Interview with Henrik Smiding

Back in 1990 we started on a simple adventure game engine in AMOS, this evolved into a second version, but the current version 3 is done in assembler and began its life in 1994.

It varied between project manager, designer, programmer and sound artist. As you might have noticed, the sound part got the lowest priority :) Basically I did everything but the graphics and music scores.

The 'elk' part we took from a refrigerator magnet of a traffic sign that warns about elks. The shadow part I do not remember :)

Mainly DevPac for the engine, Deluxe Paint for the graphics, ProTracker for the music, and AMOS Pro for the game editor. A lot of other small utilities were also used.

Monkey Island and Operation Stealth basically. I liked the interface and transparency in Operation Stealth. We looked at others too, but usually the graphics or the game engine (or both) were crap :)

Initially we wanted a floppy version only, so I made a lot of compression algorithms for graphics, text, and sound. Later in the development, our publisher said that they only wanted a CD version, complete with speech and a German version of the game. This proved very difficult since the one they got to do the translation had never played the game, and translated our text files directly. After two months work from my part, making a German version and changing all the texts to the ones they sent, they said that the translation was shitty and they wanted to do it all over again. On top of this I did not have a CD-ROM for my Amiga, so I had no way to test the speech. This was probably for the best, since the amount of text in the game would not fit as speech samples on one CD anyway. It was made for A1200/4000 and above... :) We required the AGA chipset.

Chaos theory? :) We took some inspiration from the movie trilogy "Back to the future" and Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The rest was intense sessions at my house where we tried different jokes and story lines. It was not my idea to make Robin Hood a homosexual cross-dresser though :)

We had thought of doing a dark X-Files story in the beginning, but we choose to do the humoristic time-travel story instead. Keep in mind that we were both teenagers when we wrote the story and the sarcastic jokes. If I did it today I would probably change a lot :)

We have no publisher as far as I know. They disappeared a long long time ago. I was contacted about a year ago, by a guy that used to work there and wanted to release the unfinished game on a "Retro Classix" CD that his new company were making. Unfortunately the version they released was an old(er) beta version, that we sent to the published for evaluation, and it had a couple of missing files. Since the payment also went missing, I wasn't that motivated to send a 'fix'.

It depends on if you want sound effects or not :) The code is 99% complete, the graphics also 98-99%, dialogues 98%, music 50%, and sound effects about 5%... tops :) There is a dialogue in the end scene that is also missing, since we couldn't decide if we should mention the sequel or not :)

A combination of girlfriends, publisher demands, my Amiga dying, Amiga going bankrupt, and motivation of the graphic artist when he realised that he wouldn't get rich from the game. I worked on and off for about two years after that, but when I started at the university I had no more time to spare.

Yes. There is a lot of functions and possibilities that aren't even used in In Shadow of Time, like being able to change which character you control. The editor is not an easy tool to use though, and we never did a commercial version from it due to lack of time.

No, I work at Ericsson in Lund, Sweden, developing user interfaces and components for mobile phone developers like Sony Ericsson.

All games from MicroProse and Sid Meier, and of course Elite - Frontier.