Join host Todd Mitchell as he speaks with notable game industry professionals, upcoming indies, and noteworthy authors on a variety of topics including news, philosophy, career advice, and more.
Max Pears of CD PROJEKT RED
Cyberpunk 2077 designer Max Pears calls in to discuss his recent book, Let's Design: Combat, his podcast, Level Design Lobby, and his meteoric rise in game design, from school to Ubisoft's The Division to CD PROJEKT RED's most hotly anticipated title to date.
Let's Design: Combat is fresh off the presses, offering rare access to design wisdom straight from a designer assigned to (probably) gaming's most anticipated project. We discuss what you can expect to find in the book, Max's inspiration for tackling the project, and where he hopes to take the series from here.
When Max isn't blocking out levels for triple-A blockbusters, he hosts the Level Design Lobby podcast, featuring informative design segments, recommendations for other great resources, and interviews with other industry experts.
While we're not able to do the in-depth discussion on Cyberpunk that we'd love to do (yet), this episode offers a fascinating glimpse into Max's world, including the traveling he's done to work in the industry, how he landed at CDPR, and resources/events he recommends for learning designers.
* Let's Design: Combat (physical) (ebook)* The Level Design Lobby podcast (Spotify) (YouTube) * Contact (Twitter) (Email)
Fandom Unlimited Appearance and Courtroom Drama
Todd appeared on Fandom Unlimited's live Facebook stream to talk about Epic and Microsoft vs. Apple and Google, then we dive into an equally troubling lawsuit between a studio and publisher that you might not have heard about.
Epic (with Microsoft) vs. Apple (and seperately) Google
* Microsoft xCloud - Announced at E3 2018. A service that will let you play Xbox games from a certain library they maintain and you can stream them to a bunch of devices and play them with an xbox controller. Laptops, phones, tablets, you name it. Launches September 15th and will be included with Game Pass Ultimate for $15 per month - includes Live, Game Pass, and xCloud, making it a great deal
* Microsoft announced xCloud at E3 2018 and suggested you'll be able to play on many devices, including smartphones * Apple came out and clarified xCloud will not be approved for iOS * After Fortnite attracted many mobile players, Tim Sweeney insisted on a special deal with Apple * Apple flatly rejected Epic * Epic put out an update on mobile platforms, Android and iOS, that optionally circumvents app store microtransactions and just takes money directly from players * Both platforms kick Fortnite out of the store * Epic filed simultaneous lawsuits against Apple and Google * Apple advised Epic it was cancelling all licensing agreements, including Mac and iOS support in the Unreal engine* Motions are being filed back and forth, the judge is already treating these motions in a way that seems to favor Apple * This week, Microsoft entered a court filing on behalf of Epic
Frogwares vs. Nacon
* Frogwares - Ukranian game studio with offices in Dublin, Ireland. They created the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes series, which are really cool games.* Nacon, Formerly BigBen - French game publisher established in 1981. Their main markets are France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands.
This all comes from a statement from Frogwares, released on Twitter. They say this is all made public in a filed lawsuit so they’re allowed to discuss it. This is strictly Frogware’s side of the story.
* Frogwares announced that The Sinking City, which is not a Sherlock Holmes game, but something else they’ve been working on, has been taken down from Steam and most other stores* They say this is because they were forced to terminate the agreement with their publisher due to breaches of the agreement* They say they signed with Nacon, the publisher, in 2017. The deal was Frogwares would develop the game, Nacon would contribute financially, then Nacon would have the right to sell the game* Frogwares says that during production, Nacon fell hundreds and hundreds of days behind in payments* Frogwares says that Nacon at some point bought a competing studio working on a similar game and ordered Frogwares to turn over their source code to the other studio* Frogwares says Nacon wouldn’t provide consistent figures about sales forecasts and other business plan items* Frogwares says that once the game was released and made available in game stores, Nacon sent a letter saying that previously approved milestones are being cancelled* Frogwares filed a lawsuit against Nacon in August 2019* Frogwares says Nacon is creating a perception that it was not Frogwares who owns the IP. * They say their logo was removed from some game covers. * Frogwares says dozens of Sherlock Holmes and Sinking City domains were bought by Nacon and a tabletop Sinking City RPG was created* Nacon went public and suggested that they owned The Sinking City intellectual property outright* When Frogwares finally notified Nacon that they wer...
Well we did it. 100 episodes of GameDev Breakdown.
For the big event, we rolled the webcams and just let it happen. Matt Hill joined in for a discussion about recent events, a trip down memory lane, and a quick look at what's to come.
This podcast wouldn't be worth doing without our friends listening all over the world. Your emails, tweets, and reviews don't only make it worthwhile, they make it fun. Thank you for being a part of this community--this is why we continue to do it.
Check out the video show right here!
What do you think? More video shows? Subscribe to the channel just in case!
Thanks to Matt for joining in the fun. Check out his streams at Twitch and keep up with the latest happenings on our server over at Discord. We'll be back with #101 next week.
Shammi Mohamed, formerly of Microsoft and Turn 10
If you're into any technology from the earliest days of PC gaming to modern 3D engine development (with a dash of pilot certification in the middle), Shammi Mohamed is a great person to get to know.
In this episode of GameDev Breakdown, Shammi calls in to tell us how he climbed the tech ladder, starting with his early childhood in India tinkering with the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, leading to his current work in interactive entertainment engineering. Along the way, he's contributed to a load of games we all know and love while at Microsoft and Turn 10, including:
* The Forza Motorsport series* Halo 4* Several Kinect titles and foundational technology* NFL Fever 2004* NHL Rivals
If that's not enough, Shammi spent time as an indie creating his own game engine and releasing Moto Wheelie, an indie title routinely found on the Apple TV ranking charts.
Topics in this show include:
* Working on cutting-edge entertainment technology* Process and culture in game development at Microsoft and Turn 10* The balance between science and art in interactive entertainment* What it means to be on a truly agile team* Changes in game development over the last 20 years
* Shammi at Twitter* MotoWheelie.com* injiti.com
Banks Boutté and Maxx Burman of KitBash3D
KitBash3D has developed a reputation for world-class 3D assets used by some of the biggest studio and artist names in TV, Film, and triple-A games. Today, the company announced efforts to reach the rest of the game development space.
In this episode of GameDev Breakdown, co-founders Banks and Maxx call in to discuss today's release of a variety of "game engine ready" asset libraries intended to make development life easier while increasing visual quality in 3D games. If you move quickly, you can download one of their asset kits for free to see if it fits your workflow.
* The challenges of repurposing asset libraries for in-engine use* The increasing value of world-building skills to emerging tech * The KitBash3D community, including its famed livestreams * BIG NEWS ABOUT SLEEP TIGHT?!?* Building creative muscles by using new approaches to creation
* KitBash3D.com* KitBash3D on Twitter* KitBash3D on Twitch
Your Calls and Clips
We put out the call for topics, questions, and feedback on our new account at Swell, and you answered!
Topics this time include:
* Our viral retelling of adventure at the last Aladdin's Castle arcade* Coaching and tutoring in esports* The legend of Atari VP Howie Rubin* An upcoming chat with Shammi Mohamed of Microsoft first-party games and now Tesla?!* Jonathan Rando heard we were talking smack
Thanks as always for your calls and clips. Keep them coming!