They've always "started with a cool character" and built the gameplay around them, including its "visual style and audio". It's "really missing" in today's games.
"It’s a tough thing to nail down, but I think the key thing across all of our titles is our focus on characters," said indie outfit Twisted Pixel. Currently they're making The Gunstringer for Xbox 360 and Kinect, of which they were "pleasantly surprised" how powerful it is.
"All of our games have started with a cool character that has an interesting ability, and we’ve used that core focus to build out gameplay, level design, visual style and audio that supports the feeling of being guy who can only explode, a small alien with a blob that eats things, or a puppet cowboy. Sadly many studios just grab a known formula.
"Keeping that identity is important, because I think it’s something that’s really missing from the gaming landscape at the moment. I grew up on LucasArts adventure games and Miyamoto creations like Super Mario World."
"It’d be a shame if our next generation of gamers only knew about shooting military dudes in the face, shooting space dudes in the face with future guns, and pressing a button to shoot a fantasy dude in the face with magic bullets."
Much like LitteBigPlanet's Media Molecule, Twisted Pixel don't want to balloon. "We’re a 20-ish person size time, and I think we’re pretty much where we want to be in size."
"The nice thing about being a small company is that there’s no bureaucracy - everyone touches the game, and problems are resolved by yelling across the office instead of scheduling meetings."
"It’s also a great size for us targeting XBLA, since we can make crazier games that would seem way too risky for a $40 million+ budget," explained the indie studio.
"We’d never get a game like Splosion Man funded as a $60 retail title, but as a top tier XBLA title we’re free to make the perfect game about sploding." The Gunstringer releases exclusively on Xbox 360 today, September 13th in the US, 16th in Europe.