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Q&A: 'GDC: Game Connection - Nicolas Magnier, Krysalide'

During the Game Connection portion of the GDC, Gamasutra met up with Nicolas Magnier from Gaming-Side, and his cohorts at Krysalide...
During the Game Connection portion of the GDC, Gamasutra met up with Nicolas Magnier from Gaming-Side, and his cohorts at Krysalide, a new French developer who aims to revitalize the point and click genre. Their game is called Cassius Pearl, which features a unique art style, and a whole heap of humor. An associated company, Dream On, will be working on a DS port. Gamasutra: What made you want to make a point and click game in this day and age? Nicolas Magnier: In fact, the first concept of the game was a platform game on PlayStation 2. And we moved to the PC, and then to the point and click because it was easier to create, and easier to pitch to publishers. GS: You thought that point and click was easier to pitch? NM: Well, it’s difficult to pitch a platform game on PC. GS: Oh, it’s because you had to move to PC, I see. NM: Also in Europe, a game called Runaway was released, and it was a bit of a genre comeback for gamers. It reminded people that point and click games are good. I think that’s one of the reasons. Maybe it’s not well known in the U.S., but in Europe, it was a great comeback for the genre. GS: So is this totally finished? NM: No, it’s about 60% finished. GS: How easy do you think it is to port something like this to the DS? NM: Well a lot of things have to be redone, resynched, and you have fewer polygons, so you have to downgrade the graphics, but basically I think there’s something really nice about the interface. There’s something really natural about it, for point and click type games. I think the spirit, and most of the graphic style will be intact on the DS, though we will have to adapt some things. But it’s definitely worth it to try. As far as I recall, the only adventure game released for the Nintendo DS as Another Code from Nintendo. It was quite successful in Europe. So we think that with some unique graphics, and a really crazy humorous story, we could create something great for Nintendo DS. GS: It runs really smooth – does it have a high spec? NM: Basically it runs at a lower level than any modern FPS. It’s designed to run on low-end PCs. GS: Yeah, I think that’s necessary for the average adventure game player. They don’t tend to upgrade much. NM: There’s nothing that’s very high-end about it-it’s a game that will run on any average PC. (The character enters the bar) Ah – the bar is one of my favorite locations, it’s so cute. GS: Yeah, I saw that there’s a guy sitting next to a bar of wood. with lipstick on it. NM: Yes-that’s his wife. GS: When do you project to have it finished? Or are you going to wait for a publisher? NM: I think we’ll wait for a publisher to finish it. But I think once we’ve gotten a publisher’s signature, the game will be release in 10 months. GS: So is this the first game you guys have done together? NM: Yes. GS: Is it your first project, or did you work in games before? NM: This is the first project, but we also do subcontracting. We’ve done a few contract jobs, and work for different companies, like for art and things like that. GS: Is it difficult to get contract work right now? NM: (laughs) A little bit. GS: It doesn’t seem like the industry is quite ready for it yet. NM: (showing a level editor) So yeah, right now on PC this part is pretty heavy, but on the DS I think there will be some tricks to make it work.

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