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Urban Trial Freestyle Interview

Written by funkyellowmonkey (GP) on . Posted in Video Game Interviews

We had the pleasure of getting some questions answered by Wojtek Belinksi – General Manager of Tate Interactive.

What inspired you to make Urban Trial Freestyle?

At the beginning we were not sure of the direction of game design, but when we started to explore the trials discipline and watched several movies of Julien Dupont, we knew it had to be an urban racer. It started from the model of bike physics that we had managed to achieve with ODE. You really need a good physics model for such a game to be fun.

While developing the game, what was the hardest issue/s that you came across?

It was level design. We did a lot of trials with different level design and different parameters of bike physics, until we reached the right solution. The game has a fast pace, which makes it a great arcade racer with incredible stunts to perform along the track.

What was your "best moment" during development?

It was when the leaderboards started to work on our office's server. We had to test it and the whole team played all day long to beat the scores. Everybody at the office joined the competition. It was like a confirmation that the game is great.

Were you able to incorporate all of the ideas that were proposed?

There were a few, which we thought that might be great, but eventually we decided not to implement them. One idea was to give player control over the tricks, but we decided that it would make the game too complicated and we wanted to keep it as accessible as possible.

If the answer to the previous question is no, would you add those other ideas through DLC or make a possible sequel?

Based on the positive response to our game, we are considering it very seriously.

Now that the title is completed, can you provide any insight into your next title?

Apart from UTF, we are working on two projects, but it's too early to present them.

Any special advice for the fans playing the game, something like a special gameplay tactic or a hidden gem?

One of the things that you can do to increase your scores is to perform wheelie as often as possible. We have set the parameters of the physics in such a way that when you perform a wheelie, the bike gets a bit more powerful and accelerates faster (top speed is the same though). It also works very well when you ride over a ramp to jump up - if you lean backward (like you would do, to perform wheelie) you will jump higher.

A second trick lets you maximize the longest or highest jumps; when you are close to maximum distance, flip the bike ‘wheels up’ (in highest jump) or both wheels forward (longest jump) and you will notice that the score line reaches a bit further.

How do you like the PS3/Vita as a platform for game development?

In terms of technical challenges we did very well. We already had a lot of experience working with Sony on the PSP, and their response to the initial development of Urban Trial Freestyle was very positive, so the cooperation this time was even smoother. As for platforms both the PS3 and Vita are great, lots of power and really great, sharp controllers, which is important
for the game like UTF.

Any advice for people starting out with game development? (Regardless of platform)

Define your area of expertise. If you a technical geek, choose a genre that already exists and see what could be done better. If you are creative one, look for your own ideas. And, if you have both skills in your hand, I’ll be asking you for advice!

...Read the review of Urban Trial Freestyle here

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