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Topic: Golden Dragon Interview: Berra  (Read 10429 times)
« on: February 15, 2008, 11:41:29 PM »
BenWH Offline
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Today we have an interview with Eric "Berra" Karlsson, whose module Surviving Horror 2 won the Golden Dragon Most Replayable Module Award for 2006. We learn a bit more about his 'horrific' tastes, as well as what he's up to now...

What made you start building modules for NWN?

Well, the reason I started to create modules for NWN was because I wanted to create my own games. I've always been interested in games and the stories behind them and a dream of mine has always been just that: to be able to create my own stories that players can play and enjoy.

Earlier I have created maps for Heroes III, Age of Empires (which I have not released to the public) and come up with my own original stories behind them. But with NWN1, I have been able to create the games just as I want them to be since the toolset gives you so much freedom once you learn how to script (which took a really long time to learn by the way). Smiley

I usually don't care to stick with the Dungeons & Dragons settings (that I've not been that familiar with anyway) when I create modules, like most people tend to do. I just use my imagination and try to bring the story I have in my mind to life with the NWN toolset.

Ever considered switching to NWN2?

Yes, I have considered it. Mostly because it is the future of mod-making and that it has such incredible graphics if compared to NWN1. Cheesy But I still think NWN1 works for module making. And if you look at the module releases for NWN1 you can see that new mods still keep on coming.

The reason to why I have not switched to NWN2 yet, is mostly because I find the toolset to be so much different compared to the original for NWN1. It seems to be a whole new learning experience. A learning experience which I haven't managed to get into ... yet. Wink

What was the inspiration behind the Surviving Horror modules?

I've always loved horror. And being able to create a horror game is one of my greatest passions. And I usually get my inspiration from all the horror works I watch/play/read during my spare time.

The main inspiration for the Surviving Horror series came from Capcom's Resident Evil series. A game series where you are mostly a lone survivor that tries to escape the clutches of the ever unrestful undead. I've collected most other inspiration from all the horror films I have watched as well as other horror games I have played through the years. One of the scariest games I have played must be Doom 3 for PC I think. It literally chills your bones and makes you jump off your chair more than once. I can tell you that for a fact. Cheesy

SH2 was inspired by Resident Evil and was also inspired by the gaming series "Silent Hill". A Japanese horror where nightmare becomes reality and walls and floors become drenched in blood & rust and deadly monsters lurks in the darkness. The "run or die" concept that I've used for both modules was something I came up with myself since I wanted to somehow bring fear to the players. Something that occurs when you know that: "If I don't run ... then I'm going to die." I personally think it's a great concept and it makes the player value their lives more than in
other modules or games.

What did you think when you first heard about the Golden Dragon Awards?

I thought the idea sounded fantastic and I thought: "Hey, maybe I'll be able to claim one? Great!" Once I saw the different categories though I thought: "Okay ...maybe I won't be able to win such a prize." Since I first thought you were going to create genre categories like "Best Horror Module" (which I thought I would be able to claim for sure). Wink

Imagine my joy when I actually won one of your categories and for replayability no less! Incredible. Smiley Hehe, I also managed to win over Ossian Studio's "Darkness Over Daggerford" which was also nominated for that category. Being a lone author and winning over a module that has had multiple modders working on it was simply amazing.

I think it's great that you've started giving out these rewards since that is truly what this vault needs! Smiley

You took a long break from NWN. Was that burnout?

Naah, not really. I just felt that I had other more important things to do. For example, I was in the middle of a movie project inspired by Silent Hill (you can check it out on: www.youtube.com/user/Berra870927) that I wanted to finish and a lot of other stuff that I thought needed to be done. Thus I decided to leave my module hobby behind in favour of other things.

...and now it seems you're back. Want to elaborate?

Indeed. Smiley I am currently back into the swing of things and trying to create a new module for NWN1. You can check out my website for more information. This module will probably be more like a fantasy module with occasional creepy atmosphere. But I have not really decided yet since I am still trying to find out what I would like to do since I feel like my earlier idea for a module called "Angelic Life" was a little dry. So I'll probably try and do something else ... something a little more dramatic. Wink

Sometime in the future I would really like to be able to begin building for NWN2 as well but we'll see when that will be. If anyone has any tips regarding the toolset, feel free to let me know. Smiley

Thanks for this interview. It was great fun. I would also like to send my regards to the players who have played my modules and again give them my eternal gratitude and thanks for showing interest in my creativity! Smiley Thank you.

Thanks for agreeing to the interview... and good luck with the switch to NWN2!
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Reply #1
« on: February 16, 2008, 02:08:34 AM »
Alban Offline
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Hey, it's great to hear Eric got an award and still works on modules.

Participating in the Beta of this module was somehow the first community work I did, so I'm kind of proud in fact Smiley I even have my name on the module page. Woot, I say.

Thanks to the interviewed and the interviewer !
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Reply #2
« on: February 16, 2008, 04:22:38 AM »
sirchet Offline
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Yet another great interview, BenWH might want to consider a career in journalism. Smiley

It's kind of funny that Eric "Berra" Karlsson is always so positive and supportive when speaking, but dark and scary when modding.

Great interview!
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Reply #3
« on: February 16, 2008, 05:25:52 AM »
Starlight Offline
AME member
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Posts: 373



Yes. His module is really creepy and he does use the tileset to create many fantastic effect...I especially like the bloody words written onto the floor...that's does make me shriver...

I still keep two screenshots about those bloody words...


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Reply #4
« on: February 16, 2008, 01:23:44 PM »
sirchet Offline
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Yes, Berra is definitely a great asset to the vault. I for one wish he would venture over to the NWN2 side. Wink
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Reply #5
« on: February 19, 2008, 07:49:32 AM »
kookoo Offline
Public Forum Moderator
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Another excellent interview.  Congratulations
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Reply #6
« on: February 21, 2008, 03:18:46 PM »
Estelindis Offline
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Thanks for the interview!   I loved Surviving Horror 2 (well, if being alternately terrified and fascinated is a kind of love), and am delighted that Berra's module received an award.  Smiley
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