Amongst many other indie companies at the Indie Arena Booth was also Wispfire with its game Herald. We found Bart Heijltjes and we chatted about both the game and the studio.
Bart told us that Herald is an interactive drama adventure, taking place in the 19th century. The player takes control of a ship steward who is in search of his roots. Born in the western world and travelling to the east, you go through a lot of things, doing chores on the ship and following the captain’s orders. You learn about all the tensions that exist between people on the ship and you are also slowly understanding the secret behind the ship, the Herald.
As steward it’s your job to take care of all the passengers, be they rich or poor, important or downtrodden. Set during a time of great inequality and injustice, players are given the choice of how to deal with various dilemmas resulting from 19th century colonialism.
The studio behind the game was founded by 4 people and now together with the interns, they are about 12 people. The development of the game has been ongoing for the past 2.5 years and the first out of the two parts of the game is planned to fully release this winter. Even though Bart told us that funding was difficult to find, the game went through a successful Kickstarter, allowing it to continue development without too many issues.
During Gamescom, the company showed the very first demo of the game with voiceacting.