Indie Dev Interview: Super8bitRafa – The Dead of the Night

There must be something we like about Super8BitRafa, we recently covered his latest release Unichrome and now he’s back to talk about his next project The Dead of Night. 

In The Dead of the Night play the roll of an avenging nun as you take on hordes of zombies, in this bullet hell schmup which has comic book style artwork and takes inspiration from grindhouse.

We spoke to Rafa and got some of the big questions across to him and shed a little light on what we would all do for our cats, even if though they may be pure evil. In the Dead of the Night will be out in 2023 on Steam.

Please could you introduce yourself? 

I’m Rafa, a solo dev that just released his first game, Unichrome, on all major consoles (buy it today). My parents came from Mexico to the US, so I’ve always felt like I was part of two worlds – stuck in the middle of two cultures – and you’ll find a little of that in my work I think.

And could you introduce your studio? 

I don’t have a studio, I’m not really an organization, I’m just one guy — a lone developer going by the name Super8bitRafa. Armed with a laptop and a passion for games I create interactive experiences by laboriously pushing them through the birth canal of my imagination. Although I do most of it myself (the programming, the graphics, the animation, the music, the sound effects, the story, the user interface, hell — even the voice work) I find that it is best to work with others whenever possible.

Can you tell us about In The Dead of Night?

In the Dead of Night is a grindhouse, anime, horror story about a monster-hunting nun that is really just a classic-style arcade shmup at heart. The game is still very much in development so its identity is evolving every day. So far, though, it’s a little bit bullet hell, a little bit b-movie, some survivor-like gameplay has crept in lately and there’s a lot of comic book influences.

When was the concept formed and you decided to go ahead and turn it into a full game? 

The original prototype version of the game was created for a “game jam” (a 2-week hackathon to make a game from scratch according to a theme) where the top game would be eventually put in an arcade cabinet. One of my favorite arcade games is still Galaga, so I made the decision to make a SHMUP-style game. Most shmups are all about spaceships or airplanes so I wanted to purposefully do something different to try and stand out.

In the Dead of Night

Why a nun with a gun? It’s a great character. 

I’ve sort of had the idea of a sexy nun that fights monsters in the back of my head for a while now. (I even prototyped a game called “Bikini Nuns from Mars” a couple of years back.) It’s an off-beat concept that appeals to the 12-year-old inside me that never grew up. I’m very attracted to making characters that are contradictory in some way. I’m also a huge fan of the movies “Planet Terror”, “Kill Bill” and “Dusk till Dawn” and want to bring that same kind of energy into a game.

Are you enjoying bringing new energy to the shmup genre?

I’m not sure that anything I’m doing with this game is really that new TBH. I’m really just putting in work and trying to do the best I can with a genre that hasn’t been mainstream in a long time. I think, inevitably, a lot of my own personality seeps into the DNA of anything that I create. And I think if you knew me personally you could look at this game and say “yeah Rafa made that”.

How did you come up with the artwork and style? It looks awesome.

Part of the game jam (that I mentioned earlier) was an art contest for best cover art. I’ve always been a big fan of comic books and a lot of my drawing style comes from looking at artists like Jim Lee, Todd McFarlane, and John Ramita (Sr and Jr) so I naturally gravitated towards mimicking those styles for the cover art. The in-game art is a little more Cartoon Network though. Mostly though I’m just drawing stuff and seeing what comes out.

Why do people love killing zombies so much?

It’s a guiltless pleasure that appeals to our darkest and most basic instincts. That’s my guess anyway.

Will people do anything to save their cats?

Yes of course people will do anything to save their cats! I know I would. That’s also a big part of this game. You are saving a cat that (like all cats) may or may not be pure evil.

When is it out and how can people stay updated?

In the Dead of Night will be out in early 2023 (on steam and TBD)

You can follow on twitter @TheNunWithGun

Wishlist on Steam for updates:

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Thanks for reading our Indie Dev Interview: Super8bitRafa – The Dead of the Night, for more interesting articles on the indie games industry, check out the links below. 






This Article was written by: Harry Cole

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