G33k P0p: So today we are interviewing the awesome Daniel Ström from Guru Games, the studio behind Magnetic Cage Closed which recently released on Xbox One. So my first question is how long did it take to make a game like this?
Daniel: Well the game started out as a school project back in 2013 and after a short break over the summer we have been working on it constantly. So its about two years now (wow, has it really been that long?). When we started out we were learning so much that as soon as something was done we knew how to make it better, and started over. In the end we are very happy with how it turned out though, even if there will always be things we want to improve.
GP: From what I have seen it seems like the game has sort of a Portal vibe going on, was this intentional or just pure coincidence?
DS: There is nothing accidental about it, Portal was our main source of inspiration. The first person puzzle genre is a small one, and we felt like Portal fans wanted something new to play. The first version of Magnetic, on a design level, was an attempt at combining Portal with the movie The Cube. There are also plenty of Portal references in the game, so yeah, no accident.
GP: So with a game like Magnetic I assume you had to think a lot about the physics and mechanics, so what was the most difficult game mechanic to get working?
DS: Hmm that is a tough call. Probably the Magnet gun in itself, its a very complex device with a ton of variables to tweak such as spread, falloff over distance, angle etc. Balancing that gun was not my job, and for that I am very grateful. Other stuff we had trouble with were things like the more open areas of the game, and how to lock a box on the gun.
GP: Magnetic seems to have a very simple premise and that seems to work in your favour because it seems like it allows the player to play the game in a lot of different ways. Did you have any plans to give the game a much more detailed and linear story during development?
DS: Nope, we really wanted the game to have a branching storyline and a high replayability-value from the start. Its just one of the things we thought we could do differently: add replayability to the genre. Ive played Portal maybe 5 or 6 times and although I love it its the same game every time. But what if it wasnt? And what if you could actually change things, find your own way through the facility? Those questions are what drove us forward in the direction that we took with Magnetic.
GP: So the game has multiple endings based on your choices made during gameplay, so how many endings are there in total?
DS: There are a total of nine endings in the game, some very different than others. We wanted to do even more, and have bigger differences between the paths, but sadly time is a constraint you cannot escape from and we had to limit ourselves in order to finish the game on time.
GP: Finally, do you have plans to go further with Magnetic? Perhaps a sequel?
DS: There are always plans, of course, but we just launched the game on Xbox One as well as a free DLC for Steam users with extra challenge maps so right now we are going to take a break from Magnetic and wait to see what users want more of. If there is a demand from our community for a sequel we will certainly consider it.
GP: Thank you very much for this interview and answering my questions.
DS: No worries, anytime! Thank you for getting in touch and setting this up!
Magnetic Cage Closed is out now on Steam and Xbox One. For more G33k P0p Exclusives keep it G33k!