with Greg Micek
Afterimage is one of those games that’s striking from the moment you see it. The imagery brings back memories of various cyberpunk themed games from the 90’s, such as Syndicate and Blade Runner. I recently had the opportunity to chat with the two brother team behind it, 16BitGenocide to get some more details on the game and its current Kickstarter campaign.
Cliqist : Can you tell me a bit about yourself? What sort of history do you have with game development?
16BitGenocide : Our studio, which we have titled ’16BitGenocide’ consists of two people who happen to be, by events beyond our control, brothers. We are self taught hobbyist game developers and freelance artists who have a dream of making games full time. We’re hoping to use this game as our opening salvo into the world of professional game development.
Cliqist : How would you describe Afterimage to someone that hasn’t seen the Kickstarter page?
16BitGenocide : The game is still in the early development, however you’ll play as a competitive gamer and their newly acquired robot investigating the robot creator’s death. To progress in this story you have some platforming, stealth and combat challenges to overcome. In addition you will also be able to play mini-games which will unlock blocked paths and reveal new clues.
Cliqist : There seems to be a lot of social commentary in Afterimage; what inspired that?
16BitGenocide : Any art is a product of its time, information security and theft are a large part of our current Gestalt, so these themes have made their way into our narrative. It also deals with the ‘post-pop’ culture we occupy, in which the often fruitless desire to invent a new aesthetic leads to evermore outlandish attempts to find originality. This statement is DRM-free, but read the attached license as to its allowed use.
Cliqist : What other games would you compare Afterimage to?
16BitGenocide : Tough to pin down- Metal Gear Solid-esque mechanics (evasion, stealth, combat) for the isometric view, adventure-story exploration like Shenmue and mini-games similar to classic sidescrolling platformers with hand drawn sprite animations.
Cliqist : The Afterimage Kickstarter hasn’t really taken off yet; what do you attribute the sluggishness to?
16BitGenocide : We freed up some time and felt we could try a Kickstarter while doing some full time development work. So far that has been about getting our code base in order, hence the flashy updates have not been happening as much as would be preferable. However, we still feel good about where we are despite the current money amount. The project was a little rushed out as we are trying to coincide it with some free-time that we have available, but we will update regularly and see if we can’t get a little momentum. With a limited team size we don’t have much in the way of PR. Interviews like this are a start.
Cliqist : Not to jinx anything, but what happens if the Kickstarter campaign isn’t successful?
16BitGenocide : We will keep working on it intently and check our options when we get there. Perhaps we’ll try another Kickstarter, using the lessons learned from this one, probably asking for less money and curtailing the development time to fit any constraints. We might also look into offering the game through an early access model and continue development that way. No Seppuku planned.
Cliqist : There are a lot of scams and broken promises on Kickstarter. What kind of assurances can you offer to potential backers that you can deliver on your commitments?
16BitGenocide : It’s kind of like the problem of proving I am a conscious being and not a ‘philosophical zombie’. The best we can do is give our word that we will deliver the game and, better yet, demonstrate our progress towards said goal. In the grand scheme of things we’re just another couple random people on the internet, but we hope that as we update people can see the seriousness of our endeavor. Really it will be our backers who have to make that call.
Cliqist : Can you close us out with an Afterimage inspired haiku?
16BitGenocide : I’m guessing you saw our IndieDB haiku, so how about some fresh ones:
Making games is hard.
Eating tacos is easy.
Both make you gassy.
Neon city lights.
Thanks to the gang at 16BitGenocide for taking the time to answer our questions! You can learn more about Afterimage by heading over to its Kickstarter campaign. You can track the progress of the Afterimage Kickstarter on our Campaign Calendar.