Designing Filmic Games: Paul O'Connor And The Bourne Conspiracy
March 14, 2008 Page 6 of 8
I think that's a common experience. When looking at the Bourne in your game, that's obviously not Matt Damon.
PO: This is not Matt Damon. This is not the Damon you're looking for.
In a certain sense, I'm sure you can argue it multiple ways. The books aren't Matt Damon. They're the original character.
PO: This is definitely different from the movie character as well. We optimistically hope that we're starting a franchise here, and Mr. Damon's given any number of signals that he's done with Bourne.
They may be able to pay him enough to come back for a fourth picture, but at this point... we're hoping to do several of these games going forward, and it does make sense for us to have our own identity in that main character. But you know, a lot of those decisions are made upstream from us.
Bourne could become like Bond, go indefinitely.
Well, I know in the last script, the original third act is a little different, to set up another character who was going to pop out of the franchise. The producers are thinking about it too. It's the guy on the rooftops.
MS: At the very end.
PO: Yeah. He had a much larger role in the original script.
You know what movie game I really
liked that I thought delivered a movielike experience that was actually
good? It was King Kong. That was a really good game.
MS: That was one of the games that tried no-HUD.
PO: I think it was a little too clever in that regard.
I turned the HUD on, actually. I turned the ammo HUD on. I thought that was really silly, instead of pressing the button to tell yourself how many bullets you have. "Five bullets left!"
PO: That's maybe the exception that proves the rule. I thought that was a cinematic game, and I thought it did depart from the story in really interesting ways, and there was a lot to like about it. But I thought they took the HUD away just to take the HUD away. I didn't see where...
At least it was an option that you could turn back on. I always wanted it on.
PO: But it was a conceit. I think it was a boardroom choice. I don't think it was a game design choice. I think it was, "It won't look like a movie. Take that away."
I don't have any insight to the development of the game, but I bet you a dollar that's what happened. We played that quite a lot, because I was on the review board for the AIAS and needed that for the story award. Because it did take some steps into a new space.
CN: I thought it was really...
I really did like it from a story perspective.
[Playing Bourne while talking.]
And your health can come back, as long as you get to a safe spot.
PO: Yeah, to catch a breather. Kind of stealing a Call of Duty trick there. In the original design, we were thinking more in terms of open worlds and persistent wounds for Bourne, but it slowed the pace too much.
You'd be hunting around for medical packs. It made the level design a little easier, because you'd have reasons to go to all the nooks and crannies, but it didn't feel right.
Page 6 of 8