Fred Perry, creator of the comic book Gold Digger and the new hentai tactics RPG Tactics Elemental, talks with LewdGamer about his game’s Nutaku release.
Very few game creators in the Western H-game market use their real name publicly. Though, that’s just one of a number of ways Fred Perry isn’t your usual hentai game dev. A long-time comic book writer, he’s been putting out the comic book Gold Digger, among others, for Antarctic Press for decades. We had a chance to sit down with Fred (metaphorically speaking) and hear first hand what inspired him to make Tactics Elemental. We also found out a bit about his game, which is a combination of Fire Emblem, classic sci-fi, and porn.
LewdGamer: Hello, we’re here with Fred Perry, creator of the new game on Nutaku, Tactics Elemental. Must be a pretty exciting time for you, huh Fred?
Fred Perry: Greetings. And yes, this is my first published game, and my first interview about the same. But I’ve had published stories before, and interviews for them. So I’m not entirely a virgin.
LewdGamer: You have a bit of a more complex history then most Hentai game creators, correct?
Fred Perry: I suppose so. My professional career in writing and art began in comics. My first published work was in 1989: Ninja High School Yearbook number 1.
LewdGamer: What else have you made before?
Fred Perry: I joined the Marine Corps out of High School and fought in Desert Storm: In the very front of the front line. When I returned from being six months away from any girly magazines (Saudi Arabia does not allow even Sports Illustrated Swim Suit Editions in their nation.) I decided on doing a “Booty Book”: Gold Digger, my first creator owned comic.
I’ve created all kinds of comic stories since. Time Lincoln, The Littlest Zombie and Steam Wars comes to mind. I’ve also done my share of adult comics since then too. Short stories.
LewdGamer: What made you decide to try moving from comics to adult gaming then?
Fred Perry: I’ve got this itch to tell stories. With art and writing. I like to dabble in different mediums. I made an animated movie for Gold Digger. I wanted to tell a story with video games, so I did.
LewdGamer: That would be the game we’re here to talk with you about today, Tactics Elemental, correct? Can you tell our readers a little bit about Tactics Elemental?
Fred Perry: Sure. I’ve been a fan, no a freak, for tactical RPGs ever since Tactics Orge came out for the PS1 in the 90s. I’ve been dying to tell a story in that format for a long time. And when Fire Emblem Awakening came out, I was inspired to make that story an adult one!
Tactics Elemental’s story takes place in a realm where inter-dimensional travel isn’t quite common place, but it is known. In the world of Nowhere, five different races, formerly monstrous, live in relative peace when a catastrophic invasion strikes.
The way the people of Nowhere defend their home is unique. The world was… IS a precursor honeymoon vacation spot. Where powerful precursor spells enhance the magical strength of coupled lovers… Fucking gives superpowers to the pair.
LewdGamer: The aforementioned inspiration from Tactics Ogre and Fire Emblem, what can you tell us about the gameplay?
Fred Perry: The universe of Tactics Elemental is balanced by elemental relationship magic. So there is a strong rock-paper-scissor-spock-gun-rock dynamic. Underneath that is a second layer. For example, Fire beats Ice, but also beats what Ice beats but to a lessor degree. The NPCs you have in your company gain affinity for each other as they survive each battle. Gain enough affinity and they gain access to sexual interludes.
Every interlude level strengthens the bond of enchantment they form giving them unique powers depending on what the male and female bring to the bond.
LewdGamer: Can you briefly explain the affinity system in Tactics Elemental?
Fred Perry: Every NPC has four romantic prospects. If a pair of prospects survive through the battle, they gain affinity. Gain enough affinity and access to a bond level and a new interlude cut scene is unlocked.
LewdGamer: How long is the game?
Fred Perry: Even though their are four interludes to unlock per pair bond, a player can keep a favorite pair together to make them even more powerful. Or they can unlock other pairs for more interludes.
I’ve done three play-throughs. The fastest I’ve gotten through without grinding is about 22 hours. But I was only able to unlock five of the 200+ interludes. Four of those where given at the precursor portcullis access stage. I think a good dedicated RPG player could cut my time in half though since they would skip dialog
LewdGamer: Certainly not short then, but let’s talk about what we really want to hear about. What’s the lewd content like in the game?
Fred Perry: I wanted things to be really raunchy. But it’s not quite hardcore. If you really get down to brass tacks it’s a happy medium between hard and soft. The interludes are explicit and fun and hot. I’ve had to work with a boner way too often while rendering the scenes. But I wanted them to be warm and loving too. As that is the nature of the enchantment bond.
I wanted things to be as affectionate and as loving and as raunchy as a hot honeymoon night would be for every interlude.
LewdGamer: It’s a bit surprising, but “affectionate” is not really a word thrown around a lot with many of the games we cover. Do you see your game partly as a romance?
Fred Perry: I see my game as a mix or romantic and lusty. Every pair is genuinely into each other and in their own way. They love each others quirks. That’s why their bonds work. It took a while before I could create every prospect list and why each would be into another.
Plus, I got to flesh out each character’s personality and history through their interludes. It became a story telling device that elucidated every character inside and out… and in and out, in and out. I mean, what better way to learn about a character than when their fucking their fuck-pal?
LewdGamer: What kind of kinks did you feature in your game?
Fred Perry: Heh. Well, the characters are pretty kinky in their own way. Size play: The Gnos race are all impish but not children. The Bruyette are cyclopean but not too big for their partners. Makyl has his slime’s and slime summons to use with his partners. I’m not sure if that’s a genre but it should be. Pazza, Threedle and Cassieopia are pretty dominant females who are quite demanding, but need to be dominated sometimes too. But for the most part the variety comes in the interaction between sizes and the different attributes of every race. For example, the Illaths, whose ancestors flayed minds their mouth tentacles, now use them as sexy tongues and give the best head out of all Nowhere races.
I suppose I just had so much to do I didn’t have enough space to explore bondage or toy play or anything else by the time I finished my outline. I never felt as though any of the interludes were repeats of any other
LewdGamer: Do you have a personal favorite scene from the game? Be honest.
Fred Perry: Hmmmmmmmmmm. I think… I think the Penderwyn scenes are my current favorite. When Threedle discovers his interdimensional kiosk. It makes me laugh out loud every time I forget what I did there! You gain access to it as soon as you unlock the access to the Astral Leyline.
LewdGamer: Why’d you choose Nutaku as the release platform for the game?
Fred Perry: For a while I had my game available in its earliest versions to my backers from Offbeatr. A few of them pointed out that they’d like it if Tactics Elemental was available on Nutaku so they could keep all their adult games in a central area.
At the time I didn’t know what Nutaku was so I investigated. I’ve already got Good Old Games and Steam, but I’ve been looking for something like Nutaku for a while. It’s a great fit for TE and I’ve been shopping there myself.
LewdGamer: Has your experience with publishing on Nutaku been a positive one?
Fred Perry: Yes, indeed! I intend to give them first crack at any adult games I’ll publish in the future!
LewdGamer: Are you completely done with work relating to Tactics Elemental, or do you have any DLC on the way?
Fred Perry: I’m done with the main story of Tactics Elemental. The defense of the realm against the Xubus. The DLC I have planned will flesh out the tangents I hinted at throughout the campaign. The last of the DLC will even give some closer on the Xubus as a threat throughout the planes.
LewdGamer: How many DLC do you have planned total?
Fred Perry: I have four mini campaigns planned. Each is about the size of a story chapter from the main game. So the price point is about 5$ each.
LewdGamer: Can you tell us when you plan on releasing them? Also, what can players expect out of your DLCs?
Fred Perry: The first will be ready by the end of May. The company takes the fight to the home-realm of the Xubus’ current battle slaves, the Orkie. A showdown with Lord Nois and his eager, villainous cocksleave, Flairette!
The next will be at the end of summer. A look at the places where each of the races of Nowhere came from before they settled on Nowhere.
The fall DLC will be an excursion into the earliest ruins of the Precursors for their history. The Eternial will have to challenge one of the precursors to a “sex duel.”
The final DLC will be a campaign against the Xubus bankers. Where the secret of their hegemony’s power will be unveiled.
Those are the one’s planned. But if they do well, I can always make more. The engine can accommodate 200 pages of eight DLC modules, so there is room.
LewdGamer: After you finish working on DLC, do you plan to continue working in H-games? Afterall, you do already have a prosperous career in comics.
Fred Perry: I’ll have gotten a lot of my adult game creation fix out of my system by then. But my need to fill that void slowly refills over time, so yes. I’ll be back to make a new one soon. But, of course, feedback refills inspiration too. If folks want to see more, I’ll absorb that and to want to make more!
LewdGamer: You came into the adult gaming community already as someone with the resources to make the kind of games they wanted, as opposed to many devs who started out amateur game makers. How does the community look coming from that kind of perspective?
Fred Perry: Before I got the inspiration for TE, I didn’t feel like I had anything to add. In every genre there is something that I wish I had thought of first, but I’m glad to have seen completely covered. Visual Novels, for example are wonderful examples of story telling. But I feel like anything I’ll create with VNs will have probably already been covered before. I guess it’s like coming to a boom town in the west with my prospecting shovel and discovering all the mines have already been explored. So it was nice to find something that hasn’t been completely delved into.
LewdGamer: I guess if they were 49ers, then we’re the 69ers, huh?
Fred Perry: Miner 69er… There’s a dirty limerick in that!
LewdGamer: What do you think the strengths of the video game erotica as opposed to comic book erotica?
Fred Perry: It’s the same as reading about a battle and reading about the hero reaping the reward verses guiding the hero through the battle and gaining that hero’s reward. The level and type of satisfaction is different. I think it’s actually a bit more personal. Like there’s more at stake and so the reward feels more satisfying. Which is why I wanted so many kinds of rewards/interludes to chose from. Even after making all the art and writing the story I can still enjoy the story as a game. Something that doesn’t quite happen after I write a story and read it.
LewdGamer: Do you have any favorite erotic games?
Fred Perry: I just picked up Eroico from the Nutaku store. I’m really enjoying that one right now. My current favorite is Witch Trainer by Akabur. Very comedic. Wish it had more art though. Aside from that, my past games were the Viper series. I haven’t been able to play all the way through anything else.
LewdGamer: Final question. Do you have any funny or interesting stories from the game’s development worth telling?
Fred Perry: Nothing that would come off as exciting. I mean, as I built more and more assets my greatest fear was losing a year worth of art to a hard drive crash so I had like six or seven backups that were 700GB each. Or debugging sessions that cost me a keyboard as a slammed it in frustration. But… I did learn some things about bugs or code problems that seem like their impossible to solve. Sleep on them. Sometimes let the problem ruminate for a week if need be. The answer will worm it’s way through eventually.
LewdGamer: Thanks for the advice. And thank you for stopping in to talk with us, Fred.
Fred Perry: I’m glad to be here! Thank YOU for the interview! And I really hope you enjoy Tactics Elemental!
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