Southern New Hampshire University’s (SNHU) own Neal Laurenza has been working for years on a game called “Bacon Man” with his team known as Skymap Games. With the game nearing its completion, Neal agreed to be interviewed by Penmen Press to afford him the opportunity to highlight some of the game’s defining traits, as well as share some insight on the development process and the team’s overall experience.
When asked to highlight features that Bacon Man offered, Laurenza confidently said, “Bacon Man offers a sense of humor that dates back to Ren and Stimpy… a lot of games can be funny, but not in a way that is subtle and maniacal.”
“Bacon Man” is an action-plat former where players control the wide-smiled Bacon Man as he travels the land hoping to reclaim his stolen throne. The complex plat forming style of this game calls back to such familiar classics as “Mega Man X” and “Super Mario Bros” while also managing to forge a unique style of its own. Laurenza said, “Bacon Man will offer complex controls, but will not hold your hand. Bacon Man encourages the unique combination of exploring the world, and exploring mechanics.”
Another unique aspect of “Bacon Man” is that the developers at Skymap chose to forego the option to add online multiplayer. Local multiplayer will be included as an all but primary feature in the game. When asked about the decision to remove online play, Laurenza said, “There is a disconnect when you cannot turn to your friend and see their teary eyes. We’re big believers in keeping that competitive element.”
Being at the heart of the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) season, the stressful yet rewarding process of preparing a booth is all too familiar to the developers at Skymap. In preparation, Laurenza gathered a group of SNHU Game Design students to test the demo, and track down in-game glitches and bugs so they could be removed in time for the expo.
“A successful PAX is a lot of things to a lot of different people,” Laurenza said. His team will be trying to find a healthy medium between media attention, and the approval of the consumer. They are also exploring the middle ground element that makes up consumer media, such as YouTube and other social media platforms.
“Bacon Man” is going to launch in 2016 on Steam, Xbox One, and one other platform that has yet to be announced.