There are more and more Quebec Games, but where are the ones that take place in Quebec and put Quebec culture first? There are a few, but if it was only developer Olivier Leclerc, there would be many more.
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Leclerc, who leads the fledgling Studio Chien d’Or, is campaigning for a “national video game” that highlights the scenery and tells the history and culture of the people of Quebec.
With its first title released last December called WhisperingA developer wants to take on an adventure that takes place at an abandoned trading post in Lower Canada, in the early 19th century.as well as century. The second more ambitious title, whispering valleyalso under construction at Studio Chien d’Or.
“We have such a big video game industry in Quebec and yet the games we make here are Quebec in their production, but not Quebec in their content. This realization motivated me to make games that were purely Quebec, both in their production and in their content.
Olivier Leclerc, however, sees beyond his own company. In his opinion, all players in the Quebec video game community should restore their culture.
Some studios here have risen to the challenge in recent years. This is especially true for Parabole and her game. Konanarrated by Guy Nadon and set in northern Quebec in the 1970s. A few years earlier, it was Artifice Studio who delved into the legends and folklore of Quebec to develop Cold: A Werewolf Storyin collaboration with author Brian Perro.
However, the founder of Studio Chien d’Or thinks Quebec would benefit from having more examples. The latter believes that from here it would be possible to give life to the Quebec subgenre of video games in the spirit of literature, music and cinema.
“In Quebec, we are in dire need of national self-affirmation, and for decades we have been focusing on literature and cinema, and for good reason. Quebec books and films make us shine internationally. But we never understood how video games could be another string on our bow. Moreover, the production of video games has become democratic,” says Olivier Leclerc.
In this sense, the developer believes that new creation tools, as well as the emergence of several independent studios in Quebec in recent years, contribute to “an ultra-favorable context for the emergence of a national video game.”
“We see it starting to take shape, but it really needs to be nurtured to become a real movement. And, in my opinion, in Quebec, we have reasons, in terms of assertion, to do this, but, above all, we have the means. We have schools, we have professionals, we have mentors and, above all, we have government resources,” he says.
In doing so, he hopes that all Quebec studios, small and large, will dare to give life to this “national video game” movement, which is starting in parallel in other territories, he notes.
Quebec heritage in sauce point and click
The Chien d’Or studio, made up of two employees, aims to lead by example with their next game, whispering valley. Bigger, fuller and more perfect than Whisperingwhich was intended as a prelude, the title is due out in 2022.
Like its predecessor, whispering valley will be based on the formula point and click simple and easy to use. Olivier Leclerc believes this is a proven way to reach a wider audience with his title.
” point and clickit’s overly accessible and, as a creator of domestic video games, I’m not just going to address the players as a closed group, I want to appeal to anyone who wants to be interested in this, ”he argues.
Combining horror and fantasy themes with a good dose of Quebec folklore, the game takes players to the fictional village of Sainte-Monique-de-Monts in 1896. and a mysterious creature that lurks nearby.
“I’m passionate about horror literature, but I also love Quebec history and anything related to Quebec heritage. The two came together quite naturally. When I think about universes, I often lean towards horror. It’s also that horror allows for a certain amount of creative freedom, allowing you to talk about topics without having to deal with them directly. Monsters are rarely just monsters. It represents individual fears as well as collective fears,” Leclerc describes.
To release whispering valley later this year you can try Whispering, the first project of Studio Chien d’Or. The story, which takes several hours, is available on PC and Mac via Steam.
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