The best one hundred levels were chosen for a second game, Magicats: Best Of. The game was crowd-developed—a new concept in the world of gaming–, and level designers were offered 50% of the game’s revenue. The whole concept of a crowd-developed game and such an altruistic and artistic endeavor got the attention of KeenGamer.
Q. How did the idea to make a crowd-developed game surface? Were there any special difficulties such as getting level designers on board or making a cohesive game?
A. We have two games for now: Crazy Dreamz: MagiCats Edition and Crazy Dreamz: Best Of. Since MagiCats Edition launched in the Steam Early Access program in September; the game's enthusiastic community has crafted more than 20,000 levels. When we saw how impressive some of the community levels were, we wanted to find a way to thank people for their hard work. We chose a method that worked for us: by creating a new game! Talented players from all over the world worked together with our studio to create a crowd-developed game.
It’s not easy to communicate with players from all over the world. There were problems with languages, time zones and even different cultures. We used every channel including phone calls, emails, and chatting on Steam or Discord to make it happen! The key point is that we need to make people trust that we are doing something meaningful and helpful!
Q. How did the level creators react about having their games put into Crazy Dreamz: Best Of?
A. We made Crazy Dreamz: Best Of a “Fair Game”, which means the level creators share 50% of the game’s revenue. With this concept in mind, they are very happy to receive concrete financial rewards for their creativity and hard work.
When the community got the news, they became more motivated to create amazing levels. A lot of our players were surprised about what we planned to do, but all of them were very happy about this project.
It’s crazy to think that our youngest creator is a 10 year old girl who used her mother’s account. Informed by the news of being selected, her mother let us talk with her daughter directly on the phone and gave her encouragement. It’s very heartwarming.
Q. Crazy Dreamz: Best Of has levels improved based on feedback. How are levels improved and who does it, you guys or the level designers?
A. For most levels, we didn’t change much, just added some decorations in order to keep the originality and added some checkpoints to make levels easier. We only improve the levels to make sure they are not too hard or too easy. This task is taken care of by our professional level designers.
Q. Will MagiCats be a franchise, or will you guys make future games based on new concepts?
A. We are all fans of cats, so MagiCats will definitely become a franchise. It’s only the beginning, and we're improving the MagiCats world every day.
Q. Will you consider making more crowd-developed games in the future?
A. Yes. Crazy Dreamz: Best Of is our first step. With more players’ creations in MagiCats Edition and gaining maturity and experience in the process of making our first crowd-developed game, we will be able to produce similar games and offer a brand new gaming experience.
The number one strength of the game and what people love is the diversity of the levels, so, we plan to improve and expand the building options to make the levels even crazier.
Q. Do you believe crowd-developed games could play a big role in the future of gaming?
A. Definitely. We're now entering an era where video games with user-generated content are not just a way to extend games' lives anymore. Crowd-developed games will be a big trend in the future to offer more possibility and diversity. Instead of just companies or professionals, thousands of players can create and develop the game they want and think others will like! We’ll see how far peoples’ creativity can fly!
Q. What was the inspiration behind MagiCats? I noticed elements from famous franchises like Sonic and Donkey Kong Country, but MagiCats had a unique touch and a healthy blend of puzzles, combat, and exploration.
A. In the gameplay area, the inspiration behind Magicats came from Mario and Rayman. Graphically, it's more Rayman, Wonder boy, Donkey Kong, and Dofus. However, the MagiCats world is different because players have created its unique universe.
Q. Do you already have any plans for any future games/projects?
A. Crazy Dreamz: MagiCats Edition will never be finished. We would like to keep the possibility of limitless creation for our players and concoct the easiest-to-use game-maker in the future! To make this dream come true, we keep polishing the game every day and never stop thinking about new features, new content, and other improvements. We even have a box in the office for collecting new ideas and check it every week.
Furthermore, the idea of building other different “Best Of” MagiCat games never stops. More new creations, new features, new skins…so many new things are on the way. One more important thing is that our players can see their new ideas spring to stardom directly in MagiCats Edition. If the level is cool enough, it will be selected in our next “Best Of” game!
Q. What do you envision for the future of gaming and indie gaming. Is there anything that worries or excites you about the rapidly changing industry?
A. Currently, we are seeing more and more games coming out every day. It’s getting very easy to create your own game, even alone. Some people think it’s bad since good games are now hidden in “thousands of crap” titles.
Personally, we think it’s the best thing that could ever happen. People have awesome talents and we are trying to give them the easiest-to-use tools to let them build their own stuff.
Q. What are some of the Crazy Dreamz developers favorite games?
A. This question caused a hot debate in our office 🙂 (by the way, thanks for destroying our productivity for a day). We have a long list including Final Fantasy, Terraria, Sonic Mania, and Dark Souls. Most of them inspired us and make us want to produce great games that can also positively affect other players!
However, for the entire team, we got one unique answer: Super Smash Bros. We play it together during the lunch time and even after work. It is not just fun, but also improves our team’s spirit!