Thank You For Playing

Amateur game design for the technically impaired

Posts Tagged ‘atmosphere

Interview with Nicklas “Nifflas” Nygren – Creator of Knytt Stories and Within a Deep Forest

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knytt-small2.jpgAnyone who has read just about any one of our posts knows that we’re big Nifflas fans, so it was a great honor when he agreed to be interviewed. I won’t bog you down with a bunch of blah blah blah, since you’re obviously here to see what Nifflas has to say, but it is tempting. I could rant for paragraphs about this; however, I guess I’ll just go with the following.

 

Thank you, Nifflas, for participating, and thank you, visitors, for reading.

 

“It actually took me around 7 years to realize I should keep my projects small.”

 

Nicklas Nygren was born in 1983 in Gävle, Sweden. Today he lives in Umeå, working with the intellectually handicapped at a newspaper. His game portfolio includes Knytt Stories and Within a Deep Forest.

 

You’ve done a wide range of work for your projects, including visual and audio art, besides the general design and engine creation. Is that a result of the difficulty of finding other people or are you just passionate about the entire gamut of game creation? Do you find it easier or more difficult to bring in outsider help as you become more well known?

 

It’s pretty easy to find help as long as you can convince people that you will actually finish your game. The thing is just that I like the graphics and music creation process so much that I want to do a lot of it myself. However, as you can see in the credits list of all my games, I’ve got tons of help as well.

 

About how much time do you spend working through the different aspects of game creation? How much time do you spend, for example, on level design as compared to the visual art?

 

The different aspects are very closely connected to me, when I do all those things in a rather random way. I often create graphics at the same time as designing the level by jumping back and fourth between Photoshop and the level editor. The same goes for music as well. By this reason, it’s quite hard for me to estimate how much time I spend for each thing, but I guess I spend more or less an equal amount of time on each thing.

 

Is there some overarching philosophy you follow when designing games? Something to guide you as you create?

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Written by justindopiriak

March 26, 2008 at 6:33 pm

Game Brainstorm: Serendipity

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Fairly regularly, we post some simple original ideas in the spirit of sharing and discussion. I just recently noticed that these posts are not immediately distinguishable from games that we simply showcase in the case that a reader is just skimming through the headlines. For that reason, I have decided to just tack on a column name from now on. Game Brainstorm… Lazy, I know…

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Riven, one of the main inspirations of this game, featured a world packed with life, history, and significant details.

Serendipity: An exploration platform game with mystery-puzzle gameplay.

In Serendipity, players explore a 2D world which opens up as puzzles are solved and mysteries uncovered. In terms of interface and control, it will function much like Knytt Stories (does this game come up in every one of my posts?), with the exclusion of enemies and death. I choose to take inspiration from this particular game for a number of reasons:

– The focus of Serendipity will be the environment instead of the player character. I haven’t completely decided on whether or not to include other characters at all. I would really like to because I feel that having memorable characters is second only to music in determining the longevity of a game, but it may detract from the mysterious atmosphere I intend to create.

– Players should be able to traverse the world quickly and intuitively.

– A tiny, featureless player character may allow players to project themselves into the game in the same way that a first-person perspective does in other titles, without having to break into 3D.

So much for interface and control; on to the gameplay.

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Written by justindopiriak

March 26, 2008 at 7:37 am