"Future-looking" Telltale says the key word is "modern" going forward 03 Apr, 2013 / 0 comments

There's a new interview with Telltale CEO Dan Connors courtesy of Digital Trends, and you are encouraged to read it. Naturally, the tone is pretty upbeat considering the studio's soaring eagle status as of late, but this bit is liable to provoke one or two of you:

Now does that give you pause? When you look at Monkey Island, which is a very interesting case where you’re working with a familiar IP in the realm of gaming. It’s not a comic book or a TV series, it’s a classic game. The news came out a few years ago that you had the license for King’s Quest. Do you re-think how you approach that or whether or not you do something like that when it sort of represents… a step away from the Telltale voice?

I think there’s an expectation that comes with the classic stuff that puts us in kind of a no-win position where we’re going to disappoint on some level if we don’t stay true to the roots there. Right now we’re in a place where we’re really pushing in a new direction. I think there’s a possibility to be back in that space and modernize some of the older franchises still, but right now our focus is certainly The Walking Dead and Fables: The Wolf Among Us. They’re taking up a lot of our mental bandwidth. What we do next is still something we’re working on, but I think we’re going to have some very cool, future-looking announcements. I think ‘modern’ is kind of the key word. Bringing stuff forward from the past, that’s not a huge focus for us right now.

It certainly seems like Telltale wants the expectation that they're here to revive old adventure IP to be disposed of. Arguably, with the all-but-officially-announced cancellation of their King's Quest take, Tales of Monkey Island was their only true example of that (Sam & Max was the rejuvenation of a franchise as a whole, not specifically a PC graphic adventure) so Dan's comments don't signal the abandonment of roots some will surely insist they do.

In fact The Walking Dead was very much the culmination of an evolution you can cleary see from Out from Boneville on. Sure, it perfected a balance such that it resonated with players more so than any previous release, but anyone intimately familiar with the company's whole catalog would identify it as the latest phase of what has been a fairly natural evolution. Considering that evolution has almost always been in the direction of improvement, it's hard for me not to get stoked about the company's next projects regardless of my familiarity with the property.

I will say this though, the company's grand success is making the fact that Puzzle Agent remains their only entry in the non-licensing experiment more and more difficult to justify.

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