How do you top such a stellar first project?
The Artful Escape received a massive amount of praise when it launched. That love certainly came from players, but it poured in from press as well. This led to The Artful Escape being nominated at the Golden Joystick Awards 2021 for the “Best Visual Design”, “Best Audio”, and “Xbox Game of the Year” categories. After that, the game received three nominations at The Game Awards 2021 for “Best Art Direction”, “Best Score and Music”, and “Best Debut Indie Game.” That would be an impressive feat for any game, but it’s made that much more unbelievable when you learn that this was the very first game for developer Johnny Galvatron.
Johnny Galvatron had never released a game in his life. He spent most of his time being a part of the Transformers-inspired rock band, the Galvatrons. All it took was a creative idea for Johnny to pivot from playing music to making games, even if both share very similar DNA.
Not surprisingly, making your very first game is an incredibly difficult thing. In an interview with Games Industry, Johnny opened up quite a bit about the process.
**“I’d never made a game. This is my first and only game.It was extremely difficult – the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. I got two grey nose hairs from it.
…Being given that responsibility of taking that money and making something, and then having employees and not letting them down, that was a lot of pressure. While trying to come through with this idea, because there’s a lot of games you can point to and say that’s like The Artful Escape.
At the same time, the team that we got together was just so dedicated, and gave so much of themselves to make this game what it is, it was an incredible experience. When you’re in the office and people are arguing about an idea, you could let that get you down. But I always just thought to myself, having been involved in creative projects my whole life, these people really care about what the game is going to be, and that’s a fantastic feeling and a privilege.”**
Johnny had a lot more to share about the process of making The Artful Escape, and you can read all about it in the full interview.