Based in Hamilton, New Zealand
5 November, 2015
iPhone / iPad
DescriptionSimpulls is a cartoony and quirky swipe based old-school matching game. Unleash the powers of the special Simpulls you discover on your journey through their lands to help you overcome the variety of challenges you encounter.
Simpulls is our ode to some of our past favourite puzzle games: Magical Drop, Puyo Puyo and Puzzle Bobble. We wanted to bring something new to touch puzzle gaming, something not bejeweled inspired.
So ready your fingers for some fast paced Simpull matching action. Save Simpulls by matching together 3 or more of the same color. Grab and release Simpulls using simple swipe gestures. Discover the lost tribes of the Simpull warriors, mysterious mages and you might even encounter the rare freedom portals. Are you ready?
HistoryFive years ago, after releasing our last game, we went on a prototyping bender to try come up with something worth pursuing. The prototype that stuck was Simpulls. This prototype was heavily inspired by Daves favourite classic arcade puzzle game - Magical Drop. The column based matching gameplay seemed like a natural fit for a touch screen device.
One of our friends mentioned that there was already a Magical Drop game on iOS, Magical Drop Touch. I was excited to check it out, but when I saw it... I was disappointed, they had done nothing to make the game a mobile game, they'd just shoehorned their existing game in, I honestly thought it was insulting to the brand.
In 2010 Linkoidz was released. Linkoidz is also a magical drop inspired game, but they took the time to make it a proper mobile game. When I first heard about Linkoidz, I had a sinking feeling in my stomach, "Damn, we've been beaten to this awesome idea.". I played it and it was a really good, well done game. Seeing this broke my desire to work on Simpulls, I did minor touches to it, but didn't really put in a bit effort on it. A while later Diablo 3 came out, and we played the crap out of it. Many many months were spent playing it instead of working on games. Eventually the joy of Diablo 3 and the pain of being beaten to release passed and I felt ready to work on Simpulls again.
During 2013 we spent a lot of time polishing Simpulls and did a hack-and-dash port of it to Unity to enter some Unity Competitions. We were amazed to win the New Zealand Unity competition and get "Best Gameplay" in the international Unity competition. This recognition helped shake of some of the feelings of imposter syndrome that had been lingering over me. This was a real high point in the development of Simpulls.
Next year I went to GDC 2014. I showed Simpulls to as many people as I could, and randomly showed it to Craig and Gavin, the developers behind Linkoidz. They were really happy to see that someone was having a crack at making a Magical Drop inspired game and have been very supportive of Simpulls since.
It turns out Games take a long time to finish, especially once Jacob had his first child, the amount of time he could dedicate to working on Simpulls was.... very minimal. Dave kept poking away at it, and eventually got it in to a state we were happy to release. Nothing too exciting about this part of the story, you should just go play the game :)
- Simple yet deep and engaging swipe based gameplay
- The accessibility you deserve combined with the challenge you desire
- 70 intense levels full of variety
- 4 Areas each with their own unique powers and difficulties
Logo & Icon
Awards & Recognition
- "'Simpulls' is a Fun Puzzler Inspired by 'Magical Drop'"
- Carter Dotson, Touch Arcade
Ironshod is a Small (2 part timers) Mobile studio situated in Beautiful Hamilton, New Zealand.
More information on Ironshod, our logo & relevant media are available here.