Last week, we revealed how online monkey popping balloons game Bloons was coming to the App Store, courtesy of creators Ninja Kiwi and Scottish developer Digital Goldfish.
Now we've caught up with Digital Goldfish MD David Hamilton (pictured) to find out some more about how the deal came about and the challenges involved in porting such a well-loved game.Pocket Gamer: How did you first find out about Bloons?
David Hamilton: Bloons was one of these games we came across a few years back when browsing through flash games sites at lunch time. We were quickly hooked. You control a monkey firing darts to pop balloons. Who wouldn't love that?
We found it really addictive - once you start playing, it's difficult to put down. It's one of those games that takes a hold of you and the more you get stuck on one of the trickier levels, the more you want to complete it. YouTube has lots of videos with people posting their solutions to certain levels, trying to help out other frustrated players. There's been many a celebration around the Digital Goldfish office when one of the guys is the first one to complete a level everyone else is stuck on.How did the deal to make the iPhone version come about?
We contacted the guys at Ninja Kiwi awhile back to find out what their plans were for taking Bloons to mobile. They had already received a lot of interest due to it being so popular online. As soon as we were iPhone developer approved, we thought it would be a perfect match so we contacted them again and luckily managed to agree a deal to secure the rights.What do you think is the most important gameplay aspect of Bloons?
The simplicity of the idea, combined with its addictiveness, is what makes Bloons a great game. The fact the control system is easy to pick up also goes along way towards making it accessible for all players. These are definitely the characteristics we want to take forward into the iPhone version. To make sure we've captured the same feel as the online version, we've spent a lot of time tweaking the control mechanism until it feels just right.
How will the control system work on a touchscreen?
The control system works similar to the online version. You can touch anywhere on screen to aim your cursor but instead of having the power bounce between the minimum and maximum, the iPhone version will make use of the slide feature to let you control the power of the dart.How many levels do you hope to include and will there be any exclusives?
There will be 50 brand new levels exclusive to the iPhone version. We realise the game is available to play free online so we needed to give the iPhone users something for buying the game other than being able to play it on the move. We think the levels are just as addictive as the online versions, if not better!Will there be any new power ups or special objects?
We decided to keep the game true to the online version, so all of the favourites will be in there including bombs, boomerangs and ice balloons. We do have a couple of extras up our sleeves that will be hidden in the game but I can't say much on that yet. You've already got me saying too much.How is the process of making your first iPhone game going?
It's going really well. We have been surprised at how well, but you get a lot of support from Apple, and anything is better than the process on mobile.Which part of Bloons iPhone are you happiest about?
As I said before, the appeal of Bloons is the simplicity behind the idea, coupled with just how well everything works together. We wanted to come up with a control system which suited the iPhone, while working as well as the online version. It was also important to recreate the snappy physics associated with the online version of the game and so far we're really pleased with how well everything has come together.Thanks to David for his time. Bloons should be available on the App Store within a couple of months.
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