We’ve got another update to fill you in on what’s happening at Clever Endeavour and with Ultimate Chicken Horse. This fall is proving to be quite eventful, with our Switch launch late last month and a bunch of events.
Switch and the Elusive Switch Crash
The day before the game launched on Switch, we heard a report from a press person about the game crashing when playing in German. We looked into it and found that they were right… in some cases, and in some languages, the game would crash when returning to the Treehouse lobby. Though we had tested previously in lots of different languages, somehow we managed to miss this, and somehow Nintendo also managed to miss it when doing their certification testing. This is pretty surprising, seeing as they were extremely thorough and caught things that we never could have imagined testing for… that said, it slipped through the cracks.
We apologize to people who have been inconvenienced by this, and the thought process went sort of like this:
Certain languages are causing a crash! Maybe it’s the different characters in the text of different languages
More testing happened
More feedback from people saying they’re getting crashes in English as well
Confirmed that the text was causing the problem, but figured out that it wasn’t language-specific
Talked to developer friends who told us about a memory leak in the version of Unity (our game engine) that we used
Try to upgrade Unity to 2017 from 5.6
Broke a bunch of stuff, needed to fix it, but seemed like it helped with the crashes
New problem arose, where audio was choppy and not working well
Rebuild our audio engine for Nintendo Switch
Try to sync up our versions of Unity, the Nintendo development environment, and our audio engine
Test even more
Send update to Nintendo
That’s where we’re at now! The updated version is in certification and hopefully it will pass and come out soon, and all of our problems will be solved. Well, most of our problems, and hopefully the crashes, will be solved.
Fan Art Contest
Along with the Switch launch, we ran a fan art contest for Ultimate Chicken Horse! The winners were chosen at random from the group of people who made an effort to make something cool and UCH-inspired. We didn’t choose based on our favourite pieces, because that would be super biased and unfair to people who might be less well-trained artists. Here were our winners! And here are a couple of examples:
Last weekend, Rich and Kyler participated in an event here in Montreal called GameLoop. The event is based on the idea that sometimes the most important learning at conferences happens outside the conference halls, in more casual conversational format. GameLoop considers itself an “unconference”, with an emphasis on round-table discussions.
One of the coolest things about GameLoop is that the schedule is made on the spot, so you don’t know what you’re going to get when you show up. People pitch ideas for talks / discussions while the organizers write them down on giant post-its, and then everyone votes on the discussions by placing stickers on the post-its of the ones they’re most interested in. Once that’s done, everyone breaks up into the rooms they want to go to in order to attend discussions, and we chat.
I (Rich) always find it to be one of the best events of the year, if not the best, and I learn a ton. This year we sponsored the event and are super glad to be able to do so, and want to continue supporting it as much as we can.
MEGA & Montreal International Game Summit
Another interesting couple of events coming up are the MEGA (Montreal Expo Gaming Arcade) and MIGS (Montreal International Game Summit). The first is an expo where people showcase their games, and is only in its second year of existence. The first year was a huge success, and saw many more exhibitors and fans than expected… this year should be even bigger.
MIGS is more of a typical conference, like a mini-GDC that happens on the east coast. Unfortunately it’s held in November in Montreal which isn’t the warmest time, but people still come in from around the world to attend and speak. This year, Rich will be running a panel called HowStuffWorks: A Deeper Look Into Production Methods at 3 Indie Studios.
The event is usually pretty big, and last year the keynote was a fireside chat style talk given by the developers of the ridiculously popular (and ridiculously good) game Cuphead.
We’re working on it! We’ll tell you more soon. Cool things are coming. Follow our Twitter for updates!