Retimed, previously reviewed by Cliqist, is Team Maniax’s arena shooter, a fast-paced multiplayer experience with slow-mo action scenes inspired by the hit film The Matrix. Team Maniax has also entered the territory of esports, with the Swiss Made Games League hosting a Retimed tournament.
Switzerland-based Team Maniax (founding developers Max Striebel and Annika Rüegsegger) took the time for an email interview with Cliqist to talk about Retimed in the Swiss Made Games League and esports.
Cliqist: Had you always planned for Retimed to be compatible with esports?
Team Maniax: When we started with the project it wasn’t one of our goals. We play a lot of competitive games in our free time, so we value nonrandom mechanics. Perhaps that’s the reason why it became compatible with esports.
How did your game get involved with the Swiss Made Games League? Did they approach you, or did you approach them?
We met Nicolas [Nicolas Pidancet, founder of the Swiss Made Games League] at Gamescom 2017. He was immediately fascinated by the game, and thought it would be a perfect fit for a Swiss Made Games League (an idea he had in his head for some time). So he founded the SMGL with Retimed as the pilot project in the first year.
Do you feel like the Swiss Made Games League has given your game support, like in terms of promotion, or other aspects?
Yes; especially the feedback we got from people who know the game inside and out, was extremely valuable.
What has been your favorite part about Retimed in the Swiss Made Games League?
It is amazing to see players being so good in a game we’ve created. Especially the three major tournaments, where the final was played on the big stage, was an exciting experience.
Have you been involved with organizing the competition at all, or did you just provide the game for it?
It is really relaxing for us that we don’t have to help with the organization of the tournament. We added a special tournament mode to the game for the SMGL, and we print the T-shirts for the winner of the major tournaments. But everything else is made by the SMGL team.
Are there other aspects of esports that you enjoy, or that inspire you?
We are watching a lot of esports ourselves, and we think the community that is built around a game, and its professional and casual players, is fantastic and unique.
How would you describe the state of esports and indie games in Switzerland?
Both are still small, but growing. It is for us, as a Swiss indie developer, a pleasure to get in touch with the esports community in Switzerland.
Do you have plans for Retimed in esports beyond the Swiss Made Games League?
We haven’t thought about any big plans yet. Next year we will add an online multiplayer mode for the game, so it will be easier for people to play together. We are curious about how that will affect the SMGL and the esports part of Retimed.
Retimed joins the ranks of other competitive indie games organized into a tournament setting, such as Towerfall at the Indie Olympics in 2016. Other indie games have had some form of involvement with esports, including the MIX at EVO 2018, where a selection of competitive games from indie studios—like Punch Planet—were showcased alongside the premiere fighting game championship in Las Vegas.
On Facebook, the Swiss Made Games League explains they were partly formed out of the Swiss Esports Federation‘s desire to set up a national competition for games made in Switzerland, highlighting the country’s local creators.
The organization’s Facebook goes on to say that the Retimed competition, after starting in April, is scheduled to end with finals in December.