Semispheres – Support Your Local Game Dev

Febraury 26, 2016

This week I’ve reserved my ramblings not for one of my own projects but rather for a project of one of the other independent game developers where I live. Radu Muresan has been working for a good amount of time now on a game he’s dubbed Semispheres. Now he’s looking to get it greenlit on Steam to make it available to players through that platform.

Not familiar with Steam or their Greenlight program?

Steam is an online distributor of computer games. A while back they instituted their greenlight program. For a nominal fee, anyone can register as a game developer and then submit their game (or sometimes just a concept for a game) into the program. Players registered with Steam can then vote on the submitted games to decide which ones will be added into the Steam store proper. Developers need to generate enough buzz around their game to get greenlit.

The brief description of Radu’s game is that it’s a cooperative single player game. That doesn’t do much to explain what the game is, but I at least was compelled to find out the answer from such an intriguing description.

Imagine, if you will, your computer screen divided in half down the middle. The left half shows a top-down maze in various shades of orange. The right half is similar but shows in blue. On the left side you control a small, glowing, orange globe. On the right, a small, glowing, blue globe. At the same time. Here’s where that cooperative singe player game comes in.

Your goal is to guide both of your glowing orbs from their starting positions to their ending portals. However, small security dots are on patrol and you have to carefully evade them. This is typically done by gathering power ups and using them to circumvent the security dots or else to distract them. The trick is, you have to get both your blue and orange globes working together. For example, maybe your orange globe has to open a portal between the two sides through which sound (but not the globes) can travel. Then the blue globe has to trigger a noise that goes through the portal and distracts a security dot on the orange side so the orange globe can sneak by.

It’s a tricky game to describe to people and screenshots and video captures don’t really do the concept justice either. But once you start playing it you “get it” immediately. It’s a challenging and fun puzzle game.

So if you have a Steam account, why not pop over to Radu’s Steam Semispheres page and vote to have the game greenlit. You can see a couple of videos and some screenshots of it in action there.

Even if you’re not registered on Steam, you can still help Radu out by spreading the word to all your gamer friends. I’d appreciate it and Radu would appreciate it. Thank you and good night.