After several long months of crafting, polishing and fine-tuning, Ramps 1.1 is finally released into the wild. We couldn’t be more excited!
Once you update Ramps from the App Store, you’ll find 100 new levels containing 300 new challenges, nine achievements, two new leaderboards and six unlockable balls! We even have two new tracks from Essa… they’re riffs on his previous light world compositions and they sound amazing!
We’ve heard from some players that they wanted more challenging levels to conquer. Inspired by one of our favorite Super Meat Boy design elements, we decided to create alternate dark worlds to compliment the existing light worlds. These new versions of the 100 original levels contain new challenges and gameplay mechanics we think you’ll really dig!
We didn’t just add new content, though—we also added Superball!
Superball can grab some extra air time while becoming invulnerable to whatever baddies may stand in its way. This only lasts a short time, and can only be used once per ball, so make sure you use your Superball juice wisely. Transforming into Superball is easy: just tap and hold anywhere on the screen!
Doing a major update also gave us a chance to catch up on some housekeeping. We improved the usability of several aspects of the game. For example, when you are in a scrollable level, there’s now a GO! button that travels with you as you scroll, so you never have to scroll back to the dispenser to spawn a new ball. If that ball dies, you’ll snap right back to where you left off.
We also redesigned the help screens to be simpler and easier to scale. As we add even more cool stuff, it will be a lot easier for us to show you how it works, and quicker for you to get back to the action!
Oh yeah, one more thing…
Buried deep within Ramps, where only the most skilled players can find them (Hint: you’ve gotta complete everything), there are unlockable tributes to two of our favorite iOS games: The Incident and Wispin! The developers of these fine titles were gracious enough to give us permission to pay homage to their characters. We continue to admire and be inspired by their contributions to touch gaming.
We’re so excited about our new release and we really hope you enjoy all the new content. Soon, we’ll have another big announcement for you regarding our plans for a… ahem… larger screen.
And.. one more one more thing…
For just a few short days, we are offering Ramps on sale for just $.99! Now is a fantastic time to check it out!
We hope you enjoyed our little April Fools Joke. If you’ve never heard of the Nokia N-Gage, please take a moment to educate yourself.
Do rest assured that we have been keeping busy on Ramps 1.1. What we’re sharing here is a peek (the smallest possible) at a major new addition.
All we can tell you is… a mysterious portal has appeared!
Tim and I continue to be astounded by the success of Ramps for iPhone and iPod Touch. Tens of thousands of players have spent over a combined decade playing the game. As happy as we are with that audience, our inbox shows that there are many more players on other platforms waiting for their chance to play.
We’ve received hundreds of emails suggesting a Ramps port for just about every smartphone platform. Android and Windows Phone 7 have been particularly popular requests but, going on email volume alone, one suggestion dramatically outperformed all others.
That’s why Tim and I are elated to announce that Ramps will soon be available for the Nokia N-Gage QD handheld!
We knew it would be painful for N-Gage users to go Ramps-less as long as they did, but we think you’ll find it worth the wait; the N-Gage QD is truly the perfect platform for this title. Even if you’ve already purchased and enjoyed Ramps for iOS, we think you’ll find a lot to love in the N-Gage version.
The first thing you’ll notice is that Ramps for N-Gage features 100% more tangible controls than its iOS predecessor. Solving puzzles is as easy as 1, 2, 3:
- Use the d-pad to move the cursor to the editable ramp point you’d like to manipulate.
- Press 5 to select the point, then use the d-pad to make your adjustment.
- If you’d like to adjust other editable points, press 5 again to exit editing mode for the current selection. Otherwise, press 7 to dispense the ball!
We’ve cut the width of Ramps levels down 50% to accommodate the N-Gage’s unique 208 x 176 pixel display (retina if played from a distance of 48 inches or greater). Shorter levels means faster play, which means you’ll have more time for work, school and leisure activities.
Essa’s catchy soundtrack has never sounded clearer than in crisp 16kHz mono, and with the N-Gage’s built-in Bluetooth radio, you can easily transfer bitmap images of your achievements to a PC to share with friends on MySpace or your favorite newsgroup!
Shortly after ESRB finishes rating the game’s content, Ramps will debut in your local Electronics Boutique or Cingular Wireless outlet for the low price of $34.99. We think it will be regarded as the quintessential version of our little app.
I just checked our analytics this morning, and noticed that we passed the one millionth game played in just under three months of being on the App Store. We have now surpassed the number of times the original Ramps for Flash was played in its three years of life on the web, and that version was free!
Thank you friends for playing our game, for continuing to play it, and for loving it as much as we do.
We have so much more in store for you this year, and can’t wait to share more!
Tim and I will give a talk on the making of Ramps on Thursday, May 26 at the WebVisions conference.
The fast-paced, fifteen-minute session is just one of a zillion awesome talks at this year’s two-day event (three if you’ve signed up for a workshop). Register before April 5 to nab the early bird rate!
The full session description:
GO! How Two Guys Made a Successful iPhone Game and Lived to Tell the Tale
Time: Thu May 26, 11:45 am – 12:00 pm
At over 300,000 applications and growing, the iOS App Store is a thriving platform. But with great size comes great competition, especially in the coveted “Games” category. In this session, Backabit co-founders Tyler Sticka and Tim Sears explain how they took their first iOS game, Ramps, from student project to app store success. You’ll learn how they built the game without disrupting their full-time jobs, how they facilitated a successful design/development collaboration, what they’d do differently their second time around and lessons learned along the way.
Ramps (based on Tyler’s award-winning Flash game of the same name), was selected by Apple as an “iPhone Game of the Week,” ranking highly in the US App Store Top 10. It’s been played over a million times since its debut. Ramps has received numerous positive reviews from publications like IGN, Slide to Play, Appmodo and Download Squad. Apple called the game “a simple and stylish physics puzzler you won’t want to put down.”
For more info, visit the rockem’ sockem’ WebVisions site. We hope to see you there!