Friday, 29 April 2011

Gamefreakblog visits Gamecity nights: Oddworld special event.

Hey guys, this is just a quick post really. I'm just trying to find something to do while the royal wedding is happening. After you have had several cups of tea, a breakfast bap and a wank there's nothing else to do than watch the fucking thing, so i'm going to do a wee write up about Gamecity nights, the brilliant gaming even held in Nottingham. It's held regularly, but this is the first one that I attended, pretty shocking really as I live 10 minutes down the road, but i'll become a regular attendee if the quality is as high as it was last night.

There were some independent developers showing off their wares, which looked pretty cool and should be released on the Xbox live Indy games channel this year. However, the real reason I attended was to find out more details on what's happening with the Oddworld franchise.

First up was an interview with Stewart Gilray, managing director of Just add water, devs of the new Oddworld remakes. He gave us an insight into his career, the perils and pitfalls of game development and some words of advice for budding developers out there. The advice was essentially be passionate, work your socks off and don't spend your time making a 1,000,000 polygon model of Lara Croft's tits for your CV.

Next up was a video conference call with Oddworld's god, Lorne Lanning, the creator of everything Oddworld. He was funny, intelligent and devilishly handsome, kind of like a cross between Jesus and David Ginola. He told us about creating the games, his visions of where gaming is going, with prods to him embracing the social media aspects of gaming. I have some footage that I took, so i'll pop it up onto the Gamefreakblog Youtube channel for you to digest. He was very entertaining, and worth going just to hear his thoughts.

Stewart from JAW took to the stage again, and detailed what was in store for PS3 Oddworld fans this year. Firstly, the HD remake of Strangers Wrath has been postponed for a few months. No biggy, as it looks amazing. Stewart showed us some of the updated character models from the game and they looked brilliant. Stranger in the first game was composed from around 3,000 polys on the Xbox, this time he's around 16,ooo. This was also the same for the various enemies and creatures in the game. It has Playstation move support, and as if to one-up that little exciting piece he also confirmed that Stranger will have Youtube support too, so you can upload gameplay direct to more capture cards for you. Stewart also confirmed, thanks to a slip up from Lorne, that they are also working on an HD remake of Abe's Oddysee! YIPPEE! Munch's oddysee is also on the way, and a boxed set, called Oddbox, will be released later this year, featuring the first two Oddworld games, Munch's Oddysee and Stranger's Wrath, which is great for fans of the series. They are also looking at "The hand of Odd", a game that was cancelled around the time of Munch's oddysee. It would be wrong to call it an RTS, but it's not a game like Oddworld. Hopefully more details will be released soon, and I was privileged that Stewart showed me the actual original documents from Lorne Lanning that detailed the game and all the other aspects of Oddworld. It was fucking huge, bigger than a telephone book and infinately more cool!

I bailed from the event after this, as competitions and stuff like that aren't really my thing, but it was a great event. I have a teeth-gnashing bit of secret information that I managed to piece together from chatting to all and sundry at the event, being the nice guy I am however i'm not going to mention it. I want to shout it from the rooftops, as it's big. It was going to be announced last night, but because of what's happening with the Playstation network the news had to be called "Feature X". After going all out like an ugly version of Jason Bourne I know what feature "X" is, and it's massive news for the Playstation just wait. Anyway, i'll talk about this later, i'm off to fix my sauna.

If you can get to any future Gamecity nights events i'd recommend that you do so. Next month there is a visit from TT games Jonathan Smith where he will talk about all things Lego, and the UK's first look at the fantastic NES-like homage to GTA, Retro city Rampage.

I'll see you all there!

(and just because I love you so much, here's a short clip of Lorne Lanning doing some impersonations of the characters from the Oddworld games)

Pop along here to visit the website of Just add Water.

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