Retrobooser Has Been Released

February 21, 2014 by Terry

It’s been a long time coming, but Retrobooster is available for purchase. It’s a true thrill to finally put this game out in the wild. Thank you to everyone who supported this project along the way: family, friends, testers, and open source contributors.

Get Retrobooster.

Retrobooster Trailer

January 20, 2014 by Terry

The official trailer for Retrobooster is finally out. The full game will release on February 21, 2014. You can download the demo right now if you want to give it a try. If you like it, don’t forget to vote for it on Steam Greenlight. Special thanks goes to Greg and Eric (blog, Twitter) for helping me record multiplayer clips for the trailer.

Retrobooster Demo Updated to Version 0.9.1

January 15, 2014 by Terry

First of all, I am planning to release Retrobooster on February 21. It will be available for purchase from this website, the Humble Store, Indie Game Stand, and Desura. I may sign up with one or two more distributors still. I am also working on a new trailer, which should be posted early next week if everything goes as planned.

You can download the new version of the demo from the downloads page. The list of changes is smaller than previous updates because I spent most of the past three months improving levels that are not in the demo.

The big addition this time around is the game save feature. Your game will be automatically saved each time you beat a level. This is more useful in the full version of the game because your first pass through all the levels can take upwards of twenty hours. The demo is much shorter.

  • Added Alt-F4 key command to quit game. It’s useful for when your boss walks by.
  • The game now saves automatically each time you beat a level. There are six save game slots available.
  • You can now only get a high score when beating the final level. This fits well with the save game features.
  • In single-player games any attached game controller will now work, so you don’t have to select your controller in the Controls menu.
  • Game controller menu navigation has been improved in various ways.
  • The game is paused when its window loses focus. This is helpful if your operating system opens a window on top of your game for any silly reason.
  • Overhauled sound effects. They now have better relative gains and many sounds stand out better.
  • Many cosmetic tweaks, including some work on fire particles.

For more than a decade now Intel has crippled its own OpenGL driver to protect Windows users from themselves, causing OpenGL screensavers to run slowly with software rendering or not run at all. The proper way to run would be at a high frame rate using hardware acceleration. The partial workaround all this time has been to change the screensaver suffix from .scr to something like .sCr. This subtle change in capitalization often tricks the Intel driver into working the way it should. However, this solution has been hit-or-miss with varying results reported by different users.

Enter Keith Golon, who sent in another piece of the puzzle last month. He found that a complete fix involved giving a screensaver a DOS-compliant 8.3 character name. Some of Really Slick Screensavers have more than eight characters in their names, and this was causing problems with Intel drivers. I tested this on my own computer with Intel HD 4000 graphics. In my test, an 8-character name allows the screensaver to be started normally by the Windows screensaver daemon. The .sCr trick allows the saver to be started by double-click, run in the preview window, and run fullscreen by pressing the Preview button. Using both of these tricks fixes everything.

 Hyperspace.scr   Hyperspace.sCr   Hyperspc.sCr 
double-click fail success success
tiny preview window fail success success
Preview button fail success success
run normally by screensaver daemon fail fail success

This could be a good permanent solution to Intel’s indifference if the behavior is the same for enough testers. If you have Intel graphics and want to give it a try, rename a saver with a longer-than-8.3 name. For example, Skyrocket.scr would become Skyrockt.sCr. Test to see if it runs all four ways: double-click, in the small preview window, press the Preview button, and let the saver turn on normally. Please post your results in the comments.

Retrobooster on Be Indie Now

December 9, 2013 by Terry

Be Indie Now Episode 6 is out now. This is Tobiah Mark’s podcast where he has interviews and panel discussions with indie game developers. In this episode we have a detailed conversation about Retrobooster and indie gaming.

Upcoming Events in San Francisco

October 28, 2013 by Terry

Retrobooster will soon be shown at a couple events in San Francisco. The first is CODAME’s 5ENSES, a festival for the five senses on November 1 and 2, 7pm-1am. The festival will include a game room where a few local indie studios will be showing their games. This event is enabled by donations. Please give them a few bucks and come visit.

The next event will be the Good Game Club on November 13, 7-10pm. This is more indie game-focused. There should be around twenty local studios showing their indie games to the press and players. Come try them all. Tickets are $6 before November 8 and $8 after that.