Category Archives: GameTap

Grimm Episode 15 – The Pied Piper

Rat Hole

Rat Hole with Poo

Grimm episodes just keep on coming! You might ask yourself, “How do they do it!? How can they release week after week of awesome, original, episodic content?” Because we’re a machine my friend. A machine. Oh wait, that was last week when “Iron John” was on offer. This week it’s… let’s see… rats! Lots and lots of rats in fact, as Grimm perturbs Piper in Episode 15, “The Pied Piper of Hamelin”. Eeek!

And like any good Grimm episode announcement, this one is accompanied by a review from our old friend David Craddock at BigDownload:

“The Pied Piper isn’t the best Grimm entry, but it is one of few episodes that deviates from its typical formula. Even those familiar with the tale will enjoy racing to the end to see what American McGee and his Spicy Horse cohorts have in store for the children, and those unfamiliar with the story will have even more reason to push forward.”

Not the best, but not the same. Hey, not bad!

Head over to GameTap, Stimulus, or TryGames and give it a nibble. You might like it – even if it is a bit cheesy.

Grimm’s Back! (Almost)

WolfStalker

Nice Wolf, Nice Rabies

Whew! It’s been a while since I wrote a post. Was off in Japan, enjoying some trees, checking out Tokyo Game Show, eating lots of awesome food, and working on The Next Big Thing. Back in Shanghai since last weekend – been catching up on Grimm production, a mountain of emails, and the start of TNBT. Speaking of, we had our official pre-production kick-off meeting today! Big day!

But wait, we’re getting ahead of ourselves! There’s another 16 episodes of Grimm still coming down the pipe. And best of all, these new episodes keep getting better and better. Don’t believe me? Then check out what David Craddock over at Big Download has to say about the next “season” of episodes:

Everything that made Grimm fun has returned, and everything that didn’t appears to have been trimmed away. As someone who often deliberated between yay and nay when it came to Grimm’s first season, I can say with confidence that The Master Thief provides a promising glimpse of what awaits us when Season Two begins later this month.

David goes on to talk about the release schedule for the next series of 8 episodes, which will see Episode 9 “The Master Thief” released on October 30th:

Speaking exclusively to Big Download, publisher GameTap has revealed the full line-up for the next season of developer Spicy Horse’s American McGee’s Grimm. Beginning on October 30, the next season of Grimm features expanded mechanics that allow for a deeper gameplay experience than that of Season One. The title of each new episode, as well as its respective release date, can be found below.

10/30 – The Master Thief
11/06 – The Singing Bone
11/13 – King Midas
11/20 – Cinderella
11/27 – The Golden Goose
12/04 – Iron John
12/11 – The Pied Piper
12/18 – A Christmas Carol

Master Thief is certainly worth a try – we added in a ton of fun content specifically for Halloween. And wouldn’t you know it, Grimm loves Halloween!

I’ve updated the countdown clock on the site so you can keep track of what’s coming and when it’s arrived. As with the first 8 episodes, each new episode is FREE FOR 24 HOURS on GameTap. Set your alarms for October 30th and head over to GameTap for more Grimm fun.

GameTap Merges with Metaboli | Edge Online

Exciting news for GameTap this morning as they merge with one of France’s leading online game and digital entertainment platforms: GameTap Merges with Metaboli | Edge Online
Turner Broadcasting’s U.S.-based games-on-demand service GameTap has merged with European counterpart Metaboli in an effort to create a “global gaming brand,” the companies announced Wednesdsay.

Grimm – Episode 2 – Red Riding Hood

Giant Thimble

“Thumbs up!”

Has it already been a week since we launched Grimm Episode 1?! Man, time flies when you’re releasing weekly episodic content. The response to the first episode has been overwhelmingly positive, with an expected dash of “what the hell is this” criticism tossed in for good measure. All in all a very successful launch of the weirdly innovative little product known as Grimm.

The team here at Spicy Horse has continued to crank on production for upcoming episodes. And now we’re able to start thinking about feedback from YOU, the audience. So, here’s a bunch of random stuff we’re hearing and thinking about:

1. LOTS of confusion over the distribution/pay structure for episodes. Frankly, I think the press outlets are mostly to blame for this. Note how IGN’s Jimmy Thang bungles it when he states, “The first episode of this new adventure series is free on GameTap, but its sequels will not be free.” Wrong. I’ve yet to see more than a handful of reviewers who correctly communicate the model. I don’t know if that’s because they aren’t being fed the right info, or if because the model is so mind-numbingly innovative it causes brain failure. Anyway, the model is this: Episode 1 is TOTALLY FREE FOREVER EVERYWHERE (not just on GameTap). Consider it the Grimm demo. Future episodes are free for 24 HOURS after their initial release on GameTap. Then they become available for a variety of pay methods (subscription to GameTap, single episode purchase, alternate distribution streams, etc). As for how we’re going to repair the “instructions” related to this aspect of their product’s design… only repeated communication of the facts will do the trick. I’d ask that industry press outlets try to help us reinforce the true nature of the distribution model.

2. The game is too EASY, SHORT, CASUAL. The only issue I have with this statement is the “too” – as it creates a subjective opinion. The truth is, the game is designed as a “casual game”. Sure, we used the Unreal 3 engine to develop it, so call it a “next gen casual game” if it makes you feel better. Anyway, the whole point of episodic is to evolve the episodes based on user feedback. So here’s what we’re going to do about “too casual” – in future episodes you’ll see more use of power-ups, areas tuned for more challenging “transformation game play”, and more emphasis on classic platform game mechanics. But try to keep in mind: If you don’t like simple, casual, short games – you might not like Grimm. He won’t like you either. No hard feelings.

3. Much love of the Grimm transformation process, art style, story elements, etc. And some suggestions for improving these aspects of the game and/or linking them more tightly together. We hear you and want you to know: changes should be expected. You’ll see gradual improvements to many aspects of the game art, story, and mechanic over upcoming releases.

If you have thoughts on improving the game or criticism, please post it here in the comments, or head over to the forum on am.com or forum on gt.com to discuss with others. We look forward to your feedback!

OH! And most importantly – Episode 2 is OUT NOW and available for free during the first 24 hours! Go check it out on GameTap. This week: Red Riding Hood

Episode listing update:

A Boy Learns What Fear Is AVAILABLE NOW!
Little Red Riding Hood AVAILABLE NOW
The Fisherman and His Wife Coming August 14
Puss In Boots Coming August 21
The Girl Without Hands Coming August 28
Godfather Death Coming September 4
The Devil and His Three Golden Hairs Coming September 11
Beauty and the Beast Coming September 18

Grimm Episode 1 – Goes Live

Grimm,

“Look ma, No Hands!”

Well, the day we’ve all been waiting for is finally here: Grimm Episode 1 has launched on GameTap!

For me and the team here at Spicy Horse this is a momentous occasion. Everything we’ve worked for and built since starting the studio has gone into the Grimm project – and Episode 1 is the first of many offerings to an audience we hope will enjoy the game as much as we enjoyed making it.

And so far the response has been great:
Ars Technica says Grimm is “simultaneously goofy, child-like, and completely twisted.”
GamePlasma says “Grimm is an excellent example of a great episodic platform game.”
GamesRadar says “Dirtying the pseudo puppet show world is devilishly satisfying…”

I’ve noticed there’s more than a little confusion about the free/episodic nature of the game, which is a shame because, in addition to the fact Grimm’s a lot of fun, the distribution model is quite awesome. So, let’s clear it up once and for all:

  • First, Episode 1 is FREE now, FREE forever. You can access it using a FREE GameTap account. Free, forever, fun.
  • Next, future Episodes will be FREE for 24 hours – again, using a FREE GameTap account. After 24 hours, you’ll need a paid subscription to GameTap and/or you can purchase a single download of an Episode.
  • Finally, there will be alternate digital distribution channels in the near future. More on that before the next episode.
  • Now, I hope that clears things up. Stayed tuned for more cool new regarding Grimm. And be sure to head over to GameTap next week so you can tune in for “Little Red Riding Hood”. Remember, it’s FREE during the first 24 hours!

    Here’s an episode listing for the first 8 episodes:

    A Boy Learns What Fear Is AVAILABLE NOW!
    Little Red Riding Hood Coming August 7
    The Fisherman and His Wife Coming August 14
    Puss In Boots Coming August 21
    The Girl Without Hands Coming August 28
    Godfather Death Coming September 4
    The Devil and His Three Golden Hairs Coming September 11
    Beauty and the Beast Coming September 18

    Enjoy!

    GameTap Adds THQ Titles

    Cow Swing

    “Swing, swing, suicidal steer.”

    I read on Video Game News this morning that GameTap is adding a ton of cool new titles to their service – these coming from THQ. The article provides full details:

    GameTap announced today the signing of a partnership with THQ. This deal will give the broadband entertainment network company access to THQ’s PC titles for digital download, with certain titles available for free play on GameTap’s ad-supported website. The titles included in this agreement include Company of Heroes, Supreme Commander, Titan Quest, Saints Row 2, PuzzleQuest and S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl.

    To read more about these exciting additions, head over the Video Game News.

    GameTap’s quality, offering, and profile is certainly increasing day by day. And with only 6 days until the launch of Grimm, these could prove to be momentous times for the innovative service. As I’ve said before, I think gamers and game developers alike have many reasons to applaud and support digital download publishers like GT.

    We here at Spicy Horse feel a huge amount of gratitude for GameTap (and Ricardo Sanchez in particular) for breathing life into our studio. The Grimm development has given us a chance to not only build a cool game, but to establish a first-class studio in China. Only a few more days… and we’ll see if all our hard work and creativity pays off. Hope you’ll join us in finding out. Be sure to check out the Spicy Horse Grimm Site and official GameTap Grimm Site for more information and news!