Mobile Mavens article on PocketGamer.biz one of the risks of being a small indie dev is that a random family crisis or localised disaster can blow your project deadlines and business plans out of the water.
I added this to my piece as it was going to press because at the same time I was packing an emergency go bag to head out to Tunisia in North Africa to attempt to rescue my father who’d fallen ill while on holiday out there (with no travel insurance, as it’s kind of a no-go area at the moment) and bring him back to the UK for treatment.
It took a week to get him back, 2 days in Tunisia trying to get him as well as possible while trying to find return flights and 5 days in France (earliest flight back was via Paris but he collapsed on the plane). Eventually I was able to take him back to the UK on the Eurostar and he’s currently comfortable in a UK hospital.
Major thanks to the British Foreign Office and consulates, Nouvelair’s excellent flight crew and the Doctors and Nurses in France and the UK as well as Dad’s friends Hamza and Yvonne who helped him out and contacted us to let us know he was ill. Having my partner Lynne back in the UK able to look up and co-ordinate things was critical to getting out again and my old MacBook Air and iPhone 6 Plus with a local data sim were priceless in terms of keeping that link and booking things, mapping etc. On the 2 hour crazy taxi drive back to the airport, the local driver got lost when his Android phone lost signal and maps, so my iPhone (which still had signal and retains the map even when offline) was able to direct him to the airport.
Of course, this has had a big impact on the update to Fish! we’ve been working on as well as burning a huge hole in our savings that we’ve been running the company on. Rather than push the release date of the update back, we’re going to split the update into two and release it in stages.
I’ve already got some major fixes and changes in place. Mostly from going through the player reviews and emails we’ve had for requests (exit goes back to the map, yay!) so the first update will have those along with some other bits at the start of March. Then the 2nd update a little later should have some of the bigger components once they’re tested, including the full new reboot of the FishNet game mode we had in Flick Fishing that gave you the ability to play multiplayer games with your friends around the world!
So, apologies for this extra delay and if you haven’t bought any of our games yet, now is the time to pick one up as we really need the sales at the moment.
Fish! on iOS/tvOS/watchOS (Universal Purchase)
Fish! on macOS
Planes Trains and Automobiles (and Fish!) iOS/tvOS (Universal Purchase, bundle of our games!)
Fish! for macOS
The macOS version of Fish! is now up on the Mac App Store. That means Fish! is now on every single Apple platform, macOS, iOS, tvOS and watchOS!
Here’s the Mac App Store link Fish! For macOS https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/fish/id1313955304?mt=12
and here’s the iOS version link (which also counts as the watchOS and tvOS version) Fish! For iOS/AppleTV https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/fish/id966194870?ls=1&mt=8
The App Stores are pretty broken for smaller devs like ourselves at the moment. Not only does the search ignore a new app until it gets a few zillion downloads, it also doesn’t show an app even if you type its name in exactly (on the Mac App Store for instance, it’s impossible to find Fish! or Strange Flavour by search). So we’re reliant on the direct web links.
Unfortunately that’s now broken since iOS 11 as the new desktop version of iTunes removed the iOS App Store it means you can only use an iOS App Store link on an iOS device. (Likewise you can’t buy an AppleTV or MacOS app unless you’re using the device specific App Stores).
What we’d love to see is a cross platform web based App Store that lets you buy apps for all your Apple devices in once place (or at least from any device). Your account already knows what devices you have anyway, so the store should be able to warn you against buying them for the wrong device and it would make the App Store a lot more accessible to everyone (not to mention letting it tempt people away from other platforms 😉 ).
Now the wait is over, the Fish! 1.2.2 update is out and the AppleTV version is waiting for approval I can keep everyone up to date on what else we’re doing 🙂
Firstly, time to reiterate our policy on pricing and sales. Having realised that paid apps are probably our only chance of actually paying the bills, we decided some time ago that we’d focus on them and stick with a “No sales” policy.
The philosophy behind this policy is that we don’t want to mess our players around with variable prices for games and set a reasonable price for them.
So there’s no point waiting until one of our games goes on sale. If you want to play it, buy it now. It won’t get any cheaper and if they’re not selling early on, we can’t afford to update them and may even have to drop them entirely.
What’s next for Fish! ?
The next big update will be in the new year. We’re going to be adding quite a bit more cool stuff in this update. Now I’ve got the UI rewrite out of the way, we can focus more on content. There’s going to be more classic Flick Fishing features returning too!
Also, I’m dabbling with the Mac version of Fish! If you’ve got the macOS version of Fast Fishing from the Mac App Store, drop us a line as we’d love to set you up with a free copy once it’s up and running as a thank you for your support.
Download Fish! Now from the App Store! (Fish! is Universal Purchase, so buying the iOS version also gets you the Apple TV version)
If you do want to try a fun little free game of ours by the way, we do have SpinnYwings on the App Store for you to play. Give it a go!
SpinnYwingS on the App Store
Fish! 1.2 Update (it’s Flick Fishing really ;) )
I got the approval message from the App Store yesterday for our huge Fish! update, so it’s set to go live this week (to be precise, 00:00 28/9/17 Australian time). Flick Fishing is back baby!
This update is kind of a big deal for Adam and myself as it’s the first time in a while where we’ve been able to set a decent block of time aside from doing contract work etc. that pays the bills to focussing on one of our longest running games and do a solid update for it. It helped that we’ve had a ton of great feedback from players who’ve been playing since Flick Fishing days and a huge part of this version is getting more of my game design features from Flick Fishing into Fish! The biggest of those familiar new elements is the collection of ‘junk’ items from treasure chests, which are now the method for unlocking gizmos, reels and rods, but also unlock a brand new, just like it never went away, Xtreme mode 🙂 (for those not brought up on Flick Fishing, Xtreme mode unlocks all the same fishing spots, but with bigger and tougher fish, so it’s a gameplay mode for the more experienced players, but with bigger fish as a reward).
We’re seriously hoping that Fish! can get more of our old Flick Fishing fanbase back with us. We weren’t able to continue updating Flick Fishing for various reasons after our publishing partners Freeverse were bought and their App Store account was eventually closed. Because the original game was on their account, it meant we couldn’t update it and so we ended up with Fish! as a new SKU (which means there’s no way to let original Flick Fishing players know about it directly). So it’s annoying but did give us the opportunity to do a fresh start on the project (even if I did re-use the actual fishing mechanic code 😉 ) which makes it a lot easier to keep updated in future.
If you’re a Flick Fishing fan, now’s the ideal time to get back into the game and pick up Fish! from the App Store. Don’t wait for it to go on sale as we’ve got a standing policy of “No Sales” (they don’t work any more for smaller devs like ourselves) so the price isn’t going to get any lower 🙂