Interview: Talking Whispering Willows' PlayStation release with LOOT Interactive
LOOT Interactive talks indie game publisher, PlayStation Cross-Buy, and more ahead of tomorrow's game release
Ahead of tomorrow's release of Whispering Willows for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, we had the opportunity to talk with newly independent game publisher LOOT Interactive about Night Light Interactive's intriguing graphic adventure.
For those unfamiliar, Whispering Willows, released originally for PC and OUYA, will be making the transition to PlayStation platforms tomorrow. The game, which puts you in the role of young adventurer Elena Elkhorn, who must solve the mystery of her missing father by exploring the haunted Willows mansion, is described as a "classic" graphic adventure.
In our conversation with LOOT Interactive's Managing Director David Sterling we talk about how the gameplay translates to consoles, the publisher's recent transition to an independent game publisher, and what PlayStation gamers have to look forward to with Whispering Willow's release tomorrow.
GameZone (GZ): Whispering Willows has been out for about a year now on PC, and most of the user reviews on Steam are positive, what can console players expect out of the game when it launches?
LOOT Interactive Managing Director, David Sterling (LOOT): To enhance and improve the already great gameplay for users, Whispering Willows has been completely remastered to play at 60 frames per second in 1080p resolution, to ensure that the PlayStation audience gets the best experience possible. We also took advantage of the PlayStation’s light, sound, and rumble controller features to really heighten the player experience while playing Whispering Willows. The PlayStation version will also have its own dynamic theme separately available with the purchase of this cross-buy.
GZ: As a game developed first for the OUYA and PC, how has the transition to consoles been? Do you feel the gameplay translates well to consoles?
LOOT: The transition from PC to PlayStation has been a great experience. The game’s colorful art style lends itself really well to a big-screen experience and the gameplay works great on PlayStation controllers.
GZ: How about gameplay on the Vita?
LOOT: It is a great Vita game! We knew the Vita community was going to be excited about Whispering Willows but the response has been overwhelming.
GZ: Is the decision to support Cross-Buy between the PS4 and Vita a mutual decision between LOOT and Sony, or is it something they really try to push on developers? What would you, as a publisher, say the benefit to cross-buy is?
LOOT: Everyone should support cross buy. We will always provide cross buy functionality whenever possible. It is a great feature and provides significant added value to players.
GZ: So often you see games these days emphasize action and utilize big set pieces. Whispering Willows takes a much different approach, with a heavy focus on exploration and puzzle-solving. How do you think the console crowd will respond to this sort of classic graphic adventure gameplay?
Answer: There is a reason why people refer to this type of adventure gameplay as “classic.” People have loved this kind of game since the beginning of games and we are certain they will love it again. Whispering Willows has all the elements of the classic graphical adventure game – exploration, challenging puzzles, memorable characters, and a cohesive story that ties together the entire experience. It’s incredibly well done (if we do say so ourselves!) and will give players an immersive and unique experience.
GZ: Whispering Willows is very uniquely stylized, which is actually what caught my attention. What sort of inspiration went into its design?
LOOT: The artwork in Whispering Willows was inspired by classic animated motion pictures as well as traditional Japanese anime style. All of the game’s artwork has been hand-painted.