A recent trend at PAX East has been for many out-of-country developers to show up in Boston and proudly share their games with the press, and of course, the all important consumers. It is now normal to talk to many developers from Canada and Australia, but what I learned this year is that many German developers are now too making their way to Boston. We spoke to the fine folks at KING Art, Nordic Games, and of course Daedalic Entertainment too.

Daedalic Entertainment is a developer and publisher from one of my favorite German cities, Hamburg. Way back on Episode 26 of the podcast, I had the great fortune to interview Poki, who is one of the Creative Directors at Daedalic. If you want to take a trip down memory lane, you can listen to the interview here.

Certainly, many people who like traditional point-and-click adventures will recognize the Daedalic brand. They’re well known for franchises like Edna & Harvey, The Whispered World, and Deponia. However, they’re not just a one trick shop as they also feature franchises like The Blackguards, which is a tactical RPG. To be clear, Daedalic are a powerhouse in the European market, just a quick glance at their Wiki page reveals how busy they’ve been since 2007. At PAX East this year, they had many of their great games on display. Some of the ones which caught our attention were the exploration game AER, the Real-Time tactics game Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun, and the Space Exploration RPG, The Long Journey Home.

the_long_journey_home_gamersinbetaIt was our pleasure on the Saturday of PAX to talk to Andreas Suika, who is the Creative Director and Founder of Daedalic Entertainment West. Andreas and his team of are busy working on The Long Journey Home, which will be released on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. As  I mentioned above, The Long Journey Home is a Space Exploration RPG. When players start the game, they’ll need to select four crew members out of a possible ten. Each crew member has their own stories and personalities. Like in other games, each character will have their own special traits. For example, you might want to select a crew that contains a medic, scientist, and even someone with a military background. All these attributes will come in handy during your journey. Once the crew has been selected, you then make the first light jump for mankind, but everything does not go according to plan. During the initial jump, the ship malfunctioned and you can’t return the same way in which you arrived. The astronauts now need to find a way home, and it’s going to take awhile.

During the course of gameplay, players will travel through a living, procedurally generated galaxy. Due to the name of the game, the developers are striving to create a game where it does feel like it’s going to be a lengthy trek to get back and some of the crew might even get homesick. It will be your job to guide your crew through various quests and make sound decisions, as less then scrupulous people will try to take advantage of you, or worse. You’ll quickly learn the universe is a dangerous place. For example, Andreas introduced us to a rotund space alien who said he was a diplomat of a planet and needed a ride home. After some discussion, we agreed to transport him home but almost immediately we were fired upon by another ship. We quickly realized that our passenger lied to us and he was wanted by this other ship. We handed him over and quickly went on our way.

The Long Journey Home is about charting your own course. You can scan planets, land on them, and discover ancient relics. All of this information will help you better understand the secrets of these distant worlds. You’ll encounter other lifeforms who don’t speak your language. You’ll need to decipher what they’re talking about so you can communicate back with them. You’ll have certain words which you can combine with the hope that they understand you. Each playthrough will be different so therefore the replayability is high for this game. And one cool thing they’ve done is that when you start the game, you’re given a unique code for your playthrough. You can share this code with your friends and they can have access to the same procedurally generated galaxy. While you won’t be in the same session, this will allow you to compare and contrast the choices you’ve made during your playthrough.

While I might not be the exact target audience for The Long Journey Home, a game like this represents what going to a convention like PAX is all about. Navigating the floor and finding a hidden gem that might be outside your comfort zone is the essence to PAX East for me. Prior to this weekend, I couldn’t picture myself playing a Space Exploration RPG. However, after watching the demo and listening to the in-game interactions, I know I absolutely want to play this game. Again, look for The Long Journey Home later this year on PC and then eventually on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.