Dan from PressA2Join recently had the chance to chat with LKA Founder Luca Dalco about The Town Of Light, an upcoming Survival Horror game coming to the PC soon.
Dan: For those who haven’t heard about The Town Of Light can you tell us a little about it?
Luca: The Town Of Light is a first-person psychological adventure with no jumpscare, no monsters, no open doors with keys to find, no psychiatrical institutions meant such as luna park. During the game the task of the player is to rebuild the memories of a young schizophrenic girl, Renèe, who was hospitalized in 1938 and spent most of her life in an asylum. The player explore some of the pavilions looking for clues that will allow us to relive the story of Renèe through documents, flashbacks, hallucinations.
Dan: The Town Of Light is based on real events in a real place, can you explain a little about that?
Luca: The set of the game exists and has been rebuilt with care: the environment of the game is the former asylum in Volterra, one of the largest in Europe with 20+ pavilions, and more than 5000 patients at the same time. There is a long process of research behind the game. More info about the bibliography on http://www.thetownoflight.com/blog/research/
The added value of “The Town of Light ” is the actual setting and the approach of “historically plausible” argument. There will be no monsters to shoot, but a personality to rebuild. The only monsters are those born from our minds. The player can explore thousands of square meters inside the pavilions and dozens of hectares outside, faithfully recreated in 3D to shake the conscience and to immerse the player in an environment that led him to reflect on his own mental sanity.
Dan: There are a lot of Survival Horror games out there, what makes The Town Of Light different from the others?
Luca: What makes The Town of Light so special is that everything seems so real! I think we have never seen in a game an asylum as we’ll let you see this one. It is the creepiest reality that whoever can ever imagine.
Dan: The game is set inside a Psychiatric Hospital, why do you feel this kind of setting makes for a great game?
Luca: As I mentioned before, our choise to set the game in the asylum makes The Town of Light a very particular game. From the first glimpse of the asylum, with the “Charcot” pavilion and the park that surrounds it, the atmosphere appeared to be perfect as the setting for a game.The asylum actually exist, it is abandoned from many years and now dominated by the nature.
Walking around the pavilions makes you feel terrified, you can really feel the dark past of the place. Exploring the asylum through the game the player can feel exactly this atmosphere. With Oculus Rift support the level of immersion increases incredibly! The player can really feel that somebody is looking at him and I can tell you that during the tests we did I saw that almost everybody turns to look back!
Dan: The game is compatible with the Oculus Rift, can you explain how that will make the experience of the game a better one and what players can expect when using it?
Luca: In part I’ve already explained, but I would like also to say that there will be many stages during the game while the player will explore the asylum as it was before, when it was open, active, full of desperation.
When we live these moments through Oculus Rift, including therapies and violent hallucinations … I mean.
Dan: The screenshots and artwork I have seen make the game look very daunting, yet beautiful, can you tell us a little about the work that went into designing the graphics for the game?
Luca: We did a lot of work in order to design and refine the visual appearance through some particular stylistic choices that we’ve made. We tried to make creepy and terrifying a sunny spring day.
No darkness, fog, lightings and thunders, but sun, blue sky, trees, singing birds and butterflies flying.
We made this choice just to make the player pay attention on the protagonist. The madness is like this. The darkness, fears, the monsters are in our mind nevermind the sun is shining. A young girl who is pretty, smart and charming wake up in the place of no return imprisoned by her own thoughts.
The comparison between real life and in- game is incredible
Dan: How important do you think it is to get the right music to fit the kind of game you have made?, it appears as if Alessio Belli has got it spot on.
Luca: Of course, the music is essential. At the beginning of our project Alessio was in charge of the music but now he is very busy with the code. At some point Davide joined the team (Aseptic void) and actually he is in charge of that part of the work. The work we did is huge because in each situation we wanted to have a different music depending on the specific choices of the player.
Dan: At the Game Connection Development Awards you received an award for Storytelling, that must have been a good feeling for everyone behind the game?
Luca: Absolutely, it was a major prize that has strengthened our determination and motivate us even more to create a strong narrative experience, engaging and realistic, that can disturb and excite at the same time.
Dan: Do you have any future plans to bring The Town Of Light to the consoles?
Luca: Now we are totally focused on the PC (Mac and Linux too) version, but we did some researches and seems that there will be an opportunity for us to release the game on console as well.
Dan: Thank you for taking the time to chat with us Luca
As well as having the chance to chat with Luca, Dan also had the chance to play the Alpha demo for The Town Of Light, the below video shows off the gameplay he recorded.