Seriously, where did the time go? It seemed like 2019 flew by…
It was a busy year for us, full of big milestones and big changes. Metanet Software celebrated our 15th anniversary this year (details in this blog post), a landmark achievement in a tumultuous industry. We did a long retrospective in that linked blog post, which you should definitely check out, if only for the at-times-hilarious gallery of photos from then till now 😉 It was also the 15th anniversary of the first versions of N, which you can find out more detail about here: https://www.thewayoftheninja.org/n_history.html Although we can’t believe it’s been 15 years already, we’re looking forward to (at least) 15 more!
Because of the success we had showing it at BitSummit many years ago, we think the Japanese market will appreciate a game like N++ — getting it there was a huge goal that we are so elated to have finally accomplished. And so far, it’s going well! We need to spread the word more, but it’s so exciting to see people in Japan streaming our game! 😀 Thank you to Blitworks, Tatham, Kahori and especially 8-4, who did the excellent localization work, and who are such good people in general. There was some amazing coverage in Famitsu, as well, which was a lifelong dream come true for us. That we have been able to do so much of what we set out to with N++ is just awesome, and we are super happy to have made it this far!
The other big news is that we made some huge and difficult decisions, and embarked on a brand new adventure in 2019, deciding to leave Toronto (the city we love and have lived in for our entire adult lives) for another: Montreal. Toronto is a wonderful city that was becoming too expensive for us to live and work in, and having finally finished the bulk of the work on N++, it was a good time for a change. Montreal is a vibrant city rich in the arts, and we think it will be very inspiring. Plus we can probably get a lot done during the long, cold winters 😉
The move was very time-consuming and quite stressful, as is leaving our home province, friends and family (we do have many friends here in Montreal as well, since there is also a thriving video game scene here), so that took a lot of our time and energy. But we are excited about the new experiences, opportunities, and spaces we’re moving into, and we’re determined to make this one of the best decisions we’ve ever made. Here are some photos of our new office — we’re still unpacking and setting up a little, but we’ve got the design library assembled, new really cool light hung, conference table at the ready and desks and computers set up. Incidentally, before we left Toronto, we cut down our book collection a little, but during the move we learned we still have a literal tonne of books (2,000+ lbs total) in our design library! Wow! that was a surprise. We’re so proud of our design library though, so it was well worth the effort — these books are such fantastic sources of inspiration, hand-picked from all over the world! <3
Back to the world of N++: We have to give huge congratulations to our 7 (!!!) 100%-ers, you are all incredible players and we honestly didn’t think anyone would EVER 100% the game (which is why we put that line in the trailer, haha — you win, everyone! We’ve never been happier to be wrong 😀 ), and yet here we are with 7 people having accomplished that gargantuan task, and with several others currently in a battle to complete the last few challenges! The average time for 100% completion was about 1000 hours — we are awed that some players have achieved this. It’s amazing, and humbling, and we are so thrilled that you enjoy N++ so much. With heartfelt sincerity, thank you all for playing.
To all those trying to reach this goal — please let us know when you do, either on the discord or by email! We have mailed out signed, hand-printed certificates (see this blog post for details) to the first 7, and we will send out one to you as well, whenever you get there. Good luck!
And now for an N++ news lightning round!
- For those of you who have been asking, we’ve put a few copies of the Super Rare physical edition of N++ on Switch up for sale in our Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/metanet
- Paolo Gazola (@Gazo1a on twitter and instagram) made some pretty awesome fan art!
- BanjoDave sent us this image of the multitude of levels he’s created this year — WOW! that’s prolific! and stylish! 😉
- We’ve been Featuring levels made and curated by the N++ community in the game and showing them off over on tumblr, so check them out if you’re interested in what the best and brightest have to offer — from the Main Menu of any version of N++, just go to Browse, and choose the “Featured” tab.
- And finally, the N++ community has been documenting their completion timeline for the game, so feast your eyes and also be sure to join that discord if you have info to share:
In other news, we’ve started a new tradition, currently in its second year: Raigan is once again acting as “Santa Paus” to give away 25 copies of Michael Brough’s underrated gem, Cinco Paus! Keep an eye on Raigan’s twitter on December 25th if you want a copy of this excellently designed strategy/puzzle game.
So what’s next for us, you may be wondering?
We have a few things in the pipeline, and a few more up our sleeves — we’re still not quite ready to announce anything yet, but we are so excited to prepare things to show you in 2020.
Having said that, we are aware that making games is pretty frivolous. It’s so hard to write these posts, trying to be optimistic and forward-looking about what we do, when the world is more and more a dumpster fire of hate and destruction and apathy. Thinking about what we can actually do about that is constantly on our minds, and the only thing we know for sure is that we all have to keep fighting for what we believe in and for the future we want to see, and to keep holding on to hope. Please be kind to each other and figure out what and how you can give back — we are all in this together. Except for the fascists. Fuck them.
Happy Holidays, all, we hope your lives are warm and full of love. Let’s work to make 2020 a huge improvement on 2019!