Boris Chuprin on A Stroke of Fate

Boris Chuprin on A Stroke of Fate


A Stroke of Fate: Operation Valkyrie is a point-and-click adventure game that takes place in Nazi controlled Germany in the 1940s. We got in contact with Boris Chuprin, the lead designer at Akella, and asked him a couple of questions.

HookedGamers: The game saw an Alpha release over a year ago which received rave reviews. Obviously the voice acting was absent in that release. What additions or tweaks have you made to the game since then?

Boris Chuprin: A year ago the game was already close to completion in terms of content. The story was written and most of the locations were modeled. But from the very beginning we've had the goal to release a high quality, perfectly polished product. With no bugs or cracks…

So the last months of our work have been devoted to adding some late content (more locations, puzzles, quests) and polishing the build. We've also spent a lot of time working with the soundtrack and voice overs which are meant to recreate the atmosphere and help players immerse themselves deeply into the ambiance of the epoch.

Boris Chuprin on A Stroke of Fate
HookedGamers: The game was released in Russia over a year ago, a while before the aforementioned Alpha release. Why has it taken this long for an English version of the game to see the light of day?

Boris Chuprin: Mostly because of the huge amount of descriptions we supplied our game with. It's one of the most important features of the game – to immerse players into the world of the Germany of those years. We researched dozens of archives, memoirs, shorthands and books devoted to that period. Then we filtered in the most interesting parts and worked them into the game as descriptions, parts of dialogues, jokes, and even environments and fashion.

I mean that localization process took quite a long time, longer than we'd expected, to be honest. Mainly because we took extra care in our choice of the actors that we invited to work on the project.

HookedGamers: One of Operation Valkyrie's features are the Spy Mini Games. Can you reveal one such game and how it hooks into the overall gameplay?

Boris Chuprin: Let me illustrate it with the first mini game that the player will encounter: he'll have to assemble a camera. Well, he'll get a kit of materials which he'll have to use to assemble a camera with zoom – good enough for shooting the action in the windows of the house in front of him.

By the way, later he'll also have to develop and print photos personally, which is also a mini game.

So… it's very “mini” and very “spy”. :)

HookedGamers: Those who've given the game a try have likened the user interface with that of the Broken Sword games. What games have influenced you in the making of A Stroke of Fate: Operation Valkyrie? Where have your inspirations come from?

Boris Chuprin on A Stroke of Fate
Boris Chuprin: Yes, personally I enjoyed the interface of the pocket PC Broken Sword. It was very intuitive, and I decided that that form would work well for us.

If we are to talk about the games that inspired us… well, first of all is Full throttle. That game is just great! It is clearly number one. The rest are just all the classic adventures we've seen and experienced. From Space Quest and Monkey Island to Fahrenheit and Runaway 2.

HookedGamers: It is our tradition to give developers a chance to say something about the game that they desperately want to get out. Is there anything burning on your lips?

Boris Chuprin: Thanks for this opportunity! Well, we sincerely hope that players will like, and have fun with our game. We've put a lot of effort into it.

Our approach to the graphics and historical style was fanatical to say the least. We've modeled furniture based on authentic photos and even auctions lots which date to that period of time.

Boris Chuprin on A Stroke of Fate
We've added alternative ways to solve some of the quests in the game. A security guard will not ONLY let you through for a cigarette which can ONLY be found in a box located in the farthest room.

We really wanted the player to be able to talk to the Fuhrer's closest clique because so far nobody's done the same in a videogame. Do you want a chat with Himmler? - you got him! To talk to Goebbels? – easy! To check out if it's true that Aksman wasn't one-armed or to speak with Eva Braun - all of these things are possible in our game!

HookedGamers: Thank you for your time!

Boris Chuprin: Thanks for your interest to our game and the cool questions! You are always welcome!