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natasha dawn thomas
Recent community posts
been jamming out a lot lately, here's a recorded session from yesterday night at a new venue i'm helping construct called the lunar heaven sanctuary.
this is an ambient jam, different from the last few things i've posted in here in that it's a lot more focused on noise and feeling rather than raw intensity. was a lot of fun, thinking about recording an album kind of like this.
another new one, i really like this one:
this one i experimented with two bass guitars and a drum machine. the bass was recorded yesterday; the drums were done today. it's pretty heavy and wildly jazz metal in parts. i'm enjoying where this one's going.
still doing lots of work on Joylancer!
we're getting ready for our big release this upcoming January, so we're in the process of cleaning everything up, while i'm designing more bosses on the side to put in the main campaign. i'm very excited with how things have been going!
i'm also writing lots and lots of design documents lately, getting ready for the next projects we're gonna jump on after. aside from that, i'm mostly just doing music stuff hehe.
more improv recordings:
the first one is about three or four different bass guitar riffs layered over each other, playing in front of some drums that my friend recorded. the second one is a 10-minute bass guitar duet, both guitars recorded by me. up next i'm working on composing some drums over II to see what kind of sound i can get out of it. i really want to play with the idea of doing death metal / black metal that's only comprised of bass.
a big primary focus in my music is in composing various forms of experimental metal; i dabble in other genres occasionally, but most of my music is either ambient or extreme metal. i also do hip-hop / footwork material occasionally, and i plan on doing a lot more in 2016. i also recently got my bass fixed, so i'll probably be doing lots of solo recordings. my soundcloud is usually where the work-in-progress material goes, and the finished stuff gets pressed to bandcamp.
admittedly my music can be extremely harsh, but that's typically my favorite kind of stuff to make.
hey everyone, i'm glad we're all hyped up for the itch app! there's now a new forum for it within the community; please feel free to make suggestions and report issues here! Amos will also be keeping us all up to date for this new app, and we'd like to keep most discussion fairly neatly within there, so people don't have to go searching all over the forums looking for app information!
i figured i'd start things off with our new audio forum by posting some of the newer stuff i've been doing. i recently got my bass guitar fixed so i've been dusting it off and getting back into the groove of playing again. it's been a long time since i've had any extended time with a string instrument, so my playing isn't the cleanest right now.
this is an experimental metal solo improv composition that i played in order to test out recording equipment -- mostly for sound quality. the overall sound quality is pretty good, all things considered, so i'm pretty happy with the final result, even if my picking isn't the cleanest right now.
i'll probably be recording more improv sessions in the future, preferably at a time when my neighbors aren't trying to sleep!
if you like the song, you can download it for free through the soundcloud / bandcamp links. my bandcamp is where all of my music is if you're interested! i play a very experimental form of electronic metal that i recently dubbed "vapor metal." it's mostly for fans of black / death metal, drone / noise fans and people who are into really hardcore power electronics, but i do like to play around with sounds pretty often, including for an ambient pop project that i've started composing for again recently.
what's up, folks? we haven't pushed out a big chunk of updates yet, but there's a shiny new music forum that can now be used to talk about music and share work with the rest of the community. we're keeping an eye on the Forum Suggestions thread and rolling out stuff like this based on community request and how much it seems like we need it, and there was enough interest to warrant adding it!
for our new forum, i would also like to emphasize all sorts of sound discussion, including stuff that isn't explicitly music, such as voice clips, sound effects, all the finer details and that. :)
big thanks to all of you that have been hanging out while we're getting set up!
Metal Gear Online and Tekken Tag 2, although i haven't put in much time in either -- way too busy lately. i play MGO on Xbox One and Tag 2 on PS3. i plan on putting in some quality time with Hylics this month!
Game Maker:Studio is easily my favorite, but i've always been a GM person ever since the 4.3 days -- maybe the fact that i spent so much time with the tool is why i'm so comfortable with it? i will say that GM definitely has its frustrating parts, but i feel like just about every engine does, yeah? i could never get into Construct or Stencyl, and Unity is too overwhelming for my brain to handle. GM:Studio seems to be just right for me, giving me a solid set of tools while also giving me the ability to add onto it fairly easily and without learning *too* much code. (it's also a fantastic tool for prototyping!)
for pixel art, i use GraphicsGale, which is kinda like a "Photoshop Lite, for pixel art and animations" if i had to summarize it. it's about $20 or $30 from HumanBalance, but it's a great program -- albeit a little buggy in places.
i work almost exclusively on multiple projects, honestly. it actually helps me keep focused and lets me improve my skills as a designer and creator at the same time.
for example, while working on Joylancer, my roommate and i will occasionally take a few days to work on other stuff instead. this keeps us really active and energetic, without us getting bored with the project. a big problem that i personally have is that if i focus too much on a singular project, i start to dislike it and even run into pretty major design humps. by allowing myself to take a break and experiment with other things, i learn more knowledge that i can then apply to another project, such as the "primary" project i'm working on at the time.
to me, it feels like both the most organic and beneficial way to make games... but i also have like, three other jobs outside game development, so maybe i'm just a worker by nature!
itch.io is a small little fledgling website that has only existed for a few years -- i'm gonna say about two or three? -- and jumping into the current gaming ecosystem, which is currently dominated by Steam and GOG of the like, and finding any kind of significant visibility is a real tough thing to do!
i remember this being a problem for me when i first started releasing stuff (way back before i worked here :B); it's real hard to get people to look at your stuff just from posting it here. most "gamers" don't really care about itch.io, and it occasionally gets a bad rep in hardcore gaming communities because our catalog of available games is so completely out there compared to other marketplaces, and we allow all sorts of experimental work, which most gamers, despite saying they want new stuff, don't seem to actually want very much.
of course, this is a thing that shouldn't be considered a negative, in my opinion, but that's how people feel! we're "too new" and our catalog is too weird and diverse. we also don't have a functioning app like Steam yet, although we have one that Amos has been working on for a few months now that's shaping up really well! i personally feel the app will go a decent way towards getting more eyes on itch.io, since a lot of people find the convenience in automatically downloading updates through an app a necessity. we've also been doing a lot for the site to keep growing it, and it does seem to be working pretty well; a year or two ago, we would have never had a big enough community to launch forums!
i think that one of these days itch.io will become a lot more popular as it offers many benefits not just for devs, but for players who are looking for new experiences. until then though, us devs still have to be our own PR; we have to hit up websites that write about and do video for games and try to get our work in peoples' hands so they'll support us! as itch.io, we can only do so much at a time to get the new work out there right now.
i actually just spoke to leaf about this a moment ago, and it turns out that's actually a bug. clicking the "last post x minutes/hours ago" space is supposed to take you to the most recent post, but it's not working right now. thanks for letting us know regardless, though!
hey everybody! my name's natasha dawn, aka TRON MAXIMUM. i help administrate itch.io, handling stuff like quality / spam control, modding the forums of course, approving press applications... lots of fun stuff!
i'm the founder of alpha six productions, an artist collective here on itch.io that is currently working on our first major release, The Joylancer: Legendary Motor Knight! we're also working on lots of cool projects underground while we finish up Joylancer. it's available on Early Access right now, and we'll be announcing a final release date soon!
i'm also an experimental "vapor metal" musician; i write electronic metal compositions in FL Studio 10. i'm currently working on my fifth full length album under the TRON MAXIMUM moniker, but i have a huge collection of music on my Bandcamp.
you can find me managing the alpha six twitter at @_a6productions, or you can follow my main account at @TRONMAXIMUM -- my main is mostly for tweeting about music, retweeting culture & justice tweets, and occasionally bad jokes. if you're curious to see more about our games, you should definitely follow the a6 twitter instead :p