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Back in 2007, I got the ambitious idea to turn a story of mine into an animated short. Loving animation yet having absolutely zero experience producing it, I figured out what needed to be done, saved a ridiculous amount of my meager salary, found and hired talented people to do the things I couldn’t do myself (like animate), and in 2009, “Kid with a Rocket Launcher: The Fuzz of War” was completed.
Again in 2011, I did it all once more, for a completely different idea of mine. It took 2 years again, a ton of my own hard-earned money again, and “TeaKitties” was finally born in 2013. I even managed to do the storyboards for that one on my 3DS (with the ‘Colors! 3D’ app).
I did those two animated shorts because I love being creative. I threw a large percent of my annual, modest office manager salary at them to make stories that I could be proud of, even if not many people could see them. I love KWARL and TEAK, and they will forever be a part of my creative DNA.
In 2015, I got the itch to do it again. However, instead of simply doing another animated short, I was inspired by all the talk about VR, and along with Unity suddenly offering their software for free, I decided to turn my new idea into a VR experience (with some fun 2D animation included).
March 9th, 2015. That was the day I realized I should make Riley into something to enjoy in VR. March 10th, 2015, I downloaded Unity for the first time and got to work learning the program from scratch. I can’t remember a time in my life I wasn’t playing video games, but I had never seriously considered making a game before that day. I estimate the first year of development was spent coming to grips with Unity (thank you tutorial videos), while year 2 was spent actually building Riley toward my vision. Mention must also be made of the very talented freelance artists from across the globe who contributed to this project. One of the other reasons I do complicated things like this is to work along with other creative individuals toward a common goal. It’s educational, inspiring and rewarding.
So what you now see before you, on Steam, for $7.99 (and $3.99 for the soundtrack!), is my newest 2-year+, self-funded, creative effort. I sincerely hope you enjoy it.
Riley Short Copyright Matthew Reis
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