Daily updates on video games and popular culture, along with Australia’s grooviest gaming podcast.

Archive for the ‘Interview’ Category

Interview – Blizzard on Diablo III: Reaper of Souls

Posted by Stevie McDonald On Sunday 30 March 2014ADD COMMENTS

When Diablo III was released in 2012, it quickly became the best selling PC game of the year, following in the footsteps of its two predecessors. However, it was not without its criticisms: fans were quick to voice their disapproval of the emphasis given to the auction houses, the manner in which loot dropped, and the lack of PvP, among other more individual gripes with the storyline.

The release of the new expansion, Reaper of Souls, hot on the heels of the most recent patch, commonly referred to as Loot 2.0, has been hailed as a rebirth of the series. It is clear that fans have a certain level of expectation when it comes to the Diablo series and Reaper seems to be breathing new life into what should have been a shining jewel in developer Blizzard’s crown. I began to wonder what features it had that were achieving such standards and, luckily, Lead Character Artist Paul Warzecha was on hand to answer my questions. Read the rest of this entry »

Interview: Eidos Montreal on Thief

Posted by Erin Marcon On Saturday 25 January 20145 COMMENTS

Interview l Preview

Fifteen years after the first game in the series revolutionised the stealth genre, Eidos Montreal is preparing to revive the Thief franchise for publisher Square Enix. While the new game will retain Garrett, the saga’s iconic hooded anti-hero, the action will take place in a whole new timeline. Given that this 2014 model is being pitched more as a reboot than a sequel, long time fans of the series are keen to discover if this is still the Thief they know and love. Read the rest of this entry »

PAX Australia Interview: Man Fight Dragon

Posted by Erin Marcon On Friday 19 July 2013ADD COMMENTS

In this special PAX Australia edition of The Black Panel Interview, Erin talks to Man Fight Dragon founder Lance E. McDonald about bringing Black Annex to PAX, Mike Krahulik’s transgender missteps, the ongoing censorship debate and much more. Check out more PAX coverage here.



Erin Marcon: My guest today is Lance E. McDonald. He is the founder of local indie studio, Man Fight Dragon and the creator of Black Annex, the studio’s forthcoming debut. This isometric action game is part of the Australian Indie Showcase at this week’s PAX event in Melbourne. Lance, thanks for joining me!

Lance E. McDonald: Hey, thanks. How are you doing?

I’m doing very well, thank you. I’ve watched a fair bit of Black Annex footage, and it feels to me like a difficult game to pigeonhole. There’s plenty of action, but there’s also stealth and hacking and team building and customisation. If you had to offer up an elevator pitch for the game, where would you start?

I guess I’d say something like, it’s very much isometric espionage and infiltration with a really big focus on business management as well though. That’s probably the easiest way to sum it up.

And the retro style of the game, it’s more than just skin deep. You’ve actually written the game in QBasic, which these days, cult following aside, is a pretty obscure package. What, to you, are the core characteristics of the package? And let’s just assume that I’m a disgrace to my profession and my entire knowledge of QBasic is based on the Wikipedia entry that I may have just read.

Well I grew up using Basic, lots of variants of Basic, like lots of people did with their Commodore 64s and that sort of thing. So when I got an IBM I used QBasic to make games, that sort of thing. I never really grew out of it. It’s like never growing out of the toys you played with when you were growing up. Now that I can actually use QBasic, I have a tool made by another Australian called QB64 that makes QBasic code run on new computers, because QBasic is for DOS. It’s old as. But yeah, with that now I can keep making games the way I used to when I was really young, but I can make them and everyone can play them and enjoy them just as if they were made using tools that were made in the last five years, that sort of thing. So yeah, the whole game, not just the look of the game, but the way that I make it is really a throw back to what I used to do when I was little, the toys I used to play with growing up. Read the rest of this entry »

PAX Australia Interview: Loki Davison

Posted by Joel Guttenberg On Friday 19 July 2013ADD COMMENTS

In this special PAX Australia edition of The Black Panel Interview, Joel talks to Wander creator Loki Davison about creating a different kind of fantasy game, the emergence of the Oculus Rift, uneducated graphical expectations and much more. Check out more PAX coverage here.



Joel Guttenberg: I have with me today Loki Davison, Creative Directory on Wander which is described as a collaborative, non-combat, non-competitive PC game. Loki and his team will be showing off Wander, along with the Oculus Rift peripheral at their booth at PAX Australia. Before we chat about PAX, Loki can you tell me a little bit about yourself and basically how you guys got into the game industry, just briefly?

Loki Davison: I’ve been working in various areas of programming, and things like that in the past, and lots of different types of art, but lots of my other history inspired Wander because lots of it is inspired with wandering and I was a Nomad for a while in Central Asia – Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Siberia, and The Arctic and the Himalayas – those kind of areas. But part of that experience of exploration and discovery and beauty is part of the themes that come across in Wander. It was also a lot of other things from my past history because that kind of part of the thing with, especially indie games and art in general, and you take all these experiences you’ve had and stick them into the art that you make.

So a culmination of several experiences and things you’ve drawn on in your background?

Yeah, yeah, like the Griffin – the flying experience in that is from my own experiences as a paraglider pilot, a free-flight kind of thing. In a way – it’s as similar as humans can get to a bird-like experience. And, you know, sky-diving – those kind of experiences give you an idea of what flight should feel like, and give you an idea how the mechanics should be designed. So I kinda have a different way of coming at that than some of the developers. Read the rest of this entry »