thechineseroom is the name of a development research project I run at the University of Portsmouth, UK. We're interested in first person gaming - particularly, using mods to explore questions about gaming that you can't answer by just analysing commercial releases or theorising about them.

Report article RSS Feed Finishing Korsakovia, thinking about the next step

Posted by chineseroom on Sep 16th, 2009

So we launch Korsakovia in 4 days and I'm already getting cold sweats about the reaction to it. So close to it now, have played through it that many times that I just have no idea if it's any good or not, and all I can see are the things we've have done differently if we were starting it all over again right now. What I can report back from the crazy world of Korsakovia is that a) I think I may be done with Source for the time being... time to move to a more contemporary engine. Just too many things we wanted to do we couldn't without ripping the codebase apart and frankly, we don't have the time or experience for that (or the money). So CryEngine is looking pretty likely for whatever we do next...

And b) whatever its faults, Korsakovia has proved (to me, at least), that you can 'do' an abstract, more experimental story like Dear Esther in a more 'traditional' game setting. Even more than Korsakovia. Don't get me wrong, I've got a massive amount of respect for game writing - frankly, those people giving it a bad press don't, I think, really grasp just how bloody difficult it is to get right - but this has to be our next step: a proper, full game. I'm not talking about 20+ hours of gameplay and a full dev budget, but at least scaling up to a self-contained indie release, on the scale of something like Zeno Clash or The Path - both of which I have a lot of time for, but also think we've got something really different to offer.

So that's the next step. Get this evil little bastard that's taken over my life out into the world and watch it stumble around blindly (it cannot find its eyes, y'see), then crack on with some serious fundraising. It'll probably be a bit quiet in thechineseroom for a bit, whilst I do the rounds, and Adam, Jess and I get our heads together and see what we can come up with - early conversations have included an FPS opera; medical nanotechnology variations on Descent, my old fave rip on Day of the Triffids - the blind squad based shooter, and a little number about a Victorian psychiatrist who suddenly realises he is actually God. So the usual, boring stuff really.

All and any comments and feedback on Korsakovia would be absolutely brilliant. Will also be uploading the VMF and codebase a while after the mod itself as a seperate download. We're looking into making Jessica's music (including a re-mastered version of the Dear Esther soundtrack) available through iTunes, so watch this space for that too. I might *even just maybe* stick the script for Korsakovia up too, if you lot ask nicely...

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DukeNico Sep 20 2009 says:

Oh yes please, the script. There are some moments when I couldn't hear properly everything due to the noise of fog monsters and no captioning, so... yeah. That'd be great! I loved it, by the way.

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