With The Room Two [official site] released on PC today, we grabbed the chance to speak to developers Fireproof about how they succeeded in a tough mobile market, and then succeeded yet again when converting those games to PC.
RPS Feature Working like clockwork
RPS Feature The Epic outdoors
In the furnished upper floor of the Epic booth at this year’s GDC I sat down with company founder, Tim Sweeney. We were there – indoors and down a flight of stairs – to discuss the great outdoors. I wanted to know more about the challenges of producing outdoor environments using a game engine, how Epic themselves approach the challenge, and what the big areas of research will be next. But to look at something concrete we started with the Unreal Engine demo whose cinematic follows a boy as he chases his kite through an area modelled on Scottish terrain but populated with flora scanned from New Zealand…
RPS Feature The Benefits of F2P
Despite a growing wealth of awesome free-to-play games, the term itself remains a dirty word for a lot of people. But free-to-play isn’t as black and white as some would like to believe. We’ve all paid top dollar for a game only to feel disappointed, and likewise, free-to-play doesn’t have to mean being drip-fed bits of game in between rigorous bouts of patting you down to find where your wallet is. And that’s exactly what Keith Lee and Emil Anticevic, head honchos over at Counterplay Games, the developer of Duelyst [official site], have been trying to prove.
RPS Feature Virtually building
While at GDC I had the opportunity to sit down with Colin Northway, one of the creators behind the excellent VR remake (and the 2D original) Fantastic Contraption [official site]. We talked about how VR worked differently compared with traditional game design or, to put it less mundanely, why a walking cat dispensing sticks is better than a menu system. While at GDC Adam really loved Fantastic Contraption and, I think Graham was having a similarly good time with it back in the UK. We also made it one of our Games Of The Half Year so it’s high time we put this interview up!
RPS Feature Becoming a fan
While in China for the League of Legends [official site] Mid-Season Invitational, I spent some time talking to Whalen Rozelle. He’s Director of Esports over at Riot and a lot of the conversation ended up being about creating connections. That’s a focal point for League of Legends at the moment – finding ways to forge personal connections between the professional scene and the viewers and the non-professional players.
Before I get into the Q&A itself I just wanted to say that I think this is one of those peculiar by-products of the way intellectual property and esports collide. There are multiple MOBAs which involve a lane-pushing element but they’re divided up into separate sports because they have different characters, engines, map elements, balancing and so on. Their complexity and their proprietary nature means you need to buy into a particular company to participate, either investing money or time or both.
RPS Feature How tiny worlds were made
The Flame in the Flood’s [official site] lead designer, Forrest Dowling seemed like an ideal candidate for my ongoing investigation of outdoor worlds in videogames both because of his name and because of his survival game. The Flame And The Flood sees you play as Scout, a woman trying to stay alive as she navigates her way along a fiercely flowing river. It manages to be a strangely cosy version of the outdoors with a wonderful, evocative colour palette and soundtrack. Here’s how it works:
RPS Feature Making the lore
With Blizzard’s first-person shooter, Overwatch’s [official site] launch a few hours away, senior game designer, Michael Chu, has come to London as part of the game’s global release activities. I assume it’s been a very similar experience for him to playing the game’s UK map, King’s Row, although he tells me there have been “fewer hover-buses”. I was about to explain about the joys of “driving” the Docklands Light Railway but thought I should probably ask Overwatch-related questions instead. Maybe he will drive the DLR tomorrow.