Bug Fables, a new RPG from Dangen Entertainment and Moonsprout Games, might look and feel very familiar to a series of games that had its most beloved entries on the Nintendo 64 and GameCube. It may only be available on PC at the moment, but it could be a big hit once it comes to consoles next year. We got the chance to learn a little more about the development of this insect filled RPG by talking to lead developer José Fernando Gracia about inspirations and design choices.
IndieHangover: Everyone I show this to before they see battle gameplay says it reminds them of Hollow Knight. So why were bugs chosen as the characters?
José Fernando Gracia: Interestingly enough, there wasn’t a particular reason why we chose bugs. I didn’t like them much before working on Bug Fables! My friends and I used to draw comics all the time, and we really fell in love with the original ones for the game. Vi, Kabbu and Leif just wouldn’t leave our minds! So, it’s about bugs. It was a great chance to research and learn a lot about nature in the meantime.
IH: Bug Fables seems to be heavily inspired by Paper Mario, which is great since many fans feel the series has seen a decline in quality since after The Thousand-Year Door. While a handful of indie titles have borrowed certain elements from Paper Mario, Bug Fables seems to borrow a lot more. Do you fear that some fans will see this as a Paper Mario clone due to not being connected to the original IP, or do you think more will see it as a kind of spiritual successor the original duology?
IH: What are some other games that helped influence Bug Fables and how?
IH: So there are only seven chapters in Bug Fables. How did you decide how many chapters there would be and what steps did you take to make sure the story pacing worked out?
IH: So besides the main quest, Bug Fables features over 15 optional bosses, which is a rather large number of them. What influenced your decision to have this many and would you say they’re mostly for players looking for an extra challenge, or just optional battles that any player can obtain good rewards from?
We didn’t really plan to end up with so many. But we got a bit carried away!
IH: What was the biggest challenge during development?
IH: With a PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch release planned for next year, are there any plans for exclusive content, and are there any plans for additional content in general?