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  • Interview: IGF Student Compeition Finalists Florian Faller and Adrian Stutz, Feist

    [02.17.09]
    - GameCareerGuide.com staff
  •  Florian Faller and Adrian Stutz, two recent graduates of Zurich University of the Arts in Switzerland, built Feist, a simple but stylistic 2D game. The music, provided by Podington Bear is a bit ambient, but just as stylistic as the game itself.

    In October 2008, they entered it into the Unity Awards and won Best Overall Game and Best Visual Design. Then they entered it into the Independent Games Festival Student Competition. It was just recently named a finalist.

    Feist takes the player on a journey over high mountains and through deep forests. In the world, the player interacts with inanimate objects, opening doors and operating elevators, as well as animate creatures. All creatures in Feist search independently for targets and act autonomously. The course of the game is subject to constant change, taking a different direction each time the game is played and therefore making room for the unexpected. Feist doesn't want to engage the player on a hunt for points or goals, but rather provides an immersive world to explore, to interact with, and to linger in.

    GameCareerGuide caught up with Faller and Stutz to talk a bit about the game, which they say developed organically rather than toward a hard and fast design.


    GameCareerGuide: First off, congratulations! Feist was named a finalist in the Student Competition. Are you excited for the awards ceremony in March? Will you be able to be there in person?

    Adrian Stutz and Florian Faller: We are very happy to be invited to the GDC and are currently planning our trip. We are looking forward to meeting many interesting people and following up on any opportunities that open, both for Feist and for ourselves.

    GCG:
    Tell us how Feist came to be. Where did the idea come from initially, how did the team come together, and under what conditions did you develop the game?

    AS and FF: Feist started out as our final thesis for our bachelor degrees at the Zurich University of the Arts. We decided to form a team in January 2008 with only a very vague idea of what kind of game we wanted to make.

    We then fleshed out a concept of how we wanted to make the game, rather than what the game should end up being. We wanted to be flexible in the process and to be led by experimentation. We ended up creating a lot of groundwork that wasn't exposed when we turned the game in for the thesis, but we were able to work on that afterward.

    GCG: There were only two of you on the development team. What were each of your strengths and weaknesses going into the project, and how did you cope with them?

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