The Amiga is the gift that keeps in giving. Why, I hear you ask? Indie Developers like Badgerpunch Games Studios, continue to churn out amazing games, and not just for the Amiga. No! The Commodore 64 is also supported with games like Rogue 64.
Badgerpunch Games caught my eye during some research I did for an Amiga Episode titled 6 Amiga Upcoming Games that will tickle your fancy. Perhaps I should change what I said here because it was shortly after I had edited this video that I learnt about an upcoming title called Roguecraft. What is Roguecraft? Rather than me sit here and whaffle; I decided to reach out to Ricki Sickenger (Lead Programmer) to find out more about what we can expect from this upcoming Amiga Game.
1/ So Rick, tell us a bit about your gaming history?
I got a Commodore64 when I was 11 years old, with the 30-Games Collection from Argus Press. That was the start of a lovely relationship with the C64 and gaming. I started programming BASIC on the C64, and when I upgraded to an Amiga a few years later I made myself learn 68k assembly. I never made any games on the C64 or Amiga even though I was pretty active in the Amiga demo scene for a while. That was where I got to know Henning Ludvigsen, who makes the pixels in our games.
I ended up getting a computer programming degree and in my mid-twenties starting my own gaming company with some friends. We wanted to make an MMO, and after 10 years of development we released Darkfall Online in 2009.
After that I was pretty fed up with games development and started working as an IT consultant. It only took a couple of years before I started making games again, but in my spare time now. My friend Henning Ludvigsen and I started Badger Punch Games to make retro-inspired games.
In 2019 I was missing the good old times I had with my Commodore 64, and decided to try to make a C64 game. Henning and I ended up making multiple games. The last game was a roguelike called Rogue64 that got quite a lot of attention, and excellent feedback from the players. It even got some mainstream gaming press attention, and it was nominated for multiple game-of-the-year 2022 awards.
I never really had any consoles growing up. I used to play games on the C64 and Amiga, and then I got a PC and continued gaming there. I do have a Nintendo Switch though, and I love playing games on it. :-)
2/ What inspires you to create video games?
Mostly the fact that creating video games is a way to express creativity that I do not have an outlet for in my day job.
There is something about making something that needs to work, look ok, sound good, and on top of that has to be fun. My part of the job is programmer and game designer, and seeing all the parts come together to make a great game is magical!
3/ Badger Punch Games; Is this a game studio you created?
Badger Punch Games is a studio Henning and I created to make retro-inspired games. We ended up making games on Retro systems (C64, Amiga and Mega65 so far), but we have also made games for modern platforms like Android and Windows.
4/ Roguecraft is your upcoming title for the Amiga (and other platforms). How would you describe Roguecraft?
Roguecraft is a turn-based roguelike where the focus is simple and fun gameplay.
A roguelike is often a dungeon crawler game where the aim is to get as far as you can in the dungeon. If you are lucky you might get to the end where a boss-monster and treasures await. You only get one life, but since the levels are randomly generated then every play of the game is a unique experience.
There is an element of strategy to playing a roguelike, and as you learn the game mechanics you get further and further into the game.
Roguecraft tries to balance keeping the mechanics interesting without making them too complicated, to maximize the joy of playing the game and the replayability of it. You should be able to complete the game in around 40 minutes if you have a perfect run.
We are also making sure Roguecraft looks as good as possible for a non-AGA Amiga game.
5/ What kind of experience will players feel when they play Roguecraft?
The players will hopefully feel joy, dread, a tiny bit of frustration, and lots of accomplishment playing Roguecraft.
6/ Who are the pixel artists behind the game?
Henning Ludvigsen is doing the lovely pixel art for Roguecraft. As described earlier, Henning is the other half of Badger Punch Games, and a good friend of mine. He is an excellent artist, and in his day job he works on board game art for recognizable brands like Game Of Thrones, Star Wars, Stranger Things, and more!
7/ If you could remake any game for the Amiga (even a current gen game), what would it be?
Wizball. I loooved Wizball on the C64, but I really did not like it on the Amiga. There is something about the over saturated colors and game play that just isn't right. That game deserves a better version on the Amiga. :-)
8/ Where can people buy a physical copy of Roguecraft?
Roguecraft will be published by Bitmap Soft. We have some very special plans for the box, and it will be even better than the very lovely box that Rogue64 came in. Pre-orders will appear on https://www.bitmapsoft.co.uk when we are ready.
9/ Any plans on a release date?
We are planning to release Roguecraft in October this year.
10/ Where can people find you online? And where can they find more information about Roguecraft?
Badger Punch Games has an official site at www.badgerpunch.com.
We also self-publish our games on our Itch site. Digital copies of our games can be bought at: https://www.badgerpunch.com/
Interview by: Gemma @ Juicy Game Reviews / TheGebs24
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