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Dec 2, 2011

An Unfortunate Announcement on Word Fighter

It sucks to be writing this, but I might as well get straight to it:

We're pushing back the release of Word Fighter to February 2012.

Simply put, we need more time. We very much wanted to launch this fall, but we would never be satisfied with releasing the game in its current state. It would be a disservice to give the players a mediocre experience out the gate, especially with Word Fighter being a multiplayer-focused game at launch. In order for the online community to thrive, the network play needs to be great, with minimal lag, and finding someone to play a match with should be very quick and easy. It simply isn't there yet, so the best decision for us is give ourselves more time to get it there.

I'm going to pull back the curtain a bit on how our team operates. While FEY is an independent development team, we all still have full-time jobs. I do interface design work for mobile products, and Kris does full-time iOS development in Washington, DC. The rest of the team includes a consultant, a bartender, and a teacher. Our full-time gigs pay the bills, and we work on Word Fighter on every available night and weekend we have. It's not an ideal situation, but we deal with it as best we can. If we were lucky enough to be working on Word Fighter full-time, the game would have already come out. But it is what it is.

We love what we do, and we are incredibly proud of what we've accomplished so far with Word Fighter. We just need a little more time to make the launch release as awesome as it can be. We promise it will be worth the wait.

Thanks,

Gian Cruz
Co-Founder and Designer

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Sep 12, 2011

Word Fighter at PAX 2011!


Digo, Gian, Raf, and Kris in front of the Word Fighter booth

Hello, one and all! It has been two weeks since PAX Prime 2011, and I think we've finally recovered from the madness of it all. It was an amazing experience for all of us, and we could not have asked for a better response to our little game.

Four people from the Word Fighter team represented at PAX -- Raf, Digo, Kris, and myself. Our trusty composer Whitaker Blackall was there in spirit, especially since his soundtrack was looping the whole time we were manning the booth! And speaking of booths, it was quite exhausting to man our Word Fighter booth for three solid days, even though we were 4 men strong! We were demoing the game nonstop the whole weekend, which is really nothing to complain about. Having lots of people wanting to play your game is a great problem to have.

Unfortunately, manning our Word Fighter booth meant that we barely had any time to do much else during the show. We wish we could have seen more of the floor and attended more panels, but alas, showing our game was top priority. We hardly had any time to play the other games in the PAX 10, which is a damn shame! We had an absolute blast playing the few that we could, like The Splatters and Jamestown. But regardless, it was such an honor to share the stage with those wonderful games. My biggest regret was not playing FEZ, despite their table being right next to ours. I think I was just too intimidated to approach the almighty Phil Fish during the show. Next time, I hope.


With the guys from The Splatters, Atom Zombie Smasher, and Vanessa Saint-Pierre Delacroix 

Even though the PAX 10 booths were located on a separate floor from the main exhibit hall (some dubbed it as the "Indie Floor"), we still got a lot of foot traffic coming through the area. I'm pretty sure it helped that we were right next to the Minecraft booth, though! We were also quite thankful a number of podcast panels recommended that people seek out Word Fighter at the show, including the Giant Bombcast and Weekend Confirmed. Attendees would approach our booth the next day saying that "Giant Bomb" or "Weekend Confirmed" told them to do so. Sincerest thanks to those panels for their kind words about our game!

My favorite thing to take away from the show was finding people that I was already a fan of approaching our booth and becoming fans of Word Fighter themselves! Fellow developers from PopCap, Bungie, and Supergiant Games showed us some love, and I could not have more respect for them. Jerry "Tycho" Holkins, writer of Penny Arcade, immediately became a fan after playing a VS match with a fan (interestingly enough, he never got to see the game during the judging for the PAX 10). A number of media personalities also came by to play the game, including the awesome guys from The Totally Rad Show and the crew from Hey Ash, Whatcha Playin. Even the illustrious Felicia Day stopped by with her pals, and she could not wait to get her hands on it. Can a fanboy-turned-developer really ask for more?


Gian with Jeff, Dan, and Alex from The Totally Rad Show

It was an incredibly fulfilling weekend for us, and it made the months upon months of allnighters worthwhile. It took a while for us to recover from it (with sprinklings of PAX flu permeating the team), but we are now recharged with more drive and creative fuel to push towards our launch this fall. Thank you to everyone for coming by and showing their support, and we can't wait to show you the final product in a few months!

Your friendly neighborhood game designer,
Gian

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Aug 26, 2011

Our newest Word Fighter character: The Brothers

Jane and Homer have been announced on Forbes Woman and Couchbound respectively, and now it's time to debut our fifth playable character in Word Fighter: The Brothers!

The Brothers are in fact two characters fighting together as one team. As such, their special powers are themed after multiples of two: they can switch the locations of 2 letters, split an opponent's damage by half, and multiple their own damage by 2. Our quick bio for The Brothers...

An axe-happy hunter and a pompous prince, this daunting duo packs twice the rhetorical punch. Legend has it that their powerful verbiage comes from their ability to shape-shift into a big bad wolf and a formidable frog.

What you will also notice above are our designs for trading cards with information on The Brothers. We've created Marvel-style trading cards for each of our 6 playable characters, and we will be giving them away this weekend at PAX 2011 in Seattle! If you're attending PAX Prime, be sure to stop by our booth in the PAX 10 area to play the game and collect our cards. This also means that PAX attendees will be the first to see our 6th and final playable character in our launch roster.

Hope to see you guys there!

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Aug 15, 2011

Video: Word Fighter Debut Trailer

We're excited to release the debut trailer for Word Fighter! Here's where you'll finally be able to see the new game in action, with Edgar, Agatha, and Jane as our featured characters. Word Fighter is slated to be released this Fall 2011 for iOS (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch) and Android devices.

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Jul 8, 2011

Word Fighter is in the PAX 10!


We really thought we were a long shot... but it's actually happened! Word Fighter has been selected for this year's PAX 10 at Penny Arcade Expo 2011! Words can't express how excited we are to be chosen as one of PAX's favorite independent games this year. It feels great to be validated in such a way by your peers in the industry -- it means the hard work has not been in vain!

Big thanks & congratulations goes out to the Word Fighter team: Kris Zabala, our co-founder and rockstar developer, Raf & Digo Salazar, our amazing artists pumping out fantastic character designs and animations, and Whitaker Blackall, hands down the best and hardest working composer I know. And a special thanks to our friends Ed, Cup, Oguns, Lily, Kareena, and Yida for all their support, advice, and voice acting in our game!

Speaking of the game, we have yet to officially reveal the new art style for Word Fighter, so I guess here it is! Below is the latest screenshot, with an all-new theme featuring our new literary superhero characters. Agatha is battling Edgar in his mansion, and she looks poised to win:

We'll have more updates very soon, including a debut trailer showing off new in-game footage.

If you're going to PAX Prime this year, stop by our booth and check out our game! We can't wait to see you.

Cheers,
Gian

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