Da un bel pezzo non pubblicavo qualcosa. Mi piace farlo con una intervista esclusiva a Mi-clos studio, lo studio francese che ha realizzato Out there Omega e Out there Chronicles, due perle videoludice per Android. Eccovi l'intervista integrale che potete leggere anche su www.cinagadgets.it.
We are very proud to interview FibreTigre from Mi.Clos studio, the game company behind two of the most ‘beautiful games’ we’ve ever played on Android. The word beautiful is the only one we can think of when describing games where eveything is so lovely made that the game itself becomes more an experience than a diversion. We’re talking about Out there and Out there chronicles episode 1, two of the games published by Mi.Clos studio, the only two available from Google Play for our beloved Android systems. FibreTigre has been writing interactive fiction for 12 years and has released a couple of serious/experimental games. He has written about video games in French publications, such as Wired France and he’s the person behind the complex fictional historical background of Mi.Clos studio’s games.
Cinagadgets: We fell in love with your games at first sight. It was since the age of Bitmap Brothers and games like Xenon on Amiga that we didn’t find something so ‘made with love’. Everything is nice in your games, the plot, the graphics, the music, the controls. It seems you spent a lifetime in their development and in testing them, but your team seem pretty small. Are you the new Bitmap Brothers or can you count on many people lurking in shadows and helping you?
FibreTigre: In Mi-Clos we have a very small team of very specialized people and we intend to stay small to keep control over the quality.
When I write for Mi-Clos Studio, I try to create a never-seen before story. We try to entertain you, but there is more to that, we are ambitious. That may sound stupid, but I did not write Out There Chronicles saying « let’s write another Sci-Fi Story ». I wanted it to be the new Star Wars. I may and will probably fail at this, but we set the bar very high for ourselves.
You have to understand that with our small team, we won’t make 50 games in our lives. That means that every game counts. Every game must be the best thing we can make at the time. And every game must be a step for the next one to be better.
Cinagadgets: What amazes us about your games (all your games, not only the Android ones) is the consistent universe you developed. “Out there” is an experience with many open questions. “Out there chronicles” begins to answer to some of them. Links to the universe you imagined are everywhere in your games. Your universe is something spanning one million years of time, with some elements from the Dying Earth series by Jack Vance and from David Brins’ novels. Who did influence you most?
FibreTigre: We have written a « Out There Bible » that begins nowadays and goes to the very end of the whole universe.
We might write 100 episodes of Out There Chronicles, but we know exactly what will happen at certain key points of the timeline.
For inspiration, I like Hamilton, Heinlein, Pohl and Vinge, but I love physics and maths. Science is the best inspiration.
Cinagadgets: Can you give us a brief timeline of the already known events in your universe? (the war, the arks, the foundation of America and so on).
FibreTigre: In the near future, a Judge Architect will shut down our sun, and a war for ressources began on Earth to create Arks. As far as we know, there is 2 Arks that survived, America and Europa. They drifted 1 million years in the starts. America has conquered an eponymous moon and built a stable society. They exiled some criminals in space and those people, 10 000 years prior to the events of OTC 1, found the galactic civilizations of aliens in Space, and build in their turn a confederation spanning on many wolrlds, the capitol planet being New Virginia. When OTC-1 begins, a survivor from the Europa Ark is found. The action of Out There Omega takes place 5 billons years later. A survivor from our time tries to find Earth again. I can’t spoil the end, but the end of Out There Omega si not the end of the Out There Universe.
Cinagadgets: And what about a glimpse of future elements we still don’t know? Who or what are the gods? Is Earth really doomed forever? Where are the other arks?
FibreTigre: All of these are very good questions that will have soon their answer. I can say that the mood of Out There Omega was summarized by « Everything we do is vain », because I was depressed at the time. OTC will more be along the « Everything we do is not vain. »
Cinagadgets: You publicly stated in your youtube self interview that you’re not planning to launch an editor tool for “Out there” but by looking at the credits in “Out there chronicles” we saw the words “Fiction Engine”. Are you using a third party engine or have you developed your one? Are you planning to publish it in the near future?
FibreTigre: We would like to publish other people works thanks to this engine, but not without our guidance. So it won’t be public.
Cinagadgets: We at Cinagadgets.it believe that quality is not always associated with expensive prices and your games are of awesome quality for the price of a cappuccino. In this era where everyone launches games full of ads or free games with paytowin content, you decided to sell your games and give everything to the final user, even new game modes with new releases of your games. What do you think about the future of the gaming industry?
FibreTigre: The short term future is on mobile, that a sure thing. Everything else looks incertain..
Cinagadgets: Your games play pretty well on cheap tablets and phones. We like that. We still think that good games don’t need expensive hardware to run. Are you going to continue to develop games for everyone or are you going to release games with top specs in the future?
FibreTigre: As far as I am concerned, I prefer small games. There is so much that has not be done only using text, I prefer keep on with this instead of losing my health in making a 3d open world.
Cinagadgets: So tell us something about your future? What are your upcoming games? Are you going to publish titles for PC, iOS and Android or are you going to focus on a market segment only?
FibreTigre: I have given the full text of OTC 2 to Michael, I am still working on Sigma Theory and Antioch. We hope that our games will be published everywhere, but since we are a small team, going to a new platform means taking a risk each time.
Cinagadgets: Can you tell us something about game developing on Android? Google play allows everyone to be a publisher for about 30 dollars, forever. Quality is not common among thousands of apps and games. Do you believe Google is doing the right thing by allowing everyone to publish their efforts (sometimes their too small efforts) in the Play market? How can something good rise among the rest? The Bitmap Brothers had Konami beyond them. Did you do all by yourselves?
FibreTigre: Android is a very good market. When publishing on Android, you have to expect your game to be on pirate bay the very day on the launch, and that’s hard when you just finished a several years long game dev. But there are a lot of fair play android owners that deserve good games. Google is not behind us, but helps us sometimes. They give us a booth at Pax, for Antioch.
Cinagadgets: We hope you can give us just a glimpse of your future games, a work of art by your talented artist Benjamin Carre’ or a short moment of dramatic music by Mr. Siddharta Barnhoorn. Can you give a little present to our readers? What will happen in Out there chronicles episode 2? Will Darius find Europe?
FibreTigre: OTC is just like the Odysseus. Darius is more smart than a warrior, like Ulysses. Nyx is some kind of cyclops. They meet and fight gods and monsters. But I want it to be a inner voyage. Darius comes from a time of war, and he has to go far away from this. That are the themes developped in OTC 2. I can say that Jack at some point says « Every planet has a secret. ». So they are on this planet and try to find the secret. And they find incredible things, and each time until the very end they say « THAT is the secret ! » but there is always something greater.
Cinagadgets: We’re looking forward to hearing from you soon. Cinagadgets.it will follow your projects and we hope to be among the first in Italy to announce the next episode of Out There chronicles. Good luck Mi-Clos studio and thank you very much
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