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 Post subject: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:53 pm 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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Just wanted to drop a note here that we've released a new game at Himalaya Studios named "Postcards from Anozira".

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It's a "straight" Hidden Object Game (meaning, it's not an Interactive HOG with adventure-game elements), which we started developing mainly as an experiment to see how efficiently the Adventure Game Studio engine could handle this type of game. (As far as I'm aware, this is the very first HOG ever developed in AGS?)

Obviously, this title is aimed predominantly at the casual gaming market, and I'm not sure how much interest there is for Hidden Object games amongst the more cerebral adventure-gaming community, but if you: A) Want to see AGS do something it wasn't intended for; B) Would like to make us minutely richer so we can develop more adventure games; or C) Actually enjoy playing HOG's... be sure to check it out!

The game costs $9.99 USD. It's exclusive to Big Fish Games. You can read more detail and view some screenshots at the links below:

1 Hour Free Trial (98 MB)
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Al Emmo's Postcards from Anozira Information

Try It & Buy Game links


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:31 pm 
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BTW, just to avoid rumors...this is NOT the new commercial project Himalaya has started. This was simply something on the side.

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:48 pm 
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The Master of All Things Musical
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Nice, it's finally out! :)

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:06 pm 
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Congrats on the release! What was the reason for using Arizona backwards in the title? Is it a joke in the game?


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:19 pm 
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The Master of All Things Musical
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Anozira is the fictional location where Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine takes place.

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:57 am 
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Am just downloading the demo, will post my thoughts soon. Out of interest have you considered using an engine other then ags for your games?

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 9:31 am 
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Looks great!! I'm going to get it. By the way, hopefully those stupid AZ boycotts don't affect this! :lol


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 8:04 pm 
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I have never play a h/o game before. Downloaded the demo. Not totally my thing, although I did get some enjoymnent and it seemed nicely made. I had a feeling my wife who is non gamer would like it so flicked it over to her. She loved it. When the hour was up she wasn't happy! So we purchased it

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:50 am 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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Quote:
Looks great!! I'm going to get it. By the way, hopefully those stupid AZ boycotts don't affect this! :lol


Hey, the main antagonist in Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine is a border-skipping Mexican landscape gardener, who's trying to exploit another good-hearted legally-settled Mexican, by falsely posing as a Spanish prince! We have both sides covered. ;)

Thanks for trying it out, guys. Yeah, honestly, I didn't really expect this type of game to resonate as well with adventure game players. Some of the new HOGs are actually becoming more adventure-like in gameplay style, but they're still overly simplistic in terms of puzzles when compared to actual adventure games were you're required to think. There's a lot of hand-holding in casual games, because the audience they're intended for is an entirely different demographic. We made this game as a low-risk project, simply to test the waters in a different niche and to see whether the same criticisms and praises that were leveled at Al Emmo as an adventure game, would hold true for a different genre. (Surprisingly they are completely different!)

Though there's still a few things in "Postcards from Anozira" that people who played "Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine" might appreciate. Several of the old characters return and are fully voiced, and the game also provides some information about locations from the town, based on each character's individual perspective.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:24 am 
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I know you usually keep this sort of thing really quiet, but I thought no harm in asking, what have sales been like? Or if you don't want to talk actual sales, given that this seems to have been an interest project what volume of sales would you deem to be a success?

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:32 am 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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I'm not sure that our contract allows us to state sales figures, but they mentioned that the game was downloaded a lot of times during the first 3 days, which shows a high interest level for a straight Hidden Object Game with no interactive/adventure elements in it.

The conversion rate to actual sales is a bit below the average for games released on their site, but I guess that's to be expected given the budget constraints we're working under and lack of familiarity with the genre. Still, the game has generated more profit than what it cost to make, so I guess you could say it has been successful on some level.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 12:43 pm 
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I think it's a top game, and if my opinion holds any weight, I'd encourage people to buy it. Not because you're supporting a group or a company (because that's just stupid, who'd buy a Microsoft product just because it's from Microsoft...) but because it's a bloody good little game and a bucket load of fun.

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 12:06 am 
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Still haven't gotten round to buying the game, but it sounds like great fun.

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2010 11:26 am 
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I just started playing and wanted to say I'm very impressed. Very polished game!! I like the animations and sound. The sound you hear when you click too much in a short time period reminds me of the sound you hear in KQ4 when Rosella falls off something but doesn't die. Have you guys ever thought about making games for Android? I just got a Droid X and am looking for new apps. The Android market seems like it's growing so fast... and might eventually overtake the iPhone.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 6:50 am 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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Hey, Thanks! Glad you guys are enjoying it. AGS isn't well-suited to developing this kind of game, so I had to take a lot of creative approaches to getting around certain limitations. It's definitely not in the same league as a fully-fledged adventure game, but I enjoyed the challenge of making this kind of game in AGS, just to try something different.

As for developing on other platforms, the only game engine we've ever used has been AGS, and currently its portability options are pretty limited. We're still struggling to make adventures for PC in a timely fashion (hopefully we'll have Mac ports of all our games available soon), so creating games for phones isn't something we've seriously considered yet.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 11:48 pm 
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The Master of All Things Musical
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pbpb33 wrote:
The sound you hear when you click too much in a short time period reminds me of the sound you hear in KQ4 when Rosella falls off something but doesn't die.


Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed that. :)

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:17 am 
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Just thought I would mention that the email you sent out announcing the games release obviously was done through an option to email everyone who is a member of the forum. The thing is in the from field it shows up as Navy Nukes address. That is fine for people who are regulars on the forums, but it would be easy for those who don't come here often to assume an email from navynuke04@yahoo is spam. Could be worth making sure the from field links to Himalaya in some way. Not a biggie but thought it may be worth considering for when you release your next adventure game!

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 5:27 am 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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Indeed, all sound effects in this game were done by MusicallyInspired. :D

Yeah, I noticed the "from" address only after sending it out, and I changed it to a more recognizable address. It seems our AGDI forums Phpbb3 script is broken though, as only half the people on the list actually receive the forum notification mailouts.

I'd mention it via our main newsletter, but that's expensive so I'd rather wait until we announce our next Himalaya Adventure/RPG game to make the announcement, and kill two birds with one stone.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 2:38 pm 
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MusicallyInspired wrote:
pbpb33 wrote:
The sound you hear when you click too much in a short time period reminds me of the sound you hear in KQ4 when Rosella falls off something but doesn't die.


Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed that. :)


I actually didn't know that you did the music and sound until just now. I am not saying this to kiss up, but the sound effects were excellent. They did stand out to me when I first played.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:08 pm 
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The Master of All Things Musical
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Well, I didn't do the music. The music is from the original Al Emmo game (all by Tom Lewandowski) I believe. All the music in "sound effect form" is mine, though.

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 5:40 am 
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I'd mention it via our main newsletter, but that's expensive so I'd rather wait until we announce our next Himalaya Adventure/RPG game to make the announcement, and kill two birds with one stone.


How come your newsletter is expensive to produce?

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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:40 am 
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Wouldn't something like Google Groups be free for non-html emails? I know of some groups that use that service to send out newsletters to very large numbers of people.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 10:02 am 
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The Prince of Shapeir

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We use Campaign Monitor. They have a lot of really good analytical and marketing tools, to help understand how many people are reading the newsletters, which parts are the most popular/well received, and what percentage of people never open it. The data is useful for refining future mailouts to get a better result. Most of these features aren't available on standard mailing lists. But they come at a price. It's $5 to send out an email, plus 1 cent for every recipient. When you have a large list, it gets expensive.

But that's okay. We don't often have enough news to send out a mailing list at regular intervals, so something like this can wait till the next one.


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 Post subject: Re: New Himalaya Game: Postcards from Anozira
PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 6:00 am 
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Anonymous Game Creator 2 wrote:
(hopefully we'll have Mac ports of all our games available soon)

ZOMG REALLY???
I thought I had read a pretty flat "Nope this is it" as far as QfG2 being ported to Mac was concerned somewhere on the forums here, so when you released KQ1 I was like "Okay, so they're doing the smaller games, that makes sense" but this is EVEN BETTER NEWS. Yayayayayayayay!!!!!!!


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