Interview: Dive into Melvor Idle with its creator, Brendan Malcolm
Are you a fan of RuneScape But don’t have enough time to devote to content and skills? Wish your progress would continue while you work long shifts or take a nap? Keep reading because we think you’ll enjoy it. Melvor Idle is a brand new, casual, indie adventure game that emulates some of the best parts of skill in RuneScape, so much so that Jagex personally reached out to suggest publishing it. We sat down this week with Brendan Malcolm to talk about Melvor Idle, his inspirations and how he teamed up with Jagex to make this indie idler hit.
MMORPG.com: You are the founder of Malcs Studio Games and Melvor IdleYour own development in 2018?
Brendan Malcolm, The Malcs Founder’s Game: It’s correct! I am the founder of Malcs Games and for a long time the solo developer behind Melvor Idle. It’s an idea I’ve been challenging for a while, but really focused on Melvor just started in 2019 and it only became my full-time focus last year.
MMORPG.com: Do you already have a background in game development or is this a whole new adventure for you?
BM: During game development, Mevlor Idle is my first public project and I’m a completely self-taught programmer. It was only in 2019 that I dropped out of my university cybersecurity course to focus entirely on development Mevlor Idle. I realized that I had to choose between continuing my studies or focusing on what I would eventually become Melvor Idle. It was certainly a scary idea at the time, but it certainly worked for the best!
MMORPG.com: What’s the hardest part about developing Melvor Idle myself? What kept you going when things started to get harder?
BM: The hardest part is what is common to most game developers, who are trying to work around a regular job – time management. Working 9-10 hours and going home to develop a game with no guarantee of success is very hard! Looking back, a lot of time wasn’t even spent on “developing” the game, but more on the connective tissue, such as the business side of things. In the early days, getting involved with the community could mean eating in the small hours of the morning, replying to direct messages and sharing insights, etc. But looking back, I see that engagement was also what keeps me going and allows me to go back Melvor success.
MMORPG.com: Now on the other hand, what is the easiest part when developing Melvor Idle? What comes naturally?
BM: This is always a harder question! But I have to say that was when I had to really focus on the design and direction of the game. I’ve had a lot of experience over the past few years figuring out what’s right for me Melvor as an idle game and what the community wants to see from it as an evolving live game. In fact, being involved in the area and making it happen is what I enjoy most. Both with planning future features and arranging their implementation.
MMORPG.com: What games were you inspired by?
BM: Obviously RuneScape is the biggest one. I like to think Melvor Idle receive RuneScapecore gameplay mechanics of the game and condensing them into small moments in a way that players can enjoy even when time is tight. As for the world-building aspect, Elder Scrolls the series is definitely influential, along with Diablo. Before starting work Melvor I have been through games such as Clicker Hero, Cookie Clicker, Idle Idle and lots of other idle games. While I really enjoy them and appreciate the huge amount of work that goes into them, I feel like there’s more room to explore in the Idle genre of games.
MMORPG.com: Congratulations on being published by Jagex, unbelievable! Can you tell me a little bit about who was contacted and how successful this partnership was?
BM: Apparently Jagex first found out Melvor Idle when one of its groups flags internal. It’s obvious to anyone who’s played both games just how much Melvor in debt Runescape As an inspiration, its DNA is connected throughout the entire experience.
When Jagex Partners actually looked at the game, they realized how much they’d accomplished in a short amount of time, and it fits the bill. RuneScape. The team reached out to me through Reddit and then Discord to discuss the possibility of working together, and we found that we aligned very well with our core values and what we thought made up. a good game. The rest, as they say, is history. It was a natural fit to decide to work together and we both really liked the idea of someone from RuneScape The community is helped to make the best possible game they can, with the support of Jagex.
MMORPG.com: Name Melvor Idle… I get the “Idle” part, but where does “Melvor” come from? Is “Melvor” a reference to a character in the game or the name of the world we are playing in?
BM: Honestly, there is no story behind the name Melvor! Back when I started making games, Melvor was just a name that popped into my head full of fantasy RPG titles.
MMORPG.com: Since we mostly deal with text, will there be any base story for our legendary hounds, or is it just about that sweet, sweet serotonin hit?
BM: Legend of Melvor Idle is really high on my to-do list and I really plan on hiring a full-time writer to help codify it before implementing it into the game. The game contains some Lore acquired through the use of Books which you can obtain after defeating some of the hardest Dungeons. These Books establish the foundation of Melvor universe that I plan to expand a lot in the upcoming Expansions.
There are hints of it in many places, too, with some item descriptions and flavor text in places, but what’s missing is the overarching world-building present in games like RuneScape That’s the key to inspiration Melvor Idle. Definitely watch this space, I think that’s what Melvor Idle community will really enjoy.
I noticed that there is an extremely intensive combat system! Does this also include magic, or do we mainly focus on melee and physical combat?
The Battle System now includes Melee Combat, Rangers and Magic for you to explore! You’ll use all three types of Combat multiple times during your gameplay.
How did you go about tackling the combat system, and what are some of the challenges you face when trying to achieve a satisfying combat experience for players?
I’m glad you asked about the battle system! For what I feel the longest, that’s my priority list for improvement, but it’s a huge task. That’s actually what led to me hiring my first employee at Games By Malcs, a programmer from the community who can focus specifically on the combat system. This is an important part of the Alpha v0.21 update, and the ability to hire more people in the future opens up a world of possibilities for similar updates.
MMORPG.com: I can’t tell you how exciting it feels to see that there won’t be any microtransactions. Not only have we gotten a level playing field, but you’ve also said there will be monthly content updates as well as upcoming expansions in the future. Can we expect the expansions to be free for players as well or will this be the main way we can show ongoing financial support for the game?
BM: While we’re focusing on this patch right now, we’re working on some major content updates that will be available for purchase later next year. We look forward to talking in more detail on these as we get closer to their release.
Now for some interesting questions!
MMORPG.com: Stop squeezing, there are more than 40 pets in Melvor Idle? Which is your favorite, and why the otter? Please tell me there is an otter.
BM: By far Chio is my favorite Pet in the game (And I also assume the most popular Pet)! I think the community has developed this relationship with Chio that is unmatched in other similar games. Chio looks like an otter, but in reality Chio is a Cat who has eaten too much junk food!
MMORPG.com: The first thing that drew you in Runescape, and when did you start playing?
BM: Like most people, I started playing RuneScape because most of my friends at that time were playing it. In fact RuneScape being a browser based game is a huge part of this, that low barrier to entry combined with RuneScape’s the depth and complexity of branching is what kept me coming back to it for a long time – it’s something that I want to replicate Melvor Idle.
MMORPG.com: Do you like Old School RuneScape or RuneScape?
BM: I love Old School RuneScape. This is mainly due to the nostalgia it gave me when I first started playing RuneScape in 2006. Most of my inspiration for Melvor Idle actually coming from OSRS.
MMORPG.com: I just got my first skill recently, and it’s… fire making. It’s not the coolest thing I’ll admit, but you can tell a lot about someone by what they chose as their first coat. What was your first skillscape?
BM: My first skillscape was really the same in Melvor Idle like it was in Old School RuneScape. I don’t know what made me finish that Skill first, but it always seems to take precedence over every other Skill. Probably because it’s one of the most Idle Skills of the two Melvor and OSRS? Or I have an unknown love for Skills that I haven’t discovered yet.
MMORPG.com: Do you have a favorite quest or particular story that sticks in your mind?
BM: Not necessarily, no. I will be honest and tell the inner mission OSRS is something I ignored. I’ve been more involved in the general skill advancement the game offers. This kind of personal preference can be seen throughout the design process of Melvor Idle where there are currently no Tasks and the sole focus is on that aspect of progress OSRS provided.
MMORPG.com: Which god do you fly banners?
BM: Definitely Aeris. It was the first God I planned and by far my favorite.
Once again a big thank you to you and once again congratulations to Brendan Malcolm for sitting down to share his thoughts and feelings with us about Melvor Idle! Stay tuned for our next interview with Chris Pfeiffer, Product Management Manager at Jagex Partners, as we’ll learn a little more about his position in the company and the potential they see. Melvor Idle.
https://www.mmorpg.com/interviews/interview-digging-deep-into-melvor-idle-with-its-creator-brendan-malcolm-2000123838 Interview: Dive into Melvor Idle with its creator, Brendan Malcolm