This project interviews the developers of new indie games that interest you. This time, we will deliver a mini-interview to the developers of the mini-game puzzle collection Last Call BBS , which was developed by Zachtronics and started early access for PC / Mac / Linux on July 5th.
This work is a puzzle game where you play various mini games using a retro PC. A total of eight games are included, including those that assemble plastic models and those that operate food factories in the world 700 years later as in the 20th century. Japanese is not supported at the time of writing the article.
Last Call BBS is being delivered in early access for 2,050 yen.
――First of all, please introduce yourself. What is your favorite game? **
Hello Zach & Matthew Seiji Burns (Zach & Matthew). Zach Barth and Matthew Seiji Burns will be happy to answer your questions. Zach is the creative director and lead designer for this film. Matthew was a writer, sound designer and composer.
Neither of them has a favorite game, but Matthew has been enjoying ELDEN RING lately, and Zach is playing a game called Rocksmith. (Both are quite different types of games from the ones we make!)
――Why did the development of this work start? **
Zach & Matthew We were interested in exploring the world of personal computers in the 90’s. Both of us feel nostalgic in this era of great potential and future. The future is unclear, and when you get a new computer, a new world opens up in front of you! This was our theme.
As a puzzle game, I was originally interested in the idea of a factory game that deals with various products such as food, electrical appliances, and daily necessities. However, it was difficult to make an interesting puzzle except for the food part. Therefore, we focused on the food part, and the 20th Century Food Court in this work was completed. Other games were based on other ideas.
――Please tell us the features of this work. **
Zach & Matthew This is a collection of 8 games to play on your 90’s desktop computer. Many of them are difficult puzzle games, similar to the type we previously made as Zachtronics. There are two solitaire card games and one action puzzle game.
There is also a type of game that makes a robot plastic model (Gundam model). By playing each game, you can tell the story of the creator and how the narrator came across the game.
――What kind of people do you want this work to be played by? **
Zach & Matthew I want people who are interested in computers in the 90’s to enjoy this work, regardless of whether they were actually touching computers at that time or just read about those days somewhere.
Also, this game is not an action game, and you don’t have to think too much about difficult things. We often jokes that our games are for programmers and engineers who can’t quit their jobs when they get home. If you like difficult puzzles like the Zachtronics games of the past, you’ll be happy with this one as well.
――How long do you plan for early access? What kind of elements will be added in the future? **
Zach & Matthew We are planning a short period and hope to end Early Access by the beginning of September. We have no plans to add new games, but popular ones may be expanded. For example, I was surprised that Steed Force Hobby Studio, a game for making robot plastic models (Gundam models), would not be so popular.
――Please tell us your impressions of releasing it as Early Access. **
Zach & Matthew We basically have Early Access in our games. It’s useful because it allows players to find bugs that they couldn’t find during development. You can also collect data for adjusting the difficulty of each puzzle. But we basically try to complete the basics of the game before Early Access. This is to end early access immediately and officially release it.
――Are there any works that influenced this work? **
The Zach & Matthew action puzzle game HACK * MATCH was influenced by Money Puzzle Exchanger and Magical Drop, but the other games included in this game are especially specific. I haven’t done it.
――Are there any plans to support Japanese for this work? Is volunteer translation possible? **
Zach & Matthew Japanese is not supported at this time, but I would like to add it if desired. If you would like to cooperate, please contact us. (I’m sorry, but please use English)
――Did the new coronavirus have any impact on development? **
Zach & Matthew Yes, there was. We are a team of five, but we used to work together in the office. In the middle of development, we started working from home. This required a lot of adjustments, which often took longer than planned.
Actually, this is also the reason why I decided to make a collection of small games called this work, not one big game. You can work on development for each game with a small team.
――Is it okay to distribute and monetize this work? **
Zach & Matthew Yes, of course!
――Please give a final message to Japanese readers. **
Zach & Matthew This work was influenced by the personal computer of the 90’s. It also includes Japanese computers like the PC-98. Our aim is not to reproduce them exactly, but to give players the feeling of experiencing another history that did not exist. I hope you enjoy it!
–thank you very much. **