Development of Stinkoman 20X6 Level 10

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This article is about the running gag of Stinkoman 20X6's tenth level being delayed, along with information about its marketing and release. For the walkthrough and cutscenes, see Stinkoman 20X6 Walkthrough Level 10. For the launch trailer, see Stinkoman Level 10 Launch Trailer.

The tenth and final level of Stinkoman 20X6 was released on December 20, 2020. Although the first nine levels were released over a six-month period in 2005, it would be fifteen years before the tenth level's release. This hiatus had been referenced a few times in the Homestar Runner body of work as multiple trailers and release date announcements were made throughout the years.

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[edit] Development

That didn't take too long now, did it?

[edit] Early Discussion

The first nine levels were released between March and September of 2005, with cutscenes foreshadowing level 10 as the final level. In a 2007 interview, the Brothers Chaps attributed the hiatus of level 10 to finding time to work with programmer Jonathan Howe — Howe had moved out of Atlanta which made communication more challenging, and since he charged a lower rate to the Brothers Chaps found it difficult to prioritize work on the game. Despite this, the Brothers Chaps explained that the trio were still actively planning the level and explained "[they] know ... exactly what's going to happen" and that the final boss will be "huge, very epic, and a nice end to the game". They also reflected that the game had a high level of difficulty, and discussed ideas to create an easier mode with mid-level checkpoints and additional extra lives (this would ultimately be implemented upon level 10's release).

In 2008, sketches of "proposed stinkoman level 10 baddies" Val Yancey and an unused robot were shared in the Sketchbook.

[edit] Revival

In 2017, the @StrongBadActual Twitter account posted an animated GIF of "Stinkoman level 10 relic[s]" featuring multiple enemy sprites. Programmer Jez Swanson (@jezzamonn) responded to this Tweet, volunteering to code the rest of the game. @StrongBadActual replied with "You better watch out or Videlectrix gone hire you! How do you feel about Actionscript 1.terrible?". Swanson replied that he was familiar with ActionScript, and went on to become the official programmer of level 10.

The first teaser trailer was released less than four months later, January 6 2018, announcing it would be released that same year. This teaser also stated that the level would be playable in Flash, and was later used as part of the opening cutscene for the level. Gameplay footage was shown days later, in the first installment of The Deleteheads Download.

[edit] Final Delays

Congratulations to Videlectrix!

By the end of 2018, another trailer was released — moving the release back to 2019 (humorously blaming Trogdor!! The Board Game for the delay). This trailer showed new graphics, as well as new Stinkomanual elements. This trailer also showcased a new "edge-fall respawn" feature, as well as a clip featuring Stinkoman becoming muscular and making small rocks float up off the ground, which would be used in the cutscene prior to level 10.3.

On December 5, 2019, the level was once again delayed. Stating Videlectrix was "not working on it enough/at all", an accompanying image suggested a release year of "2020?". Another teaser in February asked for difficulty suggestions, the image showed a portion of the level in which Stinkoman descends multiple floors, each one based on a previous level — this idea ended up being the entirety of level 10.2.

On May 28, 2020, Matt Chapman appeared on a Twitch live stream of the game Inhuman Conditions, and gave a more specific date:

Right now, I'm finally drawing near to finishing a 15-year-old Flash game called Stinkoman 20X6. We made level 9, I think, in 2005 and never finished level 10, which was supposed to be the last one. We're actually nearing completion on that, so that's sort of what we're doing right now. Mere months before they kill Flash completely forever. [...] We thought about putting it out, like, literally the day that they [discontinue Flash].
[...]
If you download Flash Player—which you should all get ready. Go find it, and find a secure version, 'cause by the end of the summer, you're gonna be able to play a game we should've finished 15 years ago. And not because we took 15 years to add all this awesome stuff, because we literally didn't work on it for 15 years. We're finally just, like, finishing it before Flash dies.

In a later Trogdor!! The Board Game live stream on August 9, 2020, Matt stated the following:

The big thing we're doing is we're finishing a Flash game that we started fifteen years ago, and trying to finish it before Flash dies forever in your browsers. So we've been working on Stinkoman level 10 for a Flash game that came out in like 2004 or something. But it's fun, there's going to be a whole awesome animated intro for it, we're treating it like it's the Sega CD re-release of this game that finally finished the game. So it'll have a super compressed QuickTime-looking intro, and big end bosses, and some other fun stuff. And as long as we finish it before December 31st at 12:59 or whatever, the day that Flash is supposed to finally die, hopefully people can play it and enjoy it. And then maybe we'll find a way to play it in some other format.

[edit] Release

The level was finally released on December 20, 2020, and the game was updated with a new intro cinematic, easier new mode, and a number of other small updates. While there is no clear plan for preserving the game after Flash stops being supported, Videlectrix wants to make it playable for everybody.

@StrongBadActual has teased that a Videlectrix album will be released on streaming services following level 10.

[edit] Appearances

[edit] Gallery

[edit] External Links

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