Kickin’ it with Thomas Busse – The Eldritch Cases: Dagon

by Antonio Garcia

Adventure games are having a bit of a resurgence over at Kickstarter, with more and more developers trying to keep the genre going. Today we have an interview with Thomas Buse to talk about his project – The Eldritch Cases: Dagon

4cr: Welcome! Could you please introduce yourself to our readers?

Hi! My name is Thomas, I’m originally from Germany, but live in London now with the wife and cats.

I have worked in IT for most of my professional life in various positions from QA to development, and am also university trained in various aspects of media production, from 3d video and editing to storytelling.

I’m a lifelong fan of all things weird and horror, and Lovecraft’s stories always had a special place in my heart.

4cr: One of our regular readers sent us a link to your Kickstarter project for The Eldritch Cases: Dagon. Would you mind giving us an introduction to the game?

Not at all, that’s my favourite topic!

The Eldritch Cases: Dagon is an adventure game based on the stories of H.P. Lovecraft. I have taken elements from a few stories and added my own ideas to create the story of Dagon. I have used elements from Lovecraft’s tales Dagon, The Shadow over Innsmouth, Herbert West – Reanimator and Horror at Red Hook.

The last two provide two of the three main characters of the game, Dr. Herbert West, the villain of the story, and Detective Thomas Malone, one of the two protagonists. The third one is Rose Babcock, she is my own invention.

West is the head of a sinister group called the Esoteric Order of Dagon in Innsmouth, their goal is to invoke an evil, old deity that lives under the sea in order to take over the world.

Our two heroes have to stop them, but time is running out …

Gameplay-wise, The Eldritch Cases: Dagon is a classic adventure game, the player controls both main actors based on the situation, as both have their own respective skills.

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4cr: Why did you decide on having a £20,000 goal for this campaign?

That was easy: this is the minimum amount of money I need to create the game. This includes the Kickstarter fees, money needed to produce the physical rewards (although this depends of course on the amount of backers for the physical tiers, I have calculated this from the averages of comparable campaigns) and then the money needed to pay the people who help me in those areas that I can’t do on my own (mostly music, animation and translation).

4cr: Point and click games are having a great showing in 2014. Was The Eldritch Cases: Dagon always designed to fit in this category, or has the game morphed during the last year?

No, it was always designed as a point and click adventure, because this is my favorite genre ever since I played Maniac Mansion on my Commodore 64 in the late 80s.

For me there is no better genre when you want to create a game that puts the emphasis on story, dialogues and characters.
And companies like Telltale with The Walking Dead have shown that the genre is still able to innovate and evolve!

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4cr:- PC/Mac/Linux are in the cards once the campaign reaches its funding goal, but have you thought about taking the game to the current generation of consoles?

I’m not sure about consoles yet – adventures don’t do to well there, but what is almost certain is that the game will be ported to iOS and Android as a tablet version. Adventures and tablets are made for each other!

4cr: Will you be the only person working on The Eldritch Cases: Dagon? If so, how do you plan to release the game on May 2015?

No, a part of the money is is planned to pay contractors, for example, a friend of mine who is a professional 3d designer and will help me with modelling and most importantly animations, and then the composer, Jan Kavan, who will do the soundtrack and sound effects. Jan is a classically trained musician and uses predominantly live instruments to create music that is only supported by digital music where necessary, which creates a very special atmosphere. Check out the trailer video for the Kickstarter campaign to get a first glimpse!

4cr: The game will be released in English and German. Are any other languages being considered if the funding goes over the main goal?

Yes, ideally I want to see the game translated to as many languages as possible. I am already in contact with translators for Spanish, Italian and French – however, this depends on the budget of course, so it’s possible that the further translations will be released later.

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4cr: And our time is up. Do you want to add anything else?

Yes, if you back The Eldritch Cases: Dagon on Kickstarter, Cthulhu will destroy your house last. Maybe.

Also, as the title hints, the idea is that there will be further Eldritch Cases – at least if the Kickstarter campaign is successful and people like the game. Thomas and Rose could become the Mulder and Scully of the Lovecraft universe – if that sounds like a good idea to you, please consider backing the campaign :-)

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