Tuesday, February 12

By Force or Design, Cont.

IGN recently interviewed Burnout Paradise Lead Designer Craig Sullivan. One question was specifically relevent to the latest post here at Invisible Studio so I decided to post it.

IGN: There was a lot of talk about the game's open world design and lack of an instant retry option. While we missed it at first, it did encourage us to approach the game differently and helped to make the play experience unique to the title. But given that there are certainly gamers who would have appreciated to see it in there, do you still think its exclusion was still the right thing to do?

Sullivan: Exploration and discovery is a core part of the experience and we designed everything around that. An open world game gives designers a real challenge when compared to level based games – when the player can go anywhere and do anything, how do you deal with issues such as navigation, retry and so on. We decided to tackle this challenge head on, rather than do what other open world games have done to date which is to resort to conventions from level based games such as chevrons, arrows and retry options.

We wanted players to learn the city as fast as possible, because we wanted to get rid of outdated concepts like chevrons and big arrows on the screen. If you teleport around the world all the time, you never get to learn it like you do a real place. If you just follow an arrow everywhere, you do not get to recognize a certain road or a certain turn. Also, we wanted to put distraction gameplay in the game and encourage people to do a real variety of events. This is the reason you have to hunt, pursue and takedown cars to earn them. You have to learn this city, get a feel for it, before you take on other people in races. If there was one way we would suggest people play to enjoy the game more it would be to just explore and not get hung up on finishing the game as fast as possible, by doing event after event.

We spent a long time on this challenge and what we have done absolutely breaks convention – which puts us out there in the firing line. Some will love it, but for them to love it others must loath it. That's the beauty of entertainment.


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