Want to come chill with Lantana Games? We have a couple upcoming events later this month and in early March! Come play games, buy merch, and meet the team.
February 24 & 25, Microsoft New England Research & Development, Cambridge, MA
We’ll be returning to the Game Challenge for our third year in a row, and we’ll be bringing Mondrian with us! The MassDiGI Game Challenge is a one-of-a-kind pitch competition and event that helps aspiring game developers launch new games. Come play the latest updates to Mondrian while you’re there and learn more about Lantana’s endeavors to help students jumpstart their careers in game development.
March 10, 2017, District Hall, Boston, MA
MassDiGI would like to welcome all to the annual Made In MA at PAX East Party! Lantana Games is headlining the Indie Showcase again, and we’re going to be bringing everything we got. Compete in a high stakes Mondrian Arcade Mode challenge to win awesome prizes! Early bird tickets are just $10 (ends 2/13), $15 after, and $20 at the door.
Hope to see you there!
Well LantanaFam, Version 6.0 of our website has officially arrived! As we jump into our eighth year, we wanted to deliver a cleaner, faster-loading, and more on-brand homepage for everyone. In terms of actual content, what you will find here is identical to what we had before, but with several major improvements:
- Lighter Branding: We have updated our branding to be more colorful and modern, and matched the site to our new color scheme. Readability and simplicity were key in designing the new site.
- Mobile Friendliness: The whole site has been pre-cached in an effort to greatly improve load times on both desktop and mobile. Certain elements of the site are also controlled differently or turned off on the mobile page to make it as mobile-friendly as possible.
- Game Pages: Game pages are now laid out in a clean manner, with small galleries, clear info, and easy-to-find links. Scrolling credits are still included!
- Openings: Team Openings are now listed in a convenient Toggle Box.
- Content Creators: The “Press and Streamer Keys” page has been renamed to “Content Creators” and moved from the footer to under Community. Key access has also been placed into a convenient Toggle Box.
This new layout is also going to make things a lot easier to add new content, blog posts, and pages, so keep an eye out for more goodies coming soon!
2017 is shaping up to be a very exciting year for Lantana Games and this new site is just the start. Stay tuned, we promise there’s a lot in store.
Have we got a treat for you today! Lantana Games is proud to announce that the soundtrack to our latest game, Mondrian – Abstraction in Beauty, is now available for streaming on Youtube and Bandcamp! The music was written by our composers Davidjohn Blodgett & Hannah Hoyt, and features nearly an hour of jazz, trip hop, j-pop, piano, and ambient tracks. You can also buy tracks on Bandcamp for $1 each, or $8.99 for the whole soundtrack which includes an exclusive bonus track, Tonalism!
We hope you enjoy the music!
Ahoy Patriots! Who’s going to PAX East this weekend? If you’ll be there on Saturday, make sure to come to the panel “No Indie is an Island” at noon in the Cuttlefish Theater!
“Being an Indie developer doesn’t mean being alone. Learn from indie developers how finding the right team, engaging in the development community, and creating events can help you become a better developer and become a champion of friendships. Join the developers of Closure, Children of Liberty, Go Home Dinosaurs, Jungle Rumble, Elegy for a Dead World, and the event organizer from Indies Need Booze on how you can get involved in the community at large.”
The panel features myself (Dan), Jacob Clark (Indies Need Booze), Trevor Stricker (Disco Pixel), Ichiro Lambe (Dejobaan Games), Eitan Glinert (Fire Hose Games), Tyler Glaiel (mega indie, check out his upcoming game Bombernauts), and a surprise special guest:
TOM FULP OF THE BEHEMOTH!
You can learn more about the panel and other great talks in the PAX East schedule here: http://east.paxsite.com/schedule/panel/no-indie-is-an-island
If you have any questions about Children of Liberty or Lantana Games’ “teaching studio” efforts, Dan will be hanging around after the panel until The Enforcers tell him to clear out.
And yes, we’ll have EX12 news VERY SOON! This is a big one. Stay tuned, Patriots, and see you at PAX!
Via:: Children of Liberty News
This week’s Winter Colonial Recipe is a hearty bowl of Tidewater Chili! The Tidewater region is the easternmost portion of Virginia in what is known as the Commonwealth of Virginia. The term tidewater can be given to any area where the water level is significantly affected by the tides, and will vary based on the maximum tide height when the water comes in. Settlers of early America would plant fields of tobacco around this area to reap their crops using the excellent drainage system that came with the land. This recipe comes from the book Entertaining Ideas from Williamsburg.
Ingredients (18-20 servings)
4 large onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup peanut oil
3 cans (28 ounces each) Italian plum tomatoes
2 cans (29 ounces each) tomato puree
2 teaspoons oregano
2 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons basil
1/3 cup chili powder
2 tablespoons cumin
2 pounds Surry County, Virginia, smoked sausage or Italian smoked sausage
5 pounds lean chuck
4 cans (15 ounces each) red kidney beans, drained
It’s unclear to say if the region was known the chili bowl, or if the meal is representative of the watery characteristic that tidewater regions are known for, but one thing’s for sure: it is definitely delicious. This bowl of onions, red pepper flakes, smoked sausage and kidney beans are sure to warm the many stomachs of freezing Patriots all throughout the New England region. Begin by sauteing the chopped onions with some garlic in peanut oil. After a little bit stir in tomatoes, herbs, and spices and simmer this with the inclusion of lean chuck (ground meat). Drain the sausages and add this to the mixture, then simmer the whole thing for one hour. Finally, add the beans to the pot and you’ve got yourself a great colonial meal for the cold nights! The full recipe, with additional ingredients and instructions, can be found here (hyperlink: http://www.history.org/almanack/recipes/tidewaterchili.cfm?showSite=mobile-regular).
Greetings, Patriots! Today, we’d like to introduce you to the newest addition to the team from the MassDigi program, Max Meisel!
Hi, I am Max Meisel. I am an amateur Sound Designer, Foley Artist, Sound Engineer, and Musician. I primarily like to make Music and Sounds for games but i do other things too! LIke music and sound for animations! And mixing and mastering for trailers!
I am currently a student at Becker college, as well I am doing Sound work for a game called Children of Liberty that is currently in Steam Early Access, go check it out!! www.childrenofliberty.us/
Max is helping out with sound and music, and has already done some great work for the game and our latest two trailers. He will be specifically contributing to in-game level music and sound effects. Everybody say HI MAX!
Make sure to swing by Max’s SoundCloud page in order to check out some his previous work: https://soundcloud.com/max_meisel
We’re super excited to have Max on board and can’t wait to share more of his great work with you!
Via:: Children of Liberty News
This past weekend, we attended the MassDigi Game Challenge and had an excellent time! We’ve learned a lot about how to run a table at an event in the past, but the small environment really let us hone in on those lessons and gave us time to reflect on them. Here they are in clickbait-ready Top 10 form:
1. There is always money in the banana stand.
The first day we made enough to pay for parking. The second day, we made nearly the same amount. This was just from codes and leftover posters! People love buying stuff, and if you have goods that are worth selling, they are also worth buying.
2. Advertise everything an attendee can do at your table.
Your primary Call to Action is the most important part of your booth. Play the game? Watch the trailers? Meet the team? Buy stuff? Find some way to get the message out about your call to action. You should have two goals:
- Your Primary Call to Action is the one thing you want every attendee who visits your booth to do.
- Your Secondary Call to Action is the thing you want attendees who like your game to do.
Attendees who like your game are likely to want to play it again and/or find out about its updates. Welcome them into your community! Tell them about codes, swag, your forums, newsletter, survey, Kickstarter, and anything else you do. Someone who likes your game is likely to want to support you as a developer, either through spreading the word or monetarily.
3. Make your code cards look significant.
Attendees thought our code cards were free. This may be because they are standard business card size and weight. They look too small to be worth money, and the paper they are printed on is light. The intrinsic value of a tangible good is based on what a person can see and feel, not based on anything in the digital realm it may link to. If you’re going to be selling game codes, either put them on more significantly sized and weighted paper, or protect them in some way. We’ll be putting our current game codes in a protective, though clear, case (my old iPod Shuffle packaging, believe it or not), so they give off a more important vibe, and they can’t just be picked up off the table like a business card.
4. Swag is super duper important, but have it a month in advance or don’t count on having it at all.
UPS was supposed to get us new posters two days before the show. Due to it blizzarding like crazy in the Boston area, they did not arrive until the day after the show. It took 10 days for 5 day shipping. This is a reminder that if you are going to need swag for an event, have it ready to go long before the event itself.
5. Have a variety of swag, free and paid, and have one piece of swag that people won’t be able to get anywhere else.
Paid swag is great to put a bit more cash into your account, but sometimes people don’t want to pay for swag. In this instance, they should still be willing to take a pin and clip it to their shirt or bag, to help advertise your game to the world. Be ready to also make a kind of swag that no other booth could have. For instance, Riot Games brings League of Legends Teemo hats to PAX, and these are in high demand because they are so unique.
6. Come up with special deals that can only be used at your booth.
The Game Challenge was the first time we implemented a 20% Newsletter Subscriber discount. This discount was a huge incentive for attendees to spend money AND sign up for news about the game! That is absolutely staying. We also included the ability to get swag at half price when you purchase a code. This also worked great! So while attendees of course can get your game on Steam, the App Store, or wherever you’ve uploaded it, getting it with extra stuff they can’t get online, at discount, is huge.
7. Popup banner, popup banner, popup banner.
Popup banners are kind of expensive since they need to be on a banner stand or tripod. There’s not always room to hang up a horizontal banner, for whatever reason. In our case, it’s because Microsoft doesn’t like you taping things to their walls. So sadly we had no way to include some Z-Axis advertisement for our booth. In a small space like the Game Challenge, this isn’t a huge issue, but at a major event like PAX or BostonFIG, it could spell doom. Keep a vertical banner handy to take advantage of your floor space.
8. Vertical orientation is key!
Like I mentioned before, Z-Axis action is important. If you can’t get a vertical banner, get some stands for flyers or posters to stand up on your table. This is also a good way to post up a “menu” of sorts, to spell out your Primary Call to Action and show the prices of things you have for sale. Don’t make anyone look down at your table to get a sense of what’s going on. Everyone’s eyes are UP at an event, and their eyes should catch what you have going on.
9. Make sure all your trailers are at the same or similar volume level.
This was one that slipped our minds the first day of the Game Challenge. We had two news videos on display, and hadn’t checked the volume of them compared to our previous two videos. So we had to either raise and lower the volume all day, or mute the TV. By day two we had leveled out the volume of all videos with quick rerenders (and lucky for us that each video is around 1 minute long or we may not have had time for this). If you have multiple TV’s running, make sure that they are also at the same volume level (particularly say if one is running trailers and one is running the game, you don’t want either to get drowned out).
10. Always be ready to describe your game, your Primary Call To Action, and your latest news in one sentence each.
People’s time is precious is to them, but they as a customer are precious to you. Find that middle ground and be worth their time! First, give them the game pitch in one sentence. Then tell them why you’re at this particular event, also in one sentence. Pause for any questions, and answer them. Ask them if they would be interested in taking part in your primary CTA. If they say yes, you can easily follow up with the secondary CTA. If they say no, thank them for their time, point them toward the swag, and tell them to send their friends over.
Bonus Tip: Buy the most fun office supplies you can find!
There are always unexpected office supplies you never knew existed that can make great additions to any table space! For the Game Challenge, we found Dry Erase Tape. This was great for putting a strip at the top of our TV and writing out swag prices. It can also be used in a pinch for any impromptu sign, label, or really anything you need to write. We’ve put a strip on our new code card container to write the price on there AND be able to change it for sales or different games. This is just the smallest tip of the iceberg though! Get creative and drop a couple extra bucks to make your space your own.
Greetings, Patriots! We have finished up our brand new, Early Access Updates trailer. This trailer covers just a few highlights from our Early Access period so far. Check it out here!
As always, thank you for your feedback, comments, and critiques! Big things are on the way.
Via:: Children of Liberty News
Greetings, Patriots! We have a new video for you to check out this week, filled with incoming art from the talented students at the Massachusetts Digital Games Institute! Check out our first Artbook video right here. Many thanks to the hard work of Chenylle, Yuka, and Karen throughout the fall semester, and to the Videri String Quartet for their performance of Children of Liberty’s music for the video!
MassDigi Game Challenge
This week, the team is heading out to Cambridge for Mass DiGi’s[www.massdigi.org] Game Challenge of 2015! Contestants have registered and the developers are coming – let the games begin! Lantana Games has been selected to attend as part of the event’s featured companies.[www.massdigi.org] We will be exhibiting trailers of our game and selling awesome merch at our table! We’ve got posters for sale (see above) as well as IndieGameStand keys for access to the full game on Steam, Desura, and as standalone builds. Luckily for you subscribers, anyone who is signed up to our mailing list[eepurl.com] will receive a 20% discount on their purchase at the booth! Just give us your e-mail address and you’re good to go! That being said, for those you may know who want to get a sweet deal, anyone who signs up for the newsletter at our booth with also receive the discount. We can’t wait to see the amazing games this weekend, and we hope to see you there as well!
Via:: Children of Liberty News