AGALLAMH: Terry Cavanagh – forbróir cluichí ríomhaireachta Gaeilge

Recently, I talked to nos.ie, in Irish, about Dicey Dungeons and its Irish translation by Ríomhacadamh! For anyone who’s interested, here’s the interview in English – (thanks to Mícheál Ó Meachair for all of his help with this!)

Bhí an t-ádh liom labhairt leis an bhforbróir ríomhchluicí Terry Cavanagh le déanaí. Bhí Terry ar a bhealach go San Francisco agus sinn ag caint ar líne toisc gur ainmníodh a chluiche nua Dicey Dungeons do ghradam dearaidh Independent Games Festival an domhain.

I was very lucky to have the opportunity to speak to the games developer Terry Cavanagh lately. Terry was on his way to San Francisco while we were talking because his new game Dicey Dungeons was nominated for a design award at the global Independent Games Festival.

Bhíomar ag caint le chéile mar gheall ar an gcluiche céanna toisc gur seoladh leagan Gaeilge de Dicey Dungeon ag tús mhí an Mhárta, ach ní bhí neart rudaí spéisiúla eile le rá ag Terry.

We discussed this very game because an Irish-language version of Dicey Dungeons was released at the beginning of March, and Terry had loads of other interesting things to share with us too.

NOS.IE: Conas atá agat, Terry. Ar dtús báire, ar fhaitíos nach bhfuil aithne ag léitheoir éigin ort, cé chomh fada atá tú forbairt ríomhchluichí agus cén sórt ríomhchluichí a chruthaíonn tú?

How’s it going, Terry. First of all, in case any of the readers don’t know you yet, how long have you been developing games and what sort of games do you make?

    TERRY: Tá spéis agam i bhforbairt cluichí le fada fada ach is 10 mbliana ó shin, nó mar sin, a bheartaíos triail a bhaint as cluichí a fhorbairt go profisiúnta. Jab a dhéanamh den spéis. Bím ag obair ar an-chuid rudaí beaga de ghnáth dáiríre. Is é sin, gur maith liom cluichí íosta a bhfuil coincheap láidir iontu a chruthú. Anois is arís, déanaim rud éigin níos mó as na hiarrachtaí beaga nuair atá cuma na maitheasa orthu.

    Tá an-chuid cluichí foilsithe agam ach is iad an dhá chluiche tráchtála a d’fhoilsíos ná VVVVVV, ar litir ghrá é do na cluichí a d’imríos agus mé ag fás aníos, agus Super Hexagon, cluiche sciobtha íosta agus lán le haicsean atá AN-dheacair!

    I’ve always been interested in making games, but about 10 years ago, I decided to have a go at doing it professionally! I tend to work on lots of different small things – I like minimal, concept driven games. Sometimes, I try making something bigger out of the ones that seem most promising.

    My two commercial games so far are VVVVVV, which is kind of a love letter to the games I grew up playing, and Super Hexagon, a fast paced, hard as hell, minimal action game.

NOS.IE: Ar fheabhas! Agus cén sórt cluiche a d’imir tú agus tú ag fás aníos? Cé acu ab fhearr leat?

Excellent! And what sort of games did you play when you were growing up? What was your favourite?

    TERRY: An-chuid rudaí éagsúla! Bhíodh Commodore 64 again sa mbaile nuair a bhíos óg. D’imreoinn na cluichí téipe a mbíodh greamaithe le clúdach Commodore Format arís agus arís agus arís eile! Dá bharr seo, d’fhéadfá rá gur chaitheas an-chuid de m’óige ag imirt cluichí aisteacha mar seo a cruthaíodh ar bhuiséad beag. Ceann acu a ritheann liom anois agus sinn ag caint ná an cluiche tiomána seo ina raibh ort carranna eile a sheachaint agus cloí le rialacha an bhóthair! Ní cuimhin liom cén t-ainm atá air, ach bhí sé thar barr!

    Lots of different things! We had a Commodore 64 at home when I was very young, and I used to play the games on the monthly Commodore Format covertapes over and over again. That basically meant that most of the games I played growing up were these kind of weird budget platformers. The one that springs to mind right now that I remember really liking was this driving game where you literally just had to dodge other cards and obey the rules of the road – I forget what it was called.

NOS.IE: Is é Dicey Dungeons an cluiche is déanaí uait, agus tá sé ar fáil as Gaeilge. Abair, cén sórt cluiche é Dicey Dungeons?

Dicey Dungeons is your latest game, and it’s available in Irish. Tell us, what kind of game is Dicey Dungeons?

    TERRY: Is cluiche ról-imeartha é Dicey Dungeons, cineál cosúil le Pokémon nó Final Fantasy. Roghnaítear ceann den sé charachtar, arrachtaí troda, agus téann tú sa tóir ar sheoda éagsúla a dheinfeas níos láidre agus níos láidre thú! Tá na haoinne den seisear carachtar ag imirt le mian a gcroí a fháil; áit ar sheó cluichí leis an mbandia Lady Luck.

    Tá an cluiche sciobtha spraíúil agus cé go bhfuil sé éasca ar dtús, tá doimhneacht leis na meicnicí bunúsacha a chuireann an-éagsúlacht leis an imirt. Caithfear gach carachtar a imirt ar bhealach iomlán éagsúil le go n-éireoidh leat, mar shampla. Cruthaíodh an cluiche ar phionsabal sách bunúsach, is é sin tús simplí agus an-chuid féidearthachtaí éagsúla ag fás as an tús sin.

    So, Dicey Dungeons is a roleplaying game, a bit like Pokemon or Final Fantasy! You pick from one of six characters and explore a dungeon, fighting monsters, finding treasure and getting more and more powerful! Each of the six characters is playing to win their hearts desire on a game show hosted by the goddess Lady Luck.

    The game’s fast, fun, and easy to get into, but below the surface there’s a huge amount of variety and depth to the basic mechanics – each character plays the same game in radically different ways. The game’s all about taking a really basic premise, and going in as many different directions as possible.

NOS.IE: Is breá liom sin – Simplíocht agus doimhneacht leis! Ar lean tú cur chuige nua le Dicey Dungeons, nó an bhfuil sé cosúil leis na cluichí eile a d’fhoilsigh tú?

I love that about it – simplicity and depth too! Did you take a new approach when developing Dicey Dungeons, or is it similar to the other games you’ve released?

    TERRY: Tá sé sách éagsúil leis an ndá cluiche tráchtála eile uaim. Bhí spéis agam riamh sna RPGs ach ní dóigh liom gur éirigh le m’iarrachtaí eile roimhe seo dáiríre. D’fhéadfá rá go bhfuil breis agus scór samhail RPG cruthaithe agam le himeacht na mblianta, ach ní rabhas sásta leo. Cé nár sheolas cluiche mar seo cheana, táim ag spraoi leis an smaoineamh agus leis na meicnicí le fada.

    It’s pretty different from my other two commercial games. RPGs like this are something I’ve always been very interested in, but until now, my attempts to make one have never worked out. I must have made dozens and dozens of half-working RPG prototypes over the years. Although I’ve not released any games like this before, I’ve been playing around with these mechanics for a very long time.

NOS.IE: Dochreidte! Tá tú á fhorbairt le fada, ar bhealach. Tuigim gur comhtharlúint atá ann gur sheol tú Dicey Dungeons as Gaeilge thart ar thréimhse Sheacthain na Gaeilge, comhtharlúint iontach dála scéil, ach abair linn canathaobh gur roghnaigh tú Dicey Dungeons a logánú don Ghaeilge?

Unreal! In a sense, you’re developing it a long time, then. I know it was a coincidence that Dicey Dungeons was launched in Irish around the Seachtain na Gaeilge period, a fantastic coincidence by the way, but tell us why you decided to localize Dicey Dungeons into Irish.

    TERRY: Bhí sé i gceist agam rud éigin mar seo a dhéanamh le fada. Níl mo chuidse Gaeilge go maith in aon chur – níor chuireas aon spéis inti ar scoil agus níl mórán agam anois dá bharr. Ach caithfidh mé rá go gcruirim an-spéis in aistriúchán profisiúnta cluichí toisc go gceapaim go ndéanfaidh sé difear don teanga. Dá mbeadh cluichí a thaitin liom ar fáil as Gaeilge agus mé i mo dhéagóir, cuirim i gcás, measaim go gcabhródh sé go mór liom féin an teanga a fhoghlaim agus a úsáid.

    It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. My own Irish is pretty terrible – I didn’t take much of an interest in it in secondary school, and I don’t have much of it now. But I’m really interested in getting my games translated to Irish professionally because I think having this kinda thing available in Irish can make a difference. I know when I was a teenager, if games that I liked were available in Irish, I think I might have taken more of an interest.

NOS.IE: Aontaím go hiomlán leat. Bhí áthas an domhain orm nuair a chuala mé go raibh tú ag obair linn sa Ríomhacadamh ar logánú do chluichí. Labhair Kevin Scannell i gCaisleán Bhaile Átha Cliath cúpla bliain ó shin faoi sprioc a bhí aige bunchruach ríomhaireachta iomlán Gaelach a bheith ar fáil don phobal. Tá sé ag obair air seo le fada dar ndóigh, ach bhunaíomar an Ríomhacadamh tamall gairid ina dhiaidh na cainte seo leis na hiarrachtaí logánaithe ar fad a thabhairt le chéile agus is é logánú cluichí an chéad chéim eile sa phróiseas seo measaim. Measaim go dtagann ár bplean leis an méid atá á rá agatsa ansin.

Agus léitheoirí Nós ag imirt do chluichí amach anseo, cén chomhairle a gcuirfeá orthu lena gcuid cluichí féin a fhorbairt?

I totally agree with you. I was over the moon when I heard that you wanted to work with us at An Ríomhacadamh on this localization. Kevin Scannell spoke in Dublin Castle a few years ago about his goal to provide a complete base-stack for computing in Irish. Of course he has been working on this for a while now, but it wasn’t long after this talk that we established An Ríomhacadamh in order to centralize these localization efforts and I believe localizing games is the next step in this process. That’s basically why I think our plan agrees with what you’re saying.

Anyway, after Nós’s readers playing your games in future, is there any advice you’d give them if they wanted to develop their own games?

    TERRY: Is tús maith tús beag! Ní gá go mbeadh gach cluiche ollmhór agus casta cosúil leis na cluichí a dhéanann na stiúideonna. Is féidir leo bheith beag bídeach, pearsanta, greannmhar, agus éadrom. Cosúil le píosa ceoil nó píosa scríbhneoireachta, nó aon sórt léiriú cruthaitheach.

    Ní gá duit a bheith i do ríomhchláraí ach oiread. Tá an t-uafás uirlisí ann anois le cluiche beag a chruthú san aon tráthnóna amháin agus na bunscileanna cruthaitheacha a fhoghlaim. Molaim féin Twine, Bitsy agus Puzzlescript mar phointí tosnaithe cuardaigh.

    Rud eile a luafainn ná Game Jams, ócáidí dhá nó trí lá ag a ndéantar cluichí beaga gioblacha. Is bealach iontach iad preab a chur le do chuid foghlama, mholfainn go mór iad. Cuardaigh “Ludum Dare”, sin ceann na samplaí is clúití rathúla díbh.

    Start small! Games don’t have to be huge, involved things made by big studios – they can by tiny, and personal, and funny, and slight, just like music or writing or anything other form of creative expression.

    You don’t necessarily need to learn to program, either! There are loads of great tools for making tiny games in an afternoon and learning the basics. I recommend searching for Twine, Bitsy, and Puzzlescript as good starting points.

    Finally, Game Jams, which are short 2-3 day events where people make quick, scrappy games, are a great way to jump in and get started, and I’d recommend them to anyone who’s curious. Search for “Ludum Dare”, which is one of the big ones.

NOS.IE: Ar fheabhas! Bainfidh mé féin triail as sin! Is tusa an saineolaí sa réimse seo, ar mhaith leat aon rud a chur leis an méid atá pléite againn?

Excellent! I’ll try that myself! You’re the expert here, is there anything else you’d like to add to what we’ve discussed so far?

    TERRY: Cinnte, cúpla rud faoi Dicey Dungeons agus an ceangal idir é agus Éirinn. Seans go gcuirfeadh daoine spéis sna Finscéalta agus sna Miotais a cuireadh le Dicey Dungeons. Is í Scáthach duine de na basanna, agus is í Aoife duine eile acu. Nuair a bhíos níos óige d’imríos an-chuid RPGs, an-chuid cinn Sheapánacha, agus caithfidh mé rá gur fhoghlaim mé an-chuid faoin tSeapáin uathu agus an oiread sin tagairtí iontu do mhiotais na Seapáine. Ní insítear scéal mór fada sna cluichí seo ná gar leis, agus a scéalta comhaimseartha féin sna cluichí, ach déantar tagairt do na miotais iontu agus bíonn siad ina dtúsphointí nó ina mbunús do scéalta na gcluichí. Go bunúsach, is cuid de dhomhan na ríomhchluichí na finscéalta agus na miotais, agus is breá liomsa sin!

    Mar Éireannach ag cruthú RPG, bhíos i gcónaí ag iarraidh tagairtí do scéalta m’óige agus m’oidhreachta féin a chur le RPG. Ba bhreá liom é dá gcuirfeadh daoine spéis sna scéalta faoi Scáthach agus Aoife tar éis Dicey Dungeons a imirt, agus go n-aimseofaí scéal Thochmharc Eimhire na Rúraíochta dá bharr sin nó scéalta eile mar é má thuigeann tú mé!

    An rud deireanacha a déarfaidh mé na go mba bhreá liom ceann de na scéalta seo a ath-insint trí ríomhchluiche lá éigin.

    So, a thing that might be of interest to Irish audiences: the game lightly touches on Irish myths and legends in several places – one of the bosses is Scáthach, and another is Aoife. When I was younger, I played a lot of RPGs, many of them Japanese, and I came away with this kind of background understanding of Japanese mythology, because these games were so full of references to those old stories. Those games don’t have a huge, deep retelling of these myths or anything, that’s not what they’re going for – but they name drop, make reference, have it in the background. They’re just kind of part of the universe, and I think that’s great.

    As an Irishman making an RPG, something I always wanted to do when making an RPG of my own to fill it with allusions to the stories of my own childhood. I would love it if people came away from playing this game wondering who Scáthach and Aoife are, and ended up discovering Tochmarc Emire.

    Someday I’d love to do a real retelling of one of these stories as a videogame.

NOS.IE: An-spéisiúil – d’imreoinn an cluiche sin agus imreoidh mé féin Dicey Dungeons! Go raibh míle maith agat as labhairt liom faoi seo, slán tamall!

Very interesting – I’d play that game and I’ll be playing Dicey Dungeons! Thanks a million for speaking to me about all this. Chat to you later!

    TERRY: GRM, slán tamall!

    Thx, cya!

Is féidir Dicey Dungeons a íoslódáil anseo: https://terrycavanagh.itch.io/dicey-dungeonshttps://store.steampowered.com/app/861540/Dicey_Dungeons/. Faoi mar a dheintear le cluichí indy an t-am ar fad, tá lascaine ar fáil dóibh siúd a cheannaíonn leagan den chluiche go luath! Tapaigh an deis go tapa!

Dicey Dungeons can be downloaded here: https://terrycavanagh.itch.io/dicey-dungeons or https://store.steampowered.com/app/861540/Dicey_Dungeons/. As is the way with Indie Games a lot of the time, if you buy an early version of the game you can get it at a discount! Don’t hesitate to take advantage of this opportunity!

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