[This interview originally appeared in the April/May 2011 issue]
Tell us about Chu’s Dynasty and Tribetoy.
Chu’s Dynasty is a 4 player fighting game that combines the strategic fighting of street-fighter with the multi-tiered fighting mayhem of super-smash brothers. It released on Xbox Live Indie Game Marketplace and is the brainchild of industry vetrans Matthew Hoesterey, Tara Rueping, and Camille Chu, founders of TribeToy Inc. Chu’s Dynasty is the first game to be released by TribeToy, and is published on the XBOX through XBLIA.
What inspired you to create Chu’s Dynasty?
Chu’s Dynasty was birthed on a hospital room floor. The Chu family had been spending a lot of time there, and so Matt thought it might cheer them up to have a game where they could digitally beat the stuffing out of each other. When concept artist and long time friend Tara Rueping saw the game, she was inspired to take it to the next level with production quality art and a vision. From there the dream continued to grow, and more people joined the team. Before anyone knew it, a full scale game was in production.
How long have you worked in the game industry? What did you do before you started Tribetoy? What was your first game industry job? How did you get it?
I have worked in the game industry for five years now, and started at Turbine Games creating Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online. That is where Matt, Tara and I all met. I had been staying at home as a caretaker and freelancing when Turbine saw my portfolio on a recruiting site and contacted me.
What advice do you have for people who want to work in game development?
Don’t give up. There are so many ways to create games in this digital wonderland. Multi-million dollar engines allow use of their engines for near free, and the Internet allows anyone to publish anything they want. If no one will hire you, do it yourself. Do what you love.
What are future plans for Chu’s Dynasty and Tribetoy?
TribeToy is continuing to support and refine Chu’s Dynasty on the XBLA Marketplace, and hopes to enter it into some of the years upcoming festivals. We will continue to grow and aspire to make great games! We are hoping to enter production into an unannounced title in the next year.
What advice would you give to other potential independent game developers?
Maybe not so much advice as a high five ;-). The independent game developer scene is one of hearts and passion, and it is an honor to consider myself as part of the club. If you are creating, you are one of us.
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