Co-founder and creative director, Ready At Dawn
ladders, no jump, none of those things. For us, it was a question of understanding the core of what the character needed to do. If he was going to climb massive walls all of the time, I think we probably would have developed the navigation mechanics even further. But considering all the mechanics we had to build, we went to the core of what Grayson needed to do. For example, in Whitechapel he’s able to climb on certain things, and he’s able to shuffle. All of those things matter because of the gameplay flow that we wanted to build. But the [ability to climb a] ladder, it never felt like we needed it, since there aren’t that many, so it felt easier to do this transition that felt like you’re going from one place to the other. But we decided to give interactivity [in places] where in many games you just watch. A perfect example is when you go through a gate in Whitechapel hospital while escaping the lycan – in most games, you would just go through the gate, watch the cinematics of him closing it, and then keep on walking. We used those interactions to give the player additional involvement in what would otherwise be a passive moment. The game’s approach to nudity, especially male nudity, feels progressive compared to many games, but did it ever create contention internally? There was some debate. We discussed it during the first year we were working on the game. We made it very clear and said, “Hey, everyone, there’s going to be nudity in the game. It’s going to be contextual. It’s going to be done because it’s the way the world was.” And, yeah, it was a little bit contentious, but at the same time, the conversation was very healthy and everyone at the table understood why we were doing it. How important was it to get across the extremity of the violence involved in the knights’ work? We did a lot of research on combat, especially on the melee moves. We hired stunt coordinators and military consultants, and looked at how somebody would really approach something like this. It was interesting to really understand what violence meant to people who are in that world; they think about it more as a tool. More and more movies have had a tendency to have fights that are more realistic, but I remember old films where the fights would last five or ten minutes. In reality, a fight starts and ends very quickly… We wanted that immediacy to be shown in the moves that we did. We wanted to paint a picture of these characters who were almost immune to how violent their lives had become. These things that have become so common to the people that you play that maybe there’s something wrong. Maybe there’s something that is questionable about the way that they treat life.