Here at Anyday Reviews, we are keen to find the next up and coming game developer with new and intriguing titles to be gracing our screens in the near future. Knowing the volatile nature of the gaming world and the stiff competition out there, supporting indie developers is something we want to do more of.
Our latest article series, “The Indie Insight”, provides us the opportunity to reach out to game developers and gain a greater understanding of game development, the inspiration behind the design, the challenges and pitfalls of creating games, and ultimately, get us excited for an upcoming title while also getting to know an indie developer.
This week, I was fortunate enough to speak with Vincent Metallo, a gamer, developer and graphical designer over at Sköll Studio (Twitter: @SkollStudio). Said developer has personally completed work on the game, Koloro, which is now available on Steam, and has also begun work on a new game which caught my eye on my Twitter feed a few weeks ago. He took the time out to share more about his latest project.
“Tell us a bit about yourself as a game developer”
My name is Vincent and I have been working as a graphical designer in the video game industry for the past three years. I’ve worked on many games during this time, however two years ago I launched my own indie game studio named ‘Sköll Studio.’ We are a small team of three people who worked on the conception of ‘Koloro’, a puzzle platformer. Now that ‘Koloro’ is finished and released on PC, I have now turned my attention to the latest project, ‘Last Moon.’
“What is the premise behind your new game, ‘Last Moon’?”
In ‘Last Moon’, for some mysterious reason that I will keep a secret, for now, the moon is cracking and some parts of it are falling on earth. Unfortunately, the lunar energy contained in the moon fragments are corrupting nature and monsters start to appear. Some of these monsters begin to exploit the energy of the fragments, whereas others use it to exchange for money – in short, chaos ensues! Throughout the game, you will embody a young boy possessed by a lunar spirit that fell with the moon fragments and this allows the body of the young man to survive. You will have to find the other lunar spirits that have fallen on earth and by combining forces, restore the world to its original state.
“What is your inspiration for the game?”
For ‘Last Moon’, I have mainly been inspired by all the great 90s RPGs that I’ve played during my childhood on the Super Nintendo! Of course, the main inspiration is ‘Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past’, but I would consider our latest game to be a mix between classic Zelda titles and the RPG elements of games such as ‘Secret of Mana.’ As a gamer myself, I am also looking to use a lot of ideas I like from games I have recently played. With ‘Last Moon’, I really want to make a unique RPG with a lot of content and elements of gameplay which are both varied and original.
“What difficulties have you faced during development so far?”
As I am in the early stages of development, having only worked on ‘Last Moon’ for three months, I have not faced too many difficulties so far. Furthermore, the work I have done on ‘Koloro’ has proven invaluable. I learnt a lot on that project and the mistakes I made last time, I am making sure I do not make this time. I have improved myself a lot as a graphic designer but I have also learnt a lot about game design, marketing and communication. The project allowed me to make many professional contacts and that is very important in the field of entrepreneurship! So for now, everything is going well!
“The art style of ‘Last Moon’ is very endearing, how much has it developed since the early stages?”
What has changed the most is the appearance of the character! I did a lot of testing and research to make it look how I wanted it to. I still think of adding elements to him to make him as cool as possible, but I am not there yet. This is different to the scenery, as I knew from the beginning what I wanted it to look like so I improved the assets but I have not changed the overall look very much at all.
Here are some screenshots showing the game evolution:
“When can we expect to see ‘Last Moon’ released?”
As we are in the early stages of development, it is hard to put a definitive date on release. Being a gamer myself, I place great importance on a finished product which is not rushed and does what it set out to do. I have a planned release for the end of 2019 on all major platforms, including PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch. Closer to the time, I will be looking to launch a closed alpha version before the release for the players who are interested so stay tuned!
“Finally, any advice for a new developer just starting out?”
My advice is to go out a lot and meet people who have experience in the field. Also, you have to produce, produce and produce again to upgrade your skills. Most importantly though, expect mistakes on your first project. It is useless to stay stuck in development of one game for a long time – times change! Understand the mistakes to avoid reproducing them a second time! Go forward; it is the only way to learn something and to improve yourself!
I am sure you will agree, Vincent looks to be on to a winner with his latest project. The attention to detail, intriguing storyline, and funky art style, coupled with his previous experiences in the gaming world, leave me full of confidence that this is one to watch! Give him a follow at @SkollStudio and @LastMoonGame for all the latest updates and key developments.