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You guys are just hitting. I would imagine you're not like, "Well, see ya next time!" You're ready to go; you'd like to get back and probably hit the ground running.
MM: Yeah. Once we've wrapped this up, we'll be working on downloadable content. We want to continue the story. Maybe, in my own conceptual mind, it's bridging between season one and what will hopefully be season two -- if the audience wants more. So we'd very much like to continue because we open a lot of doors to the fiction.
Yes, the gamer gets to a satisfactory endpoint, and, yes, there is a conclusion to Alan Wake as a story; but it's season one. It would be cool to do the specials, like Battlestar Galactica, after the season's complete, and to tell people more.
So downloadable content would be cool; I'm really looking forward to doing that. If nothing else, we'll get to do bite-sized projects. For a team that's worked on a very long project, it'll be nice to have something -- "Well, we'll start now and then wrap it up here." It'll be a very different scale, if you will.
I've talked to people who like to use DLC as a place to experiment, either with letting different people take creative direction who didn't have that opportunity on the main project, or also to experiment with ideas that they weren't sure would sustain for a whole game.
MM: Yeah. I think DLC opens up that opportunity. You almost want to do... Okay, Portal's an unfair comparison, but you could do prototypes that aren't necessarily in the core of what the original IP was and maybe even do spin-offs and stuff like that; see what works and take a different tone. I don't know.
I don't think we're going to be that far away from... You get those [episodes like] the musical episode of Buffy. (Laughs) Doing something that's kind of, while within the fiction or within the context, but a but wackier. I think it's a cool avenue, and also, as a gamer, I like the fact that I'm getting offered downloadable content to add to games I like. Some of it is great; some of it's not. But, on the other hand, I think it's cool. Just the very idea: press a button, and you get more.
And I think it's baby steps into a direction where digital distribution goes more and more into the mainstream and gamers and the audience out there learn to buy games directly, which is usually good for developers -- as a rule of thumb anyway.
I also think it's interesting that you've been talking in television metaphors -- and I know you use a television metaphor for the structure of the narrative of the game -- but we're talking about potentially episodic content as well, so it's moving into an almost over-the-air scenario in a way.
MM: Yeah, I think there's loads of interesting things such as episodic [structure] or, as you said, kind of prototyping and trying out new things. Those are definitely interesting things that are happening out there. The production realities for a lot of these things, though, at least I don't see the benefits.
You hear the talk of, "Well, you just create one and a new bite-size," but, really, if you're going to do -- at least for a larger game, like a AAA game like us -- if you're going to be doing motion capture, voice-over acting, face and motion capture, stunts... To do that, you're not gonna do those in bite-sized bits. What you want to do is you want to go in there and shoot for three or four days; you don't want to go in there and shoot for half a day.
For example, some of out facial stuff was done in Phoenix. Some of stunts were done in New York and then Sweden; and voiceover in New York, as well. Those are not things that you want to start and maybe do one day sessions of around the world.
What you want to do is you want to go in there; you want to have the actors trained up. You want everybody to be familiar with the script, and you probably want to bag it in a week as opposed to going back every six weeks or twelve weeks.