“Simply Chess” – now free to play on Steam!

Our fourth game, “Simply Chess” is now available on Steam!
Chess on Steam

It’s just what it sounds like: Chess! We wanted to stick to the basics, but to provide a ton of play modes: local multiplayer, pass-n-play, 100 Levels of AI powered by the Stockfish engine, online play, and async play (correspondence chess) w/Steam Notifications. We are also striving to make it widely accessible, so we’ve released on Windows, Mac, and Linux simultaneously and we support keyboard/mouse/gamepad interchangeably at any time.

We launched it just less than a week ago and were immediately surprised by the amount of traffic it got. In one day, it had doubled the number of downloads that our previous best-selling game has gotten in 1.5 years!

With this army of 10’s of thousands of testers, the community was able to find a ton of bugs and feature-improvements so we’ve been pushing a bunch of updates nonstop! Steam handles the upgrade-process so new versions only require downloading about as many bytes as you download when you hit a website… so we’re releasing quite often.

The way this game works: all features are totally free! After you’ve played a couple of games, you’ll get a 7 second cross-promotion before each new match. The cross-promotions are just ads for one of the other three digital tabletop games that BlueLine has released on Steam. If you’d rather not see the cross-promotions or want to send us a couple of bucks as a thank-you for the game: you can upgrade to Premium for $4.99 and you won’t see the cross promotion again.

Also, as a special thanks to our loyal fans… if you own all three of our other games, we will be updating the game so that you don’t see ads (basically: you get Premium for free).

We just want to say thank you to everyone who’s been playing & who has given us feedback on the game! It’s been a wild week and we’re expecting to cross the 100,000 downloads mark today!

Our next game: Reversi!

Reversi
About a month and a half ago, we released Khet 2.0 on Steam. After a few updates (fixes & new features) then last weeks release of the ‘Eye of Horus’ Beam Splitter expansion… we’re spending part of our time on our next game: Reversi!

It will be on Steam and we plan to support PC, Mac, and Linux at launch & we currently have no plans for any DLC.

If you’ve been following along on our @BlueLineGames twitter account, this might not be a huge surprise to you. We were tweeting a picture of our passing unit-tests in mid-summer. Yup, while we were ironing out the details of the licensing on Khet, we did about a month of work on Reversi! So we’re off to a great head-start.

As an indie-dev, releasing a game in the middle of the holiday season seems a bit quixotic, so we’re not going to rush it. In parallel, we’ll be doing upgrades to add new features to our engine – which will benefit Reversi as well as our already-released games Hive and Khet 2.0.

Some may be wondering about why we’re going with the classic “Reversi” name rather than the more modern licensed name. Honestly, we like the newer name & the community that’s been built around it. We spent months chasing after that license and we want to (and think we may) get it one day. In the meantime… Reversi! 🙂

Hive is coming to Steam! Pre-order now for 30% off!

We are downright giddy to announce… Hive is coming to Steam! It’ll be the same great game as on Xbox, but will have a few extra bonuses:

  • Game will track over 40 stats on Steam and you can earn 30+ Steam Achievements.
  • There will be 2 new levels of AI. Since even low-end PCs are typically a lot more powerful than Xbox 360s (because those are now quite old) this gives an opportunity to have the AI make much, much better moves in the same amount of thinking-time.
  • Seamlessly switch between using your mouse/keyboard or playing with a gamepad.

The first release will be on PC, but we hope to release it on both Mac and Linux soon afterward. Buying the game means you’ll get a Steam key once the game is released. This will allow you to play on any/all of the platforms once each platform is available (eg: if you buy now, you can play on PC as soon as that’s released and you do not have to re-buy it to play on Mac when the Mac version comes out).

To give a better deal to our loyal fans, we’re offering a 30% discount on pre-orders! Get it below using the Humble Widget (powered by the “Humble Bundle” team):

If you can’t see the widget above, you can click this link to pre-order Hive. Have an old computer? If you’re worried about compatibility, please check the minimum requirements on the Steam Store page (scroll down a bit or search for ‘System Requirements’).

UPDATE: You can now buy this game on Steam ‘Early Access’ which will let you play the incomplete beta immediately, and you will automatically be upgraded to the full version once it is released. Please click ‘add to card’ on the Hive page on Steam.

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Announcing our next game: Khet 2.0 for Xbox 360!

Khet 2.0
Keeping up with the exciting pace of this year so far… we have an awesome announcement to make:

BlueLine Game Studios has been given an exclusive license to bring the extremely popular Khet 2.0 board game to Xbox!

Khet 2.0 is an Egyptian-themed two-player game with real lasers. It has been growing in popularity world-wide, and has a successful iPhone/iPad version.

The game is already well into development, and we are using the same board game engine that we wrote while making Hive for Xbox. The Xbox version of Khet 2.0 is planned to have single-player (against AI), local multiplayer, pass-n-play (if you only have one controller), online multiplayer, full 3D graphics & camera-control, a global highscores list… and frickin’ lasers!

If you want to be notified when the game goes into Alpha/Beta testing or for the final release, please sign up for the BlueLine Games “Release Announcements” mailing list.

New game: Proximity!

BlueLine’s first game release is Proximity for the Pokki platform!Proximity HTML5 game.

We’re still hard at work on our larger project, Hive for Xbox 360, but we took about a week and a half aside to make Proximity. The game was an entry for the Pokki 1UP contest which is currently going on.

Proximity is a territory-based abstract strategy game – like Chess… or Hive ;). You place colored tiles with a number of armies on them and try to conquer the surrounding territories. Also: the tiles are hexagons (we may be obsessed).

The game currently supports single-player vs. AI (the AI is pretty decent) and local multiplayer.

Pokki is a platform which wraps HTML5 apps and makes them downloadable and automatcially-upgrading & has an app-store. The contest is to make a game for the platform using HTML5 and other web-standards (flash is forbidden). There are 3 judged awards and a people’s choice award which goes to the app with the most active players by the end of the competition.

Please go download and play Proxmity! 🙂

So far, most of the feedback is along these lines:

  • It’s maybe a bit too addictive
  • Are those numbers really random?
  • Oh, you can click the squirrel! 😀

Please let us know what you think of the game in the comments!

Proximity with Military skin

Proximity with Pokki skin

Proximity with Portal skin

Announcing our first game: Hive for Xbox 360!

We’re buzzing with excitement for this announcement…

BlueLine Game Studios has been given an exclusive license to bring the extremely popular Hive boardgame to Xbox!

If you’re not familiar with it yet, Hive is a boardgame that’s grown a huge following.  It was created by British Inventor John Yianni of Gen42 Games.  In his own words:

Hive is a board game with a difference. There is no board! The pieces are added to the playing area thus creating the board. As more and more pieces are added the game becomes a fight to see who can be the first to capture the opposing Queen Bee.

Hive for Xbox 360The gameplay is really easy to pick up, but just like chess the possibilities in gameplay are endless.  This makes it great for starting right up with family, friends, and roommates but complex enough to give even the sharpest minds a challenge for years to come.  …and I really do mean that: the geniuses at American Mensa saw fit to give Hive the prestigious Mensa Select award!

I think the versatility has a lot to do with why Hive has become such a worldwide favorite.  People really go nuts for this game… in this fan gallery (all 42 pages of it) you can see pictures of people playing in front of the Great Pyramids, using hand-made sets, next to a pool, at the bottom of a pool, on the ocean floor (seriously), and pretty-much anywhere at any time.

We’ve already begun development and we think we have some great ideas on how to work with Gen42 Games to bring a great version of this game to the Xbox 360 …and we would love to hear your thoughts too.  So if you’re a Hive fan, pipe up in the comments! 🙂

If you’re as excited as we are, sign up to be notified when the game launches!

Update: As of Feb 8th, 2013 – Hive is now available on Xbox 360!