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Hothead and Penny Arcade form Greenhouse - PAA their launch title.

Ross MillsRoss Mills Registered User regular
edited April 2008 in Penny Arcade Games
Link

Link to Greenhouse website

Hothead Games and Penny Arcade today announced the Greenhouse - a new distribution platform dedicated to supporting independent game development worldwide.

The digital distribution platform will be operated by the newly-formed company Greenhouse Interactive located in Vancouver.

Greenhouse's first game launch will be Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness, Episode One - a shared project of the two companies.

"There are so many great games out there that you don't hear about," explained Robert Khoo of Penny Arcade.

"They're too niche or too risky in terms of game play for the top publishers to be comfortable with distributing. We want the Greenhouse to be an alternative for these developers."

"Digital distribution opens so many doors for independent game development, arguably just like the VCR and DVD players did for indie films," said Vlad Ceraldi of Hothead Games.

"We believe in the Greenhouse as an opportunity to support other indie developers and complement the platforms and services currently out there, ensuring that the environment for such development firmly takes root and continues to grow."


Weren't a lot of games like this being released on Steam? Just how "niche" are these games?

Ross Mills on
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Posts

  • NotASenatorNotASenator Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    This is a pretty big thing. There's also a story on Wired:
    http://blog.wired.com/games/2008/04/penny-arcade-la.html

    and an accompanying interview with Mike and Jerry.

  • Robert KhooRobert Khoo Registered User, Administrator, ClubPA, Penny Arcade Staff, PAX Staff staff
    edited April 2008
  • Ross MillsRoss Mills Registered User regular
    edited April 2008

    So does that mean that games already released elsewhere will not be released on this platform?

    Is this more of a useful "stepping stone" to bigger and better things for the independent developer?

    I applaud it. Just make sure you can handle the load. ^_^

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  • KarennaKarenna Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I just registered over there, and was checking the site out. Forums still inop, I assume? Also, I'm getting an Error Code 7 on the download...is it live yet, or sit tight and wait?

    Overall, awesome idea, guys!

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  • Robert KhooRobert Khoo Registered User, Administrator, ClubPA, Penny Arcade Staff, PAX Staff staff
    edited April 2008
    To simplify the process, if a game has the approval of Gabe and Tycho, it's got the greenlight onto Greenhouse. They're looking for fun, independent games that otherwise wouldn't get the exposure - a lot like games the guys mention on the site I suppose! But no, we're not requiring the game not be found elsewhere.

    As far as the download error - shoot an email to support@playgreenhouse.com. Should be live, but it's likely getting the crap beaten out of it from the frontpage link, which is exactly what we wanted. Thanks!

    Some guy.
  • HH VladHH Vlad Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Karenna wrote: »
    I just registered over there, and was checking the site out. Forums still inop, I assume? Also, I'm getting an Error Code 7 on the download...is it live yet, or sit tight and wait?

    Overall, awesome idea, guys!

    Forums should be working now.

  • SaarSaar Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    Since gmail doesn't seem to like support@playgreenhouse.com

    (Technical details of permanent failure:
    PERM_FAILURE: SMTP Error (state 14): 553 sorry, that domain isn't in my list of allowed rcpthosts (#5.7.1))

    Here's my error that I tried to send in:

    I encountered an error on the Mac version of the downloader.

    At 11% I received:

    Error

    Only part of file was Downloaded.
    Connection may have been interrupted during transfer.
    Error code: 18

    This occurred while I was viewing various web pages so I don't think it was my connection.

    edit: looks like I got another at 24%.

  • HH VladHH Vlad Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Saar wrote: »
    Since gmail doesn't seem to like support@playgreenhouse.com

    (Technical details of permanent failure:
    PERM_FAILURE: SMTP Error (state 14): 553 sorry, that domain isn't in my list of allowed rcpthosts (#5.7.1))

    Here's my error that I tried to send in:

    I encountered an error on the Mac version of the downloader.

    At 11% I received:

    Error

    Only part of file was Downloaded.
    Connection may have been interrupted during transfer.
    Error code: 18

    This occurred while I was viewing various web pages so I don't think it was my connection.

    edit: looks like I got another at 24%.

    Ol' error 18, eh? You are not the only one. Looking into both issues.

  • OatsOats Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I've also been on the receiving end of error 18.

    More to the point, though: offering me prices in CAD? Khoo, me love you long time!

  • PolagoPolago Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Having a centralized location for promising independent efforts has been one of the missing links in game development for a long time. Not everybody hits success by themselves like Jonathan Mak (Everyday Shooter), and not everyone is in a position to secure a business loan or the assets required to push many titles out the door. It's not for lack of effort or lack of quality, but rather because sometimes the chips are stacked against you, and fighting release schedules, certification processes, and a perceived lack of marketability as a product or as a person can create an insurmountable hurdle for most.

    Greenhouse offers yet another avenue and alternative to that insurmountable hurdle and is a really uplifting creation on PA/HH's parts. Congrats guys and best of luck!

  • HH VladHH Vlad Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Oatway wrote: »
    I've also been on the receiving end of error 18.

    More to the point, though: offering me prices in CAD? Khoo, me love you long time!

    Hothead is CDN so only fair . . . eh? Americans will pay in USD and Canadians in loonies--digital loonies.

    BTW, found the issue with error 18 and working on a fix. Please standby.

  • KeithKeith Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I've got it downloading the podcast now.

    The only "problem" I've had so far is that the icon looks really bad on OS X. It's a really low resolution.

  • OatsOats Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    HH Vlad wrote: »
    Oatway wrote: »
    I've also been on the receiving end of error 18.

    More to the point, though: offering me prices in CAD? Khoo, me love you long time!

    Hothead is CDN so only fair . . . eh? Americans will pay in USD and Canadians in loonies--digital loonies.

    BTW, found the issue with error 18 and working on a fix. Please standby.

    I knew HH was Canadian, I just didn't know who was running the pricing end of the whole business.

    Even better that we can make the Yanks use our gloriously coloured money.

  • ElkiElki hegemon globalSuper Moderator, Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited April 2008
  • redfenixredfenix Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
  • HH VladHH Vlad Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Keith wrote: »
    I've got it downloading the podcast now.

    The only "problem" I've had so far is that the icon looks really bad on OS X. It's a really low resolution.

    Fixed--may take a while to . . . propagate

  • Rhesus PositiveRhesus Positive Damn these electric sex pants! Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    HH Vlad wrote: »
    Oatway wrote: »
    I've also been on the receiving end of error 18.

    More to the point, though: offering me prices in CAD? Khoo, me love you long time!

    Hothead is CDN so only fair . . . eh? Americans will pay in USD and Canadians in loonies--digital loonies.

    BTW, found the issue with error 18 and working on a fix. Please standby.

    Will Brits pay with sterling? Or will we be able to take advantage of the exchange rate?

    Another successful post, thanks to the power of Spacestar Ordering™!
  • RyadicRyadic Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I tried downloading it last night and watched it go at an average of 20-25 kb/s. I think it maxed somewhere around 40 kb/s but that was for a quick second or two. Well I watched it hit up to like 6 % in about a minute and decided I would go do something else. So I'm gone for about 5 - 10 minutes and come back and the download is stuck on 8%. I let it sit for about another 2 minutes and it didn't move.

    Any idea what caused this?

    I also had the same gmail problem.

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  • FactoidFactoid Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I'm glad you're doing a test with a realistically sized file. Looks like the platform needs a LOT of performance tweaking. This is good, though, because every digital distribution system goes down on its first day. Take the advice of Brad Wardell at Stardock...estimate how much bandwidth you think you need for first day downloading customers, and add about 80% to it just in case. I weep for your servers.

    On a different note: Will Greenhouse support pre-loading the way steam does, and just download the last 1-5% of the files on launch day? I've been trying to download the podcast since yesterday, and it dies every few minutes, and fluctuates between about 20kb/s and 500kb/s...mostly in the low range, though. Preloading will help a lot of that. As would an auto-resume feature, so I don't have to keep clicking "resume" all the time. Don't worry, I'm also sending that info to the support email.

  • WilDPanthA05WilDPanthA05 Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Ryadic wrote: »
    I tried downloading it last night and watched it go at an average of 20-25 kb/s. I think it maxed somewhere around 40 kb/s but that was for a quick second or two. Well I watched it hit up to like 6 % in about a minute and decided I would go do something else. So I'm gone for about 5 - 10 minutes and come back and the download is stuck on 8%. I let it sit for about another 2 minutes and it didn't move.

    Any idea what caused this?

    I also had the same gmail problem.


    Just downloaded now roughly 92 - 94 kb/s, maybe it's just not getting hit as hard

  • LewiePLewieP Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    Just in case anyone cares about my thoughts on Greenhouse, here's a blog post I wrote about it.

  • HitScanHitScan Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Just downloaded now roughly 92 - 94 kb/s, maybe it's just not getting hit as hard
    I'm having trouble getting it to come down any quicker than 12kb/s. :/

    If I were on dialup this wouldn't be too shocking, but I'm sitting on a mostly unused T-1. :(

    Unstable like the isotope that resolves the fate of the theoretical cat in the hypothetical crate.
    Yo momma so fat she got triabetes
  • RyadicRyadic Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    Tried it again just now when I got home and the second I hit 'ok' to download it shot right up to 2000 kb/s and I went to 16%, effectively doubling it from 8%, in about 10 seconds. On average I got about 800 kb/s.

    steam_sig.png
  • HH VladHH Vlad Registered User
    edited April 2008
    Ryadic wrote: »
    Tried it again just now when I got home and the second I hit 'ok' to download it shot right up to 2000 kb/s and I went to 16%, effectively doubling it from 8%, in about 10 seconds. On average I got about 800 kb/s.

    We are working on it and getting the system balanced. Continue to test if you can. Much appreciated. We have posted a new downloader that fixes a few bugs and are working on the other issues.

  • RyadicRyadic Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    Continue to test? Do you mean download it over and over, cause if so I don't mind doing that.

    steam_sig.png
  • ShujaaShujaa Registered User
    edited April 2008
    I just tried it and get a fairly stable 500-600k/sec down my 20mbit line. It dips every few seconds to around 350k/sec for a moment but if I get this speed once you're in full flow, then there's nothing to complain about.

    I'm in England.

    Balefuego wrote: »
    When I play FPS games I just assume my dude is inside a tiny plane and he's sticking his arm out the window with a gun.
  • ShujaaShujaa Registered User
    edited April 2008
    edit - nevermind I filled out a survey with my opinions instead :)

    Balefuego wrote: »
    When I play FPS games I just assume my dude is inside a tiny plane and he's sticking his arm out the window with a gun.
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