Spaceteam - Interview with the developer of a fantastic app

Did you have any prior development or coding experience?

Yes! I worked in the game industry as a programmer making big games for about 10 years. I worked at Irrational Games and BioWare (which is now owned by EA) on games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect. Before that I made games as a hobby, and when I was in high school I even made a shareware game that made a bit of money. People would download the demo and send me $5 and I would mail the full version to them on floppy disks. Eventually it got picked up by a publisher!

What was the most challenging aspect of developing mobile app?

The most challenging aspect was the networking code. I wanted the connections to work smoothly over WiFi and Bluetooth, even without internet access, and I am by no means a networking expert. Unlike for online multiplayer games, I couldn’t find any libraries or tools that would handle this stuff for me, so I had to figure a lot of it out by myself.

Henry used to work for BioWare on games like Dragon Age: Origins and Mass Effect 3. In 2012 he went indie and he hasn't run out of money yet! His first project was the award-winning party game Spaceteam which took him on lots of fun adventures. He started the Spaceteam Admiral's Club so that fans can help him make and share more games, for free. His next projects are a procedurally-generated cooperative escape room called Blabyrinth, and an unannounced project that has a lot of minigames in it!

Name a few of your favorite apps and reason you love them.

Cinco Paus: a game by one of my favourite designers. The game is about playing with magic wands with powers you don’t understand. To help with the theme, the entire game is in Portuguese!
Transit: a travel app that knows my location and tells me when the next bus is coming, with real-time updates. Super convenient.
Castle: I discovered this recently. It’s a tool for making your own games right on your phone, without any coding! You can easily edit and remix other people’s games, which is great for learning. It reminds me of HyperCard, which I used to make my first games as a kid.

How long have you been working on this app?

The original game (for iOS only) took 3 months to make, start to finish. But then I started adding new features to it, then it got ported to Android, and then I rewrote the whole thing in Unity. It also generated some spin-off projects, an educational version, several customizations for different clients, a now a VR version. It’s now 10 years old and I still support it with occasional bug fixes!

What need of the user did you have in mind when developing this app?

I was inspired by board games, and I wanted to make a simple cooperative party game where everyone was in the same room and their phones connected to each other. I thought it would be fun to have a quick game you could play with your friends wherever you were, with just the phone in your pocket.

In what way do you think your app is better than similar apps on the market? Please describe in detail what innovation you think you bring and what you are proud of in your app.

When I first made Spaceteam there were basically no other games like it. Even today there aren’t very many local multiplayer cooperative games like this. I would love to see (and make) more!

One of the best things about it is its simplicity. Even someone watching the game from a distance can figure out how to play in less than 30 seconds. I get messages from grandparents, and people who don’t play games, and teachers and students who say they love the game and were inspired by it. I’m very proud of it.

What are your future plans and expected features of the coming new versions of this app?

Since the original game is 10 years old I’m not really updating it any more, except for critical bug fixes to keep it alive. But if I get some time in the future I would love to add some accessibility features so more people of different abilities can play it and still have fun.

Assuming new users of your app are reading this page. What do you want to ask them to do (contact you about X, Share the app, etc.)?

Please share the game with all your friends! I don’t have an advertising budget so word of mouth is the only way people learn about it. And stay tuned for my other local multiplayer party games, coming… soon? I know they have been coming soon for a while, but in the meantime I had two kids and there was a global pandemic. Thanks for your patience


About App:

Do you like pushing buttons and shouting at your friends? Do you like discharging Clip-jawed Fluxtrunions? If you answered yes, or no, then you might have what it takes to be on a Spaceteam.

Spaceteam is a cooperative party game for 2 to 8 players who shout technobabble at each other until their ship explodes. Each player needs a mobile device (Android and Apple devices can play together over Wifi!).

You'll be assigned a random control panel with buttons, switches, sliders, and dials. You need to follow time-sensitive instructions. However, the instructions are being sent to your teammates, so you have to coordinate before the time runs out. Also, the ship is falling apart. And you're trying to outrun an exploding star.

Good luck. And remember to work together... as a Spaceteam!

- Teamwork
- Confusion
- Shouting
- An untimely demise
- Beveled Nanobuzzers
- Auxiliary Technoprobes
- Four-stroke Pluckers

Awards & Recognition:
* Winner - GameCity Prize 2013
* Winner - IndieCade 2013 (Interaction Award)
* Winner - A MAZE. Indie Games Award 2013 (The Most Amazing Indie Game)
* Winner - International Mobile Gaming Awards 2013 (Innovation Award)
* Finalist - Independent Games Festival 2013
* Featured Game - IndieCade East 2013
* Selection - PAX East Indie Showcase 2013

Categories: Casual, Game

Date: February 16, 2023

Developer: Henry Smith

About developer: Henry used to work for BioWare on games like Dragon Age: Origins and M ... Read more



App URL in iTunes
App URL in Google Play


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