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Mar 21 2012
By: Sushi_Pirate Fender Bender 4029 posts
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Recap & Community Discussion: Journey Live Chat with thatgamecompany

2 replies 87 views Edited Mar 21, 2012

journey.jpg

Hey everyone,

To celebrate the release of Journey, and to give you a chance to get all your questions answered, we will be hosting a live that this Friday at 10 AM PST 1 PM EST

Come and chat with the game devs from thatgamecompany and ask any question that might have been bouncing around your head!

See you Friday!

http://us.playstation.com/livechat/journey-livechat.html

-SP


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Lombax Warrior
Registered: 02/07/2012
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Re: Journey Live Chat with thatgamecompany Friday March 9th

Mar 10, 2012

Hey everyone,

Thank you so to everyone who attended and participated in the Journey Live Chat. You all has some wonderful questions, insights and comments. It was a fun and lively chat with Jenova Chen and Robin Hunicke from ThatGameCompany. We deeply thank them for taking the time to share their thoughtful responses.

We ook forward to seeing you at the next live chat on March 14th 2012 at 3pm PST with Tsubasa Inaba discussing Hot Shots.

In the meantime, if you missed the chat or would like to relive all over again here is the complete recap:

10:01


Sushi_Pirate:

Hi everyone!  Thanks so much for joining our chat today with thatgamecompany to discuss the amazing new PSN title, Journey.  We are very lucky today to have two developers joining the chat - Jenova Chen and Robin Hunicke.  Jenova cofounded thatgamecompany and acts as Creative Director, and Robin is the game's Producer.

10:01


Comment From JonJonXD

Hello!

10:01


Comment From Magnum

Thanks for taking the time to talk to us amidst all the GDC frenzy!

10:01


Comment From Cloud

Thanks for being here with us : )

10:01


Comment From Kojima390

hi

10:01


roBin:

Hello everyone - thanks for taking the time to chat with us!

10:02


Sushi_Pirate:

Jenova, Robin, we're very excited to have you with us today.  We see everyone's questions rolling in, and to kick things off, can you tell us about the inspiration behind Journey? 

10:02


Comment From Gouchi

Hello from Japan

10:02


Comment From BrushYourTeeth

Just finished my first Journey a few nights ago and still can't believe what I had the honor to play!

10:03


Comment From Robert

loved the beta, can't wait to hear more about Journey!

10:03


Comment From traWnza

Hello from California!

10:04


Comment From Sean Keane

DONT STOP, BELIEVING!!!!!!

10:04


Comment From JonJonXD

I just finished my first play through about an hour ago. I have to say it was phenomenal. It was an amazing experience. Also, Austin is a musical genius.

10:04


Comment From Abdulhamid

hello from Saudi Arabia

10:04


Comment From Niklas

Hello from Germany

10:04


Comment From Alin

This game made my cry because of how beautiful it was. Thank you for an amazing EXPERIENCE

10:05


Sushi_Pirate:

We are receiving your questions and comments.  You'll see your question appear once it's selected to be answered.  We will do our best to answer as many questions as we can. 

10:05


Comment From Yosh

Hello from France

10:05


Comment From Sean Keane

Hello from ireland

10:05


Comment From Boogalicious

Hello from the UK! =)

10:05


Comment From Malamo999

I loved the game, it was simply beautiful.

10:05


Comment From Niklas

Are you always working with your Flow-Thesis, or have you ever extend them sometimes or ignore some parts?

10:05


Comment From Amish

Hello from Minnesota! 

10:05


roBin:

Hey Niklas - that's a good question! We are always looking for new ways to help players feel something new. I would say the theory about this is constantly evolving.

10:05


Comment From wikar

hello from Mexico!

10:06


Jenova:

The inspiration for Journey comes from the observation of the current console online games. We try to make emotional experience that's push the boundary of what video games can do. There is a negative association with the players online among players today. We really want to change that impression.

10:06


Comment From Magnum

I noticed that there's a huge number of white symbols in Journey. Do these translate into specific letters or words?

10:06


roBin:

Hey Magnum! The symbols are actually all related to each other, but they do not create an alpha-numeric language that can be translated. They are more fictional.

10:06


Comment From NLombardo

Hello from Santa Monica

10:06


Comment From PrinceKazama

hello from indiana

10:06


Comment From Numa4numa

Im from Japan.Thanks for fun event.

10:07


Comment From Oscar!

I just finished the game yesterday, and was absolutely blown away and brought to tears by the last act. I had no idea that the other characters were actual psn players. Apparently it's common knowledge, but was there ever a plan to keep that a secret? Or did you know that would be almost impossible?

10:07


roBin:

Oscar - another great question! We did actually discuss keeping this secret but after a long discussion, we decided that it would be a pretty strange thing to try and keep quiet.

10:07


Comment From techjunkieryo

I actually woke up early for this

10:08


roBin:

And it's true - even though we let people know, it often happens that people are not *sure* it's another person until they have played together for a while.

10:08


Jenova:

Thanks, I'm still waking up at this moment

10:08


Comment From Sebastian

This question may not be strictly Journey-related, but: Are you thinking about generally making more "social games"? I would really like to see something like flOw in a multiplayer environment - like current MMOs, just.... just in the extraordinary thatgamecompany-style And another question: what do you think about watching walkthroughs for your games? I don't have a PS3 and probably won't be able to get one for quite some time, so I rely on YouTube videos, but I'm not sure if I want to "spoiler" anything if I watch a full Journey walkthrough now - what do you think about that? (Sorry for this wall of text)

10:09


roBin:

Sebastian - we like the idea of creating a social, online experience!

10:09


roBin:

I would definitely say that if you want to avoid spoilers, don't watch playthroughs!!

10:10

10:10


Jenova:

Sebastian - a lot of people talk about social game today. But they are not necessarily about social emotions. Social means the exchange of emotions between the two people to me. But what you get in a lot of console game online is the exchange of blows

10:10


Comment From andysmithaudio

I want to know about the audio!

10:11


roBin:

Andy - what can we tell you about the audio? The soundtrack was created by Austin Wintory - our composer. Austin worked on the game for the entire production (3 years) so he had a lot of time to perfect the music! Steve Johnson, from Sony Santa Monica, did the sound design - creating all the sounds for sand, cloth, shouts and so on!

10:11


Jenova:

andysmithaudio - which part of the audio? SFX or music?

10:11


roBin:

It was pretty amazing to work with both Steve and Austin to create the unique sounds that make Journey feel so real!

10:12


Comment From PrinceKazama

Love the game, are you considering making DLC I would love to continue the journey!

10:12


roBin:

PrinceKazama - no DLC planned! It's pretty complete as it is!

10:12


Comment From matt

Will you be releasing Flower or Journey on PC or Mac?

10:12


Comment From Noodles

The music in the game was mind-blowing!

10:13


Jenova:

matt - No, Journey and Flower are Playstation Exclusive

10:13


Sushi_Pirate:

We are receiving your questions and comments.  You'll see your question appear once it's selected to be answered.  We will do our best to answer as many questions as we can. 

10:13


Comment From Jake

How is Journey animated? I've never seen visuals quite like it. It's like cel shading and photorealism had a fantasy lovechild.

10:13


Comment From andysmithaudio

Wow! so A really small audio team? Cool! Thank you so much for the answer! I havent played the game yet, but it's definitely one I wont miss!

10:13


roBin:

Jake - the game was created and animated using Maya... but we have some special techniques for lighting and visual effects that create the game's unique look

10:14


Comment From Magnum

Did the story emerge through the development process, or was it composed at the very start?

10:14


roBin:

John Edwards (our lead engineer) and Matt Nava (our lead artist) worked together over the course of the project to create that look using the best tech and concepts they could muster!

10:14 

10:15


roBin:

Magnum - the story evolved over the project... as we refined the way the game felt and looked, we also re-visited the ideas behind the world, it's history and what we wanted to say!

10:16


roBin:

But there were some key story elements that stayed the same throughout - because part of Jenova's inspiration was the Hero's Journey!

10:16


Jenova:

Magnum - The story's basic arc and narrative is determined very early. But the details and the history didn't become finalized until the last minute.

10:16


roBin:

Andy - the team itself was actually pretty small! We stayed around 12 people for most of the project... it's kind of nuts, isn't it? 

10:17


Comment From Sonic9jct

I played the beta, haven't picked up the game yet.  I had a serious emotional response just from what I played, so I can only imagine what the full game will do to me.

10:18


Jenova:

Sonic9jct - the full game is actually quite different from what you see in the beta

10:18


Comment From JonJonXD

Wow, a game like this only took 12 people to make? You guys are brilliant.

10:18


Comment From Marc

Since I am a grownup, I usually don't get very easily excited any more...but your game did that for me! It was a truely unforgettable Journey and I love the "storyline behind the storylin", wich is for each individual player to explore.

10:18


roBin:

JonJonXD - yes - and three years!

10:18


Comment From Sobtanian

Hello from England! When I played FLOWER, I didn't think any game could beat it. Then along came Journey. Me and my wife played it last night from start to finish and were moved beyond words.

10:19


roBin:

Marc - thank you so much for saying so. This really means a lot to us!

10:19


Comment From Niklas

How important do you think is the segmenting of the game into levels, to create a feeling of progress?

10:19


roBin:

Niklas - it was definitely something we thought about a lot. Early in the development, the game was much more continuous - the breaks between areas were not as clear. And it didn't work as well!

10:19

10:20


roBin:

We playtest the game continuously to see how our ideas are working - and what needs improvement.

10:20


roBin:

Adding a break between levels, giving you a sense that you were getting closer to the mountain - this was something that was very influenced by our playtests!

10:20


Comment From Kojima390

Was it a challenge for the team to simulate the sand and snow so well in Journey?

10:20


Jenova:

Kojima390 - It is. The look and feel of the sand took us at least a year to get it right. The look of snow is somewhat easier since we can tweak sand to look white and less fluid.

10:21


Comment From Sonic9jct

Did you guys consider making the game primarily controlled by sixaxis ala Flow and Flower, or did you want it the be controlled directly from the start?

10:21


Comment From johnsos3

Just wanted to say thank you for making such a wonderful game and experience. All of it was stunning, but the last segment was particularly jaw-dropping.

10:21


roBin:

We tried to keep it just sixaxis - but people kept asking for thumbstick!

10:21


roBin:

So we tried it - and realized that we could actually do both! John Nesky was the programmer primarily responsible for this innovation!

10:22


roBin:

johnsos3 - what was your favorite part?

10:23


Comment From Noodles

The game was mind-blowing. Great work you guys!

10:23


Jenova:

Noodles - Thanks!!

10:23


Comment From Tricky

TGC I love you guys you are my favorite developers, please don't stop making games

10:24


Comment From Guest

Just wanted to say I've loved each of your games about twice as much as the previous game.  Mathematically speaking, my head should explode by the time you release a new game.  Thanks for such a wonderful, unique experience.  Definitely one of my all time favorites.

10:24


Comment From Alin

Since you are making very peaceful and artistic games, I am very curious how the atmosphere is in your studious, and the dynamics between each other.

10:24


roBin:

We have a small studio with room for about 14 people total - and over the course of Journey it was pretty packed! We have lots of toys and images of the game everywhere to inspire us. 

10:24


Comment From Zero

I love you guys, can I have your babies?

10:24


Sushi_Pirate:

We are receiving your questions and comments.  You'll see your question appear once it's selected to be answered.  We will do our best to answer as many questions as we can. 

10:24


roBin:

But making new games is tough! There was a lot of interesting, passionate and sometimes intense debate about how to make Journey the best game it could be!

10:25


Comment From Boogalicious

What was the inspiration behind the character's look? Is the scarf something symbolic that you wanted to put across to the player?

10:25


Jenova:

Boogalicious - we started with a muscular character and he's more ninja like, but very quickly we feel it's not right since it makes you want to be very action oriented. Then we changed the design of the character, we removed his arms so you don't expect action when you see another player. We made the character gender neutral. 

10:25


Comment From Jeff

What came first, the art, music or gameplay? They all work together so seamlessly it's amazing!

10:25


Comment From wikar

guys you are awesome!!! i love your games!!

10:26


roBin:

Matt listened to Austin's music to get inspired, so a lot of the art came from the music!

10:26


roBin:

Jenova also spent a lot of time listening to the music (he implemented most of it!) so he was similarly very close to it. 

10:26


Comment From traWnza

Why did you choose for the players to not be able to communicate via text or microphone?

10:26

10:27


Jenova:

traWnza - we feel if player can chat and talk, they will take the player out of the world of Journey and start to behave against the law of Journey. And that will work against the mood and ethics of the game.

10:27

10:27


Comment From Gouchi

Robin will you release the red scarf you made ? or release a tutorial ?

10:28


roBin:

I made that scarf by hand... and it took a long time

10:28


Comment From Chad

I agree with that, plus most ppl don't use their mics in other games anyhow.

10:28


Comment From JourneyFan

Can you please team up with Mm so we can have a sackgirl DLC?

10:29


roBin:

I will post a design diary on the blog so you guys can see how it was made - and make one yourselves!!!

10:29


scea_bdunn:

JourneyFan, that's a great idea, and not an impossible request...

10:29


Comment From Noodles

Jenova - I agree with you on that! I think it was a great move to remove chat/talk from the game. It made you feel more part of the world and made the experience richer

10:29


Comment From Tricky

Such a small team, and yet you perfected a game that even big developers couldn't even do

10:30


Jenova:

Tricky - It's actually easier to coordinate among a small team to create a coherent visioin

10:30


Comment From JourneyFan

Please do it!!! I am in love with the Journey character!!

10:30


Comment From Gouchi

Did Journey use all the PS3 power ? I was thinking of the latest tech demo of David cage called Kara which is render in realtime

10:30


Comment From Leovinus

When will the soundtrack be released?

10:31


Jenova:

Yes, we have learned a lot from Flower, so we are using the full cell processor this time in Journey.

10:31


Comment From NLombardo

Did you reference any cultures in particular for the look of the architecture and writing in the game?

10:31


scea_bdunn:

the soundtrack is in production, but we don't have an official date of release yet. stay tuned

10:31


roBin:

Yes, Matt was very inspired by Turkish, Greek, Egyptian and Mayan architecture!

10:31


Comment From Sobtanian

Also, the lack of mic/text meant we had to invent a language of our own! Me and my companion just understood each other by the time we reached the end!

10:31


Comment From andysmithaudio

Yes! I want the Soundtrack!!

10:31


roBin:

That's great, Sobtanian!!

10:31


Comment From Akash

Given the size of your team and the amount of time it took to make, what do you expect multiplatform development to be like? Do you think not being able to focus on a single console might affect the quality of your next project?

10:32


Jenova:

Akash - Yes, we are definitely benefited from focusing on one console.

10:32


Comment From Eramo88

You should bring Journey to the PSVita

10:32


Comment From Oliver

Was the goal of reaching the ever-present mountain destination influenced by older arcade games (like Ghosts 'n Goblins and others) where you were always made aware how far you had to go and how many levels you had to complete until you reached the end with a overview map?

10:33


scea_bdunn:

Eramo88, currently there are no plans to bring Journey to any console except the PS3

10:33


roBin:

Jenova's very first concepts included the idea of moving towards a large, distant destination

10:33


Comment From Gouchi

How did you decide when a new player appears ?

10:33


Jenova:

Gouchi - we choose the timing based on the physical distance. It can't be too far or too close

10:33


roBin:

At first it was actually more of a crack in a huge wall - but the Mountain idea evolved from that!

10:34


Comment From Matthew

Was absolutely blown away by the game when I first completed it on Wednesday. Thank you so much for such a wonderful experience! (Went back for a second playthrough this morning.) What encouraged you to release PSN ID's on completion? Personally I would have liked to have seen it kept anonymous. Either way - I can't thank you enough! Amazing, amazing experience

10:34


Comment From Patrick K.

What influenced the design of the main character and why does she have no feet?

10:34


roBin:

Matthew - we decided to add that so that people could see it was real players they had met!

10:34


Jenova:

Patrick K. - she used to have feet. But then we realized her feet doesn't align with the ground very well. And it will take a lot of man power to make it work as well as Uncharted 3. So we decided to cut the feet

10:34

10:34


Comment From traWnza

thanks for answering my question - I think that's one of the best parts of the game!

10:34


Comment From JourneyFan

I loved this game! Thank you for this masterpiece!!

10:34


Comment From Jake

Two parts: 1) What do/did you call the main character in Journey? Is there a name or title you used in the studio? 2) How would you feel if another developer wanted to do a cameo of your character, a la how Super Meat Boy included other characters as playable avatars?

10:35


roBin:

We have a variety of names for the character - but we don't have one official name!

10:35


Comment From Alin

What were some of the games that inspired you while making journey?

10:35


roBin:

It would be *awesome* to see the Journeyer in some other games.....

10:35


Jenova:

Alin - shadow of the colossus, ico and endless forrest are the most close inspiration

10:35


roBin:

I was personally very inspired by Passage, a game by Jason Rorher

10:35


Comment From Japes

Just finished my second play through. I love how you list the players you interact with. I played with one person in particular for most of the game, so afterwards we exchanged PSN messages just saying "Nice playing with you!" Awesome online experience.

10:36


Comment From Spazgadget

How was working with Sony - did they give you carte blanche to create the game you wanted?  To want extent did the guide your direction?  Or was their role mainly supportive?

10:36


roBin:

There are many people at Sony who are dedicated to making new and interesting games -they helped us get the time and resources we needed to make Journey amazing!!

10:36


Comment From digicho

Did you aim to make people cry?

10:36


Comment From Oman_Gamer

is the avatar a girl or a boy ? neither probably ?!

10:37


roBin:

It is up to you!

10:37


Comment From Sobtanian

My wife and I were shocked at the end to see that we had ran in to 8 players, but we only ever saw (and interacted) with one. It immediately make us wonder what we had missed by not meeting the other players. Displaying the names at the end = genius

10:37


Comment From Cloud

could you release some concept art with the earlier - full bodied- Character?

10:37


roBin:

Sobtanian - next time you play, observe the symbols of the other players... you may see a difference!

10:37


Comment From Guilherme Alvarenga

Is the short duration of the game part of the concept?Are you formally contesting the duration of the games?

10:37


Jenova:

Guilherme Alvarenga - we learn from film, when you keep player in front of the screen too long, they have to have a break. The idea is to build up an emotion and let it explode in one sitting.

10:38


scea_bdunn:

Cloud, if you take a look at the developer diaries, you can see some of the early concept art

10:38


roBin:

Exactly - a longer game would have been much harder to pull off!

10:38


Comment From Oman_Gamer

Thanks for being with us and I love this idea for chatting with the developers

10:38


roBin:

Maybe if we're lucky, there will be an Art of Journey book!

10:38


Comment From Thomas_Denmark

do you feel you now have to make "these kind of games" or does it come natural? And, how does something "come batural" when we dont really see the same kinda games from other developers?

10:38


roBin:

I personally feel that it is important to keep pushing!

10:38


Comment From David2Crazy

I thought I had only interacted with 2 different players, turned out it was 5. The seamlessly of the online integration is incredible.

10:39


roBin:

Life is short - making games that create new feelings in people is important!

10:39


Comment From Jeff

How does one get the white and gold outfit? Is that from many playthroughs or is it someone on the staff?

10:39


roBin:

The white players are genuine players!

10:39


Comment From Wingus

Will there be behind the scenes videos of how development went? I always love to watch those

10:39


roBin:

You will probably have to do some exploring to earn it!

10:40

        

10:40


scea_bdunn:

Wingus, we've released 2 developer diaries, check those out for some great behind the scenes stuff

10:40


scea_bdunn:

there's one now!

10:40


Comment From Weefz

I know that I and a few of my friends found the game incredibly emotional, to say the least. Can you tell us how you approached gamer psychology and human behaviour when designing the mechanics?

10:40


roBin:

We are always trying to reach people in their hearts - in the core of their emotional being, where they are not so much thinking as feeling!

10:41


Comment From Oliver

In Flower, there seemed to be a heavy reliance on music to express and enforce emotion a key moments, and now in Journey, visuals are the key emotive elements (loneliness, determination, wonder, mystery, inquisitiveness, etc.) - do you agree and was there a concious effort to focus on iconic visuals in this way?

10:41


scea_bdunn:

If you didn't see it in the chat feed above, you can catch the other one on the PS Blog: http://blog.us.playstation.com/2012/03/09/a-new-era-for-playstation-network-begins-with-journey/

10:41


Jenova:

Oliver - I think the importance of music in Journey is as big as Flower. Visually we just want the game to evoke a sense of companionship.

10:41


Sushi_Pirate:

We are receiving your questions and comments.  You'll see your question appear once it's selected to be answered.  We will do our best to answer as many questions as we can. 

10:41


roBin:

I agree - it's important to use both as we can!!

10:41


Comment From Guest

how many character design stages did the primary character go through?

10:41


Comment From NLombardo

Can you reveal just how many symbols were created for their alphabet?

10:42


Comment From Nick P

How long does it take for questions to get selected? You guys must be swamped!

10:42


roBin:

We had about 4 major changes to the character over the course of the game!

10:42


Jenova:

NLombardo It's generated by a random alghorithm. So there are a lot. But for the player's name, there's about 24.

10:42


scea_bdunn:

Nick, yes we're going as fast as we can! Thanks for the great questions and we wish we could answer them all!

10:42


roBin:

Hahah there are quite a few!

10:43


Comment From Marc

roBin: "Life is short - making games that create new feelings in people is important!" The most beautiful gaming related statement, I've ever heard!!! :smileyhappy:)

10:43


roBin:

Thank you - I truly mean it. I want to make the planet closer, more empathetic and more full of love. 

10:43


Comment From LA Rogue Beatz

I don't think I have ever been so emotionally involved in a game before. Thank you. It bought me to tears, in a good way :-)

10:43


roBin:

Hopefully, Journey can do this in some small way.

10:44


Comment From Guest

Emotionally, what direction are you headed with your next game?

10:44


Jenova:

Guest - we like to observe the world and find emotions people really need at large. I'm still looking not decided yet

10:44


Comment From JonJonXD

Have you ever considered coming to the NYU Game Center to give a talk about game development and your approach to games? I'm sure it would benefit a lot of people who want to enter the game industry.

10:44


roBin:

Jenova and I actually do a lot of speaking - I may end up at NYU this summer for a bit!

10:44

10:44


roBin:

I'll be out in Austin for SXSW this Sunday, and then at the Smithsonian the following Saturday - if you are in those areas please come out!

10:45


Comment From Chad

Might I suggest that you do a Q & A on your main website comprised of all the questions you feel most speak to you? Provided you don't get to them all.

10:45


SCEA:

Chad - The replay will be available right here on this page.

10:45


Comment From Gouchi

Hope you will do a TED conference

10:45


roBin:

Kellee may! 

10:46


Comment From Jeff

Can't wait to see you guys at the Smithsonian!

10:46


Comment From Sonic9jct

Why did you make the decision to keep players from directly playing with people they know, like friends or family. Did you feel it might distract from the core experience?

10:46


Jenova:

Sonic9jct - We would like to. But say your brother's internet drops, do you stop playing? In the current game you will be connected to a different player.

10:46


Comment From JourneyFan

Jenova please make the Mm team up happen! I really want to see the Journey character in LBP 2!

10:46


Comment From Kneginja

Robin, how do you mean "The white players are genuine players"? You mean the ones at the end of each stage? By the way, THANKS so much for this game TGC

10:46


roBin:

Kneginja - I mean that they are people playing who have discovered the white costume!

10:47


roBin:

If you play the game a while, you will probably run into someone who has it.

10:47


Comment From Bolegium

was creating a game narrative without using text or speech challenging or liberating?

10:47


roBin:

Bolegium - it was both! 

10:47


Comment From Devin

Was there anything major that was cut from the game during the development process?

10:47


Comment From Zero

I own the white costume, it rocks =)

10:48


Comment From Oman_Gamer

Why did you choose the name of the game to be " Journey" ?! I know it's really a journey while playing but is this the reason ?!

10:48


roBin:

Devin - that's a good question. We cut a lot of small things, over time... but nothing very major, I would say.

10:48


Jenova:

Oman_Gamer We started the game based on the concept from Joseph Campbell's work on the Hero's Journey. But our player is not an action hero, it's a normal person. Journey is the most accurate name for the game imo.

10:48


Comment From Wingus

Did you guys have celebratory waffles after finally releasing Journey?

10:49


roBin:

Hahah - not waffels! We had some tequila, if I remember correctly!

10:49


Comment From Spazgadget

I can't help noticing parallels between your aims and those of David Cage (Quantic Dream) in making "emotional" experiences.   Are you in contact with his team at all?  Ever think of collaborating?

10:49


roBin:

We are definitely fans of Quantic Dream!!!!

10:49


Comment From Golden_1

Should I stop reading all these questions and just download it already?

10:49


roBin:

Golden_1  - YES!

10:50


Comment From Cadavir

Just wanted to let you know, I payed a month for Playstation plus JUST so I could get Journey early. First game I make my friends play on the PS3 is Flower, and as strange as they initially think it is, they eventually buy it themselves!

10:50


Jenova:

Spazgadget yeah, I met David last GDC. We both believe in pushing the boundary of emotions for games.

10:50


Comment From JonJonXD

@Golden_1

10:50


Comment From JonJonXD

Yes you should.

10:50


Comment From Alin

This game, and your hard work on it, really inspired me to start on the path of game developing. Can you tell us how did you start on this path ?

10:50


Comment From Zero

download it, now... go.

10:50


roBin:

I kind of "fell into" game development after being involved in robotics and AI research - mostly because I was inspired by Will Wright!

10:50

10:51


Comment From Nosada

did you intend for the multiplayer aspect of this game to be so rewarding. i mean the bond you develope with your companion and the way it enriches the experience. or was that just sort of a happy accident?

10:51


roBin:

Yes, our idea was from the very start to make a game where the other player improved your experience - instead of making it more stressful or worse!

10:51


Comment From Zero

are you releasing an official explanation of the ending??

10:51


Comment From Roarshack

i would download it but i don't have psn+

10:51


scea_bdunn:

Roarshack, if you don't have Plus, you can pre-order it on the store before Tuesday and get a concept art dynamic theme. 

10:51


roBin:

Zero - absolutely not. We want people to be able to take away their own personal feelings, message, and meaning from the game!

10:51


Comment From Magnum

I know that Chris Bell will be doing a panel at PAX East for Way, but will anyone else from thatgamecompany be attending?

10:52


Jenova:

Zero - we actually once had multiple endings. But this final one in the game is better. It is multiple ending in the player's mind.

10:52


roBin:

Perhaps! Many of us will be at the Smithsonian's Art of Games opening the weekend of March 15th!

10:52


roBin:

We are having a fan meetup there - watch our facebook page for info!

10:52


Comment From BrushYourTeeth

I was sick for most of the week following up till the release for PS+. The following morning after I played, I felt much better. I thank Journey and you guys for that

10:53


roBin:

Thank you for this, it inspires us to keep going!

10:53


Comment From JourneyFan

why does it take forever for my questions to appear?

10:53


Comment From Bolegium

Was it difficult to finally stop iterating on Journey, and lock off its final form?

10:53


scea_bdunn:

JourneyFan, I apologize that it's taking so long. We have over 100 questions and comments in the queue and we're trying to get to as many as possible

10:53


Comment From Zero

ok, now I can finally stop looking for another ending, thanks!! =)

10:53


roBin:

More difficult than you can possibly imagine! Jenova didn't want to stop working on it EVER!

10:53


Comment From Golden_1

Downloading now I am actually nervous to play! Does anyone from the team play still?

10:54


roBin:

We're all itching to get back from GDC so we can play with you guys!! 

10:54


Comment From Golden_1

I love that you guys make games that no matter your race gender or creed, anyone can get into them and have a great experience. Thanks

10:54


Jenova:

Golden_1 - We love human and want to design for human

10:54


Comment From Japes

Are you looking forward to any new games this year? Specifics?

10:54


Comment From banok

Art of Games! Take that Ebert!

10:54


roBin:

I am really looking forward to Last Guardian, and Jon Blow's new game The Witness!

10:54


Jenova:

Japes I heard MassEffect 3 is good. Can't wait to play it this weekend.

10:54


Comment From Zero

any advice for a rookie developer?

10:55


roBin:

Follow your heart, Zero. Do what you know you love - everything else will work itself out. 

10:56


Comment From David

Any idea if this will be ported to PC/Mac platforms?

10:56


scea_bdunn:

David, Journey is exclusive to PS3

10:56

10:57


Comment From Golden_1

Enjoy the rest of GDC, I am going to leave the chat, put my headphones on and lose myself in your world. Thank you for answering our questions!

10:58


Sushi_Pirate:

Hey everyone, some tech issues on our internet Journey on our end, give us a moment 

10:58

10:59


scea_bdunn:

If you guys want to stay up to date with TGC and Journey, you can follow them on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/thatgamecompany

10:59


Jenova:

I'm back.

10:59


Comment From Weefz

What was the biggest challenge you overcame when developing Journey?

10:59


roBin:

Our own self-doubt, and concerns that Journey wouldn't be as good as we hoped!

11:00


Comment From t3chjunk13ryo

Does the land change with each journey you go on? Or does it stay the same?

11:00


roBin:

It changes over the course of the Journey.... 

11:00


roBin:

But each walk to the mountain covers the same areas.

11:01


Jenova:

t3chjunk13ryo the biggest change is going to be from the players you meet.

11:01


roBin:

It's kind of like taking a walk in the real wilderness. You see the same things, but differently - depending on how you feel that day. 

11:01


roBin:

Exactly

11:01


Comment From Golden_1

Special thanks to Jenova!

11:01


Comment From Kneginja

Well, gotta head out now, I used my lunch hour to be here Thanks so much for Journey TGC. Hope to travel with all of you reading here soon Cheers.

11:01


Jenova:

Thanks for stopping by Kneginja!

11:02


Comment From Gouchi

Do you think the indie games will be more important in the future ? seeing new way to share games steam platform, open source distribution...

11:02


Comment From JonJonXD

I would recommend exploring all of the areas as well. There are a lot of hidden areas and things to find from what I've seen.

11:02


Comment From Wingus

Thank you for creating experiences that are vastly different from the thousands of FPSs out there

11:02


Comment From Oman_Gamer

important question just to clarify, what is the role of the studio Santa Monica with you guys at TGC?!

11:02


roBin:

We worked very closely with SSM - our external producer Randall was there, as well as Steve Johnson our sound designer!

11:02


Comment From David

Kellee Santiago was less in the spotlight during the development of this game compared to previous games. Has she taken on a different role?

11:02


Jenova:

David - Kellee has taken a different role on Journey since we need her role to be more involved in the business.

11:03


Comment From Jeff

I definitely appreciate using a thumbstick. It let me just melt into the game and be absorbed by it

11:03


Comment From Weefz

Haha, you have nothing worry about. It's incredible - now one of my favourite games of all time. Thank you so much for bringing gamers together and showing us how supportive strangers can be.

11:03


roBin:

Randall was especially helpful as we approached the end of the project - he helped us ship the game!!

11:03


Comment From Marc

What's the part, you are the most proud off, when you think about Journey?

11:03


roBin:

Weefz thank you for saying so. It really means so much to see everyone having such a great experience. I'd say that's that's the most inspirational part of working on this game. 

11:04

11:04


roBin:

Marc - knowing that people have been genuinely moved by it. 

11:04


Jenova:

Weefz - self doubt is our eternal enemy. Even when you have made some success in the past. It sometimes become more pressure since you want to top your self.

11:04


Comment From LethiaAlethia

Do you guys pay attention to other small, comparatively independent and very artistic projects such as "Braid" (Jonathan Blow) or "Limbo" (Arnt Jensen) and would you say they inspire you too or at least confirm you in your belief that there is a good market for these games?

11:04


Comment From jscott

thank you for the absolutely phenomenal game. its definitely one of the most memorable gaming experiences i've had in a very long time.

11:05


roBin:

Abslolutely! Jon Blow is actually a friend and inspiration of mine - we've known each other for over 10 years.

11:05


Comment From johnsos3

Really loved the entire palette, but without spoiling anything, the end was incredibly moving.

11:05


Comment From MetelStar

I have to say, Journey was just amazing, trying to figure out the story along the way. I also liked how, after finishing your journey in the game, you're told who you met along the way. Regardless of whether they're called "AttackSlug" or "UrTheBestCat," it's a nice little touch, makes it feel more personal, I suppose.

11:05


Jenova:

LethiaAlethia - this is an era that independent games are going through a renaissance. We are glad to be part of these new voices of video game creators 

11:05


Comment From proof of youth

guys, thank you so much for the game! ve finished it for 4 times already and it's stil stunning

11:05


roBin:

The indie community has ben extremely helpful, supportive and warm towards TGC and we are always grateful for this. Really - they are the bestest, most loving folks on the planet.

11:06


Comment From Boogalicious

How would you describe Journey to someone who has never experienced a game like it?

11:06


roBin:

Journey is a walk to the mountain - and along the way you may meet a likeminded stranger.

11:06


Comment From Bolegium

is the game suitable for all ages?

11:07


Jenova:

It is rated as 10+, since there is some scary parts.

11:07


Comment From Cadavir

Are you ever going to do a big budget game? I'd love a game with countless hours of gameplay.

11:07


Comment From Numa4numa

Journey has so good camerawork. Camera moves to where we want to see. Especially when I walk with companion.

11:07


roBin:

We would only do something like that if we could do it without bloating our studio!

11:07


Comment From takeflight

I was surprised but thrilled when I encountered another player and we stuck side by side for the whole journey

11:07


roBin:

We value being small, being able to communicate rapidly and to make a lot of progress using tools and tech.

11:07


scea_bdunn:

Bolegium, the game is suitable for all ages, although as Jenova mentioned, there could be some parts that are a little scary for young ones

11:07


Comment From Jeff

What's so amazing is that every Journey is unique. My first play through was actually my friend's second so I accidentally skipped the first level. Yet, to me, the level with the pink sand couldn't have been a better opener.

11:08


scea_bdunn:

It's rated E for Everyone, with Mild Fantasy Violence

11:08


Comment From Patrick K.

Do you plan on sticking with making downloadable titles or do you think TGC will eventually release a disc-based game?

11:08


roBin:

We feel that downloadable/online titles are the future!

11:08


Comment From takeflight

I started Journey late at night but couldn't stop myself from completing it in one sitting. I had to know her fate.

11:08


Comment From Nosada

i thought you guys did a good job with the trophies for the game.

11:08


Comment From mr_Obtuse

There is no experience like it booga. not even slightly. good luck

11:08


roBin:

Thanks, Nosada! Chris Bell (our newest employee) focused on collision, and trophies. He worked very hard on them!

11:09


Comment From Cadavir

I understand wanting to stay small, but what if you did a teamup with another developer for something big budget? Maybe Level-5 or another team almost as innovative as you.

11:09


Comment From Busca-Cabezas

Will there be any ADD ON, DLCs?

11:09


roBin:

You never know what may happen in the future - of this I'm sure!

11:09


Comment From Alin

The game seems a lot like a journey through life. You meet friends, you get into trouble , you succeed and you are close to failing. The end is the same for all, the Journey is what matters.

11:09


scea_bdunn:

Busca, and everyone else asking about DLC -- to reiterate, Journey is a stand-alone experience, and there will be no additional DLC for it. But we hope you spend a lot of time with it and find all of the secrets it has to offer

11:09


roBin:

Yes, Alin - this is a very eloquent way to say it.

11:09


Comment From LA Rogue Beatz

Haha, it's scary for adults as well. There was one point I had to stop and take a breathe because my heart was racing so much.

11:10


Jenova:

Alin, Journey of a life time is what we aim for internally.

11:10


Comment From bane126

I love your games and even got my wife into gaming by introducing her to flOw and Flower, i cannot wait to play Journey tonight!

11:10

11:11


Comment From Zero

what was the toughest part in the development cycle?

11:11


Jenova:

Zero - similar to the game itself, the end is the toughest.

11:11


roBin:

Yeah, wrapping the game was tough.

11:11


Sushi_Pirate:

Hey everyone, TGC needs to continue their personal journey soon, so send in your final questions!  

11:11


Comment From Nosada

i've been telling all my friends about Journey and encouraging them to download it. i can't say enough good things about this amazing experience.

11:11


Jenova:

and there's a moment we found ourselves lost in the middle.

11:11


Comment From Bolegium

not a question, but I think keeping games short and focused experiences is much more respectful and accessible to players!

11:12


roBin:

Thank you Nosada - and everyone!! Your support, positive feedback and general enthusiasm about Journey and TGC are the reason we do what we do!

11:12


Jenova:

we do respect our player's time so we won't do things that's not absolutely necessary. No grinding

11:12


Comment From Niklas

I want to thank you for this game and it`s experience. At a party we had the chance to play the game and it ended, that the half of the party was sitting there and we played journey twice. I can`t wait to buy the game and play it again and again...

11:12


Comment From Patrick K.

will TGC be at PAX East?

11:13


roBin:

Much of the team will be at the Smithsonian Art of Games exhibit the week of March 15

11:13


scea_bdunn:

Niklas, that's awesome! I'm having a little get-together at my place tomorrow night too, to play Journey on the big screen

11:13


roBin:

We will have a fan event there - check our Facebook or Twitter for deets in the next week!

11:13


Comment From Spazgadget

I absolutely LOVE the element of exploration and "mystery" in your titles.  The sense of not really knowing where you are or what to do, and not being spoon-fed.  It seems to be a constant thread in your titles.   Please never stop befuddling us!

11:13


Comment From Bolegium

will there may be a showcase of Journey at the MoCa in Shanghai in the future?

11:13


roBin:

We certainly hope so!

11:14


Jenova:

Bolegium - maybe. I'll try to make it happen.

11:14


Comment From mr_Obtuse

how can i send more money and support to TGC... also is there any more q&a or interviews done before which might tell the story of the inspiration for the game concept. i really enjoyed the paintings story for Flower

11:14


roBin:

Just tell your friends to give Journey a try! Tell people who don't think of themselves as "gamers"! Spread the word!

11:14

11:14


Jenova:

mr_Obtuse - tell as many of your friends, gamers or not to play it. It's meant to be played by everyone.

11:14


scea_bdunn:

Mr Obtuse, the best way to keep up with the team is to follow them on Facebook. I know they love to hear from fans! https://www.facebook.com/thatgamecompany

11:15


Comment From Oman_Gamer

The graphics of the game is mind blowing , really some places I just said @WOW@

11:15


Comment From Kojima390

How did TGC come up with the sand surfing in Journey? It is amazing!

11:15


scea_bdunn:

Be sure to check out the 2 developer diary videos, and look for interview coverage from GDC going up on different websites this week.

11:15


Jenova:

walking in the sand can be boring, so we want something fun to do.

11:16


Comment From NLombardo

Thanks for all your hard work guys. Inspiring work! Please sell a 'Journeyer' toy so I can have it on my desk for inspiration!

11:16


Comment From Marc

Finally, not a question, but a request: PLEASE do NEVER stop enriching players lifes the way, you do right now! Best wishes, Marc

11:16


Comment From Cris

I just wanted to write and tell you how much I enjoyed the game.  Every aspect was beautifully polished and it is amazing how the music and game meshed so perfectly.

11:16


Comment From Boogalicious

Have you ever considered to make a physical disc release? Like a collection of all three titles.

11:16


scea_bdunn:

Booga, it's something I'd love to make happen, but can't promise anything at this time

11:16


Jenova:

Boogalicious - yes, we are trying to figure out the logistics

11:16


Comment From Jake

Oh man, I LOVED the sand surfing! I would adore a standalone editor to create more areas for sand surfing

11:17


Comment From Jake

Which day will you be at the Smithsonian? Saturday the 17th?

11:17


roBin:

Yes! Saturday the 17th!

11:17


Comment From JackRabbit

hey guys I just wanna say I have been a fan since Flower and Journey blew me away! I mean I didn't know what to expect but it was truly an amazing emotional experience. Ive told all my friends to get it when it comes out

11:17


Sushi_Pirate:

We'd like to thank you all for your time today.  We've really enjoyed reading all your questions and comments, and hope you have too.  Stay up to date on all the latest with Journey at http://blog.us.playstation.com/tag/journey/ or follow the team on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/thatgamecompany Thanks again!

11:18


roBin:

Thank you so much everyone - you guys are great!

11:18


scea_bdunn:

Thanks, everyone!

11:18


Jenova:

Thanks for everyone that joined the live chat. Thanks for playing our games!

11:18


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Lombax Warrior
Registered: 02/07/2012
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Re: Journey Live Chat with thatgamecompany Friday March 9th

Mar 10, 2012

What are your favorite parts of Journey?

I have many by my favorite is sliding on the sand down hill while day turns into night and night into day! So breath-taking. It brought tears to my eyes. ThatGameCompany was able to engage me in a very emotional way to this game. It truly is a unique gaming experience!

Did anyone come up with their own story of what the journey is all about?  Would love to hear your interpretations

YAY Journey!!!

*~Rogue Beatz~*

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