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Interview: 2D Boy - die Macher von World of Goo PDF Drucken E-Mail
Geschrieben von Simon & Henrik am Sonntag, 14. September 2008 (6366 Leser)   
Sonntag, 14. September 2008
Interview: 2D Boy - die Macher von World of Goo
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GamesCathedral: Hi there! Who are you? Could you please introduce yourself to our readers?

Ron: Hi, I'm Ron, the left brain of 2D Boy.  I deal with the programming, production, and business development stuff.

Kyle: Hi, I'm Kyle, the right brain of 2D Boy. I'm the designer and also do music and art and stuff, and try to fill the game with lots of emotions.


GC: So you are working at 2D Boy. What did you do before you've founded 2D boy? What was the reason, that you've left EA and formed 2D Boy?

Ron: Making a game has been a dream of mine since I was in elementary school.  It wasn't until I worked at EA and had a few games under my belt that I felt ready to go out and do it independently.  In retrospect, I'm really lucky to have met Kyle.  He's the most talented game designer I've ever met.

Kyle: We were really crazy back then, and we were having an Existential CrisisTM where it seemed like being employed anywhere was the worst thing in the world, and we wanted to just make our own game, no matter what the financial risk. The reasoning was: Even if we totally fail, at least this will have all been a really fun learning experience. We hoped anyway.


GC: Now let's talk about World of Goo itself. The game was scheduled to be released on PC and Mac. How did you get the idea to develop a version for Wii?

Ron: We were approached by Dan Adelman from Nintendo of America when the idea for WiiWare was being developed.  At first we were trying to come up with ideas for WiiWare games to work on after World of Goo was finished, but then we realized World of Goo could work really well on the Wii, and the rest is history.


GC: Do you consider to release the game also on other platforms later on?

Ron: As delicious as Goo is, we've eaten so much Goo over the past two years that it's hard to think about eating more of it.  That said, we've thought about making a version for the iPhone.

Kyle: Maybe DS too if people like it enough. The important thing is, whatever platform, we want to make sure it's a very high quality game experience, with extremely tight controls.




GC: The game looks pretty crazy. How did you get the idea for World of Goo?

Kyle: If you're curious, you can still find a small game called Tower of Goo I made back in grad school as a part of the Experimental Gameplay Project. But we've come a long way since then! World of Goo builds on the basic gameplay mechanic - dragging and dropping living squirming globs of goo to build huge structures and tongues and flying machines and other living contraptions. The important thing was to make a game that's constantly fun, all the time, none of that boring filler stuff. If any level was boring, it got chopped out.


GC: Could you please describe the story and the basic gameplay of World of Goo?

Kyle: World of Goo is filled with Goo Balls. And in each level, there is a mysterious pipe dangling out of the sky. The goal for each level is to build things with the Goo Balls, to reach to pipe, and get all your remaining Goo Balls sucked up. You just drag and drop to build with the Goo. The mystery is - where does the pipe go? What happens when they get to the other side? You meet a bunch of characters and an ambiguously evil corporation along the way. It's kind of like Wizard of Oz, if Dorothy were made of Goo and she stuck to all her friends and if they built a giant floating tongue over to the Emerald City, and then some enlightenment stuff happens, and nobody is sure if they feel good or bad about it. It's unusual to describe, but it's actually very intuitive to play, since everything is physics based.


GC: How do you use the functionalities of the Wiimote?

Ron: The Wiimote is used like a mouse by pointing, clicking, and dragging Goo Balls on the screen.  We also use the rumble feature to make the player feel the game better.

Kyle: And you can play co-operatively through the whole game with up to 4 players if you want, as long as you have enough Wiimotes. It's turned out to be a really fun party game too, we had no idea.


GC: I've played the first chapter of World of Goo (-> Preview). How many chapters are going to be included in the final version of the game? What can we expect of those chapters compared to the first one?

Kyle: There will be five chapters, taking the game through an entire year - Summer, Fall, Winter, a mysterious other time and place, and finally Spring. Each chapter introduces new species of Goo Balls, with different abilities, and different types of puzzles. And... everything changes in Chapter 4!


GC: Beyond the great art style, each level has got a fantastic music. I've played some levels uncountable times just to listen to the music. Who has made this music? And where can I get the soundtrack?

Kyle: Thanks, that's nice of you to say. I make the music with my computer. I'm not sure, but maybe after we release the game, I'll put together a separate soundtrack on our website or something.


GC: David Braben, Luc Bernard and even Satoru Iwata and Shigeru Miyamoto have talked about World of Goo. What do you think about that?

Ron: It's amazing.  I still can't believe that Iwata and Miyamoto know about our game!  Elite is one of my all time favorite games, so to have David Braben speak kindly of World of Goo also makes me very very happy.


GC: In the USA, World of Goo will be released as a WiiWare title, in Europe as a retail game. What was your reason for this decision?

Kyle: World of Goo was originally going to be a retail game everywhere. Then, when we heard about WiiWare, we thought we'd try a crazy experiment and go digital here in the US, just to see what it was like. In Europe, where a lot of people don't know who we are, we decided to keep the game in retail so people could discover us in stores.


GC: The WiiWare Version will be available for more than 1.000 Wii Points - the retail version will be sold for 39,99€ by RTL Games. With this money, you could buy nearly 4.000 Wii Points. Some of our readers are wondering, if this price is justified. What does the retail version contain, that the WiiWare version isn't containing?

Ron: The European version will have an extra chapter that takes place on the moon.  It will also have its own sandbox mode called "Center of the Moon", but I don't want to say too much about that in fear of spoiling the surprise.  To be honest, Kyle and I were not prepared for the flack we caught after the price difference was announced.  It's our first game and the reactions gamers would have to the price difference is simply something we failed to consider.  In the future we will likely either make just a Wii game or just a WiiWare game and not try to do both.  It will be easier for us and will make gamers happier too.


GC: As mentioned before, "RTL Games" is going to publish the European version. In which way does the publisher influence the development of the title?

Ron: Traditionally, publishers have their hand in the design and development of games, but in this case, much to our delight, RTL focused on what they do best (selling games) and we focused on what we do best (making games).

Kyle: They also are really fun to drink German beer with.


GC: I thought World of Goo is going to be my GotY 2008. But now we Europeans get this game not until 2009. Nintendo's lineup for this holiday season isn't really exciting, so, why do we Europeans get this game that late?

Ron: We really wanted to have the European version of the game available this year, but we won't be able to have the extra chapter ready in time to get the game approved, manufactured, and shipped this year.  We considered dropping the extra chapter and releasing in Europe at the same time but we feel it would be unfair to sell the same game for a much higher price.  Those who don't want to wait until the European release could buy the PC version online when it is released in North America.


GC: Could you please tell us something about the multiplayer? Are there going to be online leaderboards? 

Kyle: We have an optional online metagame strongly tied into the main game.  In each level, the balls you collect in the pipe are sent to a central persistent area, where you can build freeform structures up into the sky. The goal is to build as high as possible here. Your height and rank and other stats are stored on our server, so you can see other players building here, off in the distance, represented by little clouds with their height, rank, flag representing the player's country, etc. It's kind of like a living leaderboard, and it encourages you to optimize each level to get the maximum number of balls in the pipe, so you can build a higher tower here. I think right now, one of our beta testers from the Netherlands has the tallest tower in the world.


GC: If you have to choose the Wii or the PC version - which one would you prefer?

Ron: Both, of course! ;)


GC: Everything that I've seen from World of Goo looks amazing - regarding that your development team only consists of two people, when do you actually sleep ;)?

Ron: I close my right eye during the day and my left eye during the night, that way I can program 24 hours a day.

Kyle: I just abuse caffeine.


GC: As the maybe biggest fan of your company, what can I expect next? Are you going to hire some people to make more great games at the same time? Are you already looking forward to develop a sequel to World of Goo?

Ron: We have a long list of ideas we want to play around with, but the first thing we do after World of Goo is take a break, relax , and yes, sleep!

Kyle: Oh! There's also the Profanity Pack we need to release - an optional add-on that will turn all the Goo Balls' voices into muffled ambiguous cursing sailors.



GC: Any comment to our readers (maybe any secret to reveal ;-) )?

Kyle: There are some secrets! I'm curious if anyone will find them.


Thank you for answering the questions! I'm looking forward to play the game - it's the number one of my most wanted list!





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Simon   | Super Administrator | 15-09-2008 19:04:09
Wird ein ganz großer Titel im nächsten Jahr. EGM und & Co. werden Traumwertungen auspacken.
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