Review Fix chats with Dakota J. Caler, creator of Adelaide: Tales of Gaia, to find out what inspired this awesome upcoming retro RPG.
Review Fix: Who did you get involved in gaming?
Dakota J. Caler: I first got involved in gaming from my older brother. I received every old console when my brother got a new one so he definitely influenced early gaming for me.
Review Fix: What are your fondest childhood gaming memories?
Caler: My fondest childhood gaming memories, definitely playing on the Sega Genesis with my brother. Games like Sonic, Streets of Rage, Golden Axe, Mortal Kombat, and Super Hang-On defined gaming during my childhood.
Review Fix: Retro gaming console of choice? Why?
Caler: The NES is my retro gaming console of choice. The hardware was so simple and couldn’t do much at all but so many amazing games pushed it to the limits of that and inspired several generations of gamers and developers including myself.
Review Fix: What inspired this game?
Caler: Adelaide was inspired by an admiration to RPGs like Final Fantasy, Lunar: Eternal Blue, and Earthbound as well as Adventure games like The Legend of Zelda. Anime like Dragonball and Sailor moon also inspired many aspects of the game. Overall the project is inspired by my favorite band Coheed and Cambria, Vocalist Claudio Sanchez wrote his story and adapted it into his concept band. I wanted to do the same with my story and artistic ideas but adapt them into a video game instead.
Review Fix: Why do you think games 16-Bit RPGs are still so beloved?
Caler: Simply nostalgia, a lot of people grew up playing enix or square soft games on their snes and the next generation once again when the Gameboy Advanced game out, further extending the 16 bit generation. Plus, pixel art ages really well when done right.
Review Fix: What does this game make the genre it’s in better?
Caler: Adelaide pushes the limits of the turn based RPG genre by adding real time adventure and more advanced puzzle solving elements to the a genre built mostly around a battle system. These elements make the player feel more attached to the world and the story. Rather than just trying to get past the next level the player will want to see and experience every aspect of the story as they progress.
Review Fix: What was development like?
Caler: Development was and still is full of new exciting experiences. From creating the engine itself to developing all of the unique functions that Adelaide required, every step was an opportunity to learn and experiment. Getting to meet so many new people and discuss things has also been an exciting experience as well. Working on Adelaide required setting up a vast network of people to discuss features or even request jobs such as graphics, music, and story writing. Development of Adelaide for the most part has been smooth though.
Review Fix: How did this game change during development?
Caler: Adelaide was supposed to be styled with graphics and colors from the Atari 2600 and feature a totally different story as well as have a Zelda like top down adventure style. As development started the graphics changed to that of a Gameboy then the NES then finally resting on a custom style that could be considered somewhere between the NES and the SNES. The Adventure genre was not thrown out but instead combined with the turn based RPG genre, later more advanced puzzle solving elements were added to separate the style of this game from similar games like Chronotrigger. The story changed drastically as well, throwing out the original concept to build a new story tuned more for an RPG.
Review Fix: What did you learn about yourself through this game?
Caler: I learned that I had a lot of pride and was stubborn through this project. Having to break those things and realize that developing outside of environments like Unreal or Unity was much different and that I didn’t know how to program as well as I originally thought. I also had to come to the realization that I’m one person and could not make everything for this game on my own. I discovered however that I was quick at learning how to program in other languages without APIs and that I had talent in creating pixel art. So I learned a few things about myself and learned how to overcome some of those things that hindered the progress of Adelaide.
Review Fix: Why is this a must-play?
Caler: Well when it launches PC when the OpenGL launches then Switch are my personal Choices, but the game will also be available on the XBox store for XBox One shortly after its PC release.
Why is this a must play? Nostalgia with a new aged twist. This game brings together the RPG, Adventure, and Puzzle genres in a way never seen before allowing the use of attacks and spells outside of battle to solve puzzles and execute quick battles. Adelaide features a large world filled with detail down to the last pixel, wonderful music that engages you into every scenes and an epic quest filled to the brim with adventure, drama, and excitement.
Review Fix: What’s next?
Caler: I’ve been debating on whats truly next. Adelaide has 2 more games in its overall story but I want to start perfecting the Tea Engine or start work on a Metroid like game. But for now the only thing coming up next is creating the OpenGL version of Adelaide for platforms like OSX, the Nintendo Switch, and the PS4.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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