Twelve Minutes is simply a type of video games that stick to you and preserve you fascinated with what you simply skilled after the credit have rolled. So naturally, we simply needed to delve deeper and discover out extra concerning the inspiration for the sport’s core design selections and growth course of. Not lengthy after its launch, I received the prospect to interview the creator of the sport, Luis Antonio, who was sort sufficient to offer detailed solutions to our questions.
You may take a look at our review of Twelve Minutes to search out out what this time loop thriller is all about.
PCI: Why did you select 12 minutes because the time accessible in every loop? Was it extra of a sport design alternative or was there an inventive factor to it as nicely?
Antonio: It was purely a sport design alternative. In 2015, I used to be going to preview the sport at PAX East and wanted to present the sport a title. As a substitute of choosing a very sophisticated title like “Conundrum”, I simply considered how lengthy every loop was. On the time, it was round 11 minutes, however twelve minutes simply sounded higher and was extra symbolic.
PCI: The place did the thought of utilizing accrued information as a important idea for the sport originate from?
Antonio: I feel it was simply one thing I needed to mess around with. Video games already do it naturally the place you play a degree, die, after which restart. However your character isn’t conscious and it doesn’t construct as much as something. I simply at all times needed to discover this idea and make a story the place there isn’t any failed state. You by no means actually lose the sport on this case.
PCI: Twelve Minutes has been in growth for a few years, was it tough to carry the sport to fruition as an indie developer?
Antonio: The precise growth time was six years however there weren’t many difficulties. I similar to to take my time and I get pleasure from sport growth. There was no actual rush as money and time weren’t variables I needed to fear about. So, I simply tried to keep away from crunch and resolve the artistic and design challenges forward of me.
PCI: The sport initially had a considerably bigger scale and scope, was chopping again on sure points just like the playable space a tricky determination to make?
Antonio: Truly, it was fairly the alternative. The extra choices I gave the player, the extra complicated it was. Very early on [in development] you can drag our bodies round and you can make much more combos utilizing the gadgets accessible. This tended to mislead gamers at occasions and result in lifeless ends, so eradicating issues from the sport was a welcome alternative. Each time I had the chance to take away one thing, I’d be completely happy to take action. This allowed extra necessary objects to face out extra.
PCI: Not like most different video games, Twelve Minutes doesn’t have particular targets or clearly outlined steps as a way to progress. What made you determine on throwing gamers in the course of a time loop and letting them uncover issues all on their very own?
Antonio: I felt early on if this can be a sport about information, I needed to be very cautious with what data I current to the player. That’s why you don’t have the names of the characters, you don’t know what day it’s and the clock doesn’t even have an hour hand. Some targets are fairly apparent, like stopping the person who breaks into your house on a regular basis. I simply felt it could be extra fascinating for the gamers to course of issues on their very own. It additionally feels richer and extra rewarding if the sport flows nicely. In most time loop motion pictures there’s at all times the correct and improper option to do issues. Nonetheless, on this sport, you could be very lovable or very violent. This opens up extra choices for gamers whereas permitting them to additionally query their very own actions.
PCI: Twelve Minutes includes a star-studded forged of voice actors together with James McAvoy, Daisy Ridley, and Willem Dafoe. Are you able to briefly recount how that got here to be?
Antonio: I initially didn’t plan to have voice actors because it was lots of work. The plan was simply to have dialogue balloons as an alternative. However once I began working with Annapurna, we felt that the expertise could be extra intimate and extra cinematic if we added voice performing. So, we employed native actors to play the voices to try it out, and issues went very well. From there, we reached out to gifted Hollywood actors who might make this extra of a movie-like expertise. They appreciated the story, the script and all of it simply occurred.
PCI: Twelve Minutes is impressed by iconic movies, equivalent to The Shining, and performs extra like an interactive film than a sport. With that being mentioned, how had been you continue to in a position to preserve the online game essence within the sport?
Antonio: My objective was to focus primarily on gameplay and design to discover accrued information. What attracted me extra [to the movie-like experience] was the player’s interpretation of the characters and peeling again the layers to disclose who they honestly are. That’s when the sport began to go in direction of this style and I started thriller motion pictures equivalent to Rear Window by Alfred Hitchcock to assist develop this venture.
PCI: What made you select the top-down perspective?
Antonio: At first, I used to be nonetheless studying to program and so working with solely two axes of motion made issues straightforward. However then, it additionally made the sport very accessible and gave it a novel look. It labored very nicely and we had been in a position to keep away from going by the difficulty of designing facial animations and utilizing totally different digicam angles. Total, the explanations to maintain the top-down perspective had been higher than the explanations to take away it.
PCI: Is there something you might be contemplating including to Twelve Minutes in future updates?
Antonio: Sure, we’ve already began implementing some small fixes into the sport. For instance, many gamers had been getting caught at factors the place they’d the data wanted to progress by the sport however didn’t talk it to the characters. This has brought about some confusion and we’re ensuring the actions required to unlock sure eventualities aren’t as particular. These fixes will assist you to transfer ahead within the sport, so long as you’re on the proper path and have the correct thought.
We’d wish to thank Luis Antonio for his time and his considerate solutions. For those who haven’t already, it’s also possible to take a look at Twelve Minutes on Steam.
Word: This interview was edited for readability.
https://www.pcinvasion.com/twelve-minutes-interview-development-design-choices/ | Twelve Minutes creator Luis Antonio talks design selections and growth