Saturday, September 15, 2007

The cat's out...

Or rather, the cat has been out for a while - since E3 anyway. The game I have been working on has oficially been announced. Destroy All Humans!: Path of the Furon is a title that immediately excited me. You can find videos of the project at Gametrailers. Write ups and impressions are available at IGN, GameSpot, and 1Up.

There are many reasons why I find this franchise to be fun and compelling to work on. For one, humor is a large part of the game fiction. I've always felt that comedy is woefully underrepresented in games. I remember reading that the number one reason people go to see movies is to laugh. In games, the reasons people play them seem to be different and perhaps more diversified. There are inevitably exceptions. Playing board games or MMOs will generally lead to laughing more often than what you get in a typical single player adventure, but I chalk that up to the social nature of those genres. Through the entertaining exchanges between the main characters and the playful harpooning of pop culture throughout the ages in Destroy All Humans!, there are many moments that arouse a chuckle.

Another reason I was particularly drawn to this game is its stylish take on the open world genre. Grand Theft Auto opened many eyes about the wonderful possibility space games can achieve as a medium. Since then many titles have offered their own twist on the genre and, as is is to be expected, some have succeeded more than others. Destroy All Humans! is one of the franchises that I believe has staked a unique claim. While driving cars around town is fun, being able to control a UFO and run around the world with alien super powers is compelling for a lot of different reasons. There are many opportunities to harness the open ended nature of the game because of all the permutations of powers that are available to this franchise. Developing gameplay within this sandbox is a fulfilling journey as a developer.

Since I wasn't part of the team that originally birthed this series, I hope that our studio can exceed all expectations and that the hard work of crafting such a massive game pays off. We still have a ways to go, but in the meantime I will continue to pontificate on other areas of the game development world.

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