Official Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Codex Interview RPG Codex Interview: Chris Bischoff on Beautiful Desolation

Discussion in 'RPG Codex News & Content Comments' started by Infinitron, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2011
    Messages:
    81,920
    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Tags: Beautiful Desolation; Chris Bischoff; The Brotherhood

    We’ve always had a soft spot for adventure games here on the Codex. Indeed, I like to think that our Adventure Gaming board is one of the top adventure game forums on the Internet, and there's a small group of independent adventure game developers who are long-time friends of the site. Among them is Chris Bischoff AKA Pyke, a South African game designer of many talents who alongside his brother Nic is responsible for 2015's sci-fi horror adventure Stasis and its standalone expansion Cayne. Their latest creation, out today on Steam and GOG, is the colorful post-apocalyptic adventure Beautiful Desolation. We interviewed Chris about Stasis back in 2013 and it's only natural that we should do so again for Beautiful Desolation, which features a distinctly RPG-inspired aesthetic and even has a combat system. So without further ado:

    To start things off, let’s assume we haven’t read anything about Beautiful Desolation. Tell us about the game’s setting. What year does it take place? What planet is it set on? Who are these two brothers and what are they doing there?

    Beautiful Desolation is an adventure game set in the distant future - starting in the late 1970s, when a monolith of unknown origin - the Penrose - appeared in the skies of Cape Town, South Africa. This sends the world on an alternate path of technological growth, development, and eventual war.

    The arrival of the Penrose resulted in the death of Mark Leslie's fiancé, later he pulls his brother into the mystery and his search for answers. Trying to figure out just what the Penrose is, who (if anyone) is responsible for its sudden arrival and disruption of the world.

    In general, how would you characterize Beautiful Desolation’s puzzle design? You’ve probably got an entire puzzle design philosophy that you’ve developed over the years. Can you share it with us?

    Early on we set up 3 pillars of the game – story, character, and exploration - and all of our choices had to support these three pillars. As long as the puzzles worked within that framework we knew that they’d feel connected in the game world.

    We were heavily inspired by Star Control 2’s integration of the story and puzzles, and how the idea of holy relics drove their narrative forward.

    Because Beautiful Desolation is more opened ended and nonlinear, we modified the more traditional ‘lock and key’ puzzle design to fit into a game where you can find any door and any key, in any order. So, in this game we focused on characters and their stories in the world and tried to ensure the puzzles revealed the story – rather than the puzzles blocking the player’s path forward.

    Beautiful Desolation is an adventure game, but it’s clearly been influenced by the RPG genre. It’s got that isometric camera, a combat system, and most recently you revealed some Fallout-esque dialogue screens. This is the RPG Codex, so we obviously have to get all the details about that. What other RPG-inspired features does the game have? Why did you choose to go in this direction, and which RPGs specifically have you been inspired by?

    Structurally we looked towards 90’s Adventure games and RPGs as a reference for an open world experience but with a structured story. Steering away from the linear adventure game format, we wanted Beautiful Desolation to be a game that could be replayed. In addition, something that would ensure that every player could have a unique playing experience - that they couldn't get from watching someone else play.

    When we chose Character as one of our pillars of the game, it was a natural progression to add in dialogue trees. But how we hoped to change it up – to avoid a regular list of dialogue options that you can return to – was by focusing on a natural conversation flow. Our characters react not only to what you say to them, but how you say it.

    I think there is a lot of room to expand ideas in the adventure game genre. What a great way to tell a story! I’ve enjoyed the world-building the most in this process. I’ve recently begun playing and hosting tabletop games, and to let players loose in these worlds and seeing what they do is so enjoyable. We hope to extend a taste of this with Beautiful Desolation.
    Read the full article: RPG Codex Interview: Chris Bischoff on Beautiful Desolation
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 28
    • incline incline x 3
    • Informative Informative x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  2. Pyke The Brotherhood Developer

    Pyke
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Messages:
    960
    Location:
    South Africa
    Thanks for this!
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 39
    • Salute Salute x 4
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    ^ Top  
  3. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2016
    Messages:
    3,221
    Location:
    Eastern block
  4. lukaszek the determinator

    lukaszek
    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2015
    Messages:
    6,166
    if only that was true for rpgs
     
    • Funny Funny x 10
    ^ Top  
  5. Alpan Prophet Patron

    Alpan
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2018
    Messages:
    980
    Grab the Codex by the pussy
    From the interview:

    Did this happen, and when? What did I miss?
     
    ^ Top  
  6. lukaszek the determinator

    lukaszek
    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2015
    Messages:
    6,166
    which part? :lol:
     
    ^ Top  
  7. Pyke The Brotherhood Developer

    Pyke
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Messages:
    960
    Location:
    South Africa
    :backawayslowly:
     
    • Funny Funny x 6
    ^ Top  
  8. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2011
    Messages:
    81,920
    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    ^ Top  
  9. Alpan Prophet Patron

    Alpan
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2018
    Messages:
    980
    Grab the Codex by the pussy
    There's Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth released in 2017, though I only know about this game because I picked it up recently. I haven't yet played it and don't know how classic it is. It's sad to hear they are having financial troubles.
     
    ^ Top  
  10. mindx2 Codex Roaming East Coast Reporter Patron

    mindx2
    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    3,824
    Location:
    Gazing at his now empty game shelves :-(
    Codex 2012 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech
    Pyke, this was an instant BUY from me (the Deluxe GOG version)! Your artwork itself is just, pardon the pun, BEAUTIFUL!!
     
    • When words are not enough When words are not enough x 1
    ^ Top  
  11. lukaszek the determinator

    lukaszek
    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2015
    Messages:
    6,166
    good enough, im buying!
     
    • incline incline x 3
    ^ Top  
  12. Pyke The Brotherhood Developer

    Pyke
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Messages:
    960
    Location:
    South Africa
    Thanks! I put a lot of work into the art book - it does have some spoilers - but I'd love to hear what you think about it when you get a chance to browse!

    Also, Micks music is phenomenal. It's just... so damned good.
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 3
    ^ Top  
  13. Paul_cz Arcane

    Paul_cz
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2014
    Messages:
    1,526
    This game looks great. Looking forward to reading some impressions. Almost 4 years in dev? Damn.
     
    • Salute Salute x 1
    ^ Top  
  14. Jedi Exile Arcanum Patron

    Jedi Exile
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,079
    Project: Eternity Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Congrats with releasing your game! I'll buy it today and definitely check it out when I've played other games on my list (which were released in previous years lol).
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  15. Iluvcheezcake Savant

    Iluvcheezcake
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2014
    Messages:
    759
    Location:
    Le Balkans
    Bought it. Will check it out pretty soon :)
     
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    ^ Top  
  16. Theodora Nil Learned Patron

    Theodora Nil
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2020
    Messages:
    319
    Location:
    Βυζάντιον
    From what I can see, you're right to be proud of the worldbuilding. :) Looks sweet.
     
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    ^ Top  
  17. jac8awol Educated

    jac8awol
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    This looks good! I'll pick it up as soon as I'm in an adventure mood again (got let Disco wear off a bit). Lol at the negative review on steam complaining about 'fok off' as a dialogue response. Hulle moenie verstaan nie, boet...
     
    ^ Top  
  18. Sin2x Novice

    Sin2x
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Looks like Fallout 3 the way it should have been. Better late than never.
     
    • cuck cuck x 1
    • WTF am I reading WTF am I reading x 1
    ^ Top  
  19. Tao Learned

    Tao
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2015
    Messages:
    227
    I just brought iit, deluxe edition. This weekend ill play it. Congrats for the release
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  20. Nifft Batuff Savant

    Nifft Batuff
    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2018
    Messages:
    769
    You have to put the pointer on the text boxes in order to activate them and read the descriptions, hence you cover the text partially with the pointer when you want to read it. It is annoying.

    (some examples: https://youtu.be/ql7naSOFPNI?t=287 )
     
    ^ Top  
  21. Black Angel Arcane

    Black Angel
    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2016
    Messages:
    2,262
    Location:
    Wonderland
    Ending scene but full, complete, uncensored sequence???!!!!
    :bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce::bounce:
     
    • Excited! Excited! x 2
    • Funny Funny x 1
    ^ Top  
  22. Pyke The Brotherhood Developer

    Pyke
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Messages:
    960
    Location:
    South Africa
    Press SPACE and you can read all the descriptions on screen. Space again closes them.
     
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    ^ Top  
  23. Xzylvador Savant Patron

    Xzylvador
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2015
    Messages:
    359
    Location:
    The rich part of Europe
    Divinity: Original Sin 2 Bubbles In Memoria A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
    Loved STASIS but wasn't really following the devs anymore... Awesome, thanks for this news, I'd have completely missed it.
    Bought myself the BROTHERHOOD DELUXE MEGA BUNDLE despite the godawful name.
     
    • Salute Salute x 1
    ^ Top  
  24. Jedi Exile Arcanum Patron

    Jedi Exile
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,079
    Project: Eternity Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Played the game a bit, it looks great :greatjob:
     
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
    ^ Top  

(buying stuff via the above buttons helps us pay the hosting bills, thanks!)