- Tell us a bit about yourself.

I'm just an aged, humble story-teller who enjoys telling his tales to you. I really hope you enjoy them. I'm with CipSoft for over 10 years and with Tibia for even more. It all begun with my interests in Sci-Fi in my youth which eventually switched more to Fantasy. I guess the latter happened because the Fantasy games of that area suited me and my friends better then the few Sci-Fi ones. I enjoyed watching Sci-Fi and Fantasy Movies, reading books, writing own stories and later playing Fantasy games on the first incarnations of PC's. I fancied a career as an author but I never really tried to get a foothold in that unsafe territory and instead, I tried to learn something more practical. But, I was not truly committed to these studies and wondered where that would eventually lead to... and if I'd like where I would end up. When the opportunity arose to professionally work for the game I had already invested so much of my time and creativity in, I still hesitated somewhat but I convinced myself to give it a try at least. And as you see... here I am, still trying - well, trying to entertain you ;o)

- Define CipSoft in 3 words.

Paying my pizzas!

- What was your inspiration to create such amazing places like MOLS or Hellgate?

MOLS was not my creation ;o) Usually there is no specific inspiration. There is an idea and there is what can be done within the Tibian system. While you build an area, you go from the broader idea into specifics along with the creation. While putting the pieces of an area together you might come up with ideas for some landmark or gimmick. Not all fits into the concept, so you note them down for later use. Some ideas need new graphics and that might also push them into a later update, depending on the workload. When you picture an area in your mind, you automatically have some ideas what would look fine or what would be nice to try out. Not all things may turn out as expected in the Tibia perspective, though. So some things are then scrapped and others might become the base of something completely different than the thing you had originally in mind. It's a good thing it's a creative process as it is often inspiring on its own.

- What was the point of creating secret places like the secret sheep level?

The existence of curiosity and the feeling that curiosity should be rewarded now and then. Curiosity is what drives mankind and it's an integral part of our nature. While pitched fights might give us adrenalin, secrets stimulate us differently. What a fight might be for our heartbeat, secrets are for our fantasy. This is how popular Mystery TV series work. They give us some secrets and our imagination runs wild. I'm impressed with what kind of interpretations people come up with - even in cases that were only a sidenote of content creation and not some actual intentionally added secret.

- In your eyes.. what's your best creation in Tibia?

I recently thought about that because a friend of mine, who is working in a completely different sector, sentimentally told me about some project he enjoyed like nothing else before and after. In general, I don't like classifications like 'best', though. If I declare something my 'favorite food' for instance, I'd end up eating 'not my favorite food' most of the time. Such classifications are often more a hindrance then anything else. Many things have their merits, at the right time, at the right place. I'd like to answer the question in a broader sense, though. My best creation would be fun that a player might have while experiencing my content, or a smile that someone might have while playing. I don't do all those things for ME after all... No, I do them for the money ;o) Nah, in the end all my ideas are my children in some way. Should I love one less because I have a newer one? Still there is often room for improvement and I learn from each area and theme that I can explore together with the players.

- I personally find the Genesis of Tibia quite interesting... Which are your inspirations? Could you suggest some writer for all the RPG lovers?

I'm rather reluctant to recommend specific authors. It's a matter of personal taste. And it's a matter of how lucky the author was in choosing a mode and topic etc. An author is not necessarily good because he could shine in one book or series. Give him another topic or different ambitions and he might be at loss. The modern market is quite clustered with authors that cater different tastes. Enough to find some that fit the individual taste. What someone interested in "Fantasy" should do, though, is give the 'classics' of the genre at least a try. Even if only to see how styles and tastes have changed over the time. Some of those authors have been pioneers. They did not have the plethora of source material that is available in our days. So read some Robert E. Howard, Michael Moorcook, Fritz Leiber, Jack Vance, Tolkien and eventually read some of the first authors that were influenced by those pioneers like Piers Anthony and Raymond Feist, up to modern 'classics' like Robert Jordan and George R. Martin. You might like a few of those, dislike others but it helps to have seen some of their work. In general, I personally found books written in established RPG settings often quite entertaining.

- What's your opinion about the new pvp system on Open Pvp servers?

I personally have so little interest in PvP that I can't say much about it. PvP is just not my thing. Especially in Tibia where death has consequences. I feel bad for me if I'm killed, I feel bad for the other guy if I kill him. So there is no real win scenario for me in which I'd feel comfortable. Keeping this in mind, I better leave the discussion of pros and cons of the system to the people who actually care about it and know what they are talking about.

- What would be the things you miss the most about the original Tibia?

Since I'm mostly concerned about content, that's not really a question to me. Most of the content is still there after all. And changes that seemed quite big in the past are so familiar by now, that it's really hard to remember how the game actually was before them. It's easy to forget the drawbacks of the past. In the perspective of content creation, we have far more tools at our disposal now than before and they are becoming more and more. We have come a far way, from very humble beginnings, and probably only a few players are still around from these times.

- Is there something you don't like about the "new Tibia"?

At the end of the day we all have to live with changes. We live in a changing (real) world, which is far more dramatic than some changes in a game. As I said, it's easy to forget the bad parts of the past and to focus only on one aspect of a change. That's a very personal view. If you enjoyed that one aspect, you might not feel at the winning side of a change. Some aspects of a game sometimes simply have to be changed, though, for example, because they are misused - also, if only by a minority. In an online community all that it takes is a few people playing foul to ruin the fun for many others. Some game aspects have far reaching consequences branching into other areas of a game and this always has to be taken into consideration. It's hard to see the bigger picture, all the more, in advance, so change IS often inevitable. You also have to keep in mind that this is not a single player game. We can't say: Oh well, if they like to do this trick to cheat the game, let them. It would affect by far too many people and game mechanics. And to be precise, to answer your question, we would also have to define 'new Tibia' and 'old Tibia'. After all, I could argue that even "vocations" are part of the "new Tibia" ;o) The good and the bad thing of an online game is that it evolves. Even if that was not the case, if everything in a game were to remain as it is, the community and the taste would evolve nonetheless. If you say that there was an "old" Tibia that you miss, then you have fond memories about some aspects that you liked and that's a good thing. Is quite probable though that the "real" old Tibia wouldn't live up to those memories in your heart.

- CipSoft has announced some time ago, that you would be working in a new Client. Since you actually can open 2 accounts at the same time, using flash and stand alone clients... Will we be able to open the client more than once?

Certainly it's not "me" who is working on the new client. Actually, I'm not fully aware of what features are planned. It would be better to ask someone of a different department who's actually working on that stuff.

- A huge amount of tibians didn't like the fact you can't attack your party members any longer. What do you think about this?

It's nothing that affects me personally or my gameplay. If something gets changed, you have to put all those abuse scenarios into consideration and the technical conditions, and in the end you have to answer the question: is the change necessary and is it really worth it? I guess that's what happened when the feature was reviewed. I personally have no hand in such a decision and don't know what led to it. Here you also have to keep in mind that maybe you mainly saw the positive side of this feature and did not have to deal with the problems and abuse it gave birth to.

- There were a lot of people who used to train for hours and used to talk meanwhile.. Don't you think this change has damaged the RPG in Tibia?

If people talk or not depends on people, not the system. People can easily hunt some lesser prey and have a chat meanwhile. Or do some fishing or whatever they like. The quality of the chat has nothing to do with the activity. It's not like watching sparks and dust clouds was entertaining. So - a less entertaining activity was marginalized, that in itself is no great harm. There is nothing hindering you to enjoy a chat with friends or strangers.

- Will you ever contemplate continuing or revamping some of the old maps like MOLS and Desert Dungeon?

We will continue to revamp areas now and then, but on the other hand, some have become that classic and iconic that a revamp would take away some of its charm. Given that we have only limited resources, we have to ask ourselves: is a revamp necessary and would it be a good thing? Does an area look that ugly or is it that unpopular and unhandy that we have to re-evaluate and possibly change it? Do we have the time to put effort into such a project without crippling another? I think there is no urgent need for heavy revamps currently, and we are in the comfortable position to carefully pick what we might change. Our main goal is always to create entertaining and engaging content. If we decide that it's time to modernize some part of the game we will do it. The criteria here are mostly urgency and possibility. If we do something "new" in an old area, a revamp of that area might then be more likely, even if it would not be that pressingly urgent.

- Is there anything that you would like to add to Tibia, but it got rejected? *(If Yes) Could you give us an example?

As far as I can recall, I actually have added most of my major ideas in some form. What was not possible at a certain point found its way into the game later. Some concepts, though, were never realized. I think I already told somewhere, that the original concept for Liberty Bay was a mixup of the pirate theme with European folklore about unicorns and leprechauns. They would have been the creation of the race that was opposing the creators of the Quarra. In the end, it was decided though that we come up with a more conventional setting. That does not mean though that there will never be unicorns and leprechauns.

- What could you tell us about the Bonelord Language? Could you tell us if it's just a random number combination of numbers or if it's solvable? It's related to a quest? (*If it's solvable: Could you give a small tip to solve it?).

Could I? Of course. Should I? Of course not ;o) It would be a mistake in so many areas to say anything about it ... By the way, there is so many interesting stuff written by players about it, go and read that instead. I would do them a disservice in ruling some speculations out and acknowledging others.

- What means Tibia to you?

After all those years it has become part of my live. Even more a good deal of the existing content was made by me so the game has a familiarity to me that is hard to explain.

- What's your opinion about Open Tibia Servers?

Intentionally or not, they are hurting Tibia - and without Tibia they'd vanish quite soon. So it's a bit of a paradox but this is also something I, as a content creator, have little influence on.

- There used to exist a room at MOLS where you could read the tomes, in the past... Why it was closed?

I have no idea. The maze wasn't my creation, and I didn't close the room. I guess you'd have to ask someone else about it.

- Is there any way to get inside the Collosus, at Kazordoon?

This was never really a secret and is a piece of information that was freely available once upon a time. This information seemed to have gotten lost at one point, though. Yes, the Collosus can be opened, but only with the correct key. This key, however, is not in player hands.

- (To finish) If I say Y, you say X game:

1. PVP -> nothing that suits me 2. Fansites -> the lifeblood of Tibia 3. TibiaEvents -> Tibia certainly can't have too many 4. Botters -> Tibia certainly can't have too less 5. RPG -> is made by the Players, no game can 'RPG' you

Thank you for reading our newest article with knightmare!



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