Now that Monster Katz has launched, I thought it would be a good time to get some thoughts out there about Windows Phone and our experience with the platform. You can also check out this article where I talk to Steve Lesniewski about our experience.
What we thought…
As an initial mobile platform for us, Windows Phone was pretty much a no-brainer given that Monster Katz was targeted to XBLIG so a large part of the code base would work without any issue and the rest would be a matter of API tweaking. We did consider Android and iPhone but we wanted to get a couple of our other titles released this fall so the size of the effort was a major deciding factor.
Our experimentation with the platform will continue over the next few months as we continue to work to the release of the Survival and Arcade update (more on that in a future post).
What we found…
The input handling was very very easy with the almost macro level API for the gesture aspect. The rendering, tombstoning, and other aspects of the Windows Phone were so well documented (both by Microsoft and the XNA community) by the time we started it was a walk in the park to get the phone specific code written…I spent maybe half a weekend to get it all written including the storage specifics.
On the performance side of things we had no baseline and were a bit anxious before doing some fully loaded tests. Wow, what a wonderful surprise it was when the game literally out-paced the XBOX version with just a few hours of performance nudging. We had spent a decent amount of focus on general performance profiling and specific platform work ahead of time, but still…gotta give the API and platform teams at Microsoft props for a great job.
The graphic and audio content did require platform specific versions to make the grade, so that meant Anna and Cameron had a LOT of work to do compared to the code. In the end it helped us streamline our workflow a bit so extra benefit there and that is helping out as we work on the updates.
What we see…
With Windows Phone 8 on the horizon I must admit to some angst. We are not really stoked about the seeming chasm that Microsoft is digging between 7.8 and 8. The recent news of lagging (and potentially stalling) Lumina 900 sales is a data point that seems to put a lot of question marks on how successful the reboot of the Microsoft mobile market can be. I just don’t see Microsoft gaining a larger market share by pissing off the small group (we are included in that contingent) who they worked so hard to win over.
Clearance Bin Review gaming website took Monster Katz through its paces and reviewer Steve Lesniewski ranked the game a 9 out of 10.
The review called out the purposeful nuances of the Monster Katz game aesthetics and mechanics perfectly and was quite fair and discerning regarding the visual, audio and overall gameplay. Steve’s review demonstrates that an open-mind and a couple hours will be repaid in full by the Katz!
Don’t take our word for it – you can read Steve’s words yourself at Clearance Bin Review.
In a rare form of cooperation between Katz and Dogs, all of the sales of Monster Katz during June 2012 will be donated to Nowzad Dogs. Nowzad Dogs is a UK based charity that are in the process of securing a permanent shelter for animals in Afghanistan. If you are so inclined, you can donate directly on the Nowzad Dogs website.
XBOX Live Indie Games (XBLIG) that is!
Just a day after Monster Katz crawled onto the Windows Phone Marketplace, we are pleased to announce the arrival of the game for XBOX players as well.
If you have been playing XBOX for a while, you no doubt know that the indie (XBLIG) games are sequestered in the game marketplace…just go to the Indie games (XBLIG) section and Monster Katz will be there to download – currently most recently released so we are right there front and center
Let us know if you have trouble locating the game on either the phone or XBOX marketplaces.
Stay tuned for the launch of the Windows version of Monster Katz…we will be releasing a free version in the next day or so!
Monster Katz has just launched on Windows Phone Marketplace!!
After a fairly quick certification, our first title is available to all you Windows Phone gamers!
Monster Katz should be downloadable from the New and Action/Adventure lists but it is caught up with a handful of other games in some sort of limbo.
For now, please try this deep link in the Marketplace. We’ll post when the game is downloadable from the list.
A free version of the Monster Katz on Windows will be available before the end of this weekend so stay tuned for how to download. The free version will include the ENTIRE first to stages!
That’s OVER 25 LEVELS of challenging Katz-soaking action!
Currently the XBox Live Indie Games (XBLIG) version of the game is just this || close to being approved by the community!
We reached a milestone this past week when Monster Katz entered peer review for XBLIG.
The Window Phone version should be ready for certification in the next week and we will be announcing availability of the Windows version hopefully then as well.
So, stay tuned…and in the meantime, enjoy the trailer.