Developer Interview: Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers (Wii U)
On Page 1, Rock Pocket Games revealed to Aussie-Gamer how Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers was imagined, and how the multi-dimensional puzzles will work.
Now, we chat a little more about the game and how it will be delivered into the hands of gamers, what’s in store for the new GDC demo and more! Read on!
Aussie-Gamer – From what we’ve seen of the game so far, it certainly looks beautiful. What inspired the art style?
Natascha Röösli – There was no outside inspiration.
The idea was always to make the graphics approachable for a wide audience and what you see is the result. The current graphics are a co-operation between the concepts by Davide and the 3D interpretation by Henning, our art Director, with initial design and constant input from Ivan (and sometimes the whole team, which is not always a good thing! ).
It’s a work in progress but we have folders and folders of beautiful concept art by Davide to work with. It’s also important that all the designs and the art style are not just random. There are design decisions and story linked to art assets. Background story and lore also really help to flesh out the design and look of the game which is important to be consistent throughout.
For example, if you stumble across some artifacts by a race you encountered earlier, you should of course be able to recognize where they belong in terms of design. The same is true for architecture.
Aussie-Gamer – Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers is heading to Game Developer Conference this year, what can we expect to see at the conference? Is there any one specific aspect of the game you’re hoping to show off at the show?
Natascha Röösli – We are fully concentrating on having a hands-on Demo for GDC ready. Attendees will be able to try additional aspects of the game we have not shown before.
Most journalists or interested gamers think that Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers is a platformer foremost, which is actually quite understandable if you only saw the dimension switching teaser we’ve shown (below), or the footage from GDC 2012. Truth is though, it’s actually an adventure and exploration game as much as it is a platform puzzler and we are trying to get more of those aspects into the game now. We are not sure yet if we can show some of the dialog and quest parts, though.
People coming by and checking out the demo will be able to try their hands on QTEs (Quick Time Events), a proper boss fight, platforming and an actual puzzle level. All of these are part of the storyline you can play parts of at GDC.
You’ll also be able to meet the Wabas, explore their village and try to gain the trust of the little critters. At this point it’s important for us to prove that we can design interesting puzzles as well as create a game that, as a whole, is fun and offers something for everyone. As mentioned, we hope that it will be interesting for the core gamer as well as for the more casual gamer.
We are of course really excited to see how testers will react to the demo and will take all the input back home for adjustments.
Aussie-Gamer – When can the public expect to get some hands on time with Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers? When’s the expected launch date, and are you targeting a worldwide release?
Natascha Röösli – Visitors will be able to try Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers during GDC, so make sure to come-by should you be in the area! At this point we are not sure if we are going to make a public demo available just yet. It’s something we are considering for after GDC.
In terms of launch date, I wish I could give one but it all comes down to if and how fast we can find a partner to help us carry the rest of the development cost. As you mentioned, it’s an incredibly ambitious project for a no-name indie like us and we definitely need help in that regard. Release location depends on a possible partner and if we have restrictions of any kind. Obviously we would love to make sure it’s available to everyone who is interested in the game!
Aussie-Gamer – Finally, do the developers have a message for their new Australian fans, our readers?
Natascha Röösli – We love you guys! Seriously, games, like movies, are nothing without their communities and people who are passionate about them. Obviously, we want to make a game we would like to play (haven’t you heard that one before?) but of course we also make it for you and we really appreciate any kind of support and feedback.
Most importantly, if you think there is demand for a game like Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers let us know, please! We hate to think we are the only ones passionate about 3D Adventure/Platformers and with all the push to mobile and pure action games we almost start to believe we are a dying breed.
Should you be around for GDC, come by and let us know what you think.
Last but not least a question from our side: Do you guys really use the term “Useless as an ashtray on a motorbike”?
There you have it folks; if you want to support this truly unique video game and see it released, why not send a message to the development team in the comments below — they’ll be keeping an eye out for your support!
Aussie-Gamer will continue to follow the development of Oliver & Spike: Dimension Jumpers as it continues, so stay tuned! Otherwise, you can keep tabs on the game on the official website.