A look back at some classic Rpg Maker games

  • Tau
  • 08/11/2012 07:56 AM

What is Looking Back? A series of articles talking about those classic Rpg Maker games from the past.

Created by: Max McGee/Legion.
Made With: Rpg Maker 2000/3
Gamepages: Iron Gaia, Iron Gaia:Virus

Interview with Max McGee

Who is Max McGee?

Well, that's actually a complicated question : ). I've also been known as Legion (a biblical reference) and as CountZero (a William Gibson reference), I have at least one other alias I'm not prepared to reveal as yet and I've done business as Ghostlight Games and more recently as End Transmission Games, LLC (which is actually legally incorporated as a business, rather than a pretend company). And if you know where to look, my real name is really not at all hard to find.

I'm a 26 year old white guy and I hate it. The part about being 26, I mean. It feels incredibly old compared to how little I've accomplished in life, and how little I've experienced, and how (relatively) few years I've got left on the planet. So while people older than me understandably think it's ridiculous, I do spend a lot of my time feeling old.

I am, ostensibly a professional creative person. I've also professionally sold fiction, but not recently. All in all, it's not much income my creative endeavors bring in thus far, and I wouldn't be able to scrape by at all if not for my girlfriend and creative partner (of 5+ years), who fortunately is wealthy enough to keep me from starving or having to get a real job. She is perhaps the one respect in which I'm genuinely lucky (in more way than one)--if you leave aside taken-for-granted like living in a first world country. I have not managed to secure a full time since college, and my non-creative income in the past four or five years has been from telecommuting independent contractor work, working such odd jobs.

I live in upstate New York in a small apartment with her and our growing fourteen-week old puppy, Dodger (a Dickens reference, and also more importantly a Shadowrun reference) who I should really post pictures of on RMN because he's just the cutest thing.

From age 12 to age 20 I considered myself very seriously as a writer and storyteller, and game design (pen and paper, videogame) was just a fascinating and fun hobby. College was a period of transition for me (and also incidentally the best time of my life) and since the age of 21 I've considered myself primarily as a game designer, with a deep, lasting fascination with roleplaying and its fusion of both complex numerical systems (which are neat to tinker with) and interactive storytelling. I think interactive storytelling is the future of storytelling, period, and I don't just mean videogames, but that's a whole other story. I still occasionally sit down to write fiction--usually associated with various non-electronic games--but not as often or as rigorously as I'd like.

How did you start off in this little rpg maker scene?

Man, that is some ANCIENT HISTORY you're digging up and also a LONG story. Alright, so it was around the year 2000. I was around 14 years old. My dad (or myself) rented this for me from a non-blockbuster, non-chain video rental store (does anyone remember those?) near my house. I could make my own RPGs? I hadn't played too many RPGs at that point, but I was ecstatic. The only (MAJOR) problem was, besides having no one to share my games with, at all, and no way to share them, I had to enter every single letter of dialogue through an in-game menu with a PS1 controller, letter by agonizing letter...ouch! Oh, and the thing used PS1 memory cards for storing the games you made, and storing the maps, system, and scenario data of a completed game could eat up two entire PS1 memory cards easily. Nevermind how many memory cards you needed to start and play with the amount of projects I wanted to start.

It was a ridiculous mountain of technical limitations, but limitations really ARE one way you grow as a developer.

Nonetheless, I made one Complete (although very short) and relatively advanced game in it, a dystopian science fiction patriotic rebel story called Fires of Freedom. I had other games too, but none of them were finished. One of them was a game I developed the beginning of in an aborted partnership with my friend Mike. It was set on a spaceship/space station, it had an alien and a robot party member that could join you, and it was called Iron Gaia.

I believe I was looking online for ways to somehow scan my memory cards into the computer in order to share my game with an audience (it WAS possible) when I discovered RPG Maker 2000, probably sometime in 2001 at the tender age of 15. It would not be an exaggeration to say that my life was changed forever.

It's no exaggeration to say I was blown away by the technology. Weather effects absolutely amazed me! They were like the COOLEST THING. All the new database variables and skill options were awesome. But being able to type my dialogue with a keyboard, and save my game to a computer? That was the BEST! I slowly, painstakingly began teaching myself to "program" in RM2k, and PSX RPG Maker was left behind. My growth into "Max McGee" had begun. I didn't even think about the most important (and dangerous) consequence at first: that I now had a practical way to share the games I made with a wider audience.

My first RM2k project was called "Dragon Quest" and was meant to be a simple, cliche comedy game to teach myself the program. I distinctly remember not knowing about autorun events (because there was functionally no such thing in PSX RPG Maker perhaps, can't remember), and surrounding the Hero Start Position in "on-touch" events in order to do the intro.

What really, really made the biggest impression on me were the (at the time, popular) RPG Maker games I downloaded. I was blown away at how games like Diary of a Madman and A Blurred Line could use the engine to tell dark, immersive stories with cool graphics and awesome music that were also fully realized games. Inspiration took hold, big time.

Other early projects included a sequel/remake of Fires of Freedom (this was before "reboots" were invented, but that's essentially what it was) and an epic fantasy game called Brother's War about two mages, one with the power of FIRE, one with the power of ICE, who grew up together in military academy but somehow wound up AT WAR, get it. I'm pretty sure these early games were terrible by modern standards, but it's the cool parts of them that stand out to me. Like in Brothers War there was a medieval fantasy version of the Normandy Beach invasion, complete with running up the surf past sea-soaked wooden crosses and dead soldiers while arrow fire and magical artillery poured down on you. It probably looks cooler in my mind than it did in game, as is often the case, but it was the most complex thing I'd ever "programmed" at the time. And then the first RM2k version of Iron Gaia, small pieces of which were actually used (albeit in a heavily modified version) in the final release of the first game.

My first RM site that I ever joined...I can't remember the name of. I was probably around 15 years old. It was called Gaming Galaxy or something? It was a small site, I remember being REALLY EXCITED that the owner agreed to let me send him my game on AIM so I could host it. I felt like I had "HIT THE BIG TIME" or something.

The first site I vividly remember being a major part of the community at (and yes, community drama, of) was a place called Dark Dominion, an affiliate of Gaming World. That's where I first promoted Iron Gaia, while working on a few other projects. One of them, called Moment of Truth, eventually morphed through a few more incarnations into The Tower, the classic example of an overly ambitious and therefore never-completed project.

From Dark Dominion I made the leap to Gaming World seeking (and finding) a bigger audience for Iron Gaia and The Tower and from there, well, the rest is kind of history in that part of the intarwebs.

What was the inspiration behind Iron Gaia & Virus?

Yikes, my last answer was REALLY long so I'll try to keep this one a bit shorter. Inspiration wise, Iron Gaia is kind of a rorschach blot. It has a lot of similarities to a lot of popular science fiction, so people tend to see it as being inspired by whatever they're familiar with, whether it's The Terminator or Star Wars. The real answer, however, is a lot more specific and obscure.

The primary initial inspiration for Iron Gaia 1 was not Xenogears, perse, but the opening cutscene of Xenogears, which I saw in a Squaresoft demo pack which shipped with (I think it was) FF7. That opening cutscene, devoid of the context of the rest of the game, was the main inspiration for Iron Gaia. I didn't actually PLAY any of Xenogears until many years later, and I never actually beat it, so I don't know how deep the similarities run. But yeah, watch the intro of Xenogears, the first five minutes or so, and that's the seed for the genesis of Iron Gaia.

Another definite inspiration was the obscure PSX game Overblood. That's definitely where I got the idea for two of the three main protagonists, Carter and the lovable and cheeky Rover, as well as the game's main setup. The part of the novel Lucifer's Hammer I read was a setup for the game's backstory, and looking back, while I wasn't as conscious of it at the time as the Xenogears/Overblood connection, Galerians was a major inspiration, albeit subconsciously, for the whole idea of Celestials.

Coheed & Cambria was not an initial inspiration for Iron Gaia, but was only incorporated into the mythology (and the soundtrack) afterwards. Iron Gaia: Virus is a different story. I was definitely high on the Coheed during the entire creation of that game. Also I was in college and having the time of my life, as well as the interpersonal drama of my life, as college is want to be. I digress. Coheed's interaction with the storyline is funny, if you're a Coheed fan, because there's few to no actual similarities between the C&C storyline and the Iron Gaia storyline. The games are based directly on the songs, not the elaborate story that's supposedly behind them. The major mechanical and gameplay inspiration for Iron Gaia: Virus was the incredible System Shock 2, an amazing game that I heartily recommend to everyone.

Has the Iron Gaia series been a success in your eyes?

That is actually a REALLY tough question. Practically speaking, I'd have to say no. It hasn't made me rich or famous, or even comfortably self-supporting or reasonably well-known (the modest corollaries of "rich" and "famous" respectively). Even at the height of the games' popularity (which has long since passed) I didn't get any of the donations I needed to support myself. Of course, I didn't ask for them. While this is an odd standard to apply to an AMATEUR RPG, and while I know it obviously seems crass and low-minded to boil everything down to money, it's the attitude that's reinforced by growing up out of genuine poverty, which I did. If a creative work doesn't support the creator and therefore practically enable the next creative work for a larger audience, how can it be a success? To put this in other words...by "Craze" standards, Iron Gaia is a failure. It wasn't good enough or popular enough to reach beyond the RPG Maker community, to blow up and attain attention in the mainstream gaming press, the way some very successful (and lucky) games have managed to do. It wasn't big enough to garner a practical, built-in audience for a serious attempt to commercialize.

ON THE OTHER HAND, I have to look beyond the games themselves and on their lasting impact and influence in the rest of my life. It's Iron Gaia's story that Systems Malfunction is definitively based on. And while the income thus garnered is meager, Systems Malfunction has provided the majority of my income for the past three or four years. More importantly, every friend I've made in the past six years or so I've met and stayed in touch with through Systems Malfunction. And that includes the love of my life, a long term six-years-and-counting relationship that I never would have had, in a roundabout way, without Iron Gaia. So on that level, I have to regard it as a big success.

But to answer in a more...typical way, specific to RMN, without asking "deep" questions like "What did Iron Gaia do for me in my real life?". Iron Gaia and Iron Gaia: Virus combined, have just under three quarters of 10,000 lifetime Downloads, between them (7436 as of this writing). As I recall, before GW as a site ceased to exist, IG and IGV had accumulated close to three times that many, between them, for a life time total of between 20,000 and 30,000 downloads. Iron Gaia and Iron Gaia: Virus have each received two extremely flattering reviews on RMN alone, and many more positive reviews before 2008. All in all, I'm fairly happy with and proud of these numbers. I know they're not amazing, while Iron Gaia isn't one of the big fish, isn't a "sensation" like Hero's Realm, I don't think it's done too badly in the Amateur RPG scene. Compared with my other games on RMN, many of which are almost indisputably better than Iron Gaia in nearly every way, it's done VERY well.

Perhaps the biggest and most obvious reason for considering the Iron Gaia series a failure is the fact that it was never finished. Iron Gaia 2 collapsed (I'll get to that later) and the story was never completed. However, I do have a not-quite-so-top-secret project in the works--not Iron Gaia 2, perse, but something far bigger--that, if it's completed, will change all of that, and add much more to the expanded Iron Gaia universe. I know my track record for actually finishing projects is not amazing (in part because I start so damn many), but I think that's still something for fans to be excited about. Even if it is on the back burner for the moment until I finish some other, less ambitious projects.

What do you personally think of the {Iron Gaia} series?

My initial flippant response was going to be something like "it's a highly pressurized can of face melting awesomeness, open with caution" but...

Welp, that's another complicated question. Obviously, I find the embarrassing parts embarrassing. Note that's not just the parts that are genuinely bad, but the parts that are good but...come off as really young...you know what I mean? I'm embarrassed of those too. There's a precise word for what I feel, and that word is Juvenillia. In other words the early parts are something made by someone who believed without a hint of irony that Sephiroth was the coolest dude ever and that Final Fantasy VII was "the greatest story ever told in any medium".

Ultimately, I regard the series warmly and I look forward to replaying it some day, albeit cringing at times. While it was made by a teenager (and in the case of Virus, by a very, very young adult) there's a lot of cool and awesome stuff in there. If you like science fiction (especially the darker and more epic stuff), you're not predisposed against it or me, and you can stand some...questionable...graphic choices, I think there's a very exciting story for you to discover there.

How did Iron Gaia 2 fall apart & is there still hope for it to come out?

Badly & no.

Just kidding, this'll be another long answer. Iron Gaia 2 was a wildly over-ambitious project, and the source of a lot of painful lessons. Like that making a successful game on your own and then getting donations of graphics and resources from talented fans doesn't qualify you to run a successful team. Or that people on the internet are REALLY flaky (duh). Or that trying to make your first serious game in a given engine a "killer app" level success and publicly announcing this is a really bad idea. Ultimately Iron Gaia 2 was a collaboration with super talented artist but ultimately-not-really-that-nice-of-a-guy ryanwh. Ryan was a big Iron Gaia 1 fan and had made a fan remake with better and more interesting graphics and picture-cutscenes before they blew up and become super popular. I reached out to collaborate with him on Iron Gaia 2 and he agreed; several other people were involved in the collaboration, all IG1 fans. Clest for instance made some awesome sprites. Despain made an AMAZING title screen that I think is impressive to this day. Mr. Nemo was going to help with maps, but completely flaked out. He told me he felt really bad about it afterwards and he did help some with To Arms! before that project fell apart/arguably he flaked out again; I honestly don't remember that well. In any case, no hard feelings, Nemo.

Ultimately, Ryan and I both misunderstood the core partnership. I wanted him to make a bunch of awesome original art and make all of the maps super pretty and atmospheric and also make them MAPS and make all the tilesets while I concentrated on the story and the battles. He did not actually want to make EVERY SINGLE MAP IN A HUGE EPIC GAME, I could not make maps that were anywhere near as good looking as the screenshots that had bolstered the game's popularity to stratospheric levels, and I could not even (apparently) make the writing and gameplay as good as his graphics. Our misunderstanding of the division of responsibilities (he thought he had 'taught' me how to map and his awesome-looking first level was designed as an example and I'd do the rest of the maps, I realized I had a LONG way to go and still wanted him to make the maps) completely IMPLODED at the height of external drama, and the project died and fell apart.

I should probably address the external drama. There was after all the public relations crisis side of things. I was allegedly "overhyping" Iron Gaia 2 on GW when it was WAY too early in development to be hyping it at all. This is something I think almost every amateur developer is guilty of at some point. I can't deny that I was overhyping like a motherfucker, but I maintain to this day that Iron Gaia 2 wasn't even in the top three most overhyped projects on GW. So I remain somewhat baffled as to why I was chosen to make an example of, but I was.

Several GW moderators began trolling my huge bloated overhyped topic, which I don't think is very good moderation. Moderation-by-trolling is a bad idea. I responded, angry, defensive, and indignant. Then some GW moderators edited the OP so that the Iron Gaia 2 title screen looked like it had jizz all over it. I responded, completely furious, self-righteous, and highly emotional. More trolling ensued and the topic has locked. I demanded that GW's admins unlock the topic which never would have been locked if obnoxiously smug moderators hadn't decided to troll it for the lulz. It was completely unfair to me that my fifty-gajillion page topic was locked and had to start over. They responded that it was my fault because I was overhyping.

I ragequit GW with a colossally self-important but not at all unjustified monologue. While I'm sure I overreacted, I want to note two things. One, my external internet-based overreaction was completely overshadowed by my internal private overreaction. I actually suffered severe, lengthy depression over this--other things in my life weren't going well either, and it all culminated in a lot of tears, self harm, emo-drama and suicidal ideation. Two, while I'm sure my reaction wasn't saintly I still maintain that the GW moderator team did an unbelievably shitty job of being fair, impartial, mature, patient, or even reasonable.

When I ragequit GW I took a small but significant amount of people to start my own site, Ghostlight Games Our communities were at war with each other for a short time, although it was obvious to both sides that they were the Goliath, we were the David, and this time the Goliath decisively won. Ghostlight hemorrhaged members from just about the beginning and ultimately when I got a girlfriend shortly after starting the first semester of my junior year of college, I couldn't find time for it. My abandonment, which I regret, spelled the beginning of the end for Ghostlight Games, which rapidly disintegrated, its few semi-loyal members returning to the "Bastion of Evil" that was GW and even contributing money to it, something that still stings a bit to this day, but for which I only have myself to blame. I did make several good friends in the GW days, whom I like to think are still good friends to this day, like Otokonoko and Kentona.

While a game called Iron Gaia 2 will never be released, as I mentioned, a spiritual sequel covering the same conceptual space (and more) as Iron Gaia 2 is in development. I am working on it all by myself, at least so far, but I must include a special thanks to blueperiod, of Linus fame. He taught me a thing or two about mappin'.

I really liked Eldritch, is anything going to come out of it in the future?

Thanks! Probably not, but who knows!

Eldritch is not the only game I've developed named Eldritch, actually. I also developed two highly experimental LARP/ARG hybrids called Eldritch; the second one was a much-better-designed reimagining of the first. I ran the first one twice in college--it was intense, and people seemed to really like it--but I haven't found the time or the opportunity to run the second, much better game yet. While their similarities to the Eldritch video game are few--it's not, for instance, a period piece, or set in England--they are ostensibly set in the same universe, and have the same core theme--DARK MAGIC. Perhaps if the Eldritch livegame mutates more in the direction of ARG than of LARP, RMN might make an interesting test audience.

As for Eldritch the videogame, I doubt very much the original rm2k3 game will ever be completed. As a project, it seems enormously too complicated to get back into. I have occasionally fantasized about rebooting the project in a more modern and capable engine, but I have so many other projects that I'm not sure that's realistic. There's no harm in hoping, though! It is still one of my favorite projects.

What RPG Maker Games do you like?

I'm realizing that a lot of the RM games I love are old and ugly.

It's not a very original thought, but I think A Blurred Line is the very best RPG Maker game ever. It's a real shame that it's unfinished, but it was a huge inspiration to me. I also really like The Blue Contestant, also by Lysander86, but I'm not as crazy about Lys's other games (mostly haven't played them) although I hear they're quite good.

Outside of Lys, Sunset Over Imdahl by Teo Mathlein is one of my favorite games. Another one of my favorite games ever is Three The Hard Way by Iishenron. He's been steadily working on a sequel forever; he must be like 40 or something by now, lol. If anyone is looking for a good, substantial RM game that will eat up a lot of their time, TTHW is it, just don't look for graphical brilliance there.

More recently speaking, I also really dig Star Stealing Prince (still need to finish it), Guild Raider, Muse (sadly only a short demo) and this short game by Kan "Reives" Gao called The Mirror Lied that is probably my favorite semi-recent game. Also in the realm of "SPOOKY, SCARY" games I strongly recommend Taut (it's German, but there's a good English translation available) and The Longing Ribbon. And Gibmaker's new game {Set} Discrepancy is really exciting as well.

That's only a partial list, just the ones off the top of my head so to speak.

What are your aspirations for the future?

Most of them don't have much to do with RM. I'm publishing my own tabletop games now so that's a business I'm looking to grow, my LARP seems to be growing dramatically (just when I stopped trying to grow it). Other than that maybe I should get a real job some day, and settle down and get married. I'm certainly OLD enough in actual fact, even if I still feel like a 16 year old kid in my heart.

RM-wise, I dream the impossible dream of not starting any new projects, just finishing my dozens of old ones. Is that a weird thing to aspire to?

Have any words of wisdom for the community?

I'd like to go with the MST3k Mantra:

"Then repeat to yourself 'It's just a show {game}, I should really just relax.'"

In my book, this goes for everyone, but goes twice as strongly for critics and reviewers as for game developers. While developers should try not to take things too personally or seriously, critics and reviewers should really think hard about whether expressing their aesthetic/design preferences and opinions is worth potentially hurting someone's feelings or discouraging their creativity. In my experience, it almost never is, and while I've written many reviews, I definitely regret some of the more scathing ones.

Backstage II, Backstage
(My two favorite horror games for Rpg Maker)

Backstage, how did that come about?

I was a freshman in college, I loved Silent Hill way too much, I was going through a really bad breakup which is sadly ironic because I was the initiator, the breaker-upper so to speak, I was full of venom and angst, I was listening to way too much old, pre-Black Parade, pre-popularity My Chemical Romance and Cursive and early super-miserable Bright Eyes and taking it all WAY too seriously and I saw that my favorite developer on GamingW, Lysander86, had an awesome idea and come out of his seclusion to suggest it to the community.

Before that point (the spring of 2005, 7 years ago, I had just turned 19) I had tried developing the basic premise of Backstage (the intro stage at least) a few times under a few different names, never getting very far. One of the early incarnations of it was an explicit Silent Hill fangame, named Silent Hill: Subtitle or whatever.

Then in Spring 2005 Lys sprung his Release Something idea. A "Release Something" day where you actually release a game. I agreed that was something the community had a real problem with, that people languished over games forever without actually releasing something. I myself had spent years and years on some games without ever finishing them and had eventually moved on and lost interest. I looked at the calendar, saw there was a little under a month between the current date and Release Something and thought...if I cut corners (and a few classes) I can make a complete RM game in one month.

And then I did. It was insane. I worked something like 60 hour work-weeks ON THIS GAME in addition to being a full time student with a full credit-load in my little freshman dorm room suite. Day and night, putting in 8, 10, 12 hour days. But my hard work paid off and I had an almost entirely complete and playable game to dump on the world for the very first ever Release Something. In many ways it's my greatest success, and I'm still immensely proud of it, but I've never done a game in such a short time again and I probably never will.

By the end of the one-month development cycle, I had been working on the game so exhaustively and exclusively, and the game was so unremittingly, mercilessly dark and bleak and sick that my very mind felt poisoned. I felt a strong need to "scrub" or "clean" my brain with Disney cartoons or something to get the sickness out. (I can only remember feeling that way a few times before; one was when I played and beat the video game Manhunt for the first time.)

Backstage II, any news or updates on this?

All I can say is, man, do you have any idea how hard it is to work on a game, even one you love, in a busted-ass old engine like rm2k3 when you've got projects in a shiny, functional engine like RMVX (with Yanfly Engine Melody upgrades) sitting right in front of you? For me at least, it's hard going to the sculpting block with such rusty, dull tools, even if a substantial portion of the sculpture has emerged from the clay.

Backstage II, ironically the sequel to a game that had a one-month development time, has been technically in development for fully seven years now. Holy balls.

Also I'm going to take this moment to be super mature and blame Archeiah_Nessiah for the fact that Backstage II is not out. She promised to make a much-needed CMS for me around a year ago, and I was super excited, and in spite of me taking the time to gather and format compatible images for it, it never really happened.

I'm just kidding, Ness. It's not your fault. I probably never would have finished it by now anyway.

Is there a future in the {Backstage} franchise?

There are no sequels planned beyond Backstage II.

The "Backstage 3" I released, while itself a serious (micro-)game, was a joke in its very premise. At least, that's the official word for right now. I've been known to change my mind...

In any case astute super-fans (there's at least a few out there) will find in-universe connections in the lore of Backstage and Backstage II to my work in several other genres...and other formats.


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WHOA wow wow. two tails? that is a sexy idea...
a lot of people give the guy shit, including myself in rm history, but i have always told people i respected the direction he has attempted to take in his very earlier games, because i remember those actually standing out. problem is, a lot of people base how people act and carry on that bias to their games.

i don't think the plagiarism in his games help his case(this is what i have heard)

honestly, i don't even look at anything he produces through vx/ace??? because there's literally nothing that makes them stand out.

but yeah, i've liked the iron gaia series in concept.

i'm two years younger than you and I feel fucking ancient.

plus i never finish anything

but I consider Iron Gaia to be a definitive rm classic, along with, well, the games you mentioned (plus hero's realm and so on). and I really hope the best in all your future pursuits
I remember those days when Iron Gaia 2 looked to be the next shiny new thing on the rm scene. It was disappointing to hear what happened to it.

I was personally intrigued by projects like the Starseed games (especially Blood Machine), concluding episodes of To Arms, and the seemingly original Journeyman... but alas, it seems they shared the same fate as IG2. For someone as involved with RM and the RMN scene as Max is... I just wish he'd buckle down and finish a game again, instead of starting new ones all the time that are ultimately abandoned after a few vocal critics voice their discouragement. We all have cancelled games, but at a certain point, fans just begin to lose their faith in you. It's high time to win that trust back.
Exciting, but ultimately pointless.
Iron Gaia is the game that got me to REALLY dig the future RTP chipsets in RPG Maker 2000. Good memories.

And about the GW moderating stuff, god damn do I ever wish that they had modded me earlier because I wouldn't have let that stuff fly. I can't believe how careless GW admins were with electing who was allowed to moderate the Game & Demo forum. For a few years it seemed that the only requirement for the position was that you had to be a egotistical douche. I vaguely recall what happened with Iron Gaia 2 and it was definitely unfair and just borderline stupid. Situations such as that are prime examples as to why RMN is so awesome. We frequently like to moan that we're dicks here sometimes, but we're still leagues better than the site a lot of us came from.

I remember playing Backstage, but I completely forget almost everything about it. I remember being impressed though. Most horror games in RPG Maker would surprise me anyway. I never found games of the sort to be scary at all, but I would always walk away with lots of respect for the atmosphere and mood that the authors were trying to establish. Backstage definitely did it right.
Max McGee
with sorrow down past the fence
Thanks UPRC, even many years later vindication from a member of the eratz GW mod team is still somewhat appreciated. : )
I take the full blame for not finishing the cms soon enough ;3;
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