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Inside the Developers Studio: Kyle Shubel

Jeff Rubenstein's Avatar + Posted by Jeff Rubenstein on Jul 10, 2008 // Sr. Social Media Manager

Our nearly-at-E3 interview series continues, this time with Kyle Shubel, who’s Managing Producer on both LittleBigPlanet and Killzone 2. Kyle’s got a lot of good advice for those looking to break into the industry and also answers the following questions that *you* asked (Blog readers who asked the question in parentheses):

  • If you get the chance, what game(s) do you most want to go hands-on with at E3 2008? (Genki-Rocket)
  • Who in the industry would you most like to collaborate on a game with? (indigovenom)
  • When did you know for sure that you belonged in the video game business? (Sindress)
  • What kind of advice would you give those currently in college and would like to pursue a career in video game development? (Voozi)
  • How often do you make technical changes to your games half-way through or late into the game development cycle based on something you’ve just seen or played from other developers? (P_tear_griffin)
  • If you could say one thing to the fans of your game/series out there, what would it be? (Xanog)

Kyle is a 13+ year veteran of the game industry, currently functioning as the Managing Producer, International Software Development at Sony Computer Entertainment, Kyle has also functioned as Producer at Interplay Productions and Contraband Entertainment.

Now that you know who he is and what he’s showing at E3 – what game-related questions do you want me ask Kyle next week? Tell me below.

Tomorrow’s interview: Tsubasa Inaba (Siren: Blood Curse)

//Add Your Own

84 Comments   15 Replies

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1

+ Trieloth on July 10th, 2008 at 12:23 pm said:

That was a cool video! keep’em come’n


2

+ Romzen on July 10th, 2008 at 12:25 pm said:

Thank you very much Kyle.

I am really curious how LBP and KZ2 is turning out to be. If they hold what they promised I am definitely gonna pick them up.


3

+ Engine on July 10th, 2008 at 12:26 pm said:

Awesome, can’t wait for this game :)


4

+ SDkngsht on July 10th, 2008 at 12:26 pm said:

hey…you guys should let people order sackboys online via your website or something.

kind of like a build-a-bear type situation where we could customize our sackboys like we do in the game and order them. i think a lot of people would order them for themselves, friends, family, girlfriends, spouses, kids etc.

i’m a grad student at USC and i can tell you right now i’d order one with a trojan sackboy lol.

just a thought…but good post. can’t wait to get my hands on the game.

peace.


5

+ matheaks on July 10th, 2008 at 12:27 pm said:

Amazing video, and I can’t wait for Little Big Planet. Killzone is not my type of game, sorry, but it still looks really cool.

Thanks Kyle!


6

+ XxBigP123xX on July 10th, 2008 at 12:27 pm said:

Question for next week,

LittleBigPlanet public beta, any thoughts on what time you’re going to launch it(If you are of course).


7

+ filthyvillain on July 10th, 2008 at 12:29 pm said:

I definitely dig the shirt.


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 2:57 pm said:

    Thanks, thought it was appropriate for a producer. :)


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 2:59 pm said:

    Not sure if my last post \’posted\’ as I can\’t see it, so please forgive any dupes.

    Thanks on the shirt comment, thought it was appropriate for a producer shirt. :)


8

+ kramer on July 10th, 2008 at 12:32 pm said:

ask what gave you the idea of making little big planet.

ps awsome interview.


9

+ E-DOGG on July 10th, 2008 at 12:32 pm said:

nice video! any info about the beta for lpb? how can we get in?


10

+ Trieloth on July 10th, 2008 at 12:32 pm said:

Sorry double post-But I just thought of my question : If you could change one thing about the gaming industry what would it be?


11

+ StalkingSilence on July 10th, 2008 at 12:36 pm said:

Hey Jeff,
I’m really enjoying this video series. Thanks for bringing it daily. You da man.


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    + Jeff Rubenstein on July 10th, 2008 at 12:42 pm said:

    Thanks. Sleep is for the weak!


12

+ VenomX on July 10th, 2008 at 12:36 pm said:

LBP is going to be GOTY. AAA title.


13

+ babybluedb on July 10th, 2008 at 12:42 pm said:

Awsome just Awsome these are two of the most long awaited games in my list along with Resistance 2

Qeastion- so when working on these two long awaited games in the PS3 community did you meet any new challenges and what was your most memorable moment in the creation of these two games


14

+ matheaks on July 10th, 2008 at 12:43 pm said:

Sorry for my second post,
Here is my questions:
1) If you could create a new special feature(sixaxis)for a new console, what would it be?

2) Is there going to be any offline and online multiplayer? Or just offline?

3) How much will Little Big Planet cost? Will it be available on the Store, like GT:Prolouge?

4) How long have you been working on LBP and Killzone 2?

4) What


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:03 pm said:

    1. hmm, can\’t really comment on something like that. :)
    2. LBP has both online multiplayer and offline multiplayer of up to 4 players on 1-4 PS3\’s.
    3. LBP is a Blu-Ray title and will be available in gamestores this Fall.
    4. I have been working with the home teams on LBP since March 07 and Killzone 2 since November 04 (omg!).


15

+ SDkngsht on July 10th, 2008 at 12:44 pm said:

hey…why’d my 2nd post get deleted? i didn’t say anything wrong or double post the same comments. what’s up?


16

+ babybluedb on July 10th, 2008 at 12:44 pm said:

@jeff i would kill to have your job


17

+ Fersis on July 10th, 2008 at 12:47 pm said:

Jeff ,do you know if any website is gonna be streaming the SONY conference at E3 ?
I miss Phil tough :’(
Im gonna start to ask this silly question everywere


18

+ Scodo_Thope on July 10th, 2008 at 12:48 pm said:

Purrfect Interaction! Great Stuff.

I can’t wait for LBP!


19

+ Slick on July 10th, 2008 at 12:50 pm said:

Yeah, I def dig these video interviews. I seriously hope they are going to stick around.

Props, Jeff.


20

+ SDkngsht on July 10th, 2008 at 12:52 pm said:

Jeff…what day is Sony’s E3 presentation this year? how about posting the presentation on the PSN that thursday in the update for those that might miss it?


21

+ SDkngsht on July 10th, 2008 at 12:53 pm said:

@ # 17…i think G4 might broadcast it again like they did last year. if not pretty much any gaming website will have it up like ign or gamespot.

hopefully Sony will put the video on the PSN for download that week. it’d be really cool to see it without commercials and in HD. lol.


22

+ Queso on July 10th, 2008 at 12:54 pm said:

Kyle: if you remember interplay you have to remember “neuromancer” and if you do remember it do a remake of it now!!!!!!!
kthnxbai!!!!!


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:05 pm said:

    LOL! sounds like someone in the know…

    I didn\’t work on \”Neuromancer\” when at Interplay but I think that it would be a blast, especially now that technology has gotten to where it is.


23

+ 3D3 on July 10th, 2008 at 1:01 pm said:

Nice interview. :)


24

+ wolverine81 on July 10th, 2008 at 1:05 pm said:

@Jeff

I know this is off topic, but… Any idea on when you guys might be able to give us something to show the red comments on the main post? Or maybe if there are new red comments?


25

+ Violater on July 10th, 2008 at 1:16 pm said:

Question for Kyle,
Is there anyway for someone with an architectural background to break into the market, and who do I send my resume to at Sony. :)


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:06 pm said:

    Hey Violater,
    Yes, Architecture would work in games, in fact many artists are from that background. If art would be your path, just make sure you are up to speed on 3D, update your resume and toss it into the pool. Oh, and get your demo reel up to speed, preferrably with something a little more \”fantastical\” than just houses, if you know what I mean. :)


26

+ joel on July 10th, 2008 at 1:16 pm said:

@Jeff

Sleep is for the week? THEN WE ARE ALL WEAK!!!

lol j/k

btw nice videos, and its awsome to see this going on with sony devs, very good things devs that actually care.


27

+ kramer on July 10th, 2008 at 1:16 pm said:

@jeff

Could you please stream live content of Sonys e3 presentation on the blog or somewhere because i cant find a site that will stream live footage. If you cant that’s ok.

ps thanks for the interviews!


28

+ WHAT on July 10th, 2008 at 1:20 pm said:

Kyle, I demand you try out for the next Survivor. This is entertainment at it’s best.

You totally had a MGS4 moment. I see a gif in your future.;)


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:07 pm said:

    LMAO! Survivor, huh? As you can see from the video, I don\’t like to miss meals. Don\’t know if I could cut it. ;)


29

+ Violater on July 10th, 2008 at 1:24 pm said:

video seems to take forever to load.


30

+ NewYork214 on July 10th, 2008 at 1:28 pm said:

cool video. guy is lucky gets to work on two of the biggest games comin out in the near future.


31

+ LordDeff07 on July 10th, 2008 at 1:41 pm said:

Feature creep, nice one. i can imagine how frustrating that must be, how do you guys feel about the hype surrounding KZ2. i sure as hell wouldn’t want to be you.


32

+ SpLinT on July 10th, 2008 at 1:46 pm said:

I want a Killzone Sackboy..


33

+ lanod on July 10th, 2008 at 1:48 pm said:

Kyle, did you test Wii Fit? ^^
(bad joke, sorry)


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:10 pm said:

    Man, I signed up for the beta, sent in my photo, but they turned me down for some reason. :(


34

+ Enforcer_X on July 10th, 2008 at 1:49 pm said:

These are awesome! I feel more connected to Sony to the coummunity and to the Devs.

Thank you for putting a face, a personality with all the games we love so much!

Nice work Jeff your officially hardcore!


35

+ GGCAN on July 10th, 2008 at 1:50 pm said:

Nice, thanks for the post.


36

+ chip5541 on July 10th, 2008 at 2:02 pm said:

Question for Kyle although maybe I should say questions.. :)

I see that you are credited with Lemmings on for SCEE. Are there any other Amiga classics, or not so classics, you would like to work on for the PSN?

Which was your favorite Interplay game that you worked on and any chance of it coming to PSN?

Any chance or a LBP doll of Nariko or her sister? *hint*hint* :)


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:18 pm said:

    Hey Chip,

    Yes, I worked on the updated version of Lemmings with SCEE for the SCEA release. There are several classics I would love to see personally, but whether or not they would make sense at the moment is always the question. I would love \”Eye of the Beholder\”, \”Syndicate\”, or \”Dungeon Master\”.

    Favorite Interplay game would have been Descent or Starfleet Academy, and as for PSN, no comment. :P


37

+ manguz2000 on July 10th, 2008 at 2:09 pm said:

For the GAP members that get to attend E3 for the SCEA Press Conference do we also get to play some games. :D


38

+ Jeigh on July 10th, 2008 at 2:11 pm said:

“Sleep is for the weak.” XD Brilliant.

A lot of the questions seem to be based on ‘getting into the industry’ (though that ‘feature creep’ was a pretty cool piece of information) so I’ll direct my questions the other way:

How has it been working on two of the most incredibly anticipated games in the industry at once? Sleep much? A lot of stress? Bodies hidden in the pantry?

After working so close to something like Killzone 2 for so long, one would understandably become desensitized to the ‘wow’ factor. Even so, are there still a lot of moments where you think “Holy sh… That’s amazing. ” ?

LittleBigPlanet seems like it’s firing on all cylinders at this point; how much more would you figure will be added between now and its release? More to the point, at this time in the development cycle what is the most common work being done on it? Quality Assurance/Debugging? Creating even more objects to use in level creation? Polishing? Network testing? (You know this thing could easily slam the PlayStation Network with the amount of interest in it. )

Hope at least one of these is good enough to be asked next week. :D


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:27 pm said:

    Hi Jeigh,
    Sleep truly is for the week, yes, Stress, got plenty, thanks for asking, bodies, what bodies…

    Killzone 2 is an interesting and fun one, being that I worked with the team at Guerrilla on the first title and on the PSP game, Killzone: Liberation, I am very close to the title. You do lose a little of the wow factor when you work on a title for a long time, but the guys (and girls) at Guerrilla do still suprise me build to build with their artistic sensibilities and what they are able to make the PS3 hardware do.

    LBP is totally firing on all cylinders and we are on that final run towards final. The thing that I love about this title is the level of creativity from the team at Media Molecule. We will have a level which I thought was \”good enough\” and I will get a build where an artist / designer will decide that they wanted to spruce things up a bit and then WHAM! holy crap this is my favorite level in the game… Seriously, they just gave us a build which is using a \”trampoline\” style mechanic in a mini game and we got 4 controllers and couldn\’t stop playing it. Absolutely crazy.


39

+ CrimsonCalibur on July 10th, 2008 at 2:12 pm said:

Great interview! Kyle seems like a solid guy to have at the helm. Really liked all of the behind the scenes info.


40

+ Kratos10 on July 10th, 2008 at 2:13 pm said:

I have heard that their is not an ability to make your own designs for sack boys after littlebigplanet launches. Would you consider adding this tool at a later date?


41

+ Stoffinator on July 10th, 2008 at 2:55 pm said:

I have a question for Kyle

How hard is it to work on a game that you know just about everyone wants to know about. Yet you can’t speak about it?

Example would be, you know how Killzone 2 plays and looks, but before it was shown, you couldn’t talk about it. How hard is that?


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:30 pm said:

    Hey Stoffinator,
    You hit on probably one of the most difficult aspects of being out there in the public talking about games. I do know much more about titles than I can talk about. Even posting here on the blog is a bit of a dance as to what I can and can\’t talk about.

    The big thing I just remind myself is that you guys are here because you want to be and that you want to know as much as you possibly can about the game. Even the smallest thing can be interesting. I have been dealing with the \”create\” side of LBP for over a year, but you haven\’t, so it is still interesting. Stuff like that.


42

+ erico316 on July 10th, 2008 at 3:00 pm said:

jeff what the status of the psn id integration with the ps blog?


43

+ erico316 on July 10th, 2008 at 3:03 pm said:

also i love the video keep on and try to get some developers on the blog next week maybe john from capcom can return on the blog or even have some one from sega or atlus,i wish for square-enix to be on but i know that not going to happen.


44

+ pshelper on July 10th, 2008 at 3:11 pm said:

Great interview kyle! keep up the good work!


45

+ Totao on July 10th, 2008 at 3:16 pm said:

hey kyle I saw on n4g that littlebigplanet its on the beta stage. Do you know or are able to say if there will be an open beta soon. I love your enthusiasm for games it looks like you love what you do….


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:32 pm said:

    Hey Totao,
    Unfortunately I can\’t comment on the Betas, lets just say that we are actively testing LBP and trying to get her ready for you guys this Fall. If I am able to get more of you involved, I will.

    And yes, this job pretty much has to be a \”crime of passion\”. Can you believe it, they pay me to be a kid?!?!


46

+ TheBadger on July 10th, 2008 at 3:17 pm said:

I love the time before E3, even in its current form I cant help but get excited.

Glad to see Kyle back (I remember talking with them fairly regularly when they posted in the Killzone section. I’m Cabbage, if you remember)

Cant wait until LBP or Killzone 2, both of which are already at the top of my Must Haves list.


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:33 pm said:

    d00d, Cabbage! I totally remember you having my back on the Killzone forums.

    Looking forward to seeing you online on both LBP and Killzone 2.


47

+ CartBlanche on July 10th, 2008 at 3:18 pm said:

Hi Kyle,
When I say, I really loved Descent, I mean I really loved it!!!
I used to tell my wife I was working late just so my works collegues and I could boot up a Descent server to have an hour or 2 of Descent after a hard day at work and before going home. I can but hope that someone, out there, is working on a PSN remake of this classic. Actually I would love to work on such a title. Recapuring the madness, mayhem and total fun that was Descent.

That’s it, I’m applying for a PS3 SDK!!!


48

+ lanod on July 10th, 2008 at 3:26 pm said:

Thanks for your response Kyle, nice humor.

So can you affirm LBP and KZ2 will have trophies?


49

+ Id00urmomma on July 10th, 2008 at 3:28 pm said:

Let Little Big Planet Public Beta Exist…
please…. :)


50

+ XxBigP123xX on July 10th, 2008 at 3:30 pm said:

“3. LBP is a Blu-Ray title and will be available in gamestores this Fall.”

Wait, LBP is still going to be on the PSN store right?


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    + Kyle Shubel on July 10th, 2008 at 3:34 pm said:

    Nope, LBP is a full blown BD title.


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