I broadly assume that developers who make games I like are doing well financially, because my taste is impeccable and surely everyone shares it. Puppygames make things like Droid Assault and top tower defence Revenge of the Titans, so how could they possibly be in trouble? Oh but they are, they are. Facing running out of money before they could possibly finish their current game, Battledroid, they’re throwing everything into one final short game. Puppy are now working on a roguelike-like stealth game named after its setting that’ll fill your heart with dread: Basingstoke.
Puppygames explained Basingstoke (the game) in their blog post breaking the bad news:
Under cover of darkness you’ve got to do what any normal person would do when in Basingstoke – which is try to get as far away from Basingstoke as you can. It’s a brutal arcade roguelike game with no hitpoints, only instant death. Your main tools are sneaking, distraction, surprise, and running away. There should be a bit of crafting as well to improvise gadgets to help you. Guns are a last resort and there won’t be many of them about.
But why Basingstoke? Well, in the Titans games, the Hampshire town was the first invaded by alien forces. And it’s one of those anywhere places that we’re supposedly okay to rag on. You know, like Loughborough (cheers and jeers rise from old PC Gamer readers necking real ale at the bar).
Puppy only had four months of funds left when they made the decision at the start of May. “Due to several decisions of dubious merit last year we’ve ended up wasting most of our cash on things that never flew,” they said. Oh dear. Free-to-play massively multiplayer war game Battledroid was still looking at another year of development, so they threw everything at a smaller game they might get to finish. Trying to Kickstart Battledroid would take too long and be unlikely to succeed, Puppy say. They also briefly worked on prototyping a pretty-looking arcade dogfighter named Skies of Titan.
Puppygames plan to release Basingstoke in October, a bit after they run out of money.