Phillip Hunt co-founded the game development group Gilgamesh Games with Alec Henninger in 2002. Alec was the lead programmer while Phillip provided the artwork, and both contributed to the design and direction of the games. The focus of Gilgamesh Games was to create old school 2-D games that were both fun and challenging. The first game that was created was the vertical scrolling sci-fi shooter "Galaxacon".
One of the last waves
The objective of the game was simple – survive as long as possible against increasingly more difficult waves of enemies until you arrived at the final showdown with the evil Death Wing. The game sported 3 different types of enemies and had several power-ups for the player to pick up including the ability to shoot fireballs, increase the speed of your ship, and a laser upgrade nicknamed "Basers" after the player collected a set number of points.
Final Boss Battle
The most impressive thing about the game wasn’t necessarily the game itself, but the short development cycle that lasted roughly a month. At the time, it was exceptionally exciting to have crafted a working game in such a short amount of time even though there was only one level.
With "Galaxacon" behind them, their sights for the next game were set much higher. Work began on "Galaxacon 2" a few months after the initial "Galaxacon" and the scope was increased tenfold. A new ship was created for the game along with a slew of enemies at higher resolutions. Additional physics and effects were added to the engine allowing for the blurring of weapons and the ability to use the destroyed remains of ships as shrapnel. However, as time went on less progress was made and the game was eventually cancelled in favor of a side scrolling adventure game.
The last collaboration for Gilgamesh Games was the Metroidvania style "Seraphim Seed" that centered around a warrior who traveled to an unknown island to purge it of its indigenous people by orders of a corrupt order. More focus was put on the story than ever before and an entire cast of characters was created. The story wasn’t the only thing to increase in complexity as this game was the first game that had a GUI editor. Quite a bit of work was put into the editor and it allowed for multiple layers and 3-D plane support. Several sprite sheets were also created for the game but the actual game engine never materialized. As with "Galaxacon 2" the scope of the game was too large to realize and was eventually cancelled. Even though "Galaxacon 2" and "Seraphim Seed" were cancelled, some of their ideas and art might resurface in a future HGS game – time will tell.
Concept Pixel Art for Seraphim Seed
Several years then passed with the occasional dabbling in game editors, song creation, and pixel art but nothing on the scale of Gilgamesh Games. More focus was placed on programming due to Phillip’s shift to building business applications but the desire to create video games never vanished. With the release of XNA several years ago it seemed like the perfect time to pick it up again – thus Hunt Game Studios was created.
Hunt Game Studios was founded in July of 2011 by Phillip Hunt and is based in Kirkland, WA. The focus of the studio is on developing games using Microsoft’s XNA framework for the XBOX360, PC, and eventually the Windows Phone platform.
The games we are going to create will be rooted in the 8-bit and 16-bit eras. While this has certainly become a trend in recent years, we are very interested in creating the types of games we grew up playing; those that focused on gameplay and fun over lavish cut scenes and multi-million dollar budgets. This is essentially continuing the vision that was originally started with Gilgamesh Games back in 2002.
Also, as an indie development studio with limited resources, games of this nature are much more viable and can actually see the light of day. With the advent of digital distribution more development studios than ever before can release their content. We have waited a long time to get things off the ground and are excited about where this journey will take us. We hope you enjoy playing our games when they are finally released!