Over the last 23 years WayForward has developed more than 200 licensed titles, our most recent being Ducktales: Remastered. When circumstances permit, we also make weird and wonderful original games like Shantae and the Mighty Series. We'd love to talk to our fans about our experiences in the games industry, how we make our games, and our dream project Shantae: Half-Genie Hero currently on Kickstarter:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1236620800/shantae-half-genie-hero

Here's Proof: https://twitter.com/WayForward/status/381111179000549376

Feel free to "Like" us on Facebook or "Follow" us on Twitter:

https://www.facebook.com/WayForwardTech https://twitter.com/WayForward

Ask us anything! We've got a bunch of our Game Directors here to discuss everything and anything about games, game development, half-genies, ducks, aliens, sponges named Bob...whatever!

We've got:

  • Matt Bozon (MattBozonWF): Director of Shantae, Contra 4 and Mighty series

  • Adam Tierney (AdamTierneyWF): Director of Silent Hill BOM, Batman: Brave and the Bold, Aliens Infestation

  • Austin Ivansmith (austinivansmithWF): Director of Ducktales: Remastered, Mighty Switch Force! HD

  • James Montagna (JamesMontagnaWF): Director of Adventure Time: Hey Ice King

  • Tomm Hulett (tommhulettWF): Director of Adventure Time: Explore the Dungeon

  • Jeff Luke (jefflukeWF): Director of Regular Show: 8-bit land

UPDATE: 4:00 is upon us, so on behalf of WayForward I'd like to thank everyone here for your participation and support. This has been a blast! We'll continue answering your questions over the next 13 days over at the Kicktarter page (http://kck.st/1e7PwHu). Thanks again for supporting our games over the years, and please consider helping fund Shantae: Half-Genie Hero. We love what we do, and we love hearing from you! Thanks again, and back to work we go!

Comments: 803 • Responses: 134  • Date: 

IAmArique32 karma

While playing DuckTales Remastered (PC Version to be exact), I stumbled across this easter egg that is triggered by rapidly pressing the Spacebar after clearing any level. So... Like what the Easter Egg says, "What the hell is this?" Is there a story behind it?

Other than that, keep up the great work! Love DuckTales Remastered, and I'm excited as hell for Shantae Half-Genie Hero!

austinivansmithWF47 karma

Sorry but that was not an easter egg, it was a bug with placeholder text, and we fixed it right away. Story behind it? I'd rather give advice to budding developers: never do placeholders you wouldn't want to see in the final game, because if you forget to take them out horrible things will happen!

animeman5923 karma

Hello WayForward Team!

First, I would like to say that you guys are one of my favorite developers. I view WayForward as the western equivalent to Treasure, my other all-time favorite game maker. It's rare to see a company that focuses so much on classic 2D game design, and you guys are amazing animators. The breadth and quality of your titles are outstanding. Even when doing commericial tie-ins, you seem to exhibit a level of care and pride in every game you make. You don't have the cheap cash-in feel that other games have when related to another franchise. I really appreciate what you guys do. You're keeping the 2D dream alive.

Now onto my question. What is the dream game that you guys want to create either now, or in the future, but weren't able to before? Also, what's does the future look like for WayForward with the new console generation? Lastly, are you ever going to bring your games to the PC?

Thanks a bunch for this AMA. Keep up the great work!

AdamTierneyWF120 karma

Oh, and we're 100% not kidding, people - SO many people here at WayForward wanna make a My Little Pony: FiM game. Lauren Faust ROCKS. Make it happen, Bronies!

Tekaramity30 karma

I would yodel for joy. Get Hasbro on the phone. Please. I'm 100% serious. You guys would instantly become my favorite game developer, forever. And best friends. FiM deserves an excellent game, not something dispassionate or mediocre, and WayForward's absolutely one of the scant few companies that I trust would execute it grandly. Adam, I am asking you right now, get Hasbro on the phone. Or email, Twitter - whatever! We FiM fans would buy the heck out of a WF FiM game. Use your Business Connection-Fu to connect the necessary people and companies. And then? Make magic. All of the magic.

AdamTierneyWF36 karma

You guys should email Hasbro - tell them how much you'd like to see a WF-developed FiM game. :)

jefflukeWF11 karma

Oh man... For me it's Blaster Master. Either a remake or a new game, doesn't matter. That's my all time favorite game, so if I ever got a chance to do anything with that license, I'd die happy.

AdamTierneyWF5 karma

But NOT Blaster Master Boy (GB). We must be very clear on that. >:(

jefflukeWF3 karma

Blaster Master Boy is just Robowarrior. I'd remake Robowarrior! Why not?!

JamesMontagnaWF10 karma

My dream is to keep doing lots of cool original games! As far as existing properties... Adventures of Lolo.

AdamTierneyWF9 karma

I'd love to work on more horror games, music games, and shmups. As far as brands, dream ones for me personally would be Adventures of Lolo, Sunset Riders, and Dig Dug.

AxisOfAnarchy2 karma

DIG DUG!!!! I used to play that on my C64!!!

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

We have a Dig Dug arcade cabinet here at the WF offices. No joke.

austinivansmithWF8 karma

For me it was getting to make DuckTales Remastered.

We are totally going to start bringing stuff to PC, especially new stuff we bring to multiple platforms. As you can see HGH is slotted to be on PC once it is fully backed. Porting stuff can be a bit tricky, so we may just focus on the future instead of porting all past stuff, outside of Risky's Revenge of course.

tommhulettWF8 karma

I would love to work on Rocket Knight. ...again.

MattBozonWF12 karma

Mary Kate & Ashley in Action. It never happened and I was out to prove that we could take ANY license and make it a fan favorite. I don't.... I don't think they are ever going to call us back....

MattBozonWF12 karma

Ok, better answer... We'd love to make a Mega Man game. Or Metroid... several other classics come up often, like Karnov and Kid Dracula. We'd love to return to Contra and Aliens too.

AdamTierneyWF5 karma

KARNOV!!!! Yes, absolutely Karnov!

Videogames people, can WF pleeeeeeeeeeeeease make a new Karnov game? I've got a fever, and the only cure is more ladder-spawning.

MattBoySlim2 karma

As I've been playing through DuckTales (and the Mighty Switch Force games again), I keep thinking, "No one's making Metroid anymore. Y'know who would make a good Metroid game? WAYFORWARD WOULD MAKE THE BEST METROID!!!" Then I have to go cool off a little. Please pester Nintendo until they give you the go-ahead to make a new 2D Metroid. I feel like you guys would meticulously honor the source material while also bringing about something fresh and new.

tommhulettWF10 karma

I keep asking them about the baby.

rccrisp20 karma

Hey Wayforward, how come you're NEVER FAILING?

AdamTierneyWF24 karma

We sort of fail at failing. :/

MattBozonWF13 karma

Failing is not an ofshin.

jefflukeWF7 karma

speaking of shins... I bruised mine this morning.

AdamTierneyWF22 karma

Shin Megami Tensei?

marx_floe7 karma

Well, Smurfs 2 was kind of lame, honestly.

AdamTierneyWF19 karma

Keep in mind, our kids' games are made for kids. So for a product like Smurfs, we're very careful to create gameplay, visuals, and tone that appeal to the target audience, which doesn't always line up with the 20-something core audience WayForward has for our original games. With Smurfs 2, both WF and Ubisoft were super happy with how it came out, and we've gotten really positive feedback from kid playtesting as well.

Glampharos14 karma

What are the odds of a Mighty Switch Force 3?

MattBozonWF12 karma

I could see us doing it. There's no shortage of ideas or enthusiasm.

AdamTierneyWF8 karma

Career change?

austinivansmithWF7 karma

Mall Cop

gabrielh_the_g113 karma

Have you ever thought of working with the guys over at comcept, and possibly making a Shantae X Mighty No. 9 crossover?

MattBozonWF19 karma

Since all of this Kickstarter stuff happened we've started talking with them on a near-daily basis. We'll have to see how that relationship develops, but we see to have fans in common :)

Zerglinator10 karma

Do you do battle with the evil anticompany WayBackward?

jefflukeWF12 karma

It's like Good Burger vs Mondo Burger.

AdamTierneyWF7 karma

Wouldn't it be "SortaBackward?"

dctcool10 karma

Will Cat Girl Without Salad ever happen?

AdamTierneyWF17 karma

I don't understand. We announced the game a few months ago. Why wouldn't it be happening?

tommhulettWF13 karma

What's Cat Girl Without Salad?

austinivansmithWF10 karma

I expect more info on this in about 6-6.5 months.

marsgreekgod3 karma

Hate to ruin the joke, but wasn't it posted on April first?

AdamTierneyWF7 karma

Uh, no? It was posted on March 31st. Duh.

AdamTierneyWF5 karma

Blame the media. We sent it out on March 31st. shrug

yoshilite9 karma

Would I ever see you guys at /r/WayForward? We'd love to have you! I've set you all up with custom text flair, If any of ya pop in! :D

JamesMontagnaWF5 karma

Okay!

VictorHunter9 karma

Never EVER stop making games starring pretty ladies. Wayforward games are like the 50s pin-up calendars of the video game world. Masterfully crafted with a perfect marriage of technical skill and creativity, observing the medium through the lens of a true artist weaving reality with fantasy, objective with subjective. Also boobs.

Don't ever let anyone tell you there's no place for a bit of tasteful cheesecake.

keiyakins7 karma

The problem most people object to isn't cheesecake, it's that every woman is only cheesecake. Wayforward's girls tend to have a strong characterization beyond being attractive, which sets them apart in my mind.

(Well, there's also lack of beefcake, but that's another discussion :P)

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

You sayin' Bolo's not beefy?

Phiveball8 karma

I love Patricia Wagon and the Hooligan sisters. Any plans to develop them further through a story based game instead of speed-run puzzles?

MattBozonWF10 karma

Persoanally I'd love to. She was originally supposed to transform into vehicles. It would be pretty cool to bring back the ideas that were too grand for a puzzle game. Getting into the robot... stuff like that is just the tip of the robotic iceberg if it were a full fleged action game.

Holmfry6 karma

Any chance we'll see the multiplayer from screenshots of the GBA prototype for Shantae appear in a future Shantae title?

MattBozonWF7 karma

Never thought of that! Hmm.....

1338h4x6 karma

Why no Linux love for Shantae?

Also, how about a Sigma Star Saga sequel?

austinivansmithWF3 karma

Our engine doesn't support Linux or Mac. Maybe in the future though, we will see what Valve has to say next week!

Thomas_Malina6 karma

Hello, WayForward people. Excellent work on A Boy And His Blob - I recommend that to everyone I know who owns a Wii.

Question for Matt Bozon: with Shantae & the Pirate's Curse and Shantae: Half-Genie Hero coming relatively close together, is there a big impetus to try to differentiate them? If so, what are the main differences between the two titles?

MattBozonWF11 karma

The games will be roughly a year apart, since Pirate's Curse will be wrapping up before the year is up. The big difference is that HGH usese the traidional "dancing to transform" and Pirate's Curse is all about weapons and tools.

partytillidei5 karma

First of all, THANK YOU so much for Ducktales Remastered. Second, are there any easter eggs in the game that no one has discovered yet? Come clean with em guys :)

AdamTierneyWF6 karma

Austinnnnn....?

austinivansmithWF4 karma

I think the lock and see-saw in African Mines were fun fan-service ones, and "Dream and Friends" was the only real easter egg in there. Seems like everyone has found them, and it's awesome. :)

Foggen5 karma

Thanks for doing this!

  1. Are there any more Capcom revivals in the pipe? Strider is apparently taken, but I haven't heard about any Gargoyle's Quest action...

  2. I've noticed WayForward seems fairly committed to Sexy Female Character Design, what with the busty depictions of Shantae, Risky Boots, Bloodrayne, Linda, Marion, etc. Do you guys get a big portion of the "misogyny in games" blowback?

austinivansmithWF9 karma

To answer number 2, we haven't gotten much blowback, but I think that is in large part to our characters being interesting as characters and not strictly pin-ups in bikinis. You can make a character good looking without them being sexy, and you can make a character sexy without delving into the realm of misogyny, and we work hard to strike the balance of not alienating fans. Take Bloodrayne for example (where we did dress her in more clothes than normal), where Jim Sterling actually reviewed us harshly for NOT making her a sex-pot. I totally prefer a female character dressed more appropriately, because they can look interesting as a design, be visually appealing, without crossing the line of being overtly sexual.

egypturnash7 karma

So here's some thoughts on that from a lady who plays video games.

I did end up feeling like the main problem I have with Risky's Revenge is that all of the women have pretty much exactly the same "hot babe" body. I've got no problem having hot women in games (though I'd love to see some hot dudes too); I'd just like to see a diversity of hotness. Curvy ladies, flat-chested ladies, chubby ladies, they can all be hot in their own way. (Same with dudes: a big slab of beef can be hot, so can a sleek skinny guy!)

Basically I'd love to see female main characters in Shantae who I could tell apart naked, hairless, and uncolored. Right now I don't think I could.

(also maybe some noses on the dudes next time, that really weirded me out that the ladies in RR had noses and the dudes did not.)

(Already pledged, btw.)

austinivansmithWF3 karma

Thanks for the pledge! I actually agree with the point on the body type. It's something I'm looking forward to exploring when I get a chance to start an IP from the ground up myself. And as for the noses, that's a design of Matt's. I pointed it out last week and he said he does it on purpose for fun. It's neat seeing people notice. I think we need to see a tumblr where dudes have noses and ladies don't!

jefflukeWF5 karma

1.) I'd love to find out what happens after the ending of Demon's Crest. That's another dream project for me.

Master-Thief5 karma

You get to remake 1 classic NES game. (Assume that Licensing/IP stuff is no obstacle. And besides Ducktales... you knocked it out of the park with that one.)

Which one do you choose, and why?

EDIT: All good answers! (Personally, I'd put in for The Guardian Legend, but that's just me.)

tommhulettWF12 karma

Monster Party - because that game deserves it

JamesMontagnaWF10 karma

SORRY, I'M DEAD.

tommhulettWF4 karma

Oh no I meant Dyno Warz!!!

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

OMG, I wanna work on a Monster Party game with you! Can we tag-team it, Tomm? :D

tommhulettWF2 karma

As long as I get to be Bert.

austinivansmithWF10 karma

Battletoads. Seriously, Battletoads. BATTLETOADS!!!

jefflukeWF8 karma

Captain Comic. Because why not?

But seriously, Blaster Master. It needs to be shared with a newer generation. It was one of the most important games in my opinion.

AdamTierneyWF5 karma

UGH, just one? Okay, I'm gonna say "Vice Project: Doom." If we're talking pure remake, because that game was amazing.

JamesMontagnaWF4 karma

Just one?! ... Eggerland: Meikyū no Fukkatsu (okay that's a Famicom game)

MetalLink4 karma

Do any of you still play video games outside of work? I hear some people who get into the video game industry stop playing video games off work because their job is video games. If so, what ones are you playing currently? have been playing Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, its a really good MMO.

austinivansmithWF6 karma

I think that issue comes more with adulthood and responsibilities. When I find the time I love playing my Wii U, or more recently a bunch of games I got in the summer Steam Sale. Really want to play GTAV but have another baby coming soon. If you want to play games all the time, don't grow up and have kids!!! But kids are awesome too! (and I still play games from time to time)

AdamTierneyWF6 karma

I find since I started doing this for a living, I sample a lot more games, but finish fewer of them. It's a necessity for us to stay on top of what's being made out there, and what gamers expect and want.

tommhulettWF5 karma

I desperately try to keep up with all the latest games, despite hectic design schedules. Outside of indie games (which are great to play cause most of them are short!!) I've been playing Animal Crossing and Last of Us. Next up: Wind Waker HD!

jefflukeWF5 karma

I play a ton of games. I think it's incredibly important to keep up with the games coming out to know what people are loving at the time. I just finished The Last of Us and I cannot stop talking about it. I loved pretty much every single bit of that game.

So to answer your question, yes.

Phiveball4 karma

Do you think the timing of your Kickstarter campaign to coincide with the Mighty No. 9 campaign has hurt or helped you?

MattBozonWF11 karma

I'd guess there would be more attention on Shantae if the timing had been different. But on the other hand Mr. Inafune's team was awesome in cross-promoting. There doesn't seem to be a concrete answer, but the energy on Kickstarter is very high overall.

AdamTierneyWF8 karma

From what I've seen and read, I don't think there's that much cannibalization of funds between campaigns on Kickstarter. If you have a great game concept and pitch, people will back it, regardless of what else they just backed. The fact that Mighty No. 9 and Shantae: HGH are both doing so well is evidence of that. :)

PixelDetective4 karma

Excuse me Jeff Luke, I was wondering if for the Regular Show game you were planning on basing it more like a Sega Master System game since in the show that's their actual gaming console? That little touch of detail would be stellar. u

jefflukeWF7 karma

JG Quintel (the creator of the show) was very very excited when we were talking to him about Regular Show and he actually brought up the Sega Master System and how it was his jam back then. He specifically called out Psycho Fox as a game he would like to see some inspiration from. We definitely based the game more around a Sega Master System style game, but there's definitely some NES roots in there as well. There's so many classic callbacks in the game. I can't wait for people to see them all!

SonicWind1494 karma

Barely played any WayForward games, but I'm looking to change that.

Anyway, what would you guys say was your favorite game to work on?

austinivansmithWF10 karma

DuckTales was pretty amazing. Disney hired all the original voice actors from the show, and I got to meet all of them, along with all the new voice talent. I got to meet Mike Peraza, art director on Little Mermaid, and his wife Patty, who were both Disney artists in the 70s and 80s. I got to go to the "vault" and thumb through tons of old animation cels. And I got to remake a childhood favorite game with an incredibly talented team. This is something I will never forget.

But Might Switch Force was a ton of fun too! The levels are so much fun to design I did all the Hyper stages for the HD version. It just so much fun making those levels and trying out new puzzle mechanics.

tommhulettWF6 karma

Contra 4 and AT:EtDBIDK were some of my favorite games to work on.

jefflukeWF3 karma

I'm relatively new to WayForward, but already, one of my favorite games to work on was Regular Show: Mordecai & Rigby in 8-Bit Land. Previously, Scribblenauts was really fun to work on :)

LadyAvianna4 karma

Can I cosplay all your things?

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

Yes, and ONLY you, Emily. You are the Cosplay Queen and the WayForward Princess.

LadyAvianna3 karma

Can your artists make a collage of all the Wayforward princesses together like the Disney Princesses?

JamesMontagnaWF3 karma

YES! and you mean all at the same time, right?

tommhulettWF2 karma

Please do!

MattBozonWF2 karma

Yes! We'd be honored.

LordCeno3 karma

So, is the Double Dragon Neon online bro-op patch dead at this point?

MattBozonWF5 karma

Not necessarily. Our contract with Majesco Entertainment has run it's course, so we're just waiting to see if we're going to be hired on to do it. They have asked us to route any requests to their support line. I believe the support email is on majescoentertainment.com

Foggen2 karma

If you talk to them, tell them I want you to make Super Dodge Ball.

AdamTierneyWF7 karma

Dude...can you imagine a WayForward-developed Kunio-Kun game? :O

DrossSA3 karma

Any chance of another WayForward Contra game? What other 8-16 bit throwbacks would you guys love to revisit?

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

We'd love to. It's up to Konami, though.

sailorspork3 karma

I have to say, your animations and details for Shantae's DS game were AWESOME. Do you guys also just sit and watch Shantae stand there and bounce around? Or is that just me? @[email protected]

AdamTierneyWF14 karma

Nothing is more critical animation-wise than the idle, jump, and run. These are the three animations that most gamers will see for 90% of the time they play any platformer, so we always pay super close attention to getting those just right.

HA263 karma

Thank you for your answers! My team and I are currently making an ambitious game (we're 3 people). Hopefully we'll show it off in the next GDC. Your games have always been an inspiration.

JamesMontagnaWF5 karma

Hey, I'm always around GDC. Hit me up, I'd love to see what you're working on!

fireice992 karma

Is it true Jake Jr. and Flame Princess are playable in Explore the Dungeon?

tommhulettWF3 karma

We can't say too much about the various characters featured in Adventure Time: EtDBIDK (D3 and CN made us promise real hard!) but there are a lot of them! There are a lot of fan favorites! However there are also a lot of rumors going around about characters that aren't in the game... so, just look forward to future announcements!

crystalshards2 karma

First, I'd like to say thanks for the Shantae series. I'm happily backing Half-Genie Hero and looking forward to seeing what you do with it.

I was wondering if you could talk more about you teaming up with Inti Creates that you guys mentioned a few updates ago. How do you see the collaboration developing and what do you think it'll add to HGH?

MattBozonWF5 karma

When Risky's Revenge came out, people liked it and it got great reviews, but one comment that stuck with me was when the game went international. There were comments from players in other countries saying that the drawing style was not "true anime". So I started looking into some accomplished dev studios. I think we can get Inti Creates to adapt a more animation-centric design style while they help us to be more authentic. Each time KOU does a drawing, I go over it, show him how to "Disney it up" and then he works on it some more. We go back and forth like this until we hit something both of us like. The Rottytops "GLEEFUL" image is a great example of this. So, they're going to bring a great visual style to the brand I think.

sprech412 karma

Will the new Adventure Time game be available on Steam? Also, will it have online multiplayer?

tommhulettWF4 karma

Adventure Time: EtDBIDK is definitely coming to Steam!

CanadianFuzzy2 karma

Why is Mighty Switch Force 2 $7 in Canada when it's $5.99 in the US? Do you not have control over the price here? Almost all other games are priced the same in the two countries.

MattBozonWF3 karma

We just set the US price, and do a straight conversion based on the conversion rate at that time.

sirtaptap2 karma

Do you guys prefer 2D games over 3D to design and why?

AdamTierneyWF5 karma

I prefer 2D. Working in 2 dimensions instead of 3 (and typically thus limiting how your character can move, and where they can go) usually results in tighter gameplay.

Tekaramity2 karma

Insightful perspective, here. It's a bit mystifying, though, that so many 3D games operate along two planes: the x-axis and the z-axis. In that sense, they're actually similar to 2D games, whose playfield comprises the x-axis and y-axis planes. One standout among your games (and the other greatest 2D games) is the prominent inclusion of gameplay that takes full advantage of both planes of movement.

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

Good point. Well take our game LIT for example. It's a fully 3D game. But, like you said, there are only two axes (since you can't jump or climb). The game is basically a really, really, really creepy Adventures of Lolo. And I'd almost consider that 2D-ish (at least for gameplay). Where I think things get less tight is free movement between all three axes. And it CAN be done wonderfully, but it's much more likely to go wrong imo.

JamesMontagnaWF4 karma

Both are awesome! But I like to design 2 dimensional games because many 3D games give me terrible motion sickness. Therefore, I'm especially pleased we make a lot of 2D games at WayForward!

jefflukeWF4 karma

I think I prefer 2D overall, but 3D allows for some amazing opportunities. I'm a giant fan of the Ratchet and Clank series and I really think that series only works in 3D.

tommhulettWF3 karma

I like them both equally. But having done a ton of 3D games in the past, it's nice to finally get to focus on 2D for a bit. But on the other hand I've been playing Last of Us and oohhhhh man.

Goodbye180002 karma

Are we ever going to get a Wayforward Super Crossover game? Like a kart racer, a brawler, a SRPG with third person shooter elements?

AdamTierneyWF7 karma

We love blending genres, so anything's possible. And we actually have dabbled in some of these genres. Our Looney Tunes and SpongeBob GBA games had kart-racing in them. And both Sigma Star Saga and Silent Hill were both total RPGs (even our first Adventure Time game, to a degree).

rutterkin2 karma

What's your favourite Ducktales level?

MattBozonWF13 karma

I like Castle Transylvania. I call it Castle-vania.

tommhulettWF4 karma

replaying it for Remastered, I really enjoyed Himalayas and African Mines more than I remembered on NES.

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

Probably the Moon stage. It's one of the shorter ones, but I love the one-off gameplay, themes, and music in there.

JamesMontagnaWF3 karma

I like the Money Bin!

MetalMario642 karma

If not all the stretch goals are met for Half-Genie Hero, is there a chance for DLC?

Thanks for the AMA. Love DuckTales, Shantae, and Mighty Switch Force.

MattBozonWF4 karma

There could be, but we'd be self-funding so the process could be pretty slow. MUCH better if we can line that up as part of production.

Level99Games2 karma

I run a game design studio doing small-budget iOS games and board/card games (we're called Level 99 Games).

I was wondering if you had any tips on how a studio goes from Indie-level production to Triple-A in the video game market. I feel like even if we had a massive budget, I wouldn't know where to start to polish a project the way it's needed to succeed in that arena. Any tips for how to climb the ladder?

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

The advice I'd personally contribute is find amazing talent. Look on sites like Deviantart and Pixelation or Pixeljoint, and team up with people that are passionate, creative, and incredible. That's really all WF is - pure, constant passion from every discipline. Even though our studio is usually around 100 people, we have the mindset of a much smaller studio.

Phiveball2 karma

Now that you have decided to port your WF engine to the Vita, any chance we might see Blood Rayne or DuckTales make it to the system?

MattBozonWF3 karma

Typically once the tech is up we'll let our clients know... then its up to them. It would be great to have those games on Vita!

Phiveball2 karma

Do you have other in house ideas, besides Shantae, that you have not had a chance to develop, but you may now in the era of Kickstarter?

MattBozonWF4 karma

Yes, we have a backlog of original games dating back to 1992 that were never able to be made. Not all are still relevant (some are), and we're creating new concepts constantly.... Kickstarter could help us make more of them happen. We've only averaged 1 per year recently.

aett2 karma

Hi everyone, I'm really looking forward to Pirate's Curse and Half-Genie Hero!

Will HGH feature the Metroidvania style of backtracking once you've found new abilities or items since the game will be in chapter format?

How great would it be for Shantae to appear in a Smash Bros game?

Thanks!

tommhulettWF6 karma

I'd love to see Shantae in Smash Bros!! I'd add her as one of my mains for sure (let's hope she'd get along with Ness, Lucas, Toon Link, Mario, Luigi, and Pit...and I guess Megaman and AC Villager)

StevenEpps2 karma

Hey WayForward! Been fans of yours for years, absolutely love your work.

Darkwing Duck or Chip 'n Dale next? Darkwing Duck would be a perfect opportunity for you guys to make a Megaman game in everything but name!

MattBozonWF4 karma

We'd love to. Hit up Capcom and yell at them! We do, but it means more when it comes from fans. We noticed that Darkwing Duck just went to DVD, so someone over at Disney has eyes on the brand.

XScarredHeart2 karma

I just wanna know...what will happen to the potential stretch goals if they aren't reached in the Shantae Kickstarter? I'd still like to see them in the game when it comes out...

MattBozonWF6 karma

Unfortunately we won't be able to include them. There may be a feature here and there we could attempt to roll out as DLC, but that would be slow. Whatever funding we get will be used to make the best game possible at launch. We can do a lot with a little, but even more with a lot ;)

skyewelse2 karma

Hello everyone!

My first question is for Mr.Tierney. Was the Aliens theme song at the end conceived for the game? I love it. Aliens is my favorite American film of all time and you guys really "Secure'd that S***..." with Infestation that is to say, the true essence of "Space Marines". : )

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

THANKS! I loved working on that game SOOOO much. One of my favorite WF experiences for sure.

The song already existed as the version you can find on YouTube (which also talks about Predator). Our producer Jeff Pomegranate loved it and reached out to the band, and we hired them to write an Aliens-only version of the song for our game (adding a few verses). So it's semi-new, semi-old. But 100% awesome!

te-na-cious2 karma

what are your favorite indie games from fellow devs?

austinivansmithWF6 karma

I LOVE Dukope's "Papers Please". I think everyone should check it out.

Also Im getting into "Gunpoint" right now.

"Spin the Bottle" for the Wii U is an amazing party game.

And I'm super excited for "Scram Kitty and His Buddy on Rails"

tommhulettWF6 karma

I'm a huuuuge fan on Braid, VVVVVV, Cave Story, and Super Hexagon!

tommhulettWF4 karma

Oh duh, I was obsessed with Papers,Please for a few weekends!

jefflukeWF4 karma

I fell in love with Bastion. That game is so so good.

JamesMontagnaWF4 karma

For me, Johann Sebastian Joust re-defined the meaning of what a video game could be. When a game becomes about connecting with other people and sharing an experience together, I think that's where video games can have the greatest impact.

AdamRBi2 karma

Hi guys; I'm a huge fan of Wayforward and your games more for it's visual style and 2D animation then it's tight gameplay. I know some of you are yourself animators, a few even went to CalArts.

So when you're developing the art for a game, wether you're hands on or just approving, in what ways does it differ from the production of a feature animation in your own opinion? What do you look for in a game's animation or design that's different? (Say, for example, minimal anticipation or design to be seen from a distance.)

And, if any of you can speak for the technical side of things, what sort of methods does Wayforward use to import their HD sprites into the game's engine? As someone getting into game animation myself, sprite sheets can end up pretty sizable after a while.

austinivansmithWF3 karma

Speaking on my experience with DuckTales, one of the biggest challenges is having a character be the exact same size for every single one of his animations. That scale needs to be hit over and over again, whereas with feature you are jumping all over the place depending on shot distance and angle.

For a lot of player actions there is never anticipation, but you can have plenty of follow through to fill out the "feel" of the animation. But for enemies, and especially bosses, you want that anticipation so you can read the incoming attack, which we call "antics" here at WF.

It's also really important that your character read at resolution. For all our characters in DuckTales it was important to establish the size of the character on screen early on, and draw him at the same relative size for all the animations. This can be a really easy to overlook.

As for the sprites, we have an amazingly talented engine team with our own proprietary art pipeline, and our lead engine programmer even created a new texture format to give us the best looking images at the smallest compression possible. http://files.wayforward.com/shane/rgbv/

Samladdy2 karma

What is the main goal of making Shantae HGH, is it for the fans, recognition, money, wanting to be the best? Please be honest and detailed (if you can).

MattBozonWF6 karma

This game is born from a deep desire to advance our art form. And its for the fans who've come to expect great things from us. There are probably easier ways to make money, but Voldi has created a company based around people chasing their passion. That's why I love it here, and also the reason for the project :)

gilster2622 karma

Hello there, WayForward!=) I just wanna say that REALLY enjoyed your games "Shantae: Risky's Revenge", "Ducktales: Remastered", and "Mighty Switch Force"(1 and 2)! And although i may not have enough money to donate your next game "Shantae: Half-Genie Hero" I just wanna let you guys kknow that you have my FULL support~!_^

And to prove it, here's a little gift to you; http://gilster262.deviantart.com/art/Shantae-Half-Genie-Hero-401526966

Good luck to you guys, and keep being awesome~!;) Looking forward to playing you future games!=D

AdamTierneyWF2 karma

Thanks for the kind words and the pic!

Dodecahedrus2 karma

If you are a studio with so many years of operation and so many games published already, wouldn't you say that using Kickstarter to start an 'Indie' game is misleading because you are clearly part of the establishment?

AdamTierneyWF2 karma

I'm not sure how we're 'misleading' anyone. Firstly, the term "indie" doesn't appear anywhere in the campaign. What it does say is:

"Over the last 23 years WayForward has developed more than 200 licensed titles, our most recent being Ducktales: Remastered. When circumstances permit, we also make weird and wonderful original games like Shantae and the Mighty Series."

That's a very clear and accurate description of the company, right at the start of the campaign. Having said that, WayForward does happen to be a 100% independent studio. We may be a larger-than-usual independent studio, but we're self-owned, we're not second-party to anyplace like Nintendo, Sony, or Microsoft, and we stay afloat by seeking out contracts and creating our own games. I don't see how any of that makes us part of the gaming 'establishment' or non-indie.

If you're commenting from the perspective that only very small indie games and studios should be allowed on Kickstarter, I'd recommend checking out this post from Kickstarter themselves:

http://www.kickstarter.com/blog/blockbuster-effects/

The data shows that more established creators and companies don't pull funds away from the smaller campaigns. Instead, they bring scores of new backers to the site, who then go on to back future projects.

FlameEliwood2 karma

What was your favorite original game series to have worked on?

jefflukeWF5 karma

Original game series... Shantae for me. As a fan of Shantae and WayForward even before working here, to get the opportunity to work on a series I've absolutely loved is so incredible.

MattBozonWF4 karma

If I had to choose outside of Shantae, I'd pick Contra 4. My favorite straight up kids license was Wendy the Witch. It was made by Jimmy Huey, me, my wife and brother along with a few others. So a big family project :)

AdamTierneyWF2 karma

My favorite licensed series is Silent Hill, but my favorite actual licensed experience was probably Aliens DS. As for original stuff, it's, um...an upcoming one. :x

mirby2 karma

Probably a simple question, but what are all of y'all's favorite gaming memories?

tommhulettWF10 karma

Megaman 2 was the first time I realized that there were actual people making these games... and that maybe one day I could be one of them! That's a big one. Also, nearly missing High School orientation because I was fighting Queen Zeal in Chrono Trigger after a 3 day non-stop binge.

tommhulettWF7 karma

I also remember renting games like Shadowgate and Lolo and trying to get through them with my best friend, even though they didn't come with manuals.

jefflukeWF3 karma

There's so many! How do I choose! I have some really fond memories of going to our local video store on friday nights and getting to rent a new game. It came in one of those trapper keeper plastic case things for holding your pens. It had the original manual in it which somehow managed to stay in prestine condition every single time. My brother and I rented Rygar on NES and marathoned it that weekend. So good.

MikeHarvey0422 karma

Hey WayForward! Now that we're a little over half way through the KickStarter, tell us how this experience has affected you thus far. Are you surprised by the overwhelming reaction and support from us fans?

MattBozonWF4 karma

Hey Mike! Just when it felt like we'd sink in the mire of 24 hour responsibilities, the fan support kicked in... fans are making this happen. At first I thought "how can we make this be about the fans", but it wasn't even necessary. Fans simply took over. It's great!

MattBozonWF3 karma

(side note to everyone else, Mike made flyers that are now stamped all over Game Stops)

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

Holy cow, you guys really love us! :O It's been amazing, exciting, thrilling, and terrifying. The only negative is most of us still have games to be making right now, when all we want to do it reach out to the community and promote the game, haha. :)

TheBobHatter1 karma

How much bigger would the budget have to been to have lips move with the dialogue?

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

We actually considered this at one point in our Batman game on Wii, which has had our largest amount of VO to date in a project. It depends on how you do it. If you're just talking about a single-overlay to create an 'open' mouth, then it's not necessarily a massive undertaking. Or if you limit exactly which animations can be used to 'speak.' But if you're thinking of lip animation during all animations, or a full range of mouth shapes for all the phonemes, it'll add up quick.

Short answer - it is something we've thought about before on projects, but haven't taken a stab at yet.

yoshilite1 karma

Just how long is the proof of concept demo from the HGH Kickstarter trailer?

MattBozonWF5 karma

Let's see... it takes about 3 minutes to run through? It's a proof-of-concept... not a demo in the sense of a Xbox demo (like, the ideas come accross but its not using final art, no music or sfx.

marx_floe1 karma

Guys, why almost all your games are so short? Adventure Time, Mighty series, Duck Tales, Shantae - I love them, but they can be beaten in one or two sessions. That's not fair.

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

Games should be as long as they need to be. I love that I can beat Portal in 2 hours, ICO in 4, and I've dumped 50+ into MGS: Peacewalker and still haven't seen everything it has to offer. The worse thing a game can do (imo) is overstay its welcome.

As to why some of our games tend to be short, my own opinion would be that so much of what we practice at WF is rooted in the NES era. And games of that generation were often not 16-hour experiences. They were 1 or 2 hour experiences, that you would play and master over the course of hundreds of hours! So there's probably some of that mindset. And we also love the speedrun aspect (especially in our puzzley games).

But ultimately, we always make a game what we consider the appropriate length for the type of game and the content within. If you look at our Silent Hill game, you would honestly need to play it for 100+ hours before you've seen everything (and even then, it doesn't end). So it's all about the individual project.

tommhulettWF3 karma

As far as Adventure Time: HIKWYSOG - CN, D3, and WF all heard your laments about game length! AT:EtDBIDK will be meaty and wonderful! Expect to pour at least 15 hours into the quest, if not more!

tommhulettWF4 karma

(probably more)

te-na-cious1 karma

Firstly, love your work on both Double Dragon Neon and Ducktales Remastered, they are two of the finest retro remakes ive ever played, taking the feel of original while also coating it in love for the source material and then still making something that feels modern and updated ... Fantastic work.

1.) has there ever been a wayforward project that just went tits up, either got cancelled or just was hard work upto completion?

2.) has there ever been a licensed game you guys wanted to make but the license holder declined for whatever reason?

edit: grammar edit 2: also accidentally deleted a question about DDN steam port possibility and info on internships, luckily austin read the question before i deleted that chunk, many thanks :D

AdamTierneyWF4 karma

One thing that people might find interesting is that in this industry, when working with publishers and licensed properties, you pitch many more games than you actually sign. And for each pitch, we basically have to create that game in our minds (and on paper), complete with character designs, illustrations, gameplay examples, etc. It's super fascinating and always a ton of fun to do, since it's almost like a 1-week mini-project.

So people are excited that we've made Double Dragon, Contra, A Boy and his Blob, etc. But there are secret docs here with SO many classic game brands that we're given the hypothetical WF treatment, that will sadly never see the light of day.

austinivansmithWF4 karma

Thanks! 1 & 2) this isn't the kind of stuff we can go into details about, but yes, and it can be heartbreaking. I keep saying 30 years from now there will be lots of "tell all" books when people don't care about needing to find more work or getting sued! 3) You would have to ask majesco about that one. They have contact info at majescoentertainment.com (i think)

We do have a jobs page, drop us a line and we will see if we're a good fit. http://www.wayforward.com/jobs/

ExchangedFates1 karma

How do some of you at WF feel about fan games that are based on some of your characters - like Shantae or Pat Wagon, to name a few.

AdamTierneyWF3 karma

We love all forms of fan appreciation! Obviously these are character owned by WF the company, so if any fan projects attempt to make a profit featuring our characters, that becomes a sticky situation. But outside of that, it's always nice to see people loving the characters we love to create.

Nillansan1 karma

Hi WayForward!

Any chance of seeing Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse on Steam once you have released Shantae: Risky’s Revenge and Shantae: Half-Genie Hero on the platform or is exclusive to the eShop?

Keep up the good work!

MattBozonWF3 karma

Our president (he goes by Tyranical Overlord) wants these games on EVERY PLATFORM. He's so mean. It's eShop exclusive by design, but after the games release there are often conversations about what's next. I would not want to promise this game anywhere but 3DS since it's desinged for that platform. And yet I feel that conversation is perhaps a year away. Of course, we only make the move if the game was sucessful in the first place, so it needs to sell copies on 3DS.

MetalLink1 karma

So about the Steam version of Half-Genie Hero, do you have to go through greenlight or will it directly go through Steam? I ask this mostly because Steam was one of the platforms listed and I plan on choosing that.

MattBozonWF3 karma

We spoke with the folks at Steam prior to KS launch, and they gave us an instant pass. They were pretty awesome.

pikkon381 karma

Jeff Luke, I love and you miss you. That is all.

jefflukeWF3 karma

you love and I miss me? How peculiar! Stay golden, donnieboy.

Gyossaits1 karma

Random question: do you guys and gals like The Binding of Isaac?

jefflukeWF3 karma

I do! It can be tough as nails sometimes but the amount of crazy stuff that can happen in that game keeps me coming back.

tommhulettWF3 karma

I love the feeling of "hey what's this strange new thing do?" the game provides every time you play. It was an inspiration as we came up with the wacky sub-weapons in Adventure Time.

GeminiSaint1 karma

Any chance for Wendy: Every Witch Way to make it to the 3DS eshop some day? What about Sabrina?

MattBozonWF2 karma

Hmm. Wendy was with TDK interactive. And we made Sabrina for Simon & Shuster. I'm not sure if those companies are around or if their assets are still owned by anyone.

MattBozonWF2 karma

Yeah, this would take some SLEUTHING!

madhair601 karma

Thanks for doing this.

Will the new Adventure Time feature randomly-generated dungeon floors for maximum replay value? If not, will there be plenty of post-game reasons to replay?

tommhulettWF3 karma

I'm glad you asked! AT:EtDBIDK does feature randomly generated floors, however we didn't want the game to feel un-intentioned, like random games sometimes can. For this purpose each floor is made up of several designed "chunks" with elements that can be turned on or off. What this boils down to is that you have constantly shifting "designed" chunks, so the game feels cohesive and interesting even though it's randomly generated.

And there will certainly be post-game content! I can't talk about it now, but you're sure to find the BEST LOOT after the credits have rolled.

tay120n641 karma

So nearly everything you've done I've loved, and I particularly wanted to thank you for your direction on last year's Adventure Time game. I always particularly loved the style of Zelda II, and I've been pining for a game of that style, but with more polished combat, to come out for years. The end result might not have been as robust as it could have been, but I loved every minute of it, so thanks!

(Also, I just played GBC Shantae for the first time and it blew my mind. '___' )

So my question, since you guys do a lot of licensed games is: What non-gaming IP would you most like to make a game based on?

JamesMontagnaWF4 karma

Re: Adventure Time ... Thanks so much for enjoying the game! I recall that Pendleton Ward (creator of Adventure Time) was a fan of that Zelda II style, and it's something we wanted to explore as well. I wasn't sure how it would resonate, but I'm pleased to know it paid off.

As for a non-gaming IP that it would be cool to make a game about... I bet we'd make a pretty spiffy Lupin the Third video game. (Oh, oh, or Sailor Moon!)

tommhulettWF4 karma

(stay tuned)

jefflukeWF3 karma

For me, I've thought long and hard about a design for a RED game. It would play like Contra Force.

FlameEliwood0 karma

If the stretch goals for Shantae 1/2 genie do not get met, do you plan to release them later as DLC for the game?

MattBozonWF3 karma

I think there's a thread talking about this currently... let's see...