Indie developers are the starving artists of the video-game world, often brilliant and innovative, but also misunderstood, underfunded and more prone to writing free-form poetry on their LiveJournals. We at Joystiq believe no one deserves to starve, and many indie developers are entitled to a fridge full of tasty, fulfilling media coverage, right here. This week, Denis Tambovcev of Russian developer TrainYard Interactive asks for 20 minutes of your time with his free game, Process, and all you have to do is step foot on a speeding train bound for certain disaster. Interested?
The game is called Process. It's a game project in the adventure genre; its story takes place in several subway train cars. In 20 minutes a disaster will happen -- the train will jump the tracks at full speed. The gameplay takes exactly the time designated before the crash. During this period in grim, dimly lit interiors, combining cyberpunk and industrial aesthetics, the player is to figure out the situation, try all possible means of rescue and in the end take a brand new look at the portrayed events. It's a game about predetermination of events and the subjectiveness of perception of the surrounding world.
Technologically it's a classic first-person adventure: panoramic locations with the capability of free, 360-degree view and discreet movement between the panoramas through a point-and-click interface.
Do you consider Process to be a "game" in the classic sense of the word, or more of an interactive experience?
There isn't all that much interactivity in Process to call it a full-fledged game. The stress is made on forming an emotional background. The project is closer to an interactive installation, an experiment. The idea is to immerse the player into the atmosphere of inevitability, feeling of a dream and irreality of what's happening, using the audiovisual environment.
What inspired you to make Process?
We had a wish to try to make a game environment inside moving transport. While designing cars of a train, different interior units and utilities, the project idea began to form. That's to say a concept revealed itself from environment design and then it gave a vector of future development.
Anything you'd do differently?
I think that some graphic moments could have been done a little differently. But these improvements can be engaged to infinity.
Why develop independently, rather than work for an established company?
We worked remotely in our free time. This is a very interesting experience. We work for our pleasure and define the direction -- so we can experiment in different parts, such as gameplay, graphics style, etc.
Do you see yourself as part of a larger indie movement?
This feeling evolves. Now we're receiving many comments from a variety of countries -- France, Italy, Germany, USA, Japan and others. Information about the project distributes so fast through all kind of indie media that we couldn't collect it all.
Process is mainly a kind of experiment, not only conceptually. We've found a production cycle, formed the team, having experience in promotion. Going forward it will be new projects, including cross-platform, free and commercial one with different distribution approaches.
Process is free, it's fast and apparently, it's fun. Give it a try on Desura or IndieDB -- you already know how it ends, so what's the harm in a little high-speed train wreck?
If you'd like to have your own shot at converting our readers into fans, email jess [at] joystiq [dawt] com, subject line "The Joystiq Indie Pitch." Still haven't had enough? Check out the Pitch archives.