Way of the Warrior – The Lost Interview

A Twitter friend of mine dug up this ancient and forgotten interview that I gave from my Cambridge Mass apartment in 1994, during the development of our 3DO fighting game, Way of the Warrior. The original post can be found here, but he gave me permission to repost the whole thing here. It’s certainly one of my older interviews on record. I did a number in the 80s but those are pre-web and certainly long lost (unless I comb through my parent’s basement for old copies of EGM and the like!).

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Back in May I had a chance to interview Andy Gavin, one half of the team that makes up Naughty Dog Software. The other half consist of Jason Rubin who’s a graphic arts specialist. These guys are based in Cambridge, MA., where I happen to be from, and have created what may be the best fighting game for the 300. I played Way of the Warrior and it definitely blows the first Mortal Kombat away easily. The game is similar to Mortal Kombat in many ways. The digitized characters, fatalities, combos, blood galore, hidden characters, and special attacks are all here. What Way of the Warrior does is take if a step further with an amazing AI(Artificial Intelligence), characters that shrink and grow, over 50 attack moves for each character, 100% 3D scrolling, hidden weapons, interactive backgrounds, bonus items, and so much more. Let’s have a talk with Andy and see what he has to say about Way of the Warrior.

VGT: When did you first start programming video games?
Andy: About 1 0-12 years ago, the first game we made was Ski Crazed on the Apple II, which came out in 1986. It sold a couple thousand copies. Dream Zone was our next game that sold about 15000 copies. Keef the Thief, from Electronic Arts, did much better and sold about 50,000 copies on various machines. We then did Rings of Power, which was our only Genesis cartridge. It’s was very complex and sophisticated and took about 2 1/2 years to produce.
VGT: When was Naughty Dog founded?
Andy: Well , Naughty consists of mainly Jason Rubin and myself . Naughty got its names from a cartoon character that Jason drew. (Andy showed me a picture of an old Naughty Dog logo). Their new logo is on their flyers. The character was created about 8 years ago.
VGT: Is there any downside when programming on the 300 with their CO’s? Does access time and RAM space affect your games?
Andy: Well, first of all the 3DO has 3 megabytes, not mega bits of RAM, which is bigger then the largest SNES cartridge. The CD itself is 660 megabytes . There are technical issues that need to be addressed when programming on the 3DO. One has to use clever designs to reduce and eliminate load times. In Way of the Warrior the entire program was designed in what we call, Asynchronous. The loading is done while you play, by anticipating what needs to be loaded’ in advance with a hardware process called DMA (Direct Memory Access) . There ‘s a short pause going into a fight, but once the action has begun, there is no pause. Players can perform all their moves, with fatalities, 3D scrolling and the stereo music blaring, but with no load time.
VGT: So even though we’re playing continuously, there’s no slow down what’s so ever.
Andy: Yes, the 3DO is capable of loading stuff without any slow down. However, many previous CD games, including the 3DO, have had notable slow delays.

VGT: Like the Sega CD for instance?
Andy: Yes, this is due to sloppy, programming and not being aware of how to program on CD’s. It’s a difficult issue when writing programs that can actually play and load at the same time. It’s a technical challenge. With good program design the load time can be minimized. In turn, the quality of the sound effect, music, FMV, and game play surpass any cartridge game. Cartridge games only have a limited amount of memory in which you can program. CD’s only cost a dollar to manufacture, while cartridges can cost anywhere from 20-30 dollars. CD’s have enormously superior cost to storage ratio.
VGT: Can the access time for the Sega CD be reduced with technical design programming?
Andy: They can definitely reduce the access time. I don’t know that much about the Sega CD though. I don’t think their DMA is better than the 3DO. The 3DO has 4-5 times more memory. It also has a CD drive that’s twice as fast. It has decompression hardware that effectively doubles the speed. It has a unique and extremely powerful custom DMA architecture that can move graphics from disk to memory to screen and back without effecting game play.
VGT: What makes Way of the Warrior different from all the other fighting games?
Andy: As I mentioned before, I have an Artificial Intelligence Graduate degree from MIT. The computer players in WOTW are much more sophisticated then in other fighting games. Whereas they often resorted to patterns to beat the human players, there are no patterns programmed in for WOTW. It uses research grade AI that learns the best way to beat you. It’s extremely cunning and different and actually looks like a real player fighting by adapting to the situation and using all it’s moves.
VGT: Is it always learning consistently more and more each time you play it?
Andy: Yes.
VGT: What about the characters? What makes them so special.
Andy: The characters have around 50 normal moves and about 15-20 special moves. These moves reflect their styles and personalities. There are many secrets that use the background area and hidden characters can also be found.
VGT: So is each character equal in sense or are some stronger then others?
Andy: All the normal human characters are designed to be equal even though they’re different.
VGT: Well, I remember the first Street Fighter II game had very uneven characters. Some had a major advantage over others.
Andy: It’s tough to get the characters exactly even. We tried to get them as close as possible. People also developed different strategies for beaten the other characters. There are a lot of unique techniques and abilities for each character. Like Konotori, which means “stork” in Japanese, can flap and stay in the air longer. Major Gaines has special steroids’ implants that can change his size and therefore the amount of damage he receives become minimal. Nikki Chan is a Chinese Kung Fu artist who can do flips with special moves. She’s very fast and agile. Crimson Glory has close in grabs and special multi-missles that can be fired. Some character has special weapons. Nabu Naga has a sword and throwing stars. Shaky Jake has a staff.
VGT: There seems to be a little bit of everything from all the other fighting games in this game.
Andy: The other fighting games are very narrow. Most of them are to much alike. What we tried to do was take everything good from all the other fighting games and combine them all into WOTW. We’ve added unique features with better graphics, sounds, 3D backgrounds, special magic and potions, panning and zooming, background interaction, and larger more detailed characters.

VGT: Was the process of digitizing the characters the same as Mortal Kombat.
Andy: There are similarities. We’ve never seen them actually doing it. We have seen photos in magazines. They are actually a little more regimented then ours. Their fighting engine is much less sophisticated then WOFW. It requires that every characters moves line up to the exact same position. When each character does a high punch in Mortal Kombat, they high punch at the exact same point. So when they digitize their characters they have to line up perfectly. In WOTW, every character has its own information so not all characters need to have a high punch. Some of the characters punch high, some low, while others are tall, short, big and small. There’s no requirement that the character be the same size. We built the character the same way the actor would appear, rather then force them to convert to our pre-requirements.
VGT: With the 300 having such a small user base at this point, do you think it can increase sales and become successful?
Andy: We think it has a good chance. All game systems start off with a small user base. People forget the Genesis came out in August of 1989 and 2 years later when the Super Nintendo was released it only had 700,000 machines out there and only 23 games after the first year. 300 already has more then that. The 300 is the first of the 32/64bit machines and the difference is academic. Sony, Sega, and Nintendo have all announce 32/64bit systems that won’t be available until 1995. The 300 will be the only significant 32bit machine when Christmas comes. It will have a year of development by then and the price will probably drop some more. So I think it’s in good shape. We hope WOTW with help sell systems.
VGT: Are there any other projects being worked on for the 300?
Andy: We have 2 other projects we’re working on, but we can’t comment on them at this point.
VGT: Do you think that CD’s are the way to go for our future programmers?
Andy: I think this year is the year of the CD’s. It already has the PC market. It offers so many advantages in cost and amount of storage . The access time disadvantage can be overcome with well-designed machines and good programming techniques.

VGT: Are there any other types of games that Naughty Dog will be working on besides fighting?Andy: We signed a deal to put WOTW in the arcades.
VGT: If WOTW does come to the arcade, will it be different then the 3DO version.
Andy: It would be a bit different. The basis of it would be the same. There are different constraints for the arcade version. The 3DO is capable of producing arcade quality games.
VGT: What’s the most outstanding achievement you’ve seen in video games today? What games really blow your mind?
Andy: I have favorites over the years. I tried Ridge Racer which was very impressive looking, but had mediocre game play. In the PC world, “DOOM!” was very good looking. It shows us that 3D games are here and can be produced very well, even on PC’s.
VGT: Well, that’s about it for the questions. Thank you very much for taking the time to be interviewed by VGT. We all hope that Way of the Warrior is very successful and we look forward to reviewing it and any other games that are produced by Naughty Dog.
Andy: Your welcome. Thank you for choosing Naughty Dog as your first interview. We look forward to reading VGT when it’s released.

This is back to 2011 Andy. It’s so worth watching the totally hilarious video from our 1994 masterpiece (LOL). As you can see, we went for over the top.

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For what I’m up to now, click here.

Uncharted 3 Reviews Live

Reviews have started pouring in for Naughty Dog’s latest masterpiece, Uncharted 3. Given that this is the sequel to Uncharted 2, the multiple game of the year hit of 2009, one might’ve worried that there was nowhere to go but down. But not so for the unstoppable team at Naughty Dog. Check out the scores below pouring! IGN’s reviewer even goes so far as to call it his “new favorite game of all time!” Now, I can take no credit for any of the hard work the amazing team has put into the entire series, but I will stake a small claim to having brought the company up with an attitude of quality, quality, quality = consumer first = fun! Congratulations guys for keeping the torch burning brighter and brighter.

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Crash for Charity

PlayStation Museum has organized a charity auction of all four Naughty Dog Crash Bandicoot games, signed by yours truly and Jason Rubin. The auction link can be found here. All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society. Go bid!

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Crash Launch Commercials

In honor of the recent 15th Anniversary of my baby Crash Bandicoot, I present collected together the original suite of American TV Ads which premiered in September of 1996. It’s the suit that helped make the Bandicoot what he was.

Thanks to Playstation Museum for collecting and uploading these. You’re hurting my elbow!

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Crash Memories

In honor of Crash’s 15th Anniversary I wanted to make a post whose primary purpose is to serve as a repository for comments from you — the fans — about your first and favorite Crash Bandicoot impressions. Please make them in the comments. This is the place to tell that story of how you got your Playstation and Crash Bandicoot for Christmas when you were five, etc. etc. So to that effect, I’ll start it off with a brief tale that begins the night Crash Bandicoot launched.

In September 1996 all of Naughty Dog flew to New York for the combined Crash Bandicoot / Playstation 1 year anniversary party. It was on a big rooftop deck in the meat packing (hehe Beavis, you said meat packing) district. All of us got pretty drunk. There was a loud band. Very loud. Simultaneously, Ken Kutaragi (father of the Playstation!) decided to engage me in a highly technical discussion — against the 120 decibel background — using his rather broken English and my exactly zero command of Japanese. But in any case I didn’t sleep — we saw dawn in some New York greasy spoon.

About four hours later, Jason and I were on a plane to London. I didn’t sleep — why waste good reading time.

We arrived in London for ECTS and various Crash launch promotional meetings. We were immediately conducted to small hot smoky cubicles and interviewed by a variety of game journalists in numerous European languages for about eight hours — also against about 100 decibels of trade show. We then went to the bar (scotch). Then to dinner (wine). Then to a night club (more booze). Then a cigar bar (more scotch). Then to our hotel room (with about 15 or so European marketing and sales folk). There we consumed every single item in our minibar. We called down to the desk (4 in the morning) and had them bring us a NEW minibar. Yes, a complete refill of all items at 4 in the morning. We consumed that. Except for two miscellaneous tiny liquor bottles I can’t remember. The cost of just one minibar was 800 pounds sterling. We ate/drank two.

We didn’t sleep.

But we did spend another eight hours giving interviews. Then we went out again. That night I think we got 2-3 hours of sleep. But interviews again starting at 8am.

Somewhere in there I visited Westminster Abbey.

By day three we discovered that a number of our new friends (English) had never left the Island of Great Britain. So we all boarded the Chunnel and went to Paris (from Waterloo to Napoleon stations specifically, which is amusing). In Paris we started drinking at 10am. We kept drinking (many bars). We ate dinner (more wine). We went to someone’s apartment (more drinks). There was no sleep involved. After staying out all night (drinking) after the day of (drinking) we boarded the Chunnel back to London. I might have dozed. We went straight from there to the airport and got on a flight back to LAX.

Ah, first class. There were scones with clotted cream. And perhaps an hour or three of sleep. But we landed in LA at 7am. I was on the beach jogging by 8:30am. In the office at 10am. Back to work on the Japanese version of Crash. I went home early that day. Midnight.

Making video games builds stamina.

Don’t forget to put your own Crash memories in the comments section!

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So you want to be a video game programmer? – part 1 – Why

This post is a sequel of sorts to my How do I get a job designing video games. The good new is — if you’re a programmer — that nearly all video game companies are hiring programmers at all times. Demand is never satisfied. And the salaries are very very competitive.

The bad news is that it takes a hell of a lot of work to both be and become a great game programmer. Or maybe that isn’t such bad news, because you absolutely love programming, computers, and video games, right? If not, stop and do not goto 20.

I’m breaking this topic into a number of sub-posts. Although this is the intro, it was posted a day after the second, number 2, on types of game programmers, but I’m backing up and inserting this new number 1 (I’m a programmer, I know how to insert). Other posts will follow on topics like “how to get started” and “the interview.”

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So why would you want to be a video game programmer?

Let’s start with why you might want to be a programmer:

1. Sorcery. First and foremost, being a programmer is like being a wizard. I always wanted to be a wizard. Given that magic (as in the D&D variety) doesn’t seem to be real (damn!) programming is the next best thing. Computers are everywhere. They’re big, complex, and all sorts of cool everyday devices (like iPhones, set-top boxes, cars, and microwaves) are really basically computers — or at least the brains of them are. 99.9% of people have no idea how this technology works. As the late great Author C. Clarke said, “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Yay computers! If you actually know the arcane rituals, incantations, and spells to controls these dark powers then you are… drum roll please… a wizard.

2. Career security. Computers are the foundation of the 21st century economy. Nearly every new business is based on them. Knowing the above incantations is secret sauce. All the growth is in high tech (product possibility frontier and all that). Hiring is supply and demand too. The demand is for programmers and other high tech specialists.

3. Even more career security. Programming is hard. It requires a big New Cortex style brain. This means lots of people can’t do it. It takes years of study and practice. I’ve been programming for 30 years and there is still an infinite amount for me to learn. Awesome!

4. It’s a rush. Creating stuff is a rush. Making the infernal machine bend to your warlocky will is a huge thrill. It never gets boring and there is always more to learn (related to #3).

5. It pays really well. This is related to #2 and #3. People need programmers and they can’t get enough, so they have to pay competitively for them. Even in the late 90s early 00s at Naughty Dog it was very rare for us to start ANY programmer at less than $100,000, even ones right out of school. Good ones made a lot more. And if you’re a total kick-ass grand master wizard (nerd) like Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg you can even start your own company and make billions. Take that you muscle bound warriors!

6. Solo contributions. You like spending time with machines and find all day dealing with illogical humans at least partially tedious. Sorry to say it, but even though most professional programming is done in teams a lot of time is spent at the keyboard. For some of us, this ain’t a bad thing.

7. Socialization. You need an excuse to hang out with others. On the flip side, because of this team thing you’ll be forced to socialize on and off between coding. This socialization will have certain structural support. This is convenient for the would-be wizard, master of demons but terrifying forces, but afraid of starting conversations.

So why would you want to be a video game programmer specifically?

8. Video game programming is really hard. Probably the hardest of the hard. It combines cutting edge graphics, effects, the latest hardware, artistic constraints, tons of competition, very little memory, and all sorts of difficult goodies. The really serious wizards apply here.

9. Other types. Video game teams have artists, musicians, and designers on them too. Lots of tech jobs don’t (although they sometimes have those pesky marking folks). Artists etc are cool. They know how to draw or compose cool stuff which makes your code look and sound much cooler.

10. Consumer driven. If you make it to work on a professional game they often sell lots of copies and people will have heard of what you do. This is much much cooler than saying “I worked on the backend payment scheme of the Bank of America ATM.” It’s so cool that it might even get you laid — which is an important concern for bookish wizards of both genders.

11. It’s visual. Seeing your creations move about the screen and spatter into bloody bits is way more exciting than that green text on the bank ATM. Talented artists and sound designers will come to you with said bloody bits and all sorts of squishy sounds which will make your coding look 1000x more cool than it would by itself. If you aren’t into bloody bits than you can work on a game where enemies explode into little cartoon rings. It’s all cool.

12. It’s creative. For me, I have to create worlds and characters. I’ve been doing so my whole life. Right now I’m not even programming but I’m writing novels, which is also about creating. Programming in general is pretty creative, but game programming is probably the most so.

13. Love. You love video games so much that working on them 100+ hours a week seems like far less of a chore than any other job you can think of!

I’m sure there are more reasons, but the above seem pretty damn compelling.

CONTINUED HERE with Part 2: “The Specs”

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Parts of this series are: [Why, The Specs, Getting Started, School, Method]

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Old Crash 20 Questions

This is an old Crash Bandicoot 20 questions that used to be on Naughty Dog‘s site a long time ago. I’ve gotten a lot of messages looking for them, so I dug them up, but I haven’t done any editing except for trivial formatting. They are served up “as is.” Additionally, the links in here are ancient and might not work.

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1) Q: Are you all insane?
A:
Technically…yes.
2) Q: Help! I’m stuck in Crash! Can you give me some help?
A: No. But GameSpot
has a full walkthrough of Crash 2 online. Game Informer
Online also has good ones for Crash 1, 2, and Warped.
Or you can pony up a few more shekels and buy the
hint guides to Crash 1 and Crash 2 from Dimension
Publishing, or the strategy guides to Crash Bandicoot:
Warped and CTR (Crash Team Racing) from Prima. They
are the only ones with pictures of Crash on the cover.
Don’t be taken in by one of the unofficial hack jobs
out there, though. They all have errors. (ed.
note: Links to sites mentioned above were removed
because they are no longer active… sorry, that’s
the web for ya.)
3) Q: In Crash Bandicoot: Warped, what times are needed to earn each relic?
A:
  • “TOAD VILLAGE” sap 1:03:00 gold 0:57:53 plat 0:44:06
  • “UNDER PRESSURE” sap 1:46:00 gold 1:17:93 plat 1:10:50
  • “ORIENT EXPRESS” sap 0:41:00 gold 0:27:80 plat 0:18:10
  • “BONE YARD” sap 1:45:00 gold 1:40:21 plat 1:21:00
  • “MAKIN’ WAVES” sap 1:08:00 gold 0:58:23 plat 0:53:26
  • ——————-
  • “GEE WIZ” sap 1:35:00 gold 1:22:73 plat 1:05:93
  • “HANG’EM HIGH” sap 1:24:00 gold 0:52:66 plat 0:43:80
  • “HOG RIDE” sap 0:45:00 gold 0:41:46 plat 0:35:06
  • “TOMB TIME” sap 1:42:00 gold 1:10:00 plat 0:53:93
  • “MIDNIGHT RUN” sap 0:53:00 gold 0:38:23 plat 0:18:20
  • ——————–
  • “DINO MIGHT!” sap 1:34:00 gold 1:25:76 plat 1:03:00
  • “DEEP TROUBLE” sap 1:47:00 gold 1:25:16 plat 1:18:36
  • “HIGH TIME” sap 2:12:00 gold 1:04:12 plat 0:56:96
  • “ROAD CRASH” sap 1:25:00 gold 1:20:73 plat 1:17:10
  • “DOUBLE HEADER” sap 1:27:00 gold 1:21:16 plat 0:59:43
  • ——————–
  • “SPHYNXINATOR” sap 1:42:00 gold 1:22:66 plat 0:56:70
  • “BYE BYE BLIMPS” sap 1:09:00 gold 0:58:43 plat 0:51:50
  • “TELL NO TALES” sap 1:42:00 gold 1:25:66 plat 1:05:26
  • “FUTURE FRENZY” sap 2:01:00 gold 1:34:00 plat 1:19:66
  • “TOMB WADER” sap 2:44:00 gold 1:45:06 plat 1:24:00
  • ———————
  • “GONE TOMORROW” sap 2:05:00 gold 1:25:60 plat 1:02:13
  • “ORANGE ASPHALT” sap 1:36:00 gold 1:31:30 plat 1:21:80
  • “FLAMING PASSION” sap 1:43:00 gold 1:13:10 plat 0:59:40
  • “MAD BOMBERS” sap 2:08:00 gold 1:55:23 plat 1:38:16
  • “BUG LITE” sap 1:49:00 gold 1:34:86 plat 1:14:93
  • ———————-
  • “SKI CRAZED” sap 1:16:00 gold 0:50:50 plat 0:33:33
  • “AREA 51?” sap 1:53:00 gold 1:49:83 plat 1:44:50
  • “RINGS OF POWER” sap 1:20:00 gold 1:01:46 plat 0:51:76
  • “HOT COCO” sap 1:00:00 gold 0:30:10 plat 0:19:96
  • “EGGIPUS REX” sap 0:55:00 gold 0:50:03 plat 0:44:83
4) Q: (a) What is a Bandicoot?
(b) Why is Crash a Bandicoot?
(c) Why is he named “Crash?”
A:
(a) Crash is a Perameles gunnii, of the order POLYPROTODONTA,
family Peramelidae, commonly known as the Eastern Barred
Bandicoot. He is a marsupial, which means that he is born with a
built in fanny pack. They live in Tasmania, a small island south
of Australia, as well as on the Australian mainland. The
Parameles gunnii is, on average, 320mm from head to rump, and has
a 80mm tail. They weigh about 950g. Crash’s family, on the other
hand, tend to be about a meter tall, orange, walk on their hind
legs, and wear big shoes. They have, therefore, earned a good
living in the Parameles gunnii circus sideshow spinning real fast
and the like.
(b)Because both of his parents were.(c) Because that is the name his parents gave him.
5) Q: We want toys and stuff. When will we get them?
A: Where have you been? A toy company
named Resaurus recently released their second series of Crash Bandicoot
posable action figures! They made the Duke Nukem and Quake toys, so
you know they are good. Other stuff is in the works as well. Check
‘em out!
6) Q: (a) Why did you choose to make Crash Bandicoot for the
PlayStation?
(b) Are there plans to port any of the Crash games, or make original Crash games for other systems?
A:
(a) Picking a game system, or “platform”, at the beginning of a
project is like picking horses before a horse race. It is more
of an art than a science. When we began Crash 1, the only 32 bit
systems available were the 3DO and the Atari Jagauar. There were
rumors about the coming PlayStation game console and the Sega
Saturn, and distant rumblings about the N64. It was easy to toss
the 3DO and Jaguar, neither had the power. And the fact that the
N64 wasn’t going to have a CD ROM drive made it ineligible. In
the end, we chose the PlayStation game console because it had the
best mix of power and storage. Based on its worldwide sales,
game players have picked the PlayStaton game console as well.
Looks like we picked the winning horse!
(b) Until recently, PlayStation has been the only system capable of
handling the sophisticated graphics and gameplay of the Crash Bandicoot
games. The Saturn doesn’t have the power. N64 cartridges cannot hold
the data. Also, Crash likes the PlayStation. Naughty Dog has no idea what
Crash’s future holds. We do not control his destiny. You’ll have to ask him.CTR (Crash Team Racing) is our last game working with Crash (and our last title
for the first generation PlayStation). Naughty Dog’s future lies with
completely new characters on PlayStation 2.

7) Q: What are Naughty Dog’s favorite games?
A:
We wish the following games had never come out. They have
killed our productivity:
Goldeneye(N64)Gran Turismo(PlayStation)Command & Conquer (PlayStation & PC)

Tekken 3 (PlayStation)

Mario Kart 64 (N64)

Spyro (PlayStation)

Point Blank (PlayStation)

Beatmania (PlayStation)

Metal Gear Solid (PlayStation)

Banjo & Kazooie (N64)

8 ) Q: What other developers do you respect?
A: We don’t sleep well because we know
that Rare, Miyamoto san, the Gran Turismo team, and the Gex 2 team
are out there. So we’ve hired the lead programmer and lead designers
from the Gex 2 team (Dan
Arey
, Daniel
Chan
, Evan Wells.)
They don’t frighten us anymore. Miyamoto
san
, on the other hand, keeps turning our offers down!
9) Q: Does Dr. Neo Cortex use Rogaine?
A:
Yes, but only on the sides of his head.
10) Q: (a) What is it like to work at Naughty Dog?
(b) Are you hiring?
(c) What is it like to work with Sony?
A:
(a)We don’t know. Nobody here considers what we do to be work.
(b) Check
our job opportunities page
.(c) We don’t know. The people we interact with at Sony are
so good that we don’t have to work at it. Seriously, we just
make the game, they take care of the rest.
11) Q: Naughty Dog created the first software z-buffer for the PlayStation. How did you do it?
A:
Greg coded it. We don’t know how it works. It just does.
12) Q: Where do the Naughty Dog artists come up with their ideas?
A: The Naughty Dog artists are so used
to Crash’s world now that it doesn’t seem like designing, so much
as just making 3D models of a world that already exists. Still, there
is a lot of exploration on paper, as well as on the computer before
the final locations and characters exist. Take a look in our Art
Gallery
for some samples.
13) Q: (a) How many polygons is Crash?
(b) How many frames of animation does he have?
(c) How do you animate him?
A:
(a)532 triangles.
(b) In Crash 2, Crash had over 9000 individual
frames of animation @ 30 frames per second. In Warped,
Crash had around 30,000 frames! We believe this to
be more than any other console game character. If
we are wrong, e-mail usand we will change this answer.(c) We attach motion capture equipment to Crash and ask
him to do the moves we need for the game.
14) Q: What is your favorite food?
A:
The artists like sushi and Chinese, as well as Mexican. The
programmers are on the “flat diet”. We lock them in their room
until they finish a project and only give them whatever food fits
under the door. Pizza – yes. Pancakes – Yes. Hamburgers – Yes,
one layer at a time. Chicken – Yes, but it tastes horrible after
all of the shoving. They are very thristy.
15) Q: Crash doesn’t have any graphic violence. Are you against graphic violence?
A:
No, and if you ask us that question another #$@! time we’ll kick
your @#X* and rip your !@% off! Crash doesn’t need violence.
It’s that simple.
16) Q: How do I become a video game programmer?
A: All of the Naughty Dog programmers
started programming when they were very young. They all had computers
at home, and they would all spend a good deal of time in the basement
doing what was called “hacking”. Some of them took computer-related
courses in High School, but at that time you didn’t need to know that
much about computers to teach the computer lab teacher a thing or
three. Andy got
a post graduate degree in Artificial Intelligence, but one of the
biggest arguments in Artificial Intelligence is whether or not it
even exists. All the Naughty Dog programmers work very hard, keep
long hours, and have the ability to say things that make you confused.
17) Q: What percentage of the PlayStation’s power are you using for each Crash game?
A:
All of it. 110 volts. Exactly what is in your wall socket. But
there is a lot more that we can do with the 110 volts in the
future. Look for the next PlayStation games we work on to look
better and better.
18) Q: Is Crash related to the Tasmanian Devil?
A:
The Tasmanian Devil refuses to do blood tests, so we may never
know.
19) Q: What kind of shoes does Crash Bandicoot wear?
A: Big red ones. Though
if Nike would like to sponsor Crash and start a line
of shoes like “Air Jordans” called “Spin Crashes,”
we are open to offers.
20) Q: Are there only twenty questions?
A:
Yes, so far.
21) Q: I thought there were only 20 questions. Why is there a 21?
A:
Because Naughty Dog is firmly AGAINST antidisestablishmentarianism.
Go look it up.
_

The index of all Crash posts is here.

The Making Crash series: [12345678910, 11, 12]

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