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The Joystiq Indie Pitch: A.R.E.S.

Justin McElroy

Being a giant, beloved video game site has its downsides. For example, we sometimes neglect to give independent developers our coverage love (or loverage, if you will) as we get caught up in AAA, AAAA or the rare quintuple-A titles. To remedy that, we're giving indies the chance to create their own loverage and sell you, the fans, on their studios and products. This week we talk with Nenin Ananbanchachai, managing director of Extend Interactive, whose Dream.Build.Play first place winner A.R.E.S.: Extinction Agenda launches today on Direct2Drive and Gamersgate.

How did you or your company get started?
Almost everyone in Extend Studio knew each other from university. We have participated and won many game contests in Thailand. After our graduation, we set up our own game company and started working on A.R.E.S. as our first title.

Why did you want to make games?
We'd played many games when we were young, and some of them really inspired us. We want to make something unique, fun and different in our game.

Gallery: A.R.E.S.: Extinction Agenda | 21 Photos

Why be independent rather than try to work for someone else?
We believe that the best way to do what we love is to be independent. This way we can focus on our goal which is to create high quality, fun-to-play titles.

What's your game called, and what's it about?
Our game is called A.R.E.S.: Extinction Agenda. It is the first chapter in a full-featured, episodic, action-packed side-scroller, in the traditions of retro classics, where you play as Ares, a combat robot sent on a mission to rescue task force members who were trapped while conducting an investigation. Annihilate countless robots, recycle their parts to make incredible items, including weapon upgrades and take on gigantic bosses in 3D environment side-scroller.

Do you feel like you're making the game you always wanted to play?
We felt like that at the beginning, but after we got a lot of feedback from our friends and players, we started to change it more from our original thought. But we think that it's made our game more fun.

How long did it take you to create?

We spent nearly twenty months before we could release this title. It is quite a long time, but we really had a great fun while we were creating it.

What are you proudest of about your game?

The massive boss fight that gives players the old school game experience and distinct retro feel. It is one of the best killer points in our game.

What one thing would you tell someone to convince them to get your game?
If you are wanting an action-packed side-scrolling game that gives you a distinct retro feel that you cannot find in today's AAA blockbusters, A.R.E.S. is here for you.

What's next?
Our plan is to release the Xbox version of A.R.E.S. in the next few months. And after that, we will make more downloadable contents which players can download for free. The next episode is also in our plan.

Want to check out A.R.E.S. for yourself? Look for it on Direct2Drive and GamersGate! If you'd like to have your own shot at converting our readers into fans, email justin aat joystiq dawt com, subject line "The Joystiq Indie Pitch." Still haven't had enough? Check out the Pitch archives.

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