New Beta

 I've uploaded a new beta version of UnSummoning: the Spectral Horde.  

This version includes an incomplete but playable story mode, which lets you fight enemies through 6 levels, including swamps, graveyard, badlands, and a temple complex. 

You can download the new beta here. 

Other improvements include redesigned textures, making the game easier to play for people with colorblindness, numerous bug fixes, and free beer for everyone!  (Actually, come to think of it, the free beer hasn't been implemented yet.  Maybe in the next beta.) 

As always, any and all feedback is welcome.  Enjoy. 

Old Animation Test, circa 2006

I recently came across this again, while organizing files on my computer.  This was the first Flash animation project I ever worked on, back in 2006.  

At the time, I had been interested in animation for a while, but knew almost nothing about it.  So, over Thanksgiving weekend '06, I downloaded the 30-day trial of Flash 8 and set to work teaching myself.  I knew that I would learn more if I had a specific goal to strive for (rather than just fiddling around with the program for a couple weeks), so I set out to make a trailer for a web series concept I had.  For the next three to four weeks, I spent every spare minute working on it.  I would often get home from work in the evening and work until 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning. 

The next spring, I started taking classes in Flash, then moved on to character animation classes, and eventually started working full time as an animator.  Along the way, the original series idea fell by the wayside.  

Looking back on it now, I'm still quite proud of it, despite the crudeness of the animation.  Perhaps some day I will return to this setting and flesh it out with a real story.  Or perhaps it will remain as an isolated slice of time: a snapshot of my brain at that time and in that place.

Final Spill.com Demo Reel

For nearly the last 5 years, my day job has been animating characters in Flash for the website spill.com (now spill.hollywood.com).  At the end of last month, however, I was laid off as part of a company-wide downsizing.  It was a good ride and I feel lucky to have  had the opportunity to have worked there as long as I did.  

So, now it's on to new and exciting things (which, hopefully, will not include living on the street and selling my organs for money).  I will be finishing my game, UnSummoning, soon, picking up freelance jobs, and generally seeing what new adventures life has in store for me.

I've put together a final demo reel of animations I made for Spill over the last few years.  It includes some new stuff, some old stuff, and...well...I guess new and old stuff pretty much covers it.  Take a look:

Update

New beta version!  New things: revised HUD, revised score system, arena previews, in game resolution controls, and a few other tweaks.  

Same download page!

New screenshots!

Beta Available Now!

Huzzah!  After working on this game for a few orders of magnitude longer than anticipated, the beta version of my game is finally available.  You can check out the game's webpage, or download it here.

The final release should be coming in the next few weeks (...or months...or years...my ability to estimate is poorly calibrated at best.).  Until then, try the beta and let me know what you think.  I appreciate any feedback, comments, or suggestions.  I'm still trying to figure out the minimum system requirements, so I would especially appreciate anyone who would tell me the system specs of the computer they ran it on and how well it worked.

Finally, here are some screenshots from the new beta version:

UnSummoning

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[Note from the future (4/6/14): Wow!  Boy was I wrong!  I just found this post when updating my blog, and was surprised to see how much I underestimated the state of the game at the time.  Never underestimate the time and cost of level design, boys and girls.  (Also the time and cost of crippling bouts of burn-out and self-doubt.)]

After months of work, my video game, "UnSummoning the Spectral Horde", is finally nearing completion.  In preparation for that happy event, I am going to try to start posting more regular updates, artwork, screenshots, and so forth.  

First off, what sort of game is it?  UnSummoning (as its friends call it) is an arena shooter with an action puzzle element.  You play the role of a nefarious necromancer who has unleashed the hordes of darkness upon the world so that they might wreak havok upon your enemies.  Unfortunately, the only thing they want to wreak havok upon is...you.  Now you must undo what you have done, banishing (or "unsummoning") the ghouls back to whence they came by gathering the power of magic sygils and blasting that power right back into their wicked, little, ghoul faces.

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Character Designs:

You may note from those screenshots that the character designs have changed drastically since my last update.  For those who are interested in the character design process, I will post another update soon where I will go into more detail about the evolution of the designs over the course of development, but for now, here are some close ups of the new models:

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