N++ on the move

Hello again! We have good news for all you N++ fans out there — your patience is finally starting to be rewarded. We’re at a point where we can start to unveil N++ to the world, which is exciting. The game is pulling together, and it’s looking and feeling really great.

Wish you could play it too? Well good news! We have an early demo that shows off the new graphics, colours, enemies and a few other things. There’s still plenty more to come, but if you’re chomping at the bit, this will help tide you over until the final release.

If you’re in Kyoto, Japan, March 7-9, come and visit us at BitSummit. (We’ll have some super special limited edition N++ merch available too!)

If you’re in San Francisco March 17-21, you can play the game at Sony’s booth at GDC. We’d love to hear what you think!

(Also: if you’re a journalist and you’d like to play a demo privately at BitSummit or GDC, or you’d like to do an interview, please email us at metanet AT metanetsoftware DOT com.)

 

In the meantime, let’s take a look at the game in-progress. For those of you who have no idea what this N++ thing is all about, take a look at this post over on the PlayStation blog: http://blog.us.playstation.com/2014/02/28/what-is-n-an-intro-to-the-ps4-action-platformer/

We’ve just updated the N++ website with some early screenshots.

One of our goals with N++ is to ensure the game looks beautiful and intriguing in screenshots, and (as evidenced by previous blog posts) we’ve put a lot of thought and effort into the graphics.

As players of N and N+ know, screenshots haven’t always done the game justice — the magic really happens when the ninja is in motion. For N++ we really wanted to try to express some of that magic in the stills as well. Good news: it’s working!

We still have lots of tweaks to make, and plenty of things to add to the graphics, but these screenshots are a proof of concept: the minimalist art style perfectly suits N++, and the colour schemes are looking gorgeous. And the effects! In motion they really come to life, but even static they look stunning.

Speaking of which, keep an eye on the N++ tumblr, ’cause we’re going to be posting a handful of animated gifs of some of the effects.

For 4 whole seconds of N++ gameplay footage, you can also check out this brand new N++ Gameplay Teaser Trailer: http://vimeo.com/selfawareproductions/gameplayteaser Not enough for you? Don’t worry, there will be plenty more gameplay footage forthcoming!

We have to say, N++ feels like butter, if butter somehow ran at 60fps. It’s so smooth, so precise — controlling the ninja feels absolutely fantastic. You just fly through the air, nimbly darting around levels, deftly manipulating speed and momentum and making it look easy. It’s glorious. And very addictive! We’re starting to spend more and more time playing, even after hours. The new entities are awesome — you are going to love them. We’ll have more detail on them soon.

So what’s next? Well, there’s still a lot to do — what we have in the demo build is the foundation, the core of this game. There are several more layers to add before it’s finished and polished, but we’re very happy with how N++ is coming together. You’ve got a little more waiting to do, but we think you’ll be glad when it’s done — this game is going to rock.

22 Responses to “N++ on the move”

  1. innuendo says:
    February 28th, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    Why would you ps4 only? Why would you not do pc? I can’t express my sadness in words.

  2. M&R says:
    February 28th, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    @innuendo: one of the main reasons we’re making N++ is because Nick Suttner at Sony kept asking us to make it… it probably wouldn’t have happened without his encouragement, so that’s one big reason.

    Also, with only 3 people working on the game, it seemed wise to pick our fights and try to keep things as simple as possible — thus, making it for a single platform first to be sure that we’re doing it right.

    We’re really sorry for disappointing fans who don’t have access to a PS4.

    As we’ve mentioned in the past, depending on how it’s received, we will definitely look at porting it to other platforms, but for now we’d prefer to just focus on the PS4 version until it’s great.

  3. Jesse says:
    February 28th, 2014 at 6:12 pm

    Ugh I could not be more excited about this game. I have been a loyal player since N and have beat every level you have released.

    I’m curious though, why the departure from the iconic and minimalist background of the levels. They used to be white and now they seem all kinds of colors. I understand you maybe want to set it apart from the older N games but it seems like it would become annoying when you have to play levels literally hundreds of times. Just seems like a drastic change. I don’t want to question your choices though because I have always loved your artistic choices. Just curious what made you depart from the iconic white background?

    Also, I’m sure you can’t/won’t be able to answer this yet but do you have a set price for the game yet? Or even a price range?

    Thank you for all your guys hard work. I can’t wait for this game!

  4. M&R says:
    February 28th, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    @Jesse: re: the colours, that’s a really good question! (and thank you, we’re really glad that at least one person other than us thinks that simple can be beautiful)

    To be honest when the graphic designer we worked with (MASA) tried to convince us to try different colours, we refused for exactly the reasons you listed — we have always been concerned about playability, and we think that an important aspect of N has always been to make the gameplay/feel most important and have the graphics serve that.

    However, we did grudgingly try it, and we found that it actually worked pretty well. So, we’re trying it.

    We’re still working on the colours, but making sure that they’re just as functional as the original is a big priority for us.

    One thing we’ve discovered is that reaction to the colours seems to be very subjective. So, we’re trying a range of stuff in the hopes that there will be at least a couple sets of colours that you like.

    If you’re a real stickler, please know that Raigan is our resident stickler and definitely has your side covered — there should be at least one set of colours based on the original colours in case you find that to be the most playable/palatable option.

    About price: we have no idea yet. We haven’t really had time to have a meeting/discussion about it, we have definitely got that on a list somewhere of things we will one day get around to, however we just want to get the game done-ish before worrying about things other than getting the game done-ish (and occasionally writing blog posts).

    I suspect we’ll be doing some other videos or something to announce more details as they come.

    Anyway, thanks so much for your comment — it’s really awesome to have people who care enough to talk to us about it!

    In case the above ramblings are too rambly: we definitely hear you and agree that it would be a shame to harm the core of the game. Later trailers might showcase other aspects of the game, perhaps one of them will be the traditional colours to assuage this very reasonable concern.

  5. wizard_amul says:
    February 28th, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    We finally get to see a little bit of gameplay! It looks good. I too preferred the original style of black and white way back with the original N, but I understand why you want color and I agree that it looks good in color, too. I really hope you don’t end up going with anything as bright as the upper left photo on the website, though–hot pink and bright/neon colors are irritating to many people’s eyes.

  6. qG-Yd0oW says:
    March 1st, 2014 at 2:48 am

    I have a question, as me and a few other speedrunners are obsessed with leaderboards and beating each others times, i was a top player at N+, and i was wondering whether its going to be done in chapters again? For example 5 levels = 1 leaderboard or is it going to be an individual leaderboard for each level. Thanks.

  7. M&R says:
    March 1st, 2014 at 10:09 am

    @wizard_amul: the brighter colours will definitely be optional.

    @qG-Yd0oW: the leaderboards will be be level-by-level, however there will also be a leaderboard which tracks sets of 5 (but this will just be the sum of the 5 individual level scores).. we had to do it in groups of 5 on XBLA because there was a limit to the number of leaderboards allowed at once :)

    We’re still working on the leaderboards, so please let us know what you think/if you have any thing you really liked or hated about N+.

  8. Pai says:
    March 1st, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Good luck M&R sounds like things are progressing well – is it wrong that that I want to spend a good amount of money on a PS4 just for N!?!

  9. qG-Yd0oW says:
    March 2nd, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    N+ was amazing, there were only 2 minor problems, “half jumps” which is when occasionally when your jumping it would do half of a full jump, and the other was the ability to cover up top replays by simply replaying the chapter… Neither really an issue to be fair, i really liked the idea of getting the gold coins to increase your time and everything about the game!

    Things that would be awesome additions:

    Being able to see the time you finished each individual level after completition so you can decide whether to restart for a better time.

    And a leaderboard for a hall of fame would be awesome! For example top player at singleplayer and top player at multiplayer :P for bragging rights! Thanks for your fast response!

  10. Gaxis says:
    March 2nd, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    Wow, finally a gameplay. The game is looking great, hope you guys release it soon.

    And i’m feeling something i can’t describe about the graphics. They looks beautiful and better than the previous games, but somehow they are looking inferior than the N. I do not quite know how to describe, but is this.

    And i hope you guys release the game for PC, the PS4 is too expensive here, so i can’t buy one, at least not for a few years.

    Good luck with the game.

  11. thebritisharenotcoming says:
    March 7th, 2014 at 11:17 am

    This is how far you guys are currently? I was told this was gonna come out in the winter…. I gotta say, I’m slowly becoming less excited for this.

  12. Zapmeister says:
    March 8th, 2014 at 3:48 pm

    what ever happened to the long-awaited bugfix for n v2? please tell me you’re working on this…

  13. raigan says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 4:07 am

    @zapmeister: yes; I think we may have mentioned this before, but Golden Gear (who did all the front-end stuff) will be working on that as soon as they have a couple days.. we haven’t forgotten!

  14. Johan1996 says:
    March 20th, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Why isn’t there any gameplay yet? Since the game was playable this week I thought there would be a bunch of gameplay

    I just can’t wait for the release..

  15. Hairy Cabbage says:
    March 22nd, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    Man I feel so sad after watching the gameplay footage on polygon. Knowing that I wont be able to play the sequel to my number 1 favourite game on the 360.

    Hopefully this game will come to the XBLA/Xbox One (preferably Xbox One) in the future. Until then I will be stuck watching videos.

    P.s. hey woody, hows it going. Look forward to destroying your times if it does eventually come to xbox. ;)

  16. M&R says:
    March 24th, 2014 at 10:35 am

    @Johan1996: It’s only in alpha, so there’s a lot still to do with respect to UI, game modes, level order etc, much of which will affect how the game looks, which is why we haven’t officially released much footage yet — there may be some more video floating around from GDC and Bit Summit you can look for, but we too will release a bunch between now and when the game is done.

    @Hairy Cabbage: …which will only make you more sad. Sorry in advance!

  17. M&R says:
    March 24th, 2014 at 6:12 pm

    @Pai: thanks! :)

    @qG-Yd0oW: yes, we were never able to reproduce the half-jumping bug.. we still have no idea what was happening. Luckily rewriting everything fixed it ;)

    @thebritisharenotcoming: it was supposed to be a launch title! The level-sharing/editor and multiplayer are taking a lot longer than anticipated, mostly due to a lot of UI/menu work… menus are pretty hard to do right, and quite time-consuming to implement. We’re working as fast as we can.. we want it to be done too, but we want to make sure we do the best job possible.

  18. Johan1996 says:
    March 25th, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    I’ve seen some gameplay and I got to say that it looks awesome, really excited for it :D
    Will it release this spring? Or do you not know yet?

    If only I could play a demo of it, that’d be awesome :)

  19. Hairy Cabbage says:
    March 30th, 2014 at 10:12 am

    @M&R: Are you saying that N++ will never be making its way to an Xbox console or that watching videos will make me more sad? hopefully the latter…

  20. M&R says:
    March 30th, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    @Hairy Cabbage: a bit of both, but mostly the latter. We have no xbone-related plans atm — we’re having a hard enough time getting it done for one platform!

    But we hope that you’ll like the videos/etc. we’re planning… even if they do make you sad a bit :)

  21. Rez says:
    May 3rd, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    WHEN WILL THIS GAME BE RELEASED?! ugh been waiting forever! At least give us a release date…

  22. M&R says:
    May 5th, 2014 at 8:34 am

    @Rez: Thanks, we’re glad you’re excited! The most accurate thing we can say right now is: it’ll be released when it’s done. We want this game to be great, and have a few things left to tweak and figure out — when we finally announce a release date, it’ll be because we’re sure we can get the game to you on that date, and we’re sure it’ll be awesome. Hopefully we’ll have more news soon!

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