We’re terribly sorry for the long silence since the website launched earlier this year. But now we’re back and we are proud to present you the first regular chronerion entertainment webisode (Watch the pilot here), in which the main-motivation behind setting up the chronerion entertainment project is explained.
Transcript of Webisode #001 – Call To Adventure
I don’t remember if Maniac Mansion was the first point-and-click adventure I ever played. But I do know that it left a far deeper impression than Monkey Island, Indiana Jones or any of the other big adventure game classics.
I must have been eleven or twelve years old and already had gathered some experience with video games – when Maniac Mansion was a real culture shock to me. Abstract and imaginative games like Super Mario Brothers, The Legend of Zelda and Tetris were everything I knew back then – I wasn’t in the least prepared for what awaited me in Maniac Mansion.
Suddenly video games weren’t simply entertaining, colourful games of skill with abstract graphics anymore. All of a sudden video games were capable of telling a proper story with proper characters in a world that seemed lively and invited you to explore and experiment. I was immediately downright obsessed with Maniac Mansion.
The number of gameplay possibilities in Maniac Mansion really fascinates me to this day. It was downright mind-blowing to me that a video game allowed me to play a record on a turntable, record the output on a cassette and play it again at another location. The concept of using verbs to directly interact with the environment, as if I was inside the game myself and commanded the charactes like some kind of director, made a lasting impression on me – and forever changed my perception of what video games can be.
Maniac Mansion was released in 1987 and was developed by Lucasfilm Games, who later renamed themselves to Lucas Arts and created numerous other immortal point-and-click adventure classics. Even though Maniac Mansion is regarded as a groundbreaking milestone in video game history and influenced most adventure games that came after it, it remains a pretty unique game until today. Hardly any adventure game after it offered a similarly open world that invited you to explore and experiment as much.
Later games concentrated more on telling increasingly elaborate stories, led the player through an increasing number of locations und let him undergo storylines that were interesting, but also increasingly linear. But no other game that I know of took up Maniac Mansion’s formula again, no other point-and-click adventure threw the player into a spatially very limited environment where he then had to reach the goal of the game by the creative solving of puzzles and tasks and intelligent experimentation and interaction with the environment.
When adventure games were “dead” at the end of the 1990s, I lost sight of the genre for some years. Sometime later at the end of the 2000s I was grabbed by nostalgia and thanks to ScummVM I played some of the old games again and occupied myself with adventure games in general again.
To my great surprise the adventure game genre wasn’t as dead as I had assumed anymore, quite the reverse was the case! In recent years numerous new titles were released and at least since the Secret Files games, the establishment of Daedalic Entertainment, Wadjet Eye Games and the revised new versions of the first two Monkey Island games it was obvious the genre had undergone a renaissance.
But I wasn’t happy. Although the new point-and-click adventure titles were technologically flawless, full of creativity and made with love, somehow they didn’t satisfy me. The stories were exciting, the graphics were beautiful, the locations were exotic. But none of these games was anywhere near to what I loved and enjoyed about Maniac Mansion 20 years ago.
And with that an irrepressible wish grew inside me: “If nobody else is doing it, I’ll have to do it myself.” It became clear to me that I will do anything within my power to realize my vision, no matter how long it would take. My decision was made; I am going to make the game of my dreams – no matter the cost.
That was my ”Call to Adventure”. This decision now dates back exactly four years and just about anything I undertook in these last four years served my goal of making this game. This was the reason why I started to work in the video games industry, why I established chronerion entertainment, and why I now speak to you and produce these webisodes.
It is obvious to me that I cannot reach this goal alone but that I depend on my team, my supporters and of course the support of you, the fans of adventure games. Thank you very much, see you in the next webisode!