FW Editor: Hello, can you tell us something about yourself so our readers may get to know you a little?
Anastasia Nekrasova: In May 2009, my sister and I began to brainstorm our first game. Still isn't finished, but it can't wait to get out. :) We love making games. It provides an outlet for creativity and self-expression. I manage the overall process and help out with game design/development. Alisa handles the programming and part of the game design too. There are also other people involved: artists, musicians, etc. Oh… and all our games are voiced by professional actors.
FW Editor: How did you come up with the idea for developing such an interesting game as Magic Sweets?
Anastasia Nekrasova: It's no secret that all casual games are alike. We had fun with games like Potion Bar and IceCream Mania. We wanted to do something along the same lines while still putting a bit of ourselves into the genre. This "us" turned into a small green sidekick; Dino the baby dragon. One thing we also liked about Potion Bar is that the customers' replies were done with live audio. So we continued that tradition. Part of our innovation is to create a Time Management game with more realistic graphics than what's usually seen. And even though some people complained the graphics weren't that great, a lot of positive feedback from players proves we were on the mark.
FW Editor: How long have you worked on this game? Are you constantly updating it or do you find it perfect the way it is right now?
Anastasia Nekrasova: We worked on it for a little over 6 months. After the game was published on the BigFishGames (http://bigfishgames.com) portal, we kept an eye on its feedback. We produced three updates in all, taking player suggestions into consideration.
FW Editor: Can you please tell us more about the talking characters that a player can pick? How about the baby dragon that you can train?
Anastasia Nekrasova: We created 8 characters and did our best to make them as lively as possible without being too much alike. We gave each character unique traits. For example, the Twins are very emotional. Their mood easily swings from cheerful to sad. The Magician, who's also the Academy's dean, is serious and rigourous, though still kind. As far as the Ghost King is concerned, well… he's still the King… enough said. Our players often tell us that they chit-chat with the characters. We're quite proud of that. It confirms that making "lively" characters was a good idea.
One of the game's key elements is the Baby Dragon. He is, we could say, what makes us unique. He doesn't talk, but you can't help finding him irresistible. And you can always blame your failure to win the Gold Cup on his sluggishness. :)
FW Editor: Not many applications are made for Windows and for Mac OS also. Why did you decide to build an application that will work on both of the operating systems?
Anastasia Nekrasova: Alisa has a soft spot for Apple products. :) She's the one who insisted we port the game to that platform, and the one who did it. Now it's turned into a sideline. We port other games to the Mac platform, and do consulting work in this area.
FW Editor: What else can you tell us about your work? Is this the first program you have developed? Do you have any interesting ideas for the future?
Anastasia Nekrasova: Our first game was called Samurai Last Exam. It was far less popular that Magic Sweets. It does have a certain charm, though, and still selling. Recently, it became available on the Mac App Store. Our next game will be Fishman, Inc., which should have been the first. Later, we plan on making a sequel to Magic Sweets. We'll consider all the player requests that we weren't able to include in the first instalment. For example: a more captivating and better developed story line, a "smarter" and faster baby dragon, and other pleasant additions.
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