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Thread: You guys still have my soul

  1. #1
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    You guys still have my soul

    Wasn't that the joke back in the old days? Massassi has your soul and you can never leave? Well I just wanna say it's true, because I am still drawn to this place, even after getting married, having kids, etc etc. I joined the community around 2000, and my last post was in 2013... and still I'm here because you guys won't give me back my soul! No soul refunds I suppose, but it's worth it.

    But seriously, this place has had the biggest impact on me, and I gotta say, showing my daughter random JK levels I used to love and exploring them together is the best feeling. I actually got a hold of Brian to just tell him thanks for making this place, and he reset my old account's password and invited me to share some stuff I made recently.

    Long story short, I'm a full-time indie game developer who used to work at The VOID, a location-based VR company based out of Utah. I helped make Secrets of the Empire, with my contributions being texture and avatar work (lemme tell you, I think one finger on the Stormtrooper models had more polys than the entire JK stormtrooper 3DO). It was wild talking to the people at Lucasfilm and helping make an imperial base, because in some ways it felt just like JK editing. I felt like a kid again!

    Eventually my side project took off, which was a 3rd person exploration game about a fox called The First Tree. I was eventually able to publish on console, and it made enough money for me to quit my job. It still blows my mind that this is real... and it's all because of the passion and determination which started right here on this website. I love that everything is still up and running here, because it holds a special place in my heart and I love revisiting it.

    Anyway, I made a video about Massassi. It's a retrospective on my JK editing career. It's kinda self-deprecating in a funny way, but I wanted to encourage other game developers and tell them that it's a long road to get good at something. I still feel like I suck at all this, but you just keep going and learning and improving, and eventually... you realize you've somewhat "arrived".

    Here's the video: https://youtu.be/ciMdRTI5KwE

    P.S. I'd love to give away keys for The First Tree to any Massassian who wants it. I just need a platform and the region you live in, and I'll PM one to you.
    "I'm afraid of OC'ing my video card. You never know when Ogre Calling can go terribly wrong."

  2. #2
    Likes Kittens. Eats Fluffies
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    12,235
    Welcome back!

    I saw a bit of The First Tree gameplay. Was that really all you? Amazing! And congratulations on its success.

  3. #3
    Likes Kittens. Eats Fluffies
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    Wait, started watching the video and I take back my positive comments.

    "Mizz-ass-ee" temple. You're dead to me, brother.

  4. #4
    Likes Kittens. Eats Fluffies
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  5. #5
    Likes Kittens. Eats Fluffies
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    The video is quite charming, by the way. Nice positive message for neophyte game devs. Good work!

  6. #6
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    Lol I forgot about the pronunciation holy war here as well. Thanks for watching!

  7. #7
    Whoa, hi, and congrats on your achievements! I'm gonna have to check the video out later - hopefully it mentions BoaMSE and Leeza's Destiny 3, IMO still the very best JK engine creations of all time ever-and-more.

  8. #8
    Nice, I saw your GDC presentation on Youtube the other day. I'd love to play your game with my kids. Do you have Gog keys or only Steam? I'm in Germany.

  9. #9
    Welcome back!
    I've always wanted to go to the Void, but it hasn't been in the budget. I'd love to play The First Tree, I've been curious about it for a while. Finding out it was made by a guy from Massassi is pretty surreal. I live in Utah.
    Last edited by Phantom-Seraph; 07-15-2020 at 04:35 PM. Reason: Did I mention that I'm from Utah? Because I am.

  10. #10
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    1,081
    A Utah Massassian, awesome! I grew up in Virginia but now I'm here in Orem. It's nice... love the mountains.

  11. #11
    Hey, man, I really appreciate your posts here. I doubt we ever crossed paths on the forum, I'm probably somewhat controversial on this board, but I think it's awesome you're checking back in. Hell, your posts got me out of bed to do some replies on the PC tonight. I can see myself definitely wanting to pick your brain on a few topics.

    Congratulations on your success and happiness and thanks so much for checking back in to this small internet community. I have a feeling your doing so will inspire at least a few among us.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  12. #12
    Most successful Massassian ever
    Posts
    1,081
    Yeah, I love checking in! So glad this place is still here. I actually recognize most of the names here like your own, but I was such a lurker (still am actually) so I don't know everyone that well.
    "I'm afraid of OC'ing my video card. You never know when Ogre Calling can go terribly wrong."

  13. #13
    Admiral of Awesome
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    18,567
    I'll be honest, when I saw the title for your GDC talk I was expecting a just-do-it environment art pep talk.

  14. #14
    Registered User
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    6
    *taps on the soul box*

  15. #15
    I could've sworn Jim had more posts. Guess he's so good that he didn't need that many to get all souls.
    Sorry for the lousy German

  16. #16
    Registered User
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    funny story about that... the email tied to DrkJedi82 went away and i got logged out and couldn't for the life of me remember the password... reset password doesn't work if you can't access the email

  17. #17
    Human Computer
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    2,838
    I actually came here to post the video that Whelly posted above but he beat me to it. It popped up in my YouTube feed this morning and I was showing it to my daughter, and reminiscing about when I used to create multiplayer levels for JKDF2. Congratulations on The First Tree. I'd love a key for the Switch (USA) if you're still offering.
    ? :)

  18. #18
    I just played through the game. Very sweet. I could barely beat the ninjas cutting all the onions.
    Sorry for the lousy German

  19. #19
    This video is awesome man! I was at the texturing talk for Secrets of the Empire at GDC and got to play it in Glendale at one point. Cool to know there was a Massassian on that project. (I think Makkon/Ben Hale who was at ILMxLAB also used to be a user on Massassi or some other JO forum? I can't really remember).

    The First Tree looks adorable, if you've still got keys I'd love one for PS4.

  20. #20
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thrawn[numbarz] View Post
    This video is awesome man! I was at the texturing talk for Secrets of the Empire at GDC and got to play it in Glendale at one point. Cool to know there was a Massassian on that project. (I think Makkon/Ben Hale who was at ILMxLAB also used to be a user on Massassi or some other JO forum? I can't really remember).
    Oh man, Ben Hale! I know him pretty well, he's an awesome talented guy. We worked at The Void together then he got snatched up by ILMxLAB so he moved to San Francisco. Was he on these forums? Was he into Jedi Outcast editing only? Crazy stuff.

  21. #21
    Massassi will always have a special place in my heart, even 20 years later.

    I remember the old threaded forum also, where I was GA_Farrant. Is the interactive story concluded?

    I hope my son who is now 7 can find a place like I did at 13.

    Whelly, Did you just recently do a video with Thomas Brush? It was great!

    Edit: lol, I just clicked on my profile, it's like a snapshot of the past.
    Last edited by Magi_Cabaalis; 07-24-2020 at 05:27 PM.

  22. #22
    Child's Play CharityBlockyness Rocks!
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    2,960
    @Whelly - your JK editing retrospective was thoroughly enjoyable to watch. I played the hell out of your later levels on the Zone and this brought back all of the feels. I'm sure the majority of your audience has no idea what Jedi Knight even is, so it was awesome to see you pay homage to the game that got you started. I'd love to see more members of the old community make videos like this, it brought back a ton of memories and it was interesting to see how your childhood so closely mirrored my own. Cheers!
    Author of the JK levels:
    Sand Trap & Sand Trap (Night)


  23. #23
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    1,081
    Thanks guys! Magi_Cabaalis, yep did a video with Thomas, he's a good guy! I went the JK editing route, he went the Flash games route making tons of stuff for Newgrounds as a kid.

    Dark__Knight, can't believe someone remembers playing my levels! Feelsgoodman

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Whelly View Post
    Oh man, Ben Hale! I know him pretty well, he's an awesome talented guy. We worked at The Void together then he got snatched up by ILMxLAB so he moved to San Francisco. Was he on these forums? Was he into Jedi Outcast editing only? Crazy stuff.
    I wish I could say for sure--I'm certain he was on a forum I was on, drawing a lot of little fox dudes and spaceships/jets. Might not have been Massassi, but I wasn't on that many forums back in the day. A mystery haha

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim7 View Post
    *taps on the soul box*
    "it is time to get a credit card to complete my financial independance" — Tibby, Aug. 2009

  26. #26
    My daughter is currently playing your game. It's really cute to hear her thoughts and musings. She doesn't understand English and can't read yet so the underlying story is beyond her.

    Me, at the first obstacle: "You can double jump."
    Her, annoyed: "I KNOW!"

    Her: "I'd love to have babies. Can I have some babies."
    Me, carefully: "She already has babies. But they're ... not well."

    After she'd found the first one: "Maybe the other's went to the doctor."

    When she found a knife: "Maybe, the baby was killed by a hunter and he buried the knife to hide it."

    Her: "A lightsaber!"
    Me: "That's a fishing rod."

    Her: "Now I'm going to find those lights, get past the thorns and find my babies!"
    Sorry for the lousy German

  27. #27
    Her: "Why can't she run? Go faster! I can run when I'm sad!"
    Sorry for the lousy German

  28. #28
    Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freelancer View Post
    og blockland!

    good times, good times

  29. #29

    "Has it won yet?"

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    17,196
    That's a blast from the past.

    Good to see you again Whelly. Definitely remember your twisted camp level.
    SnailIracing:n(500tpostshpereline)pants
    -----------------------------@%

  30. #30
    to wound the autumnal city.
    Posts
    5,314
    Nice to see you posting here again. I actually saw in another video (linked to on Reddit a few months ago) that you'd be active here back in the day... I was immediately inspired to purchase your game on Steam. Lo and behold, I already owned it (must've picked it up during a Steam sale at some point). Still haven't had a chance to play it yet (my free time for gaming is somewhat limited in the summers) but I am definitely looking forward to checking it out. :-)

  31. #31
    Most successful Massassian ever
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    1,081
    Thanks Echoman and Dsettahr! It's good to check in occasionally, and I secretly hope this place is still up and running when I'm 70.
    "I'm afraid of OC'ing my video card. You never know when Ogre Calling can go terribly wrong."

  32. #32
    Administrator
    Posts
    7,631
    I really really enjoyed your youtube video and I appreciate you sharing. I mentioned this previously but if I could do one thing different about how I ran Massassi it would have been to be much more gentle and supportive with the work people submitted. Most of my levels totally sucked, and even the ones I released and was super proud of weren't that great. I get that most people aren't so fragile that some unkind words from a teenager running a web site will mess them up or something, but on the flip side I think some kind words would have been so much better.

    Anyway, the older I get the more appreciative I get for all the help we've had over the years, not only directly working on the site but also participating in the forums, submitting content, submitting levels, helping moderate, design/artwork, mentioning us in videos, linking to us, etc. It's all just fantastic and I wish I had the time these days to put in that I used to have when I was younger.

    So yeah, you're welcome. But also thank you.

  33. #33
    Loves Thrawn426... something something
    Posts
    869
    Whelly, for some reason I think I remembered your username from back in the day. I started here around 2003 and haven’t been active for the past 15 years... figured I’d drop in on this place.

    Glad to see you’ve found success as an indie game developer 😀

  34. #34
    Child's Play CharityBlockyness Rocks!
    Posts
    2,960
    Hey everyone. In case anyone was debating on whether or not to try out Whelly's game, it's on sale today for only $2.99 USD on Steam. I just thought I'd share with everyone - it's been on my wishlist so I'm going to pick it up today.

    https://store.steampowered.com/app/5..._620_4_1400_45
    Author of the JK levels:
    Sand Trap & Sand Trap (Night)


  35. #35
    Most successful Massassian ever
    Posts
    1,081
    Welcome back Arkon11! It's always fun to check in. Thanks for the shoutout Dark__Knight, and if anyone wants to play it for free, just message me.

    Brian, there was still plenty of kindness here of course, so many nice people lending their time and talents to help newbies like me. So don't be too hard on yourself! Just the fact that people still love coming here is a great sign that the culture surrounding Massassi is solid.
    "I'm afraid of OC'ing my video card. You never know when Ogre Calling can go terribly wrong."

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