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View Article - Interview with the MM2 Game Designers

Interview with the MM2 Game Designers
=================================================================================================

Midtown Madness 2 Chat
6 September 6:00 PM

=================================================================================================
Copyright 2000 MM2 Central - http://mm2c.btwracing.com
Thanks to Draconian
rippance@btwracing.com for questions
=================================================================================================
=================================================================================================

+Julia@ZEvents> Welcome to the "Meet the Game Designers of Midtown Madness 2 " Chat! We will start at 6pm PST (about 40 mins)
+Debbee@ZEvents> Jay Panek, Gabriel Valencia, and Fred Markus will be online to talk about the newest game soon to hit store shelves. Learn how they created the new London and San Francisco courses complete with historic landmarks.
+Debbee@ZEvents> Jay Panek has been at Angel Studios for almost three years.
+Debbee@ZEvents> In that time he has worked
+Debbee@ZEvents> on Midtown Madness 1 and 2 and Ken Griffey Jrs. Slugfest.
+Debbee@ZEvents> He's worked in games and animation for the last 8 years
+Debbee@ZEvents> Gabriel Valencia has worked on Stonekeep, Starfleet Academy, Die by the
+Debbee@ZEvents> Sword, Savage Quest and is currently the lead programmer for Midtown Madness 2.
+Debbee@ZEvents> Turn ons: boogie boarding, School House Rock, and Master of
+Debbee@ZEvents> Orion 2.
+Debbee@ZEvents> Turn offs: inflation, blatantly corrupt politicians, and gas
+Debbee@ZEvents> and electric price hikes.
+Debbee@ZEvents> Joining them tonight is Fred Markus, Game Design Director
+Debbee@ZEvents> Welcome to the Zone Jay, Gabriel! and Fred
+Debbee@ZEvents> Ready for questions?
Gabe@Midtown2> hiya y'all!
Jay@Midtown2> Hey everybody
Midtown_fred> Hi!
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga AKA
AKA_bootXL> Hi there Angel Studio guys! What happened to the car Physics Realism setting for MM2? Every vehicle drives more true to real life which makes it slightly harder to preform stunts.
Gabe@Midtown2>
Jay@Midtown2> The physics were totally redone...
Jay@Midtown2> The physics are so good now, the need for a slider wasn't necessary...
Gabe@Midtown2> In MM2, some cars drive realistically, some are tuned more for fun.
AKA_bootXL> So you wanted them to have more real world type driving?
Gabe@Midtown2> The DoubleDecker is tuned for fun, for example.
Jay@Midtown2> We want them to be fun.
Midtown_fred> Not really, some cars only, for experienced players.
AKA_bootXL> It seemed more fun to customize the settings for me.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup AKA?
AKA_bootXL> Thanks, nope.
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Zippo
Midtown_fred> It would create a lot of problems in fine tuned crash courses.
Plain_ol_Zippo> heya , in MM2 do the pedestrians still jump out of the way? or can you knock em down? cause I saw a SS and could of swore I saw pedestrians flopped on the ground. Also, will the cars have new damage textures?
Gabe@Midtown2> nice nick.
Plain_ol_Zippo> ?
Gabe@Midtown2> In MM2, the peds dive out of the way.
Jay@Midtown2> You can't hit the peds
Plain_ol_Zippo> alright, and the damage textures?
Jay@Midtown2> The damage textures have changed from MM1...
Gabe@Midtown2> Honestly, it's better that way... you can herd the peds around.
Jay@Midtown2> We apply damage to the area of the vehicle that gets hit and...
Plain_ol_Zippo> lol
Jay@Midtown2> we also have breakable parts for the new cars
Plain_ol_Zippo>
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup Zippo?
Plain_ol_Zippo> nope
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga RTL
RTL_ukeeg> Hi, I was wondering that in future versions of Midtown Madness, you might consider to base the game on some Canadian cities. For example Toronto or Montreal?
Jay@Midtown2> We're shooting for Tahiti
Gabe@Midtown2> I hear the driving is excellent there...
Midtown_fred> If it's really fun to drive there, then why not? It's all about the driving experience.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
RTL_ukeeg> no thanks
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga RT
Gabe@Midtown2> rt?
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Zolk
Zolk> Hi! Do you know how long it will be before a VCK tool is released for MM2?
Jay@Midtown2> We just finished the game and are planning a little time off...
Jay@Midtown2> The next thing we work on will be the trial version...
Gabe@Midtown2> That's a demo, in english.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
Zolk> yes..
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga
Zolk> Do you know when mm2 will be released? I've heard several different dates.
Jay@Midtown2> Actually, I don't know for sure.
Gabe@Midtown2> It should be by the end of the month, though.
Zolk> Okay, thanks.
Zolk> noq
Jay@Midtown2> Check the Midtown page on MS site for more info
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga HYE
HYE_Cruiser> Hi I was wondering how the damage has been improved from MM1 to the new Midtown Madness 2 do buildings get damaged? and Is there an Instant replay option??
Gabe@Midtown2> Damage has been improved.
Gabe@Midtown2> Cars has breakable parts that fall off.
HYE_Cruiser> and the instant replay?
Gabe@Midtown2> The buildings only lose stuff like awnings.
Gabe@Midtown2> We ran out of time to support it.
Jay@Midtown2> There's a lot of glass to break and the buildings are more interactive than in MM1
Jay@Midtown2> You can even get on the roofs!
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
HYE_Cruiser> oh ok, so overall the flying parts and breakable building make for a more fun driving experience
Gabe@Midtown2> Roof jumping is really fun.
Midtown_fred> Oh yes it is!
Jay@Midtown2> Breaking stuff is good
HYE_Cruiser> cool
Jay@Midtown2> flying parts is good
Midtown_fred> Lots more shortcuts, hidden places...
Gabe@Midtown2> There's a special treat when you hit a tree for those of you who were at the last Zone chat.
HYE_Cruiser> ok thanx
jedrgy> Ok I have 3 Questoins 1) Will Midtown Madness 2 be ported to X-Box (Please anwser)
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga jedrgy
Gabe@Midtown2> We don't know, honestly...
jedrgy> Ok I have 3 Questoins 1) Will Midtown Madness 2 be ported to X-Box (Please anwser)
jedrgy> oh ok
jedrgy> so they don't let you konw?
jedrgy> know
jedrgy> 2) Is it possible for me to get a beta copy of MM2?
Gabe@Midtown2> We don't handle the Beta program, MS does.
jedrgy> ok thanks
jedrgy> last one
jedrgy> 3) How will MM2 run on this system: 733/P3 128ram 32meg TNT2? Thats all, THANKS!!! noq thanks for your time!
Midtown_fred> It's gonna run awesome!
Jay@Midtown2> killer
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga BD
Transit_BD108> Hey Guys! I have 3 questions. #1 When will Midtown Madness 2 Start appering on shelves on Northern BC (Canada)? and #2 is there any way of getting on to Alcatraz? #3 Will parked cars be able to pull out and drive or will they remain idle in MM2?
Jay@Midtown2> #1 I should know, but I'm sorry I don't...
Transit_BD108> lol alright.
Transit_BD108> 2 and 3?
Gabe@Midtown2> You might be able to make it to Alactraz. It's all about the Ferry... I'm not sure though.
Jay@Midtown2> keep checking the midtown page on the MS site for updates
Midtown_fred> #3 nope, they stay idle.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
Transit_BD108> 1yes
Transit_BD108> yes
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga
Transit_BD108> do you guys have some sort of Chat program like IOCQ or MSN IM that I can contact you on?
Transit_BD108> ICQ*
Gabe@Midtown2> Our sysadmin blocks it behind our firewall..
Jay@Midtown2> We're behind a fire wall.
Midtown_fred> yes, we are behind a .... firewall.
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Awesys
Transit_Awesys> Hey there! I have 2 questions... What happened to that 50's Cadillac that was going to be in the game? and is the AI heavier for the final version so they dont go flying?
Gabe@Midtown2> Ouch!
Midtown_fred> You mean the ambient traffic?
Jay@Midtown2> The license for the Caddillac fell through...
Transit_Awesys> yeah
Jay@Midtown2> It was one of our favorites.
Gabe@Midtown2> I really liked it...
Transit_Awesys> looked cool too
Transit_Awesys> flup..
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga
Transit_Awesys> and whats with the moon rover
Transit_Awesys> i've heard some stuff about it in the tuning files and such
Midtown_fred> It's been made light because it is boring to be stopped all the time when you race at 180Mph!
Transit_Awesys> so they will still go flying?
Midtown_fred> Not really. They are light but they are not flying.
Jay@Midtown2> It burned in a launch pad accident
Transit_Awesys> lol
Transit_Awesys> but seriously?
Gabe@Midtown2> It was a weather balloon.
Midtown_fred> It did!
Transit_Awesys> thats cool
Transit_Awesys> anywys..
Transit_Awesys> thanks, and in the meantime and between time, have a great day, and happy programming... noq nice meeting you
Gabe@Midtown2> 8-p
Jay@Midtown2> Thanks transit
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga edge
midtown_edge> #1is the traffic going to have damage textures? #2 will cars driving around park at all or just keep going?
Midtown_fred> #2?
Gabe@Midtown2> They're hurting on the insides...
Jay@Midtown2> They are karate cars, they bruise on the inside
midtown_edge> the traffic in cruise will they park
Gabe@Midtown2> There are parked cars.
Midtown_fred> No, they just keep going.
Midtown_fred> Karate cars don't park either.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
midtown_edge> do they just drive in circles
Midtown_fred> No, they drive around the entire city...
Jay@Midtown2> No, the ambient vehicles drive all over the city...
midtown_edge> will it work on my 386
Gabe@Midtown2> No, they drive around trying without breaking the traffic laws.
Jay@Midtown2> they aren't on a predetermined path.
midtown_edge> ok
Transit_Carrier> In the beta, I noticed that trees explode no matter how fast or slow you are going. Will this be fixed, or was it meant to be this way?
Gabe@Midtown2> In MM1, one of the major complaints was that trees stopped you.
Gabe@Midtown2> So, for gameplay, we made them not get in the way!
Transit_Carrier> k, noq. Thanks
Jay@Midtown2> It's fun as hell to make a tree explode...
Transit_Carrier> Yeah
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga TUF
TUF_Binden> Is the game going to Support downloaded cars? is MS going to release new cars and citys that can be downloaded into MM2?
Gabe@Midtown2> The game supports downloading cars of the MM2 format, but I don't know what MS's plan are regarding cars and cities.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
TUF_Binden> Has the cop AI been improved alot? will the call other cops to help out cathc the player
TUF_Binden> catch*
Gabe@Midtown2> They're alot smarter than they used to be.
Midtown_fred> Yes it has. They are not as crazy.
Jay@Midtown2> The cops have been enhanced to chase the opponets as well...
TUF_Binden> Ok
TUF_Binden> thanks , noq
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga CPK
Jay@Midtown2> and to have more regard for the surroundings
CPK_fordfan_1> Hi There,#1How big well San Fransisco and London be in MM2.? #2 Well there be any cool little trail's/shortcut's.?#3 How well it run on a 1Gz 128MB RAM 30 GB Voodo 5.#4 well cop�s drive around or well they be parked like in MM1.?
Midtown_fred> #2 Tons of shortcuts!
Jay@Midtown2> SF and London are HUGE!!!
Gabe@Midtown2> #1 they're big
CPK_fordfan_1> lol
Gabe@Midtown2> #1 our C&R games stretched through the whole city and it take a while to cross them!
Jay@Midtown2> There's so much to find in each city and so much to interact with
Gabe@Midtown2> #2 there are a TON of shortcuts.
Midtown_fred> Yeah, a TONNNNNNNN
CPK_fordfan_1>
Jay@Midtown2> Cops are parked as they were in MM1...
Jay@Midtown2> cruising cops is on the list.
Gabe@Midtown2> #3 You have better hardware than I do.
CPK_fordfan_1> lol
Gabe@Midtown2> #4 The cops lay in wait, just like real life.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
CPK_fordfan_1> no thank's
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Elwood
Elwood_bl> Hi! What new surprises can we look foward to in Midtown Madness 2? And, I hate people that pirate software, what has been done to protect against pirating MM2?
Gabe@Midtown2> Elwood!
Gabe@Midtown2> I think the coolest new thing is Crash Course.
Midtown_fred> More races! More shortcuts! More protections!
Jay@Midtown2> If I told you the surprises, they wouldn't be surprises!...
Elwood_bl> lol
Jay@Midtown2> I will tell you this...
Jay@Midtown2> The best view of SF is from the roof of the Hyatt...
Elwood_bl> cool, and the pirating?
Jay@Midtown2> HOw you get there, is up to you to find
Gabe@Midtown2> Crash Course is a series of events that teach you some driving tricks, but they're really fun too.
Gabe@Midtown2> My favorite CC event is "River Dancing" where you have to cross the Thames by jumping barges.
Elwood_bl> Are you able to keep the freeloaders from copying MM2?
Gabe@Midtown2> As for pirating, we shrink wrap that box a bunch.
Elwood_bl> lol
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga 101
_101_BZ_22_> Hi Jay, Gabe, Fred; what version of 3D Max will you need to make cars for MM2? Flup plz...
Gabe@Midtown2> We used Max 3.1
_101_BZ_22_> Can you use Version 2.5 like in Mm1 and.... Did Jay ever get onto the Stadium in MM1?
Gabe@Midtown2> He did, but he got caught.
Jay@Midtown2> Please don't bring that up again
+Debbee@ZEvents> f;up?
Midtown_fred> You can do anything with the cars you guys made!
+Debbee@ZEvents> opps flup?
_101_BZ_22_> No ty
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga NOTA
NOTA_Ram_Air> Hi guys! Will the game have more races other than the ones on mm1(like checkpoint, blitz, etc.)?
Midtown_fred> Yes Crash courses.
Jay@Midtown2> Yes, MM2 has a new single player event called Crash Course
Jay@Midtown2> MM1 shipped with 64 race events...
Gabe@Midtown2> First of all, there's two cities' worth of the Checkpoint, Circuit, and Blitz races...
Jay@Midtown2> MM2 has 180!!!
Gabe@Midtown2> Then there are the Crash Course events... each one is different.
Midtown_fred> Yes, I had to tune 180 races!
NOTA_Ram_Air> cool
Jay@Midtown2> Crash Course lets you train to be a stunt driver in SF or a cabbie in London
Gabe@Midtown2> One of my favorites is "follow that car"
Jay@Midtown2> The events are designed to isolate specific skills necessary for winnig races
Gabe@Midtown2> where you have to stick to an opponent like glue. It's really a different skill than
Gabe@Midtown2> you're used to from regular racing.
URT_RacerX> Hi Guys!#1will there be a leagal cruise in one of the MM's in the future? #2 How many stuntz will there be? #3 what kind of cars will there be?
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga URT
Jay@Midtown2> #2 the number of stunts are unlimited...
URT_RacerX> :-)
Gabe@Midtown2> #1 Some people like to follow the rules, and if you do it right, cops don't bother you.
URT_RacerX> good
Jay@Midtown2> it depends on how hard you drive the car.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
URT_RacerX> will the people yell at you if your driving leagly?
Jay@Midtown2> Probably, as they do in real life
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Ed
__EdBase__> Nice to meet you. Have you ever been accused of promoting imprudent driving?
Gabe@Midtown2> Fred has.
Midtown_fred> Yes, I had some problems with a journalist.
__EdBase__> well... I'm journalist...
Midtown_fred> Tried to make me say the game was all about road rage...
Gabe@Midtown2> You're "a" journalist?
__EdBase__> When will we enjoy a Midtown Madness race in an European city? What about Paris or Madrid? yup
Midtown_fred> Ha, Paris...
Midtown_fred> I used to live in Paris. That would be nice.
__EdBase__> or lisbon?
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga topbob
topbob> 1)Hi! do you think the Midtown Madness 2 be 'Game of the year'? or have no idea? 2)Will the player have blinckers?
Midtown_fred> Hell YEAH!
topbob> cool
Jay@Midtown2> As long as the city is interesting and lends itself to fun gameplay, any city is possible
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup
+Debbee@ZEvents> ?
Midtown_fred> Really, there's more in MM2 than in any other racing game.
topbob> no, thanks
topbob> noq
Gabe@Midtown2> I like it.
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Tequila
Tequila_RC> I worship at the temple of Midtown...you guys are gods. I was surprised you finished the sequel so quickly and with so much more content. For each of you, what's your favorite new addition/feature to Midtown 2? flup, please.
Gabe@Midtown2> Thanks, man!
Midtown_fred> Thanks!!!
Gabe@Midtown2> Like I said, I dig the crash course. I also like all our new announcers...
Jay@Midtown2> The vehicle physics are my favorite enhancement...
Gabe@Midtown2> some of them are pretty funny.
Midtown_fred> I worked hard on the power slides. I LOVE POWER SLIDES!
Jay@Midtown2> The game is about racing and the vehicles in MM2 handle GREAT!...
Gabe@Midtown2> Jay can still power slider better.
Jay@Midtown2> They are fun as hell to drive.
Midtown_fred> The AI is also much better.
+Debbee@ZEvents> flup?
Tequila_RC> What cities would you do for Midtown 3? And are you guys currently developing for the PSX2? Thanks, guys. Midtown rocks. noq.
Jay@Midtown2> The cities themseleves are incredible...
Midtown_fred> Don't know yet.
Jay@Midtown2> You get SO much air in SF, we almost qualify as a flight sim
coolturtl> Hello, I have quite a few questions for you, if you don't mind...
coolturtl> first, Will you continue to update MM2 with new cars, maybe some tracks, or freeware to make them, like DF2...?
Midtown_fred> Go ahead.
Gabe@Midtown2> what's df2?
coolturtl> Delta Force 2
Midtown_fred> The game supports both.
coolturtl> alright...
coolturtl> second, will the cops use the bullhorn, the files were in the core.ar file in MM1. flup, plz
Gabe@Midtown2> They have city specific sirens, but they don't talk.
coolturtl> another thing, Judging by your screenshots, the city looks pretty simple... another thing, will you make it more complex (eg: more objects, more traffic cars, etc...) flup
coolturtl> whoops sorry
coolturtl> too many another thing
Midtown_fred> Try it! It is way more complex than you think.
Jay@Midtown2> The cities are anything but simple...
Gabe@Midtown2> They cities are pretty deep. Check out the Underground subway in London...
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Jhett
Jhett_IG> Hello, Jhett from IntelGamer.Com- What kind of difficulties and problems did you face in development? Also, what features did you wish could have made it into the game but didn't? Flup please
Jay@Midtown2> They have more hidden areas, more interactive buildings, more shortcuts and are bigger
Midtown_fred> From the gameplay point of view, tons of races and vehicles to create and tune.
Gabe@Midtown2> I really wish we'd been able to get the '59 Caddie license.
Jay@Midtown2> There is so much that we put into the game...
Gabe@Midtown2> Still, we got some cool cars like the AudiTT...
Midtown_fred> Reworking physics for better power slides and reverse 180s.
Jay@Midtown2> it took extra effort to bring it all together...
Midtown_fred> That was hard to tune, the reverse 180 thing...
Midtown_fred> But it is SOOOOOO FUN!
Jay@Midtown2> luckily, we have a qulaity team at Angel, and the MS team we worked with was very professional...
Gabe@Midtown2> Even Fred.
Jay@Midtown2> so it minimized the problems.
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga AKA
AKA_Racer> ty
AKA_Racer> 1) I was wondering how difficult it may be to release a new location city for Midtown Madness 1. I am sorry to say I was dissappointed when I recieved my beta ...
AKA_Racer> As much of a Hordcore MM Fan that I am, it hurts to say but as others may agree(or not) it's the physics that turns me away from MM2 ;(
AKA_Racer> also.....
AKA_Racer> 2) If it's not possible for you guys to release a location for Midtown Madness 1, is it possible to show us how to make them? Or maybe transfer some MM2 data *cough* San Fransisco/London *cough* over to MM1 ?
AKA_Racer> and for the flup plz....
AKA_Racer> 3) Will the quality of the mini-map be improoved? Im talking MM1 Style quality?
Jay@Midtown2> The physics didn't allow power slides in MM1....
Midtown_fred> Physics were tune till the last second so you should see a lot of improvement on the final.
Gabe@Midtown2> #3 the map rotates and zooms now, if you like.
Jay@Midtown2> The physics now give you more control of the vehicle. You have to counter steer during power slides...
Jay@Midtown2> and you can do reverse 180's...
Jay@Midtown2> it definatley takes more skill.
Midtown_fred> Depends on the car you pick!
+Debbee@ZEvents> ga Quik last question
!QuiKShifTeR> Hey mr Gabe. Jay and Fred! My Name is QuiK! We are friends I Love Legal Cruize in Midtown Madness 1 but the cars hit you from the back and its not fun ! Will MM2 Fix that? and Will cops Kill you if you dont stop when the do the siren thingy.. Thanks!
Midtown_fred> Depends on the car you pick!
!QuiKShifTeR> i have an amusing mind
Jay@Midtown2> The cops aren't as reckless as they were in MM1, but they still take care of business!
+Debbee@ZEvents> I'd like to thank Jay, Gabe and Fred for spending time with us tonight. I'd also like to thank all of you for being here as well! Good Night!
+Debbee@ZEvents> I'd like to thank Jay, Gabe and Fred for spending time with us tonight. I'd also like to thank all of you for being here as well! Good Night!
Midtown_fred> Bye!
Gabe@Midtown2> Au Reservoir!
--Jay@Midtown2> Adios


Copyright 2000 MM2 Central
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