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Last week Liz & Dave headed to San Francisco to demo Bigfoot Hunter in the Indie Prize Showcase, pitch the game in the Pocket Gamer Big Indie Pitch -- and Dave even found time to speak on Game Jam methodologies at Casual Connect!

Monday, we pitched Bigfoot Hunter to an awesome panel of judges including journalists, game critics, and Samsung. Bigfoot Hunter got 2nd place, with The Phantom Pi (an awesome iOS game that launched last week, which you should check out) coming in 1st. 


Get the whole Very Big Indie Pitch SF recap on Pocket Gamer!

Tuesday morning we set up shop in the Indie Prize Showcase to demo Bigfoot Hunter next to an awesome team from Toronto, Skunwerks Kinetic, who were demoing a very cool multiplayer iOS title, MEG: RVO!

Indie Prize

Liz Demoing

We had a blast demoing Bigfoot Hunter, getting feedback on the game, and seeing people's reactions when they first spin around trying to capture Bigfoot on camera! We met a few devoted 'squatch fans, and quite a few Pokemon Snap fanatics. We were this close to winning the audience choice award. Thanks to everyone who voted for Bigfoot Hunter with their Indie Prize stickers!

The Indie Prize Showcase awards ceremony was quite the spectacle -- as part of the App Annie + Upsight after party, City Hall made an incredible back drop for some well deserved Indie Awards. We earned a nomination in the Best Family Friendly Game Category!

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Not too shabby, San Francisco City Hall! 

Back at Casual Connect USA 2014, Dave spoke on the Indies track about using Game Jam Methodologies to unlock the true creative potential of game design on mobile devices. We've only just begun to tap the potential of the hardware, and here at The Tap Lab we're campaigning for more interesting uses of mobile's unique abilities, from location to AR, VR, second screen and more.

Here's Dave's presentation on using game jam methodologies to innovate like an indie studio! 

Game Jam Junkies - Casual Connect SF from Dave Bisceglia

We had a blast in San Francisco -- it was Liz's first time in the city! -- saw a bunch of old friends, made new ones, won a few prizes, and got some great feedback on Bigfoot Hunter. Thanks to everyone who made it so memorable!

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The Boston Games Forum is really taking off thanks to the tireless leadership of Rohit Crasta. Dave had the chance to speak on game design earlier this month to an awesome audience of both experienced and aspiring game designers and developers at a Games Forum Deep Dive!

Last time we were in Microsoft's awesome headquarters at 1 Cambridge Center, it was for the Games Forum Playtest Party, a gathering of indie studios, gamers, families and students and a great opportunity for us and other developers to get player feedback in person (and spread the word about Bigfoot Hunter)! 

You can find out what awesome madness the Boston Games Forum is up to next on their Meetup page!

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When Dave set out to cover the topic of Universal Design Lessons, he knew he had a pretty daunting task ahead of him -- so the very first (and possibly most important) lesson was that there's simply no such thing as universal design. Ultimately, it depends, but the lessons he laid out formed a super useful overview of game design best practices that apply to almost any game, regardless of platform.

Dave pulled from a lot of mobile games that serve as a great example of powerful game design -- Clash of Clans, Temple Run, Fruit Ninja, Monument Valley, Tiny Wings... From prototyping & playtesting to focusing on the FTUE, not baking text into assets, not hiding purchase options in the store menu and always aiming to show more than you tell, these best practices go a long way towards bringing your game into awesome territory.

If you missed it, fear not. You can check out the slides and video from the talk below:

Universal Design Lessons - Boston Games Forum from Dave Bisceglia

A big thanks to Rohit and the Games Forum for fostering the Boston gaming community in a big way. If you have any feedback on the content of Dave's talk, want to add a few lessons or just want to talk game design, get in touch at info@thetaplab.com :)

When Dave's not sharing his experience at the Games Forum, Casual Connect, PAX East and more, he's hunting Bigfoot non stop here at The Tap Lab! Sign up below to find out when our new game, Bigfoot Hunter, is on the loose on iOS!

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We're so excited to be selected for the Casual Connect Indie Prize Showcase in San Francisco next month!

Indie Prize Usa Blog Szie

We'll be demoing Bigfoot Hunter alongside other awesome indie games like Pathogen, Cypher, Nomosaurus and even our Intrepid Labs neighbor, The Counting Kingdom, an awesome learning game by our friend Jenna at Boston Indies :) 

Liz & Dave will be in San Francisco this July to share the game with attendees. If you're in the Bay Area, keep your eyes peeled! Who knows, there may be a few Bigfoot sightings to report.

Are you in Boston tomorrow?

Join us at the first ever Games Forum Playtest Party to play the latest version of Bigfoot Hunter and 40+ other awesome Indie Games from local developers! RSVP Here.

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