The primary reason I got back into game development was stumbling upon a new and upcoming series of children’s books. I knew right away that The Artist could see his concept becoming not just a game, but several styles of games. I had no idea I could ever pull it off by myself. But I knew if I could just turn his books into videos, Reading Rainbow style, I could help make the project happen, and then at least have some involvement in designing the inevitable game.
There is so much potential behind the characters and world that The Artist has built, that for me to take ownership of it would only stifle it. And I know without a doubt that if any big company got their paws on his work, something like this would never happen.
What we are willing to do with The Big Game should be impossible, but maybe that’s what will make this project so revolutionary. My Sidekick and I, although I’d say I’m the Sidekick, are considering doing something with this project that no one else ever has. The JEOZ Engine will be open-source, and on top of that, the characters for The Big Game will be Open License.
Any indie game developer who is equally as inspired by this concept as we are, will some day be allowed to make a game using the same characters. All of the models I have designed for The Big Game will be free to use as well, so the artwork will be consistent.
Creating characters and worlds is very difficult work, and seems to be a pretty rare skill. So it’s no surprise that there are so few “open source characters” that any indie developer can use like this.
I know some are thinking the same thing anyone in this position feels. “If we let anyone use these characters, it will cheapen the brand.” The way I see it, the particular concept behind my Sidekick’s project has too much integrity and meaning to it. If anyone tries to use these characters simply to cash in on them, they’ll just be making a total fool of themselves, and bringing down a project created with much better intentions.
Whenever something is created with genuine love and passion, people can smell it from light years away. And greed has a stench that knows no distance. I am not going to be greedy about this project just because I found it first. And I’m not going to let my personal attempt at turning it into a game have a negative impact on The Artist’s project, and make his project lose momentum just because gamers wish I had handled things differently.
All that really matters to me is that the general public’s first impression of these characters is based on my attempt at bringing them to life. I’ve been able to have more than enough control and influence on the direction this game could take. So much so that now I’m more interested in what other game devs can come up with.
Once you see the project, you’ll understand why this is a big deal. Even the concept itself is part of why it makes sense for it to be so open like this. I can’t explain why until I reveal the whole project, but it’s very hype-worthy.
And I don’t want to scare you off with the word “educational”, I mean in order to win the game you shoot up hundreds of enemies. Learning is optional and/or accidental. But this game is loaded educational elements, and if you pay attention, you can learn something from it. While blowing up billions of bad guys, of course.
I don’t want to over-hype it, after all, it’s based on children’s books. Personally I consider them the most amazing, epic, and awesome series of children’s books I’ve ever seen, but it’s for the kids, nonetheless. Parents and teachers will be more excited about this than most gamers.
But to those who will be interested, this is very exciting stuff. Stay tuned for more.