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TOM FRANCIS
REGRETS THIS ALREADY

Hello! I'm Tom. I designed a game called Gunpoint, about rewiring things and punching people, and now I'm working on a new one called Heat Signature, about sneaking aboard randomly generated spaceships. Here's some more info on all the games I've worked on, here's the podcast I do, here are the videos I make on YouTube, here are some of the articles I wrote for PC Gamer, and here are two short stories I wrote for the Machine of Death collections.

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By me. Uses Adaptive Images by Matt Wilcox.

Hitman header tunnel

Rewarding Creative Play Styles In Hitman

Far Cry Primal Thumbnail

Postcards From Far Cry Primal

Snowball jack header

Solving XCOM’s Snowball Problem

Kill Zone and Bladestorm

Kill Zone And Bladestorm

BAFTA Featured

An Idea For More Flexible Indie Game Awards

Sectors Header

Teaching Heat Signature’s Ship Generator To Think In Sectors

DXHR Open area

What Works And Why: Multiple Routes In Deus Ex

Heat Signature Natural Numbers

Natural Numbers In Game Design

Pharma Header

Naming Drugs Honestly In Big Pharma

Writing vs Programming

Make A Game Tutorial Thumbnail Featured IMage

Let Me Show You How To Make A Game

New Heat Signature Video: Galaxies, Suction And Wrench-Throwing

Her Story banner

What Works And Why: Nonlinear Storytelling In Her Story

My Idea For An ‘Unconventional Weapon’ Game

From Gunpoint To Heat Signature: A Narrative Journey

The Cost Of Simplifying Conversations In Videogames

Invisible Header

What Works And Why: Invisible Inc

Super Game Jam Header

Our Super Game Jam Episode Is Out

Shadow of Mordor Header 2

What Works And Why: Sauron’s Army

Heat Signature Talk

Showing Heat Signature At Fantastic Arcade And EGX

Projects

What I’m Working On And What I’ve Done

Murder, She Wrote

The Formula For An Episode Of Murder, She Wrote

Heat Signature Wide 2

Heat Signature Needs An Artist And A Composer

Heat Signature Floorplans Header

Improving Heat Signature’s Randomly Generated Ships, Inside And Out

Gunpoint Steam Workshop

Gunpoint Patch: New Engine, Steam Workshop, And More

Distance Header

Distance: A Visual Short Story For The Space Cowboy Game Jam

The Magic Circle

Raising An Army Of Flying Dogs In The Magic Circle

Floating Point Blog Launch

Floating Point Is Out! And Free! On Steam! Watch A Trailer!

Floating Sine

Drawing With Gravity In Floating Point

Fault

What’s Your Fault?

Hoplite banner

The Randomised Tactical Elegance Of Hoplite

Gone Point

Here I Am Being Interviewed By Steve Gaynor For Tone Control

Heat Signature Thumbnail

Heat Signature: A Game About Sneaking Aboard Randomly Generated Spaceships

GRappling Hook Thumbnail

The Grappling Hook Game, Dev Log 6: The Accomplice

Alien Swarm Heroics

A Story Of Heroism In Alien Swarm

FTL Story

One Desperate Battle In FTL

Spelunky Banner

To Hell And Back In Spelunky

Game vs story graph

Games Vs Story 2

Gunpoint Breakdown

Gunpoint Development Breakdown

Max Payne 3

Five Things I Learned About Game Criticism In Nine Years At PC Gamer

This is how you die

My Short Story For The Second Machine Of Death Collection

Clouds

Not Being An Asshole In An Argument

Skyrim Diary - Frostmere

Playing Skyrim With Nothing But Illusion

Mainstream Games

How Mainstream Games Butchered Themselves, And Why It’s My Fault

A-Rock-and-a-Hard-Place-Trio-Jan

A Short Script For An Animated 60s Heist Movie

Dark Messiah

The Magical Logic Of Dark Messiah’s Boot

Arguing

Arguing On The Internet

Spelunky

Shopstorm, A Spelunky Story

Stealth Games

Why Are Stealth Games Cool?

Violence

E3’s Violence Overload, Versus Gaming’s Usual Violence Overload

Suspicious Manifesto

The Suspicious Developments manifesto

GDC

GDC Talk: How To Explain Your Game To An Asshole

Crosslink

Listening To Your Sound Effects For Gunpoint

Happiness

Understanding Your Brain

What Makes Games Good

What Makes Games Good

Seat Quest

A Story Of Plane Seats And Class

Deckard: Blade Runner, Moron

Beneath Suspicion

Avoiding Suspicion At The US Embassy

Open Worlds

An Idea For A Better Open World Game

Level Up

A Different Way To Level Up

BioShock Ending

How I Would Have Ended BioShock

Meet the Spy

My Script For A Team Fortress 2 Short About The Spy

Team Fortress 2

Team Fortress 2 Unlockable Weapon Ideas

Football Manager

Don’t Make Me Play Football Manager

EVE Assassins

EVE’s Assassins And The Kill That Shocked A Galaxy

GalCiv 2

My Galactic Civilizations 2 War Diary

Gnome

I Played Through Episode Two Holding A Goddamn Gnome

Machine of Death

My Short Story For The Machine Of Death Collection

Blood money and sex

Blood Money And Sex

AOL

A Woman’s Life In Search Queries

Second Life

First Night, Second Life

SWAT 4

SWAT 4: The Movie Script

Waa?

I don’t recall where I was when the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center, but I think I’ll always remember that I was sitting right here in the office when Nintendo renamed the Revolution.

Jason L: Yeah. I know both, and I'm reminding myself right now that it's just a games console, just a games console.


I mean, what? GameCube (second-best console name ever, after the Dreamcast) dying because of a "kiddie" image? Years of grooming third-party relationships for a more adult-friendly image this generation? Huge success among older consumers with the DS? Any bells? Guys? Hello?


I'm saying this everywhere I can post: I'm just going to keep calling it the Revo until they somehow force me to do otherwise. Their marketing idiots can go drown for all I care. It could be our own little Nintendo Revolution.

Tom Francis: A games console named after urine.

The_B: The bit that cracks me up in the press release:

"Wii can easily be remembered by people around the world, no matter what language they speak. No confusion. No need to abbreviate. Just Wii."


Come on everyone - let's Wii together!

Tom Francis: Actually, this Wired article in defense of the name is pretty convincing: http://blog.wired.co... ...id=1467976

Peter Hopkins: *sighes*

Jason L: Yes, something like "Wii" would have been great, Mr. Wired Writer. But "Wii" isn't. When your product makes Joe Sixpack snicker as he passes it in Wal-Mart, or when you're homping for the "Wii" to become the cool console for Christmas, something's wrong.



It's actually as simple as this: I could easily have gotten behind "Wi". That evokes the English word, is unambiguous to pronounce, does not specifically evoke toilet humour, and is equally dynamically nonsensical. It would have been a thousand times better.

Tom Francis: That's a good point, actually - it's the double-i that makes it sound more like 'wee' than 'we'.

Peter Hopkins: Have you seen the video of the logo? although I'm unsure of the name, the animatic video is very Nintendo. Really not looking forwaard to the time when you have to walk into a game retailer and ask: "excuse me, may have a Wii please?"
Stock phrase - "Sorry Sir, the company doesn't have customber toilets, haa haa haa"

Lithilk: I see no problem with it. Easy to remember for being plain stupid and all that.

roBurky: I think part of the problem is that we is not a noun. If you use that sound as a noun, it can only mean wee.

Peter Hopkins: The best thing for this is to wait for E3 :) ok so Nintendo claim its legit. but is this punk'd???? best form of advertising = word of mouth

meaning = to recognise our product, start something up that isn't genuine and get people talking about it. Move on... this maybe a complete wind up, from what I've heard (and only as hear say) many legalities have not be registered. does this not strike as odd....



then again it maybe true and I'll eat my shorts if it is. :)

roBurky: It's also the name in Japan and everywhere else in the world, though, where wee does not mean urine. If Nintendo were planning it to be a wind-up, it'd be a bit mean on everyone who doesn't speak english.

Jason L: Yeah, that little conspiracy theory's already been addressed. As far as I know, Nintendo hasn't out-and-out lied to their customers for the last decade, unless you want to count changing their minds on DS. Trademarks take time to be registered.



Every indication is that Wii was cooked up in Japan, with Japan as the primary target market, and the English-speaking departments are just having to put the best spin on it they can. Who knows how they had to lobby to do the announcement early and let us simmer down before E3.

Dave: i think it is a games felxablility AS a game that adds to the greatness; while you could stick to the actuall objectives OF the game i.e., capture all the flags, kill all the enemies, the fact that it lets you do OTHER things in place of those adds to and changes the way one thinks of a "game". i would consider it to be "playing" HL2 even if i am only seeing how far i can launch that baby doll in the begining using the see-saw and some bricks because it is a part of the "game" that i am playing and even though i should be busting Combine heads in i am taking the time to mess around in the environment while playing. i would just never say to someone, "yeah, i'm throwing babies around in Half-Life 2" no, i would tell them i am playing HL2, but i'm just throwing a toddler around in a basket (and seeing how many bullets i can get the Combine to put into it, lol).

Dave: uuuuuuhhh, this was supposed to go with the BF2 pic and that games conversation. . . i have no idea how it ended up here.


but then again i agree with the "just onw i" thing

Tom Francis: Update: I am now officially used to the name. It got said a lot at E3, so I think most attendees have had its humour value hammered out of them.