Building an NES game in 2023
Skate Cat is a brand-new NES game where you embark on an epic adventure with Soja. Take control of an awesome skateboarding cat and prepare to face off against a horde of monsters unleashing chaos upon the world. Explore a variety of unique locations, filled with their own distinct challenges and obstacles.
Skate Cat is getting a physical NES release from Limited Run Games, and in a new interview from the publisher, developer SJ Games (consisting of 11-year-old SJ and his father Dale Coop) spoke up on what it’s like creating an NES game in today’s day and age.
SJ: I’ve learned a lot working on my games: how NESmaker software works, the limitations of the NES, such as using only 3 colors per sprite for characters and not being able to display more than 8 sprites on the same line on the screen. So, I have to think about how to design my characters and where to place them on the screens. On Skate Cat, it was a bit more challenging to create the levels because I wanted to make levels quite different, and it was difficult to come up with new ideas.
DC: For Skate Cat, I implemented numerous features, whether for the general game physics, certain levels, or optimizing the code to overcome space limitations and the slowness of the game engine. Not to mention the hours spent fixing bugs found during testing phases. But it was genuinely interesting and exciting. With each project, collaborating with SJ (or Raftronaut, who composed the entire soundtrack of the game) is my favorite part—exchanging, sharing, and progressing all in the same direction. It’s a very enriching adventure for SJ.
Remember, Skate Cat is getting a physical NES release through Limited Run Games, and you can pre-order a copy for $60 right now.