Mechjestic Interview – Skinny Bandit Planning A Console Launch

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We spoke with Skinny Bandit and discussed a potential console launch, post-launch plans, and the many gameplay systems of Mechjestic.

Story Highlight
  • Developer Skinny Bandit is working on Mechjestic, a Deck Builder with various unique mechanics.
  • The game is still up to one year away, but we recently spoke to Skinny Bandit and discussed its current progress.
  • We also went over the transition to Mechjestic, the various gameplay systems of this Deck Builder, and more.

Developer Skinny Bandit’s journey started with Mari and Bayu – The Road Home. Since then, the team has grown bigger with experienced developers, and it now hopes to make a name for itself in the Deck Builder genre.

Mechjestic stands out for its unique take on this popular genre. The steampunk setting, mechanics like refueling and visual progression of mechs as players move forward, and an Endless mode are all features that promise to deliver an enthralling experience in 2025.

As the game’s development moves full steam ahead, we sat down with creative director Jordi Lancel to discuss Skinny Bandit’s future plans, a potential console launch, and more.

Mechjestic Attempts To Innovate The Deck Builder Genre
Can you briefly introduce Mechjestic for our readers?

Jordi Lancel: Mechjestic is a steampunk-inspired Deck Building Card Game RPG. With our unique systems of Mech building and the Refuel mechanic, this Deckbuilder gives players a lot of freedom to play their cards how they see fit and make every turn count.

There is never one way to finish a fight, and Mechjestic gives players the option to find their favorite strategies!

Your first title was Mari and Bayu - The Road Home, an adventure game about an ant. How did you go from this concept to a deck builder? Was this shift inspired by any games in particular?

Jordi Lancel: Mari and Bayu – The Road Home was a passion project from Robin and Bogdan. After a few years, they hired Jordi Lancel to help with the game’s design. We took a gamble in creating something new and refreshing with the capabilities we had at the time. The parent & child co-op genre was, unfortunately, small and hard to market.

Jordi has experience working on big projects like Ori & the Will of the Wisps and has been working on multiple other concepts for years. When choosing our next project, we had several different ideas and prototypes, which included a deck builder game. After some market research, it made sense to go for Mechjestic next.

It started with an actual single-player board game (which was functional) that made its way into becoming a video game. Jordi has a great passion for card games in general, physical or digital. We’re glad that we found a perfect combination of making our dreams come true for Skinny Bandit.

Mari and Bayu - The Road Home launched on the Nintendo Switch. Do you have plans for a console release for your latest game?

Jordi Lancel: We definitely want to release the game for the next generation consoles, but we first start with the PC market. We already have a plan for when the time is right to have it become console-friendly!

How does Mechjestic’s basic gameplay loop work?

Jordi Lancel: We divided the Core Loop into four parts, which will repeat itself:

  1. You start on an Overworld, having access to the player’s current deck of cards.
  2. Traverse the Overworld in search of special cards and solve the puzzle of making your way to the Boss.
  3. The player partakes in strategic card battles, each having their own strategies. Each win grants the player a card as a reward to become stronger and more prepared.
  4. The player will use all the cards and strategies they acquired to build a deck capable of overcoming the special Boss of this Overworld.
Can you explain the refueling mechanic? How does it add to the freedom of gameplay?

Jordi Lancel: Fuel is the main source of Mechjestic. Playing cards or upgrading your Engine requires the use of Fuel. The player has the freedom to either spend Fuel that you have accumulated or Refuel the cards you have or don’t need in order to obtain more Fuel to use during your turn.

This flexible system allows the player a lot of freedom. The only limit is how the player structures and plays their deck.

What about the Endless Mode? What makes it worthy as a reward for completing the main campaign?

Jordi Lancel: Players who complete the Main Campaign will be well-versed in how Mechjestic works. After finishing the final Kingdom, this will open up the ability to play the game in a whole new Roguelite way.

The Overworlds will be randomized, all enemies and bosses become scrambled, each battle focuses on a random mechanic, and Treasures are always random and exciting to obtain. The player will be able to play through several different Endless modes to challenge themselves and see how far they come.

While traversing the random Overworlds, the player is able to use a new feature. The option to rotate the tiles around the player, creating your own perfect path to avoid enemy encounters or to use less steps in obtaining what you desire. Every Endless Mode run will never be the same and keeps you engaged to keep going for the next!

There are tons of deck-building games already available. How do you ensure Mechjestic stands out?

Jordi Lancel: We have the amazing graphics, the unique freeform card game mechanics, the visual mech building, and all that combined with the addicting deck-building mechanic of creating your own perfect style.

You think this might be enough, but no! We will also heavily include the community with Mechjestic. We will be keeping them engaged with community challenges, community mech building, community card votes, and updates to keep our dedicated players happy!

Do you see any existing deck-builders as direct competition?

Jordi Lancel: We believe the best way to see existing or upcoming competition is to see them as companions.

There are many great Deck Builders on the market already, with even more great ones coming out, like Slay the Spire 2, Breachway, or Jupiter Moons Mecha! We sincerely hope everyone will do great, and we can’t wait to play them! Deck Builder players will never complain about having more great games to play!

What are your future plans for Mechjestic? Do you have a roadmap, or will you move on to something completely different?

Jordi Lancel: We have an internal roadmap on what can be expected from Mechjestic during the launch and after. Other projects that are in concept for future releases are also part of that.

Mechjestic will keep having the focus and will obtain the care and quality, keeping the community happy with post-launch content updates. Besides that, we will absolutely look further at what happens next if Mechjestic becomes successful for Skinny Bandit.

The release date has yet to be confirmed. When can we expect Mechjestic to be released in 2025?

Jordi Lancel: We are currently working hard to have the game released before the end of 2025. We have an artist in Ukraine who is in constant danger, making it hard to predict what happens. With our current planning, we are absolutely making it possible for everyone to enjoy our game next year!

Your website states that Skinny Bandit Studios is a team of 4 developers. How challenging was the development process for you? Did you outsource parts of the game?

Jordi Lancel: The game is being created by industry veterans having the quality and specialty to work in small teams on difficult tasks.

In the process, we will only outsource any of the development if we don’t have the capabilities ourselves. For example, we are currently working together with composers to create a unique soundtrack fitting for Mechjestic.

The industry is currently experiencing mass layoffs. As a smaller studio, does this situation impact your team?

Jordi Lancel: It’s a tragedy, and it’s a shame to see that happen all around us. With team members having firsthand experience on this matter, we strive to make sure that we continue going strong despite the small team.

Mechjestic Is A Highly Ambitious Release From A Small Team

Developer Skinny Bandit hopes to become a valuable part of the growing Deck Builder genre. The studio’s work has shown a lot of promise so far, attracting interest from those fond of the genre.

We wish the team all the best as they prepare to release the game next year. We would also like to thank the Creative Director for this interview.

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