The Origins of From Dust; Hint: it was an RTS

From Dust is a God Simulation game that empowers the player to guide a primitive tribe in an ever changing world. From redirecting lava flow to creating more land, re-routing rivers to remolding the very land to your image, it’s all at the player’s fingertips. You’d be surprise that it was actually intended to be an RTS game. In a interview with Eurogamer Eric Chahi explains,

“As strange as it might seem, originally From Dust wasn’t meant to be a god game, but an RTS game featuring a lot of micromanagement.” “It was the same world, with volcanoes, tsunamis, and so on, and simulation was a key element of the game, but the player didn’t interact directly with the environment. However, we had a level editor that allowed this interaction in real time, which was really enjoyable to use – there was something tactile and fascinating about interacting with a world where everything is dynamic. So we combined the interactive enjoyment of the editor with the original world to create a new entity, the ‘Breath’. From Dust became a god game.”

It’s interesting how games develop and change over time. He goes on to talk about some the inspirations he drew from during the development such Pikmin and Peter Molyneux’s Black and White as well as some of the challenges he faced, like what kind of camera would be the best fit, a free roaming or set points.

Chahi believes From Dust can give the least populated genre new momentum because the gameplay is tense and exciting whereas normally the gameplay moves at a much slower pace. The constant change of the world and the player interactions will have short and medium consequences such as diverting a river to endanger a town or to put out a fire. The domino effect of it all bring out the beauty of simulation-based gameplay.

From Dust will be released on July 27th on XBLA with the PSN and PC versions releasing later in the summer.


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Author: VTV Staff View all posts by