A Hat in Time made a big splash in the indie game scene late last year by being one of the best and cutest 3D platformers of all time. Inspired by collect-a-thons from the early 2000s, A Hat in Time follows the adorable Hat Kid as she travels around and collects the missing Time Pieces that are used to power her spaceship.
In our review for the game, we praised the charming characters, catchy music, and fluid controls as some of A Hat in Time‘s best features. It truly is one of the best modern platforming games, and now Gears for Breakfast is looking to expand the world a little more with a new DLC pack called Seal the Deal coming next month.
Seal the Deal will include a brand new chapter for the game, called The Arctic Cruise. You will explore the titular ship and help the captain with his daily tasks to make sure everything runs smoothly. The cruise ship features characters from earlier chapters, such as the birds and mafia members, as well as some new seal friends.
The DLC pack also includes a mode called Death Wish, in which The Snatcher enlists your help with a bunch of new contracts. This includes new Time Rifts, revisiting old areas, and fighting old bosses again. If you play through this mode, you will unlock a ton of new costumes, including one that makes Hat Kid look like she jumped straight out of the Nintendo 64 era. This DLC pack will be available for free on September 13th. However, the pack will cost $4.99 after the first day. So if you have the game, keep your eyes peeled for the new content in just a few weeks.
In addition to Seal the Deal, the developers are also bringing split-screen co-op to A Hat in Time. This will allow anybody to play the entire game with a friend by taking control of a brand new character. This update will be free forever and will also release on September 13th. It’s also worth noting that all of this downloadable content has only been confirmed for the PC version of the game. It’s unknown at this time whether the developers have any plans to release any of this on the Xbox One or PlayStation 4.
But Gears for Breakfast didn’t stop there. Ever since A Hat in Time released, fans have argued that the game would be most at home on a Nintendo system. Well, now the developers are finally delivering on that. A Hat in Time is officially in development for Nintendo Switch. This comes as no surprise since the Switch is gaining more momentum each day and has become a great home for indie titles, especially platformers. Unfortunately, there is no release date, so we’ll have to wait for more information.
For now, you can check out the new content that’s making its way to A Hat in Time in the video above! Which content are you most excited about? Will you be replaying the game with a friend? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Summer Games Done Quick is just a couple days away, starting this Sunday, June 24th, at 12:30 PM Eastern. As always, this week-long event will be packed full of amazing speedruns, all performed in the name of supporting Doctors Without Borders. SGDQ 2018 is boasting an impressive lineup of 175 runs, totaling an estimated 148 hours of gameplay. Many of these games have been featured before, but there is an exciting handful making their GDQ debut!
Metroid: Samus Returns—Any% by Mr_Shasta
Nintendo surprised us all last summer when it announced Metroid: Samus Returns for the Nintendo 3DS. Even more surprising was that it was set to launch just a few short months later! Samus Returns is a remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus, in which our favorite bounty hunter Samus Aran is tasked with the extermination of the Metroid species.
Samus Returns is more than a simple remaster, however. Samus is back with a new suite of tricks known as Aeion abilities. These abilities range from slowing down time to scanning the environment for hidden secrets. Upgrades from later in the series, such as the Super Missile, have also been added in to SR388.
Metroid speedruns have always intrigued me because of the labyrinthine nature of the games. There are usually some beautiful technical tricks utilized throughout the run, but the amount of knowledge needed to remember where to go, in addition to the inventory management often required, has kept me captivated.
There’s no doubt that this run will be just as exciting. Mr_Shasta is one of the top runners for the Any% category, currently holding third place with an in-game time of 1 hour, 27 minutes, and 21 seconds. Given that this is just over three minutes slower than record, I’m positive that this run will be one to watch.
Metroid: Samus Returns is scheduled for 9:46 PM on Tuesday, June 26th.
Cuphead—All Flags (Regular, Legacy) by TheMexicanRunner
Alright, I’m pretty biased on this one. As the head moderator of the Cuphead speedrunning community, I couldn’t be more excited to see the game make its Games Done Quick debut. Putting my personal bias aside, however, Cuphead is a speedrun that is equal parts challenging to play and entertaining to watch, making it one of my most anticipated runs of the week.
When Cuphead launched in September of last year, it quickly made a name for itself as a rather difficult, albeit extremely successful and well-received game. Despite this, Cuphead may be best known for its overall aesthetic—notably a phenomenal jazz soundtrack and visuals mimicking the golden age of cartoons. As Cuphead‘s popularity grew, so did the interest in speedrunning it. In fact, at one point, Cuphead ranked on speedrun.com as the most actively run title on the site. Even now, it still holds 12th place!
As hard as Cuphead can be on its own, it can be even more devilish when one tries to complete it quickly. A top-tier speedrun requires extensive knowledge of boss attack patterns, a sixth sense about how far you’ve progressed in the fight, good RNG, and some incredibly risky maneuvers. Even the easiest of the Cuphead bosses can be a run killer if you take it too easy and lose track of these ingredients.
Presenting the game during Games Done Quick is none other than TheMexicanRunner. Though TMR may be best known for being the first person to complete all 714 NES games, he is also a very accomplished speedrunner, currently holding records in Battletoads, Contra, and Cuphead. In fact, the current record in All Flags (Regular, Legacy) is held by TMR, with an impressive time of 30 minutes, 32 seconds.
Cuphead at Summer Games Done Quick provides the perfect combination of a being a beautiful game and an exciting, tense speedrun, all while being performed by a very popular, talented runner. It is this combination that earns Cuphead a spot on this list!
Cuphead is scheduled for 10:56 PM on Wednesday, June 27th.
A Hat in Time—Any% Race by flarebear and ConnorAce
Despite how you may feel about developers turning to Kickstarter to acquire funding, there have been a few games that have done fairly well after their goal was met. One such game is A Hat in Time, a Banjo-Kazooie/Super Mario 64-inspired action platformer that raised almost 10 times its crowdfunding goal.
A Hat in Time follows its protagonist, Hat Kid, as she tries to regain her missing Time Pieces, powerful objects that can control the flow of time and serve as fuel for her spaceship. Along her journey, she has to square off against the Mafia and her friend-turned-enemy Mustache Girl. There are a lot of collectibles to grab along the voyage, including Yarn Balls. These balls can then be crafted into various hats, which grant Hat Kid various powers.
The speedrun makes heavy use of movement techniques to skip entire portions of the required levels, as well as to generally go faster. A Hat in Time will make its GDQ debut as a race between flarebear and ConnorAce, ranked 6th and 16th on the leaderboards, respectively. Though the three minutes separating these players may make this seem like a one-sided race, in a live setting, anything can happen!
A Hat in Time is scheduled for 12:06 AM on Thursday, June 28th.
Celeste—Any% Race by TGH and yoshipro
2018 came out of the gate swinging with a little independent platformer titled Celeste. Much like Cuphead a few months prior, Celeste quickly received praise for its difficulty level, which I previously likened to that of Super Meat Boy. More notably, however, was how Celeste tackled the ever-prevalent issues of depression and mental health throughout its story and its main character, Madeline.
The controls in Celeste are fairly simple relative to other titles. You can move, jump, climb, and dash. Madeline must make use of these actions to journey up Celeste Mountain, and much as climbing a real mountain is difficult, so too is Madeline’s journey. What makes Celeste this difficult is the fact that players must precisely time and position their movements in order to overcome the obstacles ahead of them.
Races are always a favorite of mine at events like this, even more so when the game involved relies on mechanics like those in Celeste. A simple mistake can cause a screen reset or worse, and in most races, this could be the deciding factor. Just look at the Super Metroid race from SGDQ 2017 as an example.
But in games such as Celeste, such a mistake is hardly the end of the road. Mistakes will likely happen on both sides. Celeste was built with speedrunning in mind, however, and as a result has near-instantaneous respawn times. This makes each mistake nothing more than a tiny bump in the road.
The race will be made even better because of the runners behind the controls. TGH and yoshipro are currently ranked 1st and 2nd respectively in the Any% category and are only separated by about a minute in times. All of this combined means that Celeste is going to be a super tight, entertaining race from beginning to end.
The Celeste Any% race is scheduled for 1:21 AM on Thursday, June 28th. As a bonus incentive, there is a tool-assisted run (TAS) queued for somewhere on the schedule if enough money is raised. Take it from me, you
definitely want to check out this insanity.
Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy—Glitchless% by MONTYvsTHEWORLD
When Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy launched last October, I never expected it to take off as a speed game. Getting Over It is a rage-inducing mountain climbing game where you ascend by propelling yourself with a sledgehammer. Even the slightest mistake can cause an avalanche of lost progress. I’ve seen people throw chairs and computer mice, scream at the top of their lungs, and cry, all because they wound up a few sections behind where they were. But give people enough time and anything is possible.
Not long after release, runners were already driving times down to just a few minutes. MONTYvsTHEWORLD is currently 17th on the leaderboard with an in-game time of 1 minute, 47.086 seconds. Despite this ranking, however, MONTY is just about 20 seconds behind the record. In fact, the top 44 players all have times under two minutes. Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy is set to be an extremely short run, but the technicality and difficulty of the run should prove to be an entertaining time. Just don’t blink or you might miss it.
Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy is scheduled for 2:47 AM on Thursday, June 28th.
All times are listed in Eastern time. The schedule is subject to (and will) change throughout the marathon. For the most current revision, be sure to check out the schedule here(automatically converts to your time zone).
There was a point in time when 3D platformers dominated the video game market. However, gaming trends have evolved, and now most games seem to feature a more open world experience. With these larger worlds, 3D platforming games have become scarce, mostly coming from Nintendo and SEGA. But with the rise of indie game developers, this genre is being revitalized with a passion we’ve never seen before. A Hat in Time is one of several 3D platformers to release this year, and it represents everything you could possibly want in a modern day title from this genre.
Like most 3D platformers, A Hat in Time has a simplistic story. An adventurous young girl named Hat Kid is traveling through space and enjoying life when a resident of the nearby world Mafia Town knocks on her door and demands a toll for passing by. Hat Kid responds to this by shutting the door in the mafia member’s face, thinking the problem is dealt with. However, he comes crashing through the glass door, which immediately causes outer space to suck out many of Hat Kid’s precious belongings, as well as Hat Kid herself. Most importantly, Hat Kid loses the time pieces that run her spaceship.
After this unfortunate property damage occurs, Hat Kid crashes into Mafia Town, where she meets a mustached girl named…Mustache Girl. The two quickly become friends and Mustache Girl vows to help Hat Kid find all of the missing time pieces in Mafia Town.
A Hat in Time isn’t heavy with its story, but it is simple and cute enough to keep players invested. While this synopsis only covers the beginning of the game, each world has its own unique story. One world will have you helping two different directors make an award-winning film while another will put you through a mysterious haunted house to uncover its dark secrets. But no matter what world you’re visiting, the end goal stays the same for Hat Kid: collect all the time pieces so she can make her way home.
By this point, you understand where the game is going. You’ll be playing through several different worlds to collect as many time pieces as you can. It’s a formula that’s similar to games like Super Mario Odyssey or Banjo-Kazooie. However, A Hat in Time takes this formula a step further by giving the player different powers they can utilize along their journey.
As Hat Kid, you can collect several different types of yarn to stitch together various hats. Each hat has its own unique abilities. For example, the default hat shows you where your next objective is located, and a different hat lets you run really fast. These hats can also be upgraded with gems you’ll be collecting. In the case of the sprinting hat, you can get an upgrade that instead lets you ride a scooter that travels much faster.
These power ups will help you get to places you couldn’t reach before, but they’re also just fun to use outside of their intended functions. No hat is more important than the other, so you’ll want to collect as much yarn as possible to get them all. Hat Kid also has an umbrella she can wack baddies with, a homing attack she can use to bop enemies on the head, a dive move similar to the one in Super Mario Sunshine, and a double jump to get to harder-to-reach platforms.
However, because Hat Kid has so many utilities at her disposal, the game can become pretty easy. The platforming segments are never super challenging. When you do die, the game is rather forgiving about where your last checkpoint was. When I sat down with A Hat in Time, I had collected all the time pieces in just one weekend.
The game becomes a lot more challenging when fighting bosses. You won’t be shaking your controller in rage by any means, but it will take a couple of tries to figure out each boss’s unique patterns. It feels super satisfying to defeat each boss in this game, and the final level is one of the coolest battles I’ve seen in any platforming game.
A Hat in Time plays like a dream. It hits all the marks a 3D platformer should and even goes beyond those expectations.
Sound Design and Visuals
The sound design for A Hat in Time is phenomenal. Every noise in this game is meant to make you feel great. Even though it’s something simple, the crescendo of notes that are made when collecting gems in succession is satisfying enough to make me want to collect multiple gems at once every time. The cries of enemies and the effect noises for all the power ups make everything feel much more special.
But all of this would mean nothing if the game didn’t have a good soundtrack. Thankfully, A Hat in Time features music I would gladly listen to any time outside of the game. Each song fits the mood of each stage, and each boss battle has a theme that stands out from the rest of the adventure.
This wonderful sound experience mixes very well with the game’s beautiful art direction. All of the characters are colorful and cartoony. This stylized look and the expressive characters reminded me a lot of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. But A Hat in Time has its own personalized feeling to this art style. The environments in this game are so stunning that you’ll forget it isn’t even running on the latest version of Unreal Engine.
A Hat in Time is one of the best 3D platformers I’ve ever played. It has a wonderful blend of everything that makes the genre great: a simple story, likeable characters, a beautiful art design, and one of the best soundtracks I’ve ever heard. The game is a little short and easy, but the developers are currently working on DLC for it, some of which will be free. For the price tag of $29.99, A Hat in Time is a must-buy for anybody that has ever enjoyed a 3D platforming game in their life. I can easily see myself playing this one over and over again for years to come.
No ChannelImages 9 Our Verdict A Hat in Time A Hat in Time provides a wonderful 3D platforming experience with beautiful visuals, awesome abilities, incredible boss fights, and a soundtrack you’ll want to take with you everywhere. The game is super addicting and you’ll never want to put it down. The game is pretty short and easy. You won’t have to spend more than a few hours to complete this game. Top
For those who love 3D platforming games, don’t forget that Yooka-Laylee isn’t the only colorful game from the genre coming next year. Gears for Breakfast’s first game, A Hat in Time, is coming in 2017 as well, and they’ve released a new trailer that shows off the third chapter. You can check out this vibrant world in the trailer above!
What do you guys think? Are you excited for A Hat in Time as much as you are for Yooka-Laylee? Let us know in the comments below!
As we get closer to the full release of A Hat in Time, developer Gears for Breakfast is showing off more of the adorable platformer. Their latest sneak-peek at the game features its second gameplay area. Dubbed “Chapter 2: Subcon Forest,” this spooky world is full of frights and features a haunted manor that recalls Luigi’s Mansion. Hat Kid can be seen navigating the forest with items like a grappling hook and even a motor scooter. You can view the new footage above and head here to purchase beta access for yourself to dive into the game early.
Developer Gears for Breakfast has just announced that the beta build of their upcoming game A Hat in Time should be releasing next weekend.
The game’s alpha release is currently available; however, on March 7th the developer is hoping to release a new beta build of the game on Steam with all sorts of new content. For those that already have the alpha build, your game will be upgraded to the beta on March 7th; everyone else will get a Steam download code in their Kickstarter or Humble Bundle email.
A Hat in Time has been a labor of love since the very beginning. Now, more than a year into post-Kickstarter development, the team at Gears for Breakfast has shared some of their progress in the form of a screenshot comparing the original build used in their campaign to one of their current version. The difference is pretty encouraging—the new beta screenshot is much more lush, the world looks much more filled-in, and the lighting and shadow-casting looks much cleaner.
Gears for Breakfast posted this comment with their screenshot:
That’s a big improvement, thank you all once again, we couldn’t do it without you!
We’re sorry we don’t share much outside of known areas (Mafia Town, Queen Vanessa Manor), but we want to keep it a surprise for when the beta rolls around (no date yet, we’ll make sure to let you know once we know for sure!)
Gears For Breakfast’s A Hat in Time hit Kickstarter last year with the promise to breath new life into a genre of 3D platformer-collectathons that had been pretty much stagnant since the glory days of Rareware back on the Nintendo 64. A lot of people apparently believed in that promise, and the game’s original goal of $30,000 was surpassed by nearly ten times, leaving A Hat in Time with a sterling $296,360 in crowdfunding and all of its stretch goals smashed.
Just after the madly successful Kickstarter campaign’s conclusion, Gamnesia had the chance to speak with one of the game’s developers and pick his brain on various A Hat in Time and game design related topics. But now that it’s been more than a few months and A Hat in Time‘s alpha build has been released to those who backed a high enough tier, I decided it was about time we chatted with Gears For Breakfast again, this time on how everything’s progressing, the development process, Grant Kirkhope, the potential for console releases, and more.
So, without further ado, here’s the interview!
I boot up the game, and my first impression is “Huh, for an alpha, this is pretty polished.” The controls were fairly responsive, the visuals were fantastic, and even the menus seemed near completion. I mean, it’s obvious you’re not done yet, but just how much more polishing are you guys planning to put on A Hat in Time’s general systems before release?
Thanks! I’m glad you like what you’ve seen so far! We’ve worked so hard to bring this alpha to the public and I’m happy to report that people are saying positive things about it.
As it stands we are planning to finish 7 chapters (levels) with 4-5 acts each and as you can imagine that’s a lot of work for a small team of nine people who live all over the world. We’re doing well so far but there’s still a lot to do. So far we’ve got Chapter 1 and 2 working but we still have the rest to flesh out and we’re pretty pleased with the progress we’ve made. It’s a long journey, some of us having worked on it for over a year!
Overall though we’ll release the final product when we’re happy with the quality and performance. We have no interest in releasing a buggy, incomplete game so hopefully our fans can be patient while we work towards that goal!
How’s development progressing overall? All going smoothly? Now that you’ve probably had some time to settle into this, what kind of stuff is it you guys actually end up doing as indie developers? What’s been your personal favourite part of the development process?
It’s been an interesting journey so far. For a team that hasn’t met each other in person, we’re doing alright! Thanks to the internet we can have team meetings and upload our work for critique and I personally feel that it gives us all space so we can continually work together with very little stress.
As indie developers we don’t have the convenience of a large team and therefore most of the members take on multiple roles. For example my role as the Art Director involves keeping the art style consistent but my work also includes some of the Level Design. The games Director, Jonas Kærlev, takes on a lot of responsibility to promote the game to the public as well as programming, animating and scripting the gameplay.
I think that the most interesting aspect was joining this small unknown group of people and seeing it develop as we became more known to the public. Our spotlight during the Kickstarter campaign brought in new talents who were interested in our game and from there it’s been an interesting ride! As some of us have never worked on a full retail game before so it’s great to not only learn the bumps but also see it grow and reach new audiences.
You made it pretty clear what kinds of games inspired A Hat in Time—Banjo-Kazooie, Mario 64, and the like—but have you found it necessary to be playing those games for research purposes during development? Or are you more on the side of taking inspiration from the feeling of those titles while creating A Hat in Time as a wholly unique endeavour?
All of the team has played at least one of those games and we grew up with them so it’s only natural that their styles are embedded in our designs. They do play a part in our design philosophy but for the most part we’re taking inspiration from them and creating our own style.
I have noticed some people saying the alpha plays like a mix of Mario 64 and Banjo Kazooie so I like to think we’ve found a space between them where our game has its own unique identity.
One of the interesting things about the level designs in games like Banjo-Kazooie and Mario 64 is that the levels really aren’t “levels” in the traditional sense; They’re more like small worlds that you explore (at least partially) as you see fit, each with their own quirks and secrets. You’re reflecting that mentality in A Hat in Time, correct? What attracted you to that style?
I personally think that a lot of modern day games have stumbled away from the days when you were placed in a unique world with colourful characters and were left to explore it at your own pace with no arrows telling you what to do. So when we say that we’re trying to bring back “Collect-a-thon platforming” we mean just like the old days from the N64 era of gaming.
In Hat‘s case, I feel our levels have more meaning to the overall plot rather than just being cool levels with lots of mini-games. For example, you learn in the alpha that you fell from the sky and lost your trusty umbrella and as you move forward you get hints that the island wasn’t always called “Mafia City” and that there’s more going on than meets the eye.
So compared to Mario 64 and Banjo, I feel our levels have the same style but with the addition of a story based history that flows into the level and makes it feel like a believable world. But don’t worry, the levels will still be quirky and stylish. After all our main aim is to create fun gameplay!
How has it been to work with Grant Kirkhope? What was his initial reaction when you approached him about doing music for A Hat in Time? Has he been able to teach Gears For Breakfast’s musicians much through his compositions for the game?
He’s a nice guy! Very friendly and always responds to questions so it’s been pleasant to work with him. That was quite a while ago when we approached him but I believe he showed a keen interest wheright from the start and he was more than willing to help us in our quest.
Currently he has composed the theme of the game and our main composer, Pascal Michael Stiefel, has created everything else heard in the alpha. Additionally the special bookstore song was composed by Mathias Kærlev.
Everyone says Nintendo’s really trying with indies now, but what has your experience been trying to get A Hat in Time onto Wii U?
As it currently stands we’re still looking at that option but our main focus is finishing the game on PC first. However our dealings with Nintendo have been pleasant and they have been helpful.
I suppose this one’s fairly obligatory: is there anything new to report on A Hat in Time’s potential console release on Wii U? Are you in or planning to be in contact with Sony or Microsoft about a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One release?
There’s always a potential! So long as the demand is there (which it is) then we can work towards that goal but right now finishing the game is our main priority before we make such huge leaps especially since we’re a small indie team.
I think we’ve proven we’re a capable team and we can produce a game that is up to modern day standards so the opportunity to see A Hat in Time on other platforms is very possible.
Now, out of all the games Rare developed during their streak of awesome for the Nintendo 64, which game is your personal favourite?
William (3D Art Director): Donkey Kong Country for being my first ever game with its great soundtrack and balanced platforming. I seriously hated that minecart level as a kid, you know the one…Otherwise it’s a solid game and very nostalgic to me.
Jonas (Director, Programmer): Diddy Kong Racing was one of my first Nintendo 64 games and I really enjoyed it. Looking back it hasn’t aged well, but I still remember having fun just driving around the overworld. The joys of a 9 year old.
Peter (3D Art): Banjo Kazooie was my life as a kid. I loved the variety of immersive and colorful worlds to explore, and I still find myself humming tunes from the soundtrack occasionally without realizing it.
Any closing thoughts you’d like to leave us with?
We’re just happy that people are saying positive things about the alpha. My favourite moments were seeing people love the bright and bubbly Mafia City only to turn a shade of grey when they first met Queen Vanessa.
Otherwise we’re fixing the alpha with patches thanks to the feedback on our Community Tracker and we’re very grateful to the people who are really putting in the time to find even the smallest bugs. They do help!
Thanks for interviewing us and I hope people will look forward to the next Beta stage in the future.
Grant Kirkhope’s a very friendly guy, one or more console releases are certainly a possibility, A Hat in Time‘s levels play out more like small worlds, everyone on the team wears several hats (pun potentially intended), Nintendo’s dealings with Gears For Breakfast have been pleasant, and the game will be ready when the team thinks it’s ready.
Now who else out there’s been enjoying A Hat in Time‘s alpha?
One of my most highly-anticipated games of 2014 is easily the Kickstarter-funded indie platformer A Hat in Time.
While the release date is a long way away, if you’re too excited to
wait, you can play the alpha version in just three days! Of course, you
have to keep in mind the fact that it isn’t a finished product. If you
are going to invest in it, you have to keep in mind the fact that it is
an unfinished, unoptimized product.
Are you interested enough to drop a solid forty dollars for the A Hat in Time alpha, or would you rather spend your hard-earned cash elsewhere? Drop your opinions down there in the comments!
Have you ever felt the intense urge to play a fantastic-looking game
before it releases? Of course you have! And now, with the announcement
of when the alpha build of A Hat in Time is going to be released,
you can experience this feeling first-hand. Just drop 20-70 USD on a
pre-order over here, and come Febuary 20th, you will be able to download
an early form of the game on Steam. To be fair, however, they do have
the ability to push back the release as they wish.
Some things of
note are that the optimization is said to be poor, it is probably going
to be filled with glitches and bugs, and many assets are going to be
unpolished. But that’s the trade-off for getting to play a great game a
great bit early!
Is it Halloween anymore? No. It is not. Does that mean we shouldn’t be watching new footage of A Hat in Time that happens to contain the phrase “Happy Halloween?” Well, I certainly don’t think so. In other words, to celebrate the now-past holiday, Halloween, Gears for Breakfast decided to release a brief trailer of what appears to be something of a stealth-horror level from A Hat in Time. As is a general rule with early trailers like this, keep in mind that the gameplay shown is “far from finished” and therefore does not represent the final quality of the game. Though A Hat in Time looks pretty damn good anyway, if I do say so myself.
We know for certain that it’s coming to PC and it’s seeming very likely it’ll make its way to Wii U as well. Who else is looking forward to A Hat in Time?
The Kickstarter-funded A Hat in Time‘s Wii U release status has been unknown since its announcement. Even though it was on their wishlist when the campaign had started, they have needed to obtain a publisher for their engine use. Because of this, it could neither be a stretch goal or a promise.
However, after a long wait, it has been practically confirmed for the Wii U. Many a time have they been questioned as to the status of the port, and they have always answered with a resounding, “no comment.” However, rumors have been gathering in regards to this subject, and a recent Tweet from A Hat in Time‘s director has nearly sealed the deal.
Good news on the Wii U front… cant say much atm unfortunately though, lets just say exciting times ahead!!
Admittedly, this isn’t technically a confirmation, but what else could it be? Especially considering last week’s news on their Nintendo license, this tease really couldn’t mean anything else. Are you excited for this game? Sound off in the comments!
Gears for Breakfast, creators of the upcoming platformer title A Hat in Time, intends to release their game on the Wii U via the system’s eShop. To do so, they must become licensed by Nintendo. Yesterday, director Jonas Kaerlev said the studio is “currently in authorization at Nintendo to become a 3rd party developer,” and mentioned “the kind people at NoA are helping us through the process.” It should be noted that while an eShop release of the game is highly speculated, nothing concrete has been confirmed.
We here at Gamnesia have talkedabout the Banjo-Kazooie style 3D platformer collectathon A Hat in Time quite a bit over the past few weeks, and with good reason. This game looks amazing. Several weeks ago, the new studio Gears for Breakfast launched a Kickstarter campaign with a goal of $30,000. They passed that goal by more than just a little bit. By the end of the campaigns allotted time period, A Hat in Time had garnered over $295,000, almost ten times its original objective. Needless to say, all of the game’s stretch goals — ranging from a cooperative mode, to full voice acting, to extra worlds to explore — were reached, and in fact, they were reached early enough that for the last few days of the campaign, an interminable stretch goal was added for one new song from famed Banjo-Kazooie composer Grant Kirkhope for every $15,000 the game received past the $200,000 mark.
To make a long story short, A Hat in Time’s kickstarter campaign was a huge success, and we here at Gamnesia could not be happier about that, so we contacted the team to talk a bit more in depth about the development process, the inspirations behind the game, the team’s goals for A Hat in Time, and even just a little bit about video games in general. William Nicholls, the team’s lead environment artist and the great guy with whom we had the honor of speaking, has a lot of interesting and insightful stuff to say, so here you go!
You’ve explicitly stated that games like Banjo-Kazooie had a huge influence on A Hat in Time, but what exactly about those games was so inspiring to you? What sets them apart from other 3D platformers in your eyes?
For starters we felt that Banjo Kazooie had the right level of balance in the collecting things whereas Donkey Kong 64 went too far so that’s our first inspiration. We also enjoyed the wittiness that was depicted in all the Rare games so we’re working on our own sense of humor to put in the game. We also feel strongly about the music in Banjo, Mario, Zelda and hopefully our soundtrack will reflect that! Ultimately though it’s difficult to describe but the N64 adventure games had a level of emotion that evoked a sense of enjoyment and delight and we want to try and replicate that in A Hat in Time.
One of the most surprising things we know about A Hat in Time is that Grant Kirkhope is composing a decent amount of the game’s soundtrack. How did you get in touch with Kirkhope, and can we get a final count on the number of songs he’s composing for the game?
We contacted his email, asked him if he would be willing to compose some songs for our game and we worked from there. We’re still sorting out the best places to use his songs and it’s a lengthy process of weighing which songs are more important so I can’t give a final number just yet.
A Hat in Time looks like it’s going to be an absolutely gorgeous game. How and when did this “Wind Waker meets Super Mario Sunshine” sort of aesthetic come about?
Quite early on. The game started off as a hack and slash prototype and the concepts drawn by Jonas Kaerlev (Director) had a similar style to Wind Waker. Back then only Trey Brown was working on the art so they followed that route for a few months. Then I joined the team and since my last project was Wind Waker inspired, it made the perfect fit. We slowly broke away from the features that made people think “Wind Waker” and developed our own visual art style. I also feel people are saying the game reminds them of Wind Waker / Sunshine because our first level takes place on a tropical island but make no mistake the later chapters are a far cry from those inspirations.
How was the idea for A Hat in Time born? Did the idea just come to you, or were you deliberately brainstorming ideas for a game?
Originally the game started off as a fun experiment in UDK (Unreal Engine) and was developed as a hack and slash adventure game. Early prototypes were made and a small fanbase was created. Jonas found the platforming to be more fun than the actual hacking and slashing though, so we decided to go in that direction. Eventually more members joined the team and the game became what it is now.
Was A Hat in Time ever planned to be a 2D platformer, or were you always aiming to make a 3D game, given the inspirations you’ve listed in the past?
It was always going to be a 3D game. 2D is great but our team has more experience working in 3D so it was a no-brainer.
Were there any runner-ups for what kind of game you would be developing? What would you be developing if not A Hat in Time?
No other games were planned. Jonas would probably have finished off his
studying and then worked some dead-end job and the rest of us would
probably be working on other projects or jobs.
You mentioned in your campaign promotion that creating a game with no budget takes a lot of seriously hard work. Just how much work did you have to put into A Hat in Time to get it to the stage we saw in the Kickstarter trailer? What obstacles does now having a budget help you overcome?
Oh it does. So much work. We started in August last year but work really picked up in January when we made the first / second level and we polished it all the way to June for Kickstarter. A lot of the team could only put in a few hours a day but several of the team members worked really hard so that it would look presentable to the public. With the money we can pay the team for their work and thus we can make more progress on the games development and its quality.
How did you like running a Kickstarter campaign overall? Did you ever think it was possible that you would hit all of your stretch goals? What about then going beyond even that up to over $295,000?
It was definitely an interesting experience. We didn’t expect to reach 30,000 but we made almost 10 times as much in the course of 30 days. We owe a lot to the fan base, the various streamers and our PR manager Gustav Dahl who worked hard to make the Kickstarter look good.
Have you enjoyed getting input from your backers? Has any one idea from a backer become a major element of the game?
Certainly. We’re always looking at what people have to say and taking it into consideration. Even a small idea can start a chain of thought! For example someone drew a nice picture of the lighthouse from the first act of the game and I particularly liked the windows they added so feeling inspired I made my own.
Obviously you’ve put tons of work into A Hat in Time, but what one tiny detail are you or your team most proud of? I mean something really small, so small that your players might not even notice it.
I suppose the only thing I can think of are our easter eggs. The game will certainly have its fair share of them and players will have to keep an eye out because some are quite mysterious.
I remember you saying you hoped to get the game out by early 2014. Are there any chances of a delay?
There’s always a chance for delay because game development is erratic but we’ll do our best to make the goal!
How likely is it that A Hat in Time will make its way to Wii U and what hurdles stand in the way? I remember you saying the game would need a publisher to make it to Wii U — why is that?
As we explained in the Wii U update post on Kickstarter, we are discussing deals with several publishers who have approached us. These negotiations take time as we want the best deal for us. We’re using the Unreal Engine which requires the purchase of a license to port it to consoles and it can be very costly. For now we want to use the money to focus on a PC version but a publisher can help us because they have access to a license we can use.
Obviously you guys are gamers. So what do you think it is about video games that sets it apart from other mediums?
The ability to experience these journeys and adventures firsthand is something that makes games stand out from movies and books. It’s also interesting to see the impact it has on each player because a game can be played differently each time and I find that fascinating. Games like Zelda: Majora’s Mask had a big impact on my life and taught me many things about the world we live in so we’re hoping A Hat in Time will leave its mark on the next generation of gamers and maybe someday we’ll have a game that revives the Hat in Time genre!
I’ll leave you with one final question. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Super Mario 64 both brought two legendary franchises into the third dimension in an era from which you clearly have drawn so much inspiration. Personally, which of the two do you prefer?
I cannot choose because they are both very different from each other and offer unique gameplay and experiences. (Personally I’m more of a Majora’s Mask fan hehe.)
So it looks like the revival of the 3D collectathon platformer known as A Hat in Time will still be coming out on at least PC early next year and hopefully on the Wii U at some point as well. I hope you enjoyed this exclusive interview with Gears for Breakast’s Williem T. Nicholls, and make sure you follow this project because it should be a good one!
Now tell us what you thought of the interview and what you think of A Hat in Time overall in the comments!
A Hat in Time is an upcoming indie platformer that hopes to hearken back to the days of the vibrant 3D platformers of yesteryear like Super Mario 64 and Banjo-Kazooie. It’s being funded through Kickstarter and has massively outdone its minimal funding goal of $30,000, now having accrued over $200,000. Originally, A Hat in Time had nine stretch goals, ranging from developer commentary at $40,000 to “Hat Kid’s Spaceship Hub” at $200,000. But now the ninth goal has been reached, so what reason is there to keep funding it?
Well, I’m glad you asked. Once A Hat in Time reached its $200,000 stretch goal, Gears for Breakfast, the studio developing the game, revealed one final stretch goal. For every $15,000 after $200,000, Grant Kirkhope, composer for Banjo-Kazooie, GoldenEye 007, Donkey Kong 64, and many other classic titles, will write one new tune for A Hat in Time.
The Kickstarter phenomenon A Hat in Time has a lot going for it. Recently the project was able to convince Grant Kirkhope, the composer of GoldenEye 007 and Banjo-Kazooie, to write a song for the game as one of the developer’s stretch goals. Up to this point we’ve only seen footage from the earlier segments of the game. Now we’re moving away from the Mafia filled metropolis into a creepy natural setting.
Gears for Breakfast, the developer behind the game, has recently unveiled the second chapter of A Hat in Time with full commentary! The segment is called the Subcon Forest and is full of collectibles. There’s even a character named Tim, who is the CEO of Time. Of course, the developers are not unveiling all the details yet.
For those of you that don’t know about A Hat In Time, allow me to enlighten you.
A Hat In Time is a collect-a-thon platformer being developed by indie developer Gears for Breakfast. This beautiful-looking game looks to bring back the magic of collecting things (totally unexpected, right?) while exploring vast worlds. Influenced by classic platformers like Banjo-Kazooie and Super Mario 64, A Hat In Time is the developers’ way of invoking that exciting feeling of exploration. The plot is simple: time is falling apart and it is the job of the brave interstellar-travelling Hat Kid to collect all of the time pieces and put them back together! But watch out, you’re in a race against the evil Mustache Girl who wants to use time for evil! Using old-school platforming as the foundation of the game, A Hat In Time looks to be a promising indie title and can be found (and supported) right on its Kickstarter page!
Currently having $140,000+ pledged, goals that have already been reached include a co-op mode, full voice acting, and 2 whole bonus chapters! Not to mention, one possible goal includes a musical piece composed by Grant Kirkhope, the genius behind Banjo-Kazooie‘s awesome soundtrack!
Recently, Gears for Breakfast announced, along with some other updates, that a possible Wii U release for A Hat In Time is under consideration! A definite answer has yet to be given, but the developers have been sure to keep backers and anticipating gamers informed:
Keep in mind that there are several hurdles we must overcome before the game can be put on the Wii U. Firstly we must obtain a license for the Unreal Engine, and it’s been known to cost $500,000 and up, then we must apply to Nintendo to get access to their development kits which are necessary to port the game over to the Wii U. This is why we are talking to publishers as hopefully they can give us access to their development kit as well as licenses in return for a share of the games income.
Personally, I can’t stress enough how excited I am for the game; the whole project itself just seems really cool and the fact that Grant Kirkhope could be creating a tune for the game makes me even more anxious.
What do you think about A Hat In Time? If it became a Wii U game, would you be interested in playing it? Share your thoughts down below!