Recently, Glitch Cat was able to snap some of the members of Intoxicate Studios for a quick interview. We recently reviewed their game Afterall: InSanity, and wanted to delve a little bit deeper into their creative process and their thoughts on the series. Hopefully, the interview will be as interesting for you to read as it was for us to conduct!
IR: Can you tell us a little bit about Intoxicate Studios?
Intoxicate was created by a group of ‘inSane’ Fallout fans who dreamed about creating its Polish equivalent. For some years the designed the world using only message boards and in 2008 they turned to Nicolas Games to make this idea a reality. Thus began the work on the Afterfall project. Independence and freedom during the creation of the universe were most important in our cooperation.
IR: Describe the world of Afterfall.
The world of Afterfall shares the same history with ours until the 2nd World War. A set of unexpected coincidences and rapid development of technology leads to the creation of Entropy – a bomb that became the herald of doom. After its mysterious explosion over the English channel a nuclear war unleashed, burying the world under heaps of rubble and nuclear fallout.
IR: What exactly went into coming up with the story of Afterfall: InSanity?
We’ve wanted to tell a personal story set in the vast world of Afterfall. This choice was motivated mainly by the fact that InSanity was intended to be an introduction into our post-apocalyptic reality and we’ve decided that a more focused, personal story will be best to give a glimpse of what’s to come without revealing all of the secrets.
IR: Why develop the story through message boards, rather than taking a more traditional approach?
The first people working on the project were a group of inspired Fallout fans who wanted to create a game of their own. It was impossible to work in one studio so they decided to use message boards to coordinate the project.
IR: What games/films/books — if any — did you look to as inspiration for InSanity and the universe of Afterfall?
Mainly Fallout series, Mad Max and Star Wars movies. Mostly, however, it was the desire to create an alternative version of history and to set our own country right in the middle of it.
IR: I heard it was supposed to be an RPG in the vein of Fallout or S.T.A.L.K.E.R. back when the game was called: “Bourgeoisie: Pearl of the Wastelands.” Why change the original idea of game from an RPG to an Action-Horror game?
The original idea was much too big for a small, inexperienced studio. The project had to be adjusted to the ‘reality’ – our possibilities, experience, costs. But the most important aspect – the Afterfall universe – remained unchanged.
IR: Do you feel that you accomplished something you originally couldn’t by sticking to the change?
Yes, we’ve released a game! But seriously, I think that we’ve created a much more dynamic experience. Afterfall: InSanity was just a prelude, an invitation into the world of Afterfall. The original idea was much too hermetic, focused mainly on the Polish audience. Thanks to InSanity we’ve managed to reach people from other corners of the world as well. The Steam Greenlight community proved that our universe got gamers’ attention – maybe now is a good time to return to some of the original ideas?
IR: Describe your development process for InSanity – was there anything you did especially for this game that you would or wouldn’t do for another game? (Such as, for example, investigating fallout shelters to get an authentic idea of what they looked like?)
We’ve spent a lot (by this I mean A LOT) of time studying documents, plans and pictures (literally thousands of them) of Polish post-industrial buildings and locations – we might say that team was preparing for years before creating the Afterfall universe and, consequently, InSanity.
IR: Unfortunately, I didn’t get to play the Extended Edition of the game for my review – can we get a list of what the Extended Edition changes, and why it was released in the first place?
Most important flaws of the original game – cutscenes and animation – were corrected. We’ve also changed the tutorial system into much less ‘intrusive’ one and decided to improve checkpoint system. Moreover, we’ve added more elements of psychosis and balanced the overall experience (by, for example, limiting the amount of ammunition). The full list of changes and improvements is too long to put it here but it’s easily available for example on Steam and YouTube – in the form of a trailer.
IR: Any plans for a sequel?
Not exactly a sequel, rather a next chapter in the history of Afterfall.
IR: Thanks for your time. If there anything you want your fans to know finishing this interview?
Thank you for all the support, especially lately. It is thanks to you that InSanity will be available on Steam. But most importantly, thank you for your patience and forgiveness.
And there you have it, Glitches! I know our review of the game wasn’t the most sterling of reviews, but from our interview we could obviously tell that Intoxicate really had their hearts in the right place. It’ll only be a matter of time until they can really wow us, and I’m hoping that time is sometime soon!
Keep tuned in for more interviews, game reviews, and news.