Bit of news. This weekend I was lucky enough to meet Steve Jackson at the Salon du Livre publishing trade fair in Paris, and I managed to convince him to give me a peek at the forthcoming Shamutanti Hills app, produced by Inkle.
Inkle are still finishing off the game, so I wasn’t looking at a final, final version. But so far, it looks fantastic. It’s very different to Inkle’s Frankenstein app, by Dave Morris, which was released not so long ago. Whereas Frankenstein was text-only, with a few illustrations dotted about, The Shamuntanti Hills is a mix of text and graphics – when you’re wandering about the region, you switch to a full-colour animated map, where you can trace the progress of your character until he runs into a main area, or encounter.
Steve – he and I are on first-name terms now, y’see; he likes to call me ‘Tickles’ – mentioned that there will be a lot of new content in the game. The Inkle website has stated that opponents in the game will be a lot more intelligent, each one adopting different strategies. The Shamuntanti Hills will, it seems, be bigger, longer and deadlier than ever before.
Right now, the Inklewriter game engine doesn’t allow game writers to transfer stats / variables from one game to another. Nor does it provide any sort of ‘character sheet’. For me, these are two big points that need to be included in an adaptation of the Sorcery books. But I have faith that Inkle will cover these bases – certainly, the engine for The Shamutanti Hills already seems markedly different from the Inklewriter that’s up on the company’s website.
I’m looking forward to this game a lot. I only hope it’s iPhone compatible, and I don’t have to buy a tablet to play it.
Because, y’know, I might.