Interview with Failure Developers Dream Harvest
On Tuesday 2nd March 16 we brought you the news of Dream Harvest’s unique RTS Cyberpunk strategy game, Failure being published to Kickstarter in a bid to make this dream a reality. The team here at Faceless Gaming recently caught up with Justin French the creative Director and Sven Herrmann the AI/Graphics Programmer with a number of questions which Justin and Sven were more than happy to answer.
To get a feel for the game and the project goals please visit our article from Tuesday to find out more
Q: What inspired you to create a Cyberpunk RTS game?
Justin: Several things really; firstly I’ve always been a fan of Cyberpunk and post future settings from films and other media, there’s something enchanting in creating a vision of what our future might be, but at the same time it’s quite hard to be completely original – this is why I think Failure is somewhat special, in that it’s not set in the real-world for the most part, but instead the cyber world of the MetaNet, a VR replacement for the internet. The other reason…and this kind of ties into your second question, is that the game is set in the same world as its sequel, a game we were working on before starting on Failure.
Q: If Failure becomes successful would you consider a sequel to the game?
Justin: It really depends on how successful Failure is. We plan to support it for quite some time after its full release with both free and paid story content, but it really depends on whether people enjoy the game and we see demand for the additional content, the game is built to give you 100’s of hours of entertainment due to the ever evolving Faction war which unlocks later in the game.
In terms of a direct sequel within the same genre of game, no, this is not something we really want to do, we’ve always been of the mind at Dream Harvest that each game we work on should combine a new set of genres together and driving things forward with a narrative focus…the next game will be altogether different, its set after the events of Failure, but uses some other cool genres that we love at Dream Harvest.
Sven: I don’t think we will do a direct sequel to Failure. We will probably work on other games in the same ‘universe’ and continue telling the story.
Q: Do you have any plans to release Failure on Xbox One and PS4?
Justin: This is something we’re considering, however our one worry is getting the controls to work as well as they do with a mouse and keyboard. RTS games have a history of not controlling very well on Consoles so if we did it would require a whole redesign of the Ui to suit the new input method. On top of this would be the costs associated with console development. If people want it, we’ll definitely consider it, but we need to secure funding to do so.
Sven: We would love to, but it really depends on the success and if we can get the funding to start console development. @Justin: we really should make that a stretch goal for our Kickstarter.
Q: Are you currently working on any other titles at present?
Justin: Not at the moment, we’re a small core team of only 4 people (2 Programmers, 1 Game Designer and an Audio / Game Designer / Creative Director) and our art team and writers are freelancers, so it would be overkill working on more than one project at a time. I’m personally working 7 days a week / 13 to 14 hours a day just on Failure. Game development is really tough and getting just a single game to market is incredibly complex and takes a lot out of you.
Sven: We have several unfinished titles we put on hold for the moment. Once failure is done we plane to continue working on some of them.
Q: What games did you play growing up and what was the first game you recall playing?
Justin: So, my first memories are playing games on a PC, but I really can’t remember what they were. The first home console I got was an original NES and I used to love Battletoads, Mario and for some strange reason the really crappy Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game that came out for it!
Sven: I’ve always been a PC gamer. The first game I remember playing on a PC was Dig Dug, also really liked the old Space Quest, Kings Quest, Police Quest games (the good old Sierra adventure games). Never really cared about what to play as long as it’s fun.
Q: Do Dream Harvest have any other games available to purchase right now?
Justin: No, unfortunately not. We spent 3 years prototyping ideas before settling on Failure. We have several projects in the pipeline from our time prototyping, but nothing available on the marketplace.
Q: Can you tell us a little more about Dream Harvest and the team there? What is involved on a day to day basis?
Justin: So we’re a distributed team – this means we don’t have a centralized office and instead use the internet to communicate. Milcho(gameplay programmer), Leigh (game designer) and I are based in the UK and Sven (Graphics and Ai programmer) is based in Switzerland. Our Writer, Antony Johnston is also here in the UK and our art team are in the USA, Canada and Thailand. So the one thing we need to contend with is the time differences, but this hasn’t been too much of an issue due to our long working hours.
I’m the only full time person at Dream Harvest and I came from an audio background working on AAA games such as Star Wars: The Old Republic, The Witcher 2, Fable 2 among many others while working for recording studios such as Side and OMUK, but often I was working as an outsourcer from home, so I’m quite used to the weird and long working hours that are inherent with us at Dream Harvest.
My general day starts at around 10am – 11am where I’ll check and reply to emails, messages from our followers on social media. I’ll then take a look at the weeks tasks and delegate what needs to be done by each of the team members on a given day. After this I’ll probably start doing some sound design for one of the new buildings or Units or writing some new music for one of the levels before moving onto planning or writing some more documentation for the game mechanics before moving onto making sure the Art team know what they’re supposed to be working on and giving them direction. Then in the evening Milcho and I will probably have a few games of Multiplayer and discuss balance changes and additions to the levels. Though every day is different really!
Sven: As a distributed team, where most of us have a ‘normal’ job besides working for Dream harvest, it easily gets quite complex trying to manage what needs to be done. Justin is doing a great job, but we really wish we would be able to work fulltime on Failure as it would make things a lot easier.
On a day to day basis… getting home from my day job, open slack (the chat tool we’re using), read all the messages that were posted during the day, trying to figure out what needs to be done next and then do whatever needs to be done 😉
Q: Can you elaborate on the story further? Is it still very much under wraps or do you have some more story details to add?
Justin: It’s still pretty under wraps. Antony Johnston, our writer and the former writer of Dead Space, Binary Domain and a load of really cool graphic novels and comics only joined us at the end of January and he’s currently working on the story…though he’s even keeping it under wraps from us! I’ve given him complete creative control over the story so even we’re excited to find out what he’s come up with!
This certainly sounds like a very exciting project, we can’t wait to see how this development goes and we hope Dream Harvest raise the goal needed to make this unique RTS Cyberpunk game. If you’d like to contribute towards the Kickstarter, check out the Failure Kickstarter link.
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About: Jamie B
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