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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.

  • html color: This is the information I am looking for. This article is clear and easy to understand. I’m...
  • Grant: Thanks to the start of this video, I’ve just now noticed that during the static flickers while staring...
  • Ben: Great analysis. During the lab sequence in the Prey intro, you were looking around for tells that Morgan is in a...
  • 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...
  • Rewarding Creative Play Styles In Hitman

    Postcards From Far Cry Primal

    Solving XCOM’s Snowball Problem

    Kill Zone And Bladestorm

    An Idea For More Flexible Indie Game Awards

    Teaching Heat Signature’s Ship Generator To Think In Sectors

    What Works And Why: Multiple Routes In Deus Ex

    Natural Numbers In Game Design

    Naming Drugs Honestly In Big Pharma

    Writing vs Programming

    Let Me Show You How To Make A Game

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

    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

    What Works And Why: Invisible Inc

    Our Super Game Jam Episode Is Out

    What Works And Why: Sauron’s Army

    Showing Heat Signature At Fantastic Arcade And EGX

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

    The Formula For An Episode Of Murder, She Wrote

    Heat Signature Needs An Artist And A Composer

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

    Gunpoint Patch: New Engine, Steam Workshop, And More

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

    Raising An Army Of Flying Dogs In The Magic Circle

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

    Drawing With Gravity In Floating Point

    What’s Your Fault?

    The Randomised Tactical Elegance Of Hoplite

    Here I Am Being Interviewed By Steve Gaynor For Tone Control

    Heat Signature: A Game About Sneaking Aboard Randomly Generated Spaceships

    The Grappling Hook Game, Dev Log 6: The Accomplice

    A Story Of Heroism In Alien Swarm

    One Desperate Battle In FTL

    To Hell And Back In Spelunky

    Games Vs Story 2

    Gunpoint Development Breakdown

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

    My Short Story For The Second Machine Of Death Collection

    Not Being An Asshole In An Argument

    Playing Skyrim With Nothing But Illusion

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

    A Short Script For An Animated 60s Heist Movie

    The Magical Logic Of Dark Messiah’s Boot

    Arguing On The Internet

    Shopstorm, A Spelunky Story

    Why Are Stealth Games Cool?

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

    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

    A Story Of Plane Seats And Class

    Deckard: Blade Runner, Moron

    Avoiding Suspicion At The US Embassy

    An Idea For A Better Open World Game

    A Different Way To Level Up

    How I Would Have Ended BioShock

    My Script For A Team Fortress 2 Short About The Spy

    Team Fortress 2 Unlockable Weapon Ideas

    Don’t Make Me Play Football Manager

    EVE’s Assassins And The Kill That Shocked A Galaxy

    My Galactic Civilizations 2 War Diary

    I Played Through Episode Two Holding A Goddamn Gnome

    My Short Story For The Machine Of Death Collection

    Blood Money And Sex

    A Woman’s Life In Search Queries

    First Night, Second Life

    SWAT 4: The Movie Script

    I Like That You Can Slow Down

    Great new music is being released rapidly and randomly. Let me review some of it and give you some tracks.

    Architecture in Helsinki – Moment Bends

    Helsinki seem to reinvent themselves a little with every album these days. That Beep, the first single from this, has been out for almost three years, and is so funky and divergent that I’ve been itching to hear the rest of their latest experiments for way too long.

    Surprisingly, Moment Bends is more conventional than their previous stuff: That Beep is nuts, but it’s more or less alone. The rest are polished pop, obvious but effective hooks and sometimes openly sentimental lyrics. Yr Go To is narrowly the best, for blending that with a slightly spacey feel, as if they got distracted while idly producing a great pop song.

    Despite the loss of quirk, it’s a great album and easily the best of these three. The only bad track is Contact High, which they’re inexplicably using to promote it. It’s not just the worst track here, it’s the worst thing they’ve ever done. It has a last-verse key change, for Christ’s sake – why is that still legal?

    £7.49 Amazon MP3

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    The Sounds – Something To Die For

    I only just got this, but Yeah Yeah Yeah is an instant favourite. The Sounds are usually pretty straightforward rock, but here they’re going a little more electronic – some tracks feel more about rhythms and samples than the conventional structure they’ve stuck to before. On Yeah Yeah Yeah it’s excitingly new, but the rest of the album isn’t standing up to Rubicon yet (see I’ve Got Confessions To Make).

    £7.90 Amazon MP3


    Low – C’mon

    A few highlights here, not least the tumbling Try To Sleep (below). Especially Me (and probably you, the chorus adds) is another – disarming and gorgeous. Nothing But Heart is the one with the gut-wrenching distortion in what I guess you’d call a trailer for the album, but in the rest of the song the endless repetition of the title grates enough to distract from the wall of guitar.

    The former two would have been at home on The Great Destroyer, a freakishly perfect album, so C’mon is a step up from the bleaker Drums & Guns.

    £7.90 Amazon MP3

    Bret: Agreeing on the Sounds.

    Good, and I'm liking it better on further listens, but nothing even comes close to I've Got Confessions to Make.

    Ed Fenning: I've been liking "Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros" recently, particularly these two songs - ...n-Rp2InGdA ...jFaenf1T-Y

    Other than that there's "I need a Dollar" by Aloe Blacc, a nice traditional rythmn and blues track - ...R6oYX1D-0w

    If anyone has Spotify, do you mind dropping some sunny tracks into a playlist? I'm just getting anyone and everyone to add a few songs-

    http://open.spotify.... ...vhDxxBBKqu

    Nersh: Hey, some good songs by bands I've never heard of before! Thanks for the heads up!

    westyfield: I agree with you on The Sounds - Crossing The Rubicon is their best album so far. I haven't heard much Architecture In Helsinki before, I probably should have.
    Also - where can I get a suit like the chap on the left of that picture? WANT.

    Lack 26: I actually like the first two Sounds albums better, mind you, I don't actually own CtR so haven't listened to it as much.

    I got turned towards some new bands the other day,

    Fever Fever - ( ...qFVNw0pV6o) I like the high-temp beats, something not common in most of the music I listen to.

    Big Deal - ( ...S1XrH9077Q) Kind of get a Warpaint vibe from this band.

    John & Jehn ( ...dxJhzyNPbo)

    Most of the other things I've been listening to are well known bands like The National, Arcade Fire, Los Campesinos! and, Matt & Kim.

    James: AIH are one of my favourite bands. I'm going to see them next week for the second time, they are absolutely brilliant live.

    cheers for the recommendations. I quite enjoyed The Sounds but Low not so much.

    anyway, try out some of these.

    Northcote by The Bedroom Philosopher ( ...xZiae16Ry8) so it's a comedy song, but it's catchy and bitchy and I love it.

    Black Bugs by Regurgitator ( ...CA7--Qcp78) so the song's 14 years old now, and Regurgitator haven't released anything of quality since the early 2000's. but the first two albums are wonderful, and more than make up for their current crap.

    Greg! The Stop Sign! by TISM ( ...wI2NrVYqIE) my absolute favourite band of all time, the chorus of this song just sticks in your head. they put on some absolutely insane live shows, but they broke up after their guitarist died.