David Jaffe Interview

God of War and Twisted Metal creator David Jaffe recently sat down with GameDaily for an intimate interview that highlights the developers thoughts on videogames as a medium, and the direction he thinks they should be heading. There’s a ton of good stuff in there, not specifically relating to any one title in particular (although they do touch on God of War as a point of reference), and quite frankly Jaffe strikes a chord. His statements are quite probably the key to truly tapping the power of videogames as an artistic medium, that is; exploring and evoking emotion, and playing to the strengths of the interactive format as opposed to borrowing tools from other media. As noted, there’s very little reference to God of War 2, or his unnamed PSP title codenamed, “HL”, but it’s an enlightening read from a very honest and articulate developer:

Click the Full Article link below to read.

God of War and Twisted Metal creator David Jaffe recently sat down with GameDaily for an intimate interview that highlights the developers thoughts on videogames as a medium, and the direction he thinks they should be heading. There’s a ton of good stuff in there, not specifically relating to any one title in particular (although they do touch on God of War as a point of reference), and quite frankly Jaffe strikes a chord. His statements are quite probably the key to truly tapping the power of videogames as an artistic medium, that is; exploring and evoking emotion, and playing to the strengths of the interactive format as opposed to borrowing tools from other media. As noted, there’s very little reference to God of War 2, or his unnamed PSP title codenamed, “HL”, but it’s an enlightening read from a very honest and articulate developer:

BIZ: During the development process where do you get inspiration from?

DJ: Umm, it changes a lot but the last couple of games I’ve worked on, it’s definitely been movies that I loved. Right now I’m really inspired by the idea or question of, “What is the medium capable of?” And I think what it’s been is that I’ve been so inspired by movies the last few games I’ve done, but I’ve realized at the end of the day that those inspirations are really quite shallow and irrelevant when it comes to what the gameplay experience actually is. And so that’s kind of taken me to a new place in terms of inspiration.

BIZ: So did you not originally want cinematics in God of War? For me, the cinematics in that game were really enjoyable and helped tell Kratos’ story beautifully…

DJ: I don’t disagree that they were really good cinemas and they added to the game. The problem is we’re not embracing what makes our medium different; a lot of us don’t even think about it. If you really stop and think about the gameplay and the mechanics, that is what makes our medium our medium; that is what makes our medium special. And as good as these cinemas can be in these games—it’s not because I’m like a purist and I’m like, “Oh, it’s all about the gameplay!”—I’m genuinely looking out for the player’s best experience. If you look at the Nintendo, which I think a lot of people would argue make some of the best games on the planet, there are very, very, very few cinemas in first-party Nintendo titles because they are focused on the interactive experience.

BIZ: If you didn’t work for Sony would you want to design anything for the Nintendo Revolution and that remote controller?

DJ: Yeah I love what I’ve seen of the Revolution so far; I haven’t played it. But I’m very impressed and respectful and grateful that they’re bringing something that innovative to the market. I’m looking forward to it. Would I want to design something for it? I don’t know if I’m that kind of designer; I don’t know if I’m a nuts and bolts mechanic designer. I’d like to take a crack at it maybe one day but frankly from what I’ve seen right now on the PS3—and I just came from a meeting a few days ago where I got to see a bunch of new PS3 games from first-party in development—I’m so excited about the ability to utilize that processing power and utilize that graphics power and try to merge that hardware with some of the more emotional aspects… and I think that’s really only going to be capable on a system like PS3, whereas the Revolution I love and I think it’s very cool. I think it’s going to make more “gamey” games, but I don’t want to make just “gamey” games and so the PS3 I think is really where I want to be right now. So I’m happy to be employed by Sony.

Jaffe seems to be a man who wants more not just from the industry, but for the industry, here’s hoping his PSP project will exemplify the qualities he talks about in the interview. He’s since stopped posting on his blog, preferring to concentrate on development and fearing that he’s becoming more known for what he says than what he does. You have to respect that.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published.