A student with a passion for game development and all things Japan.
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So today I'm doing something very different, but at the same time, it is an evolution of an Idea that I have had for a while. For those that don't know, I wanted to start a podcast that would look at people and their gaming interests, as I thought it would be good to know people as people, and not some big star on the internet. However, I felt there was not enough interest in the idea in terms of people wanting to interviewed. However, I decided to use the questions I had come up with(and a few more related to that person) to interview Jupiter Hadley.
She does a lot of indie game work, including an Indie Games Podcast and looking at game jams. She even looked at my game in the Big Festive Jam, and while I'm thankful, I also am a bit embarrassed. If you read my devlog about the Big Festive Jam you know why I have those feelings. Anyways, you can check it out below(along with all the other games from that Jam!).
What was your first game? Do you have any fond memories of it?
The first game I remember playing is the Legend of Zelda on the NES. My dad paints houses for a living - something that you mainly do in the summertime. In winter, I remember him plugging the old NES into his TV in his room. My sister and I would sit on his bed, watching him take on the entire game. My dad knew where all the hearts were - all of the objects. He would beast throughout the entire map. We would normally be handed unplugged controllers. When I was a bit older, I remember getting to take on ‘the castles’ in the game. These were the temples where the bosses where.
There were other games I played around that age - we had a PlayStation and I remember playing Centipede, Frogger, Mortal Kombat, racing games and more - but they weren’t the games my dad had played. It seemed much more significant getting to play Legend of Zelda.
When I was a bit older, I started playing the Sims 1 on PS1. I have lots of fun memories of playing Sims 1 and Sims Bustin Out - especially Bustin’ Out, with my friends.
When was you first exposure to the wider gaming community (when you looked more into other games that you were not into at first)?
Well, that all starts with Minecraft. I started playing Minecraft as my brother had played it. The server he played on had an active gaming community that played League of Legends and World of Warcraft. I ended up playing League of Legends but didn’t really enjoy it. I was also introduced to some indie game developers, who introduced me to the community around making your own games.
I didn’t really look into a wider gaming community - they sort of found me.
What was the first game you truly fell in love with?
This is a complicated question. I sort of divide my gaming life into “before indie games” and “after indie games.” I really loved Cooking Mama on the Nintendo DS but I never had my own DS so I always had to borrow it off my sister. I really enjoyed cooking all of the strange things within the game. There was also a fashion game I would play on her DS where you could run a clothing shop and go to fashion shows that I was really fond of. I remember being very sad when my data got deleted.
The first indie game I fell head over heels for was Fran Bow. I would say, Fran Bow is my deeper, more passionate love. I backed the game when it was on Indiegogo - I watched the developers make it and I followed the entire process. I felt like they were making a game for me, you know? And when it was released, it was more than I ever expected or could hope for. Fran Bow is a game that years later, I still get passionate talking about. It’s a game I actively recommend to people. A game I feel deeply in love with.
Which game jam did you first do a video on, and your top 3 games from that Game Jam?
The first game jam I ever covered was the Ludum Dare 28 back in 2013. I can’t really pick favorites from that jam - most of the games don’t exist anymore and I only played 220 of them. And, it was so freaking long ago….
Least Favourite game jam, and the worst 3 games from that jam?
This is another complex question that I can only half answer. My least favourite game jams are the ones that don’t have any entries. It makes me sad when no one (or barely anyone) enters a game jam that someone set up. My least favorite games entered into jams are ones that don’t follow the theme or spirit of the jam and are spammed into any jam going on at the time of release. Thats just a bad thing to do.
What was your favourite Game Jam(s), and name the best game and the worst game from that jam?
I love ProcJam - the Procedurally generation jam with games and other things entered into it. I wrote an article on ALL of my favorite creations, but my favorite game from it would be Herbarium - a procgen game about finding the uses and abilities for flowers so you can make various potions!
I also love the GM48 - which is a quarterly game jam using the Game Maker Engine. The themes for that jam are always awesome. The last one I covered - GM48: One Tool, Many Uses - my favorite game was Ghost Snap where you can take pictures of ghosts in a cute dungeon!
The Adventure Jam and many, many smaller jams like the Familiar Game Jam are also wonderful. So many great jams.
What makes you prefer indie games over AAA ones?
I really love the community around indie games. I love how kind, helpful, and caring the individuals are. It's a bunch of people just trying to live their dreams. As for the games themselves, I love the uniqueness that comes from indie games. I get to play things I have never seen or dreamt of before. It’s not like all of the pew-pew gun games you see in AAA - it's more like these little unique projects about rice cookers coming to life, subliminal messages through TV Channels, a small game about comforting a friend, or the pure joy of becoming a baby bird. What’s not to love?
Do you think Indie Developers will have to adopt certain AAA practices, DLC, Lootboxes etc.?
Hmmm, I think that some developers will adopt those practices, especially as more and more indies are coming from an AAA background. DLC is already something I am seeing pop up in various indie games - most recently, SnoutUp made a DLC for his free game, which has nearly paid for itself (for the cost of the DLC). I think that as indie games become bigger and more polished, you will see less and less of a difference when it comes to how they make money.
Where do you see the indie game industry 10 years from now?
I hope to see more solidified game jams, instead of loads of little ones. I hope to continue to see all of the unique games that are being made. I want to see more funding for them - more funding for creative projects, and less guns. I want to see more games that are fun or are made about the world that we currently live in (two very different types of games I know). I hope that there won’t be so much engine talk (X engine is better than Y or You’re not a real game dev if you use Y engine).
Why do you think people should make games?
I feel that people should make games because they want to make games. It’s that simple. Make the games you want to play, share a bit of your soul with the world, create something and let others see it.
One of the things I found intresting and I thought was the community point, because if you look on itch.io and Gamejolt there is a TON of just random games. And I do think that engine talk needs to go away.
Anyway, Jupier, thanks for answering these question. And to the rest of you, thanks for reading, have a great day/night, share if you enjoyed it and take care.
Written By Nana Marfo
Check Out Jupiter Hadley:
SoundCloud: Jupiter Hadley