Guild Chat - Episode 54

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Guild Chat - Episode 54

Title
Path of Fire™ Story and Setting
Host
Rubi Bayer
Guests
Matthew Medina
Connie Griffith
Stephen Hwang
Hugh Norfolk
Clayton Kisko
Date
September 7, 2017
Official video
YouTube


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The following is an unofficial, player-written transcript of the episode. The accuracy of this transcription has not been verified by ArenaNet.

The episode of Guild Chat aired on Sep 7, 2017. Host Rubi Bayer interviews members of the narrative and creature teams where they discuss the story and setting of Guild Wars 2: Path of Fire™!

there's a crisis going on in alona in an
area that we have not been to in 202
years we're going to go back to the
Crystal desert five whole new maps
bigger than any map we've done before
iconic locations exploration discovery
it's going to be really cool
hi everybody and welcome back to guilt
chat a happy Thursday we are just over
two weeks out from the path of fire
lunch so this is our last guild chat
before we go live with Pat the fire
today we're gonna be talking about the
crystal desert maps and story and some
of the creatures there so I'll introduce
you to our first round of dev guests
Matthew McConaughey Steve why don't you
guys say hi hi I'm Matthew Medina I'm a
story team lead for path fire I'm Connie
Griffiths I'm also a story designer on
Matthews team steepling I'm one of the
game designers thank you guys and we
have the latest round of goodies from
WeLoveFine like I said last week we are
WeLoveFine is getting ready for the path
of fire launched just like we are so we
have Connie scored the joy a t-shirt
yeah we do have some cool new t-shirts
from and they're available on their
website - the googly eyes Connor brought
in a list of googly eyes and we were
maybe messing around a little bit so
that was fun but a little fiercer
looking it was as much fun as sticking a
basket on Balthazar's head yeah yeah we
should probably show them what they
actually look like there there's I still
would not like go up and snuggle a Choya
just or Balthasar really anything here
because they're all dangerous or pointy
or Bernie in some way or another
yeah bout Balthazar doesn't do hugs he
doesn't seem like the nicest dude and
yeah that could be a different that's a
very different feel Chet okay so oh you
know what
okay here we do have one huggable thing
I forgot about our quaggan mug which you
can I know I love it so you know why I
love it is because it's huge and I know
you feel I should have put my coffee
right yeah feel how much I love all the
coffee that you can put in this thing so
huge quaggan mug that you can pre-order
from we left fine right now alright so
why don't we jump in and start talking
about where we're going and have fire
because we are going back to the crystal
and I know I'm not the only one happy
about this
can we talk about I mean if you're a
long time Guild Wars one player Guild
Wars 2 player you know this is a
familiar place with a big history and a
lot of backstory and the first thing
that I wanted to talk about with you
guys is how did you go back to this
place making sure Guild Wars 1 players
felt like they were a you know we're
going back to a familiar place without
making Guild Wars 2 only players feel
like they were left out and like it was
just one big backstory that they weren't
understanding yeah it was one of the
chief challenges I think we had when we
first sat down to talk about where
exactly we were going we knew we were
going to the Crystal desert and the
north part of alona but that's a very
big space anyone who has seen the maps
on our wiki or in game knows that
there's there's a lot of ground to cover
and and there's also a lot of history
there from lore 1 and the first thing we
we said when we sat down to plan out
where we were gonna take the story was
the thing we have to avoid is making it
feel like we're just taking a tour of
teria because there's definitely an easy
way to do that which is hey there's this
spot that was in prophesies there's this
spot there was a nightfall and you know
yes we want to include those things
because they're relevant there they're
powerful places their place there are
places that we want to return to but we
didn't want to make it feel like
everything on the checklist was getting
taken off the the list
yeah it's similar to the release game
where you know we looked at places that
was in Guild Wars 1 and said which what
would happen 250 years later yeah and
you know is there's some visual
storytelling some remnants of the past
and you know what places you definitely
want to revisit but not make them
mandatory you know it's it's all part of
the flavor of the world and I was gonna
say both Steve and Matthew you guys both
worked on Guild Wars once so yeah
after one who is you know relatively new
to the team I joined for path of fire
development and that was actually a
really important thing was to talk with
some of the people that actually worked
on nightfall and on prophecies and
understand what things had emotional
impact like what things did players
remember what was what the community
really have strong feelings or memories
about and find a way to to honor them in
tough fight I remember idris owning me
oh yeah and we're gonna talk about the
hydras here in a little bit because that
was one of the things and we were
talking about that the other day the
first time one of them like it hit me
with meteor you know like meteors just
started raining down I just sat there
going well I guess we deserved that we
kind of we kind of did it for me
personally you know I hopefully out a
lot of the maps in Guild Wars 1 I'm
actually one of the guys who helps make
sure that the world maps match up and so
if there's a major landmark I'd love to
you know see what happened to it you
know 250 years later yeah you have like
it's like a 500 megabyte yesteryear
something that's layered of yeah there
was one map here's the Guild Wars 2 map
and so that we can actually verify ok
pixel for pixel this is where things
would be obviously in 250 years and
especially with the upheaval of the
Elder Dragons things can shift and
change yeah we don't want the world to
feel like it's completely static but it
helped us plot out okay here's where am
noon Oasis was and it was this tiny
little outpost right on them barely
anything to right yeah and now it's this
massive city so like we had to construct
what would be around there so wrapping
seekers village into it so that it's
sort of on the north side and so all
that stuff is stuff that we love to get
into as designers yeah and some of the
maps like our map artists are amazing
you know I know Justin he you know and
tears that they both you know and Jesse
they all know the maps really well they
worked on Guild Wars 1 and so you know
we actually can just you know get the
hide maps from the Gilders wanting to
use them as a basis for you know Gilders
two maps but you know they just went
overboard and just totally made them all
these unique places that go visit and
find
yeah you were saying you worked with
Justin Fossett oh yeah layering those
maps yeah he he's one of you know the
original set of environment artists that
made those maps and so he knows those
like the back of his hand
you know yeah so putting in all those
touches not forgetting you know what
used to be there you know that that's
that's having that callback is great but
it's not you know something that you
need to know so since you came in for a
pacifier development do you feel like we
struck a good balance I think so I mean
for me a lot of it was being new to the
project there was a lot of like learning
and catching up and talking with people
familiarizing myself with the lore and
that included like doing deep dives on
the wiki's like watching YouTube videos
and it was really great where I could
have the perspective world I'm not as
familiar as some of these folks about
what went on during the crystal desert
and so it was sort of like a good litmus
test we're like oh well does this make
sense if I'm not deeply steeped in what
happened yeah and that's a good thing to
have I think because we have players who
are exactly like that it's not just okay
who's been around since the very very
beginning yeah and we can't only design
for them so I think it's appreciated
there was a conscious decision where
there are so many times when we would
put stuff in and we would say is this
too much of an inside thing right like
you know would this make sense to
someone who doesn't know who's just
seeing this for the first time so that's
definitely something we kept in mind we
were designing the content yeah and and
for a moment in the story where it is
kind of necessary for us to have that
backstory we made sure to to seed it
into the story so that players who are
coming into this expansion not knowing
that lore can get it by playing
pacifiers so that hopefully you know
we've made a smooth on-ramp for people
who do need to understand the history of
the place because it is it is an
integral part of the story that we tell
but we want to make sure that it's as
smooth as possible for everybody that's
plain
I mean there's definitely places that
are you know so iconic that you know you
have to go there or and they're so
monumental that yeah they would survive
you know 250 years I think actually for
me that's what interested me the most
because I don't think it's just it's not
just about the story right like the
world of Tyria is one of our major
characters in our game and I think that
looking at it our characters have
changed over the course of her story and
part of it is looking at Theriot looking
at Ilona right like how has it changed
in the last 150 years how have the
events of the world reshape the
landscape how does it affect the culture
how does it affect the people right
we're just we're not just making NPCs
and designing gameplay like we're
talking about how a living breathing
character has altered over the course of
time yeah yeah um you know what that's
actually something else that I wanted to
get into you were talking about the
population and the culture and we're not
only going into a part of the world that
is very different than what we've
experienced before but we've got we have
social situations and we have a culture
that's very different and there was a
lot that you guys did to work with that
so do you want to talk about that some
yeah actually I was so impressed so for
example I saw on a number of designers
desks and especially our writers or even
art our systems are in fact he was the
one that was spearheading that Josh Diaz
they had books like the history of salt
right North African cuisine right they
did their due diligence they went the
extra mile to learn more about the
real-world counterparts for Ilona the
inspirations that we draw and you know
for the crystal desert like they really
went into trying to understand like how
that worked what how did these people
live right what food did they eat and
you can sort of see that that trickles
down and so many things that you can
find in game the cooking recipes you
were saying Josh and you know making
coffee oh yeah yeah you actually you
should talk about that you know Josh
really wanted to get involved with these
recipes and
make it authentic so he reached out to a
group I don't know the specifics but but
how they how indigenous people would
make you know coffees and due to the
ritual to make it and what it would feel
like to be you know let's say someone
who's refugee coming not in best
circumstances and then just bring a
little bit more authenticity Oh actually
yeah no Josh also yeah Josh also
organized a meeting with the writers and
the narrow desires to meet with a woman
who runs a refugee group here in Seattle
and sort of talked about the experience
so that when we you know created our
refugees that are running from Balthasar
that are fleeing the crystal desert that
that we could be well informed and make
sure to you know approach and depict
this situation with with sensitivity and
you know a better understanding of what
it's like yeah yeah we I think got
praised for the way we depicted the
cultures of yellow nians and bobbies and
all that in nightfall and so we had a
high bar for ourselves that we had set
and we we knew that if we're going to go
back there we had to do the same thing
again we couldn't make you know a bunch
of you know the Crichton outfits that
are all over the game like we couldn't
just put those on people and have it
look right yeah so we wanted to make
sure that we took all the pains
necessary to create authentic looking
you know characters authentic looking
outfits authentic culture and
architecture and all of the things that
you would expect to to find if you go to
a new region or in rare cases originally
been to before but it is new to Guild
Wars 2 because we didn't have a lot of
the assets that we would need to build
alona and crystal desert region with the
you know the core set of things that we
had built for the launch game yeah
there's a lot more that you can do all
of these years later yes anything they
totally I mean it's been 250 years when
we last left Ilona
you know pulao joke owers up becoming
you know he had returned and so you know
what has happened you know he he's very
prevalent and so like how do people live
under you know his rule basically what's
that like it's not good well it depends
on who you ask
it's true so you know you're gonna have
people who feel oppressed and want to
flee and who are throwing and then
you'll have those who are sympathetic
and think djoko's man yeah praise Joko
suddenly I'm like djoko's the man
suddenly I'm picturing this on a t-shirt
which is probably not something that
came out of I don't think you're putting
in game he is the type of guy that you
know thanks pretty highly of himself so
he seems like that like so all of this
but this stuff all made it into the game
like you were saying the cookbooks and
all of her cooking recipes makes sense
from though yeah from that study so you
know we added a number of new recipes to
path afire and all of them are inspired
by ingredients that you would find in
the North African region in the
Mediterranean region the new recipes
that you can make also are inspired by
ingredients and recipes that are from
that ya know I mean it's a desert region
and so you know we find a flower it's
gonna be a desert flower yeah yeah but
you know a desert you know the Elan has
also been diverted and so it's not just
all desert let's talk about the NPCs and
the characters that populate the world a
little bit because you were talking
about the voice actors and how we worked
with that to make sure and it's not just
it's not just the things that you find
lying around the world it's the people
there as well so do you guys want to
talk about the voice acting a little bit
yeah I mean we when we first got around
to casting you know we we we cast are we
have kind of like a stable of people
that we have rely on for a law
of our voice-acting so we cast them and
you know immediate it was a obvious we
got some of the voice back that no this
doesn't sound right like it doesn't
sound like the region should sound
something is alright right like and we
we we want to honor the you know the
right sound for this region as well so
we went back we recast actors of color
and took a lot more pains to make sure
that hey when we have a role it has to
sound like you know the kind of person
that you would hear in this region and
not just somebody you know doing an
accent or putting on a bad voice you
know I mean our actors are wonderful but
you know there's there's just an
authenticity that was missing and so we
went back and redid some of those roles
yeah and we're gonna talk about that
later
but it's it is difficult when you've put
a lot of work into something to have to
stop and say okay this this doesn't
quite feel right we need to backtrack
and do that again so oh we recorded the
entire vo or one of my stories but I
mean that's what I love right that as a
company we're committed to doing the
right thing and yeah sure cost extra
money you know all that jazz and yes we
record the video so it was important to
us that as Matthew said right that we
have the right sound for two people that
we're creating that these characters are
authentic both in voice and in
appearance yeah I mean we just wanna
make memorable characters I mean in the
story and in the open worlds as well in
the world kind of complements the story
you know we did a lot better time
talking between open world and story
teams to coordinate and to have feel a
little bit more holistic so that you
know when things dovetail into one
another
you see characters that hopefully are
memorable and you know one of the things
I worked on was some of the hearts and
yeah you know I always remember you know
from original release farmer ADA the and
her apples but to make memorable NBC's
like that so that you know you could go
through the game and there's definitely
some hearts where you could just finish
without ever talking to an npc and you
know in the open world
I'd like it to give a little bit more
character replace some of the ambient
conversations near waypoints and
services so that you'll overhear those
just to create a background for the
story of telling one more thing that I
want to address on just on this subject
on making it work so well is the new
faces and hair that we added because I
know there were a lot of players a lot
of you guys were really really happy
about that and the fact that we just put
them in character creation so when you
build a new character when you make your
new path of fire character they're right
there and that felt so good
yeah and now that was also another thing
and we're praising Josh Diaz a lot today
that was also one of his calls as well
where we you know when the artist said
hey we can we can give you all these
options for NPCs we were like that is
awesome
like now we can build all the different
characters that we need for for the game
to tell the story but it was obviously
like couldn't we make these available to
players too and he was like absolutely
and we're not going to make it you know
we're not gonna hide him in the you know
the makeover kit makeover kits we want
everyone to have access to them as soon
as we are done with making them and we
ship them to everybody so that they have
those available as options and I think
it's the right thing to do so well yeah
it's not a it's not a special or fancy
hairstyle it's just an it's a hairstyle
yes everybody should have yeah yeah I
think you guys everyone involved did a
really good job on that
yeah I'm incredibly impressed with our I
mean I remember when we first got them
across my desk okay you know I just had
chills I was like this looks like what
we expect to have in the game and it was
just so refreshing to see that you know
we were taking those extra pains to make
sure that we had all the right pieces
yeah from the concept thing of the you
know new armors and to the you know
creating the faces and the hairs and you
know the
armours and rigging them all the
different you know skeletons it's a big
endeavor I'm excited I'm excited for
people to see some of the new armors yes
very very soon I'm excited to see the
cosplays oh yeah yeah
well we've seen one and I'm sure we will
start a cosplay community you guys are
amazing you guys are fantastic so I know
last week we talked some about we talked
a whole lot about mounts in path of fire
but you guys worked with that a little
bit too and I want to approach that from
a different angle since we're talking
about things that fit in this particular
region and you guys worked a lot on what
what type of creature would fit here in
the region yeah you know the that the
important thing for us with designing
the mounts wasn't all but you know it
was centered around movement mechanics
but it was also okay given those move
mechanics what actually makes sense
based on the region so all of the mounts
creatures feel like there's something
that had evolved and you know been a
natural part of the desert environment
that these people have learned how to
domesticate and put saddles on and start
riding around so you know the Raptor
definitely looks like a you know a
scaled lizard that you would find in the
desert the springer looks like you know
kind of a combination between a desert
rabbit in a you know kangaroo rip and a
kangaroo rat so you know we have a lot
of that where we tried to again keep the
authenticity and you know hopefully they
with their visuals tell a story of like
this is how they came to be this
creature sorry we were distracted by the
spring he's kind of fantastic but you
know we designed the maps to take you
know advantage of these mounts and you
know our artist did a great job you know
creating places that are accessible and
take advantage of their abilities but we
also have you know fewer waypoints the
desert is vast these are the largest
maps and so you need these mouths to get
around I mean it might look like a long
distance but when you're on a mount it's
not that long it's pretty quick yeah
yeah and we've got the skimmer which you
would think might I think a lot of
people's initial thought was well desert
why which you know a you can use them in
court area so that's handy but there's
also some water happening there it's not
just dry land everywhere well I mean
with the Elan flowing we definitely
wanted to create like natural habitats
for the mouths
feel like they could live here this is
where they could have been raised and
that was their home so let's get right
yeah I mean the the interesting thing
too about the skimmer I think sort of
boggled a few of us early on was it
looks like a sea creature right so what
is the secret you're doing the desert
but then if you look around you see sand
sharks you see sand eels you see
somewhat aquatic creatures and if you
think back to the history of Guild Wars
one we know that Abaddon you know had a
falling out with the other gods they
struck him down in the battle sort of
created what used to be the crystal sea
and turned it into this crystal desert
so it kind of makes sense that over the
hundreds of thousands of years since
that momentous occasion some of the sea
creatures that used to live in the
crystal sea figured out ways to survive
on land and and so this is sort of the
result life finds a way yeah
interior is nothing if not dominus so
yeah it does it's it is handy it is
convenient it works but it also does
speak a little bit to the history and we
were commenting that evolution seems to
have a really fast interior sometimes in
life sometimes do whatever works but you
know they started out maybe in some of
those low-lying water areas and you do
what you can
mm-hmm I mean story and
I'll take advantage of amounts redesign
events that have you utilized them give
you advantages when you're using using
them we just wanted to integrate it a
little bit more so that it felt natural
yeah well I think it's working out
pretty well I was playing around on the
skimmer yesterday and it was so much fun
let's move on and talk about some of the
characters that we're bringing with us
to the desert because there's there's a
luckily you guys had a big cast or quits
really hard to figure to figure yeah so
just bring a huge parade to the Crystal
desert with you all right everybody come
on here we go
yeah I mean we first started talking
about it we we put all the names up on
the whiteboard right and we said okay
big whiteboard who who's coming with us
and we we really want to make sure that
the names that were left on that list
made the right sense for us for the
story we were telling some of them it
didn't make sense because they're
dealing with other things back in Tyria
some of them are indisposed some of them
have you know other agendas that they
would rather pursue and so what we ended
up with is RIT lock Kanak and Kazmir can
you say that you're incredibly
diplomatic some of them are dealing with
other things you're talking about
because we're all aware we are probably
all aware I just yeah
I'm Bram fan so I can't get just my main
guy he was I worked on the flaming frost
dungeon so Bram and I go way back
okay he's my bro broham yeah so relic
shows up in the first story instance
which some players have already yeah I
met him to you know experience through
the previews and stress tests and
there's there's a whole thing there
where players are waiting to heal
they've been wanting to know some key
information that he's been holding on to
for quite some time
yes later Cub is his thing that will not
be a thing for much longer without
saying too much because I don't want to
spoil
we definitely are not going to take no
for an answer in this expansion so
relock will have some things to say and
yeah that's about all I can say about
relock and they cannot kanakas just he's
our cool sort of like you know he's he's
had a really interesting path I like him
so much he's been a criminal he's been a
mercenary he's been and you know less
than cooperative prisoner got a title it
yeah so it and now he has his freedom
right he's he's out from under the
countess's control and he really doesn't
quite know yet what to do with his
freedom and so he kind of shows up in
the desert because being what the
commander has turned out to be not too
bad for him so I think he's looking to
explore any chapter in his life and he
sees that the commander might just have
the next answer yeah I kind of love that
that Kanak is like I'm free oh no what
to do with myself okay I go find the
commander yeah he's really good at being
under someone's thumb and being salty
about it and yeah laney yeah which was
great and fun because he's got the snark
down pat oh yeah I mean I love that we
included him not just because I was like
oh thank god now we're gonna have some
fun snark inner instance yeah yeah but
now yeah but now he's his own man and
it's kind of like oh gosh I didn't think
what do I do
yeah well I mean rounding out our cast
then is Kashmir and I think Kazmir was
an obvious pick because you know we're
dealing with Balthazar we're dealing
with one of the six we're dealing with
human gods and you know one of the
things that was very interesting to us
on the story team was okay well then
what does this mean right Kazmir in many
ways is a proxy for human players and
for players that are not playing human
characters in Guild Wars 2 right but you
know still identify from Guild Wars 1 or
whatever she kind of becomes his vehicle
where we can explore that right like we
didn't want to just you know have like
can we
oh well if L start a bad guy so
Kessler's all important oh yeah we want
to explore you know how would you react
right if one of your gods comes back and
is it not a good person
yeah because this is the foundation of
her entire life yes I mean and I liked
it to where it was interesting we did a
lot of passes on Kazmir zark and again
don't want to spoil anything too much
but you know there definitely was a
sense where you know Kazmir has had
quite a journey right and I think that
it goes a long way to help develop
Kazmir as a character right she's not
just like a like a fluffy pretty thing
right like this is her standing up
finding her voice evaluating what it is
she believes in what she's willing to
stand up and fight for and I think
that's an important journey for like
anyone to have right so no spoilers
right but yeah I I'm really excited for
players to sort of understand in the sea
the journey that Kazmir goes on with you
yeah it's gonna be interesting to see
how she deals with this and how she
moves forward because it was it came at
an unfortunate time when she found out
oh that's Balthazar yeah and it did
completely break her and I know there
was a lot of and I know that was my
initial reaction was oh my gosh you just
stood there and look what you let happen
yeah but that was that's like we were
saying that is that was the basis of her
life and it just broke in front of her
eyes so yeah the the living world team
do a great job in Episode five yeah
where you know you the the were able to
show that initial confrontation and you
know we've shown the footage also and
some of our trailers where you just see
Kazmir she just sinks attorneys and in
the enormity of what she's confronting
right in yeah it's heavy stuff there's a
lot to work with going forward to him
that's like you said it did seem like an
obvious pick but I'm still so glad that
she was the obvious pick and then we got
timing in her backpack always in the
open world you you will hear you know
NPCs talk about the heroes who wants you
know visited terior there I mean I the
crystal desert they're like legend now
and you know well they'll talk about
though the heroes who saved
omona nightfall yeah and you know that's
part of their history now and so there's
a little bit of callback there for those
characters but those are you know just
something you know tried to make the
world feel you know more whole there's
there's some stuff to watch for yes sir
without spoiling yeah but there are
things to watch for Connie you mentioned
kazimierz arc and we had talked before
about going back and making changes when
we were recasting voice actors and you
guys had to do that some with story as
well so you guys run with that yeah I
mean you know we're a studio that sets
higher and higher standards for
ourselves every time we put out a
release so you know we did this heart of
thorns we've done it with every episode
of living world season three we continue
to do it four paths afire and there was
a point in the path of fires development
where we sat down and we we had
everything blocked in and we could play
the story all the way through and we
found plot holes we found things that
just weren't they just weren't good
enough yet and so you know you could
continue to polish at that point and
just really well
maybe it'll get there right like or you
can take a sledgehammer to some of the
scripts and we opted to do the
sledgehammer approach I mean it sounds
worse than it is I think in some ways
it's it's not fun while it's happening
because you you are sort of invested
heavily in what you're doing at that
point still even though you know it's
not finished yet and so it can it can
hurt to have to go through and rip apart
what you did but I mean I think that's
that's the journey every artist and
every creative person goes through talks
about our studio culture a little bit
twos like we want to get things into the
game as soon as possible so you can play
it see it and see how it feels and then
then you have that chance to make
iteration on it you know get you know
another pass you know tweak
around it's something that you know even
from you know the early days I'll get
killed one getting things into the game
giving him playable and then if it
doesn't work get it out of the game yeah
I mean there's concrete examples like
the the the the instance that people get
to play sparking the flame that's
probably I would say the fifth iteration
of that instance really yeah there's
been a number of them that we've built
and scrapped its ouch but at the same
time I think it makes so that that
version that's in the game is one we
absolutely believe in because we have
worked on it over again and over again
and now it's like yeah that is what
we've been wanting from the beginning
and it's just sometimes it takes a while
to get there that's part of the creative
process so yeah well thank you guys very
very much without too many spoilers or
any spoilers that you're coming I know I
look at you because I'm the you're the
person that I asked can we spoil things
yeah
what are you most looking forward to
player seeing and pacifier I know what
I'm excited about but you go first well
I was gonna say but I don't know if I
can talk about you're also the person I
go to where can I talk about that yeah I
I think that I'm really excited to see
things we we definitely revisit we
definitely revisit certain things there
are stories that don't always get to be
told in game that have been told through
like our franchise novels yes that's
true and you know as many of you know
those are considered canon and you know
sometimes there was a time or we just
weren't able to do it justice in game
and so I feel like you know going back
and hitting some of those beats going
back and addressing some of things that
happened off screen so to speak yeah I'm
really excited to see how Claire's will
react when they actually get to see
those things right like you know we read
reddit we read the forums and we see
like go back to this talk about this and
I wish that we could address all of them
and unfortunately we can't yeah but the
ones that we can let's just say that we
definitely try and hit on some of the
things that we see people clamoring
about them and it I as you know a
developer really want to see how players
will see like reacts to that yeah I
can't talk about mine in detail but I
have sort of you can be vague yeah I've
hinted it on my on my Twitter that there
was an idea that I pitched it one of our
story meetings and I said what if we did
this crazy-ass thing yeah and the rooms
eyes lit up and I was like wait oh that
always feels good and then they're like
yes let's do that and then we all rolled
into it and we discussed all the options
and I will say having played it not that
long ago like last week I can say we
fully realized that idea and I'm just it
makes my heart so proud like I can't
believe so many a thought my idea that
was crazy was cool and B that we
actually deliver on it in every way that
I could have ever imagined it's really
awesome to see so no spoilers maybe next
to guild chat where we talk about the
post path of our story episode we can I
can tell you more about what that was
for me you know I worked on a lot of the
Googlers one maps and just to have
players revisit those locations those
iconic locations and how they've changed
and their reactions to them that's one
thing I'm looking forward to but also
I'm looking forward them finding you
know a story or an NPC that they really
thought was you know interesting or you
know memorable be it you know someone a
kid you know a family you know what
their plight was
that I like those kind of smaller side
stories that we try to tell to help
create the ambience of the world yeah
yeah me too
all right well we are going to take a
short break and then we'll be back and
we're going to talk about some of the
creatures that are hanging around in
paths fire so stick around thank the
three of you for spending some time yeah
thanks for having us thanks and we'll be
back in just a minute
I think that good story is pretty
universal finding ways to tell stories
that touch everybody stories about
conflict about love about friendship and
in our case it's in a fantastical
background with dragons in the end of
the world impending returning to Ilona
and crystal desert is something that we
have been planning for from the
beginning of the launch of Guild Wars 2
we're bringing back old gods why not
visit old places it was a pretty easy
decision to go back to Ilona to give
players a little dose of what they've
had before but expanded and to
perpetuate the story we've begun and to
address some of the major questions
players have had you do want to present
your players with mysteries you want
them to go on a journey with you and
exploring and answering these questions
they want to know what happened to the
gods they want to know what happened in
the last 250 years in the crystal desert
and most of all they want to know what
happens to their character it makes more
sense for us to go down the road less
traveled and find things that make
players question their actions as
opposed to simple answers our players
are smarter than that
it's a pivot players have been
contesting against elder dragons since
the game launched we have beaten two of
the other dragons of a possible 6 and as
a result of beating these two cosmic
scale entities we're starting to see the
repercussions it seems very much like we
shouldn't kill anymore elder dragons but
lo and behold here comes Balthazar the
crystal dragon Crockett auric is one of
the only viable targets left we've
received a vision from the eye of Jan
fear that showed Balthazar active in the
crystal desert apparently hunting
prophet ORAC I think the fact that we're
fighting a god this time around is
pretty heavy stuff and not just any God
mind you this is the God of War he is so
consumed by his purpose that kind of
character is exciting to write for
because he never gives up there's a
problem in front of me I'm gonna beat it
into submission and stomp over his
broken body and move on to the next
thing
but he's always moving forward so
players know what Balthazar as objective
is but we don't know his motivation we
have to make sure he doesn't make things
worse in an hour
a bad situation we have an enormous list
of interesting characters and it's
challenging to have them all involved at
once we knew what the players goal was
we knew what our antagonists goal was we
chose those characters who could help
the player achieve their objective in
terms of story arts we have RIT Locke he
makes his return to the team he is one
of the few party members that has been
in the crystal desert before RIT lot
gets to confront his past and the things
that happened here and for me that was a
great opportunity to connect with
players over this beloved character
there's also Kazmir who I find a very
interesting character exploring
kazimierz crisis of faith was enormous
fun as a writer and a narrative person
it's a really meaty issue to dig into
one of her gods has come back and is
walking the desert it's really hard to
ask her hey ya fight against someone
that you believed in all your life the
strength of your team is based on the
strength of your teammates and because
of that we have focused quite a bit on
the relationship with these characters
how are they going to solve the problems
that confront them while following you
going down that Laura rabbit hole can be
a total trip for me a lot of it is
relying on my teammates story is
absolutely a collaborative thing we talk
about what is this person's internal
struggle would it be believable if this
character used this weapon in this fight
and once we all agree then it can be
really awesome in that we all hit it at
different angles we ask art support we
ask the writers to support us we make
gameplay that supports that so we all
try and reinforce one vision for the
story path of fire is a more complex
story than we've told before once you
enter the desert you're not going to
want to leave and that's what I'm hoping
that genuine reaction is I really want
players to feel excited about being in
this new part of Tyria and finally I
want them to feel an even greater deeper
connection to these characters that
they're growing alongside them
you
I and welcome back to guild chat we are
back with you and clay and we're going
to talk about the creatures in path of
fire so I'll let you guys say hi and
talk about what you worked on for path
of fire a hugh Norfolk used to be PvP
designer creature designer nice I'm
Clayton Kisco I'm a game designer okay
well why don't we start with the big guy
and talk about the Hydra because wow
that was that was a thing yes people
don't really know hydro is you
understand hydro was one of those ones
where you know I joined the team and I
kind of came to join the team a little
later than most some people started from
the very beginning I kind of jumped on
about halfway jumped on the movie train
right and everyone was like you don't
worry we're gonna do Hydra it's gonna be
great I'm like okay cool we have all
these other you know armies and stuff
we're doing the forged the awakened even
the brando a little bit and they're like
yeah okay so we talk about Hydra and it
came down to like okay Hugh it's like
getting really late in here we need to
get this sucker started and I was like
okay well let's let's do we have time to
even commit to this you know we had you
know artists we had effects artists we
have my artists I mean we have like
creature artists animators I mean all
this stuff right this was really late in
the game you know ghosts of other
creatures already had art effects you
know design this guy literally had
nothing let's make a Hydra let's make a
Hydra from sweaty hammer and you know
sometimes I know if we have like the
base animations and rig from a creature
we can make it real fast right first
throw a skin maybe address some of the
you know some of the way he looks a
little bit yeah come up with some new
skills some new effects that's much
easier to do than going like alright we
got like you know nothing we had talked
we've talked about that on a Gil chat
before where we reuse rigs quite a lot
because it saves so much time and would
you guys rather a spend her time making
the most of the time would you rather
spend the time making a brand new rig or
using a rig we have so we can get more
content going exactly
but in this case yeah it was one of
those things where I was like we it get
a really got to the point where people
were like you know I don't think we can
do this you know we don't have time it's
dangerous because we've never made oh
you don't we haven't made this rig
before yeah it's got nothing right yeah
we're building this literally from
scratch but you know what you want with
the team we're like y'all right let's do
this you know what yeah we we need to
commit to this we need to start working
on this now let's just jump on this so I
got the whole team of you know animators
effects artists creature artists me and
a couple other guys like okay let's
start let's just slam on this thing as
fast as we can kind of drop everything
let's work on this well because it's the
crystal desert and hydras and Guild Wars
one that was a thing yes I mean even
previous living world episodes people
were expecting hydras right now the joke
was always that they had we we want to
make hydras and I went over to my
creature arson like okay you know what
kind of ideas have you had for Hydra and
he looks at me goes I'm not making a
three in a chicken and I was like excuse
me one two three in a chicken I want to
- say anything check out and then he
showed me a picture of the old gears one
hydrant
you know the stall juh sometimes blurs
your vision a little bit rose-colored
glasses for sure but nostalgic glasses
are powerful so I was like come on man
it's not that bad let's go and he opened
pink I'm like all right looks like three
a chicken maybe alright are you just
writing a raptor it's three in a raptor
come on man and and he's like I'm not
making that now what okay okay okay well
we don't got a lot of time what are you
making he's like humming Hydra I was
like good enough let's go this is where
you're on the team so he starts you know
he makes this thing and you know he kind
of conceptually told me kind of what he
was looking at right he one of the nice
look very serpent heads he wanted the
big hulking body and I was like okay
yeah let's do it I have no idea what
you're talking about but let's do what
all makeup skills for that I like I like
the words that babies are also great and
so I just kind of like my thinking
goggles on I was like serpent heads big
Barmes we can do it so we had some we
had a couple ideas of like he's now
punch you with his arms and then because
I'm thinking he's like the Hydra
standing on two legs but no he was
actually all four legs so it looked
hilarious when he
like I'm a buncha and so I talked to my
aunt yeah we need like it's punching
motions and something that's gonna be
sweet and then he's like like so we can
happen like his body on the ground he's
gonna like a little bit he'll use like
one arm and do like a one arm to kind of
hook yeah and then they said Hugh please
stop playing fighting games yeah exactly
and then well then it was like okay
we'll do it so they like just dubbed one
and I was like that looks hilarious so
let's not do that
I'm so sad we don't have these because
you were described was this when he was
like jumping through the air no there
was that was the other one okay so we
said you know okay what other skills we
looking at like we want like you know
he's got to do his meteor that's really
important yeah that was like the Hydra
thing it's okay and then we're like okay
we do like some kind of movement screen
as well just queuing or not perfectly
great job good job Matthew um so we're
like we want movement it's so we're like
okay well how do we we want him to be
able to move but we wanted to be a
little quickly because we're trying to
get that kind of combat feel we're
creatures aren't completely stationary
buck right of course that was the house
about a second yeah yeah so we're like
okay what if he like what if we like
jump through the air right cuz get these
big strong arms mid like grab the ground
and throw himself for and I'm like uh
that sounds ridiculous all right man
let's try it and so they looked like a
really bad Godzilla movie where like it
was just like a guy in a suit just like
and I was like please don't I don't want
to make that do that it's so we we went
away from that and we you know we went
with the - the run skill and I think
that turned out a lot better
it kind of puts his head down right it
was good right it actually somebody
brought up speaking of the head someone
brought up like the center had kind of
having these like spikes on the side
like these kind of like sites almost on
the side and that was an early design
for one of the skills was be using his
head to kind of knock players around uh
the problem being was that it looked
hilarious where he's swinging his middle
heads in the other heads like you got a
bro it's fine we're just back you're
watching and it just didn't it doesn't
feel right right but so so we get on all
together let's we fast-forward we get it
all together you know
and
he didn't have the head cut off mechanic
of the time right and so Wow
get him together we busted hump for a
month I got like two people like
literally like I had to drag them to the
meeting because they were like it's
asleep because they worked so hard right
and animations work great effects we're
coming and they looked really nice and I
was like all right here we go show it
off to the big head honchos oh that's
right sign it all off right I'm like oh
please don't be like this is garbage
please and you're so excited because
you've worked so hard for so long so
hard I'm excited I'm like all right guys
it was I gonna feel like a brand oh this
is the hydro with like aerodynamics like
brand new coat of paint look at this
he's got two seats in the back like I
was ready for speed six-speed automatic
and manual at the same whatever you want
it's on this rig it's gonna be sweet uh
and you know they they were like oh that
I'm like explain the skills they're
looking at them and like everybody's
good no I
alright you that's great they just kind
of got up and left and I was like did I
tell you the six-speed manual if that is
impressive
come on man I everybody's busy right
everybody right this is really close to
the end of thing and I was like this
beep busted hump to get this thing out
no one was like floored they were
excited it was happy it was done it was
more of a feeling of like thank you good
thank goodness this is ready yeah but I
was like that's not good be like 40
people when we end this show there
better be like 40 people outside that
door waiting yeah that's why I'm saying
it I was like okay here we go
I went back to my team I was like okay
like they loved it it was good but they
know they liked it but they didn't love
it what can we do to take it to the next
level what have what crazy thing can we
do and I was lucky because my the same
guy who's like I'm not making chickens
I'm not making four yet chickens he
looked at me he goes Hugh I mean I did
this thing you might be able to use it I
like made the the model have like
different meshes where the necks are
detachable like a Hydra would be and I
was like Jimmy yes I was like okay we
need something we need to calm hence we
need to cut the heads off that's that's
I dry in a nutshell right and they're
like okay cool Oh what what does that
look like
play I was like throw it together we'll
figure it out I don't care
so I started throwing it all together
and I was like hey we need like a Hydra
head to fall off and it should die in
the leg laughs dying is cool we could do
what the faxes I was dad but wouldn't it
cool if the head just like wobbled
around I was like yeah but I mean that
point we need a new rig too like one of
my enemies walked up to me like he won
the Nobel Prize
he's like Hugh we could just use the rig
from the worm head I was like yeah I was
like wait a minute you're on to
something it looks just like it we can
do it so we threw together he's a queue
it might not look good if we did it and
of course when that rig is scaled up to
like monstrous size yeah because it's
for the triple trouble worm so that's
like 0.1 scale to match the size well we
got to work and I was like yes it works
it looks cheap you're genius so I even
though that price of course like Nobel
yeah it's really it's really important
to highlight and this was over the
course of what months two months yeah it
was like two months just get this sucker
to where it is seen easily when the
community I love our community I just I
want more people to know like when
they're like just get hydrogen and it's
like talk to you about that process it's
like in the multi people like hard work
failed attempts iteration it takes a lot
of work to get to this point you guys
did such a great job and I hear the
story and I'm sorry that like you didn't
get the standing ovation with six speeds
but I remember when you unveiled this to
our team in like a bigger setting yeah
and seeing the heads chopped off like
that's a morale boost in the eleventh
hour and I know it's it's rare to like
do something new from scratch at that
point yeah but it just like if we were
floored we were absolutely like happy
and excited to see this thing come in so
spectacular it was kind of one of those
things to where I wanted I wanted you to
go in and see the hydro be like wow this
is cool he looks awesome his skills are
cool his meteor effect looks great but
then there's that moment when like and
it was great it was like so warming to
my team when we did the first beta event
right and people fought Hydra and they
were fighting it and they weren't even
paying attention right because they're
like I'm just
watch the skills and stuff and then all
of a sudden they look and they're like
wait a minute is he missing heads look
look around the crowd there's just the
head just littering by
what where did that come from and then
they watched again right in the way
holy crap his head fell off yeah you
know it was that moment of like what's
so gratifying yes it feels so good and
of course you know I'm gonna throw a
slight hint because someone told me like
all right you all right that's cool
you cut the heads off a Hydra what you
know his head usually on the highway
listen I watched Hercules
I'm sorry hey hey I just wondered ahead
grow and it's multiple I was like listen
man if I was gonna do that I'd be more
of him I wouldn't be working here I'd be
magician right if I could do that but it
may be a hidden thing somewhere that you
may find out in the future so keep your
eyes peeled to hydras in the future you
may see something I did ask that
question I'm sorry I do I wasn't gonna
ask it here because they don't wanna
like devalue everything I did but I was
gonna ask it so you don't know I
definitely tried yeah I definitely tried
but just keep your eyes peeled on hydras
and you may see some crazy stuff in the
future man all right so and this is I'm
gonna think of this story every time
someone is like why don't you just yeah
everything that comes after the word
just I'm like because this yeah this is
why this is one reason why definitely
okay so everything after man I've there
was some player he was live-streaming
and there was a twitch clip I don't know
if you saw it they really do that and
all of a sudden it's just screaming yeah
no don't bit screaming screaming fear
happiness or a little bit of both yes
well everything after this feels
anticlimactic but there are a lot of
other awesome creatures in there did I
mention the armies I mean we've got
three forged awakened and a little bit
of Brandon yep okay natural right but
naturals you don't really think about
its army but it technically is an army
right natural creatures like Sankar yeah
okay so you want to run through yeah so
I'll talk about forged obviously okay
forge these will most most know them
obviously having played the story the
first story in stance taking a person
hurt
they are Balthazar's kind of minions
here are suits of armor that he's kind
of infused the souls of you know his
guys for me it was awesome because it
was like I got to play with the human
rig which means I got all the animations
I get the idea ability to play a fire
that's always fun and then also you know
the fact that we kind of went and did
some unique things specifically one
being the surfer right that was one that
I was like super excited with I was like
yeah we can do humans we could do these
we could do that it's cool but like I
want like some big cool guy and so we're
like what if we had a guy like play with
like a static shock like some trash cans
on his feet and just floating around I
was like that sounds ridiculous but in a
better way than the flying Hydra of
course yes that bleep a fly by Deidre
but yes no and it was really cool I felt
it was really awesome to be able to go
and kind of break out of molds and do
some unique kind of acids again that was
a brand new brand new rig as well you
know being able to get this dude who's
like I don't know what he was doing his
feet flying to the desert it was kids
trash cans awesome static shock sounds
to you yeah and then of course we had I
don't want to being the living tank I
know some people sauce into the living
tank a little bit big gigantic monstrous
do with cannons on his arm looking like
this he's sweet right again and I know
kind of you know one of the things that
we really strove for for the creatures
team was creating with silhouettes for
the armies right when you see some guys
on like this guy here a human looking
guy right but then a big silhouette in
the distance you really know what that
is right see a big living take you see
the guy surfing around you can kind of
at a distance kind of tell how the
fights gonna play out just by looking at
the guys right let's go ahead and talk
about the oh wait you awakened yeah
they're they're my favorite I think
because I've worked with them so much
yeah yeah they're correct me if I'm
wrong anyway please basically djoko's
minions right his is his group of
creatures we've got the awakened
soldiers we have archers my favorite
part of the or rather the favorite
creature that I like of the awakened is
the Anubis yeah right he's great cuz he
walks and he's terrifying he'll jump on
you pounce on you you're stunting he's
just kind of whaling on you so whenever
I see
group or and usually it sparingly that
he isn't around there I always like
there's a level of terror that rises I'm
gonna plant Oh
but yeah and they they're there mummy
they have the mummies which are like the
lower of the hierarchy and they're kind
of more dumb and there's roast if yeah
yeah we went through a lot of iterations
of the tour used to be even more vicious
just slowing down constantly but we got
it we got that to a good point they feel
so much different than the forged and
the the the other creature branded right
you told me you're like you really is
nice that it breaks up yes something we
did we took a little bit like a
different direction that we've done in
the past we added a waking Brandon and
forced three main armies that just keep
things fresh and so when you're going
from zona zone map to map sector sector
you're getting a little bit of splash of
difference it's just really good yeah
and it's also really cool too in certain
zones when you see maybe an awakened
approach of fortunes yeah what happens
there right yeah yeah oh yeah yeah and
like just watching how that plays out is
really fun and it's it's it's
interesting cuz it feels in the sense of
why we call them internally armies they
actually feel like different parties
right they different armies go like each
other yeah oh I did not know this but I
am super interested to see but it is
it's good it's good to be able to
differentiate between those and to be
able to build something distinct and
varied and different armies that players
can easily differentiate between yeah it
helps build our world and flesh out the
scale of it you you get a sense of like
okay this is the awakened campus what
they're doing move a little bit now you
see like way ok this is the forge camp
this is what they're doing over here
like yeah both aesthetically in gameplay
exactly it completely like like you said
just by looking at whatever you can be
like oh I know I'm gonna fight some
forged here I know I'm gonna find some
awakened and then kind of in the middle
ground you don't you can kind of like oh
man this is I'm kind of in this
territory where I like I maybe fight
both at the same time maybe a Sancho joy
will come out of nowhere it's true
they'll try to hug it that idea but you
know yeah the thing that I've got the
wakin that really was funny to me was
like how we kind of played off this kind
of tar kind of thing right I think you
said it's called immortal iterations but
I think the funny thing was like death
skills being like when you kill and
awaken he kind of like erupts and just
oozes all the juices yeah I think that
was interesting right because the forks
don't do the whole death scale thing but
these guys every time you kill them and
it's kind of like explode your stuff
right and just kind of leave that kind
of trail behind and I think it's
interesting right it's an interesting
kind of dynamic on an entire army that's
kind of their thing yeah I thought we
did a really good job of just adding a
ton of things for players to explore and
find there's a lot of content oh yeah in
these maps I do want to touch on the
branded army a little bit because we've
got I mean we've been dealing with
branded quite a lot and did you just
take what we already had and move some
of them over or did you make some
changes and updates yes I think that was
it was interesting when we talked about
brand it because we already had a brand
an army right so of course you can't go
crazy because weird have them but you
can take it upon 11 that's there we go
so what we did is we looked at them and
we're like okay let's update some stuff
I mean it's kinda Sencha lis like the
brand that are kind of far away from
home right from interior but then this
is like this is their home this is where
is where Papa lives right so this you
gotta be you got to make sure you're
strong when you're my Papa I just want
here to describe everything yeah great
so but yeah so essentially what we did
is we like okay let's let's think about
like a power like the a lot of the guys
that you already fought and seen let's
take those up guys up a little bit
stronger let's make them give it a big
slightly twist to kind of what they
already did and that's kinda what we did
with them to kind of take them from ten
or eight stack it up to 11 so it moves
it up to a level for a lot of those guys
okay it's just I've been doing a lot of
shadow runs at my second account right
now trying to so really that just sounds
like a lot of punching to me it's
definitely a lot of like crystals and
explosions and oh cool yep that's all
right how about sand sharks
you mentioned sand sharks and I got
excited because they're there's so much
they're infuriating the most fun way
because they just sling you into the air
and
I have to laugh I mean I want to be
angry and I imagined sometime down the
road I will be but right now yes
hysterical so Sam sharks again you know
it's funny because this the idea or from
a lower sense kind of made sense kind of
what Matthew was talking about
previously on the show you know about
how these aquatic creatures kind of had
to live figure out how yeah but I
thought it was funny because I thought
about street sharks immediately when I
said as soon as I saw them I was like I
was gonna jostle I'm excited so it's
funny because we actually had this idea
a long time ago back in world world when
we'd release the Crystal desert map we
said you know what we need some sand
sharks cuz you know why because yes and
then they're like that's crazy
we would never we would never do yeah
just jostle we'll never do the wrong
meetings oh yeah you definitely be in
the meetings we're it but yeah I know so
it's like you can - that doesn't make
sense right all that stuff but then when
we talk about going to the crystal
desert and again were kind of was like
yeah these some of the quality Reacher's
kind of had to kind of dried out and
they had to live and I was like you know
what that sounds like to me sand sharks
that's what that sounds like to me I
know they're like well that's gonna be
weird it's gonna be toddler no no no no
it's gonna be jocelyn yeah it's gonna be
joseph and then what happens how is that
not a skill that they write that penis
should mission it should definitely be
it's like if you get enough around if
you for from around they're all
different colors they'll like come out
of the ground be like yo this is gonna
be sweet up from the 90s Joss
you're like the only other person there
was about I chose like tears tears on I
when we were all team we said Jocelyn at
least 5 million times but yeah so and
the thing that was really cool about wow
really cool about the the sand sharks
was you know the animation and kind of
the ideas behind again I kind of came on
a team late so I didn't get a chance to
really go in depth and kind of work they
were doing but when it came on the team
I saw their thing I was like this is
exactly what I want I wanted to be in
the sand I want to run around I wanted
to blow me into the sky I want I want
this guy to feel like a big menace giant
you know because when you think of a
shark when they're in their natural
habitat they're scary
yes they're very scary they're very fast
they're big right and I was like he is
his domain is everywhere yeah this is
this is I don't want to be in the sand
when it's an shark I'll go and watch
yeah now you're witness the one thing
that makes sense and we laugh but it
does work yeah and these guys are part
of what you were calling earlier the
natural army natural army and how did
how did you come up with the list of
okay these things are the natural army
this is what we have so it's funny
because one of them I think one of the
things we did right was we kind of went
into thinking about just desert in
general right like okay what makes sense
in there we went and made like as well
as taking the Gil Wars theme into a cave
right I think that's really important so
you'll see like stuff like San Lyons our
San lines but they're rock they're very
rock themes right like almost like you
know Serengeti but with a little twist
because there's a lot of rock and areas
around there and so I think that's
really important sand eels were another
one right when we thought about you know
we kind of want to give more silhouette
we wanted something small but we wanted
something that still kind of fit that
theme right and then of course my
favorite and also one of the greatest
things chances to Sarah for always
pushing to be the baddest the best that
we could be with making these guys
amazing the little puffs of cactus
delicious oh yeah even get there I don't
actually know I mean I I definitely know
when we were when I came on the team
that they were already existed but it
was one of those things where it was
like you need something that is
represents the desert so cacti were one
of the things so we'd like okay what can
we do with cactus that makes sense so we
actually talked about one of the the big
amount right leaving me right now the
big wooden guys treants tree nut guys
you know they we talk about making them
cactus right what if those guys with the
big clunky guys what cactus were like
yeah but like taggers don't look like
that but they don't look like the giant
tree looking guys that don't make sense
right so like okay well what if we had
like a kind of a more unique kind of
smaller rig so we thought okay what are
like something that we could do that's
kind of cute that we already have let's
try what do we did the quad
if it's a quaggan but from hell yeah
whatever loggin who was filled with
delicious delicious watermelon goodness
on the inside right and so it we decided
like let's try throwing it on this rig
and see what happens and we kind of got
this first it was super cutesy because
you know it's it was like based off the
quaggan and then we're like what if we
made it like a pug kind of ugly cute but
if we just made it like a derpy face
where his eyes are off be maybe look in
the wrong direction and what if we gave
him like teeth because that's just weird
and you know we kind of just did a bunch
of funny things and at the end of the
day kind of came up to the Toya and then
we said you know what come here go
through animations write the death
animation it was just using the quality
of death animation so it was always sad
and we're like what if we did something
crazy what if we what why don't we just
blew up right we're like yeah blow them
up yeah that's that's great it's so like
well we blew them up then where the hell
was incites gonna be like what's the
inside of a cactus we're like well
that's pretty no no one Rock it's kind
of yeah there's not a lot but if he was
like what if he was a fruit what if he
was delicious on the inside we could
just eat him all the time and so we did
it we tried we're like Lauren let's try
this and if we didn't it was hilarious
right and then we also gave the deaths
kill so they pop they like do like
conditions based on what color they are
sort of chill and I just noticed that
they were different fruit yeah yeah
again it was kinda like this flavor
thing right we just kind of just kind of
kept throwing ideas out there crazy
ideas and it kind of all came together
this is so - because like from an sure
people want to know about well like yeah
it writes its that cuz like it's so much
fun as a game designer to like you use
this like it's actually pretty simple
creature right there's not lots to it
but like kudos all the designers in the
overworld and that thing and ran with it
like I know Sarah did something really
special with it that I'm sure players
gonna be excited about like fine and
like yeah we just we went off on this
thing because it was just inspiring it
inspiring on its own it's one of those
things to work when you see it right
it's kind of like
you don't think about it when you're
thinking InDesign especially for our
kind of game you get caught up on the
lore and the seriousness and some of the
things you talk about and then once in a
while creatures team just drops a gem
like this and you're just like okay I'm
gonna do something hilarious right what
oh we can do with this and of course
shadows despair for doing the legendary
bounty events yeah we talk about those
of us yeah but we have Cherubini
animations cuz he was kind of a small
creature right what blow him up you
crazy stuff and then Sarah was like what
if he like he looks like a ball we just
rolled around oh my god I was like I was
like yeah we could do that it's pretty
simple
and then she's like what if it just kept
getting stronger and stronger and some
of you know people may know about some
skills in other games where people roll
out a lot and then it slowly kills your
entire team of happy monsters and you
cry as a child because that Jim was the
worst Jim in the entire world show us
you Sarah for replicating that in our
game
it was it's great I love it and it's
kind of a freedom we have right when
someone has an idea like that and then
we just run with it right it just works
and it's awesome
you also spits out when we were on the
beta event creatures teams and I sat on
the rock and waited we just wait did you
yeah and we're like somebody will unlock
this bounty yeah and we will see the
amazing happen it was awesome all right
so that's he's part of her natural army
I want to make sure we talk about like
the meerkats and the Lions because
people need to know Clayton
yes yeah the meerkats are great they're
they're one of our ambient creatures we
use them also with a heart in another
map which is really fun kind of like a
whack-a-mole yeah kind of gameplay going
on but yeah in terms of the warthog and
the meerkat a--they referring to the
Lion King shout out that we had so yeah
they're they're really cute creatures I
don't know that they do this like fun
little animation where they like they
they scurry and then they pop in a
little hole and there's nothing at oh
yeah
I think this I really do enjoy we we let
the animators run free sometimes uh-huh
you know I mean cuz they create some of
the graces I mean the mounts right the
raptor mount who does like the dog lay
and like the fun little yeah it's that's
really that was honestly a thing of love
right that was just labor of love for
our animator and you know he just did it
and he's like I don't know we'll use
this but like I was just prototyping
some stuff and this is really cool and
then it just became Michael that is its
that's shadow animators are just
absolutely very much so meerkats are
just an awesome creature and they are so
glad that we added it and we're not just
relying on like a rabbit well that's
like we were talking about before what
makes sense for the area right yeah well
I saw somebody even in chat like before
we started today say we just had the
stress test a little while ago and
somebody was asking who did I saw the
lion in the warthog in the meerkat and I
need to know who yeah yeah yeah that was
me Sarah also pushed me to do that she
can't gave me the green light on that
one it's great I mean as it games that
like I played our game I played other
homos and just little tensions to like
to detail these little things nuggets
that you can go with my necks or just
fun exactly like it means it means a lot
to me like I love seeing that stuff so
it was really fun to create this for our
fans and I've said this before on
previous stuff we've we've had there are
more out there so I'm excited to see
what people find alright you'd mentioned
boss bounties and there's not just one
giant Choya spitting out lots and lots
of little troy but you just worked on
the boss families and the whole like
build a boss thing yeah you want to talk
about that
of course you created well you you
worked on it I worked on yeah I work
with it yeah so yeah I mean the big
thing was was you know we wanted to come
up with a system that kept creatures and
experienced events kind of fresh yeah
right they're always a little different
always a little different because you
know running the same creatures and
stuff like that it can get a little
monotonous but I mean the skills are
always fun and it's always a fun
engaging thing obviously sometimes
they'll do things to you you've never
knew which is great and also awful
sometimes but you know what we wanted to
create a system that kind of gave us a
little more control to do some
things right it's that's when the you
know the bounty system and the build of
our system kind of came to be you know
it's very simple you go up to a board
you take it it kind of spawns dude right
and the dude can have sometimes fun and
awful little buffs on themselves that
can do some really interesting things
right and so it came to be is like you
know what okay what do we we need a
system that can you know keep these
features fresh keep these keep this
bosses fresh right and then it was okay
let's make it player owned right and
that's what the kind of the bounty
system kind of got smashed together with
this right a man it was really really
interesting kind of how it all came to
be what I want to talk about the bounty
system a little bit yeah yeah so the
bounty system is really great I know
there's some comments earlier is asking
about world bosses and stuff I mean
these guys aren't just any dudes these
are definitely champions that you're
going out it's it's just a fun feeling
you go to this like main hub community
you pick a bounty and you all mount up
on various different mounts that we have
and y'all just like Caravan over there
to this like spot where this bounty is
just like wreaking havoc and then y'all
just hop off engage him and then attack
them I think the key part about what you
had mentioned is that like it keeps
things fresh and there's like game in
game design and development we can rely
on randomness and that goes so far
there's also you know too much random
can be badly which we kind of ran into
with yeah but like we've made we've put
systems and hooks in place to allow us
to kind of rein in how much randomness
there is exactly I felt like we really
landed on a great spot like a spot that
feels like he's this guy that I played
yesterday like I fought he's gonna have
different skills and it's still gonna be
balanced I feel really unique and
different at the same time that's all we
know that really well and we as like
designers of the bosses also try to
pepper in unique skills to these
specific creatures right like hiding it
for example you know we'll have his
Highness skills but we'll put some some
new things because maybe he's a champion
or legendary yeah and on top of that we
have to build a boss which is random
selection like yeah crazy magic gone
wild inspired skills yeah it's all based
on is the concept look based on like ley
line energy and kind of like empowering
some of these creatures that are kind of
a Maki and you know in the Oasis and in
you know the areas do you have a
favorable of course
I mean it's uh it's funny because I have
a couple that I really like one I really
like is right now when you're seeing on
the screen
spinning lasers i okay this won't bugs
me not like a bad way but it's like when
I see the laces like crap yeah like uh
cuz it's like I just gotta get out of
the way with these things yeah I think
that one's really fun I think there's a
couple others that I really really like
stop go yeah okay
that's my favorite stop goes really good
I really like that one cuz it's it just
changes up the gameplay and as long as
you're paying attention it's not really
that big of a deal but it's kind of like
when the boss is doing some interesting
things and then you're also trying to
pay attention it can get a little
chaotic but it's kind of a fun game that
you play it's a little mini game you
play while you bury your kid you play
red light green light yeah yeah yeah so
it's basically like yeah you have to
stop moving basically when he has like
the red light on and green light you
have to move or you start to kind of
damage that's super fun cuz it just
changes the way our combat come to you
we're just we don't do that often in our
fights so it's really cool yeah
legend just so the champions get two of
the buffs legendaries get three of the
buffs but man let me tell you some of
the times yeah sometimes we'll play
creatures I'm like that was great it was
awesome man that was like super easy and
then sometimes we'll fight the same guy
which said need to go back man that was
really challenging hard but it was fun
still like I think that was one of the
big things we get up we actually canned
a couple of the skills because they were
just at the end of the day that when we
played him it was more about call most
like a frustration instead of fun and so
but the thing is that's nice is that it
doesn't ruin the entire system you just
cut it out throw another one in and Zed
see right and we can always add more
like this the system's really flexible
and robust I love it I think it's it's a
solid addition to all the other stuff
that we have going on here yep
I think it's a good point is it's just
kind of a nice addition yeah to the hard
draw the things that are in the game
mouths its story and lore and open world
and offense it's just kind of a nice
little addition that if you're if you
want to get with a couple your buddies
and it'll run some champions take one of
these guys off go fight and have some
fun yeah I imagine there's gonna be a
lot of like command chains
two weeks I know we're almost there you
guys crazy you guys really really the
whole path fire team has done an
incredible job getting all of this stuff
in there so I know you guys are really
excited for everybody to get in there
and start can't wait
running through it alright I have we're
getting pretty late but I do have one
more thing that I want to talk about
that you guys worked on we talked about
hearts earlier and we were talking about
mounts and how to get those and I wanted
to talk about mount camps versus hearts
and how the design of those work
differently
I'll make this I'll wrap this up really
yeah we'll just give a little preview
yeah absolutely so like the key thing
about mounts that we found out really
early on is that they're an engage
mechanic
besides the exploratory mechanic and so
and all of our hearts really revolve
around some type of combat mostly right
so when we got to making camp
specifically designed to rent a mount
and do activities around it was a
process of like iterative and like
feedback design we got to the point were
like okay it's really just fun to never
get off the mount and just run around so
for instance when you're in the Raptor
camp Sara did a really great job just
like Raptors like bugs that's what we
came up with and so the running around
jumping over canyon it's like collecting
bugs it's so much fun we even have like
and a little bit like of like the races
of just knowing how to like tiers and if
the other environment artist did a good
job of creating these these camp spaces
that really highlight flow for the mouse
just jump over move up down and get
these things that we kind of put out
front of player yeah it's all about
movement it's all about like using their
their movement skills and trying to not
get them off the mount as much as
possible if they do give them a mount
nearby that they got if they don't home
it's just a completely different way to
think yeah right exactly so there was
like some some hurdles that we had to
get over but I think we landed really
well even I like even the little ambient
rewards you were talking about the
Raptors like bugs so we're gonna run
around and these little hearts and I
made my I made my mount happy yeah yes
yeah and it's not even it's just pure
playing for fun which oh hey it turns
out that's why we have games yeah yeah
so yeah even on the that tiny little
scale it doesn't have to be you know
huge boss bounty right all the way down
to these tiny little fun things right
has been implemented well what I've
everything that we've seen and
everything that you guys are gonna see
very very soon it's so hard for me to
not want to just vomit out about this
boiler this is like our entire life is
we want to tell you guys everything yeah
we're almost there we're almost there
you guys extrude oh all right you guys
are almost there - in just over two
weeks we are all going to be playing
pacifier and everything you guys have
done gets to show off all right I know
you guys have a lot of wrap-up work to
do so I will let you back to work and
thank you guys for hanging out with us
thank you both for spending some time
having us on yeah yeah and we will see
you in-game very very soon bye
thanks guys

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