The Development of High Hat Havoc and Our Sarcastic Muse, Scamp

When Big Hat Games first came together, to help with lessening the burden of the design team, we had initially thought about using a team members previously written Game Design Pitch for the game we would create.  After mulling the idea over, we decided to start from scratch to find the game idea that the team would fall in love with.  Through much iteration , there were a few things we decided in the beginning: we wanted the game to be simple, and we didn’t want it to be story or dialogue heavy.  Well… we always start with what we want, but just like many games going through iteration, we didn’t finish with those decisions.

 The Founding Members of Big Hat Games. From Left to right: Jarory, Daniel, Riley, Alyssa, and Keegan

The Founding Members of Big Hat Games. From Left to right: Jarory, Daniel, Riley, Alyssa, and Keegan

The idea for our main character came about in a design meeting where our lead artist joked, “What if you played as a s***y little imp?”, and the idea stuck from that point on.  The design team got to work thinking about how to incorporate that and gamify the concept.  We threw around the idea of teleporting and creating clones, which drew inspiration from Magic the Gathering’s board game’s Jace, who can spawn clones and teleport to different spaces.

 Early Animatic Concept for Scamp

Early Animatic Concept for Scamp

 We started this project initially hoping to just make it into one big portfolio piece for the team, as the scope of anything more than an artistically polished 10-minute gaming experience was too high for the lack of time we had available.   As the team grew with a few new members, we were able to re-scope, and include their interests as well.  The team had already created so much content, and had been playing around with new abilities, it was inevitable that our creativity would reach farther than we once thought possible.  One of our new members created a tutorial level that the team liked, and the thought of actually releasing the game while maintaining portfolio-like quality became more of a reality.  The problem we faced at that time was that we knew how and why Scamp acted the way he did, but nobody else outside of our team had that insider knowledge.  We all loved Scamp and knew that lacking in story or dialogue was going to take away from the ability for others to feel the same way the team did about him, so we switched gears and started writing.

After we had a finalized script for the game, we sought out talent who could voice those lines, and man did we hit the jackpot with these guys.  Our main character, Scamp, is voiced by Griffin Puatu, the Master and the Paint Wizard are voiced by Christopher Hedley, and all of the other voices, like The High Hat and the Ring Wizard to name a few, are voiced by Dakota Myers.  No longer were they just thoughts we had of Scamp, we had made them into a reality that could have only been truly realized with the dialogue and voice actors.

 The Scamp: High Hat Havoc Team Following Beta Launch

The Scamp: High Hat Havoc Team Following Beta Launch

This journey is set to release on Steam, target date we are shooting for is late November, but that will be announced as soon as we know.  We are continuing to develop the game to make sure our fans have the ability to control our sarcastic Scamp, and experience our brief but satisfying platforming adventure.

Stay tuned for more updates and more behind the scenes about the development of Scamp: High Hat Havoc.

Jarory de Jesus