YIIK: A Postmodern RPG has quickly made a name for itself. With an all-star lineup of highly respected people within the games industry and voice acting world including Clifford Chapin, Hiroki Kikuta, Toby Fox, and Andrew Fayette all lending their talents on the game, it’s no wonder that this is actually being hyped among the Indie game scene.
While attending PAX South 2018,we spoke with the founder of Ysbryd Games ,Brian Kwek, to learn more about the game.
Gaming Conviction: What inspired the art style?Brian Kwek: The team was heavily inspired by the late 90s ps1-era games. Although they went for a flat cell-shading, they still wanted to capture this sort of nostalgia button that you want to hit. With the day-one style visual they wanted to bring, they didn’t need to make it so fancy. They want the actual content to speak for itself.
GC: Who is Alex?BK: So at the very beginning of the game Alex has just come out of college from his undergraduate degree. He was a Liberal Arts major who looks like a hipster. The game is designed to be satire, so you’ll probably be inclined to call it the hipster RPG, but I’d like to think that I wouldn’t enjoy playing the hipster life. I can assure you that is not the case.
Having said that, Alex is trying to find his identity. He’s at the crossroad where he just finished college and wonders what he will do with his life. So he runs into this message board called Aunism1999. The best way to describe it is like Reddit, but full of conspiracy theories.
GC: What kinds of emotions do you think players will experience while progressing through the game?BK: I believe they will feel lots of intentional confusion.Searching themselves and trying to find out what does this mean. Not just the characters, but for the player themselves. We don’t call it postmodern for a reason. It is like a JRPG in the sense that you are going around collecting items and solving quests, but as you get further into the game it drifts away from being purely about solving quests and more about examining what the characters are in this for. So this reality that Alex is in, does he actually know it very well? It’s to be more intrepid about how they may get through life.
GC: Was there a reason why the game is set in the year 1999?BK: The internet was still new and as still going through its birth phase. Before the late 90s it was really not meant for consumer use. Back in the day, it was really like the wild west. There were lots of conspiracy theories, misinformation, and speaking unhinged. Blogs weren’t really a thing back then, but you would still have websites showing off what they believed to be the 50 best Pogs. Most of the time, you would read something and only take it at face value. You don’t think that this tinfoil conspiracy theory thread could be wrong. There is a sense of exploration of looking at this and pursuing it. That is what’s going through Alex’s mind. He reviews the stuff that is on these message boards.