Seb Burnett (Englisch)
Gesprächspartner: Michael Stein
Vom: 22.10.2015 „If the kickstarter fails, are there any other options to fund the game?“

Seb Burnett: „Well, we don't intend to let it fail, Michael! But we are eligible for funding in the UK and now we are partnering with Deck13 they have promised to look out for us. We are also making money on Episode 1, just not as quickly as we need to start production straight away. Episode 2 WILL happen, the Kickstarter is just a way of making it happen sooner!“

A-T: „The german developer Deck13 helped creating the PC version for Steam and especially the german translation for the first part. Will they also be involved in Part 2?“

Seb Burnett: „Yes. Jan, Marco and Florian have been a great help. We are partnering with them from the outset now and they are helping promote us and to work on a marketing strategy. We are also working together on the puzzles and they are lending their considerable expertise and helping us make the gameplay more challenging without losing the charm of the first game.“

A-T: „The first part was pretty short, will the second one be longer? What do you think will the total playtime for both parts be?“

Seb Burnett: „It still took some players over 3 hours to finish... But I admit for a seasoned Adventure Gamer it was way too easy. We had focused mostly on the humour and characters and the puzzles were too straightforward. It was the first game we ever made, though so we have learnt a lot from our experience. Episode 2 is much more involved and will be at least 4 hours long - the more money we raise on Kickstarter the more content we can make though! I'd love to be able to make it 8 hours long, but that all costs extra! If we raise $3 million like Broken Age did we will make a game that takes 56 hours to complete. I promise.

In total Episode 1 and 2 should have a combined time of around 6 hours. 6 hours of quality bad jokes!“

A-T: „Will you have the same speakers for part 2 you had in part 1?“

Seb Burnett: „Yes, Bertram, Gavin, Lord Arthwipe, Emmelina all those actors are coming back.But we also have some new and very special people joining us to voice some of the new characters. I'm very excited about it and will be making an announcement soon!“

A-T: „What are the future plans after Bertram is finished. Will there be other Adventure games from Rumpus Animation?“

Seb Burnett: „We are working on a couple of other game ideas that we would love to make. But Bertram is our number 1 priority. I've got so many ideas for him. I'd love to make a whole series where he can go and have Adventures at the Centre of the Earth, On the Moon, In a Lost World. He can literally go anywhere! He just needs to catch Geoff first so that people take him seriously!“

A-T: „How difficult is it to make a funny adventure game?“

Seb Burnett: „Humour is always difficult. Everyone has a different idea of what is funny. I tried to write Bertram so that there are lots of different levels of humour, visual, word-play, bad-jokes, slapstick. Mostly we've had a good response, but there are always going to be some people who don't find it funny. They are wrong though. Ha ha.“

A-T: „How would you define your sense of humor?“

Seb Burnett: „Bertram is quite a silly game. The humour is light-hearted, but has a bit of a dark edge. Have you ever seen The League of Gentlemen comedy show. That is a big inspiration for me. They use characters very well to tell quite silly gags, but it's all part of quite a dark and disturbing world.“

A-T: „What makes your comic adventure game different from others (storytelling, puzzle design, etc.)?“

Seb Burnett: „Our game is all about the characters. Episode 1 is probably closer to an animation than game, but Episode 2 will have more complex puzzles. It's important to me that they all fit within the Bertram's world though and enhance the story rather than just block it.“

A-T: „Do you think there is a renaissance of comic adventures trying to go against the interactive mature storytelling grain of other indies/AAA developers?“

Seb Burnett: „There is certainly a renaissance in point and clicks. I love story in general so it's nice to see a whole range of different types. But at Rumpus we like to have fun, so we try and make fun stories. It's the sort of game I want my daughter to play. One where she has to think a bit and it's not just mindless repetition. There is a lot of reference to old films, Victorian Novels and history in Bertram and I would love it if it helps inspire someone to look into those things as well.“

A-T: „Are classic point-and-click adventure games still relevant in today's point-and-watch-experience genre?“

Seb Burnett: „They should be! There are too many cabbages out there, like you say, who just point and watch. We need to keep championing point and clicks! But we are up against huge budgets and marketing campaigns... that's why we need to stick together and help each other out!“

A-T: „What are your inspirations concerning the art direction/character design of your game?

Seb Burnett: „I've always loved Victoriana and so a lot of the design is based on old posters and photographs of Victorian people or streets. But if you are asking about the noses, that's just how I like drawing them!

I take inspiration from films, books, cartoons, illustration, real-life. Everywhere. A lot of the things Bertram does or says are based on my real-life experiences. It's semi-autobiographical.“

A-T: „What are the challenges of episodic gaming?

Seb Burnett: „Well, we hoped the benefits would outweigh the challenges. We are a very small team working with a very small budget so we wanted to go episodic so that each episode pays for the next. It's not quite worked out like that, which is why we are doing the kickstarter.

I've had feedback from some people saying they want each episode to be self-contained so we are going to do that in future. There will be an overall progression of Bertram's story, but each game will be a seperate adventure from now on.“

A-T: „Do you have any interesting/funny anecdotes from development?

Seb Burnett: „I nearly threw our lead programmer/game designer Alexander Birke out a window once. I don't think that's very funny... but we're all friends again now!“