Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Good News From The Distant Land of Canada

I'm happy to announce that a concept I developed with my old friend Ron Gilbert has been picked up by Hothead Games. DeathSpank: Episode One: Orphans of Justice will be winging your way via the Intertubes in the not-too-distant future.

DeathSpank started as a joke character on our sporadic Flash cartoon on Ron's Grumpy Gamer site, but the big lug assumed a life of his own. Before too long he had a world, supporting characters and our insane belief that the game had to be made. This had to be more than a wiggly cartoon. It had to be a game.

Before I rejoined the ranks of the respectably employed last year, Ron and I spent a couple years developing and pitching this game. We loved everything about the concept, but it was nigh-impossible to convince publishers to back something that wasn't A. The Be All, End All Blockbuster, B. A Sequel To The Be All, End All, Blockbuster or C. Something Based On A Famous Crappy Movie. Anyway, Ron continued to fight the good fight and met up with a great publishing team. I'm delighted that something I co-created is going to see the light of day.

One question that might remain is whether I will be involved in the day-to-day work on DeathSpank. I wish that were possible, but I've been working on yet another cool game in the meantime (as yet unannounced) with Gas Powered Games. I'll be looking in on DeathSpank, though and pitching in where I can.

It's a feast or famine situation. Sometimes the game industry spanks you. Sometimes you spank back. Here's to Ron raising his mighty designer hand to paddle the bum of mediocrity.

Go DeathSpank!!!



simo said...

luv U big respect! omg can't wait!!

AMRAAM said...

A Ron Gilbert and Clayton Kauzlaric collaboration - I am looking forward to learning more about this game. I'm sure I'll buy it, but it looks a little like I might actually keep it for myself instead of giving it to my kids.

yaz0r said...

Glad to see that project is finaly signed.
I hope that even if you're not directly involved, you'll have occations to give your inputs on the game.

Lenar said...

I hope that you could be somewhat involved in the design of Deathspank. And it would also be cool some kind of Vince cameo in the game. (Unless Microsoft sues you to oblivion or beheading for intellectual property theft or something :D )

Greetings from Spain.

Clayton Kauzlaric said...

Ron and I kicked the story and design back and forth for enough years that it will still bear the mark of my fearsome thumb print. I will definitely remain involved, though I am pretty busy with my job at GPG.

A Vince cameo would be a hoot, but you are correct. Vince is in similar straits as Monkey Island when it comes to IP ownership. Guest appearances aren't terribly likely.

Peter said...

I look away for a bit, and suddenly your blog is full of updates! Cool...!

I don't know how I missed this Deathspank announcement a week ago, but it must be flattering that something you concepted finally got off the ground, even if you won't be able to work on it much personally since Ron snuck it over the border to Canada in the dead of night.

It must be great to have an extranational nemesis now, though...

Clayton Kauzlaric said...

Yes. Soon we will duel with giant lasers from our respective hollowed out volcanoes.

Mataeus said...

Great :D
It's nice to know that at least one publishing firm out there that will take a chance on doing something new... I remember the 80's, when people could release pretty much anything they want... It's more of a business now I suppose.

Crumbs said...

Speaking of said wiggly animations, how do you do them? I'm stumped, I've been trying to do them for ages but I can't. Help much appreciated.


Crumbs said...


(For all who're curious, just head on here:

Clayton Kauzlaric said...

You're very welcome. I'm sure my oh-so comprehensive tutorial will open up new horizons to everyone with the desire to animate badly in the squiggly style.

Anonymous said...

Im wondering when will u keeping writing the TA-ntient? I just love that...

dave said...

If these are the reasons publishers aren't picking up VV2:

A. The Be All, End All Blockbuster,
B. A Sequel To The Be All, End All, Blockbuster or
C. Something Based On A Famous Crappy Movie.

...then why not go with C and start making crappy movies first. Then make a game based on the movie.

Producers seem to be jumping on completely unimaginative CGI films lately. Surely, a unique and quirky one would go over well with them... well... you could give it a shot anyway.

Looking forward to VV the movie

All the best

Clayton Kauzlaric said...

Dave - Great idea. I was thinking something more along the lines of Blocky McSquare & His Adventures In Flat Shaded Land. That way I could cut out the middle man and make the film myself on a second hand Amiga.

It just... might... work.

Anonymous (presumably of the Long Island Anonymouses) - I really will get back to my TA saga soon. I'm still tracking down some old pictures of E3 from 1997. They might have been inscribed on clay tablets.

CaesarZX said...

Hi CK,
I am THE Anonymous, the chinese guy who translated your TA-intient to Chinese and posted on his own blog.
im so glad to hear that you r getting back to the project :-)

DaveH said...

Clayton... I'm on your tail. Hit me up. We need to talk GPG.