Fifteen years in the making

15 years ago, this week, I bought myself a Sony F500i for my birthday… and to my surprise it could run silly little Java games! Even bigger surprise, all the tools to create these games were free! Java, a simple text editor, and any art program was enough to make it work !


(screenshot of the first ever commercial game I made: Smash Dizzy)

I learned the tools (my first venture in the Java language) and wrote my first game for my phone within 4 weeks (not my first game ever, but first game for phones and with the idea of releasing+selling it). So I looked into how games got distributed on mobile phones.

In those days it was pretty much done like Flash games: thousands of distribution sites, hundreds of “distributors” (we’d call them publishers now I guess). I started signing contracts with most of the distributors I could find.. I had no idea what I was doing :D

I jumped every day I had a sale, which was pretty much 1 sale per day.. and probably made me $0.10 – $0.30 cents .. those were the days! I decided to give it a real go, and started working on more games, finding more distributors and putting in a LOT of hours full-time.

I registered Orangepixel as a Dutch company, and started pumping out games at almost a monthly rate. Games in those days were small, literally and figuratively.. the trick was cramming all the levels, graphics and 1 midi file of sound into 64kb JAR files.

I learned to support as many mobile devices as possible (every device/manufacturer had their own version of Jave2ME installed.. no two devices worked based on a standard at all). Over the years I did project work for big and small companies, and moved over to Smarthpones in 2009


First ever Smartphone game: Mechanics:Touch! – a Lemmings like puzzle game

Biggest mistake was missing out on the iPod/iPhone craze in 2007-2009; I just “didn’t get it”. Made up for all that by including iOS releases from 2011 onwards. Started including PC games in 2015 and even got some games ported to 3DS and Ps Vita!


Been releasing 1,2 or 3 games a year since, with Gunslugs:Rogue Tactics (orangepixel.net/gunslugs3) being my latest …and it BOMBED badly.. unlike any of my previous games, due to various reasons..

but more on that in a vlog soon!

 

Next game Space Grunts 2 is about to launch:orangepixel.net/spacegrunts2 let’s hope it’s literally not my last tho! :) but! been a great ride so far, I never expected this to be such a long career.. and I should do a vlog on that also.. ;) https://www.youtube.com/orangepixelmobile for weekly vlogs

(this was originally posted as Twitter Thread right here).

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