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Anti-Geek: Encounter with the game developer Contre-Jour

Despite his success, Mokus remains faithful to his Ukrainian city of Lemberg, where he lives and works.

For lovers of mystery and puzzle games, Contre-Jour is undoubtedly a must-have. The game initially released for iOS, quickly stands out from the others for its excellent rating. At E3, Electronic Entertainment Expo 2011 in Los Angeles, was voted the best game for iPad 2011. The brain behind this concept, Ukrainian developer Maksym Hryniv, could qualify as anti-geek, his motto: "If you want well done, do it yourself. " You will not see him spending his days behind a computer with a large bottle of Coke and a packet of chips in his hand. Maskym doesn't match a programmer's stereotype. Instead, he travels a lot and plays sports (he is also a breakdance teacher). We discussed with him about Contre Jour and the future of mobile platform games.

Thanks for taking the time to meet the AndroidPIT team. Contre Jour's iOS version was released in 2011. Why did the Android version take so long to arrive?

We are a small team. I work in collaboration with artist Andrey Shvyrev, a great guy! He learned to draw by himself. I am responsible for the technique, he for the gameplay and also, from time to time, give my opinion on his work. If I had started developing for Android earlier, it would certainly end faster, but I hired developers and lost track of time. But I promise that in the future, my games for Android, Windows and iOS will be released at the same time.

Do you already have plans for future games?

I am currently working on a new game. This will be a unique multiplayer strategy game. Each level is a musical score composed by the player. The music changes depending on the way you play. We want to create something original, never seen before; It is a game that appeals to human feelings as much as possible.

What can you tell us about bringing Contre Jour to the Android platform? Did he have any particular difficulties?

It was not particularly difficult. Of course, there were some problems caused by Android fragmentation, but nothing as tragic as we initially feared. Testing on different Android devices was not too difficult. my work. It amused me to overcome these obstacles. Each platform has its advantages and disadvantages.

Maksym developed the game on his own.

I heard that you developed the first version of Contre Jour completely alone and without help. Is that true?

Yes and no. I worked for a month with an artist. Otherwise, I worked seven months alone to develop the game. It's always fun when I read reports from major game studios, for example Ubisoft. They boast that only five people worked on the game during the early stages. So I think: How far would Contre Jour have gone if we had so many people to develop!

Contre Jour, a very popular iOS game, thrills Android fans alike.

Contre Jour has many followers, both on iOS and Android. Working on your own has many advantages, but it's also hard to be unbiased. Aren't you afraid that "normal" gamers won't get in the game and that Contre Jour disappears into the mass of applications?

Everyone told me something like that, but I sold a lot more than I thought. Now when I look at my game I sometimes say to myself, "How did I get it?" But that does not mean that from now on I will only develop sequels. Contre Jour was a graphic experience (graphic style is still very rare). My next game will be a different experience based on the first song.

Do you have a secret recipe for the perfect game? You have often said, "Gameplay is all."

That's true, but each game is a mosaic made up of many small pieces. And each little piece must adapt to the other. The essential gameplay to create a good game. A title certainly needs a good idea, excellent music, graphics and stories, but without good gameplay either. And vice versa: even if you have great gameplay, the game won't find its audience without the rest. All elements complement each other.

Mobile platform games are often criticized for their complicated controls. Do you think they are still below the consoles or PC?

Game consoles have been around for a long time, unlike the mobile phone industry where games are still dependent on the performance of smartphones and tablets. Today, many well-known titles are used on mobile phones without changing the game pattern and of course this is not ideal for the player. We need to explore the possibilities offered by the touch screen. We need to invent new options to interact with players to develop a kind of game never before seen.

We must seize the opportunity and move away from established regimes: there are many successful series that have remained unchanged over the last 20 years, and they are also the traditional gameplay that has been imposed on the mobile industry. Developers should really consider everything from device size, controls, duration, to type of use.

The wonderful graphics of Contre Jour conquered the users.

What can you tell us about the future of mobile platform games? How long will the boom last?

Honestly, we haven't reached the summit yet. There is not even a boom. More and more users prefer to get things moving: people move from their desktop to their notebook and from their notebook to tablets and smartphones. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. We cannot forget the many options offered by digital distribution! Players can download digital tracks and use through the same account on multiple devices.

The console industry, however, is still based on traditional distribution, and when a game disc is scratched, you lose 60 and you can throw it through the window. But all this is changing: we have new users with all new needs and new distribution channels. In my opinion, the biggest changes are yet to come. In a year or two, we'll know more.

And I am also part of this change: five years ago, I would never have been able to work as I do today.

Thanks again to Maksym who kindly agreed to answer our questions and look forward to discovering your new game!

(tagsToTranslate) Contre Jour (t) Maksym Hryniv (t) Game (t) Game (t) Anti-Geek (t) Interview