All posts


Game development








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.


By me. Uses Adaptive Images by Matt Wilcox.

  • RoboLeg: this game would be PERFECT for mobile, and I’d happily pay 10 bucks or so for it.
  • Jepp: 1) Please keep critiquing games by building new ones :) 2) The non-hand holding, simple systems integrating...
  • Jack: Are you going to release Morphblade for iOS or the Nintendo Switch? I would really like to play this on my...
  • Spaceman Moses: One-eyeing this on my phone from the depths of my covers I lazily ask: what do you mean XCOM2 clarity...
  • kripto: For what it’s worth, I also like Morphblade more than Imbroglio. Although, to be fair, I’ve also...
  • 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


    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


    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


    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 Short Script For An Animated 60s Heist Movie

    Dark Messiah

    The Magical Logic Of Dark Messiah’s Boot


    Arguing On The Internet


    Shopstorm, A Spelunky Story

    Stealth Games

    Why Are Stealth Games Cool?


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

    Suspicious Manifesto

    The Suspicious Developments manifesto


    GDC Talk: How To Explain Your Game To An Asshole


    Listening To Your Sound Effects For Gunpoint


    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


    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


    A Woman’s Life In Search Queries

    Second Life

    First Night, Second Life

    SWAT 4

    SWAT 4: The Movie Script

    Trust Me With Your Ears: Volume Two

    A regular feature in which I ask you to listen to a sound file with absolutely no idea what it’s going to be. Sometimes, after listening, you still won’t have any idea. Other times it’ll be obvious.

    This was inspired partly by trying to clear out my downloads folder – I shoved all the unknown MP3s onto my player and listened to them on my way into work, never having any idea what kind of thing was coming next, only that I had for some reason deemed it download-worthy. It took me a long time to remember what the hell this was, and I still have no idea where I got it.

    Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


    Fish #641: It sounds like a failed idea for a Disney movie. Which is actually kind of hilarious if you just think about it.

    Fish #641: Sorry for the double post, but I just figured out what the song's based on. Hahahaha I used to love that movie. Aren't they supposed to be making a remake of it?

    SenatorPalpatine: I got it a minute in, and got bored of it a minute later.

    Still, a good idea, even if I don't like the music.

    Mr. Brit: that media player is not iPod friendly. I'll reserve judgement for now.

    FraktuRe: Sounds ridiculously familiar, yet I can't place it.

    ZomBuster: Ah that's great. Murphy it's youuuuuuu

    not saying where it's from.

    ZomBuster: oh it's from

    The Rev. Name Withheld: After figuring out exactly what this is, it's the most hilarious thing I've experienced all day.

    Vitalis: So glad that I'm not just going crazy 'cause I recognise it for some bizarre reason.

    Velvet Fist, Iron Glove: I love spoof musicals.

    Also, I think this is the first time Google has failed me when searching for song lyrics to find the source.

    Wolf The Widowmaker: After googling around for some of the quotes, I decided that I should see the movie. Thanks, Tom!

    Simon: I won't spoilerz it on people who are still guessing, but that's got to be the best premise for a musical EVER.

    Hermes: It kind of sounds like Final Fantasy. And I mean the band, not the silly japanese rpg tomfoolery. ...38;sr=1-10

    Hermes: Also where is the bit in the song describing a henchman splattering across a windshield?

    Tom Camfield: That was: Cool.

    Rosti: Absolutely beautiful pacing. You have kept my aural trust this time, Francis...

    (Also, is anyone else getting a Dr Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog vibe from this?)

    Pod: Cool.

    Mr Brit: If you get this via RSS then there's just a normal mp3 download link instead of a media player thingy.

    Pod: ahahahah second time through I finally figure out which movie it is from!

    Tom Francis: There's a download link in the normal post, too, so I assumed he just meant he was downloading it for later.

    Niko Kruzel: What's the embedded player used?

    Nathangrubb: Who designed this website? This is way too huge to even be usable, it took me a damned while to even find the play button

    Jason L: Yeah? It's 2cm by 7mm here, and the play button is a triangle just like Mum used to cook. Perhaps you could include some details - they'd fit nicely into the space where insults currently reside.