Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga

By Jorge Ba-oh 11.07.2013 3

Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga on Nintendo gaming news, videos and discussion
Soul Saga, a new indie J-RPG, is heading to Wii U via crowdfunding. We spoke to the sole developer Mike Gale on the intriguing new project.

Gale, who formed his own company Disastercake, brought  his concept to Kickstarter and has blitzed the initial goal. Pitched a "A love letter to J-RPG classics from the Playstation era like Final Fantasy, Breath of Fire, Suikoden", Soul Saga is a brand new RPG in development for multiple platforms.

Soul Saga Kickstarter Campaign

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: Hi Mike, please introduce yourself and Disastercake.
 
Mike Gale: My name is Mike Gale and I'm a Game Developer working on a JRPG-inspired game called Soul Saga, which has a Kickstarter up that ends in a few days! Disastercake is my company name that I created and hope to be sticking with it for a long time! Soul Saga will be Disastercake's first in, hopefully, many games to come.

Cubed3: What previous games and projects had you worked on before starting Disastercake?
 
Mike Gale: My job at Microsoft had me touching on many games including Fable 3, Gears of War 3, and Age of Empires Online. There were several others as well. I didn't do a whole lot with each specific game, but I had a small hand in them.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: Please tell us a bit more about the Soul Saga concept.
 
Mike Gale: Soul Saga is a story driven JRPG where you can collect Guild Members, help the citizens of Medonia, explore the sky islands of Medonia, and work your way down to the scarred surface world of Oterra.

Cubed3: Who are the main playable characters in the Soul Saga adventure?
 
Mike Gale: The 4 main characters are Mithos, Elise, Taro, and Max.
 
Mithos is an aspiring Guild Master who wants to create the strongest Guild in the world, Elise is Mithos' childhood friend and the Guild's main Engineer, Taro is a spunky short rabbit creature (called a Toki) who is infected with the Ink corruption and transforms into a demon at times, and Max is a robot who mysteriously has the most advanced AI in the world and is the prime target of many Bounty Hunter groups.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: So how did the Soul Saga idea come to be, and why are you going down the independent route?
 
Mike Gale: I love making stories and I've always wanted to bring them to life in the form of a video game. I've taught myself everything there is to know about game development to get myself ready. I contract out artists to deal with that while I do all the programming, game design, writing, and management.

Cubed3: What classic JRPGs have inspired you in designing Soul Saga?
 
Mike Gale: I would say some of the biggest are Final Fantasy, Breath of Fire, Persona, and Skies of Arcadia.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: Whilst the classic RPG setup plays a major role in the design, are there any modern conventions that have made their way into Soul Saga?
 
Mike Gale: Sure. I'm looking to be inspired by the classics, not clone them, so I am making a lot of twists of my own!  Some of them include choosing difficulty levels; whether you want to play in Normal or Classic modes.

Cubed3: Please explain how the combat system works in the game.
 
Mike Gale: The combat system works similar to Final Fantasy X in that you take turns based on your speed stat and depending on the move you make.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: Why did you chose an on-screen battle approach instead of Final Fantasy-style random battles?
 
Mike Gale: I like the dynamic-ness of seeing your enemies. You have the choice to engage or run past, it's fun to do that!

Cubed3: The musical score sounds absolutely fantastic so far! How did your collaboration with Aivi Tran come to be?


 

 
Mike Gale: I heard her stuff around ,especially her Black Box album, and loved it!  She's really busy though ,and I had to book time with her months in advance.

Cubed3: Would you ever consider, aside from outsourcing, expanding into a team or working alongside a major publisher?
 
Mike Gale: Probably not. I prefer to work alone in my studio apartment. It leaves me to make games and not deal with a bunch of HR stuff. It would be hard to focus so much energy on development if I'm worried about whether I can feed 20 people's families.

Cubed3: When it comes to the Wii U, how would you use the GamePad controller?
 
Mike Gale: I am planning to put the player's cell phone on it. The player will have a smart phone in a steam punk-esque design. You'll get e-mails and messages from your Guild Members and friends around the world, and all that will be right there. So as your'e exploring your GamePad might start ringing and you can answer it. I also want to put the radar and altimeter of the airship on there as well.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: Would you consider other platforms like Nintendo 3DS?
 
Mike Gale: After I do my current ports I'd like to, but it will depend what Unity Game Engine can support it!

Cubed3: What hurdles have you had going at it alone?
 
Mike Gale: Mostly with budget. I can't do everything myself, and the big thing I contract out is art. Because no one else is putting sweat equity into the project it makes it expensive, but thankfully all the programming is covered by myself.

Image for Interview | Disastercake Talks Indie J-RPG Soul Saga


Cubed3: What are your thoughts on Nintendo's approach to indie developers?
 
Mike Gale: I am really happy with how they are opening up the field! I can't wait to start getting in their and making some great games for the Nintendo Wii U.

Cubed3: If you could work on any Nintendo franchise, what would it be any why?
 
Mike Gale: Probably The Legend of Zelda or Pokémon. Both are staples of my childhood, and I still like all of their modern titles. Nintendo have done a good job of not warping their franchises into something else, but still give them fresh air.

Cubed3: What are your plans for the future?
 
Mike Gale: To make Soul Saga! I really want this story to continue my whole career, even beyond Mithos and his guild! I can't wait to get this story in everyone's hands and I think they'll end up falling in love with the characters.


 
Box art for Soul Saga
Developer

Disastercake

Publisher

Disastercake

Genre

Turn Based RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  n/a

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date July 2014   North America release date July 2014   Japan release date TBA   Australian release date TBA   

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Comments

It's nice to see a lot of indies support the Wii U, and Nintendo's decision to have Unity on it was a great choice.  Soul Saga is sounding like a great game.  It was ironic I was talking about how I missed the Breath of Fire series the day before I heard about Soul Saga.

Lol all I see on the Article thumbnail is SoulCalibur's Nightmare fighting a young Siegfried in cartoony JRPG style in a game of a very similar name. Come to think about it...

Mission99 said:
Lol all I see on the Article thumbnail is SoulCalibur's Nightmare fighting a young Siegfried in cartoony JRPG style in a game of a very similar name. Come to think about it...

Very true actually! Didn't really notice until you brought it up. Character designs do have a slight SC vibe.

Cubed3 Admin/Founder & Designer

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