I am wildly excited about Dreadline, an upcoming title from indie developer Eerie Canal. The first effort from the studio features a group of rabble rousing, time traveling, monsters. The characters visit the sites of history’s greatest calamities and wreak havoc on the already doomed souls they find. It’s weird, it’s stylish, it’s ridiculous and sort of horrible (in an amazing way) and I can’t believe I didn’t think of it first.
I knew that Eerie Canal was at work on something awesome given that they were founded by some of my exceptionally talented former colleagues. But I had no idea just how perfectly ridiculous their project was until I saw the trailer a few days ago. You can watch it below:
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I caught up with Bryn Bennett and Steven Kimura, the studio’s co-founders to talk more about their new project, going indie, and life in general.
What is Dreadline?Bryn Bennett: It’s a high paced ARPG, where you play the part of monsters who travel through time, killing the people that are going to die anyway. Think of a mix of Diablo, Freedom Force, and Mario Kart, thrown through an indie game filter.
How did you come up with the name Dreadline?Steven Kimura: It came to me in a terrible dream.
Bryn Bennett: We googled it, and I think there might be a terrible hard rock band from North Carolina named Dreadline. We may have to get our people on that.
You mention the Titanic and Pompeii in the trailer, what other disaster sites might the monsters visit?BB: There are so many options! Humans are really an unlucky bunch. The Boston Molasses Disaster?
I really hope the Molasses disaster is in there.SK: Not the World Trade Center. Please stop asking about that people.
Why monsters, why not cuddly bunnies?SK: Ghost is a cuddly monster. In the tumultuous wake of the global financial meltdown, we all have to find ways to economize wherever we can.
BB: We did have a bug once where the monsters were rendered really small. Little mummy was the cutest thing ever. We started thinking about moving the game to a more “Muppet Babies” theme.
What platforms will Dreadline be available on?BB: For right now, PC only. The engine does work on Xbox, but it is tougher to get onto consoles. We are going to release on PC first, and then look at our options. We definitely won’t port it to another platform unless we can find a control scheme that would make sense.
How and when did you decide to form your own studio?BB: I think it happened at the Middle East (a bar) after our 17th shot of whiskey. I also think we planned on running for congress at that point, but I don’t remember. We just both knew that we had a lot of ideas that we probably couldn’t work on at our current positions. Creating an indie game studio was the obvious choice!
What have been the biggest challenges for you all as you went indie?SK: We’re completely broke.
BB: I like to think of it as being a starving artist… really sacrificing for our love of games. I also can’t blame any other programmers when the game doesn’t work.
What advice do you have for other indie game makers?BB: I don’t know if we’re in a good position to answer that, since we are really just starting. There are a number of Boston indie companies like Dejobaan who are much more likely to give a useful answer.
SK: I can say that I love the idea of making indie games, and that people should be as creative as possible since that’s not always possible when working for a larger studio/publisher.
When can we get our hands on the demo?BB: We plan on being done in early 2013, so we’ll probably start asking people to help us test in late 2012.
Does Frankenstein have a cameo anywhere in the story? (Please say yes).SK: Dr. Victor Frankenstein, the Modern Prometheus?
BB: (Steve reads a lot.)
I should have clarified, “Frankenstein’s monster.” Sorry Steve.Anything else we should know?BB: We’re just crazy excited to get this game out there! Indie development is awesome, and we’re so pumped to be where we are right now. Please check us out at http://www.eerie-canal.com as well as http://www.facebook.com/EerieCanalGames and https://twitter.com/eeriecanalgames
So there you have it. Any other questions for the Eerie Canal crew? Post them in the comments below.