Gamasutra is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Gamesspacer
View All     RSS
September 28, 2020
arrowPress Releases

If you enjoy reading this site, you might also want to check out these UBM Tech sites:

Don't be fooled by  Spelunky XBLA 's quiet launch

Don't be fooled by Spelunky XBLA's quiet launch Exclusive

June 29, 2012 | By Mike Rose

It seems like every other week, another indie developer cites Derek Yu's indie hit Spelunky as a huge inspiration on their work.

The tomb-robbing semi-roguelike was first released in 2009 for Windows PC, and sees players journeying deeper and deeper into the ground, as enemies and traps threaten to permanently kill the hero.

2009 was also the year that Yu revealed Spelunky for Xbox Live Arcade was in the works. Now, two and half years later, the veteran indie developer is on the cusp of releasing this beefed up XBLA version to the public.

Despite the hype in the indie community, however, Yu is far from nervous about the public's expectations surrounding the long-awaited release. "Not too worried about that!" he tells us. "If anything, I think the game is a bit under-hyped compared to other indie XBLA titles. But maybe that's just as well -- the original game was released pretty quietly, too!"

With this new version, Yu aimed to expand in two main areas -- adding a multiplayer mode, and adding as many secrets in single player as possible. When it came to pandering to more casual Xbox players, however, Yu says this simply didn't happen.

"If anything, it's deeper," he quips. "However, we took great pains to improve the controls and flow of the game, and give players a little more insight into Spelunky's nature through the tutorial and journal."

spelunky1.jpgThe multiplayer mode is where Yu hopes veteran Spelunky players will join up with newer players and be able to enjoy the game together.

"In my opinion, it's always been the hardcore players that have moved gaming forward and it's their enthusiasm that paves the way for a larger audience," he adds. "My hope is that casual players will see how much fun a tough game can be if it's designed well."

While Derek Yu has been lauded by many as a key player in the indie game world, there's one area in which he probably needs a bit of work -- marketing. Spelunky XBLA was casually announced as launching on July 4 on Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb's blog, with barely any press in recent months.

Says Yu, the team has simply not had a moment to really market the game. "Basically, we've just been working really hard this whole time and haven't had much room to build up the game. Trust me, if I knew how to blow up the mainstream press while working on a game, I'd do it! It's not really in my nature, I guess."

He adds, "Honestly, it may hurt us in the short-term that we didn't hype up Spelunky for months beforehand. But I never expected it would shatter first-week sales records, anyway -- my goal was to create something that people could enjoy years after its release. I feel like we accomplished that, so I'm happy!"

Related Jobs

Remedy Entertainment
Remedy Entertainment — Espoo, Finland

Development Director
Remedy Entertainment
Remedy Entertainment — Espoo, Finland

Senior Development Manager (Xdev Team)
Remedy Entertainment
Remedy Entertainment — Espoo, Finland

Senior Cinematic Scripter
Deep Silver Volition
Deep Silver Volition — Champaign, Illinois, United States

Senior Engine Programmer

Loading Comments

loader image