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Developer Tiny Speck releases 10,000 art assets from its canceled game Glitch

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

The developer behind the short-lived and stylish massively multiplayer online game Glitch is giving the game a second life by releasing more than 10,000 pieces of art, animation and code from the canceled game to the public for free.

On the game's official website, developer Tiny Speck says it released Glitch's assets "in the hopes that they help others in their creative endeavours and build on Glitch's legacy of simple fun, creativity and an appreciation for the preposterous."

In an email to Polygon, Tiny Speck founder and president Stewart Butterfield said the asset release includes millions of frames of animation, the world's flora and fauna, hundreds of unique characters, thousand of environmental art assets and much more.

"The team at Tiny Speck put years of work into the art for Glitch: many thousands of hours by a hugely talented team [spent] on illustration, animation, character designs, effects, avatar systems and environmental," said Butterfield. "The game didn't make it, but [we] couldn't stand the thought of all of that creative work shuttered away forever. Making it freely available to all as a public good is a worthy legacy for the project. We hope it will be useful for other creative projects, from student and artistic work to unfettered commercial use."

Glitch's assets are available for download from the game's website and GitHub under a Creative Commons CC0 "no rights reserved" license.

For a look at Glitch's varied characters, items and environments, watch this highlight video.

Glitch, a free-to-play, Flash-based multiplayer game, was originally launched in September 2011, but "unlaunched" a few weeks later so developer Tiny Speck could address gameplay issues. In November 2012, Tiny Speck announced it was shutting the MMO down the following month.

"Unfortunately, Glitch has not attracted an audience large enough to sustain itself and based on a long period of experimentation and our best estimates, it seems unlikely that it ever would," the developer said at the time. "Glitch was very ambitious and pushed the limits of what could be done in a browser-based game ... and then those limits pushed back."

Tiny Speck is currently working on Slack, a team communication service currently in preview release.