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Ska Studios

Charlie Murder title update now live
5 years ago

Charlie Murder title update now live

Ska Studio’s excellent RPG brawler Charlie Murder recently received a title update. The patch notes for the 400 KB download were posted on the game studios’ blog:

Ska Studios talks Charlie Murder patch
5 years ago

Ska Studios talks Charlie Murder patch

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Ska Studios revealed the state of the next Charlie Murder patch via a quick little Facebook post on its page. The studio says that all of the “easy” fixes are complete …
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Microsoft reveals huge list of new ID@Xbox partners
5 years ago

Microsoft reveals huge list of new ID@Xbox partners

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ID@Xbox

Microsoft has announced that over 200 developers are working on titles for the Xbox One via its ID@Xbox initiative and has released the names of 65 of these developers that are joining the 32 developers they already announced back in December.

Some of the highlights in the list include The Behemoth, developers of the extremely popular Castle Crashers and BattleBlock Theater; Playdead, the developers of eerie XBLA title LIMBO; Ska Studios, the team behind the beautifully violent games Charlie Murder and The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile; Warhorse Studios, the developers behind the highly successful Kickstarter Kingdom Come: Deliverance; and Zoë Mode, the developers of Powerstar Golf.

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Ska Studios working on Charlie Murder title update for XBLA
6 years ago

Ska Studios working on Charlie Murder title update for XBLA

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Ska Studios’ Michelle Juett Silva and James Silva spoke recently (via PlayXBLA) about the upcoming title update for the popular Summer of Arcade game, Charlie Murder. The update primarily serves to …
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More than a tambourine hero: Charlie Murder’s Kelly
6 years ago

More than a tambourine hero: Charlie Murder’s Kelly

There’s a scene in Ska Studios’ Charlie Murder in which the members of the titular punk rock group do what rock stars do best. No, they don’t rock out, though the game does dedicates several scenes to just that. During the scene in question, the band does the rock star thing and tears apart a hotel room. The rambunctious five behave the way we’ve all come to expect rock stars to behave: irresponsibly. Furniture is destroyed, a mattress gets kicked, hell is raised.

So what, right? That’s all standard rock star fare, and it fits right into a game that celebrates nearly every aspect of the (undead) punk rocker lifestyle. That little mattress-kicking bit, though, well, that seems to have upset at least a few game critics. It’s not so much that the mattress is being kicked that caused the issue, but it’s the individual doing the kicking and the role she plays in the game on the whole that caused some reviewers to be put-off by the character.

The character is Kelly “Skelekitten” Skitten, and she spends most of the hotel scene meagerly kicking at a mattress while the rest of the band — which itself raises from hell in the game’s opening scene — raises hell. Eventually, a male member of the band walks over and does the job of destroying the mattress that Skitten apparently could not accomplish on her own. I noticed it while playing through Charlie Murder for review, but I thought it merely a harmless joke about a woman who looks to weigh all of 90 pounds not being capable of destroying a mattress by kicking it. Another critic felt differently.

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Charlie Murder review (XBLA)
6 years ago

Charlie Murder review (XBLA)

Charlie Murder was developed by Ska Studios and published by Microsoft Game Studios. It was released August 14, 2013 for 800 MSP. A copy was provided for review purposes.

Charlie Murder

Charlie murders. Charlie — in concert with the other members of the band of his namesake — brutally, bloodily murders undead and demonic foes by the score. Oh, he also skateboards, puts on concerts, drops acid, flies on a broomstick and does a whole bunch of other crazy crap. Mostly, though, Charlie murders. He makes a point of stomping on downed adversaries’ defenseless faces, sending their eyeballs and somehow-still-intact brains flying out of the noggins that contained them only a second earlier. He shoots, he slashes, he bludgeons, he punches — he murders. Such wanton destruction might prompt another round of those discussions as to whether or not those damn video games the kids play really have gotten too violent, whether or not they really are rotting gamers’ brains (at least they have the good courtesy to leave them in their respective noggins). It might do that, but it shouldn’t. It shouldn’t do that because the death and dismemberment is all so outrageous, so ridiculous, so…hilarious, that no one should take any of it seriously.

Absurdity is never in short supply in Charlie Murder. The two-person team of James Silva and Michelle Juett-Silva have distributed it with liberally enough here that Charlie Murder crashes right through genre convention, and, for the most part, keeps on rockin’. Silva once commented to XBLAFans that he had no need for a design document. It wasn’t entirely clear at the time how serious he was about that statement, but it’s obvious now that there was at least some truth to his words. It’s impossible to believe that anyone at Microsoft told the Silvas what they could and could not do when designing their game. In fact, it’s hard to believe that they themselves were even capable of as much. Yes, the tried-and-true brawler staples are all here, but so are myriad off-the-wall ideas that somehow come together in a way that (usually) works. Charlie Murder isn’t the first brawler to load up on crazy — but it is one of the best.

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Fan ports The Dishwasher to PC, developer shrugs

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A Russian programmer known as Barabus is a big fan of the indie-hit-gone-arcade hack ‘n’ slash The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile, so much so that he took it upon himself …
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Summer of Arcade 2013 titles announced
6 years ago

Summer of Arcade 2013 titles announced

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While the E3 spotlight may be on the Xbox One, plenty is still happening on XBLA with today’s announcement of 2013’s Summer of Arcade lineup. The titles include Charlie …
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Charlie Murder launch trailer promises summer gore
6 years ago

Charlie Murder launch trailer promises summer gore

Action-RPG brawler Charlie Murder got it’s official Xbox Marketplace listing this week and to celebrate, Ska Studios have released a brand new trailer. The game from the developers behind …
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What do developers want from the next-gen XBLA?
6 years ago

What do developers want from the next-gen XBLA?

Tomorrow at 10 am PDT, Microsoft will likely tell us all some things we already know. The Xbox creator will also tell us plenty that we don’t already know. Some rumors will probably be proven true, others false. New games and features will be discussed and, in some cases, shown. Ultimately, the curtain is going to fall on Microsoft’s event before the public hears everything it wants to hear. Microsoft is only going to tease us, with a more complete showing of all its console plans for the years ahead not coming until the console holder’s traditional pre-E3 media briefing on June 10.

But tomorrow we will know something we don’t know today. We’ll know something about what direction Microsoft plans to steer the Xbox brand in over the course of the next generation. Sitting here right now, I can honestly say that I know nothing more than any other gamer who’s followed the supposed leaks over the past few years knows about what we’re going to see tomorrow. Rather than make educated guesses about what might be shown tomorrow and at E3, XBLAFans is following up last week’s look at how developers feel about XBLA as it currently stands by having them speak about where they want to see it go in the next generation.

During PAX East this past March, we cornered six game developers and asked them one question: If you could change any one thing or add any one feature to the next-generation version of Xbox Live Arcade, what would it be?

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