In case you’ve been living under a rock for the last week or so, you’ll have missed the incredibly exciting news about Thimbleweed Park – a point and click adventure game currently under development with Kickstarter funding. The game is a curious story about two washed-up detectives called in to investigate a dead body found in the river just outside of town. Switching between five playable characters, you uncover the dark, satirical and bizarre world of Thimbleweed Park. The Kickstarter was a great success – the team has already surpassed their initial goal and are busy working on their stretch goals – largely because Thimbleweed Park comes from the same legendary, epic, epoch-defining adventure game makers that brought us the legendary, epic, epoch-defining LucasArts adventure classics Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion (to name but two!).
Those legendary epoch-definers are, of course, Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick, who were kind enough to take the time to chat with XP4T about their new venture.
XP4T: Wow, so how does it feel to have surpassed your initial funding goal on Kickstarter, and what made you choose Kickstarter to fund this project in the first place?
Gary: It feels great, we’re amazed and very grateful for the outpouring of support, both financially as well as the enthusiastic response we’re receiving from the audience.
Ron: This is the kind of game that could only be funded by people who love Point & Click adventures. I don’t think any publisher would fund it, which is fine. We’d rather have the flexibility to make exactly the game we want and promised.
XP4T: What made you go with not one, not two, but FIVE playable characters?
Gary: It pretty much harkens back to Maniac Mansion, where playing with multiple characters was one of the unique features of our first SCUMM game.
XP4T: Will you be using the SCUMM engine for Thimbleweed Park? If so, have you had to make any major updates or adjustments to satisfy the savvy modern gamer?
Ron: We’re not going to be using SCUMM for a couple of reasons. The first is just legal. We don’t own it. Also, there were a lot of tools that made up the SCUMM system and I don’t know where I’d find them all again. The biggest reason is that there are some small changes we want to make that only a more modern system can do. SCUMM was a great system, but it has become dated over the years. But our hope is that the game still feels like you’re playing a SCUMM game.
XP4T: Can we expect classy 80’s humor and witty writing from Thimbleweed Park?
Ron: I’m not sure what you’d call “80’s humor”. It will have the same kind of humor found in Maniac Mansion and Monkey Island.
XP4T: So was it a no-brainer to team up on this project?
Ron: In some ways, yes. Over the years, we’ve never both been free at the same time. It seems like a natural fit again. Hopefully we won’t hate each other 18 months from now.
Gary: Ron and I also have very specific roles when it comes to development; he has no desire to create art and I certainly have none to try programming.
XP4T: Can you expound upon the “Multiple Endings”? Is there more than one way to beat the game?
Ron: Like Maniac Mansion, each character will have their own ending, and depending on who solves the puzzles and with whom, the endings will change.