Comments: 173 • Responses: 24  • Date: 

brown-bean-water134 karma

  1. What sort of things (and what games) would cause frustration for your son?
  2. How easy is it to get started in Unity, assuming no development experience whatsoever?
  3. Do you currently develop games professionally, too?
  4. What's your take on the outrage about EA, as a game dev?

calamityjameson159 karma

  1. he's only 16 months old and usually we try to keep him away from tv, screens, and devices. He's an outdoor boy. :) but I've noticed that he LOVES the theme tune to mario kart when I boot up my snes and dances along when I play it for him. he gets agitated when he holds the controls because they stop moving, but gets equally upset if I try to take it back to help him. So this was the solution to that. :)

  2. I can't say for sure because I had 20+ years of experience when I first opened Unity. But their learning videos especially are the best I've ever seen. Take a look for yourself with a copy of unity and just have fun with it

  3. I currently work for a digital company which recently also branched into game dev. so yes. Their first game is due to launch on psvr before christmas. I can say more closer to the time if they let me :)

  4. as a game dev, it surprises me that gamers are so passionate. I'm also a gamer and my reaction to EA would probably be "I won't buy that then."

bismuth9218 karma

he gets agitated when he holds the controls because they stop moving, but gets equally upset if I try to take it back to help him

You know you can just hand him a controller that's not plugged in, right?

calamityjameson15 karma

well this would have saved me weeks of hard work ;)

Perfume_Girl1 karma

Thank goodness you encourage your child to be active and outdoorsy at a young age instead of cooping him indoors playing games all day. I will buy your game just for restoring my faith in humanity lol

calamityjameson3 karma

haha, thanks. he loves nothing more than being out in his waterproof trousers playing in a muddle. (mud puddle) :)

turnip_ron856 karma

Did your idea of the free copy to parents come before or after the EA controversy?

calamityjameson74 karma

way before. I didn't realise it but I started telling people about it on the same day that the EA thing had happened. I was wondering why everyone was talking to me about EA instead of Boinks and then I saw the craziness going on. I have been too busy dadding to know what goes on in the gaming world tbh!

wombraider533 karma

How did you first get started in game development?

calamityjameson107 karma

saw manic miner on an amstrad 6128 when I was less than ten years old. have been trying ever since to keep hold of that magical sense of wonder. studied maths and physics at school, computing science at university. then went directly to work making webites and flash applications.made a lot of flash online games. moved then to mobile development with the launch of the iphone. then migrated to unity a few years ago. :)

freakame2 karma

What flash games did you make or like playing? Newgrounds was huge for me as far as gaming and animation went... Great memories of the work there. Thanks for being a content creator :)

calamityjameson3 karma

I loved something called stick wars there years ago!

myth-ran-dire15 karma

Which stage in development took the most time? Did your son have any creative inputs for the game?

calamityjameson39 karma

juggling real life with game dev is the hardest. from the moment I get home after work until he goes to bed, I'm needed for his daily routine and general house keeping. after that, when I'm exhausted I have to be creative. not for anyone else, but for me. I can't sit and watch tv - it feels like wasting my free time :). he gets to playtest everything. if he laughs it works.

the_reckoner2714 karma

How did you decide the best way to make the game fun for you while also being easy enough for a small child to play?

calamityjameson24 karma

I knew it had to be a touch and release mechanism because that's all he can do. so then I was influenced by very early flash game mechanics that we all played (and some of us developed versions of) back in the day. It also had to have unexpectedly funny and cute character visuals and audio, as well as a tricky puzzle element. (for me!!)

Noizle14 karma

As a father who has played co op games with his 9 year old and who also gets frustrated easily. What sets this apart from games such as castle crashes or battle block? Will I want to strangle my child after playing a few rounds of this just like Cuphead?( yea I know it’s different)

calamityjameson17 karma

haha. the frustration wasn't mine. it was his. the only way to beat that is to not play it for you. but for him? this may get VERY frustrating for you if you get beaten by your nine year old ;)

mike_gag13 karma

Do you plan on continuing game developing?Do you like game developing in general?

calamityjameson35 karma


thisisnotdan8 karma

Any plans for a Switch/mobile version of this game? It looks like it would play well with a touch screen interface. I have two boys, 5 and 2 years old, and a daughter on the way, and I think they would love this game!

calamityjameson24 karma

I'm bringing it to Ipad and android tablet the day after steam :) just preparing all the store assets. unity lets me export across most platforms painlessly

ClassifiedRain5 karma

  1. How long did it take to create the game?

  2. What was your inspiration for the name "Boinks"? (It's so cute!)

  3. Can we see the baby?

calamityjameson16 karma

  1. a few months if you include the false starts and re-thinking. in man hours though if I started again it's relatively simple to code and even the characters and graphics could be done inside a week or so.
  2. boinks is what he says when something bumps into something else so that was his stamp on it.
  3. I am not a fan of releasing his image online in this mad bad world but I'll try and find a way without showing his face :)

calamityjameson4 karma

hmm. mods just removed my post. sorry everyone. seems it's too "casual" for iama :(

edit: currently providing more proof for mods :) fingers crossed

edit: STILL waiting for any kind of response from any of the mods. starting to feel like a conspiracy :(

jenkstom3 karma

Games for young kids on android are super frustrating. If a kid can't read, why are you asking them things in popups? I'll gladly pay a couple of bucks for ad free if my kids like the demo version. And in app purchasing is the most horrible idea ever invented.

I thought about doing something similar, but i have zero spare time secondary to triplets.

calamityjameson1 karma

triplets seems like the hardest job in the world - at three times the fun. congrats :) I agree. popups and ads are evil in kids games. no. no. no. to that :)

GodOfEnnui3 karma

I guess my question is why your post is "[removed]". Do you have any proof to back up your claims?

calamityjameson2 karma

mods say it's not suitable for iama and its casual iama :/

Rohit49plus23 karma

What's your favorite game to play?

calamityjameson8 karma

playstation 2's transformers by Atari. the sense of freedom when you find the wing add on and can fly from one place to another. unbeatable. also the classics. manic miner, defender. r type. I Can't choose!

faintpremonition2 karma

Father of 2 boys here (4 and 2). My kids love the idea of video games and we have regular game nights but they don't really play. The best games are games like Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime, where they can feel like they are participating, but it's okay that they aren't because my wife and I are handling it.

How does your game work for very young kids who don't really understand a controller?

calamityjameson1 karma

for the VERY young it's best to use a touchscreen. either on a capable computer or tablet version. also the game is designed to be fun to watch as well as play if they are too young even for tapping a screen

dopkick2 karma

Do you plan on trying to develop non-exploitative (i.e. not designed with DLC/microtransactions in mind), age-appropriate games for your son as he grows up and becomes more adept at interacting with things like an iPad?

calamityjameson6 karma

absolutely. not just for him. for everyone. fuck the pay per play model. it should be a one off price for a game that the gamer owns.

PissTacos2 karma

Why not do something more educational or developmentally encouraging with a 16 month old child?

calamityjameson1 karma

he gets all his developmental encoragement from his interactions with the real world. playing a game is a fun sidenote in is life. :) he likes horses, mud, and bright flowers that blow in the wind

PsychOXRat2 karma

What would your advice be for someone like me, a 16 year old that's been developing games with a friend for the past 3 years, on how best to get your game out there?

calamityjameson1 karma

get something quick and dirty out there rather than spend a long time making something perfect. then adapt and expand to bigger things. the sense of achievement and feedback will push you on quicker than worrying about how good it will be. also, unity.

Conspiracycat11 karma

Why did you start doing this? What inspired you?

calamityjameson1 karma

wanting to make something GOOD. I don't mean good as in awesome but good as in wholesome. the world is a scary place. sometimes I just want it to be innocent.

HellaBrainCells1 karma

Does it have a procedurally generated open universe?

calamityjameson1 karma

in a tiny sense yes. but it's no No Man's Sky!!

CapitalQ-3 karma


calamityjameson3 karma

It's all about the characters. look at what angry birds did to that castle slingshot game or what tiny wings did to the surfing game. I wanted a game mechanic that was fun but mostly I wanted characters that made me smile and made my boy laugh when he hears them. very much like aardman's brown and pink (or brown and green?) - an infectious laughter that makes the whole experience fun

JitGoinHam-43 karma

Why did you find it necessary to ride the coattails of the EA circlejerk instead of just presenting your work in a straightforward way or marketing yourself by buying an ad?

calamityjameson40 karma

I didn't. I tried to make a joke. But I'm a coder not a comedian, so that may not have gone as planned.