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Blog: A Visit To Papermint

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I stopped off in glamorous BETHNAL GREEN on the way home, to go to a MEETING! Yes, a MEETING, i am SO grown-up!

I was off to visit a software company called Avaloop for something John The Publisher had contacted me about earlier in the week. He's LINKED up with one of them, Doctor Babsi, who also runs an agency getting music into video games. She'd looked at the SUMMARY of his ARTISTES (hem hem), saw my description and said "He'd be JUST right for our game!"

One thing led to another and before you can say "Does it need a ram pak?" I'd written a song for them about their forthcoming game, PAPERMINT. They wanted something a bit English sounding and wonky to use for a video, so that is what I gave them, with added CATCHINES, and I was off to their offices to talk to them about it.

They're based in one of those huge disused DEPOT buildings that should, by all rights, be appearing in Life On Mars. From the outside it wasn't very nice, as it was DARK and WET and there was no signage, but they came and collected me and inside it became more like a Multimedia Office from off the TELLY - there were guitars, video gsmes, all manner of cushions. "Gosh!" I thought. "This isn't our office", said Babsi, "we share it with someone else." Their ACTUAL office was a much smaller room where lots of WORK was clearly going on, featuring Martin and Claudia aka the rest of the team. They moved over from AUSTRIA a few months ago to work on the final aspects of the game and they're now a week or so away from LAUNCHING the game and so were obviously hard at it, but still they were the SMILIEST office I think I've ever been in. Honestly, they seemed SO happy and EXCITED about what they were doing that when I left my face was ACHING from joining in all the smiling!

They said they really liked the song, and also ANOTHER one, written by The Words In My Lyrics a couple of weeks ago, which I'd sent them. It was all very exciting and we discussed ways to USE them - I'm going to make some minor ADJUSTMENTS to the theme tune over the weekend, and then I guess we'll see what happens when they've got a bit of time free!

After that I had a TOUR of Papermint itself - it was AMAZING. I'd had a go on it at home the night before and got CONFUSED, like my NAN when she first got a video recorder. "You're not really the target audience" they TACTFULLY agreed when I mentioned this, for LO! it is basically for Young Girls, which I am clearly NOT. It does look fab tho - you get to design a character (AVATAR, i guess) who wanders around a world made entirely of sheets of paper. There's LOADS of ways of interacting and changing your clothes (you can design your own), making things, earning currency, buying clothes and flats, talking to other people, showing emotion (i nearly CRIED when they showed me a character doing SAD DANCING) and... well, just THOUSANDS of different cute little ASPECTS which all put together a) confused my befuddled old mind but b) looked EXACTLY like the sort of thing The Youth seem to enjoy.

It was TREMENDOUSLY exciting and they were BUZZING with all sorts of ideas for how they could improve it and move it forward. It all seemed DRIVEN with a desire to make something GOOD and LOVELY too, which is how THEY all seemed to be too. An Example: when I came in Martin said "Would you like a coffee?" I said YES PLEASE and he disappeared... for ten minutes! He came back with a TRAY containing a cup and saucer, individual coffee percolater, a small glass of water, a small glass of milk, and a plate of CAKE! NICE cake too! And the coffee was DELICIOUS!

So yes, I went home with a big SMILE on my face eager to help out in any way that I could. I think this is going to be DELIGHTFUL!

posted 4/12/2009 by MJ Hibbett

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