Guerrilla Talks Studio Progression, Working On New IP
In order to achieve great things, a game studio must be willing to roll with the punches, work hard, and adapt to fan desires.
In speaking at GamesCom 2010, Guerrilla Games boss Herman Hulst spoke a great deal about the progression of their critically acclaimed Killzone franchise, which didn't exactly start with a bang on the PS2. Hulst said in those early days, the team was "highly energetic," but lacked "professional leadership and proper structure to guide their vision." Then came that infamous E3 2005 trailer for Killzone 2, which included pre-rendered graphics designed to portray what the final product would be capable of, and tossed the gaming world into a tizzy. It was really only supposed to be shown in "small, behind-closed-doors settings to select members of the press," but Sony loved that trailer and wanted everyone to see it. Guerrilla took this sign of confidence and ran with it...but Hulst says that trailer was both a "blessing and a burden." The burden was the studio's reputation as liars, while the blessing was a lofty goal "with no room for excuses." Thing is, that trailer was made before they even started making the game. So, with an "ambitious pitch video" but nothing to support it, Guerrilla set out to make something special.
KZ2 turned out to be a smash hit and is widely regarded as one of the best shooters of the generation. But they don't want to stop there; Hulst said after it came out, they adopted "an almost obsessive-compulsive" attitude where they took all the KZ2 reviews, noted every point, broke them up into categories, and assigned a numeric score based on the reviewer's opinions. The plan: take the 5 best-received features and do more with those, and take the 5 worst-reviewed features and either cut them out or fix 'em. Some points in the latter category were enemy AI, death animations, and multiplayer. Since the release of KZ2, Hulst says the team has put "their creativity in a pressure cooker" for KZ3 and that overall, Guerrilla's transformation has been like "putting lightning in a bottle."
Oh, and one last thing: he also confirmed that after Killzone 3, we can expect news about an all-new IP. That's right; they've started work on a whole new project, and we'll be very interested to learn about it when it gets unveiled. Based on their dealings with the press and their dedicated, no-nonsense approach to game creation, this studio is one of our favorite development teams.
8/18/2010 10:20:38 AM Ben Dutka