May 2004


Game Informer interviews Shane Kim

Story 104 reported by Max on
Saturday, 29th May 2004 at 7·49 p.m. BST

Rick has pointed out that the latest issue of Game Informer features an interview with Ed Fries’s replacement, Shane Kim. The interviewer addresses Microsoft Game Studios’ decision to drop Oddworld and Psychonauts from its line‐up:

GI: In the past, Microsoft as a first‐party Xbox publisher really tried to hit a lot of the demographics—​everything from Halo on one end to Kung Fu Chaos on the other. Recently, a few somewhat high‐profile products, like Psychonauts and Oddworld’s Stranger, have been shelved. Is this part of a strategy to focus your development dollars on fewer titles?

SK: When we launched the Xbox, we were obviously the new kids on the block. Sony and Nintendo were established. So, we wanted to make sure we provided a reasonable breadth of content for customers who bought Xbox initailly—​because we were still trying to convince third parties to support us. We are enjoying great third party support now, so there is a tremendous variety of titles available for our customers. Now, as the first party, Microsoft Game Studios, we can really focus now on delivering the type of games and experiences that will hopefully be very unique to our platform. Those kinds of games are becoming bigger, more ambitious, more risky, and more expensive to make. So, we are focusing on the teams and the ideas and the titles that we believe can fulfill that mission. We have to be very diligent about where we’re going to place our bets.

GI: In the case of Psychonauts or the Oddworld project, were they just not working out, or did you feel like they were getting too expensive?

SK: We have great respect for the creators of both of those games. From a platform perspective, I hope their games are very successful on Xbox. But, when it comes to Microsoft Game Studios, we need to make some decisions about trying to focus on a smaller set of games and teams that we believe can have a significant impact. That leaves us some very difficult decisions. And, unfortunately, it’s not a quality issue because those are both very, very talented developers.

Meanwhile, Abe Babe has returned from E3 2004, and although Oddworld Inhabitants didn’t have a booth, she has penned a three‐page article on her visit (Page 1, Page 2, Page 3), including mention of Darkwatch, the twisted Gothic Western vampire FPS by Sammy Studios, and co‐founders and ex‐Inhabitants Farzad Varahramyan and Paul O’Connor.

Sources: Rick

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Special OddChat

Story 103 reported by Xav on
Saturday, 22nd May 2004 at 9·22 a.m. CEST

Sorry, I’m 2 days late. Alf’s Assistant posted a message on the forums, telling us that a special chat was planned.

Unfortunately the chat is already done, BUT oddguy posted a transcript Alf, Alf’s Assistant and Abe Babe) hinted they may come back, so stay tuned on OddChat!

Sources: Alf’s Assistant

Discuss on the Oddworld Forums


Onimusha 3 takes 3D Award

Story 102 reported by Max on
Wednesday, 12th May 2004 at 6·47 p.m. BST

Hollywood Reporter has published an article on videogames becoming a much more staple electronic entertainment in society, on par with movies and music. Lorne Lanning gets a few words in, mentioning both Oddworld and its fanbase, just days after his session discussing game development’s influence on film and television production at this year’s 3D Festival.

Also speaking in the annual Copenhagen festival was ex‐Inhabitant Scott Easley, who talked on the making of the Medal of Honour series.

Unfortunately, Oddworld did not win the Game Cinematics prize in this year’s 3D Awards. The title instead goes to Onimusha 3 by ROBOT Communications.



Oddworld in EXPOSÉ 2

Story 101 reported by Xav on
Sunday, 2nd May 2004 at 2·25 p.m. CEST

Some news from Exposé 2:

Several Oddworld pictures are already planned to be in the book, they are present on the Page Gallery: page 81, page 85 and page 148.

Intresting facts: An Oddworld picture was nominated for the Character In Action 3D Awards and Lorne Lanning is a member of the Advisory Committee and Jury (with a nice quote from him at this page).

Disscuss it on the forums!

By the way, an intresting PDF is available on the 3D Festival site.

Discuss on the Oddworld Forums


Official site updates, May 2004

Story 100 reported by Xav on
Sunday, 2nd May 2004 at 9·35 a.m. CEST

Great updates this month on the official site: a new Dear Alf, a new inhabitant interview: Rajeev Nattam—​Character Artist, and a new feature: Alf’s Inhabitants Anonymous!

Disscuss it on the forums!

Discuss on the Oddworld Forums

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