Gameplay Prototype (Closed Beta) Has Officially Begun!

Gameplay Prototype (Closed Beta) Has Officially Begun! 1004 1075 andrew

The TinyWars gameplay prototype is finally in the hands of beta testers! Wave 1 or “phase 1” of the closed beta testing has begun. This means that the beta is not publicly accessible, but as a trade off, when the beta is released to the public it should be polished and ready for everyone!

Beta Testing “Waves”

How appropriate is it, for a tower defense game, to be tested in “waves?” These waves are divided up based on the volunteers who signed up to be beta testers!


Refer to this incredible chart to see the difference in wave sizes. (Sorry, pulled all-nighter to finish the prototype…)

Because there may still be game breaking bugs present in the current beta build, we want the first wave to have a small number of people. We want to inconvenience the smallest amount of people in the event some horrible bug comes up and renders the experience unplayable.

Wave 2: Will have a moderate amount of people, if all game breaking glitches and bugs are taken care of, then we will be primarily concerned with “fun factor” and ways we can address that! (approximately week #2)

Wave 3: After considerations from wave 2 and wave 3, the largest group will be able to play the beta and provide feedback. Minor bugs and visual glitches may be addressed at this point before the gameplay prototype is released to the public! (approximately week #3)

Public Release: If all the game breaking bugs are taken care of and we feel that the fun factor is there, then we will release this exact prototype to the public immediately after Wave 3 is finished beta testing!

Have You Played It Yourself?

Of course… I’ve played it so much that I’m sick of it. What? I can’t be sick of it? I guess the game isn’t perfect unless I can play it a million times without getting sick of it right?? Give me a break!


This is my battle report. (I have censored out the map because I do not want to reveal my unit placement.)

I have played through the beta one final time before releasing it to the beta testers and have proved that it is indeed possible to beat the beta with a perfect score!

10/10 means that I took no damage. We only grade our players on the final castle health. We don’t rate your gameplay on units, unit diversity, or spending efficiency like some other tower defense games. In TinyWars, the ends justify the means. Do whatever you have to do to end up with a perfect 10/10, you will get your 3 stars!

How do I sign up?

Message TinyWars Game on the official facebook page with your name and email address and you will be added to the beta testing roster! The roster has filled up quite quickly, so you may be added to Wave 3 until Wave 3 becomes so full that we might have to reject some signups.


TinyWars Gameplay Prototype Ready for Testing This Week!

TinyWars Gameplay Prototype Ready for Testing This Week! 1228 1228 andrew

After all the teasing, artwork, and seemingly “random” cast of characters, we are pleased to announce that officially NONE of those connections or story will be clarified at all! This gameplay prototype serves one purpose, the backbone of the gameplay for TinyWars and gameplay, as a mechanism to deliver our story! Sorry, that has to wait for the real demo! It would be an injustice to the story if we released a buggy game attached to it!


credits-page-menu-compressed main-menu-prorotype-compressed-2 in-game-screenshot in-game-screenshot-2 screenshot-title

How to become a Beta Tester

Beta testing will begin this Thurdsay, October 20th, 2016. We have a pretty hefty list of volunteers to conduct the beta testing, however we are happy to have more!

Beta Tester Signup:

Send a message to TinyWars with your email address! That’s it!

If you don’t have facebook (which is the easiest way to get in contact with us), you may also contact us via the contact form on this website!

Plans for Beta Test

We plan to release the beta downloads in waves, once per week until the beta testers have run out! First wave will test the first beta, after we have a few days to address some common issues or bugs, we will release the revised beta to the next wave, and continue this for a span of 2 – 4 weeks before the bug free beta is released to the public!

The beta will be released on a first come first serve basis, beginning with our closest personal contacts first, then branching out to the volunteers on our beta testing roster, beginning with those who were added earliest!

Unfinished Aspects of the Beta


Many animations in the current gameplay prototype are totally incomplete! As you can see from the picture above, a lot of love and car goes into every single animation frame! We can not spare enough time to incorporate the full animations. We need to get people playing this game or else I fear that some may loose interest and hope in the project! The prototype will be the first manifestation of TinyWars as a video game.

Up until this point, all TinyWars has been was a bunch of images and characters with supposedly “interesting stories” but nothing to deliver the story. This prototype will do nothing to clarify this! But it will have somethings in it to look out for, mainly gameplay experiences.

What is in store for the future?

After the gameplay prototype has been thoroughly tested and perfected (and I don’t expect it to be 100% perfect at this point, but polished up enough), We will begin work on the actual, official, real TinyWars game! The idea being that, once the first few levels of the real campaign have been developed, we can release that as a true TinyWars demo and give the players a real experience of what is in store for them!

I hope people will get a taste for the unique story telling and tower defense/siege gameplay we want to bring to the table. Anyways, this is all for now, if you are interested in beta testing be sure to contact us!

What We’ve Learned About TinyWars

What We’ve Learned About TinyWars 1560 1040 andrew

Post Fan Art Competition – Popular Character? Oh Yeah!


This is a popularity indicator generated based on results from our contest’s Judges. The lovely character Kumo, appears to be an extremely popular character being featured in 23/70 entries. What this tells us is that, regarding the pacing of the game and how long we spend time with each character, Kumo’s arc should be lengthened to satisfy the demand for this character. (But not too long, part of this character’s appeal is her mysterious aura and backstory.)


Artists from top, left to right: SoloEsper01JanthidaHyperion-YamazakiMiahWolfemiyanaiorisu

What does this mean for the rest of the cast?


Contest Entry by DrawXAngel

The rest of the cast won’t be changed or redesigned. Their designs are solid and each of them have their own unique story! There is currently no game content of TinyWars or even any story really released yet, so I do not have any concern about Kumo’s popularity over the rest of the girls. Kumo was specifically designed to look “mysterious” and “intriguing.”


Entry by VKingStudio

Progress Update For Gameplay Prototype

As scheduled, the gameplay prototype should be ready for play testing this month! We have currently finished implementing the final wave to this prototype level. As far as the game’s content goes, it is complete! However there are a few more technical features that need to be completed before the prototype is ready for testing, these include:


  • Implement a “Level Complete” screen at the end of the level
  • Implement a basic menu system (Provide developer info, build info, and basic menu options)
  • Disable the incredibly buggy “fast forward” feature (It’s not going to work for this build!)
  • Actually do a play through and make sure it is POSSIBLE to beat the demo with perfect health!
  • Might leave the test controls enabled so people can have fun experimenting with the game. (Spawns enemies, adds money, etc.)


Remember this little test creature that looks like it was drawn in MS Paint? We’ve grown quite fond of it.


His sprite has been enhanced by our lovely artist, LaDollBlanche.

Things to Consider

Many features of this gameplay prototype will be changed in future builds and demos. Particularly the menu system and general theme of the GUI will be revised to fall more in line with the “tiny” theme. Certain enemy sprites and enemies themselves might be changed.


The prototype is one single sandbox level. It was designed simply so we could develop all the features that the TinyWars game would run on. There are some specific advanced features that have not been implemented, but we have implemented the core features that most of the levels will run on! (We have a few special levels planned)


Because this prototype is designed for testing, there are a variety of enemies that spawn in each wave. In a normal level we would not have this much variety of enemies. Ideally, we would want to build it up, or keep all the enemies within a specific theme. In this prototype you will encounter a bunch of different enemies that look like they came from all sorts of different places. It  looks like a mess on screen and doesn’t have any predictability to it.


Why Tower Defense?

The purpose of this gameplay prototype is to show off some unique features of TinyWars and show that this is NOT your ordinary tower defense game. Someone had suggested to me that we call this a “Siege Game” because “Tower Defense” has such negative associations with it. Specifically tower defense is seen as an old, “dead” and over done genre of video games that is usually associated with people’s first games.

I have a feeling that tower defense, especially for mobile is still a pretty strong genre. Games like Radiant Defense which had been on the app store’s top list several times and other great TD games are all inspirations for TinyWars. However, I will say that I am generally disappointed with most tower defense games that are anime themed. Why do I want to play anime themed games? Is it to see overly sexualized witches with subpar gameplay? No of course not… (I mean I guess some people wouldn’t have a problem with that!)

Why anime theme in general?

Because we have a compelling story to tell. The anime artwork and design is an art style we choose to go with because we have a particularly interesting and engaging story to tell. I know other “anime” games use the anime theme for the sake of being anime, but we have our motivations and I hope that our hard work, whether in writing or in the gameplay, will not go unnoticed!

Interested in Beta Testing?

If you are interested in becoming a beta tester for the prototype, the easiest way to get in touch with us is through our facebook page!

Feel free to send us a message and tell us that you’re interested in becoming a beta tester. It’s going to be pretty easy, nothing much you have to do besides play the game and if possible, do a screen recording of the gameplay! Simple right? 🙂

What Makes TinyWars Different from Other Tower Defense Games?

What Makes TinyWars Different from Other Tower Defense Games? 1911 1071 andrew

We are at a 30% completion mark for our upcoming gameplay demo, very exciting to see the project progress everyday! We estimate 30% completion based on the fact that we have done 5 out of the 15 waves that will be in the demo.

Planning wise, the content of the waves has been planned out, but they have not been coded into the demo yet. What sounds awesome on paper can often need a lot more tweaking when put into the game.

How is TinyWars Revolutionizing Tower Defense

…Not sure if “revolutionizing” is the right word, but we certainly are building upon a tried and true genre. Tower defense has been done many times before us, from really basic app games to some AAA titles, but these days it seems to be a stagnant, unpopular niche genre. With TinyWars we hope to build upon a lot of cool features from our favorite TD games and inject some of our own original ideas into it.

Cool Features to Expect in the Demo!


Mary will have more poses in the final demo than what is seen in the gameplay video (above)

Path Shifting

The battlefield is constantly changing, anything can happen at any time that could stir up the  battle and shift the course of the enemies. You need to be able to adapt your strategy at any time, don’t get too comfortable with your tower placement, be willing to sell units when necessary to adapt to the changing battlefield.

In the demo: This will happen in the demo regarding the strawberry. (spoilers)

Upgrade animation GIF

Updated upgrade animation


What is a “TinyWar?” TinyWars happen periodically during the game, they can happen at any time, in any level, so be on your guard! A TinyWar is a phase in the game when “dark magic” takes over. Normally there are breaks in between waves where the player can take time to plan and even “retry” waves that they didn’t do too well on. However, during a “tinywar” that will not be available, you must complete the entire set of waves and if you fail, you can only restart form the beginning of the tinywar.

In the demo: This will happen when a certain character makes an appearance in the demo. (spoilers)

Unlimited Upgrades

This is still a concept we have been experimenting with, but limiting the unit upgrades to only 3 – 5 phases is what most tower defense games do. We have been juggling with the idea of having unlimited amount of upgrades, different upgrade “paths”, or transformation upgrades that totally change the way the character behaves. The last one is nothing new, we’ve seen it before in other games, but I am not sure if it has been utilized to its fullest extent! We’ll see about this concept.

In the demo: This feature is currently not planned for the demo.


Lastly we want to create a tower defense game where players are rewarded for having good strategies! Not merely building the most towers or the most powerful towers. In tower defense, placement should be a key component of the game and we have units that specifically react to certain units. This is something you must figure out as you play, and don’t worry, the logic behind which units react to what type of attacks is anything but randomized! There has been a lot of thought put into the enemies and what they do.

What is this Blue Blob guy? Is he a placeholder?

Bad Guy GIF

Ah yes, you might have noticed this beautifully rendered “test demo enemy.” Throughout playing the demo countless times, we have grown quite fond of this character to be honest. He will be staying in the demo. Will he appear in the final game? Maybe not, but he’s staying in the demo and that’s final!

 How Many Playable Units Will Be In the Demo?

Currently two, the Fire Witch (Kim), and the Melee Unit (Suzu).

Suzu Blink 3 Kim Blink 3

Will that be boring? No, because there is a lot of enemy types to fight against. Having a lot of unit types is cool, but having a lot of enemy types is far more interesting! Enemies should not be overlooked in a tower defense game!

Also this demo takes place in the “Grass World,” which is the first chapter in the TinyWars story. In that chapter these are the only two playable units. Each chapter unlocks more units, but we do want this demo to reflect some early gameplay of TinyWars. There’s just a lot of things relating to the story that we just can’t spoil! Trust me, you’re going to like the story a lot!

How Difficult Will the Demo be?

Oh man, we designed this demo to be accessible to everyone to be able to get into tower defense (surprisingly, a lot of people are not familiar with tower defense),  but we also created this demo to be like a little “challenge.” Challenge yourself, your friends, or people you know to actually beat the demo.

We said it would be easy and fun to pick up! We never said we would make it easy to beat. In fact, the final wave of the demo has been specifically designed to be a challenge. We’re trying to cram 100 units into the screen at once, we’ll see about that. But we will make sure it’s not easy to beat, or at least not easy to beat with a perfect score! (not taking any damage!)

We promise we will play through the demo ourselves to ensure that it is possible to beat without taking damage!

Is there Any Story in the Demo?

There will not be story related cutscenes in this demo, this is just a lighthearted demo for fun and to demonstrate the gameplay mechanics of TinyWars. However, there will be story “elements” in this demo. Mary’s personality will be presented, and some other hints might be made, but regarding the main story we just don’t have anything in this demo.

This is NOT to suggest that we don’t have the TinyWars story figured out! Oh no! The storyline for TinyWars has been written well in advanced of any gameplay or coding! By this we mean that all the main events and key plot points have been outlined in the story, this doesn’t mean all the lines have been set in stone and scripted fully, but the events have been pretty much set in stone!

The story is not shallow, nor generic, I can certainly promise that! It will be fun to follow, it’ll be a wild ride, and there will be some heart breaking moments for sure. Maybe one day TinyWars might get an anime deal! Who knows? But we’re getting way ahead of ourselves here… First thing is first, the gameplay demo!

Be on the look out, we are 30% done and progressing faster and faster now that many of the core mechanics have been implemented and lots of bugs have been addressed!

What platforms will the gameplay demo release on?

The gameplay demo will release on Windows PC for sure. Regarding mobile development, there still needs to be a lot of testing done to make sure device comparability is maximized. The game is fully responsive and should work (in theory) on any sized screen or device, BUT this has yet to be tested.

First the PC version of the game needs to be completed before we can even begin testing for mobile, I’m sure there will be many tweaks and adjustments to be made in order to get the mobile version running smoothly… Oh boy, I’m getting excited just thinking about it.



Social Media Marketing and our Video Game Project

Social Media Marketing and our Video Game Project 1920 1080 andrew

Here’s a cool way we have described the project to those who don’t understand what it’s all about:

TinyWars is the story of a kingdom that is literally tiny, we’re talking about small people of course. Naturally, like the rest of normal sized humanity, war and conflict rages on.

The story follows a girl named Mary (girl pictured above) as she crosses vast oceans (ponds) and great mountains (ant hills), in order to save the tiny kingdom from utter destruction. Along the way she meets all sorts of new friends and people, and becomes ever more powerful and mature as she continues her long journey (about 10 feet) towards the tiny kingdom.

Social Media Marketing Campaign

We have really done a lot to promote the project on social media, a lot of people love to participate in our social media posts and give us feedback on the development. Some of our best ways of promoting the project have been to just reach out and ask the fans what they preferred!

It’s hard to tell how well a post like this performed since 18 Likes is not really so powerful, but these posts performed exceptionally well when shared to relevant groups and pages!

peopel reacheddd

Thankfully, facebook page manager shows us how many people were “reached” for this post, counting the total versions of this post that was shared.

fb resulttts

Now you can see same post in the context of the group it was shared in, a generic anime group, and the feedback is phenomenal! Of course more people are being exposed to the project this way, the translation from these likes to new LIKES on our official fan page is, as expected, about 1 in 100. (8,000 post views, 100 new likes that day.)

Lessons about Target Audience

Another thing that is really important to note, is that sharing these kinds of updates to other types of groups that don’t land in our target audience, i.e. indie game development groups, has proven to be rather unsuccessful, even receiving harsh criticism or hate because some members are not interested in seeing “anime garbage” in the group. It is natural to feel discouraged, disappointed, and saddened by such feedback, however we can not let that influence or disrupt our activities. Having spent many years in the web development industry, I’ve come to learn that other programmers can be a highly opinionated group of people. Not all advice given is actually worth considering, and I mean that with all due respect.

Either way, we’re happy that our target audience has received the project well and we hope to do whatever we can to make sure our hard work is not gone unappreciated!

That’s the whole point of being an indie game developer right? To produce games that make people happy!  How can we do that if nobody even knows about our project? Social media marketing has proven very useful! Whether people actually LIKE the page or not, more eyes are being exposed to the game, characters, and logo, if this project ever became “big”, I’m sure something might “click” inside someone’s head who has seen our posts before, and they might be interested in our game!

A post like this has performed exceptionally well! We get a lot of great feedback from the fans and best of all, we get deeper insights into what people really want to see in this project! We’re almost at our first milestone goal of 1000 facebook LIKES, and we hope to continue growing the project and interacting with the community!

Facebook Analytics Rankings?

clash of clans

Ranking from:

It’s also really cool to see something like our social media ranking pretty high on the list with some other big titles! <3

social media rankingsss

As of right now, we are NOT opting into facebook ads, or any paid advertising. Having experience marketing for other types of industries, we’ve learned to shy away from paid advertising until we got our organic traffic settled first. Once we have that figured out, the paid advertising and really enhance that traffic even more, but we would not opt in to use paid advertising as our sole source of promotion. (Because that would suggest that something is lacking in terms of our own strategy or content is just not engaging enough!)

Social Media Ideas!

Thank you guys so much for supporting us!

We have even experimented with social media “games” postings like this. (might not display properly unless viewed within facebook!)

We will continue to work the social media campaign, as building a fan base and followers is really important to any game development! We want to have a community of fans who really want to see this project succeed! It would be quite lonely developing this project and releasing it when no fans, it’s not a very good marketing strategy to be honest, and it’s part of the reason many games (and other projects) fail!

Why Posters?

Tiny wars Poster Test 1 Messing Around JPEG SMALL

A lot of people still do not know what the TinyWars project is all about, i.e. the story. And this became evident when we released this poster! (pictured above.) We received a lot of interest and people really liked it yet, at the same time, a lot of fans who had been following us for a long time mentioned that, “it didn’t fit the game” or “it doesn’t look like TinyWars.”

Quickly, we realized that the TinyWars we (the development team) are seeing and envisioning, is not the same TinyWars that our fans have been seeing. Since obviously, our game is not released yet, and the only thing we have been releasing is character updates and small updates. None of those updates really represent the core of the project!

Posters are a great way to really capture those essential elements of the project and present story elements of the game in a single picture, that would otherwise require a player to play hours of the game to understand. It’s also a great way to build interest, as you can see, the poster above does not look like a “loli defense” game, but shows the darker, more serious side of this project!

Posters also capture a lot more interest in the project than just generic screenshots of the game. I have noticed, even a lot of big AAA titles show off more posters, concept art, and cinematic than actual in-game footage to promote their project. I’m guessing there is a good reason for that, and it probably has to do with the “excitement” and “interest” factor. Likewise, we want to adopt a similar marketing strategy, by presenting posters and imagery that really embodies the true meaning of our project without being misleading or “advertisey.”

Shouldn’t You Be Programming Instead of Promoting?

Ideally, we should be doing both simultaneously. There are some road blocks that are preventing the demo from progressing, but we can cover that in a later post.

What is important is that, for us, the core and true motivation of this project does not come from the video game itself, but rather what TinyWars represents. It is much larger than a tower defense game, to us, it is a beautiful cast of characters, a cute and sinister story line, and a whole lot of twists and surprises that can be really effective if executed well!

Building the fan base is an essential part of any project development, and if we don’t start now, we will be missing out on a lot of ways to interact with our fans or keep the community updated as we progress from a tiny project to something that could be very big!

New Character Design Potion Girl with Eye Patch

New Character Design Potion Girl with Eye Patch 1365 768 andrew

We have a new character brewing! We have mixed a few different design elements into this girl to make her cuteness a little more potent. We hope that you will find her backstory to be a refreshing twist of both happy and depressing ingredients.

coffee witch

We’ve been mixing many new features into the demo that we’ve been teasing on this blog. We will share a new blog post focusing specifically on that demo, but I think you’ll appreciate all the work we put into cleaning up the graphics and expanding the possibilities in the world!

Three Possible Designs

Choose Character 2b

We asked our fans on Facebook and Twitter about 3 possible different designs of this character, design #3 received the most love!



However, we did in fact end up choosing #1 as the design, there is a multitude of reasons behind our decision making, ultimately it ties down to this characters personalty! We really do enjoy seeing what the rest of our fan base has to say about the designs, it’s very interesting to hear people’s ideas and we appreciate all the feedback.

Even though we ended up choosing a certain design over another, doesn’t mean certain details that people liked from the other designs won’t make it into the final!

Work In Progress, Design #1

poti1b_by_hyanna_natsu-da4ff0n THIS ONE potential colors

Here’s a work in progress of this potion girl, she’s very cute and probably one of my favorite characters in terms of design and her story. We hope you will be fascinated by our game’s story, because that is possible the strongest point of this project, next to the amazing music of course!

Yes, OK, I admit it, tower defense is just tower defense… but we’re trying our best to “innovate” as much as we can! I promise it will be challenging and fun! But in terms of differentiating ourselves from other TD games out there, you should find the fascinating story and music to be a big factor!

Thank you for following our development!