It began in late August of 1996. My Dad had given my
younger brother Peter and me a challenge. He said "well,
you can play games, but can you make them?"
I was at a Best Buy later that month, I came across a book
called Teach Yourself Game Programming in 21 days by Andre
Lamothe. I bought it and our "company" Curly
Productions was born.
I was 16 and my brother was 12. After covering some
topics in a book about C and reading the first few chapters
of TYGP, Peter and I got bold enough to get started.
The masterpiece we chose to create was called "Kick the
Skank." Our first build was a single skank name Paul
S. Skank that slid from left to right across the screen and
a player named Edward Curly who could approach Paul and kick
him. The results were encouraging and after about a
year of work as school permitted, we had created a saucy little
In KTS you play the role of Edward Curly, a red-haired boy
with a mile wide grin and a mission. He's watched once
thriving lawns turn to tobacco fields, chartreuse hair become
a status symbol and the average number of body piercings go
from two to twenty-two. Ed's sick and not just from second-hand
smoke. On doctor's orders, Ed dons a pair of steel-toed
boots, borrows a gas mask, and now must kick all of the skanks
in the world.....both male, and female.
But...the game wasn't fun. In fact, gameplay was
quite poor. There was only one skank, it was a one player
game, and although it had bonuses, sound, music, and 8-way
scrolling, it ran far too fast and was hardly something to
boast about. In addition, the underlying code was a
mess because there was no design and everything was just thrown
together. We decided to take a step back and here was
the announcement we placed on the Kick the Skank website:
Yes folks, you heard correctly, Kick the Skank is going
through a major redesign. We finally decided that the current
version didn't reflect enough Curly brilliance. To fix
this we are recoding KTS from the ground up. It will be a
while before the clouds part, the sun shines, and KTS once
again debuts in beta stage.
Now we knew what we wanted to put in the game and how to make
it all work. We sat down, dreamed a bit and drafted
a high level design document. We knew how to implement
everything since we essentially had already made the game.
To play it safe however, we made little demos of the things
that were new so we could go about them the best way.
One of the first things we created was a graphical level editor
with a complete windows-like interface. Formerly we
had to make levels in Windows notepad and it was tedious and
hard to visualize what we were doing. Thus began the
second coming of Kick the Skank.
To assist you in editing the level here is a translation of the
characters. If you want to change the name of the level, show spaces
with the ~ (twiddle).
& = dark blue balls
. = orange hotdog
# = blue orb
% = border: don't move these or screwy things will happen
< = rock
> = orange orb
: = bush
* = pathway
; = red orb
- = yellow x
+ = purple triangles
= = savage
@ = tree
The tools we used for development were simple. For graphics
we used a DOS program called Neopaint. It wasn't a robust
program, but it ran in the same resolution (320x200) as our
game so we could see exactly what our graphics would look
like. We carefully handpicked our palette of 256 colors so
we could support transparency and did most of everything pixel
by pixel. For sound effects we used a windows editor called
Goldwave. For music we used various free MIDI files we found
on the web. We used a sound library from Miles Design for
audio playback in the actual game. Our development environment
was Visual C++ version 1 and later 1.52. For debugging
we used CodeView debugger for DOS.
In concept, Kick the Skank is very similar to the game Super
Bomberman. The skanks are your enemies and you will lose a
life if you touch them. There are several skanks running around
in your world and you must kick them all. To kick them you
use what are called foot boxes. You start with one in your
arsenal and obtain more. A foot box is similar to a bomb.
You set it out and after a few seconds, it explodes feet.
It has equal ability to smack you or a skank, so be careful.
Throughout the world are trees and bushes. If you kick them
they explode and bonuses appear. Some of the bonuses are good
and some are bad. For example, an Uzi will let you shoot skanks
whereas beer will whack up your controls. Next, the skanks
have two tasty tricks in their bags. They can toss cigarette
butts at you or clock you with their wallets. This keeps you
on your toes. Finally, when you kill a skank, the mafia comes
after you. When a mafia man is within a certain distance,
you are unable to put out a foot box.
So now you know all about the game. Below you will find a
link to download an old beta of the game. There is one issue
with running the game on new machines which you should be
aware of. Unless you have legacy DOS sound drivers installed
on your computer, chances are you will not be able experience
KTS with sound. To play KTS extract kts.zip
to a folder on your hard drive. In that folder you will find
a readme which contains important information about what the
controls are and what the bonuses do. You
should read the readme before playing.
the game, double click on the icon named ktsnosound
This will run KTS without sound and is the recommended method
for playing KTS on a newer computer. If you would like to
run KTS with sound, follow the instructions in the readme
and double click on kts
There are no guarantees that sound will work successfully
on your computer, so try it without sound first.
The level editor is called levedit.exe
and information on its use is also contained in the readme
Deathmatch play is more fun than normal play, so if you can
snag a friend to play with, go for it. The 'n
key cycles through the levels if you find the level too hard.
This release was made 5/12/2000 and is essentially the game
as it stands now. There are still a few minor things
that need to be done, but this is where we halted our production.
Thank you for taking the time to read about the game. Enjoy!