Monday, September 7, 2009


all the pax photos (160 something plus a video of a large man falling off the darksiders horse in like 10 seconds) i took here on photobucket

So yea I stayed at glaiel's apartment to go to pax with him and got sick too. the plane rides home sucked. But the weekend was pretty crazy. Had to walk 2 miles to his place after getting off the bus then stay up really really late every night doing random stuff like working on finishing the demo, fixing bugs, and playing games with he, derek yu (tigsource), and andy hull (storyfort). one night we went to a grill with all the pax10 and indie developers we saw there that day and played pool, too. glaiel and i crushed derek and andy.

the pax 10 booth went really well too, especially at Closure's kiosk. someone was always playing and someone else was always watching which is a huge difference from showing the flash game off at E3, where the big named developers couldn't care less about the indiecade booth (see Example 1: g4 people stopped by to play and hopefully there will be coverage on that in the next few days. we got awesome positive feedback. unfortunately some feedback was too positive and didn't offer anything constructive but it was awesome nonetheless! (thanks to everyone who wrote something!)

we were basically there and at the behemoth booth right next door the entire weekend. not really time to walk around, afraid of missing any sort of media or cameras coming around. glaiel, tom and i walked over to scribblenauts to try to see it and play it a few times but that's about it for me. the sumo sacs were indeed helpful resting tools but i could have used a regular chair at times.

besides all the indie developers i met, i also met a couple people i have known online for awhile: monkokio and thejermz. monkokio actually gave us a ride home the last day and woke up extremely early to give me a ride to the airport this morning which was nice of him.

and I met other newgrounders as well: mexifry, faux, fluffkomix, and morichax (and dan paladin, didn't talk to him that much though as he looked very busy drawing for people)

everyone i met that day was really really cool so no newgrounds drama ensued

it was all just so awesome, i'd say it was better than E3 from the amount that was going on; and the fact that at PAX, people come to play new games, not just watch new trailers and do executive and corporate business.

thanks tom for all the merchandise i bought from the behemoth booth too!

ps. i think writing this thing was way more than i had to do in the first place so i didn't link to anyone's names

pss. fan art to me of my first game ever from derek:

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Closure Character Concept Art

I've been drawing some character art recently for Closure and I was thinking...What if the focused graphics, ground, character, main puzzle objects, etc, stand in too much with the other grayscale graphics? Well, we could just brighten them and make them much brighter. That is one option and I can see it working, but I also played with the idea of maybe trying the old two-tone style on the main graphics and grayscale fogged objects in the background. The two-tone style looks interesting in the fog. More to come though. Hard to see how it will all play out without seeing post-processed graphics all flowing together in-game but I'll test that out a bit later.

(Click to enlarge)

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Some Game News

Thomas Cross, a writer for, stopped by my booth at E3 and really enjoyed Closure. So he decided to give us questions! You can read it here.

Also, a game that I did 'box art' for was finally released. It's a very challenging 8-bit style platformer called Lastman. It's meant to be hard with all those fun glitches that old NES titles had. You can download the boxart wallpaper I made for it on my website. Play it for free on!

After a couple months of the game just sitting around on PiGPEN's computer, he finally submitted Lastman, a very challenging platformer. It's meant to be hard with all those fun glitches that old NES titles had. You can download the boxart wallpaper I made for it here.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Closure Concept Art

I got back from interning at my Uncle's 3d animation company so now I'm starting work on Closure, at last.

So after long hours of doing doodles and sketches I've found a pretty solid style for the basis of the entire game, and more importantly our first level set, a "Factory". I've begun to do some drawings and we've started talking about how the graphics will be done for the graphical capabilities I wanted to try out for the game. I've been really busy with travel and inevitable personal roadblocks in the past month (and more to go over the next year or so) but I'm working around them.

Alright, well here's a wallpaper of a bunch of concept art mumbo jumbo to bask in for hopefully more than a few days. Here's a link to fullsize:

I'm going to start doing more - more closely related to how the in-game graphics will actually look, work, and feel. I've done a couple but they aren't as accurate as I would like so I have to draw some more stuff that include the small features I need Tyler to add in eventually so I can start playing with his fancy editors he so kindly created for me!

PS. Again, nothing is permanent, not even the title logo (which Tyler alerted me, looks like flOw's title even though I've never played that game, but I guess I probably should sometime...lack of PS3...). However, this is probably the general direction of the art and style of the grayscale system in the game. (Big difference from high contrasted black and white!)

PSS. I don't know why my blog is so skinny looking and all my pictures get cropped but it's weird. If anyone knows how to fix this please do tell!

Friday, June 5, 2009

E3: Day 3

[[[Posting a day late]]]

I arrived at the convention center at 10am sharp, ready to go. Unfortunately for me, that is 'late' because that's when all the attendees are allowed in. I had to make my way through the crowd to get to the front, show my exhibitor pass and quickly walk up to my station. The booths all looked the same as yesterday, on the way there. This would be the only time I see them all day and I didn't know it yet.

I went the entire day without a single bathroom or food break. It was extremely crowded today. There were people left and right and they didn't stop coming to check out the IndieCade booth. Someone was always looking over my shoulder (or at least within a minute or two of each other), watching me play Closure. Many people were interested in playing it as well so I was busy teaching and letting them play while explaining how it worked to the people viewing from behind me.

While I didn't meet any big celebrities today, such as Dan, John, Morgan Webb, or Olivia Munn, I would say it was one of the more productive days I attended E3. I received the most business cards today and I completely wiped out my supply of cards! I still had a few extra personal cards so I had to write down the website,, on the back. So hopefully people read the back of the card and remember to follow our blog.

A lot has seemed to stir up about PSN (PlayStation Network) lately. Two interested guys came by and wanted to know who from PSN came by yesterday. The two from today easily recognized the names and were excited to know that they had stopped by. The downloadable content network PlayStation 3 has now seems to be very stable and well developed thus far and will definitely be considered as an option when choosing how we will market the new Closure.

I also met a few sound guys who compose and do music and sounds for games. We are trying to get the new game up to date with the old one this summer so we will be looking into sound. It's all being considered in the development and we haven't made a clear decision yet as to how we will be going about this. In the previous version, Tyler made the atmospheric tracks for the background. We just need to be able to plan ahead with the amount of money involved while selling the game.

The day was a long one, not taking any breaks at all, and letting many, many people test the game out. It was very nice of IndieCade to invite us all out there to participate as developers of the booth, and I look forward to any of their future plans with other conventions and festivals. E3 was very productive and we got a lot of Closure exposure (I had to, I'm sorry) which will help later down the road when we want to start selling the new, full version.

So thanks to everyone who came out to see it at the booth and I hope you start following our blog. We literally post most of our thought and development processes here so it will be very fun and interesting what comes out onto the blog, compared to the final release.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

E3: Day 2

I woke up this morning an hour earlier than yesterday to take off an hour before the show started. It started at 10am (Western) as opposed to arriving at 11am and starting 12 noon yesterday. I arrived right at 10 this morning when everyone started pouring in so it was a rush trying to break through the entering crowd and walk faster than everyone else to get to my booth area and setup. I eventually made it and hastily set up all the business cards and set my mind straight to play Closure for hours at a time.

Today seemed much different from yesterday. I guess it's because I had some experience from the day before. Many more people were willing to try the game out and get their hands on it as I explained how to play. Whereas yesterday, most people preferred to watch me play through the levels. I did that today, but not nearly as much as I did yesterday. Maybe it's because I had 2 more hours to demo today? Whatever it was, it was a slight difference from yesterday's show.

Today, a couple visitors from yesterday showed up and followed up with a few more questions for clarification of the design and concept behind it. I also noticed a lot more people who had already played the game online or knew about it before today. Some people started explaining the entire game to their friends beside them because they had already played through the whole thing online somewhere. It's very satisfying to see that other game developers or people in the industry take a look at a game and say 'I've actually played this already' when asking if they want to try it out. Replying to that is a little difficult at times because there's not much to say other than asking if they enjoyed it.

Another difference from yesterday, was that I had 2 chairs today, as opposed to 1 for myself. I was able to have many more one-on-one conversations with people who would sit down so I could demo or let them try Closure out, whilst still being at the same eye level. This created the oppurtunity to have good long talks, especially with some businessmen about the marketing and distribution of the new version of Closure. Now, we're still looking at options, so it's hard to say where we're going to go with it, but if we do our homework, it shouldn't be too difficult to decide by the time we're nearing the end of the development of the game.

About halfway through the show today, John, aka jmtb02 (, and Dan McNeely of showed up to pay a visit. It was great to finally see them in person after knowing of them for almost 5 years over the internet. John took a lot of pictures at E3, some of which were of me. At the computer. Playing Closure - and showing it off and explaining it to a few people passing by. I also took a couple of pictures of the setup as seen below.

Last but not least, I did end up bringing my laptop. I don't know if it was worth it because I couldn't keep it on due to lack of power outlets in the power strip. I did have it on for one slew of visitors to the booth though, one group being Armor Games. I used my laptop to show a little of the new Closure's mechanics such as spotlights, buttons, and physics-based balls.

So all in all, after talking to people from SCEA PlayStation Network (PSN), Zeevex, and about our undecided plans for marketing and distribution, it was a fun day to get to know more people who might be able to help us out in the future when we're looking to release. There are many options out there but we have time to choose what we think is the best. The game is continuing to be well-received amongstfellow game developers so it is a good sign.

As far as fun goes, I had about an hour or two to walk around and get something to eat. I discovered the entire other wing of the building where I found some more big name booths: Capcom, PlayStation, Nintendo, etc. I still haven't tested any games besides Final Fantasy Dissidia, but watching is okay with me considering I'm not an extreme gamer of most of the games such as Halo or Left4Dead. I walked around, saw what I could, took pictures of what I could, and tried to get on TV again when I could - (through G4's broadcasting in the E3 News booth with Attack of the Show and X-Play cast members as our dear hosts). It's definitely a blast being at E3 with all the happy and cool people around to meet and introduce myself to.

Tomorrow is the last day, so let's hope for the best!

Left to right: Dan (Armor Games), Me (Jon), John (

A couple pictures of the station I was set up at in IndieCade's booth. In the distance you can see the E3 news booth (with all the girders and stage lights) where G4 hosted the show live.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

E3: Day 1

So Day 1 of E3 finally ended. I started out by showing up to the IndieCade booth all the way to the back of the showfloor, about 3 stations to the left of the Square-Enix showbooth. Booted up Closure to level 26, where I left off the day before, and beat the rest of the game promptly before people started swarming into the place. I also set up a few stacks of business cards to the left and right of my table.

The exhibit show room was filled about 5 minutes after 12 (Western time). I sat there and played Closure (Flash version) as people started to walk by. Sometimes, if people looked interested or there was a group talking about it over my shoulder, I would turn around and explain to them the mechanics of the game.

I actually started talking to individuals at first because the room wasn't completely full yet. But I did talk to a member of Club Penguin of Nintendo, which is a kids' game based over the internet where players join in to playing the game up to 8 players at a time. Second, I talked to a lead graphics engineer from Ubisoft. He asked questions that involved the development process (blogs are good, wink wink). I answered by talking about all the beginning steps we took to refine the design of the game. A few visits by passersby later, and a lead artist from Blizzard shows up and sits down to take a gander at the game. I again explain to him a little about the art side and some of the design aspects. The whole day was great, getting to know a few people, introducing myself to the people that actually hire for this kind of stuff...It was a little strange but I got used to it after a little while.

Talking to other game developers is very interesting because you get a sense of where everyone else is coming from. It's a very unique experience being picked up by an indie-supportive company, IndieCade, to show off a web-based game. 5 years ago I wasn't thinking about how small games could possibly be recognized when I started making computer games. Nowadays, in a world where games repeat each other over and over and over and over again, developers are starting to pay closer attention to the 'little things' that people think are cool, that don't have to be mainstream to get the attention that a larger title could possibly get.

After a lot of explaining to people how we are actually releasing a newer version of the displayed Flash version, a few people were interested in marketing it, etc. We're not sure how we're going to go about selling the one yet, so stay tuned, because we're still looking at options. No need to jump into anything that hasn't even been made yet. Also, a few other guys were interested in seeing what has been programmed as far as the new version goes. I opened it from a USB drive I had with me to show them on the painfully low resolution monitor. They seemed impressed with the new mechanics and sharper, higher res. feel.

A couple interesting points were actually brought up about it. First, being, 'Do I really want to make graphics grayscale', meaning, take away all the true monochrome black and white and replace it with some graytones. We have decided that it is in the best interest of the new mechanics to have SOME graytones to bring more depth into the graphical style and level design. Fog being an important one. It will also alleviate some noise in the graphics when it's higher res. A second point brought up was a mechanic to have a timed light fade in or out, depending on how light or dark gray it gets before appearing or disappearing. This could be a cool concept and I believe it has been discussed. Buttons and gravitational balls can actually be used to achieve a timed floor effect right now.

Usually before talking to people I would ask if they wanted to play the game. At first no one really wanted to, but later in the day more people were interested in actually sitting down and spending time on it. I eventually took an hour break, and of course, that's when Daisuke Kobayashi, producer of Square-Enix(!!!) stops by and leaves his card and a promotional flyer for me on my table. The volunteer helping to demo Closure as I was absent was kind enough to save them for me, fortunately. I eventually returned after eating some overpriced pizza and taking a lap around the showroom to check it out a bit.

Most of the last hour of the show was spent letting people play test, while talking to others that were standing nearby. I didn't demo too much by myself the last hour because I was getting a lot of people that were actually interested in playing it for themselves.

Overall, we got very positive feedback from our game and it was definitely worth going today. Tomorrow, (technically, later today), I hope to fix up the new version so that it runs properly on the 600x800 screen resolution I'm using at the moment.

I hope to see you there!

Thursday, May 28, 2009


So I've been in LA for a few days now (and I'll be here until mid-June), interning with my uncle for 3d Animation. It's been cool seeing what they do here and I'm learning a lot. I'll be here for a couple more weeks, with the exclusion of being at E3 for a few days during work hours (so I won't be doing much 3d during those days).

I've still got a ways to go with what I want to accomplish 3d Animation-wise here, learning Maya and potentially After Effects. Hopefully I'll be able to retain most of the things I'm cramming into my brain right now. I want to be far ahead of all my classes when it comes to advanced 3d stuff, so I can end up concentrating on personal projects to get me good money when I get out of school.

I'm trying to finish my website before next week before E3 and get some Closure concepts done. We'll see how it goes.

It has been quite a busy month!

Monday, May 18, 2009


Long since I started doing internet fun-things, way back when I started using RPG Maker and slowly progressing to Flash and Photoshop, I was using the name 'Starogre'. I eventually created a character for the name and it caught on so I started theming my Flash movies and Website off of it. But now, getting work and getting jobs and getting paid requires your real name in real life - not a username. So I'm transitioning from 'starogre' to 'jonschubbe' as a way to make my online appearance more professional, and so potential clients or developers see me as a person rather than a fictional storybook or video game character.

I notice I am slowly being known as my real name by a few acquaintances online so it's not out of the question that I am known for who I actually am. So far, I've made a twitter, an art blog (this one; or so it will be when I get more stuff done - and I'll eventually connect this with my website), co-writing for the Closure Game Dev blog, creating a new website, and from that I got a new email address.

The reason I'm becoming so 'professional' all of a sudden is because I'm attending E3 this year to demo Closure so I need to be presentable and have all of my information ready. I made a more indepth post about it here.

So make sure to follow this blog for future updates on my illustration, animation, and games! Follow me on twitter, too, and be sure to keep up to date on the latest Closure updates on its blog as well.

My site should be up within the next week or so.

And here is a picture of my first personal business card ever. I will be handing them out at E3 along with the Closure ones.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Little Birdie

A little birdie told me that since blogs are growing in popularity, dev blogs are being looked at by more and more professionals as portfolios. Some still like the 'Top 5 projects you have worked on, on the very front page of your site, in your face' method, but more and more are looking at your development processes and how you work through projects. Soooo I am starting a blog.

I will be posting updates on projects and games I am working on, along with other various art and animation, so stay tuned!