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Paul's development blog

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ptrowe

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Paul's development blog

PostFri May 04, 2012 3:02 pm

So, I decided to start blogging here since a) I've never blogged in my entire life and b) Britton is so freaking cool to set this up for us so I might was well make use of it.

First off, I gotta say...the last 35 days have *really* taken it out of me. I had to work from home Wed/Thurs because I was so burnt out from answering emails, comments, forum posts, updates, interviews with the press, making new tiers, oh and doing that whole "running the whole company thing". So needless to say I think I've had a little bit of burnt out. But alas, today is Friday and I'm mostly rejeuvenated. I say mostly because yesterday was a horrible day. I was working from home and I should have just been either a) skydiving (yes, when I'm not making games that's what I do for fun) b) sleeping, or c) watching tv. But knowing the person I am, I couldn't resist checking emails and taking phone calls. Well, that turned out to be a DISASTER. I promise to take off more time in the future.

So, today I came in to work with 302 unread emails. Sounds like a lot right? Well, it is! LOL I think I've got it down to around 50 or so now so I should get out of here at a decent time today (which means before 9 or 10pm). I'm not complaining, making video games is what I love to do so it's really hard to complain about stuff like that when you're living your dream.

What else? Oh yeah...Kickstarter told us it's going to take roughly 30 days to charge everybody's card and get the accounts "balanced" and in to our bank account. Once that happens we'll start sending out the Kickstarter survery to get people's sizes, shipping address, and all that fun stuff. It will most likely be Britton or Jeannette (aka Jeet) doing this on our behalf. So a HUGE thank you to those guys in advance. This isn't going to be fun but it IS going to be fun when people start getting their stuff and posting pictures to our fan pages. I can't wait for that to happen!!!

OK, so I'm going to get back to doing what I do (which I'm still not exactly sure about but I DO know I need to answer these emails).

Have a great weekend everybody. Oh, and I'll do some video blogging here from time to time as well. As long as Britton shows me how to embed a YouTube video in to this damn thing. LOL

Ciao!!!
-Paul
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May 8th, 2012

PostWed May 09, 2012 2:09 am

So, even though it's 3:35am here at "The Bat Cave" which is what I call my home office, I'm still labeling this blog entry as 5/8/12 since I intend on blogging again tonight.

The biggest thing on my mind right now is all the press I've been seeing about people complaining I pushed the gold master delivery date for Larry back until January. I can tell you from the bottom of my heart, THIS IS A GOOD THING. We originally only did a 30 day Kickstarter so we could ship the game by October since 2012 is Larry's 25th anniversary and Al *really* wanted it to come out this year. I *really* wanted it to come out this year. So we rushed the Kickstarter and only did it for 30 days so we could get you guys a game for Q4 2012 and make Al happy to release it on Larry's 25th birthday. Well, as it turns out we surpassed our goal and we're delivering a lot more content. Josh and Al have already started working full time on the new design, game play balancing, all new dialogue (with every character having a unique voice over), the new rooms, etc. If you'll allow me, I'd like to invoke a hero of mine with one of his famous quotes: "A delayed game is eventually good, but a bad game is bad forever." Shigeru Miyamoto said that and it really hit home for me. We've all seen our fair share of games ship early "for the quarter" or "so we can make Christmas", but the best game designers and best development teams in the world ship the game "when it's ready". I seriously don't like being a dick, you guys, but I refuse to ship a game that's not done just so we can make Christmas. We didn't do a Kickstarter for that reason. We did a Kick starter so we can ship the best game we can possibly make using each of our 25+ year development experience. When you add it all up, with Sabine, Leslie, Josh, Al & myself, that's over 125 years of development experience. So please, cut us some slack because we really only have your best interests in mind, and I say that from the bottom of my heart.

Now, what's been up lately? Well, I can tell you that 99% of the money has come in from Kickstarter and pre-production has begun even before the Kickstarter was over. Oded already has a nice working prototype running on top of the Unity engine with the concept art Oran created over a year ago. So, now we're in the design stage with Al/Josh and the pre-pro stage with Adventure Mob.

One of our 14,000+ fans, a guy named Britton Matthews, has taken on so much of our work that we made him a full time employee (he even already has a full time job but he's working this as a 2nd job because he loves Leisure Suit Larry, Al, and the Replay team so very much). He originally planned to just be a volunteer for us (which I have absolutely NO problem with, trust me!) but he's literally done so much work that I wouldn't be able to sleep at night knowing he wasn't compensated for the hard work he's doing running our forums, Facebook pages, Replay Twitter, etc. Basically stuff we call "community management" in the game industry.

If anybody lives in Austin, hit me up on my Twitter since I could *seriously* use an office assistant to help us with product fulfillment, and help our producers focus more on production than shipping stuff out. Since we were extremely careful about budgeting for the physical rewards, we're not using a fulfillment house to ship our stuff like Double Fine is, we're mailing everything out manually. Yes, we know it's going to be a major pain in the ass....trust me.

In other news, we just sent off Top Shot, a AAA game we're making for the History Channel to Apple to get certified for iPhone and iTouch. The iPad version should be submitted soon and I gotta say, for a game based on a reality show...it's pretty fucking cool!!! But don't take my word for it...check it out yourselves when it comes out...it should be any day now. Android is being worked on and we hope to submit that to Google in the next week. The game uses the accelerometer to aim your gun. I originally wanted some AR (augmented reality) functions in the game but we just couldn't make it work and be fun so we shit canned that idea. BUT, you'll appreciate the credits when you play them. We were inspired by Smash Bros and Flower.

So....as soon as wel collect the remaining 1% of the money owed we'll send out the Kickstarter survey to get your sizes and stuff like that. The people that won the limo banners should be getting those pretty soon since they're at the office and all we need to do is send them out. Everything else will have to wait until it's printed and stuff but hopefully we can stagger it so you guys will get drips and drabs throughout the development cycle.

OK, I'm exhausted. It's 4:09am and I seriously need some sleep.

If you want to keep up with my "tick tock" (minute by minute musings) follow me on Twitter. It's not all video game related but is usually very inspiring! I'm @ptrowe

Also, please go to the Replay Games fan page and click LIKE (only if you'd like). We post news there, give away free shit, and every once in a great while Josh or Al will post something to make you split your sides laughing.

Until tomorrow night, and hopefully not too late....
-Paul T.
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ptrowe

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May 9th, 2012

PostThu May 10, 2012 12:20 am

Today I spent most of my day buying airline tickets to Tel Aviv to kick off production for our first Leisure Suit Larry game. I'm so stoked I can barely contain it. It makes all the 18 hour days worth it. We're in serious need of an executive producer to manage Jeannette as well as all the projects we have going on with our development partners. I am in serious need of an assistant....someone to do all the office work and keep me focused on what I do best....making shit happen. Well, off to bed...it's 2:20am and I seriously need to get some z's...
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May 13th, 2012

PostSun May 13, 2012 11:35 pm

So this past week I had the pleasure of meeting one of my former competitors when I was running Pulse Interactive. I met the CEO of India Games, Vishal Gondal. I sold the mobile games subsidiary of Pulse, called Pulse Mobile Games, to SK Telecom in 2006 so we're not competitors anymore. In addition, he just sold his company to Disney Interactive so we have a lot in common. He told me besides visiting family he's always wanted to go skydiving. He's seen my skydiving pictures and videos on YouTube and he's been dying to try it since. After an successful attempt on Tuesday, we were finally able to go this past Saturday.

I took him to Skydive Temple, about 45 minutes north of Austin because it's more of a family oriented drop zone vs. Skydive San Marcos which I consider more of a tourist attraction. Don't get me wrong, I love SSM, but the people at SDT just seem to care more about people and whether they have a good time or not. So in addition to Vishal jumping, he convinced his sister in-law to jump too!! I was fortunate enough to hop on the same plane as both of them and watched them exit as they closed their eyes and jumped to their death. LOL It was awesome!! He posted his video on YouTube so maybe you can find it if you search...not sure if he tagged it or not.

Anyway, today was spent more or less just chilling out and resting. One of my friends told me that sleep deprivation takes awhile to get over, which may be explained by my constant exhaustion. Not sure if it's that or my dead thyroid that made my ass gain over 70 pounds in 4 months last year. I seriously miss being 150 and I refuse to buy an entire new wardrobe.

So, in addition to adding me on Twitter, leave me a comment or 5. I typically answer them all....or at least I try to. If it's something ridiculous I'll just ignore it but it's worth a shot! Sometimes I need to take a break from work and I'll go on my phone and just start tweeting and responding to peeps.

One of our fans put an AWESOME video together of the "girls of Leisure Suit Larry" so I'll post that on our YouTube page as well as Facebook when I get to the office tomorrow.

Well, until next time.....

-Paul
p.s. I'm inserting a special plug here for the guys at AMD for sending me a super BAD ASS video card and the guys from Intel for sending me a super bad ass SSD drive, Sandybridge Core i7 and corresponding motherboard. You guys kick ass!!!

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