French games publisher Bento Studio has just released Cosmophony, a game for mobile devices featuring an original drum & bass soundtrack scored by Salaryman. We spoke to the game’s designer Benoit Prunneaux to find out what to expect…
Tell us about Bento and previous games you’ve developed…
Bento has been operating for four years developing games mainly based on the Unity 3D engine. We’re two passionate individuals who were brought together by a common project: making original, creative games. Ever since we’ve been constantly looking to provide the most demanding gamers with high quality games.
We’ve demonstrated our talents by winning various prizes like ‘Unity’ for Flateboyz or ‘Game of the Week’ on Kongregate for Spacetrooper USA, which was exclusive to the Sony Xperia for three months. In total, Bento has distributed around one million games.
What do you find is the best approach for starting a new project? Do you think about the story (or characters or style etc.) you want to get across or do you worry about mechanics and gameplay first?
That’s a hard question. I don’t think there is a good or bad approach because it depends of the project itself. Sometimes it begins with a discussion or by a craving that you’ve had for years.
And if you feel that you get enough positive feedback when you try explaining your idea then you begin imagining the game and naturally you begin working around the main aspect. Sometimes it’s the scenario; sometime it’s more technical like a new terraforming or voxel system. For Cosmophony it was more a wish to create a game with a drum & bass music soundtrack.
How did you get the idea for Cosmophony?
It’s a long story but I always wanted to create a game with a DnB soundtrack and we met Salaryman after a party in Lyon. And after some discussion Cosmophony was born!
How long did you spend developing it?
We started working on the game in 2012 but only spent six month developing it. This project is entirely self-funded so we had to work on other projects beside our internal productions to keep the opportunity to create our own games.
What’s the object of the game?
You fly your way through a collapsing universe at an incredible speed, avoiding blocks and shooting enemies that comes at you in rhythm with the music. You have to finish the level without hitting any objects along your run.
What makes the game different from other musical game it’s that you don’t have to shoot the enemies in rhythm.
Instead of being a condition of victory, reward or defeat, the music is only here to help you memorise each part of the level a bit like a musical score. You choose when you hit the enemy and this way you get a little bit of creative freedom.
There are two game modes: practice to train yourself by moving forward and backward into the track and normal mode, where no error is allowed and gives you access to the next level.
Who are you targeting with this game and why?
The game is suitable for everyone but it’s a hard game focused on skill and performance, so you have to like to take on challenges bigger than you. We’ve made this choice because today there is only a few games that offer the kind of experience where you have to really work you way through the game. We like making games in the “good old fashioned way” with an simple, direct, active and rewarding gameplay.
French d&b producer Salaryman has produced the original soundtrack, why did you go for an all dnb soundtrack and why did you choose to work with Salaryman?
I’ve simply been a fan of DnB for years. We decided to work together with Salaryman very naturally. After I explained our project he perfectly understood our wishes and we were on the same wavelength immediately. So the relationship all along the development was excellent.
Salaryman is not just a talented DJ/producer, working with him has been a real pleasure. He made us look at game development with his fresh and creative vision and we really hope that you will enjoy what the mix of our two universes have brought to life.
Cosmophony is available for 3$ in 12 languages including English, French, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, Turkish, Russian, Italian, Arabic, German, Spanish and Japanese. Salaryman’s soundtrack is also out now.