About Me

terry_may2014_lowres

Heya! My name’s Terry Cavanagh. I’m 30, and I’m an independent game developer from Monaghan, Ireland, currently living in London.

My best known game at this point is probably Super Hexagon. Other games I’ve made include VVVVVV, At a Distance, and Don’t Look Back.

As well as updating this blog, I also keep a fairly active twitter account (@terrycavanagh). I used to run a freeware curation website called FreeIndieGam.es. I’m currently taking a break from curation.

If you’re a youtuber interested in making videos of my games, please feel free! Here’s an official statement saying that it’s ok to monitize footage of my games.

You can contact me by email here.

90 Comments so far

  1. Greig Whitton on March 6th, 2009

    Hi Terry

    I played Don’t Look Back at Kongregate and was seriously blown away. WOW! Awesome, awesome game! I really hope you develop more games along these lines.

    Cheers,
    Greig

  2. Andy N. on March 8th, 2009

    Terry,

    I was witness to your beautiful game Don’t Look Back over at kongregate. It’s the most moving and deeply thought-out flash game I’ve ever played. You accomplish so much even without words but simply the ambiance and the feel of the game from start to finish draws you in and leaves you with an eerie sadness mixed with wonder and despair once all is said and done. Good job Terry, this is one game that won’t leave those who’ve played unchanged.

    -Andy

  3. Jonatan S on March 8th, 2009

    Hi, just wanted to tell you I really liked Don’t Look Back. Best Orpheus-based game I’ve played since Battle of Olympus on the NES.
    I think it’s a great example of how to combine gameplay and narrative into a coherent whole.

    Keep up the good work!

  4. Jay on March 16th, 2009

    Hiya, just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed Don’t Look Back. The implicit narrative is fantastic; better storytelling than most commercial releases manage.

  5. Jonas.k on March 19th, 2009

    Well, as everybody said, Don’t look back happens to do a lot with almost nothing. Congratulations.

  6. Robert on March 21st, 2009

    I played Don’t Look Back on Newgrounds and I loved it. Are you going to release anymore of your games on the internet?

  7. Tom on March 24th, 2009

    Like most people here, I found you through Don’t Look Back, but I enjoyed Pathways so much more than anything else that I played of yours.

    Your simplicity in style adds to the story and atmosphere of your games, and you don’t sacrifice message for gameplay. This is a very rare thing to find in game makers these days, and I greatly appreciate it when I do find it.

    Your games are excellent, don’t let anyone tell you any differently. Thank you for creating them.

    – Tom

  8. Demian on March 24th, 2009

    Just another post saying how awesome Don’t Look Back is…

    The gameplay merges beautifully with the story.

  9. Paul on March 24th, 2009

    Greetings from the U.S.A.

    Just finished Don’t Look Back — very enjoyable experience!

    I’m surprised with your young age that you seem to have nailed that 80’s retro style so well.

    I look forward to seeing your other projects.

    Cheers!

  10. Ed on April 2nd, 2009

    Stumbled on your website last week, and have been playing your games constantly. Pathways and DLB are fun AND thought provoking, Xoldiers and Self Destruct are action packed, and I am absolutely addicted to Mind Control Rocket. Its concept and execution are very deep, even if you threw it together as quick as you say. Can’t wait to play whatever else you have in the works.

  11. Vierphoria on April 13th, 2009

    Dear Terry

    I’ve just finished your amazingly brilliant little game “Pathways”. To be subtle – I was mesmerized. Honestly, it was the most touching game I’ve played for this entire year. It is exactly this kind of non-gameish gameplay that in the future will define the medium of games as an artform.

    That counts for Judith and Don’t Look Back As Well. I’m really impressed by the way you implement literate themes in your games.

    Best regards
    Vierphoria

  12. John on April 27th, 2009

    Keep doing what you’re doing the way you do it. Pathways was beautiful, Judith was haunting and Don’t Look Back was inspiring.

  13. FellowIrishman on April 28th, 2009

    Hi Terry, great gamesa, DOn’t look back was great!
    The colour scheme reminds me of those old ccartoons RTE used to have on in the 80’s…

  14. Anonymous on June 19th, 2009

    Hello Terry. Just another comment to say Don’t Look Back is a fantastic game.

    Best regards.

  15. dead.flag.blues on July 6th, 2009

    Your games really are something different..
    I’ve played dont look back about 15 times,
    like everyone has said the dream-like ambiance of the story merges perfectly with the dark setting and quiet music

    one question-
    im starting to get into flash cs4 to make games like you have…

    how long have you been using flash?
    or do you use something else?

  16. an taoiseach on August 13th, 2009

    don’t look back 2! G’wan, for the craic, like :D
    based on the japanese myth of izanami and izanagi?

  17. ThirdBM on August 28th, 2009

    Hi Terry. Your games are inspiring me so much. They’re all amazing.
    Especially Judith and Don’t Look Back.. love their sence of gloom with moderated visual.
    Keep up the great work!

  18. Anon on October 28th, 2009

    Don’t look back really made my day. I love the atmosphere and mood, the music was a good choice. I’m a fan of your work.

  19. whitney on November 5th, 2009

    the game looks cool if i could even play

  20. D3 on November 6th, 2009

    Terry start your own small indie firm. People you trust. You’ve got the concepts in your head, but you need 8 more hands and 50 hours in every day. Pioneer something, and get some exposure. Maybe… “Couples gaming,” if I could be so bold as to coin a new meme… (thinking about Best Years here…)

    You’ve got unique styles and themes and ideas – push them hard.

    DO IT NOW

  21. mirabelka on December 11th, 2009

    hm, i just play VVVVVV on newgrounds…
    i really liked, but it looks like it was someone else who submited it there, not you?

  22. Jake on December 12th, 2009

    Just beat your beta of VVVVVV. I am amazed. Great game, although I did have some troubles in some spots, very challenging. I enjoyed it very much so and I can’t wait to play the game in it’s entirety.

  23. Chris Geehan on January 2nd, 2010

    Hey Terry,

    It’s really incredible to see other creative outlets around Ireland popping up, I am rather new to it myself, but I really love the look and flow behind of your game. I will be buying a copy. I’ve been in contact with Magnus and he has nothing but good words about you! Maybe in the future we will cross paths in your later game developments :D!

    As for now I just wanted to extend my thanks to you for being so passionate about your craft, and I look forward to playing VVVVVV.

    Chris.

  24. […] game creator Terry Cavanagh is the kind of person that I wish I was. He’s made a splendid handful of games, every one of […]

  25. […] Made by Terry Cavanagh […]

  26. […] – now online: Terry Cavanagh, an Irish man from Monaghan has released VVVVVV: a retro, classic style, Atary color scheme, NES […]

  27. karpa on January 24th, 2010

    Terry, you’re really GREAT. And your games are GREAT. GREAT TERRY.

  28. Bond on January 26th, 2010

    Terry, the use of the retro aesthetic in “Don’t Look Back” seemed to me to have a double meaning… the story seems to say in looking back we kill a part of ourselves. I know MANY bitter old 30-something gamers like me who pine for the “good old games” and the pleasure games used to give us when we were young. Is our nostalgia some sort of indication of the bitterness many of us feel that the happiness of childhood is no longer there? Am I reading to much into this? Or is it a simple design choice to go early 8-bit?

  29. […] Terry Cavanagh did the great Jump’n'Run VVVVVV. I’ve also check on other blog many comments and also find that the great programmer Markus Persson aka « Notch » re-programmed a Java 4k version names VVVV. […]

  30. unknown on February 4th, 2010

    How do i play dont look back 2 can you show me how
    please reply : }

  31. VVVVVVirtuoso | Angry Yag on February 6th, 2010

    […] the time-honoured medium of 2D puzzle/platforming. This is the latest from distractionware (aka Terry Cavanagh), and indeed you might call it his first ‘proper’ game in the sense that it’s […]

  32. Alicia on March 29th, 2010

    Yet another round of applause for Don’t Look Back. I’ve played several haunting/sad flash games, but in the case of yours, I’m amazed at how the very minimal elements you use manage to be so evocative. A lesser game might have incorporated more text, for example. Seriously, awesome work.

  33. stephen e-w on April 13th, 2010

    Hi Terry, I seen you played Soundless Mountain II, I was looking it up and saw your post. Going to give it a try myself.

  34. […] sådär blev antigravitationsspelet VVVVVV det stora indiehoppet för 2010. Att spelets utvecklare, Terry Cavanagh, ligger bakom både Judith och Don’t look Back kan vara en anledning varför. Och med […]

  35. stringfilter» Going Forward on November 5th, 2010

    […] Terry Cavanagh? VVVVVV? and other fun stuff? Try out Going Forward. […]

  36. […] have claimed to be the smallest legible font, but I have to say that this 5×1 pixel font by Terry Cavanagh in 2008 is the undisputed king. It cleverly uses the way that LCD displays display pixel color with […]

  37. stringfilter – Going Forward on January 2nd, 2011

    […] Terry Cavanagh? VVVVVV? and other fun stuff? Try out Going Forward. For all you business people. […]

  38. […] del titolo.Non mi sembra quindi esagerato affermare che parte del successo dell’opera di Terry Cavanagh sia anche merito di Magnus “SoulEye” Pålsson, compositore della soundtrack, il quale, […]

  39. […] over a year ago, Magnus “SoulEye” Pålsson wrote the music for Terry Cavanagh‘s platforming puzzle game VVVVVV, which appeared on the soundtrack album […]

  40. Jonah on April 27th, 2011

    i love all of your previous games and i’m seriously looking forward to seeing your no quarter game develop. I look up to you.

  41. SirBryghtside on April 28th, 2011

    Thanks for all the awesome games, man! I’m a total fanboy, and not ashamed at all :D

  42. Demid Tishin on May 11th, 2011

    Hallo Terry! Thank you for VVVVVV – it’s a wonderful game! I can localize it into Russian and spread a word about the game :) Please send me a word at dtishin@gmail.com if you’re interested.
    Thanks again :)

  43. […] könnte Super Meat Boy wohl aussehen, wenn das Spiel von Terry Cavanagh entwickelt wwwurden wäre? Hm? Keine Ahnung? So. Die Interpretation von Terry Cavanagh ist eher […]

  44. Stephen on September 2nd, 2011

    Hi Terry, left you an email, not sure if you got it! All the best :)

    PS: A got a nice surprise, a friend of a friend posted about this game called “Hero’s quest”. Small world eh?

  45. VVVVVV | Game Playlist on September 30th, 2011

    […] est planté. Sous couvert d’un jeu au gameplay simple, on se rend compte que le créateur, Terry Cavanagh, a mis en place un jeu laissant la liberté au joueur de choisir son parcours. Certes, le début du […]

  46. Eli on October 19th, 2011

    I LOVE VVVVVV. It is amazing. Greatest soundtrack, and a game that is actually not too easy. Thank you. P.S. Great idea to put it on the Mac App Store. I was unsure if I should get it, but I had some extra money in my account anyways. Best $5 I’ve ever spent.

  47. Anonymous on November 28th, 2011

    Awsome!!!! DLB

  48. twipley on November 29th, 2011

    I have stumbled upon some of your games. I have not played them yet, but I plan to do so. It seems to be that some of the games you have developed are showing the rebirth of the gameplay that has so long ago been lost in the annals of video gaming.

    I mean, to me games stop being interesting long ago. It all began with Super Mario Bros. in 1985, but it stopped so long ago. In terms of gameplay. I mean, the last games that interested me in this respect are Elasto Mania and Kuru Kuru Kururin. Everything after that simply did not interest me.

    Along the same lines than the first poster, I really hope more games along these lines will get developed in the future.

  49. […] works, PPPPPP–the OST for VVVVVV, an interesting indie hardcore-retro 2D platformer from Terry Cavanagh WELL worthy of your time. PPPPPPixels […]

  50. […] dat niet eindigt als tragedie”, kwam ik het spel Pathways tegen. Het spel is gemaakt door Terry Cavanagh, die vooral bekend is van VVVVV. Hij is ook bekend als iemand die op originele wijze verhalen […]

  51. Ryan Carson on December 16th, 2011

    Just wanted to say that VVVVVV Is awesome! Bought it last year on steam and still come back to it every now and then. Bought the Soundtrack recently and it definately helps me keep my sanity :)

  52. […] Wikipedia, my beloved Backloggery and this very WordPress, Terry Cavanagh joined the massive blackout protest. The guy is one of my favorite indie developers and tip of the […]

  53. Vladimir on February 14th, 2012

    Hi Terri, your vvvvv, is great game, are you going to release it on ipad? It would be great!

  54. otakuman on March 9th, 2012

    Dear Terri:

    I purchased VVVVVV a few months ago, and I haven’t stopped loving it.

    Can I make a feature request?

    The super gravitron is in great need of having achievement stats.

    Like having an average, minimum and max survival time for the session, for the day, month and for all-time.

    This way we can compare stats online with other users.

    Thanks!

  55. pablo on April 5th, 2012

    thanks! I’ve just completed Don’t look back…it was awesome.

  56. […] Look Back est un jeu de Terry Cavanagh (VVVVVV pour ne parler que du plus connu) développé en 2009. C’est une reprise, en jeu de […]

  57. Mo on May 2nd, 2012

    Got VVVVVV through humble bundle, and loved it. I think maybe it’s the only humble bundle game I played to conclusion? One of the review quotes on the wikipedia article says there’s no filler material in it. That’s the perfect thing to say about it! Every screen was compelling, and the story and art so lovely :)

    And twice through Veni Vidi Vici… Jesus… But the sense of satisfaction at the end was so worth it :)

    Just went looking into more and found Don’t Look Back… More fantastic work! Thanks!

  58. bezeo on June 18th, 2012

    You are Linus Torvalds #2!! LOL

  59. […] of its cohesion to the fact that it was essentially made entirely by the one man wrecking crew of Terry Cavanagh. That’s a fact worth mentioning because as video games become more mainstream as a medium […]

  60. […] wonderful games, can be mistaken for both abstract art and self-inflicted punishment. The creator, Terry Cavanagh, is already lauded for his vexing side-scrolling action game VVVVVV, which more or less made him […]

  61. […] wonderful games, can be mistaken for both abstract art and self-inflicted punishment. The creator, Terry Cavanagh, is already lauded for his vexing side-scrolling action game VVVVVV, which more or less made him […]

  62. Syed on September 20th, 2012

    Just downloaded Super Hexagon and it is amazing. Incredibly addictive gameplay and fantastic music.

    Keep up the great work.

  63. […] is half the fun. I found it through Gizmodo and was delighted after searching to find out that the developer [Terry Cavanagh] is from Monaghan and the music is from Northern Ireland-born Chipzel. I’ve […]

  64. […] creador de Super Hexagon, Terry Cavanagh demostrando cómo es que se […]

  65. Shasharala on November 27th, 2012

    Ahh, havn’t checked back here in a while. Magnificent.
    Great to see this page updated.

  66. […] Windmill is proud to present Super Hexagon for Android, the award winning minimal action game by Terry Cavanagh, with music by […]

  67. Charles Fairchild on February 11th, 2013

    Just stopping by to tell you how much I enjoy Super Hexagon! Yeah I suck at it, but it’s so much fun!

  68. […] Terry Cavanagh is an Irish game developer living in Cambridge, England. His citationless entry on The Independent Games Wiki describes him as “bisexual on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Wikipedia.” He develops his games as distractionware, his moniker as an independent studio and developer. Since he helps run a freeware website, FreeIndieGam.es, it’s not surprising to find that he makes many of his games available for free on his website. Cavanagh has made a splash with a few of his games, mainly VVVVVV, At a Distance, and Super Hexagon. I am going to talk about a few of my personal favorites: VVVVVV, Don’t Look Back, and Pathways. […]

  69. […] Open Hexagon de Vee Software est un jeu assez récent, mais même au cours de sa jeune existence, il a déjà réussi à susciter toute une série de controverse, la question étant qu’Open Hexagon n’est rien d’autre qu’un clone libre d’un jeu populaire sur iOS / Android, Super Hexagon, créé par le tout aussi populaire développeur indépendant Terry Cavanagh. […]

  70. Daniel Belet on March 15th, 2013

    Hi Terry,

    I recently created some super hexagon art work, all from scratch and you can have a look here. http://society6.com/WeekdayWolves/Super-Hexagon_Print

  71. Ivan on April 13th, 2013

    Terry, we want more little games from you!

  72. Josh Johnson on May 6th, 2013

    Hi Terry, just wanted to drop by and say I just played through Don’t Look Back on Android and thought it was a really great game (I posted a review on my website if you’re interested: http://www.joshjohnson.edutechhosting.co.uk/blog/review-dont-look-back/)

    Keep up the good work!

    Josh

  73. Giovanni Solimeno on May 19th, 2013

    Just playing Don’t Look Back on Android, and it is a really immersive.
    One thing: On Galaxy Note buttons are really little.

    Giovanni

  74. songster on June 6th, 2013

    I just beat Don’t Look Back. That was a nice game!

  75. Carlo Arnaboldi on June 18th, 2013

    There are games, and there is art: I just wanted to remark that Super Hexagon and a Piano Sonata from Beethoven are made of the same substance. In the era of lame AAA games…this is a miracle.

  76. Denise Desu on June 25th, 2013

    Hi Terry! I wanted to take a moment to say ‘Thank you’ for your awesome work on Super Hexagon. It’s an amazing game and, even though I can’t complete it yet, I play every single day to beat my previous scores. Hope to play more games from you!

  77. […] Cavanagh mit seinem Ein-Mann-Entwickler-Studio “disctractionware” zunächst Bedenken zum Entwickeln für die OUYA hatte ist es jetzt offiziell: Die beiden […]

  78. FromRussiaWithLove on July 30th, 2013

    Hello, Terry.

    I used to play a lot of games like Half-life, NFS, Sims, and so on. Then I played your game “Don’t look back”. It was a real shock! I realized that there was a completely-different-Universe near us, the games from another dimension. Something like the European arthouse cinema against Hollywood production. I want to say thank you so much for your little masterpieces!

  79. Aaron on September 14th, 2013

    I have beaten super hexagon and seen the ending …. The only thing I have to say is wow what amazing work! I played this game addictively for about two and a half weeks and my highscore on hyper hexagonest is 88 secs. As my first game I’ve played from you I’m impressed. Great job!

  80. Suppir on October 12th, 2013

    I like clear, minimalistic design and great ideas in each Terry’s work.

  81. » VVVVVV (2010) on November 22nd, 2013

    […] of its cohesion to the fact that it was essentially made entirely by the one man wrecking crew of Terry Cavanagh. That’s a fact worth mentioning because as video games become more mainstream as a medium […]

  82. dj_ouf on December 22nd, 2013

    Congratulations Terry for your wonderfull poetics games ! I especially liked Don’t look back and going to play Naya’s Quest :D

    Keep up the good work

  83. Terry Cavanagh | Digital Blare on January 8th, 2014

    […] Cavanagh on making fewer, more ambitious games About Me Twitter […]

  84. […] as a video games developer (products such as Super Hexagon and VVVVV). The company he founded is Distractionware. He was home in Tydavnet for Christmas and the New […]

  85. cathriona on January 9th, 2014

    can I just ask you what course you would recommend for someone who wants to develop games?

  86. […] Terry Cavanagh, desenvolvedor de VVVVVV e Super Hexagon, ambos jogos desafiadores, respondeu a iniciativa com Maverick Bird. […]

  87. SteveTheGuy on April 2nd, 2014

    Please try my game about AVGN coded with puzzlescript HTML5:http://www.puzzlescript.net/play.html?p=9938787

  88. […] liebster Spieleentwickler Terry Cavanagh (Super Hexagon! Dude!) hat am Wochenende ein massives Round-Up zu seinem Indie-Klassiker VVVVVV auf […]

  89. Kevin Plante-Germain on June 17th, 2014

    Hello Terry,

    I’ve just finished VVVVVV. Its a real piece of art, keep on the good work!

    Peace!

    – Kev from Canada

  90. Aesthetics Training on November 11th, 2014

    Aesthetics Training

    distractionware » About Me

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