The Legend of Queen Opala series has seen plenty of coverage in our first review and second review that covered both titles. Lewdgamer had the opportunity to talk with developer SweGabe and attempts to gain more insight in the history of this series.
Q: What were your motivations for getting involved in the erotic side of game development?
A: That’s a good question, it kind of just happened naturally. I always wanted to tell stories, but I also knew at the same time that making a straight up traditional game without any adult content would probably not grab anyone’s attention. But I didn’t just want to be another developer, I wanted to set the bar for what people should expect from mature games when it comes to quality and content, besides just having sex.
Q: When did the idea of making this series first develop?
A: The three Egyptians girls the series started with were created years before the first game was even a thing. At one point, I was approached by someone who wanted to turn them into an episodic web cartoon, and voice actresses were scouted for the parts. Unfortunately, nothing became of it, but having VA’s involved gave me the idea to maybe try to do something by myself instead, a game even.
Q: What are the most difficult challenges you faced in the development?
A: Trying to find the time to work on the games, as the first two in the series were made on the side as a hobby while I struggled on the side with unemployment.And also being pretty limited to what only the game engine itself had to offer, as I originally couldn’t afford having custom made characters designed.
Q: Did you consider utilizing other means of making this game a reality, aside from RPG Maker?
A: I had a lot of experience with RPG Maker XP from the past, when I made a few unfinished games by myself, just for fun. But my fairly low computer specs, along with very limited knowledge in other programs, didn’t really give me a lot of options to choose between.
Q: Was making the game an RPG a deliberate choice or did you consider other options?
A: I think a visual novel style game was on the tables, but I eventually decided for RPG from personal preference as it would allow for much more variation and player choices.
Q: What kinds of criticisms have you encountered and how did you address these issues?
A: Each of the first two games had their share of criticisms, such as quickly moving greater distances and keeping track of various stats and progressions. With each new game to the series, I’d like to think I’ve managed to make these lingering problems go away, or at the very least become far less of an issue. The original game also had a lack of adult scenes while the sequel shared had this problem, along with a difficulty spike. But with the very limited budget I had in those games, it wasn’t really anything I could do about it since having illustrations drawn doesn’t come for free.
Q: How do you feel about the difficulties with censorship? Is the recent air of sex negativity in gaming bothersome?
A: That is the good thing about not having a publisher; there is no one around to tell you what to do or force censorship upon your production.
Q: Do you feel the adult gaming market needs to improve and if so, how would you go about doing this?
A: I think adult games have really come a long way in the more recent years, but I can’t comment too much about it as I’ve only played a few myself. But the focus on fan sponsored games and developers lately can only be a good thing for the market, because these people are making games for their love of it, and not for simply collecting a paycheck at the end of the day.
Q: Why did you choose for commissioning various artists, instead of a single one?
A: You can’t please everyone, but by commissioning as many artists as possible, it offers far more variation and styles which should let nearly every player find at least something they like.
Q: Were these artists allowed freedom to decide the setting of the pics themselves?
A: Most of the time, yes, or I’d give rather vague descriptions to let them interpret the illustration how they wish.
Q: Did you research Egyptian mythology, and did it influence the series’s content?
A; I did some research on the various gods and Queen Cleopatra, whom my character Queen Opala is greatly influenced and inspired by. But as the series went on, I decided to instead create an original world on my own where I don’t have to be tied to reality or historical accuracy. Egyptian roots will always be present with Queen Opala though, even if the games will focus on Egypt and Thebes far less.
Q: Regarding the game’s audio, Did the inspiration come from any special sources?
A: Not to my knowledge, there is always a chance I’ve been inspired without really knowing, but I always try to do my own thing.
Q: Are there any intentions into making this game compatible with mobile devices?
A: As of the time of this interview, I’m only focused on my work with Legend of Queen Opala: Origin and having it finished. But it is a question I’ve received many times, along with offers, so it’s certainly possible it’ll happen down the road.
Q: Any other projects you are working on and do you have plans for expansion?
A: I have basic ideas down for more games, including one spin-off though that is something I’ll only give more thought once my current project is done. Much like the previous two games, it is highly likely Legend of Queen Opala: Origin will also be re-released as a “Golden Edition” version with added content. These are usually released with bug fixes that playtesters were never able to find, along with any additional content I didn’t have time to include in the initial release. But just like the main games, Golden Editions, or any other “expansion”, they’ll always be released for free.
Q: Lastly, do you have any advice for aspiring adult game developers?
A: Hmm…Don’t set the bar too high at first, the difference between finishing a project or not is where you place your goal. If you keep pushing up the ending and add more stuff, there is a high risk you’ll simply lose interest and leave you with an incomplete game. And take some criticism with a pinch of salt, there will always be haters, no matter how good you or your product is.
Our gratitude goes out to SweGabe for participating in this interview, and we wish fortitude the dev’s future endeavours.
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