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Episode 3: Codename: Reds

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Episode 3: Codename: Reds

Greetings, backers! It is time for updating.

As we near the end of pre-production of the game, the team has begun to take shape. And because Double Fine works on multiple projects simultaneously, putting a new team together actually means recruiting from within the company itself. This episode of the documentary will introduce you to that process and to some of the key team members.

Also: people get drunk in an attempt to codename the game.

Enjoy the latest fruits of 2 Player Productions’ labor:

[vimeo]44807198[/vimeo]

And the team is still coming together! Double Fine animator Ray Crook and all-star concept artists Scott Campbell and Peter Chan have also joined the project. Ray, Scott, and Peter have all been working with Double Fine since the early days of Psychonauts. Peter even worked with Tim and Ron on Monkey Island 2 back in the LucasArts days.

BACKER LOCATION IDEAS

Tim recently solicited location ideas from the backer community. That thread turned out to be great fodder for our concept artists Lee Petty, Scott C., Peter Chan, and Nathan "Bagel" Stapley! We picked out of some of their work inspired by backers Mancomb (a haunted lighthouse on the moon); SethB, MarlinClock, Space_man, and Ammypendent (an origami world); muka3d (a forest or jungle lit up by countless fireflies); and Epphra (a starry sky over bioluminescent grass). Head over here to see it.

REWARDS UPDATE

Fangamer has begun shipping out t-shirts and posters to backers who pledged at physical reward tiers. It's going to take them several more weeks to work through the full list, so don't worry if your stuff hasn't gone out yet! You'll know it's shipped when you get a Fangamer email with tracking information.

Here's a demonstration of the sheer scale of Fangamer's task: a video of their crew receiving nearly four tons of cardboard shipping tubes.

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SLACKER BACKERS

If you have friends who want to get in on the game updates and documentary, point them over to our Slacker Backer form. Last time we sent out an update, our site went down, so hopefully it'll be safe to send them our way this time. Everyone should have a chance at adventure!

EPISODE NOTES

00:04 - This is called foreshadowing.

03:06 - The five months of production Tim and Greg are talking about only represent the pre-alpha phase.

03:15 - A business manager was recently hired at the office to take some of the pressure off Tim.

04:15 - Brandon at age 9.

04:50 - Audio is fuzzy here because Tim was wearing a wireless mic that was broadcasting to a receiver at the other end of the studio.

05:25 - Brandon’s demo area is a representation of the front of the Double Fine building.

07:20 - You can read about Oliver’s Redbot Adventure here.

07:45 - Historic reasons.

07:51 - Oliver at age 8.

08:33 - Monkey Island Special Edition.

08:42 - The

.

09:10 - These are not lines for the Double Fine Adventure.

09:40 - Anna at age 11. This picture was taken on her birthday.

10:18 - “This is a test.”

11:15 - Early poster prototypes. We went through a few revisions to get the color and paper stock just right.

11:27 - Accolade had some rough times in the 90s. it’s no wonder Lee had a hard time getting a project off the ground.

12:38 - “Stand-up” meetings take place every work day at 11am. The team stands in a circle and talks about what they did the previous day, what they plan to do that day, and if they are “blocked” by anything. The meetings are held standing up to encourage brevity.

13:30 - Bagel lives in NYC and has to Skype in for all his meetings, including the daily stand-ups.

15:05 - More info on the pre-vis can be found in Lee’s forum post.

16:16 - The increase in community members post-Kickstarter led to the hiring of Chris Remo.

20:25 - The cake is not a lie.

22:26 - Double Fine’s Paul Du Bois also came along on the bar crawl for moral support. Paul helped with much of the backend management for the Kickstarter and has been with the studio since the days of Psychonauts.

Google Map of the bar crawl.

24:06 - The team is seen here playing Liar’s Dice at Li Po.

24:34 - “We Are the Champions” is the song Tim sang on the company’s intercom to let everybody know that--after slowly running out of cash due to the cancellation of Psychonauts--money had arrived from Majesco, and the company was not going out of business.

24:53 - Vesuvio is not really in Chinatown, but it’s very close.

25:08 - This scene was shot in the bar Specs', also the codename for Double Fine’s prototype Kinect title Tim gave a presentation about at NYU.

25:34 - Not pictured is Mr. Bing’s, also a codename for a cancelled project that’s still secret because it might happen some day.

Some Double Fine games don’t have code names--it’s up to the individual project leader.

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Sorry about the wait everybody. Hope you all enjoy the episode! We'll be here to answer any questions that may come up.

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Yay! I love how the prodjex Reds is progressing!

But please, guys, don't mix different types of alcohol... :ohh:

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I decided to check the forum literally seconds after this thread went up. There was one view of the thread when I clicked on it. Crazy.

Great episode, nice to be able to get to know the individual team members, and it's really cool to find out where the code names came from. Hopefully Project Grasslands will still get its chance someday. ;)

Some of the things in the video make it clear just how far behind this particular episode is, but I guess that's what delays do.

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Very good episode. Thanks for this! Interesting to hear and see the REDS team. Also awesome way to choose project names :D

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Amazing as always! Thank you for this beautiful insight into the gaming industry. :)

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Great episode, way better than the last one! How many people are working on the game in total?

Oh, and it's great to get some insider information about the game... Remember, you don't have to sell it to us, so keep those little concept ideas coming, even if they don't end up in the game.

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This whole documentary should be mandatory material for anyone looking to get into the game industry. Sure, every studio is different, but things like internal team recruiting, having to think about launch event budgets, tools, codenames... a lot of that you barely hear about until you're in the thick of it.

Fantastic work, guys.

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I just love these documentary segments. I didn't think they would be interesting at all, but it turns out I actually find the business processes intensely fascinating.

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Great episode, and that Eight Tired Fangamers was totally tubular . . . budum-chi.

Always a little bit sad at the end of an episode, it's like having to wait a month between your favourite TV program episodes.

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16:48 Is that a copy of Conker's Bad Fur day in an N64 there? Thats pretty badass if it is.

Yes it is.

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Chris, you are as big as me! Mighty Chris! Smiter of Forum Trolls! Lecturer (is that a word... well now it it is) of ppl who point stuff out too fast and Doubter of Tim!

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Chris, you are as big as me! Mighty Chris! Smiter of Forum Trolls! Lecturer (is that a word... well now it it is) of ppl who point stuff out too fast and Doubter of Tim!

I was also filmed standing next to Greg, who is (I'm like 96% sure about this) the Largest Person in the World, exaggerating the effect even further!

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So the more games are made the more drunk you get :)

As for the earlier part, it seems the camera is significantly changing people's behavior. Meaning, they say "we are going to do that, and then this, and after that we'll do that". This happened both in the meeting about budget and also the team's meeting. I realize there are things you don't want outsiders to know and there are other things you don't want to spoil, but I tend to think that the result would have been different if the documentary were not released per episode but rather after the game release. I'm not sure that using 'this' and 'that' sounds so natural.

Are the ideas really that secret? I mean, if we were to see some of them would the game lose its edge and not surprise us? (or maybe you are protecting the sanity of the people here who would view it and would have to institutionalize themselves, I mean, at least those of us who aren't already). I think it will become increasingly difficult to provide the documentary without spilling some game details or providing some preliminary ideas. Maybe it's worth going through the ideas and seeing what can be articulated beyond what was already told, rather than giving out partial information that doesn't really tell anything (such as birthday cake). Maybe this doesn't exist and I'm just rambling words, I'm not really in a position to tell anything about the truth (maybe you'll tell me "you can't handle the truth")

In case every idea is a major spoiler, are we to expect "the spoiler cut" after the release?

Another thing, it's also nice to see some of the things discussed here live. It would be interesting to see the interaction we are having on your end.

Besides these random thoughts, thanks for the episode, it's great.

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Best. Episode. Ever. (so far)

It is great to finally get to see more faces. And those bars ... it harkens back to my SF times, long ago.

Jolly good job 2PP!

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I love these documentary episodes, they are so great. The only downside to them is the wait until the next episode! Ha.

Great work as always. I can barely wait to have them all, so I can watch them all through a couple of times like an epic film

Fun pills and sleds for 2PP, DFA, and Reds.

Smiles

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It's nice to see you talking about budgets and stuff, that kind of thing always seems to be Taboo whenever they talk about the making of the games.

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Reds... I like it! Also: hats off to 2 player productions - that was a slick looking piece of cinematica.

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Hmm... Silly question inbound:

How much budget does finding the name for the project take ;)?

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