ALL ACCESS THREAD - How Video Games Are Made

  • Unlike other forms of entertainment, the video game industry is a relatively secretive industry that keeps its cards very close to it’s chest. It can be like pulling teeth trying to understand the difference in size and scale between publishers and studios, how their pipelines operate, and how this all affects what we end up playing. Publishers are often elusive when pressed about internal affairs and franchises: why did Final Fantasy XV take a decade, how come Nintendo had no plan for Wii U online infrastructure until 6 months away from launch, why are all these Star Wars games getting cancelled?

    Although gamers are becoming more literate towards the systems in place that facilitate the creation of our favourite games, most of us still have to operate on assumptions which can often cause confusion, distrust or resentment towards the developers and publishers at large.

    On the other hand, developers sometimes pull back the curtain to give us gamers necessary insight into how their games were made - What went right, what went wrong, and everything in between.

    The purpose of this thread is to just gather various resources where we can learn more about video game development. Interviews, articles, books, clips, documentaries, websites, development talks - whatever you can think of or come across on a daily basis. Discussion is encouraged.

    When posting, please just put a brief description about the article as I have below.

  • Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made
    by Jason Schreier (Author)

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    If we are talking ALL ACCESS, I believe the author of this book has generated more candid interview access than any reporter I personally know of. This book is extremely relatable if you have worked in the creative industries yourself as parts of the developer interviews feel like mirrors of my own workplace experiences in television.

    You’ll get a wide range of candid storytelling; my favourite chapter includes a deep dive into the history of Bungie - starting in the Microsoft days then descending into internal turmoil during their first crack at independence with Destiny. Likewise, the chapter about CD Projekt and The Witcher III is a wonderful ascent into video game stardom.

    The Story Behind Mass Effect: Andromeda's Troubled Five-Year Development
    by Jason Schreier

    Another insightful all access look at the development of Mass Effect with a strong emphasis on the DICE’s Frostbite Engine and how it isn’t necessarily suitable for RPG games yet as evidenced by the history of Dragon Age Inquisition and Mass Effect Andromeda.

  • Duncan Harris - Dead End Thrills: The Art of Gaming

    “Dead End Thrills is a veteran screen and video capture artist for videogames, with over a decade of game industry experience.”

    I find his photography work is incredible, but in the features section of his website, you’ll see some amazing developer interviews. Some standouts to me include his article about the art of Mirror’s Edge, the history of The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, and building the world in Wolfenstein: The New Order. I very highly recommend this website.




  • Resident Evil 2 developers secretly recorded discussing development details

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    Originally shared by @DMCMaster. This is a great insight for Resident Evil fans. A lot of the developer thought process was explained in this article and video where they talk about things such as fixed cameras being planned for not only RE2 but also RE4!

    Youtube Video

  • Cool idea, this is one is partly a review, so maybe not completely on topic but has a some pretty interesting info about the development process for the first Metro games, which I found very interesting.

    Youtube Video

  • Youtube Video

    I really enjoy NakeyJakey's content for it's ability to critique game design while still being really funny.

  • I can confirm that the NakeyJakey video about Rockstar design is really well thought out and articulated. He doesn't peel back the curtain too much though but its still perfect criticism that could actually help developers make a better game in the future.

  • NakeyJakey's easily my favorite videogame-related youtuber.

  • Originally shared by @bam541

    DF Retro: Killzone 2 Ten Years On - An Iconic PS3 Tech Showcase

    Youtube Video

    This isn't access provided by the developers but Digital Foundry really goes into detail about how Killzone achieved its incredible look and atmosphere way back in 2009. This analysis explains a lot of the techniques the team at Guerrilla used to make everything work using limited PS3 hardware. A lot of this stuff was really new for the time.

  • I often wish there was a Killzone 2/3 remaster collection on PS4. I had a lot of fun with those games.

  • Inside The Creation Of Sekiro's Soundtrack With Yuka Kitamura

    Youtube Video

    In this exclusive Game Informer video, From Software composer Yuka Kitamura takes us inside the process of creating the new soundtrack for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and how it compares to her work on Dark Souls and Bloodborne.

    This is one for the music fans. She goes into software, instruments, hardware, collaboration.

    I personally think Yuka Kitamura should be a gamer household name. Her work is incredible. I never want to press the start button in Dark Souls III or Bloodborne. Her music is so compelling.

  • Haven't watched this yet (or played the game for that matter), but this looks like an interest series about FFIX.

    Youtube Video