Interview with David Pittman, Creator of Upcoming Video Game Eldritch
By Haylee Fisher (@haylee_fisher)
What do you get when you combine one part H.P. Lovecraft, one part immersive roguelike, and one part literary adventure? The soon-to-be-released video game Eldritch from brothers David and Kyle Pittman. The two have worked on big-name projects like Borderlands and BioShock in the past, but have now created their own company and are releasing their first video game soon. Eldritch promises to be a challenging and action-packed experience in which users will explore, sneak, and spell-cast their way through a mysterious library and uncover its secrets along the way. Read on to learn more about Eldritch, direct from its creator David Pittman.
Haylee: Can you tell me about your background and how Eldritch came to be?
David: I worked as a programmer in the games industry for about six years, mostly at 2K Marin, where I helped to develop BioShock 2 (2010) and The Bureau: XCOM Declassified (2013). Over the years, my creative interests diverged from what 2K was doing, and Kyle and I began to discuss forming an independent studio where we could make games that were uniquely our own. We finally had the financial opportunity to do so this year, and we formed Minor Key Games in July.
H: What inspired you to create the game?
D: Eldritch is the product of a lot of ideas that have been bouncing around my head over the years. Immersive action games like Thief and Deus Ex were especially formative to me as a game developer, so I was eager to make something in that vein. I’ve also been a fan of roguelikes ever since I was introduced to NetHack in college, and the recent trend of action-oriented roguelike games like Spelunky and The Binding of Isaac suggested that there is a growing audience for that kind of game.
H: Tell me about Eldritch. What’s the plot about? What systems will it be played on, etc.?
D: In Eldritch, the player finds herself trapped in a vast library in the 1920s, where ancient books provide passage to bizarre, unearthly worlds. To make her escape, the player must venture into those realms, retrieve powerful artifacts, and uncover the secret of the library.
H: Eldritch will be available for Windows PC on October 21 (Today).
D: I am hoping to bring Eldritch to Mac and Linux later, but there is no fixed timeline for that, and it depends on the success of the Windows version.
H: Eldritch has been described as very H.P. Lovecraftian. With the success of other works inspired by him, how will Eldritch stand out in the crowd?
D: Lovecraft’s mythoses have a perennial popularity, and to be fair, they have been fairly well tread by video games in recent years. Although it is inspired by Lovecraft, Eldritch is not beholden to the canon, which allows it to be a more fast-paced and action-oriented romp than most Lovecraftian games. For that reason, I believe Eldritch stands as a fun and exciting game with or without the mythos.
H: What has been the process of getting the game off the ground? I saw where it was recently green lit. What does that mean and where do you go from here?
D: I developed Eldritch independently over the past six months, and recently began reaching out to the press and opening up the beta version to get feedback from a wider audience. The finished game will launch on October 21, and I intend to support it after that with maintenance work, ports to Mac and Linux, and possibly localization into other languages.
Steam Greenlight is a process by which game developers can submit their titles for review by the community, with the most successful titles being curated for inclusion in the Steam digital distribution store. Getting through this process was a huge relief to me. Steam offers a significant amount of exposure for PC games, and the difference in expected sales means that I will now probably get to make another game after Eldritch.
H: Where can people find out more information about Eldritch?
D: Screenshots, a trailer, and more are available at the game’s website: http://www.eldritchgame.com
Everyone is welcome to chat with me on Twitter: @dphrygian
H: Finally, why should people buy Eldritch?
D: If you like H.P. Lovecraft, immersive action games, or challenging roguelikes, you’ll probably find something to like in Eldritch. If you’re like me and you love all those things, then Eldritch is the game you’ve been waiting for!
H: Is there anything else you would like people to know about Eldritch?
D: This is where I would usually beg people to vote for Eldritch on Greenlight, but we’ve already passed! So I’d just like to give a huge, heartfelt thanks to everyone who has voted and preordered and helped boost the signal.
Will you check out Eldritch when it arrives at the end of the month?