Like most of us, Gunpoint developer Tom Francis “doesn’t really know what [Steam] trading cards are”. Fortunately, he’s surrounded himself with people who do, and passed Valve an armful of profile backgrounds, badges, emoticons, and “sumptuous” pieces of pixel art created by the man responsible for the game’s lean look, John Roberts. I’ve already watched the trailer below – a temporal quirk of being a news writer – so can assure you that “sumptuous” is the appropriate adjective.
One thing Francis evidently does know how to do is sell Gunpoint. To that end he’s announced a two-day sale – already begun and ending at 4pm PDT / midnight BST on Thursday – and opened up a couple of new ways for players to buy a little more.
Gunpoint was originally priced at three different levels: $10, $20 and $30 editions allowed Francis to keep the price of entry low while “letting people support it more if they wanted”.
“What we found was that lots of people bought the game as cheaply as possible, then discovered they liked it a lot,” he says. “They’d e-mail or tweet to ask if there’s a way to support the game and get all the behind-the-scenes extras that came with the other editions.”
So now there is. The extras bits, namely the soundtrack, making-of video, playable prototypes and commentary that integrates the developers as in-game characters to be listened to, shot or pummelled to your heart’s content, are now “technically DLC”.
So what’s next for Gunpoint? Firstly, a version of the game that supports Steam Workshop, and therefore easier trading of the levels players have been studiously building since release. In six months’ time, I suspect Gunpoint will be worth playing in much the same way Portal 2 is: as a Steam-automated tour through the top-rated levels – inevitably a what’s what of absurdly complicated puzzle design.
After that, there’ll be ports for Mac and Linux. Good. Ooo – while you’re here, you should read our Gunpoint review.
Have you tried any player-generated Gunpoint levels yet?