In this 'Game Facts' series I will pick a game and provide you with some related facts and statistics.
This week I've got my fact finding binoculars directed at Cuphead.
What is Cuphead?
Cuphead is a beautiful run and gun action game developed by Studio MDHR and released in late 2017. The game focuses mostly on boss battles, each one having its own unique mechanics. Cuphead's inspiration came from 1930s cartoons and the visuals and audio are created using the same techniques from that era. Everything is hand drawn, the backgrounds are painted, and they created vast amounts of the audio using props. Cuphead sold 1 million copies within 2 weeks of launching and reached the 3 million sales mark in August 2018.
The Moldenhauer brothers
Cuphead was the original brainchild of brothers Chad and Jared Moldenhauer. They both re-mortgaged their houses to fund Cuphead. For many years during development they had to work part-time jobs. The Canadian brothers formed the video game company 'Studio MDHR'. Cuphead is their first and only release to date.
You would be forgiven for thinking a game as aesthetically pleasing as Cuphead was aimed at the younger generation. You would be wrong, Cuphead is very challenging to play. The levels are difficult enough that it's unlikely you'll get past them without first dying a few times and learning the mechanics.
Don't allow the community to put you off with all the talk of how difficult Cuphead is. There is a "Simple" mode if you're struggling to get through the game but want to witness the beautiful aesthetics. For the few people that find Cuphead too easy there's another difficulty for you. Once you beat the game, you unlock hardcore mode that makes the game even tougher.
Good things come to those who wait
Development for Cuphead began back in 2010 with an initial release planned for 2014. They weren't sure that the concept for Cuphead would be valuable enough to justify creating it. It wasn't until Super Meat Boy released in 2010 that gave them the courage to pursue the idea. The Moldenhauer brothers delayed the game multiple times and ended up taking 7 years to finish the game.
The inspiration for Cuphead came from various different games including:
- Gunstar Heroes
- Contra III
- Contra Hard Corps
- Super Mario World
- The Thunderforce Series
- Street Fighter III
Changing the pattern
Cuphead strays away from the classic Mario formula where you rescue a princess from a castle. Instead the Moldenhauer brothers decided that the game will feature a Devil that you make a deal with after losing a bet.