Interview: Adam Milecki on Rubicon Zone Warning

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Rubicon Zone Warning is a unique action/puzzle game by independent developer Adam Milecki. It’s available for download right this minute on the PC for the reasonable price of FREE and has you saving parallel worlds by disarming “metaphysical” bombs.

As the player you’ll be hacking time and space in order to defuse said explosives and you’ll do this from the inside of the bombs using your consciousness that’s in the form of a rocket ship.  It’s all very meta.

Adam was gracious enough to answer a few quick interview questions via email.

Read the back and forth after the break then download the game.  Not necessarily in that order.  There’s also a gameplay trailer at the end of our talk.

Q: You’ve got a new game out. Tell us the premise.

In Rubicon Zone Warning, you take the role of Abel “Flip” Stargazer, an ace “test pilot” in one of NASA’s first astral-hacking experiments. After hacking a parallel dimension, mysterious “bombs” appeared to destroy entire dimensions. Flip must disarm them!

Q: Where did the off-the-wall idea come from for this game?

As do many of my ideas, the idea for Rubicon Zone Warning came to me while trying to sleep one night. The idea of disarming a bomb from the inside and the idea of the sword were there from the start. A lot was added over the course of the game’s development, but the core ideas remained.
Q: How much has the game changed story-wise over the long development life?

Originally, the game had no story and had an electronic circuitry aesthetic. As soon as the astral-hacking idea came to me, the story quickly built in my head.

 

Q: What were you goals in terms of gameplay?

For a long time now, I’ve wanted to create games that were unlike anything else. Aspects of the games I make may resemble mechanics from other games, but as a whole, the games I make should be almost incomparable to any other game.

 

Q: Did you make any major gameplay changes over time? If so, tell us about them.

Not really. My original concept had the player having much more limited control over the vessel, but this changed once I began development.
Folks who want to know more behind-the-scenes info about the game’s development may want to check out the donation letter included with the donor’s bonus content.

 

Q: What would you say sets the game apart from the crowd; what’s the big selling point?
I really feel I managed to achieve the aforementioned uniqueness with Rubicon Zone Warning.
Q: Were there other games you looked to for inspiration when you were still developing the game?
Yes, perhaps too many to list, but the way the sword behaves in the game was directly inspired by the shoot-’em-up, Radiant Silvergun. It’s funny, considering that Rubicon Zone Warning isn’t even close to a shoot-’em-up.

 

Screenshots of gameplay

Gameplay

 

Q: How long did it take you to complete the game from concept to release?

It’s hard to give an exact length of time. I never had a strict schedule working on the game, and usually only worked on it when I had the urge. Sometimes I went months without touching it. I often completely recoded parts of the game. I would estimate the game is almost a decade old! I wouldn’t recommend making a game this way, but I learned so much, and I’m very proud of what Rubicon Zone Warning became. I’m confident my next project will go more smoothly.

 

Q: How can folks get their hands on the game?

It’s freeware and is available on the game’s site. I’m also offering some neat bonus goodies to anyone who makes a PayPal donation via that same site.
Q: Any plan to bring this to consoles (handheld or otherwise)?  It seems to be getting easier to bring games to consoles with this latest generation.

Rubicon Zone Warning began its development way before that was a common thing for indie devs to do. Because of that, it uses a lot of code that isn’t very port-friendly. It’s possible there may be a Rubicon Zone Warning on other platforms down the line, but I doubt it will be this one.

 

Q: As an indie developer, what is your take from the outside looking in on the game industry in general?

We’ve reached the point where pretty much anyone can make and distribute their own games. It’s both wonderful and terrible. There’s a lot of amazing games we’d never see without this new ease of development. Alternatively, there’s a lot of half-hearted unfinished games and clones of clones of clones. It’s created a lot of noise that makes it hard for gamers to find the games that really matter. That said, when great games from small developers continue to rise to the top, it makes me feel a lot better.

 

You can follow Adam on his twitter account @tidegear


Maurice
Original surviving founder of Fanboy Confidential, the podcast, and this supporting website. This is the fruit of his labor, created while on his off days from saving orphaned children from forest fires.

Only some of this is true.

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