So how about that Retro/Grade?

General talk about Retro/Grade
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JPrice
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So how about that Retro/Grade?

Postby JPrice » Sat May 24, 2014 6:18 pm

So yeah I finally got around to playing Retro/Grade proper (I say proper but I don't have a GH controller so I had to settle for Keyboard haha :P)

I have to say that you guys made a nice gem of a game there :D
I will admit that on the surface it does seem a little short, like given that the campaign is only around 10 levels. That said I can see where the bulk of the main game lies, mainly being in the challenge mode. Suppose it's just up to the player whether they wish to invest that amount of time into the game. I will say right off the bat that the game looks gorgeous, like the level of effects and how it matches the beat is great :D
Also the gameplay was a nice spin on the usual rhythm game formula, what with it being a hybrid of space shooter and rhythm game. Rather enjoyable :)
Also I have to give major props to Skyler for doing a great job with the music, there are some really catchy electronic tunes here (Personal favourites being A Winner Is You, Retro/Grade Groove and I am Error)

Though I will admit knowing that the game took a total of four years to develop, would I say that the game feels like it did take that long? Not necessarily. I mean don't get me wrong the level of polish there is great and everything runs great but I wouldn't say that level of content there is indicative of four years of work on the game. Like if I was guessing without knowing the development time I would have probably said like around 2-3 years. Although I do know the whole story behind the game as I watched your post-mortem (Which was very interesting by the way :)) so it's clear that you just wanted to put your whole heart and soul into the game, which I do respect.

It's a damn shame that the game didn't do as well as it deserved mind you, I feel like it should have deserved a larger amount of attention then it got. Suppose it's just bad timing (With the rhythm game market dying out) and a lack of marketing. Though I am interested in asking, with Neverending Nightmares are there a lot of lessons that you learnt on Retro/Grade that you're employing into the development of NN? Like how many of the things that you learnt from the development of that game are you actually utilising in this new developmental project? More or less than you expected? Just curious is all haha :D

I will say though Matt, I have a good feeling that you'll do better with Neverending Nightmares. I mean you have a great community on here that will definitely play it. Plus positive word of mouth is a great tool these days, especially in the hands of people with loud voices which there are plenty of in the horror game playing market hahaa
I think NN is definitely something that's been lacking in horror for a while. Just the focus on atmosphere and the honesty that you express within the elements that you put into the game is really noteworthy. Even from the early Alpha footage that I've played, it's just something that feels like it was done with heaps of passion. Sure it might not be the most technically advanced, in depth (mechanically anyway) horror game but it's still great to play. Purely for that sense of honesty and passion that exudes from each aspect of the game. So I hope that it becomes successfull anyway, as you really do deserve it :D

Anyway long story short, Retro/Grade is good fun and has some great music. What more could you ask for from a rhythm game? Hahaha :P
"Always look on the bright side of life"
Check me out on Steam if you like! - http://steamcommunity.com/id/JPrice321/

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matt
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Re: So how about that Retro/Grade?

Postby matt » Sat May 24, 2014 7:17 pm

Though I will admit knowing that the game took a total of four years to develop, would I say that the game feels like it did take that long?

I would say it doesn't either, and I spent the four years on it. hahaha I think so much of what we did is not noticeable, so I completely understand that.

Though I am interested in asking, with Neverending Nightmares are there a lot of lessons that you learnt on Retro/Grade that you're employing into the development of NN? Like how many of the things that you learnt from the development of that game are you actually utilising in this new developmental project? More or less than you expected?

There were a TON of lessons, and I am using even MORE than I expected. Basically, I rethought every aspect of how I approached game development. I like to think what we did on Retro/Grade and then do the opposite. hahah Even this whole open development thing (forums, developer video, frequent kickstarter updates, etc) was a direct response to Retro/Grade. We had Retro/Grade fans from years past at PAX who didn't realize the game was even RELEASED. I decided I needed to KEEP people interested in the game, and I think I'm doing a pretty good job. We also are wiling to accept things when they are "good enough" and are working REALLY hard to keep to our schedule. I had a 6 month schedule for Retro/Grade, a 12 month, an 18 month, and then maybe a 2 year one, and then we just gave up. That was a TERRIBLE idea.

Sure it might not be the most technically advanced,

Retro/Grade was, and that didn't help it at all. I think what is more important is we have one of the most unique horror games, which will hopefully help us carve out a slice of the market.

Anyway, thanks for trying Retro/Grade, and thank you for all your kind words about Retro/Grade and Neverending Nightmares. It means a lot!
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

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JPrice
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Re: So how about that Retro/Grade?

Postby JPrice » Sun May 25, 2014 3:49 am

I would say it doesn't either, and I spent the four years on it. hahaha I think so much of what we did is not noticeable, so I completely understand that.

Well I'm glad that we share the same thoughts and that anyway hahaa. Still I think that you can tell there was a lot of effort put into it so :D

Even this whole open development thing (forums, developer video, frequent kickstarter updates, etc) was a direct response to Retro/Grade. We had Retro/Grade fans from years past at PAX who didn't realize the game was even RELEASED. I decided I needed to KEEP people interested in the game, and I think I'm doing a pretty good job.

I think you're doing a great job! I love being able to freely communicate with the lead designer on a game, makes you feel really involved in the games development :) So you're doing a good job with that!

Retro/Grade was, and that didn't help it at all. I think what is more important is we have one of the most unique horror games, which will hopefully help us carve out a slice of the market.

True yeah, I do agree that having a unique game is more important than a technically advanced one hahaa

Anyway, thanks for trying Retro/Grade, and thank you for all your kind words about Retro/Grade and Neverending Nightmares. It means a lot!

No problem Matt, it was a blast to play and I'm looking forward to the next build of Neverending Nightmares! :D
"Always look on the bright side of life"
Check me out on Steam if you like! - http://steamcommunity.com/id/JPrice321/

Harry Sunderland
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Re: So how about that Retro/Grade?

Postby Harry Sunderland » Mon May 26, 2014 9:10 am

I'm not sure if Matt agrees with me, but I think Retro/Grade is really difficult to play with a GH controller. I tried it out, and I much prefer using a gamepad. Conceptually, my brain processes the flow of the game better thinking from a "shooting" mind-set then a guitar one. Ex: I can beat the game on the hardest difficulty with gamepad, and I can barely play medium with the guitar.

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matt
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Re: So how about that Retro/Grade?

Postby matt » Mon May 26, 2014 7:14 pm

I think even the guitar hero pros find the game easier with the gamepad, but some people are quite amazing at playing it with the gitar.

I have stupid fingers, so I struggle a lot more with the guitar controller - especially with the 5th row. It could be that I have about 5 times more experience playing with the gamepad (just because it's tough developing with a plastic guitar in your lap), but I think in general, it is easier to understand what to do when you only have 2 directions to go instead of 4.

To me, it's almost a different game with the guitar controller. Personally, I like both games, and I had to work a lot harder to be able to beat X-treme with the guitar controller. I don't remember if I can beat all the challenges with the guitar controller. Probably, but I bet I couldn't anymore because I haven't touched a guitar controller in over a year.
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games


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