Most of the developers we spoke with at Casual Connect last week weren’t there specifically to promote games for mobile Windows platforms. But one team came for just that reason; submitting their Windows Phone and Windows 8 game to the Indie Prize Showcase contest. The game: Fling Theory from Vancouver-based Coding Jar Studios.
You might remember Fling Theory as one of the six games that Microsoft and its partners launched during GDC back in March. It also happens to number among the first Unity releases for Windows Phone 8. Jodon Karlik, the studio president and Doug Insley, technical artist walked us through Fling Theory’s gameplay, development process, and possible Xbox Live plans during our chat. Get all the details and see the video after the break!
A game you can throw yourself into
Fling Theory is a physics-based puzzle game that takes place on an incredibly small scale. Instead of flinging birds around, you’ll play as a microscopic electron in a scientist’s lab. The goal is always to get from one side of the test chamber to the other. Along the way you can collect stars in order to receive higher level ratings.
The puzzle element comes from the game’s scientific themes. When controlling an electron with a positive charge, it will repel away from positively charged atoms. Other particles with the opposite charge will attract your electron. You’ll have to use these magnetic fields of influence to get your electron where it needs to go without crashing. More complex levels even allow players to switch their charges back and forth in order to negotiate various hazards.
The free base game of Fling Theory contains 23 levels and takes two or three hours to complete. It’s also supported by ads, which players can pay to disable. Coding Jar also sells an extra level pack as well as a bundle with both the level pack and disabled ads. On Windows Phone 8, the bundle costs $1.29. On Windows 8 it rings up for $1.99.
More than a fling
Coding Jar’s two-man team are graduates of Microsoft and Nokia’s AppCampus program. Applicants receive a financial award as well as training in mobile technology, design and usability, and marketing support. In return, Fling Theory launched as a timed exclusive on Windows platforms.
The team’s experience with Microsoft has been extremely positive. In fact, they’re likely to make Windows 8 the lead platform on their next game too. That game is too far off to talk about just yet.
As an Xbox Windows Phone fan, I had to ask Jodon whether he would be interested in releasing Fling Theory as an Xbox Live title. Coding Jar is actually quite interested in Xbox branding, but they say the ball is in Microsoft’s court. That said, the developers have already discussed upgrades for a potential Xbox version such as adding online leaderboards, daily challenges, and speed run challenges.
Step into the test chamber
Let’s hope Microsoft remembers Xbox Windows Phone again and picks Fling Theory up as an Xbox title. In the meantime, you can support this Windows Phone and Windows 8-friendly developer by downloading their game. If you like it, be sure to snag the level pack!
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