Info

Dev Game Club

Join hosts and game industry veterans Brett Douville and Tim Longo as they explore older titles to talk about the influences those games had and what we can learn from them even today.
RSS Feed
Dev Game Club
2024
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2023
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2022
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2021
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2020
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2019
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2018
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2017
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March


Categories

All Episodes
Archives
Categories
Now displaying: February, 2024
Feb 28, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on rotoscoped games by hopping aboard The Last Express, the graphic adventure from Jordan Mechner and Smoking Car Productions of 1997 via publisher Broderbund. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
To Vienna (Tim) and past Epernay (Brett)

Issues covered: our history with the game, playing the game on the iPad, the adventure game at the time, budget and sales, some history of the game, the edutainment industry, critical response, how many discs, cost of goods, the history of Epernay, generic settings vs the highly specific dates in the game, the overwhelm, jumping onto a moving train, photo research, pulling the brake, what to do with a dead body, trial and error, the various ways things can play out from just the first puzzle, rain in Europe in 1914, a digression into multiple speed CD-ROMs, getting into rotoscoping, a 3D modeled train with rotoscoped characters on top, chasing after a character in the hall, walk-boxes with Z values, the screen door effect, a linear game in space vs an open-ended game in time, synchronicity, the sense of a train trip, prioritizing animation vs input, mechanics-forward vs simulation-forward, what players care about and what they see.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Jordan Mechner, Broderbund, GoldenEye 007, Diablo, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Fallout, Curse of Monkey Island, Riven, MYST, Jonathan Ackley, Larry Ahern, Quake, SW: Jedi Knight: DF2, Outlaws, LucasArts, Turok, Shadow Warrior, Hexen II, Duke Nuke'em, Postal, Age of Empires, Final Fantasy VII, Wing Commander: Prophecy, Xwing vs TIE Fighter, Colony Wars, Interstate '76, Mario Kart 64, Diddy Kong Racing, Grand Theft Auto, Gran Turismo, OddWorld, Sam and Max Hit the Road, Bethesda Game Studios, Bill Tiller, Day of the Tentacle, Sierra, Phantasmagoria, Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Father, Zoetrope Studios, Francis Ford Coppola, Smoking Car Productions, Tomi Pierce, Doug Carlston, Chris Remo, The Learning Company, Another World, Prince of Persia, Baldur's Gate, Final Fantasy VII, PlayStation, Sony, Daron Stinnett, Scream (series), Grim Fandango, Quadrilateral Cowboy, Blendo Games, Thirty Flights of Loving, Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express, Paul Verhoeven, RoboCop, Basic Instinct, Starship Troopers, Elle, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Skyrim, Ron Gilbert, Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, Deadline, Infocom, Zork, Ben Sarason, Arkham Asylum, Red Dead Redemption (series), RockStar, Tomb Raider (series), Brandon Fernandez, Core Design, Mario (series), Uncharted (series), Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
Finish the game (?)/ Explore further

Errata and Extra:
The lead animator on CMI was Mark Overney (!), and it was my mistake, I was thinking it had been Charlie Ramos

Blendo Games is Brendon Chung

Paul Verhoeven is Dutch, and he did direct Basic Instinct

Links:
The Last Express: Revisiting An Unsung Classic

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 21, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series of one-off episodes about games that featured rotoscoping, turning to 1989's Prince of Persia. We set it in its time and discuss its publisher and author before talking about the game proper. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
To levels 4 (Tim) and 8 (Brett)

Issues covered: the series hook, games from 1989, rotoscoping, similarities to Tomb Raider, tiles and metrics, a more systemic/discretized game, precision and replay, figuring out the level enough to know where to save, that speedrunning feeling, do you ever wish you could rewind time, requiring more game due to mechanics, having to learn the whole game, the feeling of running and jumping, the tension of animation and input, multiple inputs, the intertwining of animation and design, the feeling of swashbuckling, the great feeling, action as character and commitment, wondering how many people finished the game, the punishing feeling, checkpointing, punch the eagle, the great feel of parrying, pushing through the enemies, tells, the approaches of different guards, cinematic combat, difficulty in text adventures and player appeal, chipping away at knowledge, adding drama, resources and the doppelganger, level design and reuse, animating bits of the world, his books, mixing up the skeleton.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Another World, Jordan Mechner, Broderbund Software, Populous, Game Boy, Super Mario Land, Tetris, Ghosts and Goblins, Sega, Golden Axe, Shinobi, SimCiy, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ultima (series), Star Trek, Final Fantasy II, Castlevania III, Print Shop, Choplifter, Karateka, Lode Runner, Hypercard, The Last Express, Agatha Christie, Tomb Raider, Triple Click, Plague Tale: Innocence, Dark Souls, Jamie Griesemer, Halo, Mario 64, 1001 Arabian Nights, Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, Errol Flynn, Indiana Jones, Civilization, Robin Hood, Captain Blood, Daffy Duck, MegaMan (series), Kirk Hamilton, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ben Kingsley, Final Fantasy VI, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
Another rotoscoped classic

Links:
Making Prince of Persia

June: 1:01:00 or thereabouts

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 14, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we begin a little miniseries of games which heavily feature rotoscoping and different ways in which that technology is used, starting with Another World (1991). We set the game in its time, talk about rotoscoping, and discuss a lot about the world and games which seem descended from it. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Whole darn thing (well, almost, Tim)

Issues covered: swinging back and forth in cages, starting and stopping the game, rotoscoping and some places it's been used, the basics of rotoscoping, how far Tim got in the past, baffling fluidity, echoes of other media, excellent character design, a "yes" game, other influences, thinking of this in terms of Mario, a cinematic moment, not making the movement a goal, choosing moments over systems, a fork in the lineage road, doing a project of this length solo, having a singular vision, hinting what you should pay attention to, the limits of tech and whether it can do anything for you, working on games that you wouldn't necessarily play.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Final Fantasy IX, Tomb Raider, Eric Chahi, Delphine Software, Flashback, Amiga, Final Fantasy IV/II, LoZ: Link to the Past, Super Mario World, Return of Samus, Sonic the Hedgehog, Sega Genesis, Monkey Island 2, Civilization, Prince of Persia, Commander Keen, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Walt Disney, Richard Linklater, Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, Keanu Reeves, Karateka, Ico, Metal Gear Solid, Tron, SpaceChem, Space Team, David Cage, Nintendo, Rare, MegaMan (series), Metroid, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Dragon's Lair, Don Bluth, mysterydip, id Software, DOOM (1993), Mike Fisher, Shenmue, Dreamcast, Madden (series), John Romero, Carlos, Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
Some other rotoscoped game!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, Insta: devgameclub, Threads: DevGameClub, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 7, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we return to our series on Alan Wake with a special interview with Sam Lake, Creative Director at Remedy Entertainment. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Podcast breakdown:
0:52 Interview
1:02:20 Break
1:02:50 Outro

Issues covered: getting started with PCs and TTRPGs, starting out as a writer, starting with a positive audience, Greyhawk/Temple of Elemental Evil, coming out of the demoscene, teaming up with Apogee, finding ways to insert story into games, selling the IP due to its success, knowing they'd have the ability to make something new, second album syndrome, concepting tons of ideas to make the dream game, themes that stuck around, wanting a flawed main character whose not an action hero, writing a story about the creative process, inspirations, post-modern writing and games, how to work within the grab bag of design elements, the sauna crew, making hard decisions, a sense of relief, retaining the story and thematic elements, pulling out a victory, having a different feel because of all the extra built stuff, supporting conflict and action, keeping character motivations in sync with player expectations, early game management, adding transmedia elements and tools, using voiceover to guide the player, integrating more video, the talk show, blending those elements well to expand the game world and character, extending the value of the Easter egg, making the connection between the games a surprise, the Remedy-Connected Universe, dreaming up characters with the actor in mind, the musical number, leveraging Easter eggs, Tim's streaming commitments.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Death Rally, Max Payne, Control, Commodore 64, Petri Järvilehto, Dungeons & Dragons, Apogee/3DRealms, Duke Nuke'em, George Broussard, Scott Miller, Dark Justice, Rockstar, Janos Flosser, Hitman, IO Interactive, Stephen King, On Writing, David Lynch, Twin Peaks, Paul Auster, Bret Easton Ellis, LOST, Hideo Kojima, Quantum Break, Matthew Porretta, Courtney Hope, Illka Villi, James McCaffrey, Old Gods of Asgard/Poets of the Fall, Tim Schafer, Ken Levine, BioShock, FireWatch, Gone Home, Sam & Max, David Wolinsky, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
???

Notes:
I did not edit out GameThing's Season 8 theme, since they have apparently already let people know that was what is coming next.

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

1