Tasty Tadpoles, a stealth puzzle game by ex-Firemint graphic designer, Mark White, is set to launch on the on the Apple App Store on May 9 for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Players are tasked with guiding a group of tadpoles across three ponds - garden, murky and amazon - and 75 levels, plus a puzzle mode. Using the touch controls, gamers interact with frogs, turtles, water beetles, bubbles, gateways, electric eels and whirlpool portals. Tasty Tadpoles also includes four unlockable characters and 14 challenges.
White was working as a digital designer in advertising for six years before he started at Firemint, where he "soaked in as much as I could." He moved on to Millipede Creative post-Firemint and began to work on Tasty Tadpoles in his spare time two years ago.
"It took me around about two years to complete, my (now) wife constantly reminds me of this because I had originally said to her ‘I'm just going to make a quick little game,'" White told Polygon. "In those two years I changed jobs, moved out of home and got married, so it kind of shows just how long these things can take."
White said it started off as a small concept where players had to try and survive in the pond for as long as they could but kept adding to the prototype as more ideas came to him. He then decided to make it a bigger level-based release.
"There were patches during development where it was really quite challenging to stay focused on the one project and make sure that I followed through with it, but once I started showing people the prototype, the encouragement really helped spur me on to keep going," White said. "Each night I went home after work and just chipped away at it, I created huge checklists and would just try check off a couple of things each night."
White believes Tasty Tadpole's cute and vibrant graphics and the "relaxed puzzle type feel of the game" will help make it stand out in the crowd.
"I'm a designer/Illustrator by day, so I'm hoping my skills there will help me get noticed initially," he explained. "And then, once people start to play, I'm hoping to achieve a nice relaxed feeling where you can sort of sit back and think your way through each pond,"