We’re excited to announce that Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) is launching April 1st on the Stadia store, bringing zany 3D tower-building action to players everywhere! Construct stable towers as the Master Stacker, Rockit, by executing architectural feats of balancing using materials such as famous works of art, aquariums, magnets, and more.
To learn more about the quirky world of Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) ahead of launch, we talked with Ian Sundstrom at Herringbone Games!
Hey! Could you introduce yourself and Herringbone Games?
Hi! I’m Ian Sundstrom, an indie developer at Herringbone Games, a small game studio. I wear many hats -- both programming and designing our games as well as taking care of day-to-day operations at the studio. During these unprecedented times of social distancing, our team is hanging in there and looking forward to getting our game in the hands of players!
What kind of games is your studio known for creating?
Herringbone Games is focused on creating novel gameplay mechanics that create unique experiences for our players. Before Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks), we released the mobile strategy board game of color, Sature, which featured an original mechanic in which each players’ pieces would mix colors with each other, like paints on a palette. I always want our players to feel like our games scratch an itch they didn’t know they had!
That’s true, Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) looks incredibly unique as well. Can you describe what’s going on in the trailer?
Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) aims to be the ultimate game in the micro genre of “stacking” games. It’s a simple concept that hasn’t been executed before - a 3D tower-builder that combines elements of other famous 2D stacking games. To keep things interesting, the game has plenty of twists, such as challenging you to build your tower on difficult surfaces or replacing your bricks with random materials like magnets, works of art, or aquariums!
What inspired your team to create Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks)?
The prototype of Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) started as a minigame for a construction-themed side project we were working on. Ultimately, the prototype was so much fun that we decided to expand upon the core idea with tons of variations on the mechanics and building materials. We took mechanical inspiration from other well-known stacking board games, but also drew aesthetic direction from Japanese puzzle-action games as well.
What makes Stacks on Stacks on Stacks unique within the stacking genre?
Unlike most games in the genre, Stacks is fully 3D and utilizes real-time physics for dynamic building. Having an extra dimension allows for more complex and architectural building challenges. In addition, Stacks doesn’t feature any kind of grid snapping or lock-in as you place pieces. This allows your towers to wobble and sway, tilt, or crumble, which creates plenty of tension. Watching a tower collapse can create just as much excitement as building one up - you’ll see!
What’s your favorite gameplay moment in Stacks on Stacks on Stacks?
The best part about our game is watching players execute the seemingly impossible. The hype is real when you see a player finish a stage by perfectly balancing a sculpture on top of a wobbling base. Throughout its development, I’ve watched hundreds of people play Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks), and I still love seeing each player’s unique building method.
What makes you excited to create your game on Stadia?
I’m excited that Stadia allows us to bring Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) to a variety of devices. For example, despite our 3D physics and graphics being too intensive to run on mobile phones independently, with Stadia we’re able to stream Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) for play on phones, tablets, and more. Stadia also helps us make Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) more accessible, including features such as fully remappable inputs, captioning, and legible UI.
What makes Stacks On Stacks (On Stacks) so easy to come back to?
Our game is easy to understand but difficult to master, making it an approachable experience for all players, while still offering a big challenge for those who want to build the tallest possible tower. We’ve also built in a ton of different modes for players to explore, including singleplayer and co-op campaigns, plus two arcade modes with global leaderboards. There’s even a split-screen versus mode, where you can race head-to-head against a friend to build your tower while throwing power-downs like lightning bolts or shrinking their tower’s bricks.
By: Stadia Team
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