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Shot Shot Shoot:
Interview with Erik Svedäng

Today Erik Svedäng talks to Mathias Jansson. Erik Svedäng is a swedish indie game designer currently based in Gothenburg. He has created games as Blueberry Garden, Kometen and Shot Shot Shoot.

After interviews with Pippin Barr, Jakub Dvorsky, Jonatan Söderström aka Cactus, Nils Deneken (Die Gute Fabrik) and Jeroen D. Stout today we present you the sixth interview in a series by art critic Mathias Jansson. Mathias regularly contributes to the blog by interviewing the finest Indie Game developers from all over the world.

Be sure to have a look at Mathias’ past series of interviews he published at gamescenes edited by Matteo Bittanti: »Game Art Worlds: The Early Years« and »Game Art Worlds: Contemporary Practitioners«.

Interview with Erik Svedäng

Mathias: When did you start making your own games?

Erik: I started making board games when I was 4 or 5, after my cousins showed me that it was a possible thing to do. When I got older I learned how to program and made simple games for me and my friends.


Mathias: Where do you find inspiration for your games?

Erik: I am usually very much inspired by music, but also from what I read or experience. I like to go for walks and think, so I think the nature around me influences me a lot. For Blueberry Garden it was the archipelago; for my new big project it is the city of Gothenburg where I currently live.


Mathias: In the game Kometen you collaborated with the Swedish artist Niklas Åkerblad. How important is it for you that the graphics in your games is not only good looking but also have artistic value?

Erik: It's very important! I like to collaborate with different people to bring different things into my work. And also because it's fun to work together of course.


Mathias: Your game Shot Shot Shoot was developed for iPad. How has the last year’s explosion of smartphones and handheld devices affect you as game developer?

Erik: I really like the idea of electronic board games; things that bring people together by using these new interfaces. Classic console and PC gaming is great too but it is so focused on watching the monitor. I like the tension that comes from facing your opponent in real life!


Mathias: Your latest projekt is called Clairvoyance. Can you tell me some about the idea and concept?

Erik: It started off as a normal board game with wooden cubes. I wanted to make height be of great importance, so I let the players stack these cubes on top of each other. To make the game go faster and be more intense I let both players plan their moves simultaneously and then reveal them, which made the rules end up very much like a 3D version of Robo Rally + Chess. When I showed the game to my team mates (who I am working with on another, bigger game) they liked it a lot so we tried to make a quick little computer version of it. Of course it took much longer than planned but hopefully we can release it to the public soon (it's in closed beta at the time).


Mathias: What do you think about the future for indie games?

Erik: I am hopeful for the future. I'm very frugal at the moment so it works out somehow. Hopefully the games I'm working on now will find an audience and let me continue. It seems like most people who make great things in the indie game world actually manage to get by, so that's promising!


Mathias Jansson

Interview series with the finest Indie Game Designers by Mathias Jansson on the Next Level Blog:

Part 1: Interview with Pippin Barr – »The Artist Is Present«

Part 2: Interview with Jakub Dvorsky – Creator of Samorost and Machinarium

Part 3: Interview with Indie Game Designer Cactus

Part 4: Interview with Nils Deneken from Die Gute Fabrik

Part 5: Dinner Date: Interview with Jeroen D. Stout from Stout Games