Jul 18th 2017 by twelvegage96 • 60 Questions • 6179 Points
Proof that its me (and that ive been crunching on a new game for the past few months) : https://i.redd.it/mefhxu6ba19z.jpg
My latest game "The End is Nigh" released on Steam yesterday, and i'm here to allow you to pick away at what little sanity i have left!
so feel free to ASK ME ANYTHING!
ps: co-creator and programmer Tyler Glaiel (Glaiel-Gamer) will also be hanging out in the comments!
Aw man, the only discount card I have on my keychain is a Sports Authority scanner.
Anyway, was there any evidence that the company was headed down that you noticed from your own store?
Hi Ed, I love your games! Two questions. It seems like the majority of your games are platformers, from more traditional ones recently like The End is Nigh and SMB, to more physics-based ones earlier in your career like Aether and Gish.
Is there something about platformers that draws you to develop those types of games often? It seems like you don't have any difficulty coming up with ideas to keep platformers fresh despite it being a pretty old genre.
Issac is a big step outside this pattern, does it interest you to take this even further and develop more games in other unfamiliar genres, like maybe a Super McMillen RPG?
Our own store actually did quite well. We had consistently improving numbers and were managed pretty good on a small level. Our building's lease was super cheap and we were the only decent sporting goods store in an area that included around 7 high schools. Not to toot my own horn but we had pretty good sales. It was every other store in the company that sucked. We did nothing wrong ;)
the short answer is platformers are easy to make, so its more fun and quick for me to write around and design than something more long winded like an RPG or shooter.
yes,after isaac i became pretty obsessed with randomly generated games. mewgenics, 0urobos, and fingered were all randomly generated. RNG based games are diffcult to design around because they require so much content to be good.
i hope to eventually pick up mewgenics againwith tyler and dive into RNG hell once more.
When I went in towards the end it seemed like none of the employees gave a fuck which was awesome haha. I got a brand new Taylor made sand wedge and hat that had no price tags on them for like $11 because the kid at the register just scanned two $5 items near the register and said "what are they gonna do fire me?" Guy was my hero.
hey! i love your games! do you ver feel like you've designed something in any of your games that was unfair/poorly thought out that you regret implementing? anything specific come to mind?
Yeah if you were nice to us we basically would do crap like that. Assholes got no leeway though.
yes, i think tboi was poorly thought out, but you guys like it that way so ill leave it alone.
You don't happen to have any spare miniature tent replicas lying around, do you?
Hey Ed, I'm a big fan of your work, especially Super Meat Boy :D
What exactly is your relation with Super Meat Boy Forever? I'm starting to see teasers from Tommy Refenes, the SMB Twitter, SGDQ ads, etc... but you don't seem to ever mention it. Are you still working on that game?
tommy and i are working independently
When the bankruptcy was announced, did the employees at your store start taking "liberties" with the sales items?
I.e. 5 finger discounts?
Hey Ed, dumb question time. Favorite flavor of ice cream?
Thanks for the new game, I'm currently tearing my fingers off in the future
Not that I know of. There was a rather large theft scandal a few months before the bankruptcy, but that wasn't related.
However, there was a certain room in the back that gathered a lot of items that were saved until discount prices reached 90-95% off.......
it would have to be chocolate peanut butter! im also a big fan of peach and black cherry ice cream as well!
but i cant eat too much or i get the "mad shits"
How many employees hung on until the end and how many bolted right away for other jobs? I imagine it was a morale killer when the announcement was made?
What's your worst story from your years as animal control?
It was probably a split down the middle between the two options. A lot of us were actually college students, so hanging on to the end and then going back to school wasn't a bad option. The managers were also promised severance so they stayed on. Until they found out how little it was going to be. After that, they immediately looked for new jobs and the manager positions basically became a revolving door.
almost got mauled by a 120lb german shepherd named brutis that was let loose purposefully by a neighbor in an attempt to frame the owners knowing he would attack people
I imagine only desperate applicants would accept a manager job that already has an expiration date in a few months.
Hey Ed - What are the chances of you making more titles based on your older flash games? I'm very excited for Øuroboros!
We just promoted from within. There was a line of seniority and you just moved up the ladder every time someone quit. I was close to store manager by the end. I honestly just wanted the job for a day just to put it on my resume
aether is probably the #1 game id like to make a sequel for. Tyler and i actually made a prototype for it a few years back so its def on the table as a possibility for the future.
0uroboros will be put on hold for a bit but im sure we'll get back to it
Hey Ed! I got The Binding of Isaac for free one month long ago on PSN, and since then I've been a huge fan of the games you've made a lot. It's clear The Legend of Zelda has been a huge inspiration for your work, but are there any other titles or creators of games that influenced your creations?
obviously most of myamotos games and his approach to design was super inspirational, esp when pulling from his personal experiences. id say currently jon blow and derek yu are pretty big influence on my work. i like the way think.
Why did SA never have anything? I remember going into those stores well before the bankruptcy and they were always poorly stocked with huge gaps everywhere. Multiple locations, same experience.
Favourite game OST?
At least in my store the experience was that they didn't ship us what we needed. We became overstocked on a few things while other things we didn't have at all. We sold A LOT of football gear, but never had anything in the popular sizes. We tried to make due as best as we could, but I'm not sure they had any system in their shopping and stocking methods.
for games my favorite soundtracks are katamari damacy, hotline miami, and mewgenics.
Hey Ed,what will you do when someone speedruns The End Is Nigh?
do you think your land kayaking and other antics like 8' dunking contests, butt darts, etc. led to the demise of Sports Authority?
I know you've got a lot on your plate, but are you considering a sequel to Rebirth?
I accept full responsibility for the demise of Sports Authority. Although if my dream of seeing land kayaking in the olympics is realized, I will give Sports Authority an honorary advertising spot.
no doubt someday ill do a sequel to isaac, i have a lot of ideas that would require a whole new game but not now!
Least favorite thing about working there other than that it went out of business?
How did you managed to make a game as big as the end is nigh in only a year?
Customers that expected to be treated like royalty. If you were nice and pleasant I loved helping you with whatever you needed and making sure you got the best deals possible. If you walked in, all entitled and such, and demanded sale prices and items that we didn't have in stock, that's when you got on my bad side.
a lot less than a year! roughly 7 months. the short answer is we cut a lot of corners. aesthetically the style of the game made it easy for me to make a variety of visuals for the game with little effort and technically the engine we were using for 0uroboros was already in place and being used.
also this is the first time where i didnt design all the levels, tyler designed roughly a quarter of the levels (the harder ones)
What's your main opinion as to why Sports Authority went bankrupt?
is switch version of afterbirth+ going to get a update anytime soon?
They refused to catch up with the times. Sporting goods is an increasingly online business, (especially shoes and clothing), and the company failed to realize that. Their website was trash, and they banked on brick and mortar stores maintaining a strong presence. Spending millions of dollars on naming rights to Bronco stadium was also a poor decision.
i believe the switch version will get an update once we have a specific booster pack released. but im not completely in control of this stuff.
Hey Edmund i love you, what genres of music you like?
Not that I know of. I'm pretty sure those guys only went in with their girlfriends to help them pick out outfits.... right?!?!
i like all good music, but have a hard time getting into rap, country,and general r&b
Hey Edmund. Do you love us as much as we love you?
What was the worst/rudest customer you've ever served (for lack of a better word)?
Why have you decided to compete against yourself in the next great indie platformer(I know they are different partners)?
Too many to count.
The rudest was probably the woman that took a giant pile of clothes into the dressing room, peed on them, then left the soggy mess on the floor for us to clean up.
When our store announced the closing I had a few customers that ended up screaming at me over conflicts in prices. One woman in particular demanded that our $150 pitching machine be marked down to $10 because that was the shelf that she found it on. And she also wanted the 20% off on top of that. When I politely told her that in the mess that was bankruptcy it was impossible to keep everything organized and on correct shelves, she did her best to go to my superiors and get me fired.
i cant stop making platformers. ive made 9 of them over the past 14 years, im slowing down but i dont see myself stopping. id like to think im getting better(go check out my first platformer Clubby The Seal)
Shit, is this what retail's gonna be like? I'm only 15 and getting a job somewhere soon. I'm fucked
I've been a fan of yours since Carrious Welting (sic) on Newgrounds. Where did you get the inspiration for that iconic style?
Yeah retail and food will suck for you. But it's something that I honestly and truly believe every person should work for at least a year of their life. If not more. But if you find somewhere with some good coworkers you can usually survive.
i was an animal control officer and had to deal with dead and decaying animals a lot, it was very inspirational
How did the people/shopping approach change during that time? I know I hadn't been to the store in many years but dropped by to see if there were any great deals.
What mistake stands out to you the most from your latest project that you will try to avoid as best as possible in any future projects?
That's practically what everyone else did. We got a lot more foot traffic simply because of the massive signs, but people didn't realize that for the first month or so, deals weren't all that great. Also some people bought WAY more than they needed simply because things were 15% off. The people themselves also became more extreme on both sides of the spectrum. The nice ones treated us even better and with more sympathy because we were losing our jobs, while the raunchy ones made sure we knew that they didn't care. They just wanted to save a few bucks.
i cant say yet what mistakes ive made with the end
but i can say the biggest mistake in the past, that ive made repeatedly would be announcing a new project im excited about much too early
Hey Ed, I've enjoyed literally all your games tremendously! TEIN is a masterpiece so far!
Do you enjoy speed-running your own games? Do you have a current PB for how fast you can beat TEIN?
I am currently employed at Walmart! Enough content there for another AMA..... but I am also going to school full time as well. Hoping that gets me a better job.
no, im not that good at video games but i like watching
In the absence of your former employer, who now holds the title of being the authority on sports?
how did you decide on the name Peach for your daughter?
my wife liked the name peach and i liked the name pj, so we met in the middle and named her Peach Jubilee. technically on paper her name is PJ so if she ends up hating the name she has a lot of options
What a coincidence! Another fellow Idahoan. I was surprised when I opened this, because I too worked at Sports Authority at this exact location back in 2009. Loved working there honestly. You know something funny? I saw Greg at a baseball game about 1 month before the bankruptcy was announced and I had heard that SA was having problems so I asked him if he was worried. He told me absolutely not and that his job was safe and that SA location was the top grossing in the region and then one month later and bam! Bankruptcy!
I hated selling the warranty plans there, absolute garbage, and think that and the managers at stores is why they went out of business. Idk about now but when I worked there, there were 4 managers plus head store manager, when realistically they would be fine with 3.
Becca is the only other person in the picture besides Greg that was there when I worked there. The rest are all new faces. Good luck to your future employment and school.
Hi Ed! First of All, I've been playing The End if Nigh a few hours now and I'm really enjoying it. So here's my question: Of all the game you created, which one is your favorite and why? (I know it's difficult to pick just one)
isaac, honestly its my favorite because my wife and friends like it so much. so that feels like a success to me and makes me happy.
Who were some of the worst people you had to work with after the bankruptcy was announced?
What has been your biggest inasparation for making games ? and how do you manage discipline?
He was the area supervisor from the liquidation company. And boy oh boy was he a character.
He was hell bent on making sure the store was cleaned out of EVERYTHING. He would go on dumpster rampages where he would just start throwing things away if he didn't think we needed them. And if we did "need" them he would put a price tag on them and put them on the floor. If I left anything unattended for more than 30 seconds I would know it would end up in the dumpster or on a shelf marked for sale. Like my water jug. Or my jacket. Or my radio.
life has always been my biggest inspiration when making games, all of the themes and stories in my work come from something personal ive experienced, especially the bad stuff.
i dont have much discipline... i have a hard time not working and i work pretty obsessively. its been an issue for ages and its hard to hold together a functional family when im constantly working/thinking about what im working on and what im working on next.
im currently trying to learn how to be ok with not constantly being creative
Cash, under the table into Jeff's pocket? Or was he a company man till the end?
Hey Edmund, just wanted to say thanks for everything, your appearance on indie game the movie inspired me to start my own project. The passion you have for gamedev and art is inspirational. Thanks so much.
I would like to ask how do you come up with your ideas?
Do you like how the game industry is at the moment or is there anything you would like to see happening?
i base my ideas on real life experiences.
i would like to see the industry or people in the industry express themselves more with their chosen artistic medium instead of constantly talking about it. i feel like it would be more impactful, passionate and moving if people used their work to express their feelings
Do you think of yourself as a game developer or do you feel like you're an artist and designer that sometimes makes video games?
They bought a few specific locations to take over and then bought our loyalty program information so they could send emails to our emailing list.
i definitely think of myself as an artist that sometimes makes video games, i think this is the one thing that sets me apart from a majority of other people in the industry
Do you ever wonder if you could have singlehandedly saved the company if you were a better salesperson?
I noticed you tagged the Indie Game the Movie crew on Twitter earlier this week, could we expect an Indie Game the Movie sequel?
Sometimes I wonder if I spent more time selling jock straps and shoe deodorizers, could I have risen all the way to CEO and put this company on a different path? I will never know. But maybe if I hadn't spent so many hours playing butt ball in the back room and trying out our new shoes........ maybe.
i have no idea what they have planned, but theyre filming me right now. so far 20 hours of footage of tyler eating
Hey Ed, which of your games do you personally find the most fun to play?
Butt ball. Wall ball. I'm not sure what anybody else calls it. I thought everybody has played it at least once through their elementary and middle school careers.
I had no idea SA went out of business. I went there a lot but they were always kind of expensive.
Is Wal-Mart better or worse for you as an employee?
Would you ever make a real time strategy game? If so, how would you make it stand out?
It's a wash. Management and coworkers are worse, but the customers and pay are better.
i have a design for an rts that i think is super interesting, i cant say why for obvious reasons but id make it stand out with poop and dead things
What's the best way to get a discount at a sporting goods store that might not be immediately obvious? Were there any behind the scenes rules that I could implement and save some hard earned cash?
Hey! BoI is one of my favorite games of all time and since it's partially influenced by the Zelda series, I was wondering what other (if any) game series that you grew up playing could be "punched up" with some of that McMillen Special Sauce™?
Thank you so much for everything that you've contributed to the world, my brother and I have bonded time and again over BoI and it's all thanks to you.
I'm not sure how other stores work so I can give you what advice I have. A lot of sporting magazines had coupons for our store that stacked on top of other coupons that we would email out, so look for stuff like that. Also, clearance and outlet prices, especially online, are totally worth it. Especially with shoes where a one year model difference doesn't make too much of a difference in ability. You can get a shoe for $70 that is basically the same shoe they are selling for $150. (Shoes are one thing I recommend going high end on) And asking the cashier or sales associate if there are any deals going on right now is always good. We would sometimes have 20% off coupons taped to the register because they were emailed out that day. So if you aren't part of the email list, but just ask someone you can usually get the discount.
ive thought about attempting a mega man, maybe one day
I too worked at TSA! got fired though long before the company went bankrupt due to those damn rewards cards. We were actually threatened with our jobs if not enough accounts were made. Was that the case in your store? What was your favorite song to hear?
Hey Edmund been a fan since 2001 when I found dead baby dress up on newgrounds. And just wanted to say thanks for the years of enjoyment. And fuck you for pre-buff Lost.
Given how long you've made games and the variety of them, What is a genre of game you would like to make but haven't yet?
Oh jeez we were never threatened with our jobs. Unless you were a cashier. You needed at least 25% to survive as a cashier. And to get promoted to senior sales you needed 40%. So I got 40%, got promoted, and then my numbers dive bombed again.
ESPN radio on Sundays. Sports Authority radio was the worst thing in the world.
RTS, i have a few loose designs for some. its all about having the time to do it
Why were your going out of business sales so lame? I went into a Sports Authority while they were trying to liquidate inventory and seriously the best they could do was like 10%-20% off already inflated prices. Did they ever actually discount stuff enough to get it sold?
Is Afterbirth coming to Vita for real?
That was a common complaint. The liquidation company's goal was to make back the money they used to buy Sports Authority. I think they bought all the assets for 101% of their worth. So they needed to make that back. So they started off with really crappy discounts. But yes, in the end, they got all the way down to 95% off. By then nothing was left. At least in the two stores I was working at.
i dont know :(
If you could have renamed Sports Authority, what would you have named it instead?
Hey Edmund, is The end is Nigh a true story in some way?
the end is nigh is based on my experience making video games so its true in a very abstract way
What happens to all the merchandise once the store is closed?
How do you manage to balance your work as a game developer and your personal life? Also, I really love your games!
It was all gone, either shipped to stores that lasted a bit longer (in the case of one store I relocated to for two weeks to help them close a little earlier) or in the case of my main store we simply sold every piece of merchandise.
i dont. this is an issue, i hope i get better.
Hey Edmund! Wanted to say that you've been a huge inspiration to me and that it's been a pleasure playing your fantastic games through my teen years and into adulthood. I think I've come a long way since reading the design breakdown included in the SMB Ultra Rare edition when I was 13-or-so, but I'm sure I'd be a drastically different person if not for reading that all those years ago. Media analysis and design are my greatest passions, and I think I might owe at least part of that to you. Thanks for directing me to what I love most. I hope one day I can inspire people half as much as you've inspired me.
Anyway here's my question: Who were/are your inspirations as an artist?
And a question from my friend who doesn't have internet right now: Now that there's nothing quite like Newgrounds in its prime and the competition to get your ideas noticed on the internet has gotten so much tougher, do you have any advice for a creative person trying to make connections with other creative people of different skillsets? She asked me to add that you're a role model to her and that you make her want to pursue her artistic dreams, "or whatever."
If you can find a female Sports Authority. It's a recessive gene.
growing up the things that inspired me most were stuff like garbage pail kids, horror movies, DnD, mtg,zines,weirdo underground comics , community television and just general artistic weirdos.
i wish i knew but id like to believe there are communities out there if you just put in the work finding them, befriending people and getting your work out there.
Hi, Ed! Huge fan of your work!
It always seems like you have a ton of separate projects at once. I mean, even right now there's End of Nigh which you've only just finished, Legend of Bumbo, Ouroboros, and probably more I'm forgetting. What's it like balancing so many projects at once and how do you handle it?
Also if you had the opportunity to eat the pillsbury doughboy, would you?
i tend to have a lot of projects going at once because theres something inspiring about the chaos, its sometimes helpful for me to be thnking about a range of things at once to stay focused and motivated.
Danielle(wife) here, its terrible. send help.
I first learned of you from the documentary Indie Games when it debuted on Netflix some years ago. I strongly admire your passion for your art and the human experience.
My question: Do you feel like you were accurately and fairly portrayed in the film?
yes, but they made me sound more sane than i am, also probably helped that other people said crazier things :)
When can we expect afterbirth+ for Xbox one and will boosters be available? I'd pay for a quarterly booster pack on Xbox. Love playing Isaac and always want more
i have no clue https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DElSEzpVYAAIUoe.jpg
Hey Ed, what did you use to make the art and animations in The End Is Nigh and how long did it take you?
i used flash, i still use flash. it took me about 6 months to do all the art for the game, part timeish.
this game was a lot less graphics intensive for me than my other games, due to the flat shaded style. the great majority of time was spent making levels.
As someone not entirely in the loop it seemed like The End Is Nigh came out of nowhere. When did work start on the game and how much of your time have you been spending on it recently? Thanks for all your work btw, you've made so many of my favourite games!
so we started work in december 2016, but it was mostly using the foundation of 0uroboros. i worked part time to full time since then and tyler has been working on it full time.
it seemingly came out of nowhere because i wasnt positive that we were going to finish it and didnt want to announce another game that could be stuck in limbo so we played it safe and waited until the last minute to announce and attempt to hype this game.
What are some games you like to play/ have been playing in your spare time? I know that you're probably busy alot between the baby and making games, but I'm sure you find some time here and there to play some stuff that isn't yours.
yes! i draft MTG every week with my friends, we play cube. my wife and i also play pokemon go a ton with our friends
we also play a lot of party games on the weekends like times up, telestrations, and a heavily modded version of cards against humanity
Good day, Edmund.
I'm curious to know how it is that you use the "language" of video games to create a narrative that complements gameplay. How do you go about designing gameplay mechanics that can also work as story elements?
this is a difficult one to explain. i attempt to take mechanics that abstractly mirror or complement elements of the games story or theme and run them parallel.
for example, the ends theme is stress and pressure, the feeling that something is going to end soon but never does and questioning if all the effort is worth it. i feel that comes through in the games design, story, and theme
stranger things have happened, but currently no plans.
Hey ed :) Are there any games planned after your bumbo game? (Ps i just wanted to thank you for the binding of isaac you made thousands of hours more enjoyable for me)
i have no games set in stone after bum-bo. BUT id love to take a stab at mewgenics again, maybe aether, or something totally new