Currently nestled in downtown Eugene, Oregon, for the last eleven years Buzz Monkey Software has worked on some the biggest names in console games, such as Army of Two and Tomb Raider. And now that game-making expertise fuels Rinth Island, an acclaimed puzzle-platformer for iOS. Jon Milnes of Buzz Monkey Software spoke with us about the inspiration behind Rinth Island and plans for its future.
Chillingo: What was the primary inspiration behind Rinth Island?
Jon Milnes: The NES game Adventures of Lolo was the primary inspiration, but we also looked to other classics like Fire ‘n’ Ice and Nebulus. These great, older puzzlers taught us a lot about making cool and compelling levels, and how objects and obstacles can be used together in creative and surprising ways.
Chillingo: Rinth Island is both a puzzler and a platformer. How did you strike the right balance between the genres?
JM: Gravity adds extra constraints. It provides a sense of tension and allows us to create one-way flows in the puzzle completion sequences without using contrivances. But it also allows us to add extra “cool stuff,” like stacking objects and rolling boulders off cliffs. It basically gives us more tools with which to make really fun and interesting puzzles.
Chillingo: Is player feedback influencing the development of updates?
JM: We have been keeping a close watch on the comments coming in and we hope to address them in the coming update.
Chillingo: What lead to the creation of the little pets that follow Gimble and Libby? They’re cuuuute.
JM: The credit has to go to the artists and their amazing talent for creating cute and hilarious pets. It was initially an idea that was just being thrown around as a “wouldn’t it be funny if…” Turns out our lead programmer and a couple artists liked the idea and were able to make pets become a reality for Rinth Island.
Chillingo: Beyond the new update, what’s next for Rinth Island?
JM: We’re planning on introducing more puzzles and puzzle objects in the future. Nothing is fully set in stone at this point, we’re really just keeping an eye on what the community wants as the game and community grow!