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Developer: Three Rings Design, Inc., United States, 2006
IGF Award: Winner for Technical Excellence, Nominee for Seumas McNally Grand Prize

image from bang!howdy
Bang!Howdy. Three Rings Design, Inc.

Log on to the wild west in this tactical multiplayer online strategy game.

Each player controls a team of units with different capabilities to compete in a variety of gameplay scenarios.

This hybrid between real-time and turn-based strategy game mechanics emphasises casual gameplay, social interaction and fun.

Developer's statement
Bang!Howdy attempts to strike a balance between the off-putting complexity of most modern strategy games and the shallow, easily mastered mechanics of many casual games.

Aimed neither at the hardcore gamer, nor the strictly casual audience, Bang!Howdy targets players that enjoy digital entertainment and are starting to seek more sophisticated experiences.

The game also embraces the inherently social nature of Internet multiplayer play, providing tools to help players make new friends and keep in touch as they play.

As an independent developer, we have been able to break free of the spiral of increasing complexity that grips the Windows XP strategy game market, as well as target the growing market of not-hardcore, not-casual gamers emerging as computer games transition from being a strange new media to being an accepted part of modern life.

About the developer
Three Rings Design was founded in San Francisco in 2001 as an independent games company focused on making casual persistent world online games. Michael Bayne designed Bang!Howdy, and with the help of Rick Keagy, the art director, and a small team of engineers and artists, produced it over the course of two years.

Their previous projects include Puzzle Pirates, an MMOArrPG and Game Gardens, a website where hobbyist game developers can host multiplayer games and collaborate on their creation. Three Rings is currently working on Whirled, a massively multiplayer world with a focus on fostering and supporting micro-communities and providing the tools to allow the players to create games and a virtual world that reflect the values and interests of their communities.

Michael Bayne: Designer, Producer, Programmer
Andrzej Kapolka: Lead Programmer
Mark Johnson: Programmer
Rick Keagy: Lead Artist
Jon Demos: Designer, Artist
Nick Popovich: Level Designer, Artist
Joshua Grames: ArtistIan McConville: ArtistSomaTone, Inc: Music

Platform developed for: Windows XP, Mac OS X or Linux
Development time: 16 Months