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Quality First: Remaking a whole area from scratch

Dear lovely Monster Boy fans friends and followers,

sometimes the development process can be cruel. It can take months of work before you realize that certain things are not clicking - not working as planned. Just like a volcanic eruption, the catastrophe unfolds and for a quality oriented development team this could mean to throw away a majority of work and start from scratch.

Lion-Man is bored from all the wait so he went treasure hunting - with style!

We are tirelessly challenging ourselves during the development of Monster Boy as our mission is to deliver an absolute Must-Have Action Adventure that shines in every aspect possible.

This is the story of the Volcano area of Monster Boy..
We've spent the last 3 months rebuilding the entire area (2 hours of playtime) as we felt it wasn't good enough and our fans deserve only the best. Today I can tell you that we tremendously succeeded and this area is now rising from its ashes to become a new highlight in the game. Everything was redone. New gameplay elements have been implemented, new enemies have been created. It's so much fun now!

The fire-walker is a new enemy who can jump out of lava and surprise us!

We're going to post more regular updates in the future so you don't have to wait months again.
Sorry again for the continued delays but we're sure you agree with us that quality is so important. Shigeru Miyamoto once said: A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad and he's so damn right!

Please stay tuned!


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Eye Candy! Cranking up the graphics

Dear fellow Monster Boy friends,

it's time for a new update! :-)
We're very sorry about the 2 months of radio silence but it was just because the whole team is working hard on finishing the game. While we're still tuning levels we also put the finishing touches on the graphics. Oh boy - the game is going to look so nice!

Below you'll find two images, old and new.
Monster Boy gets all the treatment of light work and detail now in the final stage of development.

OLD
The first version of graphics used during development
NEW
The final look of the game with added lighting and detail
As you can see all the pieces fall into place now. Please know that any delay in the past had the sole purpose of improving the game. Thanks for staying around and supporting us !
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Monster Boy Q&A - What is Monster Boy?

Dear fellow Monster Boy friends,

it's time for another blog update! Today we'd like to take the time to answer some questions we've received in the past. We also would like to clarify what exactly is Monster Boy in the context of the original Wonder Boy in Monster World series. But before we provide answers, have a look at a recent screenshot!

Misty Woods:
We explore the forest area with Lion-Man. Beware of the poisoned water!


Is Monster Boy a remake or an all new game ?
Monster Boy is an all new game based on the Wonder Boy in Monster World series. You'll explore 'Monster World Kingdom' that contains various references to Monster World II-IV but in its core offers a completely fresh experience.

Does it play like the old games?
We updated the core mechanics to offer a more dynamic and modern experience but this doesn't mean we made it more complicated to play. Fans of the classic series will feel at home but enjoy increased pacing and a wider range of combat moves, level and puzzle designs. You'll even be able to turn whole rooms upside down and shake them up for some puzzle solving.

What can you tell us about the animal transformations ?
There's Human, Pig, Snake, Frog, Lion and Dragon form. Monster Boy allows to instantly switch to any form once you unlocked it. Each form has advantages but also comes with drawbacks. The level design invites you to switch your form often and find the best strategies. You can even switch your form while jumping to reach certain places and secrets. This makes for some very dynamic gameplay.

Is the game level based ?
You'll explore a completely interconnected open world that allows you to go everywhere based on your abilities. You may find a path locked for a while but it opens up once you found new equipment or a new animal form. Make sure to remember previously closed pathways so you can return later and explore every corner in the game.

Is this an official successor ?
Yes, Monster Boy is an official successor in the series. We cooperate with the original series creator Ryuichi Nishizawa (former WESTONE) and licensed all assets from LAT corporation. Monster Boy continues the tradition of the last two Genesis games which offered a wide range of locations, many NPCs to help and various puzzles to solve. You'll even meet Pepelogoo!

Then why don't you name it Wonder Boy in Monster World V?
The Wonder Boy series has an extreme title fragmentation depending on which country it was released. In Japan it was called Monster World, in Brazil they named it Turma da Mônica em o Resgate, based on a comic book series character. The IP for the title Monster World isn't owned by SEGA anymore and that made it difficult to bring all together again. Monster Boy is mostly based on the Sega Genesis series which means it's closest to the original and wide spread Monster World naming of the series. In the end, Monster Boy was the most elegant solution for us. We could secure this IP for worldwide use now and it's the next best thing to the original name.

On which platforms do you release Monster Boy?
The game will release on Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC. We plan to support more platforms later but that depends on the sales of the game and players feedback.

How long is the game?
It will take around 10 hours to finish the game.

Physical Copy??
We are currently looking into several options. Please stay tuned for an announcement at a later time.

I've seen reviews of the game. Can you send me a review copy?
At this point, there is no way any press member could've made a review of Monster Boy. All we showed so far is a relatively short demo that was made for 10 minute sessions on show floors like PAX.

WHEN ???
We can't believe that we already spent 3 years on making the game. Time goes by so fast! When we started the project, we imagined a very small action adventure to enjoy in between other games. Now it became a huge game with a high variety of gameplay, locations and features. We will announce the release date at a later point. Please know that every delay means you get a better game, because we tirelessly work on improving it.

Why don't you release the demo ?
We don't want to spoil your experience with a demo that we made specifically for the show floor. The demo is made for very short plays and to show off the idea behind the game. It doesn't depict the final experience.



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Jin gets a new face!

Dear followers, fans and friends - welcome to 2017!

This is the year in which we finally finish the production of Monster Boy and release the game. So much has been going on in a development cycle that clocks in ~3 years ! The game isn't gold yet but we're progressing nicely with polishing and fine details.

Before we continue - look at this beauty running on 21:9 Monitor!
So much is going on in this screen. The piranha jumping out of the water, fire flower attacking, shimmering sea...but what's this?!
Jin has a new face! :o
After receiving several feedback about the look of our main character, we tuned it a little more.

We really like the final look of Jin. He's more determined, curious and we can play nicely with his hair while he jumps, attacks and moves in this roller coaster of a game!

Monster Boy will sim-ship on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4
While we don't have a launch date yet, we are happy to announce that we ship the game to three platforms on Day1 which includes Switch, PS4 and Xbox One. We love to play Monster Boy everywhere so a Switch version was a must for us. Will you join us on Day 1 ?

Meet us on PAX South!
We're attending PAX South from Jan. 27, 2017 to Jan. 29, 2017 and if you get the chance please visit us and try our games on various machines! We're looking forward to meet you.

As always please feel free to drop us a message or questions.

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A spooky place..

Dear followers, fans and friends,
we've got a new update today! Just in time for Halloween we'd like to share a new screenshot from a really spooky place in the game. Before we enter this ghostly mansion here, we switched to the pig to search the area for secrets.

Woah - entering a ghostly mansion at full moon - right next to the graveyard. What a spooky adventure!
With this image we want to show you how far we've come since the beginning of the project. The graphics are reaching a point where we're really happy with the style, level of detail and depth of the image. We believe - after all the work we put into this, we're getting there! Do you agree?

While the graphics are polished further, we're still working on levels, bosses and animation quality. The extended development time until 2017 allowed us to create what we always intended. The finished game will be a work of art.

And that's not all - the music production is reaching the final stage as well!
Toshiyuki Tanahashi is the man on the bass - just one of many real instruments that have been recorded.
The recording sessions are finished and the music in the game will reach the final quality soon. It sounds so much better to have real instruments playing in background.

Last but not least we'd like to mention Paris Games Week which starts this week! If you get the chance please visit our 'Monster Boy' demo station at the Games Made In France booth. Check Hall 2.2, Booth D020. We're looking forward to see you there!
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Final pass for background graphics

Dear followers and fans,

today I want to give you some more insight on our final pass of background graphics work. See - you're never finished when working on a game. We learn and keep pushing ourselves to get the best possible experience. Sure, the most important job is to get the gameplay and levels right, but we also want to have a nice visual experience.

Here are 3 samples of new background graphics intentions fresh from the 'factory' :-)
Don't mind the sketchy UI elements or character placement. These are not screenshots from the game, but montages for concept approval.

Volcano:
The top image shows the old version, below is the new graphics intention for more depth and vibrance.

Sky Village:
Same order, top image is the old background. We believe the new version below adds more depth and magic.

West Fields:
Did you spot the difference here? :-)

We hope you agree that these changes add to the overall visual appeal and are worth the effort. We'll keep you posted with more development insight while we work towards finishing the game production. Thank you for your continued support and great feedback! The whole team really appreciates all the kind words and great comments here on the blog.

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Gamescom 2016 Trailer: The Power of Six!

Exciting times ahead! Gamescom 2016 starts this week and it's the first time to have a playable demo of Monster Boy on the showfloor. If you visit Gamescom this year, please check out the Xbox booth in Hall 8. We hope you enjoy the gameplay as much as we do while developing this game. For everyone else we released a new trailer today!


This new trailer contains quite some action, phew! How will you play the game when you can choose between up to 6 different characters with unique powers and you can hot-swap them anytime? It's magical and pure fun! We hope you like the new gameplay scenes and can't wait to share the game with you when it's finally ready to launch. Please stay tuned for more updates.
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Six perspectives to explore

Time for a new update on our development progress! Last time we showed you concept art from the caves, now we already have playtesters exploring it in the game.

Snake going vertical! What's up there?
It's thrilling to see people enjoying the various transformation forms. There's a lot of variety on how to play the game depending which character is active. It's like playing the game from six perspectives, with each form offering awesome possibilities. Plus imagine what happens when you switch them on the fly that's so many ways to beat the game and discover secrets!

Lion-Man is strong and fast - is he the right choice to pass the volcano ?
The Frog is one of our favorite characters as his tongue is magical! You'll be surprised what he can do with it! But for now we just need him for a lengthy and dangerous underwater section. No need for additional oxygen!

Frog-Man is a great swimmer, he can overcome lengthy underwater passages without oxygen.

We still have new ideas coming everyday and it seems we need 10 Monster Boy games to realize all that...
The sky is the limit! Dragon-Man is the last playable form. This image is from the intro.

Lastly we'd like to thank everybody who sent us encouraging feedback by email or in the blog! It's pushing us to keep working hard and we love you for that! Please stay tuned ^_^


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Creating Worlds

Dear lovely followers and friends,
wow - it was great to see so much support on our last post including the first entry in the official Sony blog.
That's it - we have the worlds best fans and community. Together we're strong! :-)

Today we'd like to give you a little update on our progress. Lots of level design was done and while the team is still working on the map, puzzles and enemies, the artists are also fine tuning the games artwork including new iterations of existing level graphics so we get a nice world that fits together properly. Many worlds are finished, but some are not - like our so called 'Maze Cave' level.

Straight from the level editor we're already having neat graphics for this area which will be explored with the Snake form.

The snake is exploring a dark area inside the cave, light source are just some small crystals

The atmosphere is great with limited light sources but the cave is big and we also have brighter areas that should support a magical and also colorful experience. The first thing to do is always to create a rough concept artwork of it which looks like this:

3rd iteration of an art concept for the brighter areas in the cave. We like this one!

You'll experience the final version of the cave in the game and we hope you'll like it! We put a lot of love into each area so you have a great time enjoying every aspect of it. Reworking and polishing existing designs is also a reason for the initial delay of the game.

Last but not least - here we have a sample for a final design of the 'West Fields' area of the game. We explore it with the Pig-Man and he just reached a dead-end. The water is poisoned!

Pig-Man reached a dead end here - he has to return later to cross the poisoned water.

We hope you like what you see! :-) Please stay tuned and recommend this blog to your friends. Thanks a lot!


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Please visit the PlayStation blog on March 4!

Dear Monster Boy followers, fans and interested gamers - sorry for the silence!
We're crunching and working hard to finish the game. While we get closer to the finishing line, there's still a lot to do, so please don't expect a release in the first half of 2016. Since we're going to release the game simultanously on PS4 and Xbox One - we need an additional buffer for the release window on top of the porting work.

Someone told Pig-Man the finishing line is on the left, now he really wants to get there quickly!


Y'all know that creating a game is only one side of the medal - we also need to get some buzz and work on the marketing side. On March 4, we'll have our first blog post on the official Sony Playstation Blog! It's the first time we're introducing the game to a general audience of players and we hope there's some good feedback. Please support us and do some noise! ^_^

About Platforms
We hear you loud and clear! There's PS Vita, WiiU and even more. We totally agree that these platforms need to get Monster Boy, too! We love Nintendo! However, it's impossible for us to work on all portings at the same time. Also, the game needs to sell well enough so we're able to finance the porting work as it can be very time consuming. Since we don't have any guarantee for success, we just can't announce additional platforms at the moment.
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First Gameplay Video - Merry Christmas!

Dear Friends and Followers, we're so happy to finally present you the first official Gameplay Video of Monster Boy! Thank you for all your patience while we're still working on the game. Oh what a year it was! We've made a lot of progress on the game but as you know we couldn't make it in 2015 as we want the best possible quality for you. We hope you enjoy the gameplay snippets that you can see in the video and we're so looking forward to 2016! The year in which we can finally release the game to you and have fun together!


We're planning to begin our marketing activities early 2016 - any help and support is greatly appreciated and needed! Please recommend it to your friends and make some noise! Thank you so much!

We wish all of you a Merry Christmas and A Healthy Happy New Year 2016. #Love
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All OST Talents revealed

Today we would like to reveal all music talents that work on Monster Boy And The Cursed Kingdom. We are very happy about the incredible talents who joined our project. They are doing an outstanding job to fill your and our hearts with joy while playing the game and listen to its beautiful soundtrack.

BIG THANKS TO: Yuzo Koshiro, Motoi Sakuraba, Michiru Yamane, Keiki Kobayashi, Takeshi Yanagawa and Haruka Shimotsuki!

Furthermore we would like to take the chance to recommend a recent Interview that was made with the Monster Boy producer on SEGA-16. Please support the site and spread the word! Thank you!

MONSTER BOY INTERVIEW

A great site, please support it and check out the Monster Boy Interview

Last but not least: Expect a gameplay video in December - we will post it before leaving for Christmas vacation. Please stay tuned!

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Oh boy...that door. Must enter!

What a beautiful day to explore temples! We can't reveal what's inside..but how about listening to a music preview of this area ? :-)

The game is really shaping up but there's so much work left to do. We hope to show you a gameplay video the next time.

..no pressing up to enter for now - it's just a screenshot ^^

OST Sample
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Holy smokes, he's doing it again!

The team is working on many details which also includes improving the animation of the characters. We heard some people ask to let the pig-man IDLE smoke so here we are, he's doing it again ! :-)

ESRB rating category just went up..


You certainly remember where it all started :-)

be careful...smoking changes your skin tone
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Monster Boy arrives 2016, new subtitle, new screen!

Sorry friends, we won't make it in 2015. :/ Monster Boy needs more time and we agreed to give it the polishing it deserves. This means the release has to move to 2016.

Here's a new screenshot from the game. What a spooky place!

Woah - that skeleton looks dangerous. Let's go slowly from here...

We target Q1 2016 now and the team is working hard on creating the game we all want to play so badly. It will be great!

We also changed the subtitle. After much criticism on our previous choice 'Wizard of Booze'. The games subtitle is now 'Cursed Kingdom'. It fits nicely and we hope this is something more convenient for everybody :-)

What do you think?
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