An Interview With the Developers of YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG
YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG is a stylish RPG coming to the Switch this year, and we got in touch with Ackk Studios to learn more about it. Check out one of the trailers for a taste of what this strange game is like, and then read on for our interview.
From its style, YIIK brings to mind games like Persona and EarthBound, but the demo description also called out Paper Mario, Wild Arms, and Lufia 2. What inspirations from these games went into YIIK?
I really like this question! Wild Arms is essentially a spaghetti western remake of Lufia 2. Story beats, interface, and gameplay. We really liked how both games had a unique take on the RPG dungeon. So, in Final Fantasy you essentially have hallways and mazes, which works fine… but Lufia 2 and Wild Arms step it up by adding tools, which are essentially items you can use to interact with the world. We wanted our dungeons to be unlike Earthbound/Final Fantasy/Dragon Quest where it’s all just about finding the exit… so we looked to these games to give us ideas.
As for Earthbound, we loved the tone of the text and the bright vibrant but also scary world. So we borrowed elements of that… Paper Mario inspired the mini games that we use in combat.
Persona was more influential to the plot than Earthbound as it felt dirty to try and make something as pure as that series. That requires a certain genius we dare not imitate.
What does the title mean?
YIIK is a unique spelling of y2k. In the late 90s there was a fear that due to a programming error computers would cease to function on january 1st 2000… they called this the y2k bug. The game uses this paranoia as the setting.
Has your vision for YIIK changed at all during its development, or is it still pretty much the game you initially imagined?
The gameplay evolved, but the story remained the same. We learned a lot about game design from conventions and user feedback, so that always forced us to adapt… the gameplay was actually a lot more complex when we started, but as we saw how long it was taking users to get through the areas we just selected our best ideas and stream lined it.
Is it still coming to the Wii U?
Unfortunately we moved development to the Nintendo Switch due to circumstances beyond our control…
Would you describe YIIK as a very story-driven game?
Yes, but not necessarily in the way where you’ll have to watch a BUNCH of cutscenes… We try and tell stories through the dungeons and develop the cast that way.
Finally, is there anything else you’d like to tell our readers about YIIK?
I would like everyone to expect the unexpected. The game is certainly something unique, and I hope you join us for the many surprises we have planned for people who try and tackle the game!
We’re happy we had this chance to learn more about YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG. What do you think of it? Share your thoughts on YIIK in the comments.