1997-1998 were some of the worst years of my life.
I weighed 220lbs and lived in a place I really didn't care for (Foster City, California).
Here's a horrific video of what I looked like back in the day:
Pretty bad/sad, ya know?
Alot of what was making me so unhappy was the stress of my job. I had just come off the massive high of Twisted Metal 2 and had no freaking clue how I would ever follow it up. Granted, it wasn't just me who made that game. There was a whole team of mega talented folks who made the game, not to mention we had a huge help from Lady Luck cause, to this day, none of us really know WHY that game turned out so well. It just kinda...did.
But at 26 years old, I had an over inflated sense of my importance. Not to belittle my contributions, cause they were significant. But it was not all me. Not by a looong shot.
But I put the pressure on myself to follow it up with another big hit. Which was made triply tough given the fact that I was producing AND directing/designing the new title. What a mistake that turned out to be! Producing always took a back seat to design...and since I made the final calls on the team, I over designed the game when I should have been building the team and making sure the team was happy and functional. Instead of searching for balance, I went in search of the perfect game design doc and thought, once we had that, all would be well.....HA!
Before production even began, we went thru three full design documents, each one consisting of well over 150 pages and at least $100,000 of concept art!
Over the next few days, I will update this entry to share some of the amazing concept art from the game we were working on during this time. It was called DARK GUNS and was to be a top down Raiden like shooter that had tons of personality, felt like Mad Magazine meets R Crumb, and was going to capture the growing casual market on the PS1 (Frogger had just shipped and done over a million units...I assumed its success meant a new audience was buying PS software that wanted simple games...I failed to take into account the value of nostalgia and a world famous brand!)....
Will also try to conclude with a gameplay video if I can get the game running and capture good enough footage right off my tv (no way to import it here at home)...
Which makes me wish PSN would do a feature on Qore soon dealing with cancelled first party Sony games. Would be so cool to let the public see a bunch of the stuff- some of it pretty far along- that never made it out the door.
Ok, well it's late...lemme just start with a cover...will put up more over the weekend: