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Default RPGWatch Feature: Jay Barnson Interview

September 8th, 2011, 02:20
Corwin caught up with Jay 'Rampant Coyote' Barnson as the release of Frayed Knights gets close to discuss the game and its development. Here's an excerpt:
RPGWatch: Could you give us some background on what you hoped to achieve when you first began FK?
JB: While I can't even pretend that Frayed Knights is going to make much of a dent in the world of CRPGs, I guess in many ways it's part of my damn-fool idealistic crusade to prove a point. There's a lot of talk about how RPGs have evolved into their current incarnation --- which I feel is more like action gaming with lots of story and the trappings of character progression. I don't believe that's "evolution" so much as an attempt to find a unique selling point in the much larger action game market. I don't really want to turn the clock back to 1993 or anything, but I think the ideas and conventions of the genre from earlier eras are ripe for mining by modern, low-budget indie games. They may not be able to sell a million copies anymore, but they don't need to!
So besides the humor aspect, what I was really trying to capture was the feel and flavor of not only the old-school CRPGs, but also the thrill of playing dice-and-paper RPGs back in the early 80's. I don't know if it's possible to bottle that - or if it is, if I have one iota of the talent necessarily to make it happen - but that's what I've been going for. And I wanted it to be a game that would still be a fun RPG even if the humor didn't work at all. I've also tried to address some of the deficiencies of the genre. For example, I've tried to make picking locks and disarming traps an interesting mini-game of its own, and then I introduced the drama star system to encourage an alternative to save-scumming.
Read it all here.
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