Interview: Golgoth Studios Talks Joe & Mac Remake


HD remake concept art

French game developer Golgoth studios founder Anthony De Sa Ferreira recently made an announcement that after releasing a HD remake of Toki, the studio would focus on reviving Data East’s arcade and console title Joe & Mac. Due to the early nature of the design, no screens exist of the remake beyond the above concept art. MultiPlayerGames worked through a small language barrier to ask a few questions to Anthony about the upcoming Joe & Mac HD via e-mail.

golgothWho are you, and what is your background? Was Golgoth founded on the concept of updating classic titles?

My name’s Anthony De Sa Ferreira . I’m 30-years old, and I’m the Director of Golgoth Studio. I’m also the producer on the Toki and Joe & Mac remakes. Before I founded Golgoth Studio, I was a Commercial Director for a company who crashed during the financial crisis. After losing my job and being the hardcore gamer I am, some months later I decided to open an Independent video game studio in regards to an old meeting with Philippe Dessoly and the opportunity of the digital platform.

Golgoth Studio was founded with the target of reviving old 2D classic games on a digital platform in high definition, starting with Toki.

Joe & Mac was released on a number of platforms. Will there be a specific version you focus on when adapting it?

We heard players requesting the SNES version for reference. So, when we’ll start to work seriously on Joe & Mac, we’ll ask our Golgoth community on our devblog (and our Facebook fan page) which version they prefer. We really pay attention to people who support us, as it’s important to stay close to them. It’s our policy.

joemac1 Each version had a number of changes associated with it in terms of level design. Would you consider incorporating some of those changes to create a “mix” of sorts in the remake?

On Joe & Mac, we will work on level design the same way as our Toki remake. I mean, we will use the maps of the original version for reference and make the design from scratch. As you said, it will be a mix. If you know the game well, you will know it is level one.

Joe & Mac was somewhat slow in terms of its play speed. Is there a temptation to speed it up for modern gamers?

Yes, absolutely. We did the same to Toki. We understand players want to play with a character who moves fast and well.

The characters contained a number of animated, funny expressions in the arcade game, which the concept art showed (or at least two different expressions). Will that carry over if a specific console version is the base for the update, as those ports lost much of the character in the translation?

All animation of the characters, especially funny expressions, will be available in our version for sure!

Will any new power-ups be added?

In our version, I don’t think that you will get new power ups, but the new design in HD will be like something new, but you will get surprise in the multiplayer mode.

How will you handle the music? The original carried a very light, almost primitive style that suited the game perfectly. Is that easy to update?

Old game themes are difficult to remix because often the 8-16 bit sound have something nice (ed note: translation wasn’t clear, will try to clarify). But we’ll keep to the original music style as closely as possible.

joemacarcIf Joe & Mac is a success, would you consider updating the sequel as well?

Joe and Mac will probably be back, we guess, in another game. We have a game concept ready for this idea.

Are there any suggestions or communication with the original designers when remaking these games?

As during Toki development, we have no suggestions or recommendations by the original designers. We show our work to the licensor some times, but to be honest, except telling us it’s great, we have no special comment! It’s great though, because we have no limitation except our skills!

If you had your own personal choice to re-do any game for the modern era, what would you choose?

It’s a very good question, I think I will answer Zelda: A Link to the Past on SNES. It would be something huge. But, it’s only dream that will never happen!

Free parking. Anything else you want to add or say, put it here.

Yes, I’d like to thank you for this interview and your interest in our studio’s development. I’d also like to thank all the people who support us and who’ll read this interview.

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