Den­nis Gustafs­son


Art di­rec­tor/game de­signer

Which of the three games is your favourite?

The first one. I had more or less a free hand in de­sign­ing Die Hard 1. I like tak­ing on hordes of en­e­mies, pick­ing up weapons, and blow­ing things up. I wanted it to be ac­tion-packed and in­tense. One of my favourite games now is Dark Souls. When you get a break in that game, your palms are sweat­ing and you’re so thank­ful. That’s the kind of feel­ing we wanted for Die Hard 1.

Did you worry about do­ing jus­tice to the film?

I’m a great fan of Die Hard, but I never wanted to com­pro­mise playa­bil­ity in or­der to stick to a movie script. In a game, the player be­comes the hero. So I played it loose. The theme of the movie had to be recog­nis­able, but you don’t want cutscenes and QTEs just to try to get the movie ex­pe­ri­ence. You need to look af­ter the player. If a game tries to be a movie, I find my­self scream­ing at the screen.

Do you think Die Hard was an in­flu­ence on later third­per­son shoot­ers?

I’m not sure. The game it­self is re­ally not that orig­i­nal. It’s es­sen­tially a top-down iso­met­ric shooter. Tomb Raider came out a few months af­ter us, but we had no idea about that at the time. I never played it. It was prob­a­bly more in­flu­en­tial than us. But I was quite happy with what we’d done..

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