There are a
lot of musicians working at Harmonix, how would you say that helps the game as
an experience to gamers?Given that
the people here are in bands themselves and are musicians, their desire to show
the authenticity of rock and to show how awesome it is to make music and how
rock and roll it is – that’s first and foremost above the excess, sort of
cartoony aspects of it, and that’s huge for them.
With so many
people in bands, you have to wonder: how do you get things done? Not to say
people in bands are lazy and shiftless, but more just how are people able to
strike that balance between their professional lives and their artistic lives?
How does the rock and roll thing translate to the workplace?
First of all, I will say I have
never worked in a place like this. I’ve even worked at other video game companies.
It’s totally different. As far as the “rock” aspect of here, I think a lot of
the people who work here who are musicians are very passionate about their
music, and they take that same passion for their own music to making this game.
It translates very well to being another project that they can be very
passionate about, like their side project is Harmonix. Which just kicks ass.
Everybody is really dedicated to making our games as perfect as possible, to
really putting 100% into it. But we have a really good time, too, certainly.
Because everybody’s in bands [laughter].
What did you
all at Harmonix take from your experience making Guitar Hero that you felt helped you with Rock Band?
I think for a lot of Rock Band we mainly went back to ground
zero, to start over again and rethink the way we put together a game like this.
To really look at all the design choices we’d made and make them better. Change
it up a little bit. Try to get back to the roots.
The difference is [Rock
Band] is such a more cooperative game. It has the competitive mode – where
people can go two guitarists going against each other, two bassists, vocals,
drums – you can have all of that, or you could just play by yourself. But it’s
really about the full-band experience in a lot of ways, which really required a
lot of going back and rethinking the way we did things.