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Cuphead: employee well-being a priority for Studio MDHR [ENTREVUE]

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The success of the game in retro colors Cuphead it is undeniable. Much loved by critics, the title created by Studio MDHR has won several awards in the world of game since its launch in 2017, as well as inspiring a Netflix series, The Cuphead show.

The Canadian studio will release highly anticipated downloadable content for its game, titled The ultimate delicious dish. The DLC has been postponed a few times, partly due to the pandemic, but also because the team prioritized the well-being of its employees in unusual circumstances. It’s a decision the studio is proud of.

It weighs in the beginning had the chance to speak with Chad, Maja and Jared Moldenhauer from Studio MDHR to find out more The delicious last dish, available from Thursday.


MDHR study

Weigh at the start: Cuphead has been hugely successful since its launch in 2017. What made players fall in love with the game?

Chad Moldenhauer: This is a great question and I don’t know if I have a definitive answer! We have been – and continue to be – amazed by the incredible support from the gaming community for our little animated adventure. The best I can say is Cuphead it may have reminded people of the games they grew up with, but it was created in a unique way they had never seen before. When we released the port to Nintendo Switch, it took me back to the backyard days with friends. The portability of the system allowed players to share the game beyond their living room.

Every day we continue to be surprised and encouraged by the number of people who love 2D animation as much as we do, and we continue to be honored that Cuphead resonated with such a large audience. It is unreal!

PSS: How have things changed at Studio MDHR since the successful launch of Cuphead?

Maja Moldenhauer: In many ways, things haven’t changed since the launch of Cuphead. We are still a team that cares deeply about creating the kinds of games we would like to play ourselves and we strive to surprise and delight people. Perhaps the biggest change is that we are now in the very fortunate position of being able to truly take our time with every aspect of what we do, and we absolutely do not take it for granted.

PSS: We have to ask: the DLC The ultimate delicious dish was announced in 2018 and its launch has been postponed a few times. What prompted you to change its throw and what makes you ready to throw it now?

Maja Moldenhauer: This is a fair question! We have been very open The ultimate delicious dish and, in retrospect, probably announcing its existence too soon. After the release of Cupheadwe had so many ideas floating around in our heads for leaders, models and secrets that we couldn’t include due to time constraints with the release of the first game. We got carried away – this is definitely one of the dangers of creating games we love so much.

After this point, however, we have really taken a stimulating approach to development. From art to pattern design to music, we didn’t want to The ultimate delicious dish or simply “even more Cupheadbut rather “the Cuphead most beautiful to date. This forced us to be very introspective when creating the game, always wondering if what we were doing was really a step up from the original game content. When it wasn’t, you had to be prepared to make the difficult decision to return to square one.

Of course, another big factor you’ve probably heard from other developers is the effects of the pandemic. As a company full of people who have children of all ages, we were blown away during our years of game development and had to adjust our expectations of what we could achieve in a “normal work day”. However, I am so proud of how our team came together and prioritized everyone’s health and well-being throughout the project. These things are much more important than setting an arbitrary release date for a game.

PSS: What players can expect from the DLC The ultimate delicious dish ?

Chad Moldenhauer: When designing The ultimate delicious dishwe wanted to capture the same evolution in terms of style and quality that is seen at Disney, with their transition from films of the late 1930s to films like Fantasy. We wanted it to be the experience Cuphead the finest ever, where each boss is as exciting as some of the final bosses from the original game. More than anything else, let’s see The ultimate delicious dish like a love letter to our extraordinary community Cuphead. When players try the game on the Nintendo Switch, they can expect the same things they loved about the original game, but with our highest level of detail and craftsmanship!

PSS: What can you tell us about the new playable character, Ms. Chalice?

Jared Moldenhauer: Ms. Chalice has a completely new style of play, defined by a unique move set. Some of the big differences players will quickly notice include her ability to double jump, a “rolling” move that includes a moment of invincibility, and the fact that she can automatically parry pink objects by throwing herself at them. . She also has the “Super Art” move, but we don’t want you spoiler!

Overall, Ms. Chalice is thought to offer a lot of creative variety in how players will be able to take on bosses and move through levels. platform. For those who may not have clicked with Cuphead or Mugman, we suggest you give it a try [Ms. Chalice] – but we think even seasoned players, who want to test their high scores or try to beat them, will enjoy embodying it.

PSS: How long does it take for an experienced player Cuphead will he have to devote himself to the DLC?

Jared Moldenhauer: This is something we think will vary greatly from player to player, but we would say The ultimate delicious dish alone it represents between 3 and 4 hours again game. However, we’re not exaggerating when we say that Ms. Chalice and her new moves make the original game very different, so we think players will love revisiting classic bosses with her.

PSS: Do you have to finish the base game to play the DLC?

Maja Moldenhauer: No! After completing the first level “Mausoleum” on Island 1, where you will meet “The Legendary Chalice”, you will also meet a new character who will activate a completely new adventure. Players are invited to discover Ms. Chalice, even by completing the base game!

PSS: What are the prospects for Studio MDHR?

Chad Moldenhauer: In addition to the games, cartoons and films that we grew up with, we try to draw inspiration from the artists and craftsmen we admire. From watercolor painters to legendary animations, we always study and re-study the techniques that capture our attention, to see what we can learn.

Our work on Cupheadand now The ultimate delicious dish, has taught us that we feel very attached to working with traditional materials and to arouse a feeling of nostalgic joy in our players. More than creating things that evoke a certain style or a certain era, we like to test ourselves to see if we can create things that seem taken from another era, with all the challenges of authentic technique.

If there is a “special sauce” to what we do here at Studio MDHR, maybe it is just that: the fact that we are stubborn enough to impose these limitations on ourselves and see what happens! I think it is fair to say that our next projects will be created with this same mentality, but with hopefully new and unexpected results.

The ultimate delicious dish is available on all platforms you can play on Cuphead.

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