Category Archives: Interviews

Versus Evil is a publisher perhaps most known for helping to bring Banner Saga [$4.99] to the world, but the self-styled indie publisher – and it's a small outfit, comprised of three principals right now, including general manager Steve Escalante – is looking to make a bigger footprint beyond that. They've had a presence at gaming shows such as the PAX events. And the studio has multiple titles from multiple developers in the works, with mobile a core part of their strategy. Guild of Dungeoneering [$3.99] has just released on mobile, Like a Boss is in soft launch, Let Them Come is planned as a cross-platform release, and oh yeah, Banner Saga 2 exists. I spoke recently with Steve Escalante to discuss Guild of Dungeoneering's mobile release, and how a publisher like Versus Evil can find a way to operate on mobile with not just free-to-play games, but also in the risky premium gaming market...

Recently, I was invited to come and visit the headquarters of BlazeGames, the developer behind the new game Battle Champs [Free]. Along with a few other members of the media, I was given a brief tour of their offices located in Shibuya, Tokyo, and got to see a short presentation about Battle Champs. The highlight of the trip was a chance to ask some questions about the game to a few of the team members. Producer Yuji Okada, art director Akihiko Yoshida, and assistant art director Satoshi Matsura all took some time out of their busy schedules to tell me about the new game. As the interview ended up being quite lengthy, I've broken it up into two different parts. Make sure you read the first part of the interview before going ahead...




An Interview With Akihiko Yoshida, Yuji Okada, and Satoshi Matsura from the 'Battle Champs' Team

Recently, I was invited to come and visit the headquarters of BlazeGames, the developer behind the new game Battle Champs [Free]. Along with a few other members of the media, I was given a brief tour of their offices located in Shibuya, Tokyo, and got to see a short presentation about Battle Champs. The highlight of the trip was a chance to ask some questions about the game to a few of the team members. Producer Yuji Okada, art director Akihiko Yoshida, and assistant art director Satoshi Matsura all took some time out of their busy schedules to tell me about the new game. As the interview ended up being quite lengthy, I'm breaking it up into two different articles. Check in tomorrow for the second part...

Hello, friends. Today, I've got something a little out of the ordinary for you. A few months ago in the RPG Reload feature we covered Heroes Of Steel Elite [$3.99], an RPG from developers Trese Brothers. As usual, I reached out to them for some background information, but for a variety of reasons, we couldn't connect for an interview until after the Christmas holidays. I promised in that article that I would print the interview separately later on, and here we are, living and breathing in the world of "later on"...

The fine folks at Venan Entertainment have been on the App Store for a long time, known first for Space Miner [$3.99], and now returning to the App Store with Space Miner Wars [Free], which recently released. I had a conversation with Brandon Curiel of Venan to chat about what they were trying to do with the game, the challenges of selling a free-to-play to a skeptical audience, and their thoughts on recent game update debacles...

SomaSim's 1849 [$4.99 (HD)] saw a new, updated version this week with 1849: Gold Edition [$5.99 (HD)], which compiles the Nevada Silver expansion and a new post-Gold-Rush expansion in 1865. The original 1849 gets the Gold Edition content for free, but this Gold Edition is a new, all-in-one release with all DLC integrated in the game already. I spoke to Matthew Viglione about 1849 Gold Edition, and to talk about some details regarding their next game, Project Highrise...

The new PikPok and Adult Swim Games title Monsters Ate My Metropolis [Free] is certainly not what you might have expected when you heard a new Monsters Ate My Condo [$0.99] game was in the works, but it makes sense – with that wacky and well-defined universe, why not explore it in other ways? The studios deciding to go with a competitive card game? That was an interesting move. I chatted with Chris Viggers, product manager at PikPok, about the game...

Down the Mountain [Free] is the latest game from Umbrella, who also developed Boom Dots [Free]. If you played Boom Dots, you might have found it surprisingly compelling. It's such a simple game, and one that is kind of hard to convey the fun of. But it nails the game feel, making every hit feel satisfying, and it's perfect for one-handed, on-the-go play. And Zig Zag Boom [Free], worked on by Sven Magnus of Umbrella, is similar in that it's more fun than it should be. Now, Down the Mountain continues that tradition, applying a bit of a Crossy Road [Free] spin on Q-Bert, with plenty of their own touches. I chatted with Sven Magnus of Umbrella, asking him a few questions about Down the Mountain, how it was made, and about the mobile gaming market as general...

SEGA's latest game featuring their iconic blue mascot, Sonic Runners [Free], finally came out of soft launch late last week, and if the successes of previous Sonic games on iOS are anything to go by, they've probably got a hit on their hands. Opinions have been mixed to say the least, and our upcoming review will likely reflect that, but if nothing else it's pretty interesting to see a mobile-only game coming from the development team that built the series. In the lead up to the worldwide launch, SEGA kindly gave us the opportunity to ask the head of Sonic Team, Takashi Iizuka, a few questions about the game...

The trend you see lately in mobile gaming is for developers to often try smaller projects. They're less risk, and can still pay off big, especially if you get something that gets a fraction of the downloads of a Crossy Road [Free]. Big games are a risk. Big free-to-play games are a massive risk: if you don't have the resources of a studio backed by investors, you may struggle to even be in the same ballpark as the studios below King and Supercell. So, it seems initially like it's a major folly for Fabulapps to try and compete with the big kahunas of free-to-play with their upcoming game Korrigans: Kingdom Wars, currently in soft launch. But they think they just might have what it takes...

'Forgotten Memories: Alternate Realities' Preview: As Creepy As You Want It To Be

If anticipation for a game can be measured by the conversation it generates, then over six thousand comments in a Touch Arcade forum thread would suggest that Canadian developers Psychoz Interactive have got a sure-fire hit on their hands with Forgotten Memories. We got our hands on an advance copy of the survival horror game, and chatted with the game's director Georges Paz...

Last week, I had the opportunity to talk to the producers behind DeNA and Square Enix's new social RPG, Final Fantasy: Record Keeper [Free]. We had a fairly lengthy discussion about the game itself and Final Fantasy in general. So lengthy, in fact, that we decided to run the interview in two parts. Yesterday, we covered introductions, the genesis of the game, region differences, and a few other gameplay aspects. Today's portion gets more into hardcore Final Fantasy discussion, which was a lot of fun. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did...

We've been waiting for a while, but the time that we can start talking about the English version of DeNA and Square Enix's new social RPG, Final Fantasy: Record Keeper. Last week, I had the opportunity to visit Square Enix's offices in Shinjuku to have a chat with the producers of the game. Of course, I'm coming from the angle of having played the Japanese version quite a bit, so I was particularly interested in any changes they might have made, but we covered a pretty wide range of topics. It was immediately clear to me that all three of the people I talked to are huge fans of Final Fantasy and had a lot of passion that they put into Record Keeper. I think in reading their responses, you'll be able to see that yourself. Since this ended up being a pretty long talk, we're going to run half of the interview today and the other half tomorrow. Today's part focuses on introductions, the genesis of the game, localization changes, and some elements of the gameplay...

Many game-makers dream the dream of overnight success, but few get to live the reality. For three-man French team 1Button, the dream came true, as their new title Mr Jump rocketed up the App Store charts, shifting more than a million copies every day...

It's an exciting time for Martin Magni, developer of Odd Bot Out [$3.99]. Just two months after his game's release on iOS and Android, the cutsey sci-fi puzzler has sold enough copies to cover its development costs, and has made Martin a darling of the indie scene...

TouchTone [$2.99] is Mikengreg's first game since Gasketball [Free (HD)], the fun physics/basketball game that unfortunately was a financial flop. Between other projects, the two kept tinkering away on the concept that eventually became TouchTone, a puzzle game that integrates themes of surveillance and spying, inspired by world events. I spoke with Mike Boxleiter and Greg Wohlwend about the game, and found out how the game took 2 days to make its core gameplay, but over 2 years for the whole politically-charged package to come together...

Last Friday, we had something of a new situation for the TouchArcade forums. TouchTen Games, the developer behind the upcoming Target Acquired, made the game's composer, Manami Matsumae, available for a brief "Ask Me Anything" in the game's thread. Matsumae's name may not be well-known, but her work most certainly is. She was the composer on the first Mega Man game, UN Squadron, Magic Sword, and other classics, and has made a recent return to video games, contributing tracks to Mega Man 10, Shovel Knight, Mighty No. 9, and more. Before the "Ask Me Anything" got under way, I had the opportunity to have a brief chat with Matsumae-san about her work with Target Acquired...

Stoic Studio Talks 'Banner Saga' Mobile Development and Direction of Upcoming Sequel

Bringing The Banner Saga [$4.99] to tablets gave John Watson nightmares. “This launch was even bigger to us personally than the original launch,” he explains. The Banner Saga was released for PC and Mac in January before making the jump to tablets early last month. “We’ve been working toward this for a long time. I was extremely excited about the launch, and getting it done was a relief.”..

In the current economy, free-to-play games are becoming not only more prevalent in the app store, but more popular among users of iOS devices. Whether it’s free-to-play with aggressive badgering to purchase in-game currency or items (Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff [Free]), free-to-play with in-app purchases that generally leaves you alone (The Simpsons: Tapped Out [Free]) or premium games that also have staples of free-to-play, such as paywalls and long timers (Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile [Free]), it looks like it’s here to stay...

We Sit Down With CCP and Learn of Mysterious Plans for a Possible 'EVE Mobile'

Iceland-based CCP Games is best known for EVE Online, a ruthless, Byzantine MMO set in the cold, vast reaches of a universe called New Eden, where player-led factions and alliances vie for political clout, territory, and the resources necessary to power their massive war machines...

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