Category Archives: marblemedia

Spladder

Untold Entertainment was commissioned by marblemedia, one of our preferred clients, to create a game for Splatalot! Splatalot! is a kid-targeted mash-up of American Gladiator and Japanese obstacle course game shows like Most Extreme Elimination Challenge. The program airs on YTV in Canada, on BBC in the UK and on ABC in Australia.

The second segment of Splatalot! has the contestants assembling a ladder to escape a pit, while the adult Defenders (think “Gladiators”) shoot goop at them. marblemedia called the game Spladder (splat + ladder – you see?). They wanted a more puzzle-oriented game than the catapult and obstacle-based games in the show’s suite, so we built the fun puzzle platformer game that you see above, in the style of Abe’s Oddysee or Lost Vikings.

Lost Vikings

(What ever happened to the Lost Vikings developer? Meh – probably faded into obscurity.)

It’s Been a Slice

We used the Citrus Engine to build Spladder. It’s a framework of classes that speed up platform game creation. Citrus uses Box2D for its physics bodies. It gives you some great customizable character control and a level editor out of the box. The engine wasn’t quite set up to handle tiled platforms (in the examples, every platform is a discrete art asset) – strong-arming that to work was probably the most challenging aspect of development. That, and the level editor eventually became more of a hindrance than a help, to the point where i wound up hand-coding most of the levels in xml. The latest version of Citrus Engine drops the level editor so that you’re free to use your own solution.

Citrus Engine Logo

Juicy.

The art and animation in Spladder are by veteran Canadian kids’ game artist Elizabeth de Fazio, who was an absolute joy to work with. marble’s Johnny Kalangis and i hammered out story details together to build an enjoyable game that we’re quite proud of. i hope you like it!

Best Ed – Hedge Your Bets!

Hedge Your Bets! is one of two games that we developed (the other one being Crossing Dog) with kids’ teevee producer marblemedia, for 9Story Entertainment‘s cartoon show Best Ed. Hedge Your Bets! is loosely based around an episode where Ed and Miss FluffĂ© the hamster/fortune teller get “stranded” in a small grove of trees in the middle of a populated playground.

marblemedia asked us to create a maze game using assets from 9Story’s repository. Since the show was animated in Flash, all of the assets were .fla files. We had an absolute blast diving into the repo and choosing from so many gorgeous art and animation assets. We had researched mazes a few years back and learned that it’s a fairly simple thing to train an AI player to solve a certain type of maze. Since then, we’ve always wanted to build a maze game where you race an AI player to the exit. This project was our chance to build that exact game!

marblemedia took care of the title screen, HUD and audio assets for the game. Best Ed currently airs on Cartoon Network TOO in the UK, pan-European Cartoon Network, and on ABC in Australia.

(note: the High Scores functionality at the end of the game is tied to the broadcaster, and has been disconnected for this standalone version)

Best Ed – Crossing Dog

Crossing Dog is one of two games that we developed (the other one being Hedge Your Bets) with kids’ teevee producer marblemedia, for 9Story Entertainment‘s cartoon show Best Ed. Crossing Dog the game is loosely based around an episode of the same name.

marblemedia asked us to create a Frogger-like game using assets from 9Story’s repository. Since the show was animated in Flash, all of the assets were .fla files. We had an absolute blast diving into the repo and choosing from so many gorgeous art and animation assets. In the Crossing Dog episode, Ed wears a hat, sash and whistle. Since we couldn’t find enough run cycle rotations of Ed in that costume, we dreamed up a scenario where Ed had lost his whistle and can’t stop the cars, so he has to carry each kid safely to the other side of the street. It’s a slightly bent concept that meshes nicely with the off-kilter, Eek! the Cat-style humour of the show.

marblemedia took care of the title screen, HUD and audio assets for the game. Best Ed currently airs on Cartoon Network TOO in the UK, pan-European Cartoon Network, and on ABC in Australia.

(note: the High Scores functionality at the end of the game is tied to the broadcaster, and has been disconnected for this standalone version)