Gamasutra is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Gamesspacer
Postmortem: Pseudo Interactive's Cel Damage
View All     RSS
March 2, 2021
arrowPress Releases
March 2, 2021
Games Press
View All     RSS







If you enjoy reading this site, you might also want to check out these UBM Tech sites:


 

Postmortem: Pseudo Interactive's Cel Damage


February 27, 2002 Article Start Page 1 of 3 Next
 

The story behind Cel Damage is long, winding, and harrowing, but ultimately uplifting. And because Cel Damage is our first published title, its story is also the story of our company, Pseudo Interactive. Based in Toronto, we began work on the technological core of the game four years ago. A demo of our driving-combat physics engine at the Game Developers Conference in 1997, PI's first year of operations, received a warm reception. Shortly thereafter, PI struck up a relationship with Microsoft's Entertainment Business Unit (EBU). Over PI's first two years, we started up and killed a few projects. However, with the coming of Xbox, we found a proper niche for our emerging technology.

The physics engine that PI president and technology director David Wu was developing lent itself well to console applications. EBU recognized this, and an early alliance was formed between PI and the embryonic Xbox team. A high-profile Microsoft producer came to PI with a vision of where PI needed to take its game technology, and a new project was born. At that time, the project was called Cartoon Mayhem and was primarily a car-based racing game with ancillary gag and weapon features. As we struggled with the demands of Microsoft's vision for IP development, rendering, and weapon effects, we realized that the game engine, which was a patchwork of two years' worth of diverging demands and evolution, would need a complete overhaul.

For better or for worse, we undertook that overhaul. So it was that just as we were getting into Cartoon Mayhem's development, our engine, and our ability to iterate content in playable builds, went down for over eight months. This was a crucial time for Xbox and its first-party developers. Microsoft was allocating its resources to those teams with proven track records and those showing steady progress. We were obviously lacking in both areas. Microsoft cut PI, along with our Xbox title, at the end of 2000. Though this was a disheartening development for us, by this time we had the game engine back up and running, and we were suddenly able to produce good demo levels. It wasn't long before we drew interest from several other publishers.

We had a quickly evolving technology and a ton of assets ready to go. The demos we put together enabled us to land a new publishing deal with Electronic Arts. Switching publishers allowed us to prepare some great new material, including an internally developed IP, extra gameplay features, a new renderer, and a new title: Cel Damage. We realized we were going to make the Xbox launch, and we were going to do it with our own property and the backing of the world's largest third-party publisher. These three facts alone made all the work of the previous several years worthwhile.


Article Start Page 1 of 3 Next

Related Jobs

Iridium Studios
Iridium Studios — Los Angeles, California, United States
[03.01.21]

Technical Animator
Bit Fry Game Studios
Bit Fry Game Studios — Portsmouth, New Hampshire, United States
[03.01.21]

Technical Animator
Bit Fry Game Studios
Bit Fry Game Studios — Portsmouth, New Hampshire, United States
[03.01.21]

Senior Technical Artist
Jackbox Games, Inc.
Jackbox Games, Inc. — Chicago, Illinois, United States
[03.01.21]

International Games Lead





Loading Comments

loader image