During our foray around the show floor of Play NYC, we stopped by That Indie Studio, the developers behind the upcoming game The Last Hex. A digital card game with elements of RPGs and roguelikes mixed in, we talked to That Indie Studio's Luigi Guarnuccio to learn some more about the game and its background.
TechRaptor: What were some of the inspirations and influences behind The Last Hex?
Luigi Guarnuccio: There's two kind of ideas that helped us create it. One is board games, all of us here like to play board games like Dominion, Catan, where you're building a deck and you're playing with those cards. And then there's a lot of rogue-like games like Slay the Spire, Hand of Fate, Guild of Dungoneering, that use cards for battling or for events. So we kind of mixed those two together and then RPGs, we all play DnD, we all know the importance of equipment, how that can really change a play or how that can really buck you up so we threw that into the mix and that's kind of like the base factor of the game is using your equipment to make your stuff more powerful. Not just your cards making you powerful but your equipment making your cards powerful.
TechRaptor: What would you say would appeal to people who don't necessarily like card games?
Luigi: With the Last Hex we try to get rid of a lot of that complicated math like with Magic, you have all these counters you have all these monsters you gotta deal with, all these different decks that do different things. We slim it down, you're only fighting one enemy, we do the math for you in the background, all you need to know is that your equipment will change your cards for the better and then go with that. So that's how we introduce people who don't play card games to The Last Hex.
TechRaptor: Tell us about the storyline
Luigi: The story is there is an invading force destroying your land so every move that you make, the enemy makes and destroys a hex. That hex could be a town, it could be an event and so if they take that over you lose that. It's now a battlefield. So you gotta make your way before the army destroys everything in your country and your land to kind of restore them. But then the other thing is, every time you fight on one of those hexes you're fighting on a battlefield, you're fighting the enemy, so you don't actually gain anything from those fights. It's like the first half is building yourself up to be the best version of yourself that you can be, then once you get into the battlegrounds it's how good did you make yourself before that point. Did you make something good enough to make it to the last boss?
TechRaptor: What was the biggest challenge developing The Last Hex?
Luigi: So far the biggest challenge is balancing the cards. With any card game there's hundreds of cards, there's gonna be cards that are better than the others there's cards that aren't gonna be used, but for the vast majority you wanna give players options that won't hinder them too much or options that may not be the best but are still viable. So coming up with that balance and that math behind everything has been the biggest struggle for us just because it's a lot of implement, test with those cards specifically, and then when we put new things in does those new things break our old map, do we have to rebalance the old things because we put something really powerful in? So it's just all that balancing and all that math crunching in the background.
TechRaptor: So it makes it easier for the players.
Luigi: Exactly. We plan to show the math for a lot of people who are more hardcore players and want to know what the cards are actually doing, so we're gonna have an option to show that so then they can have better understanding of what the cards do.
TechRaptor: When's the game coming out?
Luigi: We're looking to go into early access for PC in early 2019. Once we do that we hope to go to the Switch and then to mobile and tablet.
TechRaptor would once again like to thank Luigi Guarnuccio of That Indie Studio for taking the time to talk to us during their recent appearance at Play NYC.