David Lanham

drawings and
other creations

Ramp Champ

September 20, 2009

For most of this year I’ve been working on graphics and gameplay with the other great guys at the Iconfactory. The idea was simple: make the most amazing skee-ball game in the world. It turns out the the most amazing skee-ball game isn’t actually skee-ball. It’s a game we’ve come to call Ramp Champ.

The problem with skee-ball is that it offers zero variety. Beige cups and static holes aren’t the most compelling targets. But the idea is solid. So at the very core of Ramp Champ resides those great parts of skee-ball: rolling balls up a ramp to hit targets. Hitting targets gives you points and points give you tickets; the more tickets you get, the better prizes you can trade them in for. Clean, wholesome ingredients for fun. But it needed something to push it further, something that’d make playing the game as much fun as the prizes you get at the end. What the eight designers that worked on the game brought to it was just that: A wide variety of highly polished target areas with sounds, animations, and multiple progressions to add desperately needed depth to an otherwise stagnant game. It’s easy enough for casual gamers, but if you want more, then following target stories and progressions to uncover all the secrets and high value targets is a challenge that will satisfy the most hardcore of gamers.

We’ve ended up with the most beautiful, polished and well-crafted iPhone game that I know of. So far we have eight ramps released for the game and four more in development, each with it’s own theme and containing dozens of unique, hand-drawn pieces of artwork. I’ll let the screenshots below speak towards the care we’ve put into it:

I’ve had an amazingly fun time creating artwork for the game, so far I’ve drawn ducks, clowns, ninjas, demons, pirates, astronauts, martians, mermaids, monsters, dolphins, narwhals and even a few unicorns. And those are just a few things from the lanes I’ve worked on. There are seven other designers working on the game. It’s just as much fun to work on as it is to play! All the designers have wracked our brains to give each lane unique ways to play, targets to hit and puzzles to figure out; critical thinking and problem solving at it’s best.

You can check out more shots and videos of the game in the media section of the Ramp Champ website (which has just as much attention to detail as the game).

Ramp Champ is available now in the iTunes app store for only $1.99, cheaper than playing real skee-ball!