We Talk About ‘Heroes of a Broken Land’ With Andrew Ellem

It’s not easy making video games, especially when you’re a team of one. It also doesn’t help if your ambitions are as far-reaching as those in Heroes of a Broken land. You see, Andrew Ellem — creator of Winged Pixel, developer of Heroes of a Broken Land, designer of graphics, and lover of the finer things in life — wasn’t satisfied with sticking to a single genre. “Nope, that’s for the weak,” he probably said as he typed up another line of code, taking a sip from his flask. Instead, Andrew opted to meld his various ideas into a single experience, and allow players the freedom of a classic turn-based RPG, dungeon crawler and town management simulator without compromising an ounce of quality.

If you couldn’t tell, I love Heroes of a Broken Land. I spent a majority of my week in its dungeons, searching for treasure while my fiance screamed behind my wall of headphones. That’s why I was excited to chat with Andrew Ellem, and get some insight into his process, as well as the future of the game. I made sure not to bother him for too long, though. I assumed he was busy with dungeoneering.

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[Hardcore Gamer] As a one man team, did you ever feel overwhelmed by the sheer ambition of heroes of A Broken Land?

[Andrew Ellem, Winged Pixel] From time to time yes, the sheer scope of the game could feel a bit overwhelming. At times it would feel like I’d never finish, but often that feeling passes and if you just keep taking one step after another eventually you can see that your goal is just around the corner.

The game seems to have it all. What was the most challenging aspect of creating such a diverse and expansive experience?

Balance was always my concern, with so many classes and game systems plus randomly generated worlds it was always a challenge to create just the right amount of difficulty. Basically just making sure the dungeon crawling, world and towns interacted in interesting ways and didn’t feel like 2-3 different games duct-taped together.

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Did you set out to redefine the turn-based RPG by injecting so many different genres into the core-concept?

Not at all! The design for Heroes of a Broken Land simply came from the idea of wanting to combine some of my favorite games of the past. I was disappointed that turn-based dungeon crawlers weren’t being released anymore, because I wanted to play one! It was really just about trying to create a game that I’d want to play.

What are your plans for Heroes of a Broken Land, and where do you see it heading in the near future in terms of updates and expansions?

There will be a patch out soon fixing some issues people have encountered, and I’ll continue to support the game as long as needed by fixing bugs. There will probably also be some patches to fix some UI issues that people have been complaining about.

As for larger updates, I certainly have lots of ideas of what I’d like to add to the game. It’s very likely that some larger updates will be made, bringing some new content to the game. But I don’t yet have anything specific to announce just yet

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Heroes of a Broken Land is available on the Winged Pixel website, and is recommended for anyone that in search of a definitive turn-based RPG. If you’re feeling generous, help Winged Pixel get the game on Steam by voting.