Friday, January 17, 2014

Dinosaur Train Goes Mobile!

One thing I love about working on web games is that you get to write lots of blog posts about how you've just finished something because web games tend to a have a pretty quick turn-around compared to the console games I used to work on. So, today, it's my pleasure to write another one!

We've had the pleasure, over the last 6 months, to work with the PBS Kids and Jim Henson folks on several titles related to the Dinosaur Train property. They're moving into the HTML5 realm and we got to be a small part of that and learned a lot about dinosaurs and time-traveling trains along the way.

There were several parts to the project, so here's a breakdown:

I wish the river rafting trips I went on had whirlpools like that!
  • River Run - The newest Dinosaur Train game. This one is based on the latest season of Dinosaur Train in which the Dinosaurs go on various adventures at Adventure Camp. In River Run players join Don and Buddy as they paddle down river in search of bugs for Don's collection. Player's can play single or multiplayer taking on the role of Don or Buddy competing to see who can find the most bugs. I'll probably put up another post talking more about this game, but until then, you can try it out here.
You would think they could make the path to the convention center a little less...maze-like.
  • Buddy's Amazing Adventure ported to HTML5 - Buddy's Amazing Adventure is an example of a great existing title created by the nice folks at Fablevision that we reworked in HTML5 so mobile users could play it too. I think Derek did a great job of recreating the experience and users will be hard pressed to find the difference between the Flash and HTML5 versions. If you want to try to find the difference visit this link on mobile and desktop devices. The mobile version is ours, while the desktop version will load Fablevision's original version.
Prehistory's nemesis to a well-washed car.
  • Field Guide ported to HTML5 - The Field Guide is essentially a giant dinosaur encyclopedia. We took the existing Flash version and ported it to HTML5. Along the way, we learned a whole lot of dinosaur facts by osmosis (Did you know Quetzalcoatlus had a wingspan of 36 feet? That's crazy!). You can check it out here.
Even Giganotosaurus needs his moment in the spotlight.
  • Mobile Website - PBS Kids already has an excellent desktop friendly Dinosaur Train website, but they didn't have a version that worked on mobile devices. So, we put together a site for mobile users. PBS Kids automatically redirects traffic to the correct page, so if you're on a mobile device, that link up there will take you to the mobile site we designed.
We hope you'll take some time to explore some of our recent creations and leave us some feedback. Have fun!