Welcome back to week 7 of the Traiteur dev blog!
I originally wanted to show you more of the game in motion this week, but we’re still finalizing some of the prettier things that will make showing it off much more exciting.
Instead, this week I want to get a little personal — we’ll be talking about why we chose the name Traiteur.
What’s in a name?
As a concept, it came about during the final months of our initial game debut, Close Order.
Traiteur was originally a small prototype about emoticons going to war in a world built from ASCII symbols. Our narrative that sprung up from those bare-bone roots was built around a lone emoticon embarking on a quest to save the land from destruction.
In south Louisiana, Cajun folklore tells stories of “traiteurs,” who were faith healers. These healers existed for centuries, and were highly revered in Cajun culture. For the people who lived in our region known as Acadiana as early as decades ago, the nearest hospital may have been many miles away — meaning that no doctors were close by, and access to medical care could be virtually nonexistent.
People turned to the local traiteur (“traiteuse” is the female version) for alternative healing in those situations. The healer usually performed the laying on of hands, and purportedly could heal toothaches, earaches, warts, bleeding, and more.
Now, with the pervasiveness of modern medicine and ease of access to healthcare, very few traiteurs and traiteuses exist. Tradition dictates that the knowledge must be passed down to someone of the opposite gender to continue the practice, so it can be very easy for the tradition to not be able to be passed on.
Most importantly out of all this, though, is that the traiteur/traiteuse must be asked to perform the healing — and only when the need is great.
For us, Traiteur is the result of our asking if we could “really” make games. It’s about healing.
It’s healing after a long and challenging first project. Close Order did well enough to fund Traiteur, and at the end of the day that’s all we could ask for. However, our efforts are still very much a lean hustle towards our dreams (we all work other jobs in addition to Raconteur).
Traiteur is our healing. It’s not just a game; it’s proof, to us, that we can do this. It’s tangible validation of what we think we can do with a story. It’s a concrete demonstration of what a Raconteur game can be, and we’re damn proud to be able to bring this to life.
We may not be a large or famous studio, but we believe – and I believe, too – with every fiber of our collective being that this is something truly unique and special.
My humble hope is that you’ll feel the same way, too, when you get to play the game later this year. I genuinely hope that you feel the same spark of joy and laughter that I felt the very first time I experienced the game’s opening.
This week was more personal than normal, and I hope you enjoyed learning more about our strange little project.
I look forward to giving you more insight into the game next week!
As always, it was a pleasure having you with us — can’t wait to see you again next week. :)