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Nuggets Exclusive Interview

by onJanuary 19, 2016
 

Hello Everyone today we bring you an Exclusive interview from our friends at Magigue Productions

1.Hello Magique Productions can you introduce yourself and give us a little background about your team?

Hi, Nintendo Nuggets. Thank you for allowing me to do this interview and talk about Asteroid Challenge. Magique Productions is a small independent company with experience in publishing role-playing games and producing independent films/TV shows. We’ve also dabbled in computer game development in the past, but have not yet released our first game title.

Our team on Asteroid Challenge consists of just myself, Tommy Scott, a single freelance artist, Santiago Iborra, and some dedicated playtesters. I’m a professional programmer and have been making a living at programming for 25+ years now. My programming experience includes graphics and game engine design as well as game development. Santiago is a fantastic freelance artist with experience in multiple genres and has done contract work for Magique Productions for over 12 years. Santiago’s work on Asteroid Challenge includes the logo design and user interface graphics.

Asteroid Challenge is being developed using the kitbash method. For those not familiar with the term kitbashing, it specifically refers to taking lots of separate commercially available plastic model kits and putting various pieces together to make a new model. This is a technique used extensively in the original Star Wars movies to build the various star ships. Applying this technique to game development, it simply means taking various commercially available components and putting them together in new and interesting ways. I primarily get my content from the Unity Asset Store, including sound effects, music, and even some code.

2. What is your game Asteroid Challenge about?

Asteroid Challenge draws inspiration from classic arcade games such as asteroids, space duel, centipede, and others. The basic concept is to shoot your way through waves of asteroids, enemy ships, and other obstacles while collecting power-ups, special weapons, and achievements. The main features of the game are summarized below.

Features

  • 1080p 60fps HD game play
  • 3 retro graphics modes
  • single player, single ship mode
  • single player, linked ship mode
  • two player, individual ship mode
  • two player, linked ship mode
  • 70 levels consisting of 7 sectors of 10 levels each
  • Boss battles on the final level of each sector
  • Power-ups and Special Weapons

Some example power-ups and special weapons include*:

  • Invincibility
  • Shield Energy
  • Warp
  • Sonic Wave
  • Laser Beam
  • Two-Way Laser
  • Missile Volley

* – Note that the final features may change before the game is released.

3.What was the story behind this game and how did it became to be?

Asteroid Challenge started out as a small title that I could do a quick turnaround on and get submitted to the Nintendo eShop and sell at a low price point. The goal was to get something released that could possibly bring in enough capital to help fund our more ambitious game projects. However, the further into development I got, the more the scope and depth of the game grew. I realized that I didn’t just want to slap something quickly together and push it to sales. I wanted it to be well-done and polished and not just something you could beat in an hour. Over the past few months the game has undergone improvements in graphics quality and game play as I continue to get closer to a finished product.

As for why I chose this type of game, there are a few reasons. One of our other titles in development, Frontier Guard, is a shoot ’em up and I realized that if I made another shmup that I could borrow a lot of code and maximize the use of what I had already built. Second, I am a big fan of early arcade games. I grew up at the time that video arcades were seeing a huge explosion with games such as Space Invaders, Asteroids, Donkey Kong, Pac Man, and others. I felt that a homage to some of those games would be appealing to a lot of gamers. That’s when I decided on a sort of hybrid retro style game with elements from several classic games, but updated with new ideas and modern game play elements. In Asteroid Challenge you’ll see influences from Asteroids, Space Duel, Centipede, and other retro arcade games.

4.What do you want to accomplish with your game?

The bottom line is that I want to create a game that’s fun to play and has a lot of replay-ability. And I don’t want it to be just a solo game experience. I have fond memories of my older brother and I popping quarters into the Space Duel arcade game and coordinating our skills in linked ship mode. It was addictive and fun and added a whole dimension to the game that I had never experienced before. I’ve applied those concepts to Asteroid Challenge and provide two different 2 player modes as well as 2 distinct single player modes as well.

Beyond just creating a fun game, I am hopeful that we can use the game sales as a modest funding source to help offset some of the costs of our other projects such as Scions of Chaos: Prologue, which we are moving into full production mode on soon.

5. Most companies have turned against the Wii U and decided not to support it, How did you decide to choose the Wii U to be one of the consoles?

I’ve been a huge Nintendo fan since the NES debuted in the early 80s. At the time, I was programming my own home games on the Commodore 64 and dreaming of the possibility of creating games for Nintendo. I even started making a demo disk that I wanted to send to Nintendo in the hopes of securing a job with them, but life in general prevented the completion of the demo or making any other attempts at that dream. For a bit of trivia, I still have a Commodore 64 and I still have all my old disks, including the demo disk I was building for Nintendo.

When I got a Wii U for my daughters for Christmas 2013, I was once again hooked on Nintendo and dreams of creating Nintendo console games came to mind. I did a little research and learned of the Indie developer program and how easy it was to apply for a license. I immediately set about preparing to make my pitch for a license and soon after I was accepted.

6. Will the Wii U gamepad be used? What will make your game unique?

For Asteroid Challenge, the gamepad is being used solely for off TV game play. Future games in our lineup will be using the gamepad in more interesting ways, but I don’t ever want to add a bell or whistle gamepad feature just because it’s there. It needs to make sense to do so and enhance the gaming experience in a meaningful way.

Some of the unique features of Asteroid Challenge include the linked ship mode allowing 2 players to cooperate in a challenging way, and 3 retro graphics modes that can be cycled in real-time.

7. Do you have a release date or when you hope to finish this game?

We do not have an official release date as that would require us to have submitted the game to Nintendo and have approval already. My goal is to have the game finalized and submitted by January 31st with a release within Q1 2016. That assumes a 30 day turnaround after submission as well as 30 days cushion on submission date.

8. What do you want fans mainly to look forward to about Asteroid Challenge?

An edge of your seat challenge and a pure adrenaline rush of fun. And a game that they will be talking about for years to come. Since Asteroid Challenge is primarily a successor to games such as Asteroids and Space Duel, I want it to be viewed as a worthy successor.

9. Do you want to say something to all the fans?

Thank you to all the Nintendo fans who took the time to read this interview and to check out Asteroid Challenge. I look forward to interacting with the community again in the near future. And God bless.

 

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  • Stufa

    All the nostalgia of Asteroids on 2600 come racing back. It should do, I played it a few days ago.
    And with Space Duel and Combat, those are games that can still teach the mod gamers a trick or two.