Hey Reddit! We a supergroup of four indie game developers who got together to make a compilation of four (or more?) local multiplayer games, called Sportsfriends. A year and a half ago, we got Kickstarted with Reddit's help, and now we've finished the game. You can read more about it in this great Polygon Review or this equally great IGN Review.

We're here to ask your questions about that, or anything else, and we're even prepared to make tired jokes about Rampart. We're even prepared to answer that one about the ducks.

You can buy Sportsfriends now on PS3 and PS4! Links: PS3 USA, PS4 USA, PS3 UK, PS4 UK with Steam versions coming soon.

Answering questions will be

  • Bennett Foddy, designer of Super Pole Riders, QWOP, GIRP (/u/foddydotnet)
  • Douglas Wilson, designer of J.S. Joust, B.U.T.T.O.N., Dark Room Sex Game (/u/doougles)
  • Noah Sasso, designer of BaraBariBall (/u/nnooaahh)

Proof: Here's our proof!

/edit - going to post a few PS4 codes for the game (American store) in the comments, happy hunting!

/edit2 - like, for example here is one. But you'll have to guess TWO alphanumeric values bwahaha 9N?R-Q5N6-6N?P

/edit3 - there are 4 codes floating around this thread now. Have they been claimed?

/edit4 - speed challenge! Can you beat the robot code harvesters that plague the internet? LQHP-KGNB-FT9Q

/edit5 - did you know you can play Hokra 1v1 if you use the split controller feature and control one player with each thumb? We call this 'true hokra' because everyone on the team except Ramiro (who designed it) likes it better than 2v2 Hokra. Don't tell Ramiro I told you about it!

/edit6 - well, it's been 5 hours, and we're going to have to call it here. Thanks for reading, everyone! I hope you check out our game on PSN!!

Comments: 617 • Responses: 54  • Date: 

maxwell600809 karma

Just want to say fuck you for the endless amount of frustration that was caused by QWOP. But you're cool people so, hugs.

foddydotnet672 karma

ah, the good ol' 1-2 fuck-you-hugs combo. A classic

jamessmarion293 karma

hey, bennett, it's james. what did i get in prototype studio? grades aren't up yet.

foddydotnet377 karma

hey, all of reddit: what grade should I give James for this class?

espuurr143 karma

Well, since he had to ask... F

foddydotnet143 karma

that's how it works, right??

RuttedStar104 karma

What are some other local multiplayer games we should be keeping an eye on?

Already had a bunch of friends over to play Sportsfriends. Can't express how much fun all the games are. Great job!

foddydotnet80 karma

Loving the look of Kyoto Wild, by the Hyper Light Drifter guy. So nice. And I highly recommend the currently-in-progress Push Me Pull You which is like Human-Centipede-The-Game.

Nazi_Funded_Gogurt53 karma

Mount Your Friends is fun.

foddydotnet81 karma

there's a secret QWOP character in Mount Your Friends!

oneslypig18 karma

TowerFall is real great as well for local multiplayer. Available on PS4 and PC right now IIRC.

UPDATE: Accidentally a word

Freezenification22 karma

PS4 and PC right now IIRC

don't forget the ouya

foddydotnet15 karma

we would like to do a microconsole release if possible! We need to make enough money to pay a programmer first, though

djb8551150 karma

Truthfully are any of your good at QWOP, how far can you go?

foddydotnet138 karma

True story: I recorded the successful running footage of QWOP they used in The Office

TH3_GR3G17 karma

Is there a YouTube video somewhere where I can watch this? I don't watch the Office and I find it unbelievable that anyone could actually run in QWOP.

foddydotnet9 karma

there's over 13000 videos on youtube of people playing QWOP. Some of them are super skilled! Look at the speedruns

foddydotnet48 karma

[BOAT RACE] Doug, Noah and I are doing a boat race. Whoever's post gets closest to #5 sorted by 'hot', but without going over, is the winner. Help me out with some upboats (but not too many)

EDIT: I WIN! But don't push me over!!

EDIT2: OH NO, I went to #4. It's all over :(

simongoldberg43 karma

What have you got planned? Fuck man QWOP was some real shit, pole riders was hilarious :D

foddydotnet48 karma

Home computer release of Sportsfriends, then making a ton of new stuff over the summer. Working on a steam version of QWOP and a bunch of free games, that's the plan.

Ax_Me_Anything37 karma

Ah fuck qwop

doougles37 karma

i know right

foddydotnet43 karma

here's a Sportsfriends code for use on the PS4! Find the missing letter


eliotl31 karma

Hey, I'm a Kickstarter backer. No questions from me at the moment. I just wanted to say thanks for making these awesome games finally available to the public. You guys have been busting your asses to polish these games to a perfect finish and it really shows! I love all the little touches like the gorgeous animations in the menu and how the music smoothly switches between different variations without dropping a beat.

Also for making the PS3 version have alternate controller schemes like shared controllers and Sixaxis 3 for JS Joust. Sony controllers are really expensive so this is much appreciated!

Lastly, thanks for doing proper attribution of the sounds you used from Freesound.org! This matters a lot to our community and sets a good example for people on how to honor Creative Commons licenses. I posted about this on the forums and the community was appreciative, including the founder Bram, whose sound was used in Super Pole Riders. :) http://www.freesound.org/forum/your-work-made-with-freesounds/35056/

foddydotnet13 karma

nice, thanks for letting us know about that! Freesound is super-important.

Cactusman00827 karma

What are some of your favorite house rules for J.S. Joust?

foddydotnet31 karma

yeah, chair joust. Vine here

mfdrums19 karma

I work with evolutionary algorithms here in UCD Ireland and a few of us in the office REALLY want to create an evolutionary player/solver for QWOP. We need access to the source code to get it working properly, is there any chance that you'd be willing/able to provide it? There'd be a nice journal article in it!

foddydotnet29 karma

Sorry, but you got beaten to the punch by a student team in Wisconsin. I think they're presenting it at a conference soon!

zindlerb19 karma

Life Tips. Go!

foddydotnet58 karma

  • use two pans if you're cooking corn tortillas. Seal one side in a nonstick pan on low, then flip into a hot cast-iron thing and they'll puff up.
  • take the internet super-seriously. It's the future.
  • Naruto is the best TV show

doougles26 karma

Ugh, now you got Bennett started on Naruto again

KirbyKid11 karma

I didn't know Bennett even knew what a Naruto was? Why haven't we had this very serious conversation before Bennett?

foddydotnet14 karma

so good, right Richard?

TH3_GR3G3 karma

Shameless /r/Naruto plug. We'd love to have you!

foddydotnet4 karma

I'm kind of afraid of spoilers. I haven't read the manga

doougles13 karma

Never play co-op Spelunky with Bennett Foddy

TheCrimeMinister13 karma

Where is Ramiro? Have you killed him?

foddydotnet15 karma

He's somewhere on a boat in southeast Asia. He's the one Sportsfriend who actually remembers to take holidays!

greenghoulie13 karma

Love Sportsfriends - the two players on one controller feature is really innovative and clever. Thanks so much.

Can you talk about the 4 player barrier of local multiplayer?

I know, I know. No one has 6 friends (except Doug). It seems to me the magic happens when there are more players in the room, even when they're not playing. Games like Killer Queen Arcade are so fun because the number of local players - is this the future or just a gimmick?

foddydotnet11 karma

Sad to say, but PS4, Xbone and the popular Windows XInput drivers all only support 4 controllers at once. I made a chess game for 16 players at once but it required a special DLL and isn't super-compatible. I'm really excited about making games for huge numbers of players, though.

doougles9 karma

I don't think we need to only think about the living room. It's fun to play games at parties, conventions (think PAX, MAGFest, etc), family reunions, in the park, whatever.

In that sense, I still believe it's worth paying for great games even if you can only play them at "events" and parties. I guess that's what were hoping to show with Sportsfriends.

doougles3 karma

(That said, there's a reason there's some more couch-friendly games in Sportsfriends, split controller mode, etc. We're hoping to satisfy both the living room and bigger events).

greenghoulie4 karma

Right - so why no 8 player Hokra? 4 controllers shared? Or 8 player split screen Pole Riders?

foddydotnet3 karma

Ramiro showed an 8-player Hokra at Indiecade in 2012... I think he decided in the end it was too chaotic to be fun. For most games, you need to design them with a certain number of players in mind.

For Pole Riders, I think it would be very hard to read if there were 8 players?

p-wing12 karma

I don't have a question.

Little Master Cricket was the first iOS game I bought (after playing the flash version to death), and probably the purchase I've gotten the greatest return on. I'm not any good at the damn thing, I just love it.

Thank you, Foddy :)

foddydotnet11 karma

thanks so much! It was the first iOS game I wrote, and also the first ever thing I wrote in any type of C. There are so few good cricket games though, I had to try my hand.

btw: I've never told anyone this before, but in Little Master Cricket canon the bowler is always Shane Warne.

p-wing3 karma


There are so many sports games that try too hard to get the "sim" part and just end up being a bad (or bloated) game. Frankly, if I want to play a sports game, I'm usually going to play something that is at least 20 years old. I think that's why SportsFriends looks so good - the games are simple & hard, but they're GAMES, not sims.

...and then there are sports that just aren't popular here in the U.S. that barely get a game at all. I'm still holding my breath for a decent Aussie Rules game.

Or sumo.


foddydotnet4 karma

Tim Rogers says Sumo is the best sport in the world, and I'm inclined to agree. There are some vaguely sumo-themed games out there, from Projectyle to Push-Me-Pull-You and Sumotori Dreams.

p-wing3 karma

It's a sport for my body type! Get On Top is certainly a great take on...

...did you just send me a link to a quarter-century old game that features a sport with three teams on the field at once?


foddydotnet5 karma

if knowing about Amiga games can qualify me as a wizard, then let me get my robe and wand!

foddydotnet9 karma

Here's a free PS4 code for use on the USA store: 4LPA-TPNQ-8AN?

(guess the last letter)

biar_rose6 karma

How on earth do you get to the secret sky level on Pole Riders? We've tried everything.

foddydotnet13 karma

obviously you haven't tried everything. Come on, biar_rose, don't make up lies.

Johnny_Lawless_Esq6 karma

I have to ask the needful:

What are your personal bests for Q.W.O.P.?

foddydotnet20 karma

50m. I don't shimmy though, shimmying is for the weak.

seanmg13 karma

One feature in the original QWOP I wish was included is a timer. Anyone can beat qwop, but not everyone can beat it in 1m30s. I want to show my dominance that way.

foddydotnet8 karma

that's a pretty amazing score

oneslypig4 karma

The big question is when will see the PC release? I've been playing the Super Pole Riders beta, but got spoiled on all those other levels and PAX Prime/XOXO.

foddydotnet5 karma

A PC beta is going to backers ASAP, just trying to eliminate some thorny bugs. Then once that's been through the wringer, we'll do a full PC release on Steam, (Mac Windows and Linux)

jepster_dk4 karma

If you had to describe the experience of being on Kickstarter, with all that entails, in 3 words, what would they be?

foddydotnet4 karma

'A Rollercoaster Ride'. Truthfully, it's really heartening to get funded on Kickstarter and we were enormously grateful to our fans and supporters, but it's also a LOT of work, and it's not free money in any sense.

2headed_boi4 karma

Not really about Sportsfriends, but what are some good books on game design? I've been trying to find something along the lines of the Will Eisner / Scott McCloud books on comics that explain HOW games do what they do, not just technical manuals or textbooks. The best I've been able to find is "Rules of Play" by Salen and Zimmerman, but it's still a little technical for me.

doougles4 karma

Tracy Fullerton's textbook Game Design Workshop is a pretty good intro level textbook.

There's a bunch of far more "academic" books on games I really like, but they're less explicitly about design.

Some of my favorite writing along the lines you're looking for exists in blog posts around the Internet. For example, I really like David Sirlin's articles about the games he makes. (For example, his series on balancing multiplayer games: http://www.sirlin.net/articles/balancing-multiplayer-games-part-1-definitions.html)

foddydotnet5 karma

+1 on David Sirlin's articles. Michael Brough also writes some crucial stuff on his blog.

ltsimmens3 karma


do you plan to offer some commandline tools for the pc/mac/linux versions, to start directly into a game?

My usecase would be running js joust on a headless machine.

foddydotnet3 karma

This is in the plans for the public PC release, yes. We've heard from a few people with similar wishes.

boqeh3 karma

I keep hearing that cross-buy works from PS3 to PS4, but not the other way around.

Just curious, is that a Sony issue?

foddydotnet5 karma

It's a super complicated issue that has to do with how our contracts were drawn up (before the PS4 was announced). Unfortunately we can't really go into more detail than that, for legal reasons.

fufusus3 karma

Have you ever seen the video made by penguinz0 of him playing QWOP?

foddydotnet3 karma

no, link?

fufusus3 karma

foddydotnet4 karma

Oh wait, Cr1tikal is now called Penguinz0? Yeah I did see that - in fact that was the video that got picked up by RWJ and which catapulted QWOP to internet fame.

zindlerb3 karma

You seem to have built up/ been part of an awesome indie game community. Any tips on creating a thriving community?

foddydotnet4 karma

I don't think we can take credit for building it up, that should go to people like Derek Yu and Stephen Lavelle and Terry Cavanagh and Babycastles. But we have been lucky to be part of several awesome communities, both the local 'new arcade' scene in NYC and the global scene of indie developers that coalesced around TigSource in the mid-aughts.

There's only one tip I can give, which is to show your work early and often.

foddydotnet3 karma

What? here's another PS4 code for the game!! Only I've randomized the order of the three 4-character segments


Poobslag3 karma

What do you think about slower-paced couch-competitive games revolving around strategy or deception? Games like Hidden In Plain Sight, M.U.L.E, or Poocuzzi? Have you thought about designing games like this, do they interest you at all?

I love everything you guys do!! Thanks so much for SportsFriends!

foddydotnet3 karma

I loved playing Hidden in Plain Sight at indiecade, although I don't own an Xbox to play it on. M.U.L.E. is one of the all-time multiplayer classics, and in fact Sportsfriends opens with a quote from MULE developer Dani Bunten Berry.

zindlerb3 karma

How do you all pay the bills? Is it entirely through game dev?

foddydotnet5 karma

Noah, Ramiro and I all teach game design at local colleges - I teach at NYU Game Center. Also, QWOP qwop.

zerosyphon2 karma

Love ya'lls work. So 3 questions if thats alright. 1. Not now of course the game just came out (and congrats again on it releasing). But will there ever be a permanent toggle to get FLOP and Get On Top added to the menu? 2. If/whenever Sony adds custom music/mp3 support to the ps4 will you all consider adding in the custom music feature for Joust? 3. And figured I would ask... any Hints for the secrets in Hokra and Barabariball?

foddydotnet2 karma

  1. I really didn't think that the secret games would get discovered so fast! If I had known, I might have put a toggle and added them to the menu... but at least they're pretty quick to boot up. Adding them to the menu might make sense in a patch.

  2. Yes, we would really like to, if it's possible.

barkup2 karma

Sportsfriends, eh? How much do you guys bench?

foddydotnet2 karma

I can bench about 5. Not sure about the other guys, but I will say that our arms are all equivalently spindly.

Freezenification1 karma

I'm really excited to play Sportsfriends but sadly I have no PS3/PS4 so I'm waiting for the PC version which I have a few questions about:

  1. Will the PC version have any differences compared to the PS versions?

  2. Is there any chance of non-backers being able to get access to the beta early via something like Steam early access?

Whatever the answers are to these I'm really looking forward to the playing the game, thank you for making such fun things to play!

foddydotnet3 karma

  1. They'll be very similar, but the PC versions will have some advantages and some drawbacks compared to the PS versions. You should be able to share your Hokra levels with other people, and use a variety of controller types, and there will hopefully be some options for running Joust with no screen. You won't have to content with people calling up the system menu when they accidentally hit the PS or Xbox home buttons out of excitement. On the downside you probably won't be able to use Dualshock controllers in Joust, since their accelerometers aren't exposed in the PC drivers.

  2. No current plans. Our first responsibility is to the backers, in the short term.

Aumnie1 karma

I've started playing more local multiplayer games recently (ex: TowerFall, Starwahl, etc. - I can't wait for SportsFriends to come out on Steam) and I find them so much more fun than online multiplayer due to that old console games-like feeling. What do you think is the future for this genre of video game in the future? Will more game devs work on these types of games in your opinion?

foddydotnet2 karma

The way we think about it is that we're trying to buck the trend, which has been away from local multiplayer and toward single-player or networked-multi only. If we succeed, there will be more local multiplayer games in the future, and we'll be pretty happy about that. But we have to create the kind of super-rewarding experiences that we had with local multiplayer games as kids.

ltsimmens1 karma

as you are in development for linux/mac/pc what kind of controller have you tested so far - especially for js joust

and do you know what is the maximum amount of player you can connect to linux/max? as you stated already for windows it looks like 4

foddydotnet1 karma

Yup, 4 is basically the limit for windows because the underlying subsystems use XInput rather than DirectX. On the Mac you can have up to 7 players in Joust, not sure about Linux.

AdoDaYugo1 karma

How much more time does it take to port the same game to PS3 vs PS4?

foddydotnet3 karma

we're using Gaijin Games' cross-platform framework that they used for Bit Trip Runner, which cut down the time significantly, but it's still a lot of work. It took me and one of our programmers about a month to get it running and then another 3 or 4 to iron out all the kinks. The PS4 tools and devkit are pretty great, but generally speaking, new platforms are weird and full of bugs.

zindlerb1 karma

What games would the greatest local multiplayer tournament include?

foddydotnet1 karma

Seconding doug on the classics but I would pick different ones.

  • Track 'n field
  • Warrior (1979)
  • Off The Wall (Sente)
  • Warlords
  • Biplane Duel

thecescshow1 karma

Did you get any death threats for games like QWOP?

foddydotnet1 karma

no, but I did get some great hatemail. A badge of honor amongst us evil-aligned game designers

Tu13es1 karma

I picked up Sportsfriends last week and am having a blast with it. Can we expect any content updates or have you folks moved onto bigger and better things?

foddydotnet2 karma

We're still hoping to do a PSN patch but it's not decided as of yet. I know Doug was keen to get custom music into the PS4 version, for example, but it's not supported in the PS4 system software yet. We want to fix a few lingering bugs and if I can find a way to nerf Noah when he's playing me in BaraBariBall, that would be great too.

We probably don't have the resources to do a whole lot of extra levels or characters, though.