The Game Bakers who make games like they cook food, “Just out of the oven, warm and delicious”, have created Squids Odyssey. “An epic adventure featuring squids characters teaming up against the hordes of the black torrent”, is how they describe this creation which according to them is the most polished and feature rich game of the whole Squids series.
We got in touch with Emeric Thoa, Creative Director, The Game Bakers to talk about the third installment in the Squids series: Squids Odyssey. Apart from the game we also got a quick peek into the exciting world of how The Game Bakers work.
Read on to know more about this Tactical Turned-Based Tactical Action RPG and their Makers in an exclusive interview with Gamepur:
Gamepur: First and foremost, tell us about The Game Bakers, about your team, what is the story?
Emeric: “Audrey and I created The Game Bakers in 2010. We both had worked a few years on big console games at Ubisoft, but we wanted to work on smaller projects and to get away from the military shooters. After too many years of Clancy games you need a break of colorful octopus in the warm oceans! The rise of mobile gaming was perfect for us, we were able to make our games with smaller budgets.”
Gamepur: Give us an insight of Squids Odyssey, what is it about?
Emeric: “Squids Odyssey is an epic adventure featuring squids characters teaming up against the hordes of the black torrent, a disaster that corrupter all the crabs and shrimps of the oceans. Think about Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, but with Squids instead of Jedis and Crabs instead of Orcs! More seriously, we wanted a fun and cheerful and warm game, but we also wanted the story to be epic and the stakes high.”
Gamepur: We have heard that Squids Odyssey is a unique mix of action strategy and RPG, which is more? RPG or strategy?
Emeric: “Well it’s actually even more a mix than that, it’s a Tactical Turned-Based Tactical Action RPG. It’s a turn-based game where you control up to 4 squids in your team, you characters level up and equip helmets (RPG), you need actual skill to play the game, because you aim and throw your characters on the enemies (Action) and you need a lot of strategy during the battles, to choose who to attack, where to place your Squids or how to use the environment (Tactical). It’s the game I always wanted to make!”
Gamepur: What inspired you to make Squids Odyssey?
Emeric: “For the gameplay, two games I loved when I was a kid inspired me a lot: Shining Force for the tactical turn-based gameplay and Canon Fodder for the team-based action. A lot of good diners with nice food and wine gave us the inspiration for the rest of the world!”
Gamepur: We build a team of Squids, but how we do play? As a team or as one of the characters in a team? Or lead?
Emeric: “You start with few Squids but you can recruit a lot of them along the story. Each one of them have different characteristics and abilities. There are four classes, but some Squids are more mobile, some other tough, others stronger… Most of the time you have up to four Squids to control, and you play them one by one, then it’s the enemy’s turn. But some missions will have you play one Squid in solo!”
Gamepur: How many levels and characters will Squids Odyssey have? Also how long is the gameplay?
Emeric: “Squids Odyssey has over 15 playable Squids, over 60 helmets to collect and more than 90 missions… without counting the Pro mode with lets you play harder missions for a better tactical challenge. If you just want to complete the story, you can probably finish the game within 8 hours, but if you want to unlock everything, it’s for sure more than 20 hours of gameplay.”
Gamepur: Who is your personal favorite?
Emeric: “I have so many! My favorite character is Sammo because he is so funny. But for gameplay, my favorite character is the secret Scout Kapono. He can have up to 11 dashes! He is great to play with especially on 3DS and WiiU with the stick controls.”
Gamepur: Squids Odyssey, sounds quite addictive, are all the levels designed uniquely? Does difficulty level increase with each one?
Emeric: “Each level (even for the pro mode) is designed uniquely, by the hand of a level designer (me or one of my colleagues). We choose very carefully where to place the enemies so that the missions offer a different tactical challenge. The difficulty increases with the level design, but the enemies also get stronger through the campaign.”
Gamepur: How long did it take to create Squids Odyssey?
Emeric: “Well Squids Odyssey is the best of Squids and its sequel Squids Wild West, with additional content (a new chapter, a new Squid, new helmets…). But we started working on Squids in 2010 and if we remove one year for another game, it’s almost 3 years of work! Just the last part for the Nintendo consoles took almost a year!”
Gamepur: Why did it take a year to complete it on the Nintendo consoles?
Emeric: “The Nintendo versions are the most polished of all versions, they are not just simple ports. First, we supported all the controls pad controls in addition to the touch. In the game and in the menus. We also supported the full Gamepad mode on the WiiU. The 3DS also has different specifications than the mobile phones, that needed specific code. We also had to deal with the 3D on 3DS, and add all the 3D information in the levels. Then there is all the new content: new chapter, story, missions, helmets. And 40 new pro-mode missions! Finally, all the testing and polish had to be redone on a game 4 time bigger than the first ones, and for 2 different platforms. Here you go: a year of work!”
Gamepur: Will Squids Odyssey support Wii U Gamepad and other unique features?
Emeric: “Squids Odyssey is playable fully with the pad, or fully with the stylus. Or you can mix both. It’s really designed for both controls! For the WiiU we also added the possibility to play fully on the TV or fully on the Gamepad. It really is a great game for the WiiU.”
Gamepur: As developers what do you guys have to say about Wii U and its power as compared to PS4 / Xbox One?
Emeric: “I have never looked at a console with its power in mind. Would Mario be better on PS4 with more power? Would Squids be better on Xbox One with more power? Squids is better on Nintendo because of the WiiU and 3DS touch screens and because Nintendo players are a better fit with our game.”
Gamepur: Can we expect Squids Odyssey to release on other platforms in future? Like PS4, Xbox One and PC? Any plans?
Emeric: “No plans yet but we would love to release the game on other platforms. The PS vita makes a lot of sense actually, but Nintendo was the first choice.”
Gamepur: Coming back to The Game Bakers, who thought of this unique title? Any funny incident you want to share with us?
Emeric: “We thought of it with Audrey my partner. We both love food and cooking and we thought that we want to make games like we make food. With a lot of love and attention to detail. And then serve our games to our players like little breads coming out of the oven, warm and delicious.”
Gamepur: How will you describe your journey with The Game Bakers?
Emeric: “I’m learning new things everyday. Working in a small team makes everything go faster than in a big company… So far I couldn’t do anything else than working at The Game Bakers!”
Gamepur: Any message for our readers?
Emeric: “If anyone of them liked Squids on mobile, they must try it on Nintendo as well! The controls with the pad and buttons really add some new flavor to the game. You can control a Scout while dashing and that’s really fun!”