Three years ago, while Goldfire Studios was working on Casino RPG, they found the web audio options available to them at the time to be sorely lacking. What did they do? They took the initiative and created an audio API that allowed them to easily support audio on multiple web browsers. Howler.js was born.
Goldfire Studios continues to do its best to make sure that everyone has an opportunity to find and play its hit game Casino RPG. To that end, Goldfire has launched Casino RPG on Desura. This allows anyone who uses the Desura client to launch the game directly from their computer rather than having to launch the game through their browser.
I gave the game and Desura client a quick go and it all seemed rather seamless and responsive. With the game being free of charge for Desura users, it looks like it will be a great way for Goldfire to attract a lot of new players.
If Goldfire keeps this up, they will have a much larger game on their hands. Best of luck.
LaunchOklahoma, a venture accelerator based in Oklahoma City, has brought Goldfire Studios co-founder Luke Simkins in as an alumni mentor. Luke joins James Simpson, fellow Goldfire founder, along with a number of other professionals from various industries in Oklahoma including PiyushPatel, founder of Digital Tutors.
Luke is an alumni of our first graduating class in 2012 and CTO of GoldFire Studios, a web-based game development company in Oklahoma City.
Luke is co-creator of CasinoRPG, a realtime massively-multiplayer game with tens of thousands of players from over 50 countries across the world. He is also a co-founder of Oklahoma Game Developers, an organization focused on cultivating the entrepreneurial and creative spirit of game creators in Oklahoma.
For those who don’t know, Luke and James worked with LaunchOklahoma, at the time known as VentureSpur, during the time leading up to their Kickstarter for Casino RPG and for a while after. The Goldfire duo hold a lot of respect for LaunchOklahoma and the service they perform.
As a member of LaunchOklahoma’s only game company to participate, we will be interested in seeing what Luke and James’ influence will have on the companies that seek LaunchOklahoma’s services and help. They have certainly done a lot for the local games industry through the organization of the game developer meetups in OKC.
Starting off the discussion, Luke and James spoke about their efforts to unify the game industry in the state. They have worked to create a game developers group found at OKGD.org. This is the group that holds the Monthly Meetups. They have been doing this because there is no big game development scene in the state. Those interested in game development are scattered across the state and it is necessary for us to have regular networking meetups.
As for what the best path is for getting into gaming, the panelists agree that the best way to start is to just make games. Matt expressed that you have to have a passion too. You can’t just approach it casually and hope to be successful. They also name drop Oklahoma Christian University, one of the top rated schools in the US for game development programs.
They have also expressed support for several do-it-yourself style learning opportunities such as Digital Tutors and Code Academy. You can also begin with plug and play game engines such as Unity to help you get started.
They next went into a discussion of what it takes, emotionally, to work in games. Luke and James told of their experiences trying to promote their game Casino RPG and being faced with vitriol from people who hate free to play games with a passion.
The conversation then went to Kickstarter and running a crowdfunding campaign. James and Luke both successfully funded Casino RPG through Kickstarter. In this portion, the conversation was around how you will need to really work on your marketing skills to succeed.
When it comes to game ideas, you really have to put some work into making sure it is the right one. James suggested putting your idea on the back burner for while and then revisiting it months or so later and checking if you are still excited about it. If you are, then you should go with it. Matt responded about how you shouldn’t be ambitious with your idea. You should scale back on some of the extraneous stuff and bringing it back down to something feasible.
On the topic of polish and releasing games, Matt and James had a bit of a disagreement. James is an advocate for releasing early to win fans while Matt expressed the idea that you should wait until your game is ready and perfect. This was a very interesting part of the conversation. There are certainly pros and cons to both sides of the debate.
Finally, the conversation closed with a question about building a team and how such a team should find a leader. When it comes to finding team members, it is a matter of connecting with other like minded game developers. When it comes to leading, Matt expressed a need to have a clear leader. Without one, he feels that a team might not make it. Luke on the other hand talks about how a creative process needs mutual respect among the team and that a single person or group of persons who try to build themselves up could be detrimental to the creative process.
All and all, it was a great panel and well worth watching. These are the kinds of events that are great for building the games industry in Oklahoma. We hope to see more of these panels in the future.
Bitcoin has been growing rapidly over the last few years as an alternative currency mostly used online. It has especially taken a liking by those in the tech community. So it is no surprise to learn that one of Oklahoma’s own game developers are not just using it, but accepting it as a payment option.
Goldfire Studios has made an announcement that it will now accept Bitcoin as a payment option for all its Goldfire Network games including its latest Casino RPG. Continue reading
In his blog post featuring the video, James pictures a world in which games can help bring people the world over closer together.
I envision a future where communities are no longer constrained by their physical boundaries. Where your closest friends are scattered across the globe, not simply in your backyard. Movies, books and music are great art forms, but they don’t have the inherent power to truly connect the world in a fundamental way. Truly social games have that power, and they are going to change the world.
James certainly has a great vision of social gaming and his work on Casino RPG and other HTML5 games has been geared toward that goal. As games rely more and more on online interactions, the ability to develop friendships and other relationships with the people you meet online will grow with it.
Over the last few weeks, there has been a lot of attention paid to a mobile game going by the name Flappy Bird. This game, with its simple concept of flying a bird through a series of pipes, sprung from nowhere to the top of the iOS free game charts. It is addictive, fun and brutally difficult.
Rather than celebrate the success of the game and its creator, the larger populous vilified him and his game. They sought to find any all fault with the game and the creator and use those faults to tear down his success. This all culminated in the developer, Dong Nguyen, pulling the game. All throughout this affair, Dong would get a lot of abuse from both players and haters alike. People threatened his life, demeaned him and were overly aggressive toward him.
In response to all this abuse, James Simpson of Goldfire Studios has written a post in solidarity with Dong. Titled “Flappy Bird Reveals The Truth In Gaming“, James shares some of his own experiences with people who send him abusive emails.
In our own experience as a small indie studio (with nowhere near the reach that Flappy Bird achieved), we see all sorts of nastiness directed our way on nearly a daily basis. The sad thing is that developers are often told to just “ignore it.” This works to an extent, but developers are human too, and it is hard not to read these things. You wake up in the morning, energized and ready to work on your dream game, and by lunchtime you begin to question if the long hours are really worth it. We know how you feel, Dong, you aren’t alone in the fight.
It really is a shame that people have devolved to such behavior online, and often offline as well. While it is fair to receive harsh criticism at times, it is not fair to let those criticisms escalate to the point where the recipient fears for their life or is pushed into a state of depression.
Why is it so hard for people to celebrate the success of others? Is it simple jealousy that they have achieved a success we can only dream of? Or is it more deeply seeded than that?
We express our condolences to James and Dong for the trouble they experienced releasing video games to the public. We also express congratulations for their many successes. It is not easy to make games and publish them. It is even hard to find the right formula for success.
As for those who resort to the type of behavior expressed toward Dong and James, we ask you to seriously reconsider your actions. Put yourself into their shoes and ponder whether you would feel comfortable being on the receiving end of your own actions.
Until then, we hope that the positive people will begin to shine brighter throughout the games industry, the games media, and the gamers. This is a wonderful pastime and it would be a shame to ruin it.
Today is the day to get in on the hot casino action if you were not part of the limited Kickstarter backed closed beta of Oklahoma’s own Casino RPG by GoldFire Studios. This public launch means an end to game data resets and a preservation of the hard work you put into building your own casino empire. In an email message sent out today they lay out the announcement.
We are excited to announce that CasinoRPG is now in open beta and there will be no more resets! Over a year of development and closed beta testing has gone into this release, and we are really proud of the results.
In case you forgot, CasinoRPG is a massively multiplayer online game that merges role-playing, tycoon and city-building with casino games like poker, blackjack and slots. Like all of our games, CasinoRPG can be played for free right from your browser. Continue reading
The game looks to be coming along quite nicely and Goldfire is working toward opening up the beta soon. We will let you know as soon as that happens.
There is also a side by side comparison of the new trailer vs the one used during the Kickstarter. This shows off nearly all the improvements to the game in the six months since the Kickstarter closed. You can read the rest of the announcements and watch the video at Goldfire’s blog.
Follow Goldfire on Twitter: @GoldFireStudios