Wadjet Eye Games Community Forum

Wadjet Eye Games => Chit Chat! => Topic started by: fathamburger on April 23, 2007, 09:02:05 PM

Title: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: fathamburger on April 23, 2007, 09:02:05 PM

You're now one of my new personal heroes :) The writing is very engaging in your games and here's hoping you can keep the quality up! I've got some questions for you.

* Are you doing this full time? or doing it in your spare time after work?

* Blackwell was great and my main draw and favourite, however Shivah actually turned out to be quite good as well and I would love to see a sequel, especially with some synagogue poltics lke you've mentioned elsewhere. I also got to learn something about Jewish culture at the same time which before this, I knew nothing about :) My question is, did you delibrately price it at $5 to get the traditional gamer over the hump of the Jewish/rabbi motif?

You have a lifetime fan here now :)
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: DaveGilbert on April 23, 2007, 11:44:10 PM
Hi fathamburger!  Awesome name.

Yep, I'm doing this full time.  I was living off savings initially, and things are progressing well enough that I can live well enough if I live like Ghandi.  Well, not THAT bad, but i'm certainly a lot poorer than I used to be.  Still, it's nice to sort of make a living doing what I like, and letters like yours make it all worth it.

The $5 price tag was due to mostly three factors. 

1 - the game was originally free. 
2 - the game is quite short. 
3 - the game was more of an experiment for me in terms of marketing and selling.

My original intention was for Shivah to be "practice" for Blackwell, but I wasn't prepared for how popular it wouild eventually be.  I'm glad you liked both! :)
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: fathamburger on April 24, 2007, 04:19:23 AM
Heh yeah, it's pretty much guaranteed that I'll get that name vs lonewolfkillah1246@hotmail.com :)

I'm really curious as to how Shivah is doing for ya. I agree with Greg Costikyan in that $5 is too low (but I bet he's only say that since he gets a smaller cut ;)  ) but at the same time I felt a little "zinged" when Blackwell ended so abruptly. This is a bit of a compliment for you too, since up to that point I really felt like I was playing one of those old school Lucasarts games, or their competition i.e. Flight of the Amazon Queen. Tthe quality was up there, so when it ended so quickly it was a rude awakening back down to Earth as in "oh yeah DOH, this *is* still a low budget indie I forgot" :)  Buying both at the same time sort of evened things out.

While I'm at it, a few more things. I remember seeing a mention from you somewhere about how much fun Abe Goldfarb was to work with but I felt the character of Joey in Blackwell was really flat in the performance. Frankly he came off as more of a simple asshole than the damaged/wounded soul of the noir PI archetype. There's something missing there and I think it has more to do with the way that character is written, hard boiled usually means bitter and damaged but there is still some good and decency trapped underneath all that cynicism which doesn't really come across in Joey. Especially towards the end when he seems like hes just being an asshole for fun, I didn't see how Rosangela could stand him afterwards if you take the "let Joey handle it" route. Anyhow, this is my only thing about Blackwell but it seems that the VA is mismatched for the role of Joey.. or maybe Joey lightens up a bit in episode 2 and Abe gets to show off that fun side a bit more.. or maybe Joey is meant to be an asshole :) You're the only one who knows lol.

Now Shivah on the other hand, really liked the computer related puzzles, lots of fun involving trying to come up with logins and who to look up from intiials etc. I think I especially liked it because it wasn't all hotspot related instantly telling you what was relevant or not and you actually had to process/decipher what you saw. I also liked Rabbi Stone in general and how you wrote his character, giving him common traits that anyone can identify with i.e. being broke, his jealous response to Zelig's flashy syngogue stuff. It made him a lot more human and  basically took care of any concern that I'd get this game and be overwhelmed with all the Jewish/rabbi stuff in the same way as the stereotypical American visits a foreign country and complains that it's all... "so foreign" :) This was the perfect introduction imo. I was afraid of the possible sermonizing pitfall here but thankfully you avoided that nicely. Actually I think this should be a selling point :D
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: DaveGilbert on April 24, 2007, 08:11:15 AM
The length is the common complaint about BL, and it's being addressed in the second episode.  It's at least twice as long as the first, with many more locations and characters and even a different time period to visit.  It's just started production so there's nothing to show quite yet, but look for an "official" announcement in a few weeks.
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: fathamburger on April 26, 2007, 02:13:30 PM
Just be careful to fall into the "must be bigger and better" trap, especially if it compromises quality, adds padding or in adventure gaming's case, puzzles that involve a lot of travelling and additional backtracking. Please keep going at your own pace :)

oh and no mazes and sliding puzzles (especially for door entry) just for the sake of a longer game please!
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: rma2110 on June 12, 2007, 10:36:52 AM
Just wanted to add my thanks for two amazing games! I loved them both, but I prefer The Shivah. I've always loved stories that deal with faith and moral delimas. Very hard subject to deal with and even harder to get it right.

The story and puzzles in both games are wonderful. You had me scrathing my head plenty of times. The characters were amazing and so was the voice acting. Rabbi Stone, Roseangela, and especialy Joey are people I wouldn't mind spending time with amazing.

The voice actors are a wonderful bunch and do a fabulous job. I even liked the graphics. As a long time fan of adventure games from Sierra and Lucasarts, the graphics make me nostalic :)

Anyway, I though both games were worth every penny. Looking forward to Blackwell Unbound.
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: DaveGilbert on June 13, 2007, 08:11:48 AM
Thanks, RMA.  I'm glad you enjoyed it!
Title: Re: Hiya, thanks for both Blackwell and Shivah
Post by: sierramindy on August 24, 2007, 01:54:31 AM
I just finished The Shivah and I must say it was so much more than I expected. Since I had already played The Blackwell Legacy, and liked it very much, I thought I would take a chance on a game about a rabbi although I couldn't imagine how it would work. I had read some rave reviews, but I don't take such things seriously. I know what I like and I make up my own mind. Sometimes I agree, sometimes not. In this case I totally agree and now I find myself hoping that there will be a sequel. Or a prequel, whatever! So, Dave, add my thanks to all the rest for two really great games!