Chinatown Detective Agency is a game set in the year 2032 where the world is in a state of chaotic flux as the global economy is on the verge of collapse. Set in Singapore as one of the last refugees of relative order, the city-state is teetering on the edge.
In this fictional Singapore, the government is scraping the bottom of the budget barrel with the police force unable to cope with the rise in crime. Private detectives are becoming increasingly popular for both well intentioned and nefarious people who need a little investigating done.
The main character of the game, Amira Darma was once a rising star at Interpol and has just opened a detective agency in the heart of Chinatown. Players control Amira as they travel across the world in pursuit of answers and a handsome pay check.
Mark Fillon, creative director and game designer for Chinatown Detective Agency was inspired by his love for detective noir fiction. He enjoys TV shows like Twin Peaks and movies like The Maltese Falcon and games like L.A. Noire.
The biggest inspiration for this game is classic Carmen Sandiego games of the late 80s and early 90s.
“A large chunk of my childhood was spent playing those games. I had always wanted to play a Carmen Sandiego game that “grew up” – one that catered to an adult audience and was updated for the present day. So I thought, well, the game isn’t going to make itself. Coming off from the modest success of our first game, Terroir, a winemaking tycoon game, I thought this would be the perfect next undertaking for us,” said Mark Fillon who created the game.
Chinatown Detective Agency is created by General Interactive Co. which consists of three people scattered around the world (which is fitting for a game where the player travels the globe).
The game designer and writer, Mark Fillon is based in Singapore, then there is Jenny Hide, the lead programmer based in Plymouth in the UK. Ricardo Juchem is the art director based in Curitiba, Brazil. There is also a team of freelancers like the animation specialist Alex Kool who is located in Minsk, Belarus and a few other people who do audio and other graphical assets.
Locations around Singapore were suited for the settings in the game. Places like the Botanical Gardens, the Civic District and Chinatown itself were selected with a slight futuristic twist.
Osaka and Istanbul were also fun to create, according to Fillon.
Ricardo Juchem, the art director was responsible for creating the look of the game, creating every location and character pixel by pixel most of the time.
The game will be launched sometime in late 2020 around October or November. General Interactive Co. plans to start a Kickstarter campaign in January next year. There are plans for release on Steam, the Humble Store and GOG.
It will be available for PC (Windows, Mac and Linux), but depending on how much the company receive on Kickstarter, they may release for the Nintendo Switch and mobile devices as well.
“I’ve been living in Singapore for the past four years. I released my first game, Terroir, a winemaking tycoon game back in 2017. Chinatown Detective Agency will be my second. The very early beginnings of my game design passion was when I got into ‘modding’ or creating custom missions and mini-games for games like Age of Empires way back in the early 2000s. I’m happiest when I’m making games,” shared Fillon in an email interview.
Follow General Interactive Co. on Twitter (@genintco), or check out their website(www.generalinteractive.co) or find them on Steam by searching for Chinatown Detective Agency.