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Might & Magic X Update: Jon Van Caneghem Interview

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Might & Magic X Update: Jon Van Caneghem Interview

Interview - posted by Infinitron on Thu 3 October 2013, 22:55:18

Tags: Jon Van Caneghem; Might & Magic X - Legacy; Might and Magic

The Might & Magic X Legacy team has continued with their series of retrospective interviews with figures from the series' past. Today, they've brought in the big man himself - Jon Van Caneghem, creator of the Might & Magic series. Here's some of what he had to say:

1. CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR CAREER?

I started designing and programming in college at UCLA, but I played a lot of board games and paper RPG’s before that. You can find a quick summary of a very long timeframe on Wikipedia.

Ironically, one of the compelling forces that made me make the first Might and Magic, was the desire to play RPG’s more often. It was always tough to get a group together on Saturdays etc, but if I could create a great PC game then I could play every day nonstop!

Over the years I think I have done most every discipline in the games business, from programming, design, art, sound, writing, sales, marketing, finance, legal…etc. We had to do it all in the early days, but this has given me a unique perspective on the industry that has served me well over the years.

3. CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE GENESIS OF THE MIGHT & MAGIC SERIES?

I wanted to make a party based RPG that was very strategic, had a free open world to explore and lots of fun puzzles to solve.Wizardry I, Ultima I and Dungeons and Dragons were the initial influence, but I wanted to go further and express my style of play in the design.Learning to program and figuring out all the technical barriers was just a means to an end, creating the best game possible was my driving force.

5. AS A FAN OF THE SERIES, HERE'S SOMETHING I ALWAYS WANTED TO ASK YOU. WHAT WERE YOUR PLANS FOR THE STORYLINE OF THE SERIES? WOULD WE HAVE DISCOVERED THE SECRETS OF THE ANCIENTS AND THE KREEGANS? ANYTHING YOU CAN SHARE WITH US?

Originally, the Might and Magic story ended with World of Xeen.

But with the popularity of Heroes and a demand for new MM games, we started it all up again and took things in many directions.

And yes we had plans to finalize the Kreegans story and visit the Ancients home world…

6. WHEN DEVELOPING A GAME IN GENERAL, WHAT DO YOU AIM FOR?

Initially, something I enjoy playing and have fun with.

Then broaden the appeal for the biggest possible range of players without breaking the original game.

11. YOUR MESSAGE TO THE FANS OF MIGHT & MAGIC?

Thank you! And yes I would like to make another one!
Aww, he's so enthusiastic. Here's a nice photo of JVC meeting up with Julien Pirou and other members of the MMX team at Gamescom. You might also be interested in our own interview with him from last year.

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