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PixelJunk 1-4: Drumroll Please …

Dylan Cuthbert's Avatar + Posted by Dylan Cuthbert on May 25, 2009 // President and Executive Producer, Q-Games Ltd.

Hey PixelJunk fans,

A couple of weeks ago we unveiled PixelJunk 1-4 in trailer form to the masses and had a HUGE response! I suppose we deserved it because we simultaneously launched our naming contest for the game as well. For those who missed it we decided to let you, the fans, have a go at naming our game for us. It all began to snowball as news sites picked up on the competition and our servers crashed a couple of times from the load!

In just one week we got over 100,000 visitors to http://pixeljunk.jp and 10,000 people offered up ideas for a name based on the trailer. Even though the trailer’s resolution left a lot to be desired, we got a ridiculous amount of praise… and the team’s ego has been inflated a bit, which is a good thing, because now we’ll have to work extra specially hard to live up to everyone’s expectations! :-)

Anyway, we are now proud to announce that the name of the game has been picked! It will be called PixelJunk Shooter. Andy, the artist behind the style of the game, has knocked up a stunning logo that emphasizes the liquid element really well, as you can see below!

PJ Shooter Logo

The lucky winner, picked from a hat of about 8 other people who voted for the same name, is Mario Paquet from Canada! We chose the name because: 1) it’s simple, 2) it describes the main thing you do in the game, and 3) it makes a great logo!

The other runner-up names were:

  • PixelJunk Depths – Thomas Ella
  • PixelJunk Atlantis – Takuhiro Hara
  • PixelJunk Caves – Chi Lo
  • PixelJunk Blaster – Edward Stumpfel
  • PixelJunk S.O.S! – Derrick Kross

Other people voted for these names of course, but the above runners-up were picked out of a hat for each name in turn, so congratulations! T-shirts will be winging their way to you.

The most popular name suggested by a long shot was PixelJunk Elements, but we decided that it didn’t capture the shooting side of the game well enough and at the worst people might think it was a game about the weather. “Depths” almost became the chosen name but our producer at Sony Santa Monica, Deborah Mars, sounded like she had a lisp when she said it, so we dropped that one early on. We needed to choose a name everyone can enunciate. ;-)

Thanks for the incredible response and vibe we got from everyone. We are going to make this game a smash hit! If you manage to get into E3 next week you’ll be able to play a newer demo than the one shown in the video which has a number of cool new things in it… including co-op play!

//Add Your Own

343 Comments   3 Replies

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201

+ abrasion on May 25th, 2009 at 6:31 pm said:

I chose “elements” for what it’s worth.


202

+ WhiteSpy on May 25th, 2009 at 6:31 pm said:

I thought the idea of the contest was to come up with a creative, interesting name. Shooter is a rather unimaginative title. Oh well, congats to the winner, hopefully the game is better than the title. :) My entry was Pixel Junk: Passage


203

+ AKidNamedJustin on May 25th, 2009 at 6:34 pm said:

@ Dylan. It really sucks to come on here and talk smack about your selection considering you guys have provided us two really awesome games (and one pretty awesome game) and you have supported those games really well. On top of that, Shooter looks like it’s going to exceed even the greatness that was Monsters and Eden.

I personally think the name is rubbish, but it is JUST a criticism of the name. I will buy anything (ANYTHING) you guys put out. Keep up the good work!


204

+ citee-vibez on May 25th, 2009 at 6:35 pm said:

wow i have been a customer of sony ever since it came out i am happy though but u need to help out with the bugs on the playstation network anyways thanks for me having some thing to do on my spare time


205

+ AKidNamedJustin on May 25th, 2009 at 6:36 pm said:

@ Dylan (forgot to include this in the post above)…are we to take this as an indication that the game’s primary mechanic will be shooting and that the puzzle solving/rescue aspects of the game will play second fiddle to the shooting?


206

+ Shinra1003 on May 25th, 2009 at 6:37 pm said:

Game looks good, but really, I hope this name is some kind a joke… The other options were a lot more imaginative and interesting.


207

+ abrasion on May 25th, 2009 at 6:40 pm said:

#173, the precision and repetitiveness of knowing tower layout in Monsters is what made the game very addictive.

I admit it’s frustrating sometimes and can be very hard but playing in co-op is awesome, I recently finished every single map in hardest mode, co-op with rainbows, my little islands have all gone to sleep now :( (the map changes to nighttime)


208

+ spacefox00 on May 25th, 2009 at 6:40 pm said:

“we got a ridiculous amount of praise… and the team’s ego has been inflated a bit”

Not anymore I guess, after reading these posts.

Honestly, the name is ok. Not very unique or creative, but I guess it’s fine. Better than most of the runner ups.

And I really love the logo, props to Andy! =D


209

+ bravo9zero on May 25th, 2009 at 6:43 pm said:

@ Dylan Cuthbert,

We love the game, Looks very good,
We just think the title lacks any real “spark” to It,
for lack of a better word! :)

We are the customers, People who will buy the game, Just giving you some helpful “Feedback” on the name.


Dylan Cuthbert's Avatar

210

+ Dylan Cuthbert on May 25th, 2009 at 6:44 pm said:

The name will grow on everyone – that’s the point of choosing a simpler name that we can mold into whatever meaning we decide.

Shooting jets of magma, shooting streams of water, shooting enemies, missiles, lasers, plasma spread weapons etc.

With any competition of this nature, whatever name we choose there were bound to be at least 9999 people who disagree with our choice. :-)

For those of you who can make it into E3, go play the demo and enjoy yourselves!


211

+ chasimus on May 25th, 2009 at 6:51 pm said:

You just had to give it the laziest name ever, didn’t you? At least the name I came up with had 10 seconds of thought behind it.


212

+ bravo9zero on May 25th, 2009 at 6:51 pm said:

Oh demo you say! I’ll shut up now :P
You win :)


213

+ AKidNamedJustin on May 25th, 2009 at 6:56 pm said:

@ 208

And like 0 people who agree? I really think this reaction goes far beyond bitter tears because our individual names didn’t win. bravo9zero has a good point. The people on the PSBlog are you most staunch supporters and the evangelists of your games. They are the same people who are almost unanimously laughing at the name…and your attitude is, “it will grow on you”?


214

+ abrasion on May 25th, 2009 at 7:07 pm said:

What is wrong with even Pixel Junk Rescue? That’s what you do right? This name may well scare off the more casual crowd.

Demo is mandatory! (and all regions please Dylan – Australia / EU are sick of no PJM demo, all my mates won’t buy PJM because there’s no demo for them!)


215

+ abrasion on May 25th, 2009 at 7:08 pm said:

When is the demo coming to PSN?


216

+ Chubear on May 25th, 2009 at 7:09 pm said:

@197

I don’t think the general consensus with comments so far has been one of “Oh noes, mine was better” even though you have those comments within some posts.

I think the general consensus with most people is that ANY other name would have been better than shooter.

Hey, it’s your game and you guys can name it what ever you want but I’m thinking gamers will raise an eye brow if you guys ever did another contest like this one. You guys obviously got a lot of “Shooter” suggestions but I didn’t think the contest was meant to find most similar names submitted though.

Well, just looking at every gaming forum that has this breaking news the responses have been glaringly negative and it’s not because THEIR submissions weren’t the winners.


217

+ bravo9zero on May 25th, 2009 at 7:09 pm said:

Also I just don’t think the game will stand out much on the PS store.

This game needs a catchy, intresting title like “Eden” had,


218

+ mafecto on May 25th, 2009 at 7:10 pm said:

Wow, that name is terrible. So were the runners up. Fail.

Game looks great, though.


219

+ chasimus on May 25th, 2009 at 7:11 pm said:

@212

I agree. I picked “Elements” and still think it’s the best name for this game (given that it was the vast majority), but PJ Rescue totally fits what you guys are going for. Not Shooters. I already have enough ‘shooters’ in my catalog. I want something that POPS!


220

+ Poopookakabumbum on May 25th, 2009 at 7:17 pm said:

I liked “Pixel Junk On A Physical Disc” better.


221

+ Shiromaji on May 25th, 2009 at 7:22 pm said:

I personally think the name is awful…

I’ll still buy it though :)


222

+ Chubear on May 25th, 2009 at 7:29 pm said:

@208

Dude, you guys have an overwhelming majority of people who think the name is awful and you think it’ll grow on people?

IF you had even 50% of the fans telling you it was a good/decent pick and an appropriate title I could see that but dude, look through these posts; over 95% of the unique IDs are telling you it’s horrible.

It’s the same on other gaming forums. The most positive I’ve seen to this regard is “Meh, don’t care about the name, it’s good enough”

… wait, so what exactly was the point in getting us to waste our time pretending the fans had any influence on the game’s title? Wasn’t the whole exercise to engage the fans? .. well, I guess it did :/


223

+ SilverPR on May 25th, 2009 at 7:36 pm said:

got a better Idea, put the demo available on the PSN the week of E3 and you can ease a little bit some of the people here. I will say that the name was…. average but maybe the intentions you guys are gonna demonstrate with the game will make us always refer to this game not for been just another Pixel Junk game but just…….. Shooter.


224

+ whatisdelicious on May 25th, 2009 at 7:38 pm said:

Personally I feel like it’s the naming of the Revolution all over again. Yeah, we all eventually got used to the name “Wii” and it’s a huge success and everything, but everybody still thinks it’s a dumb name.

So whatever. Shooter’s not that bad of a name. I still don’t think it really fits that great because you don’t call Mario “Jumper” despite that being the main focus of the game.

It’s like if you called Rez “Shooter” instead. It’d just be kind of dumb.

But again, whatever. Not a terrible name, but pretty soon we’ll all have forgotten. I used to not be able to say “Nintendo Wii” without spitting venom, but now I don’t even think about it anymore.


225

+ CrashSpyro on May 25th, 2009 at 7:46 pm said:

I guess this is proof that developers should stay away from contests related to naming their games.


226

+ Trioptical on May 25th, 2009 at 7:50 pm said:

Just goes to show that there’s more to it than just a creative name. It’s got to work on many levels, for a lot of different reasons.


227

+ abort_user on May 25th, 2009 at 7:51 pm said:

wow. just wow.

that has got to be the single stupidest name ive ever seen. it actually makes me want the game LESS. thanks.

and i guess all the fans know the naming thing was just a ruse. and in the end our feedback means absolutely nothing.


228

+ kdiep on May 25th, 2009 at 7:57 pm said:

@225
Not really I was fairly satisfied with FEAR 2: Project Origin. PJ Shooter just seemed too plain and simple, which actually sounds like is the reason why they chose it. I would go as far as to say even PJ 4-1 had more cling to it.

To Dylan:
I guess I’m just a bit disappointed that after all the entries, Shooter came on top. Not really disappointed that my name didn’t get up there. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if your prediction is true; that the name will grow on me.


229

+ gunm14 on May 25th, 2009 at 8:00 pm said:

I think the name wouldn’t have been so controversial if there wasn’t a naming contest built around it. I hope this is a lesson on how not to market a game.

Crazy because the game itself looks like a real blast to play.


230

+ Dardantuan on May 25th, 2009 at 8:08 pm said:

Just throwing out my 2 cents on the chosen name… It sucks. Such an uninspired, unoriginal name for what appears to be an amazingly innovative and original game.

Either way, I will be purchasing it day one, it looks like fun.

I don’t think the name is going to hook in the average, uninformed joe, though. The PSN is already flooded with too many ‘shooter’ games. Pixel Junk Shooter should have been given a better name to set it apart from them. Even without the contest (which I didn’t participate in) I would have thought this name was pretty dumb.


231

+ Ghost_Shrimp on May 25th, 2009 at 8:09 pm said:

Hate it, but still buying day one.


232

+ ihatereading369 on May 25th, 2009 at 8:18 pm said:

Wow, 10,000 names and the best you can choose is Shooter? Any of the runner ups would be better than this.

Lame to be honest.


233

+ libregkd on May 25th, 2009 at 8:20 pm said:

Hate the name, its complete crap. Buying the game nonetheless.


Dylan Cuthbert's Avatar

234

+ Dylan Cuthbert on May 25th, 2009 at 8:26 pm said:

@226 has it right – the name has to work on many levels, and because it is a name that we use worldwide across a huge number of non-english speaking territories it needs to be fairly readable and understandable to all.

We carefully went through *all* your entries one by one and Shooter was actually one of the last ideas we came across, and funnily enough initially I rejected it because of some of the reasons mentioned in these comments.

However, over a few days of going through other names and trying them out we kept coming back to the fun-sounding pick-up-and-play simplicity of Shooter. It really grew on me and the team. The game’s core *is* shooting, as well as being a strange puzzle hybrid with the fluid dynamics. We have “incoming boss” battles, and lots of aliens to kill, different weapons, shields etc.

All I can say is give it a bit more of a chance folks!

btw, another reason why some of your names weren’t selected was because they sounded good for future games in the PixelJunk series!


235

+ DKShadow on May 25th, 2009 at 8:31 pm said:

“btw, another reason why some of your names weren’t selected was because they sounded good for future games in the PixelJunk series!”

So if one of the other entries is indeed used in a future game, will the person(s) who submitted the name be credited like with this one?

I’m not a fan of the name “Shooter” at this point, but I loved Monsters and enjoyed Eden and I’m definately also on board for this one and the upcoming PixelJunk Dungeons!


236

+ D-Squad3 on May 25th, 2009 at 8:36 pm said:

All I have to say is that when about 99% of the people don’t like the name, there is definitely something wrong and it should be dealt with more professionally than “Too Bad” because that’s what they’re pretty much implying.


237

+ spunnups on May 25th, 2009 at 8:37 pm said:

PJ Elements was my choice, but who cares, PF games rock!


238

+ abrasion on May 25th, 2009 at 8:44 pm said:

Dylan, demo plz.


239

+ KuchN on May 25th, 2009 at 8:49 pm said:

Oh come on Shooter? Like in First Person Shooter, can a game get any more mainstreem.
Couldn’t participate cause I#m from europe but my choise would have been PJ Fury.


240

+ KuchN on May 25th, 2009 at 8:49 pm said:

I ment “game name” not only name.


241

+ DNAgent on May 25th, 2009 at 8:54 pm said:

I won’t be buying this. Pixeljunk Shooter? Yeah, that name isn’t exciting so i’m sure the actual game won’t be exciting either.


242

+ omgCRAZY on May 25th, 2009 at 8:55 pm said:

I really do not like the choice PixelJunk made on this one. Elements is by far the best name, no one is going to think the game is about weather and personally I see Shooter as a much more deceiving title than Elements.

If Elements was the most popular choice obviously your fanbase believes it is a good choice and wanted to focus on the water and lava rather than the shooting.


    Dylan Cuthbert's Avatar

     

    + Dylan Cuthbert on May 25th, 2009 at 9:22 pm said:

    The core of the game is shooting though (maybe not enough of that showed through in the video), and so the choice Elements doesn\’t sound action-packed enough. This game is much more action packed than our previous titles. It\’s incredible fun.


243

+ simoomt on May 25th, 2009 at 9:03 pm said:

I’m going to be quite honest, that is really not a very good name. It doesn’t get across the mood portrayed in the trailer at all, nor the concept of the opposing elements, and on top of that “Shooter” is a term associated with first person shooters by nearly all gamers. Elements, Depths, Cave, even Blaster all would be more illustrative, and be more in line with the titles of the better games in the series (Eden and Monsters), rather than the ultra generic Racers.

The logo’s style would work just fine with any of those names, its not like the picture has much to do with “shooter” other than containing the word.


244

+ TUSTIN1 on May 25th, 2009 at 9:06 pm said:

It’s not that the name was part of a contest, and no, it won’t grow on me, it’s just a really dumb title.

If there had been no contest and you had announced the name of the game as PixelJunk: Shooter, I would have thought it was a dumb title.

Just because your vehicle (what the -blank- is it anyway?) shoots something doesn’t make it a shooter. My entry “Primordial Ballista” was a little long winded, but guess what, Ballista means shooter and is a heck of a lot catchier. Not that I care because I really don’t need a t-shirt LOL, but you’re shooting yourselves in the foot with that title…


    Dylan Cuthbert's Avatar

     

    + Dylan Cuthbert on May 25th, 2009 at 9:20 pm said:

    Haha, I remember Primordial Ballista – definitely a little long-winded! Certainly very unique tho! I think you were the only one with that name.

    All I can say is that PixelJunk Shooter really does sum up the game perfectly – just wait and see. Trust us!


245

+ FURY__UNLEASHED on May 25th, 2009 at 9:18 pm said:

“PixelJunk Shooter” is pretty weak, actually. I think “PixelJunk Splash” sounds much better; it actually has an identity.

It’s never too late to change the name ;)


246

+ Jackal888 on May 25th, 2009 at 9:21 pm said:

I chose Pixeljunk: Caverns. I do not like the new name. I thought the environment was more interesting than the shooti
You still have my money, I am just underwhelmed.


247

+ sonicthemonkey on May 25th, 2009 at 9:23 pm said:

Pixel Junk Shooter, wow that’s…really generic.


248

+ LLAMACODE on May 25th, 2009 at 9:29 pm said:

I was the first person to suggest “elements”
check the comments of the announcement post

don’t you think I should get a shirt to?
please *puppy dog eyes*


249

+ Avatard on May 25th, 2009 at 9:30 pm said:

Darn, I was sure PixelJunk Chambers would win me some prizes. Oh well Shooter works, although I think of an FPS when I think shooter. Maybe that’s the ploy…make people think it’s an FPS to get more downloads. Genius!


250

+ grashopper on May 25th, 2009 at 9:42 pm said:

Can’t wait to play it…hoping we see a demo soon! :) Logo looks awesome


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