Gosh. That feels really odd, but kind of exciting, to type.
Courtesy of Thalamus Digital Publishing, Death Ray Manta is soon, finally, going to be playable on the toilet, as is right and just. Because let’s face it, who amongst us doesn’t enjoy flashing lights at ourselves on the loo.
Now, you all know how antsy I am around publishers at the best of times (I’ve turned down a few in my time!) so it takes super safe hands for this to even be a thing.
I’m not here to “maximise revenue”, I’m not here for “marketing spend” or whatever else, that’s not and has never been my concern – there’s plenty of other people making games whom that matters a great deal to. It’s not me. I just want people to play the things that fall out of my head and I want to work with people I trust a great deal. I often think the second one is the best bit.
That’s not to say I don’t want Death Ray Manta to make some nice money for Thalamus and whoever else (including me, I’m skint), of course I do. Money’s kinda useful these days. Business is still business and the rest. You know the drill. Of course I want the best results possible! That’s pie and maybe one day, I’ll be able to afford that dinosaur I always wanted.
So I want a publisher that understands I kinda need leaving alone and not in a neglectful way. I need a publisher that will take good care with my work. I need a publisher that absolutely, totally, unequivocally, is not shitty to devs.
Finding a publisher easily who understands all this and doesn’t offer me a contract that is going to get a loud laugh and a “ahhhh, no” is not really where games ended up for the most part. I’ve had some very generous offers in the past but I can count on one hand the amount who even got close enough to my absurdly high standards and my needs. I can count with precisely zero fingers how many ticked every box.
I am very happy with the arrangement Thalamus offered me. It suits me, it’s generous, it’s fair, it puts devs first. That’s the stuff for me. That matters.
It’s also going to be weird having the Thalamus logo alongside my own because, well, that is weird for anyone as old as me.
Due to my ongoing rubbish health, Andy is handling the workload of making this happen (Andy being the sole reason the existing version plays as nice as it does, my stuff is nothing without his foundations), Ste’s key art and my in-game art will be present and correct, Mike’s wonderful music too. Thalamus have promised (no, really) to take good care of our game and I trust Andy to do the same, pretty much entirely.
I’m grateful that everyone has been as understanding as they have of my need to sit this out and been so absurdly kind and considerate over it too, especially in working to make the Switch version meet my expectations and chugging on whilst waiting for me to remember to do the things like signing contracts and that.
I’ll keep you posted when there’s a release date and all that! For now, I’m a wee bit happy about all of this. I hope our silly little game, something I’m still proud to have been a part of and feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to work with the people I did, can give you a few minutes of smiles too.
And flashy lights too, natch.