Taking your first step into a new world is always an eye opening thing. Many times you’ll want to explore as much as you can and search far and wide to find just about anything and everything. Woven is just that. You follow Stuffy and glitch through A wide open world and discover the mysteries of what happened to this wonderful woolen world. The Media managers recently got a chance to interview AlterEgo games over Woven and their dev team and they took the interview questions carefully into two hands and weaved each response into something incredible.
How did Alterego Games meet and decide you create a game studio?
“Dominic and Matthijs lived in the same student-housing. There, late game nights with the other people that lived in the house inspired a shared love for games. They started thinking up alternative versions of card games they loved, in the end resulting in Intrigo: Mutineers of the Seven seas, a cardgame still available in the Netherlands. When Dominic was asked to create an app, they joined forces and started Alterego Games. The studio that combines creating games and creating technologies. They met with Vincent two years later, as a freelancer. But they worked so well together that Vincent soon became part of the company.”
Can you tell us more about Woven for the people who haven’t played it yet?
“Woven is a relaxed story-telling adventure game, where there is more then meets the eye. Solve timing puzzles, find hidden collectibles and discover why a world of wool would be threatened by metal insects.”
How did the project for Woven get started?
“It was a concept Vincent had worked on ten years ago called ‘Stuffies’. At the time concepted as a MMORPG-type game, but never built beyond a (great looking) visual prototype of Stuffy walking around in a woollen environment.
When Dominic and Matthijs saw this video, they fell in love with the main character, and decided that a game starring this cute creature HAD to be made. But we also wanted to add elements of our own: The threat of a hidden metal invasion and a narrated story that rhymes.”
The game is based around exploration. How did you manage to fill the world so nothing feels empty?
“The perception of empty is largely in the players mind. Some say the world of Woven actually feels a bit empty, others say it is brimming with hidden details. Both are true, after all; why don’t we see other creatures like Stuffy in the first level of the game? Whereto did they journey, and why?
Filling a world with details, without overcrowding it is an art unto itself. For instance, clumping together details leaves emptier areas that then become the crossroads for players to make the choice of where to go.”
How hard was it to implement the different customization and abilities to the main character?
“Extremely hard, in a technical sense. There are over 20 Stuffy models, each with 5 bodyparts, that each have three colours. A separate shader (way to give characters colour) was written so you could customize Stuffy on the spot and adjust every bit of him. Usually colours of characters (the texture) is pre-baked.
Then there was animation; each bodypart is animated separately. So when mix and match different bodyparts together, an elephants arm will move differently then a crocodiles arm.”
Do you plan on adding on adding workshop support to Woven?
“At the moment we haven’t planned this.”
Do you plan on adding any DLC to Woven?
“No. Woven tells a linear story and we are quite happy with the ending. Gameplay beyond that point wouldn’t feel right. A DLC could of course add extra colours, but with the 150 it already has, I think players will be fine for now 😉”
Do you have any projects you may want to work on in the future?
“Certainly we have projects we want to work on! We’re a game studio that wants to continuously tell great stories. In fact. We’ve already started on our next title, which is also an adventure game, but tells quite a different tale, one dark and flooded with paranoia. We’re looking forward to announcing the title somewhere in the first half of 2020.”
What is Alterego Games’s dream as a game developing studio?
“Currently we’re a team of 5. That means that with every project we undertake, we have to be 100% efficient and a lot of good ideas simply can’t get implemented into the game, because there’s not enough hands to make it happen. To tell stories in a cinematic way that is fun and interactive, we want to grow our experience with each game we make, become better developers and designers, and grow into a team of 15-20 people with lots of expertise and great artistry on board.”
What is one thing you’d like to tell Game Developers who are just starting out in the industries whether it’s a small team or a solo developer?
“I would say; focus on what you do best, and always plan for the long term. What are you going to do after this project? Businesses that don’t have an answer to that question terrify me.
That’s two things isn’t it? Darn it…”
Well that concluded the interview! If you’d like to check out Woven and or AlterEgo and their social media please check out the links before!