5) MAKING OF: Who made the SP-Studio and how

Who created this website?

My name is Janina Himmen, I’m from Germany and started working on the SP-Studio back in the year 2001 as a student. I run the German South Park fanpage Planearium.de and usually often go by the nickname Zwerg-im-Bikini. I work as a freelance designer, so if you need a website or illustration feel free to contact me. In my freetime I enjoy a good movie, video- or boardgame.

In 2018 I started to work on a new SP-Studio which does not rely on Flash anymore. Since my coding skills are very limited I would not be able to do this without help. Kai Wegner is building the base for the new SP-Studio. Thank you so much, Kai!

How is the SP-Studio made?

I use a computer and a mouse :). The SP-Studio is created with the software Adobe Animate (formerly known as Adobe Flash). You can find a free trial version here). I use it to draw the single parts as vector images and for the ActionScript code to make the whole thing work.

Unfortunately Flash is dying, so I will have to create a new SP-Studio from scratch. For this new version I will continue to use Adobe Animate for the drawings, but the whole coding is done in Angular2. JetBrains WebStorm is used as an editor.

When do you update the site and how do we know about it?

I try to upload new content every couple of weeks. But it is difficult to predict when I have enough time. There are several ways to know if there are new updates:

This is the place where you can read about what’s new first. You can also subscribe to the RSS-Feed.
Follow SP_STUDIO on Twitter if you prefer to read about updates there.
If you use Facebook like theSPstudio! I write about every update there and read your comments.
You can follow thespstudio on Instagram if this is the social network of your choice.
If you want to support the development of the SP-Studio (= more updates) you can become a Patron. You will see exclusive “behind the scenes” stuff before updates go online and can vote for what you want to see next.
I don’t write about updates here but if you want to see SP-Studio related artwork you should follof my DeviantArt account sp-studio-art. I upload edited drawings related to the SP-Studio content.


Is this game suitable for children?

Sometimes parents or teacher ask if the SP-Studio is made for kids. I know many children play with it and it helps them to be creative, but when I created it this was not my main target group. The art style is based on the TV show “South Park”, a satirical cartoon for adults. The characters look cute and I do not think this game will harm children, but there are some weapons and drugs as items. A dildo hat might be the most inappropriate thing you can find here. But apart from this I cannot think of anything that might be a problem. There are no hidden costs. But please watch your kids if they want to use the forum where you can talk to other fans and share your pictures. Though this place is under moderation I do not think little kids should use any online community on their own.

Why no other languages?

Unfortunately I do not have the time to update more than one version of the SP-Studio. In the beginning there was a German version as well, but I deleted it because more visitors understand English. That’s why there are no versions for different languages. But I designed the SP-Studio in a way so you can use it without reading. And if you click on the “?” symbol there is a help text in different languages.

What will NEVER be included in the SP-Studio? Why?

You can send me requests for new items, because I always try to improve this website and I am happy about feedback. Don’t be shy :). But you can stop asking for the following things, because I will never include them:

  • NO different body shapes
    Please stop asking about adults and fat kids. It should be obvious why there are no different shapes, but I will explain it again to make sure everybody can read it:
    If there is a second body shape you cannot combine the old items with it. First problem: From now on you cannot combine everything = less possibilities = less fun. Another big problem is the time. I would have to draw EVERY single item again for the new shape. This is a very stupid and time consuming work. Even if I would like to do this it would mean: no updates for at least a year. It makes more sense to use my free time for interesting NEW items for the existing SP-Studio. There are character creators out there which offer different body shapes, but of course this always means less items for each shape. Simple maths ;). This is not the way I want to go, because I prefer to offer you as many items as possible which can be combined freely.
  • NO more band shirts / sport trikots
    There are SO many bands and clubs out there, it is impossible to satisfy every fan. Sorry, but this is too special. And the logos are protected by copyright, so I will not do it anymore to avoid legal trouble.
  • NO famous brands or logotypes
    Same problem. I do not want to get in trouble because of the copyrights, so I try to avoid them.
  • NO offline version
    The SP-Studio is meant to be an online game which stays on my website only. I think this is fair, because I do not charge money from you. Your visit on my website is my only reward for years of work, because I enjoy your feedback. If this was gone I would stop working here, because I had nor reason to continue. Additionally an offline version could not be updated as easily as this website, so this is the best for everybody.
  • NO sound / animation
    The SP-Studio is meant to be a picture maker and will stay this way. Adding sounds and animations would steal a lot of time I prefer to use for drawing useful new items. Sorry, but if you search for a movie maker you will have to look elsewhere. And another problem is: I am no coder and work alone. It would not be possible for me to code this.