Ultimate Mario Maker Chicken Horse

Hello Ultimate Animals!

Want to know what we’ve been up to at Clever Endeavour Games in the past month? Well here it is!

Making the Marios

A few weeks ago, RDS Jeux Vidéo, the video games coverage team at a large media network for covering sports around here, reached out to us about a contest they were running. A handful of local indie devs would make a Super Mario Maker 2 level for their audience to play and then vote on their favorite, for a chance to win some prizes. We figured we had to take part in that!

While Ultimate Chicken Horse has been described more times than we can count as "4-person versus Mario Maker", none of us had ever actually played that game! When finally given the chance, Kyler wanted to try to recreate some of Ultimate Chicken Horse inside of Super Mario Maker 2 to understand how it is similar or different. The level he made (742-F3Y-RFF) is a simulation of playing many rounds on Rooftops, where after each round, new elements are added to the level that make it more and more difficult.

Check it out for yourself and let us know what you think! Did he nail it?

Indie Picnic

In late July, our besties at Kitfox Games invited us to an indie game dev picnic on a beautiful Friday afternoon. We were happy to join a lovely group of some of the best people in the industry to make the most out of Montréal's all-too-short Summer. Even Kyler joined in the midst of his paternity leave, and we all got to hang out with the very first ClevEndeav beb! Pizza was eaten, lemonade was drunk, group photos were taken, and dabs were... dabbed. 10/10 would picnic again.

(photos by Kitfox Games)

Work, Work, Work!

So then, what have we been up to at work?
You guessed it: more new game prototyping that we can't talk about yet. THAT'S IT BYE!!

...

Actually, we're happy to say that we have started working on some new things for Ultimate Chicken Horse, too! So, if you were ever thinking that we had abandoned the game: heck naw we haven't. We're not capable of doing that. We keep wanting to add stuff to it.

And to avoid having to repeat that we can't actually show you anything yet, we'll leave you on this little gem: What a typical prototype environment looks like in Ultimate Chicken Horse.

Ooh, baby.

Ooh, baby.

Yep. There it is.
Feel excited yet?

<3
The Clever Devs

Ultimate Chicken Horse Tournament, Disco:MTL, and Glasswork

Hello Ultimate Animals!

Here are some highlights from the last month at Clever Endeavour Games: a live tournament event for Ultimate Chicken Horse, a day-long indie summit on game discoverability, and some creative team-building fun. Let’s dive in!

 

Tournoi I-Sport 2019

On July 7th, Gen attended the first Tournoi I-Sport by La Zone de Jeux Indie Loto-Québec at the Montréal Casino. There, players took part in four tournaments of indie games made in the province of Québec: Ultimate Chicken Horse, King of the Hat by our office buddies at Business Corp. Incorporated, Save Your Nuts by Triple Scale Games, and Sacrifice your Friends by Astrolabe Interactive.

Photo by Matías Garabedian: twitter.com/matiasmontreal

Photo by Matías Garabedian: twitter.com/matiasmontreal

The energy at the event was super fun. Everyone involved in organizing and animating it did a great job, and the players for each of the games put on a fantastic show. You can see the Ultimate Chicken Horse match for the first place at this link (timestamp: 5h14m27s), but we also encourage you to peruse the recording to see the other games in action! Special thanks to Toornament for their help with tournament structure.

 

Disco:MTL 2019

A week after that, on July 13th, Gen went to Disco:MTL, The Game Discoverability Summit held by the GamePlay Space (where our office is). It’s always fantastic when industry events happen right where we are, and this one holds a special place in Gen’s heart because discoverability is a very high-priority topic in community development and marketing for indies.

Photo by GamePlay Space: twitter.com/GamePlaySpace

Photo by GamePlay Space: twitter.com/GamePlaySpace

The talks were about specific areas of interest – like visibility on Steam, influencer relations, Discord community-building, or game trailer campaign design – which made them extremely interesting… if you’re into that kind of stuff. Here we won’t bore you with diagrams of marketing funnels, but just know that they were there and they were good!

 

Team building: Glasswork!

Because we’re in a new phase at Clever Endeavour, where we’re experimenting with new ideas and just generally letting our creativity take the lead to discover what our next project will be, it’s especially important that we honor our tradition of doing team-building activities that take us all out of the ordinary day-to-day. That’s what we did last month when we went out to take part in a glasswork class!

Specifically, we learned the basics of flameworking, where the glass artist sits at a torch to melt sticks of glass onto a small metal rod, spinning it to form beads. As you can see, it looks equal parts badass and dorky.

It’s surprisingly easy to get started with this technique, so all of us were able to make our own unique beads that we took home after they spent a day in the kiln. Some of us also got creative with the format: Fabio made a couple of face-like sculptures, Rich made a snake, and Kyler made a jellyfish and… what we think might be attempts at Sheep? Gen bought a small sheep figurine from an artist of the glasswork atelier, and it makes for a pretty funny comparison.

2019-07-17 Glass Class Grid 3.png

That’s it for now!

Note that while we’re still busy with the Ultimate Chicken Horse community, professional development, and team-building (not to mention child-rearing in the case of Kyler), we’re also working every day on entirely new game projects. It’s just too early for us to make any of them public, so you’ll have to forgive us for being a little elusive!

 

<3

The Clever Devs

Ultimate Chicken Horse Patch, Cyber-Fabio, and CleverBaby

Today we launched a patch for Ultimate Chicken Horse, which included a bunch of bug fixes that we’ve been working on for a little while. This included some bugs that led to people getting 0:00 times in Challenge Mode, issues involving placement of items in Free Play mode, and solving the unlock problems that some people were seeing in Online play. It also included the audio bug where you could mute everything except the doomsday lava and meteors, because apparently even natural disasters should be able to be muted. You can see the full patch notes here.

This patch is out on all platforms, and it was actually out on XboxOne last week by accident. Oops! We needed to make sure to update all platforms at once to ensure that cross-play still worked between PC-Switch and PC-PS4, and since we don’t have cross-play for XboxOne it didn’t actually affect the players (except for getting you bug fixes early!).

We’ve also got a new AskClevEndeav video! Eve and Ben answer some of your most important questions:

Some new prototypes are in the works, and while we won’t give any information about what they are now, they’re going well and getting closer to playable prototypes that can be analyzed (internally, sorry) and brainstormed on. We’re working on four projects at once and we’re only 6 people working on them, so each of them is moving at a slow but steady pace. More updates soon!

At the same time as working on new stuff, we’ve been making sure to prioritize learning while we experiment. This includes Fabio working in VR using a 3D painting software called Quill, along with some other VR software. We call him Cyber-Fabio now. Below you can see the new Fabio and one of the animations he did with Quill.

2019-06-20 CyberFabio.jpg

And saving the best for last (no offense Cyber-Fabio)… The first CleverBaby has arrived! Huge congrats to Kyler and his wife Jackie on their first child, Theo! Here’s a picture of them being insanely cute together. And a picture of their Ultimate Chicken Horse counterparts; Kyler is the voice for the Chicken and Jackie was the Kickstarter backer who designed the punching plant in the game!

2019-06-19 Baby_Flower_Chicken.png
2019-06-19 KylerJackieTHeo.jpg

We're super happy for them and for this addition to their family! Apparently Theo already has some video game knowledge, napping on his father while he (Kyler, not Theo) plays Overwatch.

That’s all for this month, keep in touch and we’ll keep you informed!

<3
The CleverDevs + CleverBaby (or, if you prefer, Devs ’n’ Beb)