WhatIfGaming: Hey, David. Nice seeing you again after E3. How are things?
David Cage: Thanks. Glad to see you guys here too actually. Was great speaking with you all briefly at the Sony room.
WhatIfGaming: Always a pleasure, but let’s get down to the main Q&A as we know you’re a busy guy.
David Cage: Haha. Okay, sure.
WhatIfGaming: Everyone knows what Heavy Rain is by now, the PS3 exclusive title that’s similar to Indigo Prophecy in the amount of aesthetic realism of emotions that are shown. The small clip from E3 that was shown to the public for the first time here today really captured our hearts again, especially with a 2nd viewing. How do you guys feel about the positive reaction so far?
David Cage: Well, there are two things. Ever since we showed a technical demo of Heavy Rain back in 2006, it was really WOW-ed by not just you guys but also the mass public as well. In a way it’s a surprise but it’s also just very obvious to us. We’ve been working hard on it and it’s going to be a real treat for gamers come mid-2009.
WhatIfGaming: The main protagonist is Madison, who apparently will have some sort of a lead detective role in the still very mysterious game and the storyline of the Origami Killer. How did the idea spring from Quantic Dream to step up the interactive storytelling element in a newer plane? Did Indigo Prophecy’s success play a strong part in it?
DC: What primarily interests me is the performance for an actor, and how it really translates into something like a video game. It’s not easy, and that’s always the sort of thing I aim for. Luckily not you guys, but a lot of publications that don’t understand what we’re doing constantly try to come back to the idea of realism behind Heavy Rain. But it is not that. It’s more than that to create something technological and good at the same time. Indigo Prophecy does lead us into a sort of branch with Heavy Rain, but it’s a completely different game and we’re making it as different.
WhatIfGaming: Haha. It makes sense, but the primary audience of the game is constantly saying “Z0mgz! It looks the reelz.” For you as a major producer and developer of Heavy Rain, does it not come back to the realism in the end?
DC: It’s definitely easier for the audience to relate to something that’s real. But a lot of them don’t see that it wasn’t just realism that drove this. It was the emotion, and the interaction firstmost that pushed it beyond the edge where we said “Okay, realism is going to be a part of it,” because that’s the only way to fully convey these emotions.
WhatIfGaming: Better than having pixel animations or another cell shaded piece of work. (laugh)
DC: (laugh) Well, realism is also an important factor, always is when it comes to making something believable in terms of telling a story set on the landscape we’re in.
WhatIfGaming: From the presentation we saw, it really delved in the fact that the player is always in control with interactive elements, the speed and force with which something is done that the camera reflects rather conspicuously. The only thing we kind of didn’t like, and yes it’s not perfect yet, is the button mashing sequences. Clearly in the extended scene when we saw struggle, it really seemed like just button mashing to convey actions. Wouldn’t the right thing be to make even the interaction an interaction in itself?
DC: (smirk) Yeah, I could see your reaction to that at E3 (laughs).
WhatIfGaming: Don’t get me wrong. It was really intense, but the fingers don’t really convey that. If high level of emotion is such a big thing, why not find a way to control even how things like that play out? Maybe the character can grab an item on the table and defend or something? Throw a chair?
DC: Those are really great ideas but think of the whole game itself is a bigger picture. That’s the easiest way I can put this. There is a picture with all different parts. Some might be button mashers like you describe but it’s all really for the overall experience that we’re aiming for.
WhatIfGaming: We know there will be supporting “actors”: Ethan Mars, Scott Shelby, and Norman Jayden. Will they play a big role or are we looking at just unknowns and a clear cut protagonist? Will other character be playable or have a bigger part in Madison’s story?
DC: You know us. We’re definitely going to stretch what we can do here. So yes, we’re looking at other playable characters that have more to do with the story.
WhatIfGaming: As for actual gameplay clip for the public, will that be shown anytime soon? Or is the trailer all they’re getting?
DC: I can’t say anything to you right now, but I’d tell them to expect something more than just a trailer and soon.
We would like to thank David Cage for not finishing his breakfast and doing this interview with us. We secretly planned to ruin his meal all along.
Autor: Richard Sweeting
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