Q&A

EDGE - - THE MAKING OF... - Ian Flatt Pro­duc­tion di­rec­tor

What was it like for Sword­fish aban­don­ing Covert

One and mov­ing on to Blood On The Sand?

Given that show’s cast we thought, ‘We’re onto a win­ner here, it has no chance of fail­ing.’ But it just didn’t hit at all. How­ever, Sword­fish had al­ways worked that way. It came from a men­tal­ity we had start­ing out as a small in­die, when we had to be lean to sur­vive. Every­one was very flex­i­ble and pre­pared to re­set and go at a new ti­tle from a new an­gle.

How of­ten would you hear from 50 Cent or the G-Unit while you were mak­ing the game?

Orig­i­nally we made a kind of proof of con­cept, par­tic­u­larly based around the set­ting, to show we could put the 50 Cent char­ac­ter in there and make it work and make sense. Af­ter that there were set points, nor­mally around the big re­lease builds, that they’d be shown the game by one of our guys and pro­vide their feed­back and cri­tique, and we’d go away and work based off of that. ‘We like this, we don’t like that, next build we want to see some things im­proved, some things re­moved,’ and so on.

How do you feel about the game, par­tic­u­larly the fi­nal part of de­vel­op­ment, in hind­sight?

It worked out OK so it’s easy to re­mem­ber those times as nicer than they were. But those driv­ing lev­els didn’t work un­til very late in the day and it was the first time for us that we’d had to rely on a lot of out­sourc­ing. We had maybe four months left to go on it when Ac­tivi­sion and Vivendi merged and de­cided that sev­eral stu­dios – al­most every­one in Europe, in fact – were go­ing to be dropped and sold off to other pub­lish­ers. It’s tes­ta­ment to the team that they stayed and fin­ished the game.

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