Skate 2 Developer Interview: GamesMaster Magazine Issue 208

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We want your job!
Pestering the jammiest jobsmiths in the business.

This month, we’ve got out our skateboards out in an effort to be cool, doing ollies and being all gnarly and everything. With this in mind, we talked to Simon Roper, who’s helping to make Skate 2.

01: Hi Simon, tell us about your role on Skate 2.

I work in various areas of the game with engineering. Right now my focus is with presentation as I’m the front-end lead on Skate 2.

02: Sounds tough! Tell us about your typical day at work.

Is there such a thing as a typical day? The work involved varies immensely over the course of the project; right now we’re at the end of Skate 2 and wrapping it up. Copious amounts of coffee, coding, emails and bug-fixing are the order of the day – it’s an intense part of the project but it’s fab seeing it all come together….

03: Tony Hawk has obviously dominated for so long, so Skate was a welcome surprise. How are you planning on moving skating forward?

With Skate 2, the game pushes the engine we created and improves every aspect of the original Skate. There’s double the bag of tricks, 60 FPS, more challenges, new modes and much more. What people can do on a skateboard in real-life is crazy enough, and the bar continues to be raised for what we can incorporate into a game.

04: Is a background in skating essential? Do you hang around skate parks and jot down notes?

Nope, never stood on a skateboard in my life! There are some incredibly dedicated and passionate people around the team whose life revolves around the sport and that’s the key on pushing the game in the right direction. If you stare hard enough you may see the odd skate pro walking through the office…

05: Lastly, any tips on sneaking into the gaming industry?

Passion and enthusiasm are key, as is a smattering of common sense. It’s pretty much the foundation upon which everything else feeds off. When I was younger back in the 8-bit era, I wrote to a few coders on some of the big titles back then and I actually got some replies. I was well chuffed and it inspired me to keep trying!

TOOLS OF THE TRADE:

01: My St Paddy’s day hat – reminds me of enjoying the odd beer or twelve. I like my beer…

02: Coffee – I can’t live without it since moving out to Vancouver

03: Danny Way Skateboard, signed by the maestro himself for working on the original Skate.

04: A random plant – I like to my bit for the environment here and there.

05: An oversized tennis ball. No idea why but its kinda fun.

wwyj208CAPTION: THE WRITE STUFF. Simon’s advice? “There’s no harm in writing to a company or a person directly if you’re really keen. You never know what may happen…”

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