Indie developer Upfall Studios has started porting their rogue-like dungeon crawler Quest of Dungeons to Wii U and Nintendo 3DS and hopes to have it out in 2016.
Quest of Dungeons is a new retro-styled 16-bit RPG in the works for Nintendo’s eShop, so we caught up with Upfall Studios’ David Amador, the game’s sole developer based in Lisbon, Portugal, to learn more information about the project.
Originally released on Steam in March 2014, Quest of Dungeons also launched on iOS and Android later that same year. As a result of the game’s growing popularity, fans requested it for consoles. Upfall Studios answered back by releasing it on Xbox One in September 2015. But it doesn’t stop there.
“Around last summer, I was able to get in touch with Nintendo and started discussing getting Quest of Dungeons on Nintendo platforms,” Amador said. “Some time after the Xbox One release I began porting it to Wii U and 3DS. Personally, I always thought the game could be a good fit for Nintendo 3DS … had players asking about it, and [3DS] was the one I was more actively going after. Wii U was something that I wanted, but I was afraid that, due to resources, budget and manpower, I couldn’t make it happen.”
Amador further explained that it’s quite difficult working on ports for two different Nintendo systems, as each one has their own unique capabilities. But after some initial technical research, he was able to figure out how he could make it happen. “Right now the Wii U version is even ahead of the 3DS.”
The initial concept for the game was to make it rogue-like where players could easily pick up and play for quick sessions, while also offering longer play sessions with little complication — even for those new to the genre.
“I also wanted to maintain the turn-based part of it, but without making it too frustrating for players who like more real-time combat,” Amador said. “So it’s a bit of a hybrid. There is no ‘end turn’ [command] and you can keep moving and attacking, but once you stop pressing the buttons, everything pauses. This allows for both types of players to play without feeling frustrated by constraints.”
Amador drew some inspiration from a game called 100 Rogues, which used a gameplay approach he liked. But it’s not all dungeon crawling and monster slaying. “The storyline is heavily influenced but those sort of B-movie types where the story mocks itself, not to be taken very seriously.”
Because of the randomly generated (procedural) nature of the game, players will receive a new experience each time they start. “If the player ends up just wanting to finish it once, it can be finished in couple of hours,” Amador said. “But finishing it with all characters — and the fact that it’s always different and has a mode where you can pick difficulty, the amount of floors and dungeon size — can lead to a lot of replayability, and I’ve seen some players on Steam with dozens and even hundreds of hours.”
For the 3DS version of Quest of Dungeons, a mini map will let players keep track of their position, which really helps when back-tracking or going back to a specific point, Amador explained. The Wii U version of the game will feature Off-TV play and have a map similar to the one for the 3DS version where players can pan, zoom, and have quick access to inventory slots. “All of this is still subject to change, but that is the main idea for now,” Amador added.
Thanks to positive reception and sales, Upfall Studios has been able to port Quest of Dungeons to other platforms. “The game sold enough, allowing me to port it to consoles, which is more expensive to do, and it would be impossible for me to do otherwise, so I guess that is very good,” Amador said. “I’ve mostly reused the money from each platform to make the next one, which has been as exciting as frightening.”
Amador hopes to release the game simultaneously on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS in North America and Europe later this year. We’ll continue to keep tabs on Upfall Studios’ Quest of Dungeons, as it definitely looks to be something many RPG fans will enjoy.