During PAX East, I got the chance to sit down with Alex Zandra Van Chestein—an independent game developer and member of the queer game development collective Ikonoclast.❤ Her upcoming game, One Last Cup, features a group of four cyberpunk operatives sharing coffee before their incoming mission. All four main characters are women, and the game features queer issues in many of its dialogue branches.
In the middle of a somewhat-crowded hallway overlooking the Expo Hall, Alex and I came together and talked about her game in detail.
Ana: Tell me a bit about yourself, Alex.
Alex: My name is Alex Zandra Van Chestein. I am officially an independent game developer since Monday [April 18, 2016]. I’ve worked for six years at Frima, I’ve done a ton of little games before then and also during that time. The most formal thing I worked on was Chariot; I was the game designer and writer, and I designed some of the levels. Other than that, I’ve been working on a ton of stuff, like mobile games, social games—stuff like that. But One Last Cup is my first actual indie game with a small team that I’m doing, and it’s very exciting.
Ana: So, tell me a bit about One Last Cup.
Alex: It’s a cyberpunk coffee shop conversation game. It’s kind of a setup to most of the cyberpunk-themed games you see where you have a team about to do a job, like a heist-type job where you have the technologist, the mechanic, the muscle, the fast-talker. Instead of actually doing the job, though, your role in the game is you decide what they talk about over coffee before leaving. So some folks have referred to it as the diner scene in Reservoir Dogs, if that was the whole point of the game.