Postmortem: Poptop Software's Tropico  by Brent Smith[10.10.01]
Poptop Software's latest project is Tropico, a political game set in an exotic locale. The creators of Railroad Tycoon 2 discuss what went wrong, what went right, and the obstacles they faced in putting the game together, including tools, character development, design, and localization challenges.
Mobile Game Postmortem: Ngame's Chop Suey Kung Fu   by Matt Kelland[09.17.01]
When Ngame moved into the WAP market they concentrated on big, innovative multi-player titles like Alien Fish Exchange, Merchant Princes, and DataClash. However, it was immediately apparent that, successful as these titles were, they were almost too big for a mobile phone. After talking with carriers about what they wanted, Ngame realised that we were going to need a suite of smaller titles to bulk up their portfolio. The entire spec for Chop Suey Kung Fu was written in half an hour, on less than one side of letter paper. It was multi-player. It was a popular genre. And lastly, it was really, really easy for the player to understand. This punched every carrier’s buttons. The marketing guys loved it. Chop Suey Kung Fu has become one of Ngame’s biggest successes, frequently outperforming the much bigger games, and is now one of the world’s most popular wireless games.
Postmortem: Lionhead Studios' Black & White2 by Peter Molyneux[06.13.01] Black & Whiteis the game Peter Molyneux always wanted to make. From the days of Populous, the idea of controlling and influencing people in an entire world fascinated him. Creating the world for this game and the AI behind it became a Herculean task—the team regularly went home as dawn broke, and weekends became something other people did. This Postmortem reveals the trials and tribulations Lionhead Studios faced in their three-year quest to create Black & White.
Design, Postmortem, Production
Postmortem: Monolith's No One Lives Forever6 by Craig Hubbard[06.08.01]
After their previous title Shogo fell prey to the perils of wild optimism and unchecked ambition, Monolith decided to make a game that put presentation ahead of innovation. No One Live Forever is a comparatively humble game that got all the details right rather than an ambitious one that fell short in numerous areas. Here, Craig Hubbard tells how the experiences of NOLF have led to significant improvements in Monolith's scheduling, preplanning, team structure, and development process.
Postmortem: Cutler Creative's Last Call  by John Cutler[05.11.01]
Cutler Creative was officially born with a trip to Sears, credit card in hand, to buy a computer. With this purchase John Cutler began to contemplate how he would produce a demo of the game. At the time he had absolutely no experience in multimedia production or game design. But one question persisted: "Why can't people learn to bartend on a computer?" Simon & Schuster had recently published Deer Avenger -- a spoof of the popular Deer Hunter franchise. Last Callfit into SSI's strategy, and they agreed to publish the game for Christmas.
Baldur's Gate II: The Anatomy of a Sequel  by Ray Muzyka[05.02.01]
Just over two years ago Baldur's Gate was released. It was the culmination of nearly 90 man-years of work by a number of inexperienced, but very talented and creative individuals at BioWare, who had only one previous title (Shattered Steel) to their credit. After the resounding success of Baldur's Gate, BioWare began the development of Baldur's Gate II and set out to prove the magic of Baldur's Gate could not only be repeated, but that a great game could be made even better. In this article, Dr. Ray Muzyka discusses some of the strategies his team employed during the development of Baldur's Gate II.
Postmortem: Micro Forte' s Fallout Tactics  by tony oakden[04.20.01]
In May 1999 an isometric scrolling shooter called Chimera was pitched to Interplay Productions. Interplay was impressed with the quality of the demo, but was not interested in the game itself. However, Interplay's 14 Degrees East studio saw enough potential in the demo and in particularly the Phoenix engine to propose the idea of doing a tactical combat game set in Black Isle's postapocalyptic Fallout world. The new game would continue with the themes explored in earlier Fallout games but with an emphasis on tactical-style combat rather than RPG gameplay.
Postmortem: Minds Eye's Sheep  by andrew evans[04.13.01]
Make a simple, addictive, old-school game, based on herding. To this add the notion that, although the graphics were to be of light, fluffy animals, the situations would be where you find humans behaving in the dumbest, sheep-like manner. Additionally, it would be a sprite-based, god's-eye-view game that could be played on a 486 PC with a 2MB 2D graphics card. Minds Eye had a concept that would sell to both sexes, be played by all ages, and be banned in no countries. Had they found the gaming Holy Grail? Andrew Evans recounts the trials and tribulations the Sheep team faced to bring this game to the shelves.