Interview: Pastille Games’ Jinn Karlsson Talks ‘Curling Kids’

Pastille Games has quickly become one of my favorite indie studios. In addition to pumping out fun and charming games like Calm Cards – Klondike and Bunny Tower at a tremendous rate, the team at Pastille are also an amazingly friendly, open, and chatty group of people. Which is why when they announced their latest upcoming title, Curling Kids, I immediately got in touch with Jinn Karlsson for another interview. Check it out below!

Jinn, it’s a pleasure to have you back in the hot seat for another interview! Just in case there’s anyone reading who didn’t catch our first interview, would you mind introducing yourself and your role at Pastille Games? 

Hello! My name is Jinn and I work with marketing and lots of other small things that need to be done at Pastille. This was also the first time I got to help make levels for a game in Unity! It was really fun to get the chance. I made clouds move, yay!

Pastille’s main goal is to create fun, colorful games without violence and to get as many people as possible to play games!

You’re here today to chat about Curling Kids, your studio’s upcoming new game. Can you please give me a quick ‘elevator pitch’ of it and its gameplay?

Sure! Like you can guess from the title, the base game takes place on a curling lane but instead of sliding stones you throw people and try to hit goals or targets! You have to be ready to react and use your problem solving and quick throwing skills! It is super funny and when you feel up to it, you can unlock a whole new world that has a zombie city theme! Other then completing the levels you can collect all the diamonds, unlock new characters to play as, and try to beat the extra challenges that give you more gold!

What kind of gamers will it appeal to?

Definitely 2 types. If you like to play casually the first levels are great and you can get quite far as you learn, unlocking new curling levels and characters! Further on in the game it has more puzzle elements which are really fun.

If you like a challenge and like to complete games 100% it is REALLY hard, thanks to our mad genius Mikael (who came up with the game). I can’t tell you how many times we’ve begged him to lower the difficulty or at least have more throws per level. He just laughs and says, “What? This level is way to easy!”

But after we tested it with different people and children I think we finally have found a perfect mix of casual fun and hardcore collecting now! 😀

Curling is very popular in places like Scotland and Canada, but it’s still a pretty niche sport overall. What made you guys decide to base a game on it?

Curling is pretty big in Sweden! And we have a playful expression in Swedish, “Curling Parents.” It basically means that you do everything your children want, like give them candy to make them stop misbehaving or clean their room even though you told them to do it themselves. So it’s like a play on words.

But the more you play you realise that even though it looks like curling, it’s way more fun! 😉

How long has Curling Kids been in development for so far and when do you expect it to be ready for release on the App Store? Also, will it be a free-to-play or premium title?

We have worked on the game a few months in active mode, and been planning/thinking about it some more while we were finishing other projects.

The base game will be free, that includes 40 curling themed levels and a sneak peak zombie level. Then, if you want, you can unlock the full zombie pack which has more challenging and tricky levels. They are definitely my favorite! And the game should be out next month on the App Store and a little bit later on Google Play!

You’re also developing a zombie-filled add-on pack for Curling Kids. I’m a big zombie fan, so please tell me more about that!

Think of the curling levels as warm up for the zombie ones! They require more skill, planning and speed! Since we have decided not to have violence in our games but still wanted zombies, we had to give it some time before we figured out how to incorporate them in our game. It’s so easy to just resolve to include a little bit of violence, much easier then having a brainstorming session trying to solve it in other ways! Finally we came up with the idea that you could cure the sick zombies by bumping into them with your character! So many of these levels will require that you can heal all the zombies before they reach their target. Like I said before, it takes place in a city so you have to be quick to save the citizens!

Aside from Curling Kids, do you have any other new games or updates to existing titles in the works that you can tell me about?

After this we are going to put the finishing touches on Unicorn, the lovely game that lets you throw corncobs at animals to turn them into unicorns, like hencorn, goatcorn and llamacorn! We will then make a new card game in a different setting than Calm Cards – Klondike. And we also want to do a multiplayer game — super excited about that, can’t tell you any details but we are thinking hard about what Pastille could contribute to online gaming.

Is there anything else you’d like to add before we wrap up?

Just a quick reminder that Pastille is a pretty awesome game studio, we are funny, amazing, beautiful, and most of all humble.

All joking aside, if you want to take part in what we do you can follow us on social media or join our mailing list.

Thanks for the talk! BYE.

Bye, Jinn. And thanks for another fun interview! I really can’t wait to check out Curling Kids now!

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