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Forbes Interviews Wasteland 2 Producer

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Forbes Interviews Wasteland 2 Producer

Interview - posted by Zed on Tue 24 April 2012, 00:00:44

Tags: Chris Keenan; Crowdfunding; Wasteland 2

Forbes has an interview up with Wasteland 2 producer Chris Keenan. The first half of the interview might not be that interesting to people who have followed Wasteland 2 these last couple of months. The later half of the interview is quite interesting however, covering topics such as crowdfunding as a business model and their plans for the future.

What sort of time table does the game have? How do you think the unorthodox funding might affect the development process itself?

We are talking about a 18 month development cycle. We’ll spend the next 6 months doing a rock solid paper design. We want to be able to play through the entire game using pen and paper before we implement it into the game. In the mean time, our tech team is working on our pipeline to import assets into the different engines we’re looking at and then they’ll start to create our tools in addition to what they provide. Once the initial 6 months are up, we hit the ground running and build the game with an extended team.

The funding is going to allow us to focus 100% of our energy on the game. We have enough support that if we budget correctly will last us until the game goes out the door. This is unheard of for most independent developers. Every few months, they are at the mercy of the publishers approving their milestone. If they don’t and are cash poor, they immediately need to go into damage control mode. This can lead to a publisher saying “we aren’t going to pay you until feature X,Y and Z work like this”. Your decision is either close the doors and not pay your employees or give in and do what they say. Not exactly a best practice for the creative process. We also don’t have to do any trade shows that we don’t want to. On some previous projects, we would have to create brand new demo’s for each event. This would take down our entire project lead team for 2 months to polish the demo that the public will see. When you’re focusing 90% of your energy on these press demos, you can’t lead the regular game production. This makes it hard to keep consistent feedback loops with the team working in the trenches. With 3 to 4 major industry events a year, you sometimes feel like most of your time is spent working on these demos.

So what’s your big hope for this game? And do you think this might be a model you guys will choose to follow again with future titles?

My big hope? Don’t screw it up. We’ve got everything going in our favor. An awesome team, supportive fans, a great design, financial support now we have to build it and make it awesome. When you know that the game wouldn’t be created without help from the fans, it adds a different twist. We’re not talking about a giant publishers money that knows the reality of how many games are successful. People are sacrificing and giving up things in their life to make Wasteland 2 happen. That’s very motivating and it’s also a lot of pressure. Between our president and myself, we’ve answered every single private message that was sent to us through Kickstarter. It really makes you feel connected to the people supporting it. The general consensus is “we trust you, now deliver”. The team couldn’t be more excited and we’re going to do just that!​

Read the entire interview here.

Spotted at RPGWatch.

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