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Epic Games Author Info Pack - Vince Cavin web

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Epic Games Author Info Pack - Vince Cavin web

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  2. 2. Contents A b o u t E p i c M e g a G a m e s 1 Marketing, Distribution and PR Why Work With Epic What Epic Looks for in Programmers, Developers, Artists and Musicians H o w t o S u b m i t Y o u r W o r k 7 J o i n i n g t h e E p i c T e a m 8 Appendix A: Suggestions for Artists on Creating Animation by Nick Stadler Appendix B: Guidelines for Making Soundtracks in your Epic Game b y A l e x a n d e r B r a n d o n 1 3 A p p e n d i x C : A b o u t t h e G a l a x y M u s i c S y s t e m 1 6 Appendix D: Tips for Successful Shareware Game Development 19 A p p e n d i x E : L i s t i n g o f E p i c P r o d u c t s 2 1 A p p e n d i x F : A w a r d s , R e v i e w s a n d K u d o s 2 2 C o n t a c t i n g E p i c M e g a G a m e s 2 3 A u t h o r I n f o P a c k C r e d i t s 2 3 Contents
  3. 3. About Epic MegaGames Epic MegaGames is a leading publisher of cutting-edge computer games. Our top goals are to develop software that pushes PC technology to new limits, to achieve very high levels of customer satisfaction, and to be recognized as a revolutionary new-technology and quality leader in computer games. History Epic was established in 1991 by Tim Sweeney, the designer and programmer of the ZZT series and Jill of the Jungle, and the lead programmer for Unreal. What was to become Epic MegaGames began as a hobby while Tim was studying mechanical engineering at the University of Maryland. That was during the early days of shareware when games comprised only a small share of the software market. Epic's first two releases, ZZT and Super ZZT, were successful enough to fund sales for the company's next project, Jill of the Jungle. By early 1992, several people had joined up with Tim to form Epic's first design team. Working part-time on Jill, late into the night and on weekends, the team strived to build a top-notch game. Their efforts paid off! In June of 1992, Jill was released and Epic began its rapid growth toward worldwide recognition as a leader in shareware games. Since then, products like Epic Pinball have smashed Jill's sales records and set new standards for Epic's success. Today, Epic is making new technological as well as quality breakthroughs with games like Unreal. Our development teams have grown to encompass more than 50 people worldwide, and we have a highly-qualified, growing office staff to serve our customers and manage Epic's business operations. Epic's shareware success is still growing, and we're now branching out in new directions by expanding our development efforts into the retail market as well. Epic Growth and Change In the last six years. Epic has built up tremendous resources for developing, publishing, and distribut ing games. Recently, we have reached out into uncharted territory, moved from BBSs to the Internet, changed development platforms from DOS to Windows 95, and embraced the retail market. Even in a market becoming more saturated. Epic continues to have great success with its shareware distribution and direct sales. For games which we license to retail companies. Epic's authors still make a large portion of their profit from Epic's direct sales. Marketing, Distribution and PR Shareware Marketing Strategy Shareware is a unique way of marketing software. It needs to be approached with a good strategy to be profitable. The Epic MegaGames strategy is clear, simple, and works extremely well: We make shareware successful by giving potential customers an excellent, complete, top-quality product for FREE—then we sell them MORE of what they want: more excellent, complete, top-quality products. This simple strategy has played a major role in Epic's success—that is why a top Epic game can bring in over 100 orders per day, while most other shareware typically gets a few orders per week. Most shareware fails to sell because most shareware authors don't know how to use positive marketing— but we do, and this awareness has brought us a great deal of success. Most authors fail in that they do not make their potential customers happy. If they provide potential customers with any means of sampling what they have to offer at all, it is usually in the form of limited, scaled-down versions of their games which frequently lead to more frustration and boredom than enjoyment. This isn't likely to inspire anyone to want to place an order. To make our potential customers happy, we GIVE them great shareware games—fully working, top-quality products that they can play and enjoy for free. Our potential customers, having greatly enjoyed the shareware versions of our games, are eager to order more of the product that made him happy in the first place. Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 1
  4. 4. Our next step is to sell them something. We do this by offering MORE games, game levels, and game extras: hint sheets, cheat codes, bonus game disks, and more. These extras are incentives for our customers to order. Other shareware authors fail because: • They cripple their products. For example, a game without a "save" feature—you have to register if you want to save your game. This fails because customers end up being mad at the author instead of appreciative and eager to order more. • They don't offer any incentives to customers. Amazingly, many shareware authors basically say: "If you like this program, please register it by sending $30. You will receive the latest version of the program and the author's gratitude." But what are they selling? For $30, the customer will receive something he already has! This is not an incentive for ordering—you need to sell them something they do not have, and would like to have. Epic's games sell so well in shareware because: • We give customers great, fully-working software for FREE for them to enjoy, which puts them in a good mood—they like us and they trust us, so they are glad to do business with us. • We sell them something they want to buy: More games, game levels, hint sheets, cheat codes, bonus games, etc. Customers love this stuff! Many of our games are trilogies—a three-volume series of games. We give away part one as shareware, and we sell parts two and three. Yes, we have to work harder to create three episodes of a game, but it pays off. Customers love the first episode of our games, and are happy to order the other episodes from us. To summarize, our customers are what ultimately make shareware profitable. By giving them the best, top-quality games, we have the opportunity to sell them more great games and bonuses—by keeping the customers happy, and wanting more, we'll stay successful. The Changing Face of Shareware Distribution Although the elements that make a successful shareware game have changed little over time, share ware distribution has changed dramatically since Epic's infancy. In the past. Epic games were distributed via Bulletin Board Systems (BBSs), shareware magazines, and in retail by anyone who could put the games on store shelves (companies such as Titanium Seal, Gold Medallion, MicroStar and many other smaller shareware distributors). Now that BBSs are no longer an efficient means of distribution, and the computer gaming market has become much more competitive, we've had to find new ways to help our shareware games reach potential customers. Recently, Epic has chosen to work exclusively with larger retail distributors for quality distribution of our shareware games. Epic has signed deals with companies such as The B&N Companies and LaserSoft for domestic shareware distribution in retail stores. These companies not only get the games into computer software stores, but also into other retail outlets like department stores, drug stores and discount stores. Getting greater distribution to the general public, as opposed to only hard-core gamers, is an impor tant step in keeping Epic's direct sales strong. Epic does its best to get the shareware to as many people as possible, which usually involves making [royalty-based] retail deals for the shareware version with a local company as well as several international distributors who normally carry our full, registered products. In addition to retail channels. Epic promotes distribution of its shareware games via online services and the Internet, on cover disks of major gaming magazines, and any other place where game demos can be found. Due to massive shareware distribution, the Epic name is known by millions of game players and computer users. For proof, ask ten of your friends if they've heard of Epic MegaGames, Epic Pinball, Jazz Jackrabbit, One Must Fall, or Unreal. 2 Epic MegaGames Author Into Pack
  5. 5. Full-Version Retail Distribution Epic has started teaming up with larger retail companies for wider distribution in the retail market. Although less money is made per unit on the product in retail, the product reaches thousands more potential customers than it could through online shareware distribution alone.Advances on royalties from retail deals often help fund larger projects that Epic would not otherwise be able to support. Two factors help Epic make deals that benefit the developers and do not give away all rights and control to the retail distributor. The first is the experience Epic has gained over the years while working with companies like Microleague, Electronic Arts, GT Interactive, and Spectrum Holobyte. We've learned which rights to keep and which ones to give up; what kind of retail advances and royalties make up for the subsequent decrease of direct sales due to the product being distributed in retail stores; and many more intangible details about the deal-making process. The second factor is that Epic has a track record for being able to produce high-quality, cutting-edge games from start to finish. Quality games like Extreme Pinball, Fire Fight, and Unreal have paved the way for other Epic games to get excellent retail distribution deals with large advances and high royalties. International Distributors Epic has solid relationships with several top international distributors around the world. In the past, when Epic only distributed games online via the shareware model and through direct sales, international distributors were of primary importance in getting top-notch distribution around the world. Now, with some games being distributed under worldwide retail contracts and online distribution moving to the Internet, the focus on Epic's international distribution may seem to have decreased. Still, we have good relationships with many distributors around the world and when the opportunity arises, they're glad to distribute (and pay advances on) the full/retail versions, shareware versions, and/or any other special limited editions. Epic has an office in England, and works with the top international shareware distributors in other territories such as Germany/Europe, Japan, Korea, Australia, and rising stars in several other countries. Low-Cost Retail Epic has worked with and established relationships with several companies specializing in low-cost retail, such as the B&N Companies, Wizard Works, and LaserSoft. These companies can often aid in retail distribution of LE versions, shareware, third-party add-ons, and even full versions of older games, getting the products into stores such as Walmart and drug stores, as well as mainstream computer and game stores. Online Distribution Since shareware's success is heavily dependent upon online distribution, whether via BBSs or the Internet, Epic is always on the cutting edge of the online world. The Internet has proven much more vast and harder to be heard on than the BBS scene of yesteryear, but Epic has some key partners and plans to stay atop the online gaming world. CompuServe: Epic has had an online forum on CompuServe for several years, and Epic games are available for purchase online. Games small enough to download (all but the CD-only games) can be purchased and downloaded immediately, and all games can be ordered online and shipped from Epic headquarters. America Online: AOL is the world's largest online service. Epic uploads it shareware games to AGL's gaming forum where they are downloaded by thousands of gamers the world over. Epic's Online & Web Ordering: Epic has been receiving orders by e-mail for some time now and has also begun taking orders over its secure Web site. Ordering via the secure Web site has quickly become one of our biggest sales avenues, and it has been bolstered by the monthly specials we promote on the site. Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 3
  6. 6. CINet: CINet is one of the few sites that really stands out on the Internet. It is one of the Web's largest and most visited sites and contains information pertaining to a range of interests, including everyday news and industry news. Many of Epic's games can be purchased and downloaded directly via CINet. At Once Software: One of Epic's key partners,At Once sells locked copies of Epic's games via various online sources, such as Buydirect.com, Happy Puppy and America Online. Online Gaming: With the soon-to-be-released Unreal, 7th Legion and Jazz Jackrabbit 2—both of which will feature Internet play—Epic games will be played over the Internet more than ever before. These releases, and future Net games, will strengthen Epic's presence on the Internet substantially, and open up new possibilities for the future of online gaming and distribution. OEM Bundling deals have been very successful both in getting wider distribution for Epic games and making a respectable profit in some cases. Epic games have been bundled in the past with hardware like Gravis gamepads, sound cards, modems, and Acer computers. Press Coverage With each hit it turns out. Epic gets more coverage in the press. Epic's games have been reviewed and featured in virtually all of the major computer magazines, including PC Gamer, Computer Gaming World, PC Games, PC Magazine, Compute!, and nearly a hundred other major and minor publica tions around the world. The Internet and Epic's Web Site The Internet and Epic's Web site have proven to be valuable marketing tools. Here, the public can access free demos, get information on upcoming releases, and find out more about their favorite games. Why Work With Epic Royalties Because of Epic's unique efficiency and marketing methods in shareware, we pay some of the best royalties in the industry. For games published via shareware, our development teams earn 40 percent of the total sales of the games they create. We call this the Development Team Royalty. Epic draws from the remaining 60 percent of the sales amount to cover the cost of promoting, advertising, distributing, selling the game, and doing business. Positive Name Recognition The ever-growing recognition of the Epic name is a benefit to Epic and its developers on a few levels. First, and most obviously, positive name recognition helps Epic sell games—it helps direct sales as well as retail sales (when the Epic logo is spotted on the game box), and is the reason why our customer base is continually growing. In addition, positive name recognition goes a very long way toward making successful deals—in particular, retail distribution deals. With Epic's reputation for being able to produce high-quality, cutting-edge games from start to finish, we're able to get much better deals in terms of advances, royalty rates and terms of the agreement (we don't give up rights that we don't want to) than develop ment teams would be able to get on their own. Project Support Financial Support: With a 60/40 royalty split. Epic is not able to finance many large projects that require lots of funding over a long period of development. However, Epic is always willing to help a team out however they can by sustaining them financially until their game is released, obtaining necessary equipment, etc. Though the numbers differ on each project. Epic has always invested significant amounts of money in developing almost every title. Of course, if a larger project makes it to the point where it can be shown to major retail distributors, these distributors are often willing to pay large advances to see that the game proceeds to completion in a timely manner. 4 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  7. 7. Development: Epic can often provide developmental support in means other than money. For example, Epic has several staff employees who may be deployed to a certain project that could use help in a particular area. Epic has also been known to hire additional artists or programmers for specific projects. In addition to staff, Epic can often obtain development tools (computers, hardware, software, etc.) at a significantly reduced price to pass on to its developers. Technology: Sharing of technology is another way Epic provides development support. Obviously, not all technology is shared, such as the source code for Unreal, but many tricks of the trade and optimizations are often discussed in Epic's online forums and e-mail discussions. In addition. Epic pays for the license to use the Galaxy Music System in its games. This top-notch sound system is used in all of Epic's recent games including Unreal, 7th Legion, Jazz 2, Age of Wonders and many others currently in development. For more information on Galaxy, refer to Appendix C: About the Galaxy Music System on page 16. Producers: Epic will also assign a producer to your project to make sure development continues smoothly and to aid the team by acting as a communication link between the team and the rest of Epic. The producer's job is to coordinate and organize information between developers, marketing, accountants, and operations. Basically, a producer helps in all aspects of project development, from concept to creation to release. A producer is the main contact between Epic and developers, and helps to provide them with everything they need to develop a successful product. For a breakdown of the producer's responsibilities, see Joining the Epic Team on page 8. Freedom and Input A major advantage of working with Epic is that the project always remains the developers'. The development team has the final say on the content and direction of the game, although the producer and retail publishers may try to guide your direction based on what sells in the market. Furthermore, not only do the development aspects remain under developer control, but Epic often allows developer input for advertisements, press releases, and marketing schemes, giving the developers even more say in the way their game is ultimately presented. No Relocation Needed When you're working with Epic, there are no geographical bounds. Authors from Finland, Holland, Canada, New Zealand, France, Germany, Poland and elsewhere have worked with us to create and publish successful games. We do a lot of work by telephone, over the Internet, and through occasional get-togethers in Rockville. Epic is always looking for top-notch developers—development teams or individuals. For Epic to be able to evaluate how talented you are, you must first submit samples of your work for evaluation. What Epic Looks for in Programmers, Developers, Artists and Musicians Programmers and Development Teams If you already have an Epic-quality game in the works or near completion, we can work with you to improve it, create a marketing and distribution strategy, and prepare it for release through Epic's channels. You'll benefit by getting in touch with us early in the development process. We've made quite a few successful games and we have some important tips and suggestions for making fun games, optimizing them, coordinating artwork and music, and developing them swiftly. If your game needs artwork or musical help, we can assist you by either putting an Epic staff artist on the project or matching you up with an independent artist or musician to join your development team. If you're not involved in a project currently, but you want to start one and you can show us that you've got what it takes, we can put you on a newly-forming development team. This is a great way to get started if you have talent, but want to work with others for game design, artwork, and music. Epic MegaGames Author info Pack 5
  8. 8. Artists As technology improves and games get bigger and better, the amount of time spent on art and animation per project increases tremendously. Epic has often found itself in need of good artists and, especially, animators. We're always on the lookout for talented artists and animators to help develop current and future projects. Our games in development include scrolling platform games, adventure games, strategy games, RPGs and first-person 3-D action games. We are looking for artists who posses the following skills/traits: • High-resolution artwork in Fractal Painter or Photoshop • Thorough knowledge of 2-D paint packages and 3-D modeling and/or animation and texture mapping skills • 3-D software experience, i.e.. Alias, 3-D Studio Max, Lightwave • Professional in attitude and work standards • Self motivated and quick to learn • Computer game players Musicians We are primarily looking for musicians with the following skills: • Experience with digital trackers (i.e.. Impulse Tracker, Fast Tracker II, Scream Tracker) • Capable of producing music of various styles—If you really excel in one area, that is to your benefit, but in order to be most easily placed on a project, talent in numerous styles helps greatly. • Professional in attitude and work standards With the rise of digital (tracked) music and Redbook music, MIDI is no longer in demand. However, if you're a truly exceptional MIDI or General MIDI musician, go ahead and send us some samples anyway—we may be able to put you to work or keep you in mind for the future. A Word About Quality Epic has been pushing the technological and gameplay envelope more and more with each release. With the advent of the Unreal engine. Epic has jumped to the forefront of technology. With this in mind, it is recommended that you only submit your work if it lives up to the standards set by Epic's latest releases. Even then, our recruiting department sometimes will not be able to take a project simply because we have something more promising (or conflicting) in development. A developer should endeavor to find the gaps in our, and the gaming industry's, technology and create a great game that fills those gaps. Doing so allows us to say, "Hey, they've really got something innovative here." For individual developers seeking a programmer, musician, or artist/animator position, make sure that your techniques are up to date and your work is top-notch. Epic needs the best developers to make first rate games. Epic has some requirements that all submissions must adhere to. Please make sure your demo is state- of-the-art and meets the following requirements before submitting it to Epic: • Native Windows 95 application which utilizes DirectX technology. We are no longer publishing DOS or Win3.x games. • Professional, high-resolution graphics. Almost every genre has moved to hi-res graphics (640x480 or better resolution), and many are now making the switch to 16-bit color, with MMX"^^ technology enhancements for 24- or 32-bit color quickly becoming a "must" as well. • Originality. All too frequently, we get "similar" or "duplicate" types of games submitted. Please try your best to make sure your game does not look or play exactly like another game out there. For the most part, 2-D platform games, 2-D shooters, and 2-D fighting games are dead. However, 6 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  9. 9. if you've got a truly exceptional game in one of these genres, please feel free to submit it anyway; a submission of this sort can reflect well on your team even if we're not interested in that particular project. • Test your game and make sure that most features work and the game doesn't crash often. If your demo has bugs, please note them, as well as any planned improvements, in a README.DOC. Submitting Ideas or a Project Design We often receive submissions of game ideas and design documents of potential products. While design documents can aid in evaluating the potential of a project in conjunction with a playable demo, they are not usually of any use alone. Furthermore, as Epic works primarily with independent developers, we are not interested in developing a game to someone else's specifications or script. We have been around long enough to know how to make great games, and we don't have the in-house staff to make other people's games/designs. We very much prefer to see a (playable) demo of your game and some artwork to get a feel for what the game is and where it's headed. This is becoming more and more important because Epic has become a technology-driven company. The core game is of course extremely important, but the technology implemented must be cutting-edge in order to get recognition in this hit-driven market. The exception is in the case that your are an experienced and proven development team seeking to license Epic technology (for example, the Unreal engine). In this case, a design document and your credentials and experience help us make the determination of whether or not to license the technology and/or publish the finished product. It is often to your advantage if your team is somewhat self sufficient though. A Note about Safari Software Safari Software is a small division of Epic MegaGames dedicated to publishing small but high-quality games. Our goal is to get Safari Software recognized as the leader in small, innovative shareware games, while building up Epic's position as a leading-edge company with the largest, highest-quality games around. Safari Software can offer a great opportunity for new authors who are completing their first major game. By working with Safari, authors can gain experience working with a top team to produce a great game. Safari games have high quality standards, which all authors must maintain. But, unlike Epic, Safari is very interested in smaller games—games which customers will enjoy very much, but games which don't have to be as large and complex as top Epic hits like Epic Pinball, Jazz Jackrab- bit, and One Must Fall 2097. Recently, we've found that, in this hit-driven market, only the top games are profitable to sell. So, unless we find some small, innovative, high quality game that really catches our eye, we do not plan to publish many games through Safari Software. How to Submit Your Work If you have never contacted Epic directly, the first thing you must do is send some information about yourself and some samples of your work—a prototype game, art samples, music, etc. A resume without samples will NOT be considered. Anything you send will remain confidential. Please send a variety of samples that showcase your range of talents. Put your files on one or more 3.5" PC disks. Zip disks, or PC CD-ROM (artists/animators can put their work on a VHS cassette; musicians can include a cassette tape or audio CD), put them in a padded envelope (please include a SASE for returns), and mail to: Epic MegaGames, Inc. Attn: Recruiting Department 3204 Tower Oaks Blvd., Suite 410 Rockville, MD 20852 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 7
  10. 10. Or, send your demo/samples to us over the Internet: You can FTP your submission to us by doing the following: PKZIP your submission with a password (use the -s option for the DOS version of PKZIP) and FTP your submission to ftp.epicgames.com, in the /incoming directory. Then, send e-mail to recruiting@epicgames.com, detailing the file name, description of the submission, and the password to uncompress the protected archive. You can also e-mail your submission. To do so, encode the password-protected ZIP archive (bin-hex or MIME are preferred, uuencode is also acceptable) and e-mail it to recruiting@epicgames.com. Leave the password in the message portion of your e-mail. Please don't e-mail files larger than 10 MB. If you have samples available for download on the Internet, or your own Web page showcasing your work, we can download them and check them out. Just send e-mail to recruiting@epicgames.com with the site (FTP address or URL, and login/password if necessary) where we can find and download these samples. Or, contact us via e-mail, Internet, or fax: Fax: (301) 299-3841 E-mail: recniiting@epicgames.com WWW: http://www.epicgames.com In any case, include a brief cover letter describing your work, your goals, and how to contact you. Getting a Response We'll get back to you as soon as we have a chance to look at your submission. We are often flooded with submissions, so it might take awhile. In general, the better your submission is, the sooner we'll get back to you. If you're turned down the first time, don't take it too hard. We receive hundreds of submissions every month. Rather, take it as a challenge to boost your work to the next level. Take some time to hone your skills, then resubmit your newer work. Almost all of the industry's successful people spent many years experimenting and learning before their first major hit. They just kept on trying and didn't give up. Still, sometimes we'll receive an exceptional submission, but have no immediate use for the developer (whether programmer, artist, or musician). In this case, we'll contact you and let you know that we like your work and will keep you in mind for future projects. Then, if you're still available when we have an opening, we'll contact you again. Joining the Epic Team Some developers come to Epic as a part of an existing team, and others come alone and join one of the existing teams which need their help. We're glad to work with new developers either way. If your work meets Epic's high standards, there's a good chance you'll be asked to work with Epic. Musicians, Artists, and Programmers If you're not already a part of a team, we'll try to place you on a team which could benefit from your skills. Artists are the easiest to place with teams because it's most apparent when an artist's style matches the game's mood or other game artists' styles. In any case, we'll usually give you a small "project" to work on as part of the game to make sure you'll fit in on the project in that team. Existing Development Teams If you're already part of an existing team working on a project who is seeking a publisher, Epic can publish your game and add a whole lot of value in other ways. We'll work with you to finish the project and get good distribution through shareware and retail channels. Working with Epic from Around the World Several development teams are now working with Epic to create leading-edge games. Teams and team members are spread around the world in the USA, Canada, the Netherlands, Finland, Germany, Poland, and New Zealand. We feel this is the way most software will be developed in the future—by hard-working, creative people spread around the world, communicating by phone, e-mail, online chat and the occasional in- 8 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  11. 11. person get-together. This way, developers are not limited by a commute to work every morning, and are free to create great software and add their own personal touches to it. The Publishing Agreement The Publishing Agreement is a contract that is signed between Epic and the members of every development team for a project. It outlines the responsibilities of each party and the royalty or payment structure. Realizing that the best way to keep people with Epic for many, many projects is to keep our authors happy, the Publishing Agreement is fair and unintrusive. Most importantly for you, it applies only to the game you develop for Epic, and it keeps your options open for the future. NOTE: Because Epic covers all markets in the USA and overseas, we do require worldwide exclusive marketing and distribution rights to games we publish. Royalties As mentioned in the Why Work with Epic section. Epic pays some of the highest developer royalties in the industry. On games published via shareware, our development teams earn 40 percent of the total sales of the games they create. The Development Team Royalty is split among the members of the development team according to a formula that is outlined in a game's Publishing Agreement. This split varies from project to project because games require differing amounts of programming, artwork, and other work. For a typical game, the split might be as follows: Programmer (55%), Artist (38%), Musician (7%). For most projects. Epic considers the amount of work to be done by each developer and the relative value of that work, and proposes a royalty structure. Development Team Formation Development team formation can begin in several ways. In the past, a project often began with a programmer's initial design and coding work. Then, everybody would spend a few weeks working together, brainstorming with ideas and plugging new art, music, and ideas into a game. The most common way to assemble a team now is for the designer to plan out a potential game design and framework and find skilled programmers, artists, and a musician to carry out his vision. Often the designer is a programmer, artist, or musician himself and has some actual work on the game com pleted beyond the design. Contracts are usually signed several months into the project, once everybody is comfortable working together, and a game plan is put together and being executed. To work in an environment like this, you really need to enjoy what you're doing and be self-moti vated. The most brilliant Epic games have come from this type of author, the author who works late into the night and cherishes the reward of seeing a creative new idea go from concept to reality. Producers Once your development team has signed the necessary paperwork, you'll need an Epic contact person. That contact person will be an Epic producer assigned to the project. The producer's job will be to coordinate and organize information between developers, marketing, accountants, and operations. The producer will also be responsible for the presentation of the project, human resources, production management, content contribution, budgeting, contracts, and scheduling. Here is the breakdown of the producers responsibilities: • Information Pivot Point: Keeps information flowing among development team members, market ing, accountants, operations, etc. • Presentation of Product: Helps development teams achieve the best presentation possible for all sales venues (retail, shareware, after-market, etc.). PR and marketing departments collaborate to develop a marketing strategy that suits the individual game. • Human Resources Management: Help locate and place developers with teams. Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 9
  12. 12. • Production Management: Keep development teams focused on the goal of creating awesome games in a timely manner. • Content Contribution: Although individual development teams have full creative control of their projects, the producer makes suggestions, critiques, and "points developers in the right direction" based on game, industry, and market analysis. • Budgeting: Keep track of, and arrange advances and payments to development teams. Estimate production costs, and look out for "the bottom line." • Contracts: Mediate contract negotiations between Epic and developers to keep issues reasonable and fair. • Scheduling: Develop a reasonable development time line and schedule materials creation (manuals, advertising, etc.). 10 Epic MegaGames Author Into Pack
  13. 13. Appendix A: Suggestions for Artists on Creating Animation by Nick stabler The following excerpt is from an article I wrote for the Epic MegaGames Author Newsletter shortly after completing the animation for the sprites and cinematics in our release, Jazz Jackrabbit. It's entitled "Suggestions for Artists on Creating Animation." I've volunteered it to you in hopes that some of you may find it helpful, or at least vaguely interesting and amusing. I'd like to make a few suggestions on doing animation, or, more specifically, CHARACTER anima tion, to any potential new artists coming into the Epic MegaGames fold. Many of you may be ex tremely skillful artists, skillful either at VGA computer art, or "real world" hand-drawn art. In some respects, you will need all of the skills you've learned in creating great animation, but for the most part you may have to begin by throwing a lot of your learned skills out the window and starting from scratch. The reason for this is that you may have already picked up bad habits in your figure drawing as you've been developing your style. One of the reasons I believe animation is such an important part of the artistic aspect of a game is this: I've seen plenty of games which have gorgeous graphics, but employ extremely awful animation. Artistically, this detracts tremendously from what would otherwise be a wonderful game. You may be able to make a beautiful drawing which will look wonderful in a screen shot, but you won't get the overall "feel" of the presentation from a graphic standpoint till it's put into motion. W h a t i s A n i m a t i o n ? That seems like a stupid question. Obviously, EVERYONE knows what "animation" is, right? Well, that depends on your approach to it, especially if you're the animator. You may think that animating is giving "motion" to an object. In a sense, I guess that's correct, but anybody can give an object MOTION. It takes very little skill to move an object. The thing that separates a skillful animator from just anyone is the aspect, or illusion, of LIFE. Your task as an ANIMATOR is to bring LIFE to something which has none. When you are talking about something which has life, you are talking about a character with personality, attitude, and motivations. It's very important to get to "know" the subject before beginning to animate him or her. What is his/her personality, attitude, motivation? And how do I bring those out in EVERY SINGLE DRAWING that I do? As an animator, you have to be more than an artist or a draftsman. You have to be an actor, a director, a puppeteer, and to some degree, a writer as well. You have to suspend your real world beliefs somewhat, and temporarily come to believe that your subject is "real" and that you aren't creating his actions but translating them. You may find yourself saying that stereotypical actor line: "But this character wouldn't DO that!" Believability is not all that outrageous of a concept for a video game character: if you can't suspend your beliefs in acknowledging the character's "existence," then how can you expect your audience to? The Pose The pose is the most important aspect of getting the character to exude the kinds of personality traits you want it to possess. You want to get all aspects of the character's anatomy in check, but you also want to put the right curves and angles in its stance. Is the character going to lean forward, arch back, droop downward, stand straight upward? If I make him stand a certain way, where will his weight shift, how will his legs be bent, what will his arms be doing? A common approach to finding whether a particular pose "works" or not is often referred to as the "silhouette test." What you would do is take the drawing and make a "mask" of the character so that all you will see is a dark, one color silhouette of the figure. If you can see clearly in the silhouette what exactly the character is doing, then chances are you have come up with a successful pose. My rule of thumb here is to push the characters pose to the extreme. The Drawings Start simply with a rough sketch (either by hand or by mouse) of the outline, or wireframe of the character. Try not to think of this outline as a two-dimensional drawing, but as a representation of a three-dimensional object. You should always be aware of what every limb and every joint of the Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 11
  14. 14. character is doing, even when that particular part of the body is hidden behind the character. Though that part may not be visible, it IS either affecting or being affected by the parts we do see. A r c o f M o t i o n Keep in mind when animating a character, that all motion should take place on an arc. Really, smooth animation is NOT always determined by the number of frames (although that helps), but by the proper ARG OF MOTION. The shortest distance between two points may be a straight line, but while animating, the straight line should be avoided at all times! If you animate a head turn or an arm movement along the path of a straight line, the motion will look stiff and robotic. IT WILL CONTINUE TO LOOK STIFF AND ROBOTIC NO MATTER HOW MANY IN-BETWEEN F R A M E S Y O U D R A W ! A c c e l e r a t i o n a n d D e c e l e r a t i o n The properties of acceleration and deceleration should also be considered while animating a figure. When you are doing "in-between" drawings between two "extreme" poses, remember that the movement will gradually pick up speed and gradually slow down. Don't Be Afraid to Break the Rules! Animation is a fantastic process, with many rules. But like all other art forms, these rules are not only breakable, they're ENCOURAGED to be broken! It's a continuous learning process if you allow yourself to be open to it. Some of your most joyous discoveries may be made through trial and error, your mistakes may be discoveries within themselves. So enjoy! -N.S. Books of interest: HOW TO ANIMATE FILM CARTOONS by Preston Blair, published by Walter Foster CARTOON ANIMATION by Preston Blair, published by Walter Foster ANIMATION FROM SCRIPT TO SCREEN by Shamus Culhane, St. Martin's Press THE ANIMATOR'S WORKBOOK by Tony White, Watson Guptill DRAWING ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE BRAIN by Betty Edwards, Tarcher Putnam Cartoon Animation specifically: CHUCK AMUCK by Chuck Jones, Avon Biography TEX AVERY KING OF CARTOONS by Joe Adamson OF MICE AND MAGIC by Leonard Malten REAL CARTOONS, editorial in Animation magazine by John Kricfalusi 12 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  15. 15. Appendix B: Guidelines for Making Soundtracks in your Epic Game by Alexander Brandon Choosing a System Before you can start thinking about what music you'd like to write for your game, you have to choose a system to play it with. There are three ways to go here: General MIDI, digital "tracked" music, or Redbook audio. Each system has its advantages and drawbacks: General MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) • Supports 128 Instruments • Must MIDI controller, such as a keyboard or guitar, to write the music • Instruments are supported on Wavetable and General MIDI cards • Special effects (like echo and flanging) are not necessarily supported on all sound cards • Songs take up about 20-50kb maximum Digital System (example: Galaxy) • Supports any number of instruments • Supports numerous effects such as vibrato and flanging • Supported by all digital sound cards (Sound Blasters compatibles) and cards with DSP chips • Songs usually take up about 100-600kb • Instruments are not readily available and must be sampled separately R e d b o o k A u d i o • Allows for the freedom to record music in a "traditional" manner, using any number of instru ments, synthesizers or sounds you want, as well as post-production editing. • Supported by any sound card with a standard CD-audio cable hooked to it. • Songs take up very large amounts of space and must be stored and played from CD-ROM. • Requires expensive recording equipment or access to a recording studio. Using a MIDI System The first method of music production for your PC, MIDI, is the worst method in terms of quality and flexibility, but the best in terms of saving memory and disk space. A MIDI music file only contains the instructions for playback —the sound samples themselves are stored in the sound card. For example, a SoundBlaster AWE32 uses an EMU 8000 series synthesizer with 128 General MIDI instruments stored in RAM memory. The samples can be edited and changed, but not very easily since they are in a format specific to the card. In order to write MIDI music, you need to use a MIDI-capable keyboard that connects to your sound card's joystick port via a MIDI adapter (available at most retail computer hardware stores), and a software sequencer such as Cakewalk Pro or Cakewalk Pro Audio (with the ability to mix WAV files and MIDI instruments for songs). If you are working on a specific game title, you must decide which system to use to incorporate MIDI music into your game. There are many systems, most of which are pretty old and outdated, such as the original HMI which has been used since Origin released "Wing Commander." However, times have changed and companies are stepping up their standards. For cards which do not support General MIDI, such as Sound Blaster 1.0/2.0, Sound Blaster Pro and Sound Blaster 16s, the only music support available is in the form of FM sound, as we are used to hearing so often in older games. The only MIDI system which takes full advantage of FM sound is the "Loudness" sound system programmed by Andreas Molnar in Germany. Epic's Tyrian uses the Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 13
  16. 16. Loudness system with success and has gotten good response. The Loudness system supports nine channels for music and eight channels for digital sound effects. For information on Loudness, contact Andreas Molnar at: 100333.3431@compuserve.com Once you have the MIDI system of your choice, simply make MID flies using a synthesizer (recom mended synths are the Roland JW-30 and the Korg OlAV series) and a sequencer such as Cake Walk Pro for Windows 95. The total cost of such a system starting from scratch can reach a few thousand dollars, however. So unless you are already using General MIDI, I would suggest going with a digital system, since the cost is much less. Using a Digital System Digital music has been used since around 1990 when the Commodore Amigas began supporting games with four-channel digital music. Such old greats as Shadow of the Beast by Psygnosis and Lemmings (by the same company) had excellent soundtracks when IBM machines were using tinny Adlib FM sounds. Compare the Amiga and PC versions of the Bullfrog hit Populus and you'll instantly hear the difference. Though digital sound is high quality, there is a high price to pay. Songs can take up to a megabyte or more of space because the instruments are actually contained within each song and loaded into memory when the song plays. MIDI soundtracks, on the other hand, can be hours long and not take up more than 50k, since all of the instruments are contained on the card itself and songs only contain the information needed to play them. Writing MODs with trackers can also be annoyingly hard to learn. For now, e-mail me at alec@citcom.net and I'll answer any questions you might have about using ScreamTracker or Fasttracker. (A full tutorial on ScreamTracker and Fasttracker will follow and be mailed to all interested parties.) However, if you learn the tricks of tracking digital music, you can create songs of CD quality or better using nothing but your PC - no external equipment is required. Then you can have the exact music that you want instead of dealing with poor sound on non-Wavetable cards and different GM instru ments on each card. You can even get thousands of samples FREE online to make whatever type of music you want. Visit the Hornet demo page (www.homet.com) and do a search for "trackers" and "samples." You can request music samples from me as well—I have several hundred thousand available, from weird bell noises to screaming lead guitars. Also, since even new Wavetable cards have digital chips (called Digital Signal Processors or DSPs) digital music is possible on every card except General MIDI-specific ones such as the Roland RAP ID, Sound Canvas, and other GM-supporting sound modules. There are two trackers that I recommend for use: Impulse Tracker and Fasttracker II. Trackers such as Impulse Tracker use "step time" composition, which means that you write your notes in each rhythmical step in a piano-roll-style editor rather than playing them in using a keyboard. This makes editing extremely easy and powerful since you have complete control over where the notes go and how they are played. Both formats, MIDI and MOD, are supported by the system Epic uses, the Galaxy Music System (See Appendix C). Galaxy provides up to 32 channels of digital sound and supports nearly every existing module format in Windows 95. R e d b o o k A u d i o Redbook audio is used by professionals all over the world, but is essentially limited only to those with stacks of equipment and 120-channel automated mixing consoles. Redbook Audio means making music by any means you see fit, recording it to WAV format, and writing it directly to CD. Redbook audio takes up by far the most space of all of the methods of recording PC music. Only 73 minutes (average) of music can be stored on a single CD, as opposed to dozens of hours worth of MIDI files.. However, the main advantage of Redbook is that it is simple to make 44khz, 16-bit sound and master it, making it sound as clean as the music you buy off the shelves. 14 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  17. 17. A F i n a l W o r d Most of us don't yet have the luxury of studio editing for games. But if you want to come close, learn to write MODs. Some of the best MODs out there have astounded professional artists in terms of quality and realism. For techniques and tricks in any of these composing methods, feel free to write me at alec@citcom.net. I'll be happy to answer any questions. -Alexander Brandon Editor's note: As mentioned under the Submitting Your Work section, Epic is (currently) primarily interested in top-notch digital (MOD) musicians who use high-quality 16-bit samples. The reason for this being that all of Epic's current games and games in development use the high quality Galaxy Music System. Read the next section for more detailed information about Galaxy. Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 15
  18. 18. Appendix C: About the Galaxy Music System The Galaxy Music System (Galaxy) is a digital audio system that offers high-quality (CD-like) music and digital sound effects on virtually all major sound boards available. An advantage of Galaxy is that the CPU calculates the music, so specialized hardware is not needed. In this way, Galaxy will always provide the same quality of music and sound effects regardless of hardware, and it's available for 32- bit DOS and Win32 (Win95AVinNT). What makes Galaxy particularly appealing to Epic and its developers? There are many things, but the most important are: • It is about the most versatile sound system available. • It is highly optimized and about the fastest (in cpu load) of its kind—this is VERY important for all (game) developers. • Fast and reliable developer support is available, either over the Internet or by telephone. This is a highly specialized area in which Galaxy's developers have over five years of experience, and everybody using Galaxy can benefit from this experience and ongoing research activities. Normally, much time would be required for each game developer to "reinvent the wheel," but by using Galaxy, much precious time can be saved and spent on other important matters. • Developers will be assured of working with cutting-edge audio technology, which is constantly being enhanced and updated to meet the top standards of audio market technology. The current version of Digital Dreams' Galaxy Music System, at the time of this publication, is v3.00b. It's a brand new rewrite of the old Galaxy Music Library used in the well known Galaxy Music Player up to version 2.14. This is a completely NEW rewrite, which means totally different replay routines, new software mixing routines, higher mixing resolution and better sound provided through the new and updated LightSpeed(TM) ]I[ High performance Software-DSP. Based on state-of-the-art audio techniques learned by the author after experimenting for over three years, it offers you a complete and easy-to-use sound solution based on cutting-edge audio technology. The Galaxy Music System is constantly being enhanced and updated to keep up with the latest audio and hardware developments. By using the Galaxy Music System you will benefit from the experience, experimentation and technical support of the author. This includes a wide range of supported audio hardware, which has been tested extensively and found working on numerous systems. Features and Support: • Available as 32-bit static-library for Extended-DOS and Windows 95/NT (TM). • Available with the tuned LightSpeed (TM) ]I[ High performance Software-DSP. • Features Dolby Surround (TM) Pro-logic-compatible mixing, for true 3-D Sound placement. • Features advanced mixing routines for Intel's MMX™ technology. • Features professional software mixing routines with digital filtering. • Features 65 panning positions to allow for accurate stereo placement. • Features 32-bit mixing resolution to provide superior dynamic resolution. • Features low mixing latency, for good responsive music and sound effects. • Features up to 32 audio channels, either through software or hardware mixing. • Supports 8- and 16-bit output (16-bit output needs appropriate hardware). • Supports up to 48 kHz mixing-rates, depending on the hardware of course. • Supports direct output to a file, for a crystal clear digital copy. 16 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  19. 19. • Supports full and partial auto detection (user setup also possible). • Supports music and/or simultaneous sound effects (up to 32 channels). • Supports sound-effects-only mode, for combination with CD-Audio. • Supports simultaneous use of CD-Audio playing AND digital output. • Supports multi-sample instruments, for maximum music quality. • Supports 8- and 16-bit samples, for maximum sample sound quality. • Supports volume and panning envelopes, for professional composing. • Supports sample sizes up to as much (sample) memory as you have. • Supports up to 8 octaves, for maximum music composing/replaying quality. • Supports all important and widely used module file formats. Features that go without saying (but we'll say them here anyway): • Excellent, clear, well-optimized, speedy and compatible code. • Demands as little memory as possible by storing all note data packed. • Easy implementation into your 32-bit C/C++ applications. M o d u l e fi l e f o r m a t s Modules are composed in so called "Trackers." Since there are numerous trackers, there are a lot of DIEEERENT module formats. The Galaxy Music System offers an extensive loader library, which will allow you to load a wide range of modules DIRECILY into the music system. This allows you to import musical data from almost any tracker, either Amiga- or PC-based. A list of the recognized and supported module file formats follows: T r a c k e r n a m e D e f a u l t fi l e e x t e n s i o n M a x . C h a n n e l s C o m p o s e r 6 6 9 . 6 6 9 8 G a l a x y M u s i c S y s t e m 3 . x . A M ( * ) 3 2 F a r a n d o l e C o m p o s e r 1 . x . F A R 16 F a s t T r a c k e r 1 . x . M O D 8 F a s t T r a c k e r 2 . x . X M ( * ) 3 2 I m p u l s e T r a c k e r 2 . x . I T ( * ) 3 2 M u l t i T r a c k e r 1 . x . M T M 3 2 P o l y T r a c k e r 1 . x . P T M 3 2 P r o T r a c k e r 2 . x . M O D 4 S c r e a m T r a c k e r 3 . x . S 3 M 3 2 S c r e a m T r a c k e r 2 . x . S T M 4 T a k e T r a c k e r 2 . x . M O D 3 2 U l t r a T r a c k e r 1 . x . U L T 3 2 U n i s 6 6 9 . 6 6 9 8 (*) These formats offer instrument capabilities (Split-points, Envelopes, etc.) Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 17
  20. 20. Please note that due to the fact that some trackers work with a completely different internal structure, some things might be lost during the conversion to the Galaxy Music System's internal AM-Format. Overall, the loaders are constructed in such a way, that as much as possible will be preserved. If you would like to contact the author of the Galaxy Music System for licensing, suggestions, bug reports etc., you can do so through any of the means mentioned below: Digital Dreams Multi-Media Department of Digital Audio Technology Carlo Vogelsang Witbreuksweg 377 suite 309 7 5 2 2 Z A E n s c h e d e The Netherlands +31-(0)53-431-1187 (Available from 10:00 to 22:00 GET) Internet : k.c.vogelsang@student.utwente.nl 18 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack i
  21. 21. Appendix D: Tips for Successful Shareware Game Development Three factors-quality, technology, and gameplay-are absolutely the most important ingredients in a successful shareware game. Fortunes are made or lost based on quality, gameplay, and technology. Thousands of games are released every year, but only a select few make it to the top. These are the highest quality games produced with the most advanced technology available. Quality: Games need to be designed 100 percent bug-free, compatible, easy to operate, and extremely "clean" in terms of graphics, sound, and gameplay. When the time comes to ready a game for release, our authors are not just coders, they are Software Engineers, with the responsibility to test, debug, test, polish, test, and test their product (Epic testers do test the games also, but the developers are usually the best testers and capable of finding bugs that others would never find). Customers expect only the best from the Epic MegaGames team, and we will work to deliver. Technology: Dazzling graphics, music, sound effects, and ground-breaking state-of-the-art tech niques are the common factors linking all shareware success stories. In terms of graphics, customers will come from around the world for crisp, high-resolution, high-color, animated SVGA graphics that exploit their CPUs to the limit. Regarding technology, if you've seen a technique used before, it's not good enough. We need to push the PC to it's limits, then push it some more. That is how we'll leave the competition behind. Gameplay: No matter how much quality and technology a game has, it can only be successful if you have a great core game. Customers want fun and innovative gameplay that will keep them enter tained for many days, with new twists of plot around every corner, new scenarios being revealed every step of the way, and vivid variety. If you've got a game or a design to make a game with these three qualities, there's a good chance you've got a winner! However, we all know that development rarely goes smoothly, without a hitch. Good design and planning can not only help keep your project on track, but it can also ensure that you make the most money on your project with the least amount of effort. Assuming you know what type of game you're going to make—action, shooter, RPG, turn-based strategy, real-time strategy, etc.—several things must be planned for before the real work (coding and art) begins. You must decide on the technical aspects, such as view (side/vertically scrolling, top view, isometric view, first person, movable camera, etc.), game resolution and color depth. In addition, RPGs and strategy games require a large amount of game and interface design before the actual implementation should begin. Which language to program the game in is also very important. The choice of programming language affects several things, such as speed of compiling, speed of execution, and, most importantly, portabil ity. Portable code is especially important these days, because we're seriously looking at ports for Mac, Sony Play Station, N64, and future home systems. Having code that isn't easily portable can cost a lot of extra money down the line, either to have it rewritten or in potential deals lost for other platforms. The most portable code is produced by regular C. C++ is easily portable between Mac and PC, but not to console systems. Other languages such as Borland Pascal or Delphi and ASM are usually not portable to any other platform and have to be entirely rewritten to move a game to other platforms than the PC. Other gameplay features should be planned fairly early in development: multiplayer modes, alterna tive gameplay modes, bonus levels, etc. should also be considered very early in the design process. Games that are multiplayer should be built around this feature from the start. Adding multiplayer support after most of the game/engine has already been coded usually proves to be problematic and time consuming. For example, there were extensive delays while adding multiplayer, modem and network support for both One Must Fall 2097 and Tyrian. Several other things about the game's functionality must always be planned early in the coding process. In order to make sure that your game can be successfully translated to other languages Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 19
  22. 22. (important for large retail distribution deals!), you must keep all in-game text and error messages in resource files. Also, think about how the game will perform best, running off of CD-ROM or hard drive, what kind of music will be used (Redbook, tracked digital, compressed WAVs, etc.), and how this will affect game performance with the different installation options. Rarely does a game get released that doesn't need any sort of update, so take into consideration how to patch the program with these different install options in mind. If the game runs from CD-ROM, it should be able to look to a user-specified path on the hard drive for updates. Make use of Windows' registry for storing such details (this prevents clutter in the hard drive's root directory). In addition to accepting patches, your game should readily accept add-on or expansion packs. In this hit-driven market, only the top games can make money from add-ons. But those games can make a lot more money with expansion packs and add-ons. A user-ffiendly level/map/game editor is also nice to keep users interested because then they can create and share levels. Again, this requires that the game sell well in the first place, but if that's the case, an editor can greatly add to a game's longevity. Even if only a few of these possibilities come true, planning for them will make things much easier and less painful in the long run. Last, but not least, in following with the shareware model, it's also recommended to plan a shareware version which is a small but self-contained portion of the game. This is often done by breaking your game up into parts or episodes. Epic's most successful games have been trilogies, in which the first episode of the game was distributed freely as shareware. Due to the size of games now, we tend not to release a whole third of a game, but do encourage releasing enough of the game to give the potential customer a good feel for what the game is like (20-25 percent of the game's content). An important factor in making shareware successful is to give the user a feeling of accomplishment when he completes the shareware version. Whether or not the game is split into episodes, it is important for the shareware version to end at a crucial part of the story in the game, where the player is rewarded for his victory, but must "buy the rest of the game to continue the mission." Simply throwing together a number of levels in a meaningless fashion does not create a good shareware release and is no better than retail "demos" which only give a taste of the game, often without full functionality. Shareware is rewarding, gives difeel for the entire game, and sells the game (only good games sell in shareware). 20 Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack
  23. 23. Appendix E; Listing of Epic Products ZZT (1991) PC DOS Super ZZT (1992) PC DOS Jill of the Jungle (1992) PC DOS Castle of the Winds (1992) PC WIN3.X Kiloblaster (1992) PC DOS Revenge of ZZT (1992) PC DOS Drum Blaster (1992) PC DOS Overkill (1992) PC DOS Adventure Math (1992) PC DOS Brix (1992) PC DOS Ancients (1993) PC DOS Ken's Labyrinth (1993) PC DOS Solar Winds (1993) PC DOS Dare to Dream (1993) PC WIN3.X Zone 66 (1993) PC DOS Epic Pinball Packs 1&2 (1993) PC DOS Xargon (1994) PC DOS Epic Puzzle Pack: (1994) PC DOS E l e c t r o m a n Heartlight R o b b o Epic Pinball Pack 3 (1994) PC DOS Jazz Jackrabbit (1994) PC DOS One Must Fall 2097 (1994) PC DOS Tyrian (1995) PC DOS Radix: Beyond the Void (1995) PC DOS Extreme Pinball (1995) PC DOS Fire Fight (1996) PC WIN95 Safari Releases Jason Storm (re-released 1994/discontinued) PC DOS Traffic Department 2192 (1994) PC DOS LineWars II (1994) PC DOS Highway Hunter (1994) PC DOS Seek and Destroy (1996) PC DOS Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 21
  24. 24. Appendix F; Awards, Reviews and Kudos Epic Pinbail (1993-1994) PC DOS Best Entertainment Software 1994 (Shareware Industry Award) 1994 Computer Gaming World Shareware Awards, winner of Best Arcade Game Jazz Jackrabbit (1994) PC DOS PC Format Best Action Game 1994 PC Gamer 87% One Must Fall 2097 (1994) PC DOS PC Format Best Action Game 1994 runner up Computer Game Review 89% PC Gamer 84% Home PC (UK) 85% Clicked.com Top 20 Shareware 1996 TVrian (1995) PC DOS PC Gamer 87% 1996 Computer Gaming World Shareware Awards, nominated Best Arcade Game Clicked.com Top 20 Shareware 1996 Radix: Beyond the Void (1995) PC DOS 1996 Computer Gaming World Shareware Awards, nominated Best Action Game Clicked.com Top 20 Shareware 1996 Extreme Pinbail (1995) PC DOS 1996 Computer Gaming World Shareware Awards, nominated Best Arcade Game Clicked.com Top 20 Shareware 1996 Seek and Destroy (1996) PC DOS Computer Games 4/5 stars Fire Fight (1996) PC W1N95 Winner of PC Gamer Best Arcade Game of 1996 Adrenaline Vault Best Arcade Game of 1996 PC Gamer Editor's Choice (90%) Computer Player Recommended (9/10) Strategy Plus Stamp of Approval Intelligent Gamer R+ PC Games R+ 22 Epic MegaGames Author Into Pack
  25. 25. Contacting Epic MegaGames EpicMegaGamescanbereachedinthefollowingways: By Mail 3204 Tower Oaks Blvd., Suite 410 Rockville, MD 20852 By Phone Customer Service: (800) 972-7434; +1 (301) 468-6012 (internationally) Technical Support: -h1 (301) 983-9771 By Fax -hi (301) 299-3841 By E-mail Orders/Customer Service: orders@epicgames.com Technical Support: help@epicgames.com Distribution: vendor@epicgames.com Submissions: recruiting@epicgames.com O n l i n e F o r u m s Internet: http://www.epicgames.com/ FTP: ftp.epicgames.com Compuserve: GO EPIC America Online: keyword "PCGAMES" Author Info Pack Credits Prepared by: Doug Gibson, Vincent Cavin Additional content provided by: Tim Sweeney, Mark Rein, Nick Stadler, Alexander Brandon Editing and layout: Mike Forge Epic MegaGames Author Info Pack 23

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