Kickin’ it with Donn Manalili – You Are Not The Hero
UPDATE: You Are Not The Hero now offers potential backers the option to use Paypal to support the project. You can check this image for an updated rewards chart, and follow this link to their Paypal page to back the project.
Do you ever wonder what NPCs think about when you go into their homes and open up their drawers and treasure chests? Donn Manalili has had that thought cross his mind and founded a kickstarter which asks that very question. This week we’re talking with him about You Are Not The Hero!
4cr: Welcome Donn! Could you please tell our readers a bit about yourself?
Thanks for having me! I’m experienced in a wide variety of fields from web programming and design to traditional art, computer programming and 3D modeling and animation. I’m currently studying to be a 3D animator. I’m not exactly an established game developer, though I have a lot of experience developing this type of game. It’s been a lifelong hobby of mine ever since I first got a hold of an early iteration of RPG Maker over 13 years ago. I’m now in a position to pursue this hobby as a profession, and I’m doing everything I can to achieve it.
4cr: Kickstarter has helped hundreds of projects become a reality, and you decided to create a campaign for your very own project: You Are Not The Hero. What is this game about?
You Are Not The Hero is an action platforming RPG, think of it as mixing Final Fantasy and Zelda. The point of the game is that you don’t play as a cliché hero, whether he rose up from peasantry or promoted through the military. You never get glorified, you don’t get stronger and you don’t really level up. You play a bystander to a large, epic story, unfolding in front of you. You Are Not The Hero is about a girl named Petula who gets dragged into the big picture, when the heroes systematically pillage her house, because that’s what Heroes do in RPGs! They’re entitled to everything they see and they can take what they want, as long as it helps them get to the end and defeat the villain. Anyway, the premise of the story is that they steal a special pendant from her, and she runs after them trying to retrieve it.
4cr: You Are Not The Hero was funded in only 4 days, and with 20 days to go, there is a lot of time left on the clock. What are you working on in order to keep people engaged with the project? Are you thinking about any particular stretch goals if more funds than expected come in?
It’s difficult to keep people engaged in a project, especially during the middle of the campaign when interest is at its lowest. Interest is highest when a campaign kicks off, and when its about to close. We’re trying to engage people with constant updates, backer input and more press of course. We’ve also decided to release a public demo before the campaign ends to drum up some more interest, whether through word of mouth, the press or Youtube. I’m always afraid that people will find the game horrible, but so far people have enjoyed it so I’m positive this will help, if only a little bit.
We do have stretch goals in mind, particularly getting a Mac and Linux port up. After that we want to provide more content within the game. We’ll be adding extra chapters that we wouldn’t be able to release if it was just barely funded. We really want to do these extra chapters because they sound like amazing fun to create and to play.
4cr: Is a port to next gen consoles (Wii U, PS4, XBO) something you’ve considered, or will you focus entirely on having You Are Not The Hero released on PC (and Mac and Linux if the stretch goal for that is reached)?
We want to focus on the PC and other OS ports first before we think about porting to consoles. Of course, consoles ports would be absolutely amazing and if we’re able to do that then we will. it’s a matter of funding, time, and engine capability. At this point, all three of those are questionable.
4cr: How many people will be working on the game?
At the moment we have five members in the development team. Our lead programmer Drew, our musician Darren, our bust artist Mantas, pixel artist Tegan and myself, the lead designer. Technically, I work on the gameplay alone. I tell the artists and musician what to draw and compose and they give it to me to put into the game. I also have Drew work on mechanics, optimizing systems in the game and making sure it plays smoothly. With our first stretch goal funded, I’ll be bringing in an environmental pixel artist to create custom graphics for the game. This isn’t necessary, but there is a small vocal minority that don’t like the graphics simply because it’s from RPG Maker.
4cr: If more stretch goals are reached, will that delay the release for the game since you’d be dealing with having to create more content for You Are Not The Hero?
The stretch goals we’ve released after the Mac and Linux port are subject to our schedule. If we can get them done on time for the release date then they will be done. However, if we can’t get them done on time, then they will be provided as free DLC after the game is released. This gives us a flexible schedule, and we aren’t pressured into compromising the quality of the game just to make sure all of the chapters are packed in.
4cr: Thanks for joining us today. Do you want to add anything else?
I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who have supported us thus far, and I hope you’ll continue to support us by sharing our Kickstarter wherever you can. We’re also on Steam Greenlight, so we could use as many Yes votes as possible. Please look forward to the public demo that we’ll be releasing very soon!
We look forward to playing You Are Not The Hero, and we wish all the best to Donn and his team.