Monday, August 30, 2010
It’s taken me a long while to finish my latest game, Haiku Quest. Mainly I had trouble recruiting voice actors to play the parts (as in very few volunteered when I asked, my request topic was mysteriously deleted, and even less replied after I’d sent them the innuendo laden script). But, on a whim which I never expected to work, I emailed Christopher’s agent and, intrigued by the idea of a non-profit independent game based on Japanese poetry, he took five minutes from his schedule to record the lines on someone’s laptop and emailed me a giant WAV file to cut up. If his voice sounds a little off, it’s because he was pressed for time (he apologises) and it wasn’t done in any kind of sound booth. I did my best to clean it up though.
The game was inspired my experiences with the haiku mini-game in Boku no Natsuyasumi 3. This was in Japanese though, and I wanted something analogous in English for western players to appreciate.
The poems are generally free-form, but I tried to adhere to most of the rules for writing English haiku. Since only fellow game players are likely to take an interest, all the poems were based on well-known videogames. I suppose the great failing of this endeavour is that you need a background in games to understand them. Christopher mentioned he only got a couple of the references.
The game features:
* A JRPG style of design
* A large overworld to explore
* Villages to visit
* NPCs to speak with
* Stores and inns to stop by
* Unique “instant-time” battle system
* Five different monsters to fight
* Streamlined inventory system
* 125 different poems to compose
* 5 true haiku to decipher
* A special "hidden secret" from the gods of haiku
* An incredible ending which will leave you floored
* The voice work of Christopher Walken
Download it here!
TIP: When playing, please do NOT hold down the arrow keys, rather tap them, since otherwise it may skip certain poetry sections.
And if you like it, be sure to spread it around.
Now all I hope is that someone tips off those lovely chaps TIGSource and this gets some kind of news entry. Heck, email Kotaku too, while you're at it.