Ten Questions With… Daithi Mc Hugh (Timeslip Softworks)

Ten Questions With… Daithi Mc Hugh (Timeslip Softworks)

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Follow Daithi Mc Hugh on Twitter

Website
Check out the official Deadstone Website

Discussion
Give the developers feedback on the Steam Discussion Page

Purchase
Buy your copy on the Steam Store page 

We recently checked out Deadstone, the debut title from Timeslip Softworks and awarded it a well-deserved 8/10 in our review. We also got in touch with lead developer, Daithi Mc Hugh, to tell us more about this underrated title and what is next for Timeslip Softworks.

Can you give our readers a quick introduction of yourself and the studio?

Hello! My name’s Daithi Mc Hugh, and I’m the lead (by default) developer at Timeslip Softworks. Based in north west Ireland, and operating from state of the art facilities (a 3×3 meter spare bedroom), on ultra high end equipment (a 5 year old PC), Timeslip Softworks’ goal is innovating on the genres of yesteryear to create fresh and compelling gaming experiences.

"This scene is my favourite image from Deadstone, and was create by Lawrence Van Der Merwe." - Daithi

How did the idea for Deadstone come about?

An enjoyment of games which combine multiple genres provided a starting point, and the natural inclination for many developers is to make a game they themselves would enjoy playing.

From playing a lot of shooter and tower defense games, it seemed that a falling point of many shooters was limited depth, while many TD games don’t give the player very much to do once the defenses have been placed. The hope was that the presence of a controllable character would lead to a more engaging experience than commonly found in TD games, while the defense and RPG elements would provide additional depth and variety to the shooter format.

The game has a stronger emphasis on story than other titles in the genre, what prompted this decision?

A lifelong love of fiction, and a few years of hobbyist creative writing are to blame! Ironically, Deadstone’s two separate stories came about as a result of an inability to make a decision on the overall tone of the story.

The game is already quite feature packed, but is there anything you would have liked to add if time and money wasn’t an issue?

Additional enemy types and multiplayer would be strong contenders. Given an additional developer, it would have been really cool to increase the scope of the gameplay from defending a single colony, to a number of colonies, and building additional depth in to the experience with features like research, production, and personal management.

What was the biggest challenge while creating Deadstone?

Staying motivated and committed over the course of several thousand hours is difficult, especially when you are finding your feet with a first game. Technical issues that can leave you at a standstill for days, or even weeks are tough to deal with, but it feels great when you work out a solution!

The perk system adds a lot of depth to the game, can you tell us what some of your favorites are?

It’s hard to beat having a mechanical buddy for back up, so for fun factor, Death Robot. From a purely practical standpoint, Home Alone, which kills the first infected to pass you with a high voltage trap, is top of the list. The most recent update adds a number of survival mode specific perks, and brings the total up 59.

Deadstone is your first Steam release. How did you find the experience?

Releasing on Steam has been a great experience overall. Waking up to an email from Valve to the tune that Deadstone had been Greenlit was one of the best experiences of the almost 2 year journey. I’m not in the least bit ashamed to reveal that I jumped around quite a lot.

What are the future plans for Deadstone/Timeslip Softworks?

Since releasing on Steam, the main emphasis has been prototyping a second game. It’s going to be a completely different type of game, more complex and larger in scope, so a lot of new concepts will need to be learned. Apart from that, a Mac and Linux release for Deadstone is also on the cards, and additional updates may be made to Deadstone at some point in the future.

What is the most unusual thing on your desk right now?

My desk is pretty boring, sorry : ) There’s an old monitor and even older speakers. Oh, and a half eaten Granny Smith apple. Since none of this is particularly scenic, here’s a few very early screenshots of the game I’m currently working on instead.

Anything else you would like to add?

Developing your first game is an exhilarating yet terrifying experience, so I’d really like to thank everyone who supported me: family, friends, game reviewers and youtubers who gave their time to spread the word about Deadstone, and of course, all the gamers from around the world who supported Deadstone. I’m especially grateful to Virgil Wall, of Knuckle Cracker, who apart from making the awesome Creeper World games, was very generous with his time and experience.

We would also like to thank Daithi from our side for the great answers and for the glimpse at his next project. Check out Deadstone on Steam or visit the official website for more information about this title.

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1 Comment

  1. Baerisic December 15, 2014
    Reply

    This one must have slipped under my radar. The developer sounds really down to earth and Im partial to the genre, but I think I’ll wait until the sale to give this a whirl.

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