Interview With Oozoo Inc.
The original 3D beat’em up game – Brandnew Boy – astounded many recently with its intense action and flawless controls, as that’s not a combination of elements normally found in a game released for Apple’s iOS platforms. We were so impressed with the results that we simply had to talk with the developer – Oozoo Inc – to learn more about this breakthrough in touch screen gaming.
The first question I have is something that has certainly made myself, and everyone else I showed the game to, very curious. What does the phrase “Brandnew Boy” in the title refer to? Is it a reference to the hero’s memory loss, does it mean something else entirely, or is it something that won’t be answered until a later story chapter?
Rookie, the main character in Brandnew Boy is not a reference to be revealed later in the story but what Brandnew Boy represents is someone from a modern background opening up to a world of fantasy in a new period. Originally Brandnew Boy had a long name as “Brandnew Boy: Oriental Queen” to represent an episode in the title but because of some issues we decided to just go with just ‘Brandnew Boy.’ Later in the future we are planning on expanding the world of Brandnew Boy to include many different game genres.
Generally speaking 3D action games of this sort on iOS are known for having control schemes that range between slightly annoying at best, to those that are otherwise often the biggest challenge to overcome in the game itself. However, Brandnew Boy has avoided all this – without sacrificing any depth – with a control scheme that is both intuitive and perfectly functional. How did your team come up with the game’s unusual, but extremely effective, control scheme?
Thank you very much for your great comment about the control scheme. In the beginning stages of development, we tested various methods such as the Virtual D-Pad, tilting and so on for moving and attacking but for action games on the mobile device we thought using the Virtual D-Pad and other methods would actually be more bad than good, therefore; we decided on finding a new control scheme that would not sacrifice the overall game play. So we thought that simply tapping and swiping would allow players to enjoy the game fully because those are familiar and intuitive actions that everyone knows of. Looking at the total development period, we spent about 1/3 of the time or 2 months testing and tuning the controls to be more compatible to today’s standards in mobile gaming. But after launching the game to many countries, we are monitoring the player’s requests and plan on developing more controls to match the needs and wants by gamers in other countries.
Without spoiling anything about how the game ends for those who haven’t played it yet, I want to point out that the game’s ending has left me with many questions about the hero and the worlds involved. Will there be new episodes to the story released in the future to continue the plot, and if so will they be updates for the base game or sold as separate games themselves? Also, what’s this I’ve read about there being a playable female character in the future on the official facebook page?
Instead of updating the story or adding more episodes, we feel that we should focus more on creating exciting gameplay. Presently, for the users of Brandnew Boy we need to make a decision about adding more content to the story or by releasing a different title. However we do feel the need to continue developing an interesting story for our players. Regarding the female character, in the 1st or 2nd week of June we are planning to update the game with a new game mode and female character. I don’t want to give away all the secrets for the new game mode but I can give you a hint. The new game mode will be separate from the scenario mode and will be released as an independent game that will focus more on the game’s charming features :) But that’s not all, in the future we will be releasing more updates that include more characters, items, modes and a fantastic multiplayer game mode.
How did your team come up with the song that plays during the game’s opening menu? A lot of iOS games I’ve seen so far have music that is passable in serving the purpose of keeping things from sounding too silent, but they haven’t had any tunes that immediately stick with me in a powerful way. However, the opening song – with its heavy use of saxophones – immediately grabbed my attention and I sometimes found myself sitting at the title screen just to listen to it longer (for those who haven’t played the game yet, it’s also the song featured in the game’s trailer).
It makes us happy and proud to see that our hard work is really paying off! We wanted the music to have a catchy tune and be dynamic, so with the exciting beats we think it matches the game really well. We did our best to make the music match the atmosphere for each stage whether it be peaceful or tense to try to immerse the player into the game. The main BGM was created by a Production Company and we bought the rights to use it in the game. The update in June will add more music to the stages and overall game play in general.
Finally, I’ve noticed that Brandnew Boy seems to be the only game you’ve made so far. I know that you’re currently hard at work making more content for Brandnew Boy at the moment, and I am eagerly looking forward to the upcoming fruits of those efforts, but do you have any ideas for other great iOS games – not directly related to Brandnew Boy – at the moment? If so, would they happen to be more 3D action games or something from an entirely different genre?
Presently, the staff in my studio is divided into developing Brandnew Boy and another strategy game. For the team dedicated to Brandnew Boy they are focused on the update and getting the full potential of the Unreal Engine 3. The strategy game part is working on a global fantasy tactical card game which is currently still in development. As an original IP, expanding and growing Brandnew Boy is Oozoo Inc’s main strategy. In addition, our goal as a game company is to create new and exciting games.
So there you have it, folks, a look into the minds of the talented team of programmers that brought us the fantastic Brandnew Boy. Furthermore, it seems we have many exciting upcoming game play modes – as well other game genres set in the same universe – to look forward to. We would like to thank both Oozoo Inc for taking the time from their awesome work to answer our questions, as well as AppsAsia for helping to translate everything. For more information on upcoming Brandnew Boy news, you can check out both its official website and Facebook page.