The Fully Illustrated Blog

Trenches 2 is back and FREE

March 1, 2013

T2-FREE

Hey everyone,

Some fantastic news landed in my inbox yesterday and it was to let me know that EA has graciously released Trenches 2 from its publishing agreement! Booom! Its finally back in the hands of its loving family, Thunder Game Works!

To celebrate, the game is being run for free for a limited time. I strongly suggest that you go and grab a copy to support the guys over at Thunder as its such an epic game and did I mention its free?

Expect more Trenches news coming over the following weeks and months, its so amazing to see this game back with its owners and out on the AppStore again!

Mike.

 

 

Fully Illustrated’s Big Announcement…

July 30, 2012

 

Well, a few weeks ago via Twitter, I declared that I had some big news to announce, and now I can finally spill the proverbial beans!

As all of you will know, games are my single biggest passion and have been for as long as I can remember.  I live them, I love them and I’ve always wanted to make them!  Now, after many years of working with some of the worlds greatest Indie’s, they’ve finally rubbed off on me and I’m diving in to join them!  That’s right; I’m officially working on my very own game as a true Indie developer!

So how does that work?

In conjunction with the development of the amazing new iOS Game Dock, Fully Illustrated has commissioned Cascadia Games to be the programming powerhouse that brings my dream game to life!  As part of the Game Dock’s Kickstarter campaign, their highest funding option ($10,000) included the glorious perk of getting your game made for the Game Dock! Now, as Cascadia are a client of mine, I had the chance to talk to Chris Jorgensen (founder) directly about exactly what was possible.  It turned out that my dream game, the game that has been toiling in my creative mind for decades was going to be achievable! This was just too good to be true!  Couple this with the fact that my game is going to be playable with an actual physical joypad rather than ‘just’ touch controls makes all this simply perfect.

Fully Illustrated has been squirreling away funds for years in the hope of getting enough cash together to fund a kick ass developer to realise my dream.  So when all this came together, and was within my small budget, I was little short of teary eyed.  Actually I was running around like a headless chicken for about 5 days out of pure uncontrollable excitement.

So what’s the game? Can you tell us more?

In short, I’m not saying too much right now, but that’s only to allow me chance to copyright and trademark everything first. I’m going to be launching a dev blog to cover this game from sketch through to release, so you can expect a very candid and open display of the development throughout.  I want this to project to be quite a social experience, so you can expect no stone to be left un-turned.  I’ll even be covering the costs and sales figures once launched (if there are any ;)

As an indication of what to expect though, I’m going to say this. This game is going to be the realisation of a dream, so you can rest assured that this is going to get every last drop of my creative ability and passion. I will make this my greatest work to date, that I can promise.

As far as what I can give away about the game, there are a few things I’ll say now. The game is going to be set in Britain, in a time way before the Roman’s invaded and will be mixed in with a touch of fantasy and old British folklore.  I want this game to have a very gritty and old English feel to it, something that I’ve never seen in any other game. Imagine the visual intensity of open misty moorlands, driving rain, blistering cold and sprawling eerie forests. This country is stooped in myth and magic that spans thousands of years, and I want to grasp the essence of that!

What about the gameplay mechanic?

I don’t want to give this away right now, but if you look at the rough concept image at the top, I’m guessing you can work out the basis pretty easily ;) It’s going to be retro, very retro indeed.

When’s it coming? How will it affect your normal work?

Dates wise, I’m working on it right now in my spare time, and have dedicated November 2012 – January -2013 to work on it full time. Its got a very loose release date of March 2013. So besides that couple of month window, I’ll be taking work on as normal :)

Ok, that’s a fair old amount of babble there; I’ll draw this to a close.

Watch this space over the coming months when I announce more information and launch the dev blog. I hope you’ll all wish me luck as I step forth into realising my lifelong dream…its as scary as it is exciting!

Mike.

 

 

Gibs n Glory – Free iOS Wallpapers!

June 15, 2012

Hey Everyone!

Its been a while since my last post but this time I come bearing goodies :)

With the upcoming released of Gibs n Glory for iOS, I wanted to pass out some free Retina wallpapers for both iPhone and iPad! The game is due out on June 28th and is my latest collaboration with Thunder Game Works.  My involvement with this game hasn’t been quite as deep as with Trenches 2 due to my schedule, but the concept art, main character art, branding, UI and some level elements are courtesy of yours truly.  Keep your eyes open for the release on the Thunder site www.thundergameworks.com and the subsequent feature on here :)

Enjoy!

Mike.

 

Trenches 2 iPad & iPhone Wallpapers

December 13, 2011

Hey Everyone,

With the 15th of December only days away, I thought I’d throw out a quick freebie for any Trenches fans eagerly awaiting the Friday launch.  I’ve turned the massive poster art into dedicated iPhone and iPad wallpapers! So you can adorn your iDevice with some rich WW1 artwork to get in the mood :)

Enjoy!

Trenches 2 Previewed on Destructoid!

December 2, 2011

Hey Everyone,

Trenches 2 was previewed on Destructoid last night, so I thought I fire the link up…

While I’m at it, here are some others too…

Only 13 days to go…its almost here :)

Trenches 2 delayed until December 15th

November 30, 2011

Hey Everyone,

It looks like Trenches 2 has had a slight delay and wont be released until the 15th of December now.  Sorry guys.  To partially make up for it, here’s a sneak peak of the British and German tanks :) I’ve also included an image showing how the main two soldiers have evolved from Trenches 1 to Trenches 2. As I hope you’ll agree, they’ve come on quite a bit :)

Roll on December 15th!

The gargantuan game I’ve been working on is announced!

November 21, 2011

 

Hey Everyone,

Well, I’ve been tweeting about this project for about 8 months now, possibly even longer and its now been announced! The worldwide AppStore smash hit Trenches now has a sequel!!!! Trenches 2 will be hitting the AppStore on December 1st and is being published by none other than EA!

I’ve been working on this on and off for the best part of a year and let me tell you, it’s probably the biggest war/action/strategy game on the iPhone…by a LONG stretch, it’s MASSIVE! I’ve been drawing, painting, airbrushing, vectorising and designing for this puppy for soooooooo long and every second has been insanely awesome!

First up I want to cover what has to be my biggest creative accomplishment in my entire 12 years in the industry, the HUGE A1 promo poster that I created recently.

I was blessed with a 2 week budget to create this poster and was basically given something that as an artist you almost never get…the right budget!  As I’d been given such a generous project (as part of the much larger project) I wanted to make this my show piece, the one piece of art that would allow me to take my next step up and genuinely improve my abilities. Needless to say, I spent a significant amount of time sketching and ran through an entire sketch pad putting this together!  Once the sketch was roughed out, reviewed, amended and put into its final state, I was VERY, VERY excited!

My goal was to create a cartoon image in my personal style that reflected the stunning Udon/Capcom character collages that adorn the stunning Udon comics and posters, and while I know I’m no Alvin Lee, I was determined to make this MY take on such a composition.  I started with the star of the show, the German soldier and wanted to create a story around him that portrayed the game.  The overall vision was to tell the story of the Germans out weighing, out gunning and standing terrifyingly tall over the allied forces of WW1. Trenches 2 now has multiple nationalities, so I had to include each of these within the poster, each one displaying his own very distinct character.  All very tongue and cheek too which made it even more fun :)

With the sketch completed it was time to get into the colour rendering…this was going to be fuuuuuuuuuuun!

As I had the time to do so, I had chance to lay down some colour schemes before getting started and after a few iterations I settled on the warm glow of a fiery, war torn battlefield.  This just seemed fitting, and all the browns, oranges and yellows just made for a really indulgent palette that soothed my eyes :)

The scene just seemed to explode to life as each drop of colour adorned the screen, it was a spectacularly rewarding illustration to be working on and I simply couldn’t wait to move onto the next bit as the current part was completed.  My mind was so focused on the final image that I was almost dreaming about this poster whenever I was away from it.  And without further ado, here it is…

One of the other elements that made this so exciting was the final scale of the image ( A1), so my detail level had to be about a gazillion times higher than my usual ‘on-screen’ work and boy oh boy did that make for some memory challenges…

This puppy rolled in at a whopping 1.5gb as a PSD (I like my layers ;) and was quickly becoming a beast to deal with. Even with 8 cores and more RAM than you can imagine, this sucka was still loading after I’d finished making my morning espresso!

Aaaaaaaaanyway, I’m babbling.

I hope you enjoy looking at this as much as I enjoyed making it!

Oh, and here’s a couple of cheeky screenies of Trenches 2 to whet your appetite…

…now I’ll save my rambling on these until my next post :)

Lastly, and VERY importantly, I want to say a MMMMMMMMMMASSIVE thanks to Thunder Game Works for inviting me to be their lead artist once again.

Mike.

 

 

 

Stenches is Game of the Week!!!

November 12, 2010

Hey Everyone,

Yesterday’s Stenches launch was little short of mindblowingly epic! Not only did we get reviewed as TUAW’s Daily App, but we also got a killer review from Touch Arcade & Slide to Play…but that’s just the tip of the iceberg…we also got the AMAZING accolade of Apples (US) ‘iPhone Game of the Week‘! OH MY GOD!

Thanks to everyone out there that is saying amazing things about Stenches you are all so, so awesome!

Thank you world!

Mike.

Stenches – Artwork Preview!

October 17, 2010

Hey Everyone,

One of the recent iPhone games I’ve been busy on, is the sub-story follow up to the worldwide AppStore hit, Trenches,  attractivly entitled, Stenches!

After the phenominal sucess of Trenches and the huge expression of love from the players regarding secret unlock-able ‘Zombie Horde Mode’, Thunder Game Works decided to create a whole game based around this awesome little mini-game.

So you can imagine my excitement when I was tasked with bringing this vision to life!  I love anything Zombie related, so couldnt wait to get my teeth into this!  New characters, environments, branding, menu’s, everything!  Absolutely awesome fun!!!  Just to give you a preview of what’s to come, I’ve showcased the main zombie characters below, and as you’ll see, there’s quite a mix in this new game :)

The game is crammed with awesome new features and game modes, but I wont babble on about those here (you’ll hear more in the press real soon) and I’ll leave you take a look at the concept sketches.

If you’re a fan of Trenches and/or Zombies, you’ve got to grab a copy of this puppy when it launches as I can honestly say it’s absolutely SUPERB!!

I hope you like them :)

Mike.

General Update, new sites, games and other stuff

May 28, 2010

Hey Everyone!

Wow, things have been ultra quiet on the site recently, sorry about that!  I’ve been buried under some sersiously intense deadlines for some seriously fun projects.  Here’s a few specific updates to let you know what’s been going on…

Websites:
I’ve been working on a whole host of sites recently, all of which are awaiting release and most of which (bizarrely) are MMO related!  I’ve gone from doing almost no MMO related games and sites to working on 5! Crazy and immense fun at the same time!

—————————————————–

Games:


Wii:
I’m back to work on the Wii game that I started over a year ago (which was paused for about 6-8months) so there will be loads more info on that beauty as it becomes public.  I’m bloody loving this project!

Steam & X360:
For the past few weeks I’ve been working (hard…very, very hard) on the menu’s, HUD and general UI for a kick ass new game that’s due out on Steam and X360.  This is one of, if not the most amazing project I’ve had the honour of working on, its been a blast!  Again, more info soon.

iPhone & iPad:
Man, this industry is booming right now and the amount of iPhone related enquiries I’m seeing is mind boggling.  At the moment I’m working on (working on also includes completed and as yet un-released) 4 new iPhone games and 1 iPad game with a mixture of companies, all of which have been great to work on!  Unfortunetly, none of them are under the Joystick Generals as JG is on pause for the next few months until both Chris and I can settle our current crazy schedules.

Web:
Yep, I’m dabbling in some web games at the moment, actually, more specifically Facebook games on the whole, creating the UI for 3 MMO’s.  This is fairly new territory for me and has been amazing to work on.  I cannot wait to get them into the portfolio.

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Email Delays:
I know I post this message about every 2 months, but its back again.  Due to my workload there has been A HUUUUGE backlog on my email replies and I am doing all that I can to get back to everyone, so if your waiting, thanks for being patient, I havent forgotten about you and I WILL be back in touch as soon as I can.

Thanks everyone, watch this space, there is lots to be released :)

Mike.

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