The creators of the Polish Ultimate Ski Jumping did not expect such publicity

I had the pleasure to talk to Sebastian Kijaczko, the founder and president of Blue Sunset Games. It is the studio located in Gdańsk that creates Ultimate Ski Jumping - a ski jumping game in which many find the spiritual heir to the iconic DSJ. As it turns out, quite wrongly ...

The opportunity to talk about Ultimate Ski Jumping was interesting to me because the production still didn't even have its full official announcement. Sebastian Kijaczko told me many details about the upcoming ski jumping game. I learned an example that comparisons to the iconic Deluxe are nice, but somewhat misguided. Or the fact that in Ultimate Ski Jumping we will not only jump in the snow, and there will be bigger hills than the mammoth in the game! However, in turn:

Szymon Radzewicz, Spider's Web: 18 August 2019, 17:37. You tweet Ultimate Ski Jumping . Then magic happens ...

Sebastian Kijaczko, president of Blue Sunset Games: I will compare it with the example of our other games. We always like to throw a preview into social media before the official announcement. Sometimes someone will pass it on, sometimes he will write a comment. Then comes the silence and waiting for the full announcement. In the case of Ultimate Ski Jumping it was completely different.

We were very surprised because suddenly thousands of clicks appeared on Twitter! A lot of likes. Email inbox - only today I have finished replying to people. Those interested ask if we are by chance on the stock exchange, because the game bodes well. Six different publishers have already contacted us. They ask if we have someone and if they can provide support. Box offers have started to appear. The game is not yet officially and fully announced, but people already know that they want it.

And how is it with "ski jumping"? Is this license licensed? Did you have to get the rights?

Ski jumping itself, as we checked, is nothing reserved. This is the name of the sport. We just add Ultimate on the front. Ultimate Ski Jumping is not a registered brand. We could take some steps in this respect, but we don't want to create problems for other game developers who would like to use a similar name and theme.

References to the iconic Deluxe Ski Jumping are inevitable ...

It is interesting that our game does not have much in common with Deluxe Ski Jumping. Since yesterday the media have written that Ultimate is some kind of Deluxe spiritual heir. In fact, we have nothing to do with Deluxe Ski Jumping except that it is the same sport.

Wait ... it looks similar. What are the fundamental differences?

First of all, we found that it would be nice to make a 2D ski jumping game that can be run on the console. There are currently no such games on consoles. In addition, we grew up on Deluxe Ski Jumping, but also on these three-dimensional RTL Ski Jumping. We really like to compete at work - be it Quake or Brawhall - and we found that we lack sports rivalry a little. The topic of ski jumping came back and we decided to go in that direction.

So consoles and pads. Strange yes, without balancing the mouse with the roller in the air ...

Of course, the PC version will also be mouse-controlled, but we focus primarily on pad control. Tilting analogs will affect flight, punching and so on. Some Deluxe fans probably can't imagine how they can play on the controller. But ski jumping was also on PSX and PS2. Therefore, we will propose a slightly different solution. We approach the mechanics in our own way, but people playing for the first time do not have to be afraid - they will certainly not have a problem with mastering jumps.

Okay. So I stand out with the X button. What next?

You are sitting on the hill. With your inbox you go to the reunion action. You are gaining speed and there is a lunge from the hill. You need to press the X at the right time to get into the good or perfect jump zone. Carries you up in the air. The competitor sets himself in a position suitable for the wind resistance. You need to steer the knob to stay in the right position. Of course, wind strength matters. As you approach the ground, the mechanics of good and bad landing zones appear.

Telemark?

There is also a telemark landing.

The graphics are immediately striking. Retro. 2D. Have you thought about full 3D?

We wanted to tweak the pixelart to make the game better suit our time. We've found that pixelart is a very nice solution, pleasing to the eye and not aging. However, we tried to experiment with realistic 3D graphics. But we didn't feel it. We didn't like what we got.

Place Ultimate Ski Jumping on the line from arcade to simulation.

I think I would put our game somewhere in between. From the beginning, we did not want to go into exaggerated realism, because these are things that did not work in most jumping games. And even more so in a game focused on party competitions. Realism would not work here. There are so many things that need to be taken into account ... We did a deep analysis and came to the conclusion that we would go more towards arcade, but with elements of realism. Therefore, the middle, maybe with a slight indication of the arcade.

So you can count on elements out of this world: flames on skis or boosters?

Yes, no. I won't reveal much at this point, but the game will show more than standard jumps. Maybe not some dragging stars behind the players, but we will definitely go further than just ordinary ski jumping in winter boards.

In the cult Deluxe I had the opportunity to edit the names of the characters. Can I make Malysz with you?

When it comes to licenses, we're in the middle of some processes, so I won't say anything specific about it. At least until we have this topic closed. For sure, however, the option to edit players will appear. Also changing clothes, buying skis and so on. As for the license - so far we have quiet in this topic.

The default platforms are ...

It will definitely be Steam, it will definitely be Nintendo Switch and we hope it will also be Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

Do you know what suits your game? Cross-play.

In the studio, we can already play with each other on Nintendo Switch and PC or PlayStation 4. Also this is not a technological problem, but the necessary permits. It really doesn't just depend on us. We are all for cross-play. We want to have joint rankings, we would like friends to compare their records. And they played together.

And some campaign?

Only we will inform you on this issue, I do not want to reveal everything.

From a developer, turn into a player. What do you love most about Ultimate Ski Jumping?

As a player, I really like discovering the flight phases. Everything to break the hill record. I check the perfect breakout and the perfect landing, how to fight the wind ... it's something I really like in games. Easy entry but difficult mastering. Each hill provides the possibility of testing a different layout, a different breakout.

The second thing is choosing statistics for the jumper. The five main statistics will affect, among others for reflection or ease of landing. Thanks to this, players will be able to adjust the jumper to their gameplay style.

Wait ... then who will win? A player with statistics matched to the hill, but no experience or a person with more experience, but with worse stats?

Statistics do not affect the game so drastically that a weak player wins with a good one. The more experienced jumper will always win. Player skills count the most. Statistics affect the learning of the game and jumping mechanics more than mastering it.

How many people work on Ultimate Ski Jumping? How does this game relate to your other projects?

This is a very important project, but we try not to categorize it. Fortunately, we are not yet on the stock exchange, so there is nobody to sit over us and wait for us to show something. As an independent studio, we try to simply present our visions to players. At Ski Jumping we let our imagination run wild and propose something new.

We currently have four active projects in the studio, and four people are working on Ski Jumping itself. A second team is working on Franco 2. The rest also know what to do. But I don't categorize these projects. There are no better or worse. They are all important.

Ultimate Ski Jumping - when on store shelves and for how much?

We aim for the fourth quarter of 2019. We're thinking about December, because it would be a perfect game for the Christmas break. However, after we threw in information about our game, we met with such a wave of interest that at this point we want to sit down and once again analyze whether everything we want to include in the game is enough. Maybe you'll want to add something more. We need to talk about it in the studio. The number of questions about the game, the number of people who would like to pre-order it already, make us think.

Finally, the key question is: Hot Seat? Hot buttocks? PvP in front of one TV?

Of course! We can change with one pad and play up to 50 people. There will be no obstacles. We want it to be a party game among friends.



The creators of the Polish Ultimate Ski Jumping did not expect such publicity

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