16 is hard enough. There are dynamic changes in schools as well as friendships and other relationships. For some, this is when you get a job and start making money.Parker Anderson The one-man show behind PlugWorld, took all of that and started developing a game that you could play alone. He’s 17 now, and Weapononeer is about to make a big splash on February 14th (paid).
While Anderson developed the game on his own, its re-release feature provides some extra help in the form of pop game and charity game player. VoxPop was founded by current CEO Charles Yu and COO Marc Rodriguez during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dedicated to game development shortly after college, working in quality assurance in the Apple App Store ecosystem and elsewhere. Rodriguez also has a long history in the gaming industry, having worked at companies such as Capcom and Rockstar Games.
The duo created VoxPop to help projects like Weapononeer and developers like Anderson.
“I wanted to create a platform that indie developers could use to promote themselves and that influencers could use to help monetize their channels and fill the gap between their sponsorships,” Yu said. “I want to create a platform [developers] Can make a living. If you really want to work, you can make it your job. ”
VoxPop is a peer-to-peer game distribution and development platform — a storefront — that hopes to connect developers with streamers, influencers, and perhaps most importantly, players in a way that “a rising tide lifts all boats.” According to the VoxPop website, “We provide developers and influencers with another revenue stream by allowing developers to spend a small percentage of their future earnings towards users and streamers who help promote their games.”
Weaponeer is a retro 8-bit action platformer already available on Google Play and Itch.io because when Anderson felt it was ready, he just released it for free. Eventually, it gained enough traction that Rodriguez and Yu saw the game’s GIFs and images. There are only two things you need to worry about in Weaponeer, making it the perfect game for one-handed play. Wherever the protagonist’s sword points, they’ll go – it’s one button, and you can jump with the other. The concept is really simple, but many of Weaponeer’s levels are particularly challenging.
Rodriguez and Yu like what they see. Rodriguez commented that it played like Sonic Spinball from the 1993 Sega Genesis game, and reached out. The pair spoke to Anderson about VoxPop’s “Made For” label. In the version of Weapononeer made for VoxPop, which launches in storefronts on February 14, you’ll find what is essentially the final version, complete with new exclusive content.
“[VoxPop] Talked to me about finding a charity to donate profits because I really don’t want the money,” Anderson said. “I thought that would be really cool, and they asked me if I had any charities. They recommend AbleGamers. “
Anderson’s games weren’t necessarily designed with accessibility in mind. However, since Weaponeer is a mobile-first game that can be played with one hand, the game is already easier to pick up than many other projects. Between that and his desire to donate the profits to charity, Anderson thought AbleGamers was the perfect fit. So much so that he was ready to donate 100% of his profits to charity, but founder and executive director Mark Barrett immediately vetoed the idea.
“He was like, ‘Hey, I want to give you 100 percent of the proceeds,’ and I kind of said that was a bad idea,” Barrett said. “I told him, ‘I’m really glad you’re willing to do this, but I think you should keep some money because you’re working hard, you need to go to college, and the only thing you can do is have time, so make sure to start from You get something for the time you spend on it.”
Working with AbleGamers to re-release his platformer, Anderson said he learned a lot about game design and development. That’s why Anderson has to get a piece of the pie, Barrett said. If he’s going to keep designing accessible games, he needs the money lest the game development world lose people who work on accessibility.
“This game is really fun,” Barrett said. “Is it an intentional visit or an accidental visit? Or both? I don’t know, but when talking to him he seems to be committed to making a game that is easy to use. But, you know, The Last of Us Part II is an easy-to-play game, but it’s not a single-reel game [like Weaponeer]. I think the single axis thing is also an additional design challenge that makes this title stand out. ”
After some persuasion, Anderson decided to distribute 50% of Weaponeer’s profits to AbleGamers.
“I think we wanted to find an opportunity to share his experience and his work,” Barlet said of why AbleGamers decided to work with Weapononeer’s Made For VoxPop re-release. “I think it’s exciting for a young person, a kid, to use the technology available to make a really cool game. I really want it to be a commercial success, not just because [AbleGamers] is its benefactor, but also because it shows the power of what one can do when one chooses to do something. I hope this young man has a bright future and maybe a change agent in the game industry because it can desperately use something. ”
While VoxPop helped Anderson’s Weapononeer, Anderson reciprocated his favor: he inspired the platform to create a charitable feature that allows developers to do it exactly his way.
“Having the opportunity to talk to all of these developers about their passion for their projects and their passion for trying to make a wider impact outside of the gaming industry … being able to help them have a really rewarding experience these ideas come to fruition,” Yu said. Say.
Rodriguez said VoxPop is a platform he hopes will be available when he’s 17.
“Honestly, what we’re trying to achieve is to raise everyone’s voice and let them know where they want their passion projects to be profitable,” he said. “We want to be the place where developers can become the next viral sensation, maybe like among us…but we also want to be the place where developers can simply publish games to make a living.”
Rodriguez and Yu don’t expect any game to be the next among us, but they certainly aren’t upset about it. They just hope that the developer’s game might be overshadowed by other releases on traditional platforms like Steam, making a bigger impact through VoxPop’s peer-to-peer platform.
“I think there’s definitely pressure when someone is reassuring,” Anderson said. “When you do something for yourself, you don’t really feel too much pressure – you just do it until you’re happy with it [which is what he did with Weaponeer’s original release]. But when you make it for other parties, you have to make sure it’s good…for that platform, [you] Definitely feel that pressure. “
He’s also feeling pressure to re-release a game where a portion of the game’s profits will go to charity, though Barlet says the group is happy to be involved. But Anderson wanted to make the game better, more intuitive, and more accessible. He tweaked the way boosters work in Weapononeer, fixed a mobile platform he found annoying in the first version, and dabbled in quality-of-life changes to improve the overall experience.
Anderson isn’t quite sure what his future holds — he’s only 17, after all. He may continue to work in game development, but he is also interested in video visual effects. For now, though, he’s focused on getting Weapononeer out and raising money for AbleGamers using VoxPop’s unique storefront.
This is Anderson’s first time making a game for someone other than himself, and while he’s nervous about what it means, he’s very excited about Weapon’s Made For VoxPop release. So do Barlet, Yu and Rodriguez.
“Weaponeer will be available on Valentine’s Day, February 14,” Rodriguez said. “It’s like a love letter to the indie gaming community, a community we all love.”
PlugWorld’s Made For VoxPop Weaponeer re-release will be available on PC on February 14, 2022 for $6.99. You can add the game to your wishlist here.