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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

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101

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:09 am said:

“I can describe it in five words or less”

Spacey Anthropic Heaven

Insomniac been true with Sony and got the job done, that true gamer there.

I still remember Insomniac first game for Playstation, my friend got the first next gen console on the block, I was still playing my N64 for Starfox64, that only game I wish was on playstation, ohh well only got GC for that game.. Nothing more..

Fox


102

+ Insane_Rooster on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:30 am said:

#Off topic#

When will we see Sony do what MS will do this E3?: http://kotaku.com/gaming/bicep-watch/xbox-live-to-bring-e3-home-again-274387.php

Would be fun to see the PSN store explode with E3 related content…


103

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:56 am said:

Would be nice to see E3 stuff on PSN store..


104

+ Evil v2 on July 3rd, 2007 at 8:48 am said:

Wouldn’t it be great if we got a PSN demo of this game right after E3 2007?


105

+ tielo on July 3rd, 2007 at 9:20 am said:

I’m so going to buy this game, hope for a demo first.


106

+ perroza on July 3rd, 2007 at 11:15 am said:

This game looks great. I was never a fan of R&C until I bout it for my son and saw how awsome it was. I cant wait to play this title next to my kid to wach him dance to the groovitron. Cant hardly wait.


107

+ Neil on July 3rd, 2007 at 11:29 am said:

Never bought a Ratchet and Clank game before but after playing Resistance and seeing vids for this game, I cant wait to buy it!


108

+ Scarecrow on July 3rd, 2007 at 11:30 am said:

Love the imagination of Imsoniac, specially when it comes to their enemy designs. I mean look at that T-Rex’s eye, that’s imagination right there.

This game will be flawless, and knowing Imsoniac it’ll be a challenging game unlike a lot of platforms out there.

Imsoniac FTW!


109

+ Scarecrow on July 3rd, 2007 at 11:33 am said:

By the way loved what he said ’bout Little Big Planet xD


110

+ KillaW0lf04 on July 3rd, 2007 at 11:43 am said:

omg, this game is awesome! i cant wait for it to come out! Great interview :)


111

+ MrDaBucket on July 3rd, 2007 at 2:51 pm said:

Ratchet&Clank, Ratchet Deadlocked and the R&C Future IPs FTW!!!!


112

+ Lp47 on July 3rd, 2007 at 3:53 pm said:

Insomniac is now my favorite company. Resistance was an awesome IP and now the new Ratchet and Clank looks amazing.


113

+ Devin1498 on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:28 pm said:

I want Ted Price to be my boy friend. Ask him out for me?? He’s soo dreeaamyy O:


114

+ Mitsugeta on July 3rd, 2007 at 7:37 pm said:

I love that bug in the right hand corner! He looks like he’s having a total freaking acid trip. >_


115

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 3rd, 2007 at 9:35 pm said:

~sits and dreams of playing Ratchet & Clank~


116

+ chacal81 on July 4th, 2007 at 11:19 am said:

Must buy title. Great blog.


117

+ starfoxACEFOX on July 4th, 2007 at 5:36 pm said:

This is not your little brother Zelda game. It Insomniac way of saying “wrench always get the job done”

Fox


118

+ Iron Man on July 6th, 2007 at 12:31 pm said:

This is definatly insomniac’s best yet, the other 4 R&C games were amazing! Thay were spectacular! They were awesome! And yet, this game makes them look puny! That’s how good it is! Resistace was an amazing game, aswel, but this makes that look small, aswel, I just can’t wait for the demo to be released! Or better yet… The game to be released!


119

+ Cueil on July 6th, 2007 at 3:58 pm said:

So is Sony going to be doing a thing like Microsoft with their Bringing it Home inititive?


120

+ CAPITAN QWARK on July 11th, 2007 at 5:44 pm said:

awesome! but I want to see more than CAPTAIN QWARK besides the mini-game in UP YOUR ARSENAL but really really great fun stuff.
O I have a question, I really don`t know anything about PS3 like, read the PS2 disc? cuz I want to play ratchet & clank series in PS3


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