// Jesse Makkonen: The Human Gallery

Clickteam Fusion has been proven to be a tool that anyone can use, but Jesse Makkonen embodies this more then most with his success of his first title Silence of the Sleep! Now he is working on his followup title Human Gallery, Clickteam caught up with Jesse recently to talk about his projects and his use of Fusion!

CT – Can you give us a little bio about yourself?

Jesse – My name is Jesse Makkonen, I’m a 26 year old developer from Finland.  Happily married and a father of two! We also have a small, sometimes white, furry dog.

CT – What type of work do you do in your real life? (If you haven’t yet been able to make a living off your own game creations)

Jesse – Developing games! I’m lucky! 

CT – When did you first start trying to create your own games and how did they turn out?

Jesse – My very first attempt was a horror adventure game called “Silence of the Sleep” which I started developing in March 2013 and released on Steam October 1st 2014. I started with zero experience, and even when SotS has some technical short-comings it’s still very playable and people have really liked the game. Taking everything into consideration I’m very, very happy how it turned out!

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CT – How did you discover Clickteam and what was the first program you used from them?

Jesse – Long story short: I remember when I was a kid, I used to make games with The Games Factory with my brother and his friends. Well, I was quite young so I didn’t do anything, just followed and gave my stupid ideas. Around 15 years later I decided to create a game, I started thinking the means and I remembered TGF, I looked if it still existed and found Multimedia Fusion 2 which I started developing SotS with!

CT – Your current games in production DISTRAINT and The Human Gallery can you give us a quick elevator pitch on what its about?

Jesse – Oh yes, I started working with The Human Gallery soon after I released Silence of the Sleep. I learned so much with SotS, from the user experiences to the technical side of things. I decided The Human Gallery would be my “mothership” so to speak.  It is a horror game that tells story of a painter who ventures into the mind of a psychopath in search of inspiration. I’ve really put lots of effort to the art-style and the audio design and personally I love how it looks and plays. However working with such detail is slow, and at some point I hit some technical difficulties that really took it’s toll. I found my mood going up and down the hill all the time and I decided to take a break. At this point I had worked for around 7 months with the game.

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Okay, so I decided to take a break from the project but not from the development. My wife then suggested me that I should create a horror game of smaller scale for the Halloween. Alright I thought… that’s… 3 months away? Are you nuts? But at the second thought, I loved the idea! What I did next, is that I built a small tech demo. Since I wouldn’t have too much time, I needed to design my game smartly. I created a quick tech-demo, and to my own surprise I really liked the outcome. It looked quite good, played quite well… heck, at this rate it would be possible!

I decided to call this game DISTRAINT.  It’s a 2D psychological horror adventure game for PC (I’m considering porting it to handhelds, like 3DS, Vita and Android). You take the role of an ambitious young man named Price. In order to gain a partnership from a famous company Price seizes a property of an old woman. In that very moment he finds out he sold his humanity rather cheap.So, I started working and after only two weeks of development I was able to list the game on Steam Greenlight. It took around 10 days to get Greenlit!

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Awesome, now I’m working my brains silly trying to make this game happen. So far I’m on schedule and everything looks great! 

CT – Do you have a team of people or do you develop your games all alone?

Jesse – Basically I’m doing everything by myself, from music to art-style and from coding to writing. However since I’m not native speaker I’ll get the texts/dialogues proof-read and for The Human Gallery I have some people for the voice acting. Other than that I’m a one-man-band.

CT – What is your favorite part of game development?

Jesse – Audio work and composing music!

CT – What part do you struggle with?

Jesse – Marketing. Duh!

CT – Favorite tools (computer software) and what do you use for your main development system?

Jesse – Mainly Adobe products: Photoshop, Illustrator, Audition, After Effects. Also Fruity Loops and some VSTi plugins. And of course, Fusion 2.5. I couldn’t do what I do without it. As for hardware I love my new 4k monitor and Wacom Cintiq table! For audio recordings I use Olympus LS-10. 

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CT – Any ideas you can share about some future projects are they all top secret right now?

Jesse – I really have my hands full with DISTRAINT and The Human Gallery. At least for next 1-2 years.

CT – Any tips for a person new to game development?

Jesse – It’s possible! It will require almost insane amounts of time and patience. Please, plan your games well. Know your limits and work on your strengths! Be kind and humble towards the people, take the criticism and learn from it!

Screenshots from the author's games

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Article by Jeff Vance

Date: 08/27/2015

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