Howdy villagers!

Hey, it’s Matt, founder and creative director at Ishtar Games! Last week felt like autumn, but well summer is – at last – here in north of France. Before going full on lazy at the beach for my summer vacations, we thought it was a good time to talk a bit about what we are working on these days.

Of course, a large part of the team is still working hard on The Last Spell, our tactical/roguelite RPG which we launched in Early Access 1.5 month ago. If you still haven’t checked it out, you can here. We have clearly defined the content of our next – big – update, and so now it’s « just » a matter of doing all the things we planned… I can’t say much, but as we are accustomed working on this update made us go a lot farther than we initially thought… so you can expect some MASSIVE surprises ^^

Sorry, I’m not here to talk about The Last Spell, but about the new project we announced a few weeks ago: Lakeburg Legacies!

As you can see from the Steam Page, it’s… quite different from The Last Spell! Our goal was to create something a bit more light-hearted in the thematic and in the aesthetics than before. That being said, you’ll recognize our usual way to do things, the underlying simulation systems will be quite solid and we always aim for the best production value that we can achieve.

It’s already been a bit more than 6 months since the (small) team started working on Lakeburg Legacies, there is still A LOT to be done but we’re quite happy with the pace of development. Core features are almost all implemented in at least a basic version, so we will be starting to inject some « fun factor » into it ^^

Hi, Justine!

Also, a quick word about the team! Manon is the art director on this project, she is responsible for the absolutely gorgeous look of the game, be it the character design or the UI. As a concept with a ton of UIs, she is doing a wonderful job of bringing a bit of life and joy to these bars and buttons.

I (Matt) co-created the concept with her and Bruno (marketing director), and after that I melded all the pieces of concept into a coherent game design, describing all the systems our game will have, and giving all this base material to Simon, our lead (and only!) programmer on the game. He is a bit too efficient, so we will have to bring some new faces to the team soon so that everything goes smoothly… 🙂

Speaking of new faces, Justine already worked on the game during her internship last year, and we liked her work so much that she joined the team again after her graduation! So say hi to Justine!

I also wanted to talk a bit about our intentions with this project. Lakeburg Legacies is a small management game of a medieval village: it’s a bit like a « god game », so you don’t play ONE character but ALL of them. The goal is for players to really care about the inhabitants of their city, whom are all generated by the game with their own names, traits and different tastes. Hopefully you’ll recognize them over the course of your game, you’ll love some of them, hate others, some will probably make you laugh… That’s also the beauty of heavily procedurally generated games! If done well, every run is filled with surprises and funny things to discover, which creates unique stories to your own experience with the game.

Another goal of the game was to be some kind of « drama » generator. The first idea was to place the player in the role of a matchmaker. In real life, people tend to loooove to meddle in the love life of others… Most of the times it’s a really bad idea, with really bad outcomes, but in the game you are free to quench your devious thirst for breaking couples apart and make everyone miserable about their love life… x)

There is no escape, we will keep using this meme forever.

But yeah, joke aside, we think that the pleasure of matching people together and « see how it goes » is a very strong game concept, it’s something universal, timeless… We built upon this core idea and added some design to it to make it interesting enough for a whole game: first, we added a system of – at first unknown – « likes/doesn’t like » to each character, so there is a little gameplay to the romance, and second we added a whole layer of gameplay about families, inheritance and genetics.

Each baby in the game will inherit Traits and characteristics from their parents, following some basic genetic rules (you can have a dormant « gene » for blue eyes for example, and combined to the active gene from your partner it gets transmitted to some of your children). That’s already fun visually to see the resemblances between parents and children, but the core gameplay here is that this way you can try to optimize Traits inheritance between characters to boost the next generations’ stats, and so have a more effective city!

That’s it for now! As we are used to do this for all our games, we will try to regularly post new content about the behind the scenes of the development of Lakeburg Legacies. It will be our first self-published game so far – that is to say we will be in control of all aspects of the game’s release – so it’s a big and exciting milestone for us as a company!


Talk to you soon,

Matt & the Lakeburg Team



CEO / Creative Director