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Interview: Tilted Mill talks about Mosby's Confederacy

Tilted Mill surprised many in the game industry with their plans to release a series of downloadable original games on their own without any publisher support. Their plans have already started with the release of their fantasy RPG-village building game Hinterland.

But Tilted Mill isn't done yet for their plans for new downloadable games. This week they announced plans for Mosby's Confederacy, a historical strategy title set during the US Civil War. In their first interview about the game Tilted Mill president Chris Beatrice, senior designer Jeff Fiske and lead designer Matt Zimmitti talk about Mosby's Confederacy and its different take on the historical strategy genre.

First off we have to ask about Hinterland. How has the game done for you in terms of sales? Are they what you expected?

Chris Beatrice: To be honest we didn't know what to expect! But we're really happy with the sales so far. Our goal was to create a fun, innovative game, and make it available directly to players for a reasonable price. Now we're focused on providing ongoing support and updates for the title, in addition to our new projects.

When can we expect a Hinterland demo and are there plans to expand the game with new content?

Chris Beatrice: Funny you should ask, yes, we actually just announced that the first (free) content update for Hinterland is in the works, and should be out in a couple of days. We'll be providing more info about that really soon. As far as a demo, I'm still not sure. We'd love to do one, but our efforts are focused right now on the free update.

Let's talk about Mosby's Confederacy. How did the idea for this game come about?

Jeff Fiske: Like any of our game ideas it's hard to really nail it down to a single moment. There is a style of game we have been itching to do for a long time - one with an accessible strategy layer as well as interesting real time squad level type combat. Separately, with the 150th anniversary coming up in 2011 and the fact that Civil War games seem to garner their own following, we were talking a lot about this setting. I remembered Colonel Mosby as being someone who really should have a game made about him, so we tossed around some ideas and everything sort of fell into place.

What sort of historical research, if any, did the team do for the game?

Matt Zimmitti:Thankfully, there is a pretty sizeable collection of books and maps covering the Civil War always at the ready in Jeff's office. Given the focus of the game though, I really wanted to get a good sense of Mosby himself. Mosby did write memoirs, and in reading them I began to glean a clear idea of who he was from his own perspective. His writing style, his description of events, even just the tone in certain passages really brings the man out.

From another perspective, Herman Melville's poem "The Scout Toward Aldie" was a big inspiration as well. While not a historically accurate account, it is a first hand look into what Union troops thought, or more accurately feared, when the name Mosby was spoken. He had transformed into an almost elemental force in the eyes of Union soldiers... he could strike from anywhere, any time.


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