warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/buckman/public_html/neo/modules/taxonomy/ on line 33.
Matt Barton's picture

Matt's Dev Diary 004: Lighting and Characters

Today I spent most of my time working with Blender. The first order of the day was to learn all about lighting. Blender has a dizzying amount of options for this, but I'm not even sure I'll need any of it so I didn't spend a lot of time here. UNITY has its own lighting system, and I'm not sure to what extent I'll be able to use lights I make in Blender anyway, but I figured the knowledge would be transferable in a general sense. In any case, it is fascinating (and addictive) to just experiment with all the lighting options and see how they affect shading and such. You can really get some nice shading effects with different kinds of lighting. Here's just an example:
Cube with LightsCube with Lights
The next chapter was on Character Animation, and the author pointed out two different people-making tools you can use. Both were free in terms of cost: Make Human and Daz Studio. While you can try to make humans from scratch, these tools essentially give you an interface similar to those seen in games like Skyrim where you can adjust and tweak your face, nose, etc. The exciting part is that you can export your creations into Blender. I may know next to nothing about modeling and animation, but even I can use these interfaces and my combat mode looks a helluva lot more feasible.

Matt Barton's picture

Portal meets Platforming: Invertion

Invertion: Is that GLADOS?Invertion: Is that GLADOS?I love Portal, and I love a good platformer. What do you get when you combine the two? Invertion! Go check out this awesome free game by my friends at HighUp Studio, game developers from Bogota, Colombia! My good friend David Arcila did the great artwork. The music is also excellent. I love it! Go play it now.

Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 129: A Chat with Graphics Guru Mark Soderwall

This week begins my interview series with Mark Soderwall, an awesome guy with 20+ years in the industry. His resume is huge, with jobs at Mindcraft, Atari, and LucasArts. He's worked on games NBA Live, the Terminator games, Demon Stone, and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, just to name a few. Now he's devoted himself to training the next generation and inspiring indie developers with his Game Creators Vault. Enjoy!

If you haven't supported the show, don't be a scrooge! If you like these videos, please put a dollar in my stocking!. Come on, McDuck, it's Christmas! As always, you can download the MP4 for playback on your mobile device.

Matt Barton's picture

Announcing Thrust Lifter: A New Game by Matt Barton

Just in time for Christmas!

Armchair Arcade is proud to present a spanking new game from Matt Barton: Thrust Lifter!

Thrust LifterThrust LifterSpace. For most people, it's just an abstract concept, like Hollywood or an honest politician. For you, it's a day job. Sure, you won't find "rescuing trapped space miners" on your resume, but that's because you don't have a resume. You're known in this galaxy simply as "The Captain." Most folks think you're a hero. Others think you're just plain nuts. But one thing's for sure--they all call YOU when it's a matter of life or death.

You see, mining has never been the safest occupation, but multiply it by ten--make it a a hundred--when you're talking space mining. The rewards are great, but so is the danger. When all you've got is a half centimeter of neoprene-coated nylon between you and vacuum, though, it's nice to know that someone like you is up there watching your butt.

It's never been easy, but I don't have to tell you that, Captain. But now we're getting reports of unidentified flying objects in sector 42--aliens, if you can believe it. All the other pilots are too spooked to even enter the sector. I need you go there, Captain, and rescue those Chilenoids. Get'em out of the tunnels and mountains and bring them back to their home base.

I suspect this is a one-way mission, Captain. So I'll just say goodbye, and it's been an honor serving with you.


Admiral Blount

Thrust Lifter is a game of timing and precision. Guide your lander into narrow tunnels, avoiding collisions with walls, fires, lava, electricity, and all manner of aliens. Get to the Chilenoids before they run out of oxygen and bring them back to the home pad before taking off to your next destination.


  • 15 beautiful, massive levels for you to navigate
  • Five original songs composed by Matt Barton with keyboards and real electric guitar
  • Amazing fire, lightning, and particle effects
  • Sprites built from 3D graphics made with Blender
  • Two boss fights
  • Compete to finish levels in the shortest time
  • High score list
Matt Barton's picture

Thrust Lifter Registration Information

Dear Indie Gamer:

So you're thinking about buying your own registered copy of my game Thrust Lifter?

Bill Loguidice's picture

The Humble Indie Bundle #4 - Seven more Mac, Linux and Windows games for a price you name!

There's a new Humble Indie Bundle, #4, so of course we couldn't help but mention it. Contribute what you want for a bundle of up to seven awesome DRM-free games on Windows, Macintosh, and Linux: Shank, Super Meat Boy, NightSky, Jamestown, Bit.Trip Runner, Gratuitous Space Battles, and Cave Story+. You can choose your contribution to go to any split of Developers, Charity, and Humble Tip, the latter of which goes to Humble Bundle Inc. itself.

Give the promo video below a watch as well, as it's pretty darn entertaining in its own right:

Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 126: Jay Barnson on Dealing with Criticism

Hi, guys! I'm back this week with part 3 of my interview with Jay Barnson. This is probably my favorite segment, with some really heartfelt discussion about dealing with criticism and struggling on despite a lack of financial resources. There's also plenty of sight gags, including a special Skyrim book, a blistering "major site" review of Frayed Knights, and much more!

I'm up to 6,324 subscribers--still 676 left to go if I'm going to make my 7K by 2012 goal. Please help spread the word by posting this or other episodes on your favorite blog, forum, or social networking sites.
Download the video here: mattchat126.mp4.
Download the audio here: mattchat126.mp3.
As always, if you like what you see, consider setting up a subscription ($5 a month is most excellent) or one-time donation. The subscriptions work great; just set it and forget it, no need to bother with it again. And you can, of course, cancel at any time. $5 a month is nothing to you, but everything to me. :)

Chip Hageman's picture

Dino Run SE Free until 10.10.2011

From the Site: Dino Run SE is a retro-styled, action-packed prehistoric racing game that can be played by yourself or with up to 3 other players in many different multiplayer levels. This new version is an update and expansion of the original web game.

Basically, Dino Run SE is a retro style platformer where you take on the role of a dinosaur trying to outrun the fiery apocalypse caused by the shockwave of a large meteor impact. The debris cloud is always just a few feet behind you... run like mad, catch a ride from a pterodactyl, eat up smaller creatures.. time your jumps to go from hilltop to hilltop.

Even though the website claims the offer is only good until Oct. 9th.. This finely tuned indie classic is actually available for free until Oct. 10th. So head over soon and grab a copy before this promotion expires. (Click Buy Now and enter Free for your price)

BTW: You also get the games soundtrack for free when you download the game.

You can also play the original web based flash game here to get an idea of the gameplay.


Matt Barton's picture

Matt Chat 113: Jonas Kyratzes on Politics and Indepedent Game Development

In the last part of my interview with indie designer Jonas Kyratzes, we discuss his latest projects, including Alphaland, Phenomenon 32, The Strange and Somewhat Sinister Tale of the House of Desert Bridge, and You Shall Know the Truth. This last game is based on the Wikileaks controversy and leads Jonas into a sure-to-be-controversial discussion of politics in America and Europe.

Remember to check out Jonas' blog at

Download the mp4.

Bill Loguidice's picture

The Humble Indie Bundle #3 Mach 2 - Another Amazing Deal for Windows, Macintosh and Linux Gamers!

One of our favorite "Pay What You Want", "DRM Free", "Cross Platform", and "Helps Charity" offers, The Humble Indie Bundle, is back for the third time (though, I think they already used #3!). The games in this bundle are Crayon Physics Deluxe, Cogs, VVVVVV, Hammerfight, and And Yet It Moves, and they work on Windows, Mac, and Linux (Steam key included!). So, head on over, name your price, and get playing!

Syndicate content