Quite a Gridrunnery time at the moment.
1: Gridrunner nominated for the Golden Joysticks awards.
In the mobile/tablet category. Which is nice. However since to win it you have to get the most votes from fans, and since in fact I’ve sold a quantity of games such that I could probably comfortably remember the names of every customer, I figure that’s supremely unlikely. But it’s nice to be nominated nonetheless. I’d be delighted to be proven wrong mind, so if you feel inclined to vote then please go ahead, that’d be lovely. Buy a copy of the game too, that’d be terrific too. Get your mates to buy a copy too. Ten copies in fact. Get them to get all their relatives to buy copies and vote for Gridrunner in the Golden Joystick Awards until our entire glorious nation sweeps us to overwhelming victory, sweeping aside the likes of foreign Angry Birds and creating a swell of national pride greater even than that engendered by coming third in the Olympics, causing tears of joy (of PURE TEA) to stream down the Queen’s face and Clive Sinclair to lie down with Chris Curry in peace and harmony!
Yes. That’s what I’m hoping will happen. It’s actually more likely than selling a significant quantity of iOS games or Apple actually putting one of my games in their so-called retro section.
2: Gridrunner now available for Mac OS X!
Despite being delayed for being rejected for important technical reasons (the title of the helpfile used the letters “OSX” in a forbidden way and had to be expunged) the Mac port of Gridrunner is now available on the Mac App Store. You can find it at the following lovely link of joy.
Plays well with keys or a USB Xbox 360 joypad on any Mac but is absolutely most sublime if you have a trackpad, either a desktop Magic Trackpad or a recent-ish Mac laptop. If you’re using the trackpad remember to put the game fullscreen.
We’ve charged a full £2 for this game despite it not being significantly different from the iOS one really, simply because we thought we could get away with it. And now we’ve been through the OSX submission process and know what to avoid (never mention the system or OS you’re running on) we can crack on with pushing out the rest of the ports. Next up will be Super Ox Wars, and the probably GoatUp after that. (All the ports are already actually working, just needing a final going over to ensure compliance and proper cursor behaviour).
3: Gridrunner FREEMIUM (I hate that word) coming to iOS!
I think part of the problem with the iOS stuff is as I’ve mentioned before, since it’s never actually likely to appear on the front page of the app store pretty much the only people who buy the games are people who are actively looking for them; for people just browsing to find a new game it’s about as hard for them to find Llamasoft games as it was for Arthur Dent to find the famous road bypass plans that were on display in a locked, unlit cellar with a sign on the door saying “beware of the leopard”. Accordingly I’ve decided to try making a free version of Gridrunner in the hope that some more people may pick it up because FREE and then maybe possibly buy the IAP (there’s only ONE IAP) to unlock the full game.
The free version actually contains an extra mode, a “Survival” mode where you have one life and play over a looping sequence of 6 levels that get harder with each loop around. That mode is free and you buy the IAP to unlock the rest of the game (containing the usual Pure and Casual modes from the paid version of the game). I’ve also rejigged the game so that it uses only Game Center, since Openfeint is now turning into something else anyway and it’s pointless including a lot of extra overhead in the game when all I need is the leaderboards and cheevos already provided by GC.
It also has an extra feature whereby you can touch a Llamasoft sheep icon and it takes you to the App Store where you can see “bloody hell this chap’s done a lot more games and look they all have 4 to 5 star ratings” so maybe it’ll push up sales of the games already out there.
This new version is just about done, I sorted out all the IAP gubbins this last week and whould be ready to bung it off to Apple next week some time. Perhaps chucking a free version will deliver us some of the precious MARKET PENETRATION that we desperately need (who doesn’t need a nice bit of PENETRATION once in a while let’s face it). Or maybe it won’t make a damned bit of difference, who knows.
But I thought it’d be worth a try. Maybe soon the Sun will be posting pictures of Prince Harry naked AND PLAYING GRIDRUNNER and a grateful nation of cheery white van drivers will be downloading the FREEMIUM version in droves and upgrading to the full version and voting for us in the Golden Joysticks Awards until David William Donald Cameron and ED BALLS discuss nothing in Parliament together except who’s got the highest score in Gridrunner and what a frightful bugger those little ships that try and go right up your arse are.
IT’S MORE LIKELY TO HAPPEN THAN GETTING IN THE TOP 10.
So: Gridrunner, Gridrunner, Gridrunner, Gridrunner, Gridrunner!