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Inside the Developers Studio: Brian Allgeier

Brian Allgeier's Avatar + Posted by Brian Allgeier on Jul 02, 2007 // Creative Director, Insomniac Games

Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction

1. What game do you have at E3 this year?
RATCHET AND CLANK FUTURE: TOOLS OF DESTRUCTION

2. Describe it in five words or less.
A Spectacularific Galactic Sci-Fi Adventure!

3.When is it being released?
[Channeling best “movie guy” voice] … Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction will be available worldwide and exclusively on PlayStation 3 this fall.

4. Tell us more about your game. What’s the story?
Ratchet and Clank are joyriding in their favorite city, Metropolis, when an imperial armada suddenly attacks. They discover that the invasion was orchestrated by one Emperor Tachyon who has a deep hatred towards Ratchet. Confronted by a past that he never knew he had, Ratchet and his buddy Clank set out on an adventure to get some answers and defeat the Emperor. We’ve never explored Ratchet’s history in past games and decided to begin the “Future” series by delving into the mystery of his existence. Clank also has his own major discovery when he learns that he has supernatural abilities – turns out he’s a robot with a mystical side! All of this takes place during their journey through a fascinating new galaxy where they encounter exotic alien worlds and creatures.

5. What did you do on this game that you couldn’t do on another platform?
As you can imagine, we get asked this question frequently because of the massive buzz about the console wars. Obviously, each console has its own unique strengths that would require us to approach our game development process a little differently. But Insomniac has developed exclusively for Sony and PlayStation consoles for more than 10 years now. We’ve done so because we have great relationships with the people there and because we believe in the hardware’s capabilities. To be honest, we don’t concern ourselves with what or how we could develop on other consoles since we’re happy working with Sony.

6. Do you have any “firsts” in this game that have never been done before?
Outside of breakdancing mutant alien centipedes, hip-hop bouncing Morph-O-Ray penguins and pelvic-thrusting mech bounty hunters controlled by fish heads, not so much. Seriously though, what Ratchet & Clank Future: ToD does offer is a tightly integrated, massive, epic, varied, and humorous adventure that should hopefully feel like a true evolution of the Ratchet & Clank franchise.

7. What do you think is the coolest aspect of this game?
That’s a tough question! I’m torn between the humor, the visual spectacle and the gameplay variety. The visual spectacle is the one thing that I think people will notice immediately. We’ve been able to create some very detailed and beautiful worlds that Ratchet and Clank visit and I think players will have a real sense of wonder when they explore them. The vibrant colors, expansive views, expressive characters, and massive explosions enhance every aspect of the game and create a rather engaging experience.

8. Describe one of the boss fights in the game?
One of our intense boss battles features a giant construction mech controlled by furry Kerchu aliens. The mech chases Ratchet along a transportation rail and smashes out pieces of it with its giant wrecking ball arms. Ratchet must jump the gaps and dodge missiles while racing down a twisty rail. All of this is viewed from multiple camera angles. Ratchet travels upside down and must fight the giant mech while hanging high above the arena floor using his gravity boots. The mech swings his heavy wrecking balls to pulverize the upper level of the arena, forcing Ratchet to drop down and fight the boss on the ground. While he’s on the lower level, the boss will unleash his wrecking ball attack, fire streams of rockets, and dump Kerchu creatures that can roll around in shielded exoskeletons. It’s fun to see all of the furry Kerchu creatures moving around while they operate this massive machine. You can strategically choose if you want to be on the upper section of the arena where the boss has fewer attacks, or on the lower section where the boss has more attacks and there’s more room to maneuver. Having an intense boss battle that takes place across a large section of the level and offers this degree of strategy is something that we’ve never done before in the Ratchet & Clank franchise.

9. If you could sit one person in front of your game for an hour, who would it be?
Nikola Tesla. I think he’d get a kick out of what we’ve done with electricity.

10. What game do you most want an hour to sit in front of yourself (besides your own)?
Little Big Planet – And I’m not saying that because it’s a PS3 game! From what I’ve seen, it looks like a heck of a lot of fun to build co-op levels and run through them with your friends. I want to build a Gauntlet of Doom with flamethrowers, monkeys and spinning blades!

11. How many E3’s does E3 2007 mark for you?
That would be…um…12. Man I’m getting old. Yep…sonny, I remember back in day when videogames were made up of just a few sprites and some decent color cycling…

12. Describe the pre-2007 E3 experience in five words or less.
Manic Rubber Sasquatch Love Thingy!

13. Most over used phrase or expression during E3 season.
“NEXT-GEN!” – And sadly, I use it all the time. I’m looking forward to when things become “Now-Gen” and I can drop the expression!

14. You are asked to make suggestions for an E3 survival kit- what three items HAVE to be included?
Past E3’s: Ear plugs, booth babe blinders and a tazor

15. What advice would you have for someone who has never experienced E3?
Don’t feel ashamed to cry. You can work through it. Time heals and eventually the pain will go away.

16. Describe what you anticipate from 2007’s newly formatted E3 in five words or less.
Sensible Pliable Sasquach Fun Thingy?

17. What’s your favorite part about developing games for a living?
My favorite part is when pieces of the game come together and create something more amazing than what was imagined. There are a lot of talented people at Insomniac and seeing the results of their combined forces is incredible. For example, our lead character artist came up with an enemy character that is a robotic suit controlled by an alien fish-like creature in a bubble. That was pretty funny in and of itself. The animators then took that insane character design and made some hilarious hip thrusting animations for when he dances to the Groovitron (a combat device that make enemies dance). Watching him dance made us all crack up. Finally, one of our programmers made the fish pop out of the suits when the enemy is killed and flop around. And of course, those fish also dance. Witnessing a scene of dancing robotic troopers and flopping fish under a disco ball against a beautiful city backdrop is an unforgettable moment. It’s great when that kind of chemistry comes together and magic happens.

//Add Your Own

125 Comments

51

+ nariko on July 2nd, 2007 at 2:43 pm said:

what about variety of guns?
this game is awesome


52

+ self.confessed.cynic on July 2nd, 2007 at 2:46 pm said:

Great interview – cool game…

nuff said I guess.


53

+ Godofwar55555 on July 2nd, 2007 at 2:49 pm said:

I agree we need a demo of this game on the PSN.

[]^XO


54

+ severeon on July 2nd, 2007 at 3:00 pm said:

Awesome interview


55

+ Karamo on July 2nd, 2007 at 3:06 pm said:

I can’t wait to be playing R&CTOD, It will be my first Ratchet game, I didn’t know much about Insomniac until i got my ps3 and played resistance and I tend to familiarize my self with developers who’s games I play. I’ve already preordered my copy and can’t wai’t


56

+ AznSniper on July 2nd, 2007 at 3:29 pm said:

Insomniac rules!


57

+ Kittonwy on July 2nd, 2007 at 3:49 pm said:

Yet another dev interested in LBP, whatzabout Uncharted or Lair? Don’t they get any love? >:(

Anyway, it’s GREAT to see so many developer interviews in the last month or so, it’s always good for those of us Playstation fans to have more insight into what goes into the great games that we play, I can’t wait to get my hands on R&CFTOD, we all know it’s going to be AWESOME. ~_~


58

+ RobinNL on July 2nd, 2007 at 3:58 pm said:

Great blog


59

+ Godofwar55555 on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:04 pm said:

Having the E3 demos on the PSN would be awesome.

[]^XO


60

+ jigglywiggly on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:05 pm said:

I know you guys probably get this all the time, but can I suggest a weapon?

The Laser of Love. Any afflicted enemy becomes totally smitten with the first thing it sees and runs at it to hug it. Be it Ratchet, a fellow enemy, an active grenade, an electric fence, a buzz saw, or fast-moving traffic.

Also, do you guys think you’ll be doing a demo for the PSN? I’d love to see one.


61

+ Gavi on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:11 pm said:

Have to give credit where credit is due and Insomaic have been leading the line for all other developers to follow with the PS3. They seem fully aware of what the gamer likes and needs and they always seem prepared to adapt to meet their needs. Their online game Resistance sets the benchmark for online gaming on the system and I eagerly await the sequel or prequel and their new upcoming game Ratchet & Clank. Keep up the great work guys, loving your work.


62

+ azad_champ on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:24 pm said:

R&C games are hilarous. I hope you keep up wth the humour this time around.


63

+ CrimsonCalibur on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:25 pm said:

Got to hand it to the guys at Insomniac, they are on a roll!


64

+ frito on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:31 pm said:

This is going to be a great game for sure!

It looks like the graphics are getting quite close to “Pixar-movie” but in real time!

Thanks for the interview!


65

+ B1ack_Mage on July 2nd, 2007 at 4:38 pm said:

R&C looks awsome, I can’t wait to get it. I think sony should put up game demos and videos from E3 similar to what microsoft is doing, it’ll make E3 even better for all of the consumers.


66

+ Keysersoze10033 on July 2nd, 2007 at 5:15 pm said:

I was never really into this series, but I will buy this game for sure :).


67

+ 40cal on July 2nd, 2007 at 5:18 pm said:

@XXBIGP123XX no one cares what you think about your PSP. I love mine. Hope one day you will enjoy doing your time for being a pirate. Click Click boom!


68

+ 40cal on July 2nd, 2007 at 5:21 pm said:

The visuals of this title look wonderful. WOW!

Sony, please put the demo on the PSN this Thur. Thanking you in advance.


69

+ rukusa on July 2nd, 2007 at 5:34 pm said:

Im sooo looking forward to Ratchet & Clank, and woah@ the screenshot. Please include unlockable trophies guys!


70

+ rukusa on July 2nd, 2007 at 5:57 pm said:

Also, I have one request to the dear Insomniac team.

Floor me with Resistance 2! Im so looking forward to your continuation.

As a launch title you made absolutely fabulous work, and you deserve to hear it.

Now, all I need to get is that damn 5000 games played medal, argh… :(


71

+ Untzboy on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:02 pm said:

This is quite awesome. You know what would be better? Pandora in the next PS3 firmware update! for you guys who don’t know, (maybe even you guys at sony, it’s an awesome internet radio service) An maybe Sony can push that 2.00 update out soon, too


72

+ Rockwallaby on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:02 pm said:

Godofwar55555:
“Having the E3 demos on the PSN would be awesome.”

Just videos would be pretty sweet


73

+ rickyraveen on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:09 pm said:

Just a heads up for UK ps3 gamers -might cheer you up a bit:-

Get Heavenly Sword for £19.50 Delivered

Instructions: 1. Go to http://www.littlewoods.com do a search for ps3 games.
2. Add your chosen PS3 to your basket
3. Enter ZG0333 = £30 OFF FIRST ORDER OVER £40!
4. Enter XX084 = 10% OFF NO MIN SPEND
5. Sign up for new account (if you don’t have one already)
6. The discounts will be applied before confirmation of payment.

I pre-ordered Assassins Creed for £27.50 Delivered!!!


74

+ Darren on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:18 pm said:

Looks great but the learning curve is still low


75

+ Darren on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:21 pm said:

hey! why did not my avatar appeared?

hoo it is there! cool


76

+ frito on July 2nd, 2007 at 6:32 pm said:

I don’t think people whould be able to SPAM the board so easily, like post # 73…

i’m sure a lot of different ages of people are posting here, so someone should kinda watch out for board spamming and such, for the good of the board and it’s continued existence!

thank you for listening!!


77

+ Vassago on July 2nd, 2007 at 7:33 pm said:

i never play ratchet bec its never hook me but this one look so great, look big and incredibly graphic :) sure i will try


78

+ dml102 on July 2nd, 2007 at 7:45 pm said:

I seriously cant wait for this game.


79

+ LeShin on July 2nd, 2007 at 7:58 pm said:

The Ratchet and Clank series is one of the best platformers I have EVER played! Can’t wait for the new one :D


80

+ PS3_123106 on July 2nd, 2007 at 8:08 pm said:

Insomiac; you made a fan of me with “Resistance: Fall of Man” I tip my hat to you good sirs


81

+ EvoAnubis on July 2nd, 2007 at 8:16 pm said:

Okay, I’ll admit it; I’ve never bought a Rachet and Clank title before. Furthermore, I might not even buy this one; i’m just not into platformers, for the most part, although Sly Cooper I think is great (mostly because it reminds me of Ocean’s Eleven).

So why am I posting this? What’s my point? Don’t know; maybe i don’t have one. Or maybe, just maybe, a kick-ass demo on PSN prior to the game coming out could sway me on this issue.

Or then again, maybe I’m just so hungy for content on PSN that I’ll download anything.

I officially declare this post free to interpretation.


82

+ PS3_GAM3R on July 2nd, 2007 at 9:22 pm said:

Sony if you love your fans please have a DEMO for Rachet and Clank, Heavenly Sword, and anything that this playable at this years E3 on the PSN! Please have it buy July 26th (last PSN update of month). If you do this, there will be more hype surrounding the games, and more hype for the PS3. You need to build the hype this summer, so by Winter 07 more, and more people buy this amazing system (PS3)!


83

+ gundamvee on July 2nd, 2007 at 9:50 pm said:

this game looks fantastic, def a must buy for me.


84

+ StormLord on July 2nd, 2007 at 10:12 pm said:

nice interview and good podcast, looking forward to the game


85

+ Kxpuc27 on July 2nd, 2007 at 10:29 pm said:

i think i’m actually going to own (i stress own) and play a R&C game for once instead of just casually playing a friends copy


86

+ ziggyd24 on July 2nd, 2007 at 10:58 pm said:

WOW


87

+ Deathalo on July 2nd, 2007 at 11:17 pm said:

This game does look awesome, I love insomniacs work and love the R&C series, can’t wait.

I also love how these interviews tell how to prepare for E3, it will help when I have to prepare for E4All, which will no doubt be just as big and crazy, if not worse… W00T! ^^

-DH


88

+ NAMEK on July 2nd, 2007 at 11:30 pm said:

SONY should put the gamer’s day presentation of R&C on the PSN. That demo look’d awsome!!!!!!!!!


89

+ EViD on July 3rd, 2007 at 12:00 am said:

looking forward to your game
when is a demo for it coming to PSN?


90

+ Apollo_Creed on July 3rd, 2007 at 1:00 am said:

My dear, this game looks really beautiful! This is gonna be one of the biggest PS3 games this year. You are doing a great job at Insomniac! First you released the killer-ap Resistance and now you are releasing the next killer-ap within one year! Briljant job. Is there a demo coming to the PSN nerwork anytime soon?


91

+ MarkBart0305 on July 3rd, 2007 at 2:53 am said:

Anybody notice that he did not answer question 5:

“What did you do on this game that you couldn’t do on another platform?”

I guess that means that they are doing nothing that can’t be possible on the Xbox 360.


92

+ MasterCharged on July 3rd, 2007 at 3:33 am said:

@#91MarkBart0305

stop being immature. would you rather he boast about “teh cell this and that” like every other developer? this place is not system war and im glad he avoided the question because i hate flame wars.


93

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 3rd, 2007 at 4:22 am said:

OMG it Ratchet & Clank!!! Screen shot look bad ass! I want it now!! lol ok been waiting for this title for very long time.. I’m Furry it’s in my blood, yay to Furry Fandom..

Well glad to hear more about this title and you guys at Insomniac have done great job. Really open power of PS3, unlike other developers.

Hey just head up, any hot anthropic animal chicks in this one? Ratchet had nice shock in Going Commando near the end :P I still draw her from time to time, it Furry thing.

Fox


94

+ jlocker on July 3rd, 2007 at 4:52 am said:

Insomniac Games, when you do Resistance Fall of Man 2 how about using up a 50GB blu-ray disc for the game. This will show people the importance of blu-ray for games and the new game could be longer and have a lot more content with a 50gb blu-ray disc for the game. This could be a Halo killer :)


95

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 3rd, 2007 at 5:04 am said:

ahh 250gb read only blue-ray disc


96

+ Globox82 on July 3rd, 2007 at 5:25 am said:

91MarkBart0305

If you listen to Insomniac podcast you will hear thats the the way those guys are. They don’t bash other consoles, they just don’t care that much. They work with Sony and that is enough. I respect them even more when they ignore this kind of questions, since answers are usually over-exaggerated, from every side.


97

+ ARMZ on July 3rd, 2007 at 5:38 am said:

So will Ratchet be able to split the world in two???

wink wink


98

+ HappySpaceInvdr on July 3rd, 2007 at 6:48 am said:

Please stop saying, “Describe it in five words or less.”

It’s “five words or **FEWER**”.

Did none of you attend English class at school?


99

+ dreamkin on July 3rd, 2007 at 6:58 am said:

Also… How about stopping saying “five words or less” altogether. Are we on clock here? Or does sony pay for every single word printed in this blog? Who came up with that five words or less idea anyway?


100

+ fireras on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:00 am said:

HEY PHIL, WE WANT EVERY E3 PS3 DEMO THAT WILL BE ON THE FLOOR ON OUR PS STORE THIS YEAR…MAKE IT HAPPEN!!!

IT WOULD BE AWESOME IF WE COULD GET THE FULL PRESS CONFERENCE….BUT I WANT THE DEMOS MORE.


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