Re: The Industry

A viewer on our youtube channel sent me an interesting question:

Hey guys, first off, I really appreciate the videos for the insight they give about professional game development.

I have been wondering however, how did you guys get into developing videogames?

Not necessarily into the industry (although I’d find that interesting as well, I just figure you are asked that every few hours) but what made you want to start to develop games?
What were the first games that inspired you? How did you start out? Did you even plan to become professional developers and would you recommend … Continue reading

Episode 13 is up!

Episode 13 of our Developer Commentary podcast series is up!

In this episode we visit the level that defined “Ratchet Gameplay” for years. Or at least, that’s the second half of this episode. In the first half of the episode we get to see a glider segment and some crap Mike designed.

You can check it out at http://podcast.uselessopinions.com or at our youtube channel or via the embedded videos below:

Continue reading

Project Bacon Level Design Prototyping, and other updates

I’ve been sick recently, and though that has sucked a LOT, it has given me time to work on project Bacon while I’ve been stuck at home (thank God for laptops so I can code in bed).

We’ve also put out more episodes of the podcast, we’re up to episode 10. Check it out at http://podcast.uselessopinions.com

Ok, so on to the bacon! I’ve made a ton of improvements, but let’s get the boring bits out of the way first — I’ve made a ton of optimizations to the code, so the whole thing runs a lot faster. I also … Continue reading

Updates

Man, June has been a crazy month. I got sick, started a podcast, went to E3, cleaned up a horrible virus that infected my server and took down all my websites, and generally have just been REALLY REALLY busy.

(Speaking of which, podcast episodes 5 and 6 are up! Check them out over at http://podcast.uselessopinions.com)

One thing I haven’t done yet in the month of June, though, is make any posts about Project Bacon!

That’s not because I haven’t worked on it, oh no. I’ve been working, but I did a big ol’ overhaul and it wasn’t looking great … Continue reading

Developer Commentary: RC2 – Episode 4

We’re working towards a Monday, Wednesday, (hopefully) Friday update schedule for the Developer Commentary podcast that Tony and I are doing for Ratchet and Clank 2.

In that spirit, today we have posted Episode 4, a shorter episode (~18 minutes) wherein Tony and I finish level 2 (a long level) including Arena fights and some Electrolyzer puzzles. You can check it out at all the usual places:

The podcast website:
http://podcast.uselessopinions.com/

Our Youtube Channel:
http://www.youtube.com/user/uselesspodcasts?feature=mhee

Or embedded below the fold:

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Podcast episode 3 is live

In this episode we go over the inspector bot segment of level 2 and talk about all the things I did wrong back then.

We also have fun on spherical worlds and in space combat.

Of course, we still make lots of jokes, so it’s not all serious and crazy.
Check it out on our podcast site: http://podcast.uselessopinions.com

You can also check it out directly on our youtube channel at: http://www.youtube.com/user/uselesspodcasts?feature=mhee#p/u

Or you could subscribe to our podcast feed in iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/useless-podcasts/id444076169
And, once again, for those who just can’t bear to leave … Continue reading

Podcast Episode 2 is up!

We go through the second level of Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando. By the time we recorded this we had settled into the task of podcasting enough that we could relax and talk more about development-centric stuff, which was pretty cool.

Of course, we still make lots of jokes, so it’s not all serious and crazy.

Check it out on our podcast site (once iTunes catches up — it lags a bit): http://podcast.uselessopinions.com, which now has a cool new look and feel.

You can also check it out directly on our youtube channel at: http://www.youtube.com/user/uselesspodcasts?feature=mhee#p/u

Or you could … Continue reading

New Podcast Series

My good friend and fellow developer Tony “Mr Sunshine” Garcia and I just began a series of “Developer Commentary” videos.

First up is Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando — our first game as REAL developers (we were testers on RC1).

So far we’ve put up one episode, which gets us to the end of the first level (Level 0).

You can see it:

ON YOUTUBE:
Part 1: http://youtu.be/lUwIYfykyss
Part 2: http://youtu.be/Wb4T7P57wAc

ON ITUNES (At some point):
http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/useless-podcasts/id444076169

ON OUR NEW PODCAST SITE:
http://podcast.uselessopinions.com

Or… if you’re really lazy, you can … Continue reading

E3 2011: Skylanders!

So far this is my favorite E3 hands-on preview:

http://www.gamefront.com/e3-2011-skylanders-hands-on-your-little-brothers-allowance-is-forfeit/”

And this is my favorite part:

Until today, the phrase “game with toy tie-in” would have sent me running in the other direction. Especially if a publisher as avaricious as Activision were involved. Having played Skylanders, however, its clear that they’ve come up with a product that would have thrown eight-year-old me into paroxysms of joy. Discussing the game’s potential with my colleagues, I decided that I learned a valuable lesson today: Things that appear evil aren’t always actually evil.

YAY! They got … Continue reading

Combat Prototype: A “failed” experiment in weapon design

I thought it might be interesting to show a work-in-progress experiment I was doing with the players’ weapons.

I’m working first on what I call the “indirect” weapon. The basic idea is that it’s not supposed to be about getting guys right in front of you, but rather you can use it in some unorthodox way to kill enemies that a straight-ahead gun type weapon just won’t do.

My first idea was to make something like a grenade. You shoot it out and it has a big area of effect explosion that damages everything inside it. The idea was it … Continue reading