Lead weapons artist Gregor Kopka tells us how he created weapons like the Hellshot
“It was clear to me,” Gregor Kopka says, “that Doom is about cold steal. Every gun had to have its own character with defining shapes and mechanics. So for myself, the first breakthrough was when I finally managed to design and implement my first weapon, Hellshot. From then on, I had a feeling that the game was going to be fun.” The lead weapons artists says that, with so many years of experience, he can immediately feel whether or not a game is doing something special. He knew Doom was special. “The weapon pipeline was very streamlined and included testing white box weapons, from a game mechanics perspective, through to the final art asset. Everyone who is included in the gun development process is invited to the game tests and contributes feedback and ideas. Then we do quick 3D thumbnail-type designs, which can also include animated mechanical ideas. As soon as we nail down one direction, we continue elaborating until we make a final paint over.” Gregor’s reason for using 3D art from the beginning was so he could test it in-game. “I think it’s a benefit to start in 3D because you can come up with much better mechanical ideas than you can in 2D, and at the end you can still streamline the design, but on an already proven mechanical concept.” Weapons creator Gregor Kopka designed every gun with its own specific shape and mechanisms.
right moment, exactly when a player’s interest was waning.
“Playing the game everyday is critical,” Hugo says. “You have to have a real understanding of the product you are making. Often times, once you get into the meat of development, the game is ‘all there’, so to speak, and it’s about building on what “What we were striving for,” says Hugo, “was that sort of juvenile spirit of all things bad-ass.” Gregor’s weapon designs are now part of video games’ most infamous arsenal – led by the most infamous of them all, the BFG.