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Vavra: KC:Deliverance wasn't very popular with publishers

Warhorse Studios
A training camp in Kingdom Come: Deliverance
Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Warhorse's Dan Vavra, the man behind Kingdom Come: Deliverance has taken the stage on Reboot Develop 2018 in Dubrovnik and even though his presentation was titled Post Mortem, there will be no post mortems here - KC:D is alive and kicking.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance may be riding safe in the saddle now but it wasn't always so. In fact, Warhorse's title had a pretty sketchy start and had it not been for Warhorse's persistence, we wouldn't be even talking about it.

The company's initial market research included numerous focus groups and thousands of people but it seems like publishers weren't as interested in Kingdom Come as the players were. Ultimately though, Kickstarter kick-started the entire shebang.

AltCharPicture of Warhorse's Dan Vavra speaking at Reboot 2018 conferenceReboot 2018, Dan Vavra

Speaking about game development, Vavra said, "if you're making a game that has any story, writers are probably the most important people on the team". Interestingly, out of 80 candidates for the job of writer for Kingdom Come: Deliverance, only four were women. 

Yet another pickle were the voice-overs and with very few voice actors in Prague, Warhorse held a huge casting for all English speaking actors in the city. Most actors were locals in fact, many of them quite inexperienced. So, Vavra joked, it was like "inexperienced people directing other inexperienced people".

In the end, he says that Warhorse churned out churned out 15,000 in-game animations, 113 hours of animations, 3500 combat animations and in general an "insane amount of work" in Kingdom Come: Deliverance.

AltCharPicture of Dan Vavra speaking at Reboot 2018 conferenceReboot 2018

Apparently though, the next project Warhorse undertakes will most likely announce the game half a year ahead of launch, because the current model isn't as grand as it appears. Vavra says, "we didn't have a clue how long it will take us, and the more time we delayed, the more we looked like idiots".

He also reflected on the vilification he endured in development, claiming that people followed the videos he views on Youtube. After seeing him watch ancient aliens  and whatnot, people made it look as if he's a conspiracy theorist.

It would be a great game actually, Vavra pointed out and we couldn't help but chuckle. He's right, you know. Ultimately though, even though he came very close to quitting the job altogether, he says he endured and is all the better for it.

Warhorse StudiosTwo knights fighting in Kingdom Come: DeliveranceKingdom Come: Deliverance

Again peculiarly, Vavra pointed out how Kingdom Come: Deliverance got much higher scores from mainstream magazines than independent ones.  Even though on paper, Kingdom Come should be exactly what they claim to want - better stories, immersion, historical accuracy, etc., Vavra thinks that this is not the case in practice.

Vavra also talked about the lock picking mechanism, which was made easier but is still too hard for some people. He stressed that if Warhorse makes it playable for 30 percent of people, they will ruin it for the other 70 percent.

What, like when you downgraded PC graphics and cheated your backers so as to cater to console owners and stuff your pockets? Let's not go there mister Vavra.

AltCharOverlaying slices of the same 3d picture with different picture qualityWarhorse Studios: Kingdom Come: Deliverance

AltCharA side by side comparison of graphics qualities of two imagesWarhorse Studios, Kingdom Come: Deliverance graphics downgrade