Ron Gilbert’s first project after leaving Double Fine earlier this month is Scurvy Scallywags in The Voyage to Discover the Ultimate Sea Shanty: A Musical Match-3 Pirate RPG, a mobile game he’s developing with Deathspank co-creator Clayton Kauzlaric.
“A little over a year ago I pulled a match-3 prototype out of the closest and started working on it,” Gilbert wrote on his blog. “There was something about the way the board collapsed in Realms of Gold that I really liked. Clayton and I screwed around with it for a bit, then he hit upon a way to make the collapsing work a lot better. Rather than the type of match you made dictating the direction the board collapsed, have the board collapse in the direction you swiped. I made this change and it felt fantastic and very intuitive.
“An odd side effect of doing this was you could move pieces around the board. So unlike Puzzle Quest—and just about every other match-3 RPG that sprang up after it—in Scurvy Scallywags you actually move your hero/pirate around the board and position her/him next to enemies to do battle. It creates this new layer to the matching that is a lot of fun.”
According to Gilbert, Scurvy Scallywags ought to be out on iOS in the “next month or so.” He intends to release an Android version later.