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This update is just to share with you some of the experiences we’ve had while doing research for My Time at Sandrock. We took a trip to the Gobi Desert, where we spent long days packing in as much as possible: climbing mountains, riding camels, meeting plenty of interesting characters, and now we’re ready to tell you about some of our adventures!
One of the things we love to do in our games is trying to get little details correct in order to maximize immersion; when it comes to world-building, there’s only so much you can get even from the most scouring of search engine usage, so we wanted to actually go to the desert and experience it for ourselves.
Each of our team members had something to learn from on the trip: our artists, of course, had no shortage of scenery to analyze, as well as close up looks with man-made structures and brushes with nature that we believe will help inspire and improve the overall aesthetic of our game.
Our designers were able to see the tamers of the desert in action and take note of tasks needed to survive in this harsh climate: we learned about desert planting, travel, and all the specific constructions the people there use to keep things hospitable, among other things.
Our storywriters were able to speak with locals young and old to learn about their daily life and history. They told us proud tales of their heritage, but also harrowing tales of famine and economic ruin caused by rampant sandstorms and drought.
We did manage to have a bit of fun while we were out there, though: we tried some local dishes, went sand-sledding… we even went to a literal bandit dungeon from a thousand years ago that had more twists and traps than we’ve seen in most imagined game dungeons! Luckily, we managed to avoid the spike pits, blades in the wall, falling boulders, etc. …
The experiences we had and stories we could tell are far too many to document in a single article; suffice to say, we’ve learned a ton of things that we’re extremely excited to start working into our development process, and we’re confident that our time in the Gobi Desert will make your time in Sandrock just that much more enjoyable.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more updates!
–By the Sandrock Crew