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marigul

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Posts posted by marigul


  1. 7 hours ago, BuddyBuddies said:

    Wow! Nice interview, I believe the design documents for Mind Ripper I purchased from Faran many years ago.  It was the design documents and game proposal about an inch thick of material. I no longer have them and believe I sold them with Highlander 2 and 3, Oswald, AC/DC and a bunch of others. There is a slim chance that Willard might still have or might have a copy of Mind Ripper, I’ll check.  One cool thing I had that I sold was a Baldie statue or figurine thing that I think was used to make Baldies or something. Thanks for sharing the interview , Faran is a really cool dude.   
       Also really sad to hear of Lance Lewis passing away. While listening to the interview I remember it was Lance who I’m sure confirmed Highlander 2 and 3 were both completed and no ever released  ,in fact Jason Smith at one time had a Highlander 2 cd but it was unreadable. The more I dig back into the Jaguar scene the more I’m remembering. Fun stuff. 

    I figured someone here must have the Mindripper stuff...I thought I had digital copies of stuff...but I was wrong :(

    • Like 1

  2. 4 hours ago, Sauron said:

    That pretty much sums up the entirety of the Jaguar. Such a shame, too...the Jag had some powerful hardware that could've been exploited well in the right hands. It really needed a AAA publisher/developer to coax something good out of it. Instead, the majority of the development groups were two guys in a garage, or existing games being ported by one person. 

     

    The "upside" is that Jag alumni have gone onto bigger and better stuff like foundations of the playstation launch and infrastructure, call of duty, apex legends, rebellion has become a top tier company...I am sure there is some other stuff I am forgetting...but at the end of the day it was like video game college before such a thing existed.

    • Like 3

  3. I'm late to the party but here are my 2 cents...

     

    Tal was an Atari Jag Superfan, I think that is why he got the job and I think he may have been maybe 21 at the time...super nice guy and a non bs'r.

    MK3 was on a long list of stuff atari bought the rights too...I think I was working on the bulk of these projects at 1 time or another. I think we licensed MK from acclaim and then had to renegotiate with midway for the full rights, then ultimate came out and we wanted that...we went to Probe because they had MK experience, but dragged their feet, honestly cant recall how far it got...but my guess "playable" because they wanted the milestones paid. There probably was some talk about too many "fighting games", but that conversation shifted daily

     

    Yes many of the old school game devs were grade A bs'rs...but honestly that was pretty much only way to get sh*t got done---over promise and under-deliver and hope everything works out enough to get paid.

    • Like 3

  4. It's fun to wander around the beta builds but there was no way a tiny development team was going to successfully put together anything like the scope they were talking about.

     

    It would taken a major studio a long time and a lot of money to pull that game off, and it likely would've needed more powerful hardware to boot.

    One of the "advantages" of working at atari at that time is that we kinda thought we could do anything. No one knew any better and for the most part the "game industry" veterans hired to manage us were not of much help or had even more ambitious and crazier ideas. Some things like AVP(although the development on that should have its own book) came out fairly cutting edge admittedly a lot of stuff was a struggle....


  5. Wouldn't it be fairly easy to hack Bubsy to accept 3 hits before dying? Change from 9 lives (cute, but impractical) and one hit, to three hits and three lives. Bet that would go a long way in helping people rediscover the game for those with a Skunkboard or the upcoming SD Flashcart. Or could have a cartridge made. Seems to be the #1 complaint about the game anyway.

     

    If the game could be revised that way, I know I'd want a cart. :)

    We thought of multiple hits, but that may have made things too easy, also it conflicted with the genesis code that it was being ported from. Most devs and testers on the Jag & lynx even if they were not hardcore gamers, played the games so many times that the games seemed easier than they may have been. I think we ramped the learning curves on most of the games too high. It was so people wouldn't beat the games in a day.


  6. Always fun to see the hate level of stuff I worked

     

    Not as much hate for Bubsy in this thread as I would have thought...lol (and even a few positive comments!!!!)

    Will need to check out Supercross again as I suspect that may not have aged well...

     

    I don't recall white men cant jump as being as bad as all the mentions (but its no NBA JAM)

     

    Club Drive could have been great, everyone had high hopes for that one, but clearly missed the mark

    Always fun to see the hate level of stuff I worked


  7. I am Faran Thomason, but a good friend of Purple. I don't think I ever visited you guys with Sam (or Jack) for that matter...I am drawing a blank on my boss(maybe it was Jon Correll ?) at the time who I was with when I visited you guys. As I recall the "deals" for the Accolade conversions were already sorted out before the projects landed in my lap. I assume Ringler was chosen based on work of previous sports titles.

     

    That is pretty random that Ed ended up selling bed frames.

     

    At some point I need to check out Barkely and Hull just for nostalgia's sake. Glad to hear that you and your crew went on to bigger and better things!

    • Like 2

  8.  

    Yeah I think most of us are aware of that. It was also pretty widespread news in the magazines of the time.

     

    Any details, pictures anecdotes about that and meeting with those actors I think would be very interesting. The rumor that I remember was that Ho Sung Pak got miffed that he was replaced by the guy who played Liu Kang in the movie to play the actual digitized motion capture parts in the subsequent Mortal Kombat games themselves.

    No interesting stories off hand, it wasn't my project so I think I only met them once or twice. I think there was some tension between them and the original MK devs. Probably over money and credits. Not sure on the specifics though, and in general they found out the hard way (like many people who try) that it's really difficult to make a good fighting game!


  9.  

    ok I totally missed that. You were the producer correct?

    Yeah but drawing a blank on how far we got in development. It just seems that MK3 got derailed due to so many other fighting games in dev like THea Realm fighters and fight for life. It's also possible that it took a while to get the source code from Midway and it lost momentum and got delayed due to that. I vaguely remember that they were stonewalling us on some details and it was tough getting materials from them for that game. Also it's possible that it was delayed to coincide with the 6 button controller.

     

    I remember meeting Ho Sung Pak and hearing his pitch on Thea Realm Fighters, but I am not sure that Atari actually funded that one. BTW Thea Realm fighters has the "actors" from the original MK(for whatever that was worth). I think the actors wanted a bigger piece of the pie so they figured they could make their own version and reap the benefits of owning the IP vs being in a work for hire arrangement.

    • Like 1

  10.  

     

    Well since no one else will do it I guess I will.

     

    What do you remember about Mortal Kombat 3 if anything? How much was finished? Playable demo? Was it being developed in house at Atari or subcontracted out? And if so to who?

    This is a requote from me another AA thread regarding MK 3

     

    Since it was 20 years ago, that is the best of my recollection on MK3, but there might have been some other random reason why it never got too far off the ground. It's possible that there was a demo since it was just a port and we had the graphics and source...but don't quote me on that and start looking for something that doesn't exist ;)
    I think the development was outsourced, but I cant remember who was doing it. My guess would be High Voltage since they were close to Midway in that era. However, I think MK 3 got derailed by the possibility of the The Realm Fighters game.
    My memory is a bit fuzzy on it since it was so long ago. But we had the machine and did start some development on it.
    • Like 3

  11. RE Tiny Toons

     

    Actually I am drawing a blank. I didn't I have too much involvement with that one. I know one version was internally developed and its possible that the other one was externally developed. But since I wasn't involved in that project I don't remember the specifics. Nor can I recall why at least one version didn't get finished. But its possible that it could gotten kicked around to different people due to staff leaving or moving to different projects. I am pretty sure we had actual animators who had worked on some popular cartoons at that time.

     

    While I am not sure this happened on Tiny Toons, this kind of thing has happened at most game companies I have worked for. When upper management initially sign the deals with movie companies to license characters everyone is excited, however if the production is not going as planned and the license fee bills become due, sometimes the project is killed to get out of the licensed deal. This has even happened at places I have worked like Nintendo so it's possible Tiny Toons which probably was not cheap may have met the same fate...Just speculation on my part though.

     

    I might also add that the production staff was small in proportion to the amount of games being developed. I myself was probably working on 5 or 6 games at any one time and almost all the devs were European, so our business hours were different.

     

    Also in regards to "flagship mascot game" in general I think we wanted to own the IP for whatever character that would be. We did the a "cross company" competition to create a mascot. I think some of the ideas have been floated around here. They were all pretty bland or cliche, we chucked the "funny animal" concept and pivoted to the "Black Ice/White Noise concept".

    • Like 5

  12. RE: Pong 2000

     

    Honestly I don't recall, but it does sound vaguely familiar. Since Atari owned the rights it's very possible that we probably had treatments for every popular IP that Atari owned. And I do remember Chris Gore coming by and doing stories on Atari. My guess is that it was a treatment and there was no demo. Good or bad there was no shortage of ideas at Atari. And probably every Jag game that you know of had a tentative sequel that was discussed but that was the nature of the business. Look at all the sequels and or remakes from the Jag and Lynx era and you can see the pattern.

    • Like 1

  13. Here is a brief update

     

    RE: 1 hit kills...Since we were using the source code from Bubsy 1 we had to follow that framework. I think we upped the lives the player to make up for the 1 hit kills.

     

    No idea why we went with the yellow exclamation point. (maybe a palette issue)

     

    Here is a map from bubsy for the jag

    bubsy Map

    • Like 3

  14. Faran here,

    RE: MK 3

     

    Since it was 20 years ago, that is the best of my recollection on MK3, but there might have been some other random reason why it never got too far off the ground. It's possible that there was a demo since it was just a port and we had the graphics and source...but don't quote me on that and start looking for something that doesn't exist ;)

     

    RE: Mindripper

    I think we could have gotten away with a fun and cheesy game and there were a lack of FPS type games on the Jag. And we would have been able to leverage the likeness of Lance Henrikson and the full cast, so if we actually got it done I think it would have been a cool cult game no matter how it turned out.

     

    RE The pics my scanner is busted, but will improvise and try to send some stuff along and or post some pics here if people are interested in BTS stuff from Atari back in the Jag era.

     

    Glad you folks enjoyed the interview!

    • Like 5

  15. Random true story about BHH and Barkley Basketball...

     

    I was meeting with the dev on the project and was wondering why the projects were barely behind schedule and barely started and why he had a new BMW that seemed to coincide with the last Milestone payments. We got into a shouting match and he said why don't we take it outside! My boss at the time had to intervine before the fisticuffs....

    • Like 5

  16. Good general comments...

     

    In general most of the games were tough due to the following factors:

    -Many games developed in the UK, where the coders were raised on super tough "psygnosis" style games.

    -Games were tuned by testers who played the games 12 hours + a day, thus we though they were too easy

    -Some of the coders were champion level arcade gamers

     

    RE: Bubsy honestly I don't remember Bubsy being that hard (but see comments above), plus a game made around the theme of fairy tales, obviously should have been easier ;)

     

    Mindripper doomed to fail, but hey I got to go to Bulgaria and see the set of the movie.

     

    While hindsite is 20/20, the whole was great experience and intro to the industry, but obviously everything was doomed to fail, but glad to see the community and some people that still enjoy the product.

     

    hmm guess I will have to watch this car wreck and see if I'm in it...

     

    tell us what you did on the Jag. :)

     

    I know I went to that 1st E3, but can't remember whether it was w/ Atari or not...

     

    Either way I worked on "classics" like

    Bubsy

    Barkley Basektball

    Brett Hull Hockey

    Supercross/Motorcross

    Baldies

    Cybermorph

    Lynx Lemmings

    Jimmy Conners Tennis

    Beach Volleyball

    Raiden

    Dino Dudes

    A little bit on avp

    Mindripper

     

    probably some other stuff I can't remember...I was a tester, producer, designer,etc.

     

    Sweet! :D We have a Bubsy fanatic here at these forums, he absolutely loves the game and made some great youtube videos of a playthrough. Most everyone else though finds the game extremely difficult because of the 1 hit kill.

     

    Barkley Basketball for the Jag is actually available for sale on the net even though it was never officially released. ;) Same deal with Brett Hull Hockey.

     

     

    Supercross, almost everyone hates the game because of the reall low framerate but I actually like it cus I used to race motocross. :) I made a playthough video of it on youtube.

     

    Baldies has some fans but isnt a very well known game. I peronsally could never figure it out myself but im not much of a cerebral gamer. :P

     

    Cybermorph, I really love this game. Seems like half the people who play it dont like it cus its a huge and somewhat difficult game while the rest of us really like it. I actually like it more than Battlemorph. :D Just something about it.

     

    Raiden on the Jag is great, pretty much everyone likes it.

     

    Dino Dudes has many fans. funny game.

     

    AvP everyone knows about.

     

    dont know much about Mindripper but found this http://www.cyberroach.com/jaguarcd/html/mindripp.htm

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