Eugene is a surprising hotbed of video games: “Tribes,” “Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee,” and “Red Baron” are just a few to be developed in its local studios.
While larger studios like Pipeworks tend to employee the most people, there’s also an active indie scene that is nowhere more apparent than at the Indie Game Con. Hundreds of people filled Lane Community College in October 2015 to play new titles, from space shooters like “XO” and “Star Mazer” to fantasy games like “Villagers & Heroes” to the more unusual, like a game of dueling narwhals called “Fail Whale” and a game of dueling tongues called “Smooth Operator.”
We’re listening back to last year’s broadcast to warm up for this year’s con, which is joining forces with Eugene’s comic con, EUCon, on Nov. 11–13 at the Lane Events Center. We talk to developers about making games and getting game face on for taking their creations out into the world.
Meet our guests:
Ted Brown is the director of Eugene-based Indie Game Con. A veteran of Zynga and Buzz Monkey Software, Brown owns and operates the game studio Oreganik LLC, which developed the app games “Chess Heroes” and “Epic Skater.” He’s also on the board of the trade group Oregon Game Association.
Michael Jones is a Eugene-based sound designer and composer who has been creating audio for games for more than a decade. He chairs the Eugene chapter of the International Game Developers Association, and he’s director of professional development for BitForest, a networking group for Eugene-area game makers. He also composed all the music used in the show.
Britt Brady, lead designer and art director of Cowboy Color Games, has lived in Eugene for about nine years. Involved in the game community for the past two years, he says he’s more of an “abstract creative” than a programmer. Cowboy Color’s game of shooting and blocking, “Charge Shot,” was prototyped during a game jam.
Cullen Dwyer, lead programmer of Cowboy Color Studio, had only recently moved to Eugene when he partnered with Brady to develop “Charge Shot.”
Kate Thomas, producer and co-founder at Portland-based Beardo Games, developed “Smooth Operator” with programmer Chris Harback and artist Miles Neilson. The trio prototyped the game where you compete to be the better kisser for the Ludum Dare global game jam in 2013.
Damon Slye is one of the godfathers of the Eugene gaming community. After co-founding the pioneering game studio Dynamix in 1984, he helped produce games for the Commodore 64 computer and game companies Activision and Electronic Arts. He left the company and the industry in 1994 (Dynamix was acquired by Sierra Online in 1990.) He came back in 2007 with Mad Otter Games. Currently he’s developing an online multi-player fantasy game called “Villagers & Heroes” that emphasizes social interactivity. Mad Otter has also acquired the rights to “Red Baron” and is planning a reboot.
Plus a cast of hundreds of gleeful developers, players, and others who wandered through Lane Community College’s downtown campus in Eugene that day. Press “play” to begin!