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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.

Heat Signature’s Launch, And First Player Legend

A Leftfield Solution To An XCOM Disaster

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

My Duke Nukem Forever Video Review




Richard: Wow, mine was much less exciting. I need to be more Rebellious.

http://www.richardco... ...m-forever/

Tom Francis: Hah, sorry, I totally missed yours till now - didn't know you'd already done the chair thing. It's still pretty riveting second time round though.

Richard: I like the fact that they bothered rendering all those girls to stand outside the window, but not to make them look remotely interested.

Richard: I like the fact that they bothered rendering all those girls to stand outside the window, but not to make them look remotely interested.

LeSwordfih: Also, the one in red looks like she was trying to climb the building but gave up halfway.

Chris: I know everybody hates it but I enjoyed it. I actually liked the platforming section in Duke Burger. It definately wasn't what I was hoping for, but kind of expected.

sQUEAKYfOAMpEANUT: Looks like we "Always Bet" on the wrong horse.

Mike: This is brilliant, it has spinny chairs? IT HAS SPINNY CHAIRS?

Jackrabbit: Those girls look like automatons, that was scary.

Davie: I have no doubt that he review is far more interesting than the game, simply by virtue of not being the actual game itself.

Urthman: On a scale from 6 to 10, how mortified should PC Gamer feel about giving this game an 80%?

Matthias Zarzecki: I thought this would be a minute of you jumping in front of the mirror. That video totally would have worked.

Tyshalle: I think PC Gamer may have given it such a high score because the douchebag they had previewing it the first several times couldn't write a single paragraph about it without getting on his high horse and preaching about the immoralities of objectifying women and immature low-brow humor, to the point that half their commentors were bitching about the writer.

That said, every video I've seen about this has basically shown it to be the most boring game ever. Apparently 12 years wasn't enough.

Jason L: Talking about why he wasn't having fun. What a douchebag.

verendus: so... that's a bad review, I take it?

Jason L: Well, you know, there's a lot of artistic ambiguity there. He's left it up to the viewer to bring their own values to the situation.

Caleb: But think of how damn EDGY it is!

PurePareidolia: Indeed.

The funniest part of the PC Gamer review is the guy alternated between making excuses, telling us to lower our expectations and outright complaining, with nary a positive in sight, then he gave it an 80.

Journalistic integrity!

Entropy: That was the PC Gamer US Review, right? I have yet to see a PC Gamer UK review

The Walruscast 7 – Bacon Bound Hiphopogryph | Space Walrus dot Net: [...] The Duke of Nuke, the video Pandy refers to is here [...]

oji: i keep forgetting theres a pc gamer us bcuz they dont have Tom Francis and Richard Cobbet.

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