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Sunset Overdrive Discussion

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Sunset Overdrive Discussion

Post by TripOpt55 on Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:12 pm



Insomniac did a Q&A about this game today and I snatched these notes from TheOddOne over at NeoGAF.

Elevator pitch: Sunset Overdrive takes place in the future, it is an open world game and is third person. It has got a lot of combat and traversal elements. It’s going to be very stylized game, so a lot of color and pop. An open world game with a lot of combat and agile traversal, in a nutshell.

Updating and player feedback:


  • Insomniac want to take the game further by constantly updating the game after release. They want to do this by involving the players in a two way conversation between developer and the player. That will help them understand what excites the player, so they can respond with stuff that fits well in the game and satisfies the players needs for change.

  • They are focused on keeping the game updated and of course fixing what needs to be fixed. They want to keep it fresh so people keep coming back and hanging out in Sunset City [where the game takes place]. So a persistent living world.

  • They want to take the persistent living world aspect a little further. This upcoming next generation gives an indication that people are more and more connected with each other, and want to have more communication with developers making the game. They looked at the new tech coming down the road and see that it gives them that chance to take those steps.

  • This generation has practically restrained them from making frequent updates to their games and having a direct conversation with the player. This is because when releasing content on a console you have to jump through a lot of hoops to get it out there. It is very difficult and impossible to respond immediately to what going on in the game. 

  • Microsoft has been supportive in pulling out their restrictions and hurdles to make it more streamlined for Insomniac to update the game. Insomniac have been doing a lot of infrastructure work so they can keep changing the game after release without having to do massive horrible patches.

  • Insomniac had to rethink their position as traditional console developer and had to build systems that can make them more agile, in terms of what they deliver and make.

  • They plan on having a aggressive updating schedule and looking at what players are and are not doing in the game. If players like a certain thing, they will of course start making more of it.

  • There are mechanisms in the game which give the developers feedback. They are still figuring out the technology hurdles. They might look how Kinect can help give feedback, like giving direct audio feedback. They are still experimenting, so nothing is final. The core game will be played with the controller.

  • Too early to say if there might be a beta.

On the game itself:


  • The point of the Sunset Overdrive world is to be irreverent and fun, so breaking the fourth wall is totally fine by Insomniac. They say that it’s the DNA of the studio and with this game it’s a good chance to let loose with style and tone.

  • The game reflects a lot of Drew Murray (Co- Creative Director) and Marcus Smith ( Co-Creative Director) style. Drew was told by somebody describing Sunset Overdrive as ‘a grown up version of a traditional Insomniac game ’. Marcus came to work for the company because he loved Spyro and Drew came because he loved Rachet. They have been working on the Resistance series for 7- 8 years, which they found awesome to work on, but they are excited to explore the grownup version of Metropolis. Drew feels like it’s reflected in the reveal trailer.

  • Overdrive is an adult game, it’s going to have violence and action, but the world will be colorful and fun to move around in. Seeing as they have been working 7 to 8 years of Resistance, they were done with the grey look and their first rule for this new game was ‘no rubble’.

  • The city, Sunset City, shown in the trailer is pitched as modern, a little futuristic and a little bit exaggerated. They are pushing the idea of a hyper consumer culture.

  • They are planning on letting the player do a certain amount of customization. There will be the option to chose between male and female characters. They are thinking of a couple of archetypes which you can pick from body wise. They are still trying to figure out how customizable the outfits will be, but they hope they are very customizable.

  • They looked at what worked traversal wise in their older games. For Overdrive they want a free roaming city where you can go anywhere and traverse. The player will get all kind of powers and abilities that will allow them to move around well. They want to keep the mechanics very skill based and feels more in line like something like Rachet. It is not something like Assassins Creed and Uncharted, which look really great but tend to be ‘push a button and push into that direction’. For Overdrive you have use timing to use the traversal moves. There will be some momentum based gameplay, where the better you do the more powerful you get.

  • The reveal trailer has inspired some new ideas for the game. Before they had separated shooting and traversal, but now have a couple of prototypes going where they combining those two elements. There are other elements too, but they could not talk about it for now.

  • Cover is not something they want the player to hinge on, they want they player to use the traversal as a defense and also use it offensively to get to a better position. Getting those elements to mesh was difficult, but they are getting at a point where it feels awesome.

  • Drew sees Overdrive as a throwback to fun arcade-y action games. They have narrative and a fiction, but they are not so concerned about it. One of their internal pillars for the game is ‘fun triumphs realism’. This means that everything goes and so they can surprise players.

  • They will be depending less on the cloud compared to other games coming out. Most of Overdrive cloud capabilities will focus on updating the game and interacting with the player.

  • Sunset Overdrive is not a launch game and there will be singleplayer.

  • There will different types of mutant enemies. The trailer only shows one type.

  • The art of the game is inspired by urban art, vinyl figures, flyer art and anime (Tekkonkinkreet!).

Tidbits:


  • The headshot and Scott Pilgrim-esq text effects show in the trailer will show up in the game. They really like it and say it’s a fun way to give the player feedback on what’s going on in the game.

  • ‘Iggy’ was the internal name for the game.

  • They have no name yet for the Vinyl gun seen in the trailer, it shoots 12inch LP’s. Drew points out that Insomniac is known for their wild and exotic weapon designs, and that will be a big feature of Overdrive.

  • Marcus came up with the name ‘Sunset Overdrive’.

Working with Microsoft:


  • The DRM changes posted by Microsoft yesterday will not have a dramatic effect on what they are doing with the game. Speaks for itself, but you need to be connected to get the updates. Drew does feel that they responded well to the Xbox fans regarding the DRM issue.

  • Working with Microsoft has influenced their game design and how they will interact the with the player. They are an independent company, work with multiple publishers and release their game on different platforms. Microsoft was the right partner for Overdrive. They are excited about XboxOne in terms of the tech that it is offering. Microsoft has been getting Overdrive out there, it was a great way to have their first exposure at E3. Microsoft is engaged as partner and believes in the vision that Insomniac has for the game.

  • Upfront they hit a lot of concerns like the stylization in particular. They really wanted to make a stylizated game and saw that a lot of publishers get cold with that kind of thing. Insomniac stayed with that vision and Microsoft gave a big thumbs up. Insomniac owns the IP and is glad that Microsoft supports that.
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Re: Sunset Overdrive Discussion

Post by TripOpt55 on Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:14 pm

Sounds cool. Thought this bit was particularly noteworthy:

They looked at what worked traversal wise in their older games. For Overdrive they want a free roaming city where you can go anywhere and traverse. The player will get all kind of powers and abilities that will allow them to move around well. They want to keep the mechanics very skill based and feels more in line like something like Rachet. It is not something like Assassins Creed and Uncharted, which look really great but tend to be ‘push a button and push into that direction’. For Overdrive you have use timing to use the traversal moves. There will be some momentum based gameplay, where the better you do the more powerful you get.
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Re: Sunset Overdrive Discussion

Post by volvocrusher on Thu Jun 20, 2013 11:22 pm

This is one of the reasons I now want an Xbox One. Hope this is a nice return to form for them.

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