1. introducing Faucibus.

    That’s right, Faucibus. What is Faucibus?

    It’s a metaphor for the normalization of oppression. 

    It’s being a minority.

    It’s isms.

    It’s frustration.

    It’s a video game.

    It’s not.

    But it is though.

    It’s dying over and over again.

    It’s a story that might not resonate, but I hope it does; I hope it breaks your heart and I mean that in the nicest way possible.

    It’s 50 levels of masocore platforming that tries to trick you into thinking it’s not 50 levels of masocore platforming.

    It’s a thing, by Sets and Settings, and it should be done by the end of Juli. I don’t know if it will be released at that time, but it might. You’ll be able to play it, somehow, in your browser. 

    We hope you’ll like it.

     

  2. What is the haps, Sets and Settings

    I’ll tell you what the haps is, blog!

    First of all, Andrew has been quite busy with life and also doing web things, so every one should be checking out his site for cool creative stuff and his twitter for cool words. That’s a given.

    Alright, so video games. Sets did Ludum Dare again last month, and it was a blast! We ended up with Huoheian, a survival-based arena shooter where all the enemies you kill turn into spikes, making it increasingly difficult to survive (a neat mechanic that turns out to be very elevator-pitch friendly, as the first half of this sentence demonstrates).

    Check out the game right here. There’s a compo version that has a completely broken balancing issue and a state of the art post-compfaux edition that addresses that completely broken balancing issue. 

    Bonus: Huoheian is the first game to use our new and improved splash screen:

    After that, a NES game jam going on at GameJolt caught my eye, and with 3 days left until the deadline I set out to create the most NESlike of NESlike experiences, which resulted in the absurdly named and absurdly short Steel Novella 2083

    For reasons beyond my understanding, SN2083 has been extremely well-received and kinda blew up when I released it? I’ve seen it pop up at indiegames dot com the weblog, IndieStatik, PCGamer, and it was frontpaged at Newgrounds within minutes of uploading it, somehow.

    Good times!

    So that’s the recent past for you… but what about the recent future?

    Well I’m glad you asked! Valence is still being worked on albeit slowly, I’m working with Glass Bottom Games to bring the world the best noir-style game to ever have existed, Hot Tin Roof, and I’m working on a followup to SN2083.

    Yeah. We got dat work.

    Folmer

     

  3. Valence tidbits and whatnot

    Hey everybody, Folmer here. Been a while since we posted anything so I figured I’d talk a bit about what’s been going on with Sets.

    So aside from our usual messing around with whatever insanity we feel like doing at any given time, we’re still gearing up to do Valence- our roguelike platformer based on an old LD entry we did once - and we want to do it right. Someone on twitter (good lookin’ out, @seemo!) let us know about Bundle In A Box and their Indie Dev Grant, so we thought it would be a neat idea to throw it over to them to see how people respond to it. 

    We’ve also started a devlog for Valence which you can check out right here right now. At the moment it’s a collection of the fragments of screenshots and info we’ve leaked so far, we’ll keep it fresh as development of this freaking monster of a game goes on.

    Secondly, there is a folder in the Sets and Settings dropbox full of 8x8 sprites. Just sprites everywhere, walkcycles and monsters and tiny tiles and everything, as far as the eye can see.

    That’s my doing; I did that. What’s NOT to be found in that folder is an .swf, any code, or anything even resembling Andrew’s doing. I humbly suggest everyone yell at Andrew (@ambushsabre on twitter for easier yelling, you’re welcome) to rectify this situation. 

    Keep it thorough,

    Folmer

     

  4. Source

    Yo! Andrew here. So I took some of the more interested and not-terribly-coded games and put the source on my github. The games included so far are K.O.T.S., Gravnav, and Irrupt. I encourage anyone to take a look at it and use the code in their own projects, but I have to put this disclaimer on there: I may have done some things horribly wrong, or committed some coding atrocity. If you see something like that, feel free to let me know, but I really do hope someone might find something useful in there. My only request is that if you do end up benefiting from it, that you send me a quick email, I’d love to know! 

    Check it out!

     

  5. 201(3)

    2012 was a great year for us, so we wanted to kick the new year off right the only way we know how: By making video games.


    Last week, we decided to have what we’ve dubbed the WEEKEND OF SETS, which spawned 3 games:

    First we released Kastle, a one-button auto-runner about modern day (or possibly futuristic) castles. It was our #1GAM entry for Januari.

    image

    Read more about Kastle here or play it here!  

    Then, Andrew unleashed the 4 player K.O.T.S. The game is about tiny gunslingers with big guns to sling, trying to take control of a saloon. First player to capture the flag wins (and will probably have to take a drink. Losers must always take drinks, by the way. Them’s the rules).

    KOTS!

    Read more about K.O.T.S. here! Includes download link.

    As the final game of WEEKEND OF SETS, we put out Alaska, a game we can only define as a “micro-SHMUP”. Alaska is about the player, the final boss, and the end. 

    Alaska

    Read more about Alaska here or play it here!

    These 3 games are our way of saying “thank you you’re awesome” to the players and fans and indie game devs who’ve supported Sets and Settings throughout 2012, and we are extremely excited to make more games in 2013!

    High fives all around.

    - Andrew & Folmer

     
  6. #GHOSTPARTY

    Valence is still our main project, but ghosts want to party and who are we to deny them that?

     

  7. Valence

    Valence is our next game. I wrote a big thing here and then lost it somehow so I’m going to move pretty quickly here. In a nutshell, Valence is a heavily stylized platformer mixed with The Binding Of Isaac. You’re probably thinking “‘heavily stylized?’ Ugh another black and white platformer” but it would be difficult to be more wrong. Just take a look at some of these teasers and decide for yourself. 

    First up is Brigitte Helm, the protagonist of the game. She is a self-described “repair woman”, but by “repair” she really means “robot murderer extraordinaire.”

                                  image

    "But..but Andrew! That picture is still in black and white!" Wow okay there buddy calm down. You want to see some color huh? Fine, but it’s going to try and kill you. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. 

                                  image

    There aren’t words to describe how hard Folmer went on this next one, so I will just let the image do all the talking. 

                                  image

     

  8. Folmer’s List of Games That Are A Thing 2012

    Game That Made Me Sit Back and Take Notes Like Back When I Was a Kid: Fez

    Fez

    Like many people, I was following the Fez hype / development hell / Phil Fish image macros. From day one I was excited about the aesthetics and the fact that there were no enemies in the game, according to Fish. But when it finally did come out, I assumed that I knew everything about the game already. The setting, the characters, the mechanics- everything was clear. Until I actually started playing the game and quickly found myself having to break out pen and paper to try and make sense of it all. I’m pretty sure I haven’t done that since the NES days.  


    Game That I Probably Wrecked Your High Score In Because I Am Really Really Good At It: /ESCAPE\ (iOS)

    /ESCAPE\" width=

    Incredible Ape’s /ESCAPE\ was originally a flash game, and I think it won a Ludum Dare at some point. I played the flash version quite a bit, and I always thought it would make for a great iOS title. And then it became one! And I was right! It came out early this year but it’s still my go to game. 

    Game That I Wanted To Suck Less Because It Looked So Fresh: Pid 

    Pid

    Pid looks awesome. It looks like what Venus Patrol keeps yelling they wished that games looked like. Pid’s aesthetics are soft and whimsical and fit the oddball story perfectly. These are all good things to say about a video game. Sadly, the gameplay is rather forgettable, and above all else the game just makes me angry that it didn’t do more with itself.

    Game That Is Quite Pleasant To Get Angry As Hell At: Stealth Bastard Deluxe 

    Stealth Bastard Deluxe

    Stealth Bastard came out as a free game last year (I think), and it was hella impressive how much love was poured into it. The idea of taking stealth games and addressing the inherent slowness that comes with them was really dang clever. When Stealth Bastard Deluxe came out I was a little worried that it was going to be a soulless money-grab, but as it turns out the game really deserves the Deluxe. 

    Game(s) That Got It Like Dat: Paul Greasley’s LD Entries

    Soul Jar


    Pixel art is pretty common in indie games, and there’s a lot of great stuff out there. But honestly? There are only 2 people doing something different with it: Superbrothers and Paul Greasley (aka FarmerGnome). 

    Happy Little Murder Friends

    And the man is a hard worker! His output in 2012 includes the aforementioned LD games Soul Jar and Happy Little Murder Friends, as well as playable alphas of RAMBROS, Under The Ocean, and Fistful of Gun. Hats off to you dude.

    Game That We Can Finally Replace Portal With As An Example Of Storytelling In Games: Papa Y Yo  

    Papa Y Yo

    Plots: When movies get it right, they’re good. When games get it right, they’re amazing. The story, the setting, and the way the mechanics tie into both make Papa Y Yo a thing of beauty. We desperately need more games like this. 

    Game That Should Make You Cry: Dys4ia

    Dys4ia

    Anna Antropy knows what she’s doing. Dys4ia takes basic video game rules and utilizes them to great effect to not only tell a real story but also to share real feelings. But despite being rooted firmly in video game aesthetics and metaphors, it still manages to effortlessly touch people who consider themselves non-gamers. Dys4ia is one of the best examples of game design I’ve ever seen.

    Alright, that’s it for me! Thanks for reading, thanks for all the support everyone has shown Sets and Settings in 2012, and expect us to shed some light on our upcoming project very soon!

    Andrew’s list will show up sometime before the new year. 

    -Folmer

     

  9.                            logo time YEA

    Last weekend we released Baburu, a game about grappling hooks and getting money. Baburu was made in 3 days and started as a thing Andrew was messing around with because Andrew is incapable of NOT making games at all times. 

    At first it was a let’s-get-this-done-in-a-couple-of-hours type deal, we planned to use super-minimalist pixel art for it:

     

    Neat, but it didn’t do the concept justice (also, the tiles looked reaaaaally boring). Our focus quickly turned to polish, or “juice” as the buzzword seems to be these days. We discussed where to take the game and after I tried my hand at a new art style, we decided that what it needed was the feeling of it being bubbly— hence the game being called Baburu.  

                                                     BABURU YAAAAY! Early player sprite design

    Andrew tackled the bubbly challenge by adding a ton of really cool details in the code, things like making the player bounce when hitting a wall and on-screen elements that would grow in when entering a room. I did my part by making everything round. 

    a screenshot kewl

    In the end, we’re really happy with how it came out, and while it’s still an exercise in limited design / rapid development, the amount of polish and details we got into it really makes it shine.

    It’s up on Newgrounds with leaderboards so go and show off!

      

    - Folmer

     
  10. Soon. Tomorrow? Soon.