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Home > Jane Jensen on the Inspiration behind Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers Remake

Jane Jensen on the Inspiration behind Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers Remake

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition Logo

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers is getting a graphical overhaul with the 20th Anniversary Edition amongst other changes. The game is shaping up nicely. Well, we recently had a chance to conduct an interview with Jane Jensen - the games creator. Jensen is not only heading the development of the remake, she is also the creator of the original. We talked about several things that influenced the remake and some about the future of the series. Check out the full interview after the break...

Hey Jane,

First - I want to thank you for taking the time to do this interview with us. We only have a few questions for you so let us begin. What was the inspiration behind remaking Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers instead creating a whole new entry in the franchise?

Jane: It's been so long since the last game was out, and the series is pretty dated by modern standard. So the idea was to remake the "pilot" episode (that is, GK1) and hopefully use that to kick off a new life to the GK franchise.

What was the inspiration behind the main character of the game? Was there a movie character or some other character such as in a book that inspired the personality behind Gabriel?

Jane: Gabriel is very much a rogue or bad boy character. I wanted a character that was sexy even though you know he's everything your mother warned you about! Looks wise, he was probably influenced by Sandman and Hellblazer, graphic novels I loved at the time.

What made you want to include the 20th Anniversary Edition bonus content as unlockable throughout the game instead of being available as a separate disk or download?

Jane: Well, some of it related directly to the image that you are seeing in the game, so it's nice to be able to see them side by side. And we were really focused on a digital game, so we weren't so much thinking about a separate booklet or disc.

The game is based around voodoo murders - what originally got you interested in voodoo and decide to create a game based on it?

Jane: Angel Heart came out in '87, The Believers in '87 and The Serpent and the Rainbow in '88, and those were all movies I loved. So I guess they got me thinking about voodoo. I did quite a bit of research for the game. I also love the old black and white films like I Walked with a Zombie and White Zombie.

One thing I found interesting was the inclusion of the graphic novel in the game. What made you decide to include this as it could potentially spoil the story of the game? Or is there more to the game than what is to be believed by the graphic novel?

Jane: The graphic novel was in the box in the original game, so it was always something that player's could read at any time. We wanted to include it in the remake because it's an important part of the story. We will probably put a spoiler warning on it before we ship, but to me it's not critical that players not read it before playing the game. You're not sure how it relates to the story exactly until later on.

Over the past 20 years there has been lots of progress in the way that games are developed. How are you adapting the new methods to remaking such a classic game? Are there any new challenges that have come up that would be better handled the way it was done 20 years ago in terms of programming languages, sound synthesizing, or anything else?

Jane: Yes, the higher resolution brings challenges because in the original game the characters were basically blocky pixels and you could get away with them just sort of waving their hands around as they talked, but now with the HD you can see every thing, so everything has to be lip syncs and you need to be conscious of expressions. But we also had the advantage of working with the Unity engine and the tools already established with Moebius, so the tools were solid and super helpful in getting the game together quickly.

Our last and final question - given that Pinkerton now has a license for the IP, can we expect to see more remakes or a brand new entry into the franchise in the future?

Jane: Currently Pinkerton Road only has the license for GK1. But we are very excited about the new Sierra brand inside Activision and have already been talking to them about ways we can work together in the future. I really would love to do some brand new GK games with them.

Thank you one last time for talking with us and we look forward to seeing how everything unfolds! We hope this remake is a success and that you continue to create wonderful stories for adventure games.

Jane: Thank you, Austin! I really appreciate the coverage.

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