Graham Smith on Guacamelee!

By Jorge Figueiredo - July 22nd, 2012


For those of you who are living in a burrito, Guacamelee! is a, as Drinkbox Studios describes it: “Metroid-vania style action-platformer set in a magical Mexican inspired world”. For those of you who have played some of Drinkbox’s other games, you already know that whatever that team of geniuses creates is gold.

We had a quick chat with Drinkbox’s own Graham Smith about their upcoming game.

TT: Why Mexican? What was the draw of Mexican legends and culture?

GS: The general story and title of the game was initially pitched by our animator Augusto. Augusto was born and raised in Mexico, and the game was conceived during a period of nostalgia for his home.

When the team heard the pitch we saw a huge potential pool of cool stuff to draw from. There are many Mexican beliefs and folklore that the rest of North America is unaware of, and some of this stuff is very unique and interesting.

I really dig this art style.

How will you use this in ways that are different than other games?

We’re trying to stay authentic to the Mexican folklore that we are using, but at the same time put a comedic spin on things.

One example of this is Uay Chivo. In our game, the player will encounter a goat that can change into a grumpy old man. This man, Uay Chivo, often grants the player new powers and teaches how to use them.

How far did you dip the cup into the font that is Mexican Culture?

There is a lot of content to draw from in Mexican Culture, and it won’t be possible to use all of it, so we have tried to use some of the more obscure and humorous folklore to inspire our story and characters in the game. Things like Uay Chivo, X’Tabay, Alebrije’s, Chupacabara, etc.

Throwdowns in this game look to be pretty epic! Bueno!

How “open” is “open world”?

The world will slowly open up to the player as they gain new powers. At first there are some restrictions on where the player is allowed to travel, but at about halfway through the story the player will have enough moves/powers to be able to go anywhere in the world they have previously visited. Re-traversing through old areas will be encouraged by having secrets there that were not accessible the first time the player traveled through the area.

How has interest been so far?

Interest has been very high for the game so far. It feels like people really want a humourous 2d co-op brawling/platforming MetroidVania game. People also seem to be pretty keen about the Vita/PS3 cross-save feature that we have planned.

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