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Monday, November 28, 2005

Nintendo Revolution Developer Roundtable

Nintendo Revolution Developer Roundtable

"Are Developers Embracing Nintendo's Next-Gen Vision?

After Nintendo's announcements at the Tokyo Game Show where the company revealed its Revolution controller -- as a motion sensor-based object shaped like a remote control that can attach to other peripherals to create different functions -- people had questions. Lots of questions. And while Nintendo has done a good job of getting information on the controller's abilities out, there are still many questions fans have been asking that will likely remain until we start to see actual Revolution software.

Will the new controller lead to shorter games? How big of a deal is the lack of HDTV support? Will traditional games be popular on a machine designed to be different?

We took these and a few others to a group of impartial third-party developers to get their takes on all things Revolution, and to get a sense of how the development community views Nintendo now that the company has moved in such a drastically different direction from Microsoft and Sony.

Before we move on, meet our group of developers:

Tom Fulp, co-founder of The Behemoth
As one of the key figures behind indie breakout hit Alien Hominid, Fulp is one of the few independent developers in the United States developing GameCube titles. His team at The Behemoth is working on a currently untitled side-scrolling four-player beat-'em-up for current generation consoles.

Randy Pitchford, president of Gearbox Software
As the head of developer Gearbox, Pitchford has overseen one of the most successful traditional game franchises in the past few years with the Brothers In Arms series, which has distinguished itself from other titles in the war shooter genre thanks to its extremely lifelike artificial intelligence.

Karthik Bala, CEO of Vicarious Visions
Bala built Vicarious Visions into one of the most successful development houses around, with numerous under-the-radar licensed hits for Game Boy Advance and Nintendo DS, and the occasional big name title like DOOM 3 on Xbox. With Tony Hawk's American Sk8land, VV has the only third-party online Nintendo DS game currently on the market.

Geremy Mustard, co-founder of Chair Entertainment Group
One of the brothers behind the ambitious Advent Rising, Mustard is now working on an unannounced next-gen game for his new entertainment company, Chair. Not much is known about the new game nor company at this point.

Eric Holmes, lead game designer at Radical Entertainment
Holmes most recently worked on the go-anywhere smash-anything Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction for Vivendi. UD received a good amount of critical acclaim for nailing the feel of controlling a superhero, as players could run up buildings, leap off the top, and even surf on broken-down buses.

Chris Charla, executive producer at Foundation 9 Entertainment
Before companies like Backbone, The Collective, and Pipeworks came together to form Foundation 9, Charla served as one of the brains behind the charming PSP platformer, Death Jr." [more]

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