I’m pretty inspired right now to write while I’m in the air at 35,000 feet (probably above Utah). I spent a majority of the day flying (8 hours), for just two hours of business – fair trade, right? I went to Game Informer in Minnesota for a press tour. “What’s a press tour,” you ask? That’s just lingo the games industry uses to make it sound a lot more glamorous than it is. Anyway, I sat with a writer at Game Informer (now “GI” for the rest of this update) for two hours taking him through the highlights of the game. This is a very important thing for us to do, because these magazines and websites have to review the game. Since GI didn’t go to our latest press event in Dallas (at the HIAC PPV), they had seen about as much of the game as you all have. The only difference is that they have to review it…
So I took the GI writer through our game, and everything that’s new. We started with gameplay. From the change to our grapple system, to directional grapple throws, to our much talked about physics engine, this was all new to these guys and it was quite refreshing to see some genuine excitement for a bit.
While away, I followed my Twitter account on my Blackberry (I’m anti-iPhone until they go to Verizon). I found out that we revealed some of our legends in our game – and I knew which ones. I’m pretty stoked about Jake Roberts. He’s one of my favorite wrestlers of all time, and although he’s been in the SvR series before (by way of the PSP), in my book he’s a welcome addition. Funk? That’s an AWESOME one, and a personal favorite of game designer Jon Durr’s. My favorite for this year is yet to be announced, but that didn’t stop some from voicing their displeasure on my Twitter account. Newsflash guys, the roster will never make anyone happy. Every year, get ready for ups and downs with the roster because we can’t have everyone, and the process to get someone in is much more difficult than you think. Unfortunately, I’m not at liberty to discuss this in more detail, although I wish I could.
I just started reading “Countdown to Lockdown” by Mick Foley, beginning on the first leg of my trip to Minnesota. I must say, I’m about a quarter of the way through it, and I can’t quite figure out if I like it or not. Don’t get me wrong, Mick’s the man, but in my opinion, he seems rather long-winded in this one. I will say that it IS interesting getting his take on his current time with TNA.
There’s a lot of confusion out there, and I’m feeling very confused in my head as well. I really thought all of your questions would be answered this week, and I think the news that came out just made you guys as more. The good news is that you guys are getting so incredibly detailed in your questioning that it is certainly a good sign for us that you’re talking details instead of blatant distaste for high-level features.
Working in this industry is unlike anything else I think I’ll ever do in my life. I’m still trying to tell myself that 8 hours of flying for a 2 hour meeting, in the era of video conference no less, was a good use of my time. It’s no knock on the decision makers to do it, I don’t blame them – that’s how everyone does it. I just question whether it’s the best use of time (only at this very moment as I write this).
I’d like to send a shout out to “Tank” for getting married next week. (just wanted to throw that in there)
I know I’m rambling guys, just enjoying writing right now. I apologize for not being on any podcasts for a bit, it’s just that I’ve been extremely busy lately working on that game you all know will be coming out at this same time next year, but we can’t officially talk about it yet. We’re in pre-production right now going back and forth with Yuke’s. We finished our high-level creative briefs, and are now in the process of getting estimates on how much it will cost, and how long it will take from an engineering perspective to code.
As a designer, you can’t fall in love with your ideas. It’s great to be passionate about them, but don’t get attached because you’ll find out that your grand idea usually gets cut down to 25% of what you wanted in the first place. That’s the annual title biz, folks – it’s definitely something that challenges us to think in two ways (quality and cost). While I was at EA SPORTS, it was customary to adopt things from the other sports franchises for cost effectiveness reasons. At THQ, we are starting to get that luxury with UFC being developed.
Like I said on my Twitter account – I can’t talk about the “Axxess” stuff until probably Tuesday of next week. Very unfortunate that you guys are seeing the stuff on XBL and PSN, with no explanation yet, but I can’t risk getting in trouble, guys. Let me just say that you guys are over-analyzing it by 100 times over. It will make sense soon, I promise.
I’m really honored and blessed to be working on such a great franchise that knows where it wants to be, surrounded by passionate wrestling fans. Every single day, we’re looking at the dirt sheets, talking about every detail that’s happened – it’s like high school again.
I’m even more grateful for the fantastic support you guys, the community, has given us this year. I think you’re starting to believe that we know what we’re doing, and with your help – we’ll get to where we BOTH want to be. So THANKS!
Playing NBA 2K11 nonstop lately, and am very proud of my good buddy Mike Wang’s work (as well as the rest of the 2K team). What a fantastic basketball simulation.
Trust me, we’ve taken note. THAT is what “great” (not good) looks like.
Well, that’s it for now. Thanks for reading, everyone – I really do appreciate your interest in what I have to say. It’s not getting to my head, I can assure you. If anything, it’s adding pressure to write informative blogs for you guys. But your passion keeps me feeling challenged, both as a communicator and a designer.
I’m still in the air, but feeling a bit at ease since I got to write this.