Polish game resource PolskiGamedev published a massive investigation into the development of zombie action Dying light 2 from studio Techland.
Recall that at the beginning of the year the release of the game pushed back indefinitely, because the authors needed time for a quality implementation of all aspects of the project.
Polish journalist Mateusz Witcak chatted with Techland employees who wanted to remain anonymous, writes that the creation process Dying light 2 impossible to call smooth. The game allegedly suffers from serious creative disagreements within the team, various changes and corrections are steadily introduced into almost all its parts, Techland specialists cannot agree with each other, because of which the work stops, and the employees’ motivation steadily falls.
“Dying Light 2 is now a complete mess. First, we focus on the plot, then focus on the gameplay. The main game mechanics are constantly being remade. Morale has finally fallen. The leadership does not understand what it is doing,” an anonymous employee says Techland.
Here, Mateusz hurries to make the necessary remark: the experience of one employee in no way allows us to fully judge the state of the entire game. However, the journalist heard similar rhetoric from several other Techland employees.
Part of the article is dedicated to the screenwriter Chris Avellone. Having announced in 2018 that a well-known industrial leader will take the position of narrative designer, the developers gave the players hope for a very good story component. Avellone himself described the game as “modern middle ages“where”your every choice will have consequences“But even here difficulties allegedly arose. If you believe the sources, then first the scriptwriter more than coped with his task. But gradually the leadership continued to intervene more actively in his work – the result was rather deplorable.
“Do not expect revelations from the plot, this is a very linear story. Bring, bring, talk to that, kill him and come back. Nothing remained of Chris’s original idea. He saw the game as something multi-layered, full of nuances, subtleties and psychological depth” , – the source shares his thoughts.
Under the impersonal leadership mentioned above is actually a very specific person – Adrian Tsishevsky. Having made his way from a marketing specialist, he confidently took a high position in the company and now directs the work of many departments. It was him along with the president Pavel Marchevka accused of over-striving to edit script work of Chris Avellone.
“Disputes on all fronts, the war is for the game fractions, their motivation, characters and their development,” said another Techland employee.
In this case, allegedly, some of Chris’s ideas do not fit the course at which Dying light 2 is developing now.
“Avellone completed the quest chains for one of the regions. The only trouble is that they do not really match the game. His assignments are more like Fallout: New Vegas.“
Journalist Mateusz Witcaka adds, citing another interlocutor, that Adrian Tsishevsky entered into creative disagreements far from just one Avellone.
“Tsishevsky did a lot of good for Techland. His superiors trust him, and he had a lot of responsibilities. He has no responsibilities to cope with. He needs to have a certain mindset, appropriate skills. He just doesn’t. He is a smart guy but he took on too much. “
Techland has left quite a few employees due to inconsistent leadership in recent months. This is largely due to the unattractive working environment inside the studio and the organization of work by Adrian Tsishevsky, who came up with an internal production philosophy, referred to as “result through repetition“
“Every time he stops at some final decision. And then it suddenly turns out that this is not the final option. People give all the best, assuming that they are already finishing work, only to the end is still infinitely far. Many just burn out.” .
However, despite the abundance of dubious episodes, many aspects of Dying Light 2 are now complete or close to this state.
“The result is better than many expect. We are rather moving in the finish line. Many elements are finished. The technology is in place, the combat system is working, the gameplay is functioning.”
On the other hand, the individual components of the project are changing in an absolutely chaotic way.
“The game is literally torn to pieces, no one thinks about the consequences. Of course, let’s redo everything once again, simply because Tishevsky came up with a new idea and he did not bother to notify other departments about it.”
The article says that at the moment, Dying Light 2 does not have a so-called demo with “vertical cut“, designed to demonstrate the combination of key features of the game.
“Depending on who you ask the question about the demo with a vertical slice, you’ll hear that we had five to seven of them. But none of them reflects what the game is like today. It’s constantly Nobody can finally put an end to it and say with confidence: “Here, a good result.”
As for the release date of Dying Light 2, here almost all the experts polled by Mateusz Witcaka almost unanimously agreed that in 2020, the game is not worth the wait. There are several reasons for this. One of them is the imminent release of a role-playing game. Cyberpunk 2077.
It is noteworthy that Along with the start of the investigation by Mateusz Witcaki, many Techland employees received emails in which management urged them not to answer any third-party questions regarding the company and its products, and instead direct all inquiries to the marketing department.
Moreover, after a short period of time representatives of the same marketing department came to Vitchak. First, they assured that the letters sent to employees are a natural working procedure designed to help the team in case of situations where employees are asked questions from the media. Further Techland made an open refutation of the original publication of the investigation.
First, Chris Avellone himself defended himself.:
“I’m happy to work on Dying Light 2 and I’m happy to partner with Techland. Yes, we had to discuss many elements of the game, and yes, many of them really gradually changed. But all this is a natural part of the production process. The plot is a key aspect of Dying Light 2 “For me and for the whole team, it is important that it be done properly.”
Separately, Avellon denies any disagreement with Adrian Tsishevsky.. Another significant employee took the side of Tsishevsky – Bartosha Pendant, senior programmer Dying light 2. According to him, he fully trusts his colleague and does not doubt his decisions. Moreover, Coulomb attributes the key features of the original project to Tsishevsky.
Techland representatives also responded to allegations of an unhealthy work environment and studio conflicts. According to information Ola sonj, heads of marketing, published on PolskiGamedev the material led to a careful study of the situation inside the company, which is now ready for an open dialogue with all its former and current specialists.
As for the general state of the game, then in this respect Techland ready to defend your honor. The PR department of the Polish company explicitly stated that “vertical cut“the game is actually long ready, and since then the project has not deviated much from the general course.
Well, as for the problem of frequent point and global edits of the game process, then, according to senior programmer Bartosh Coulomb, there are no other alternatives.
“A game is a living organism. It’s not such a thing that you can immediately finish and put in a long box. There are millions of variables. Suppose we added the ability to swim in the project. And now we suddenly needed floating enemies. Now we decided to realize the ability to move around car. And we needed to create a working suspension. “
And according to Coulomb’s statements, key gameplay elements, such as a movement system, combat mechanics and the principle of dynamic decisions and consequences, have long been ready and will not disappear from the game.
The bottom line is a rather atypical story. Yesterday, the Polish gaming community was shocked by an article about the difficulties of developing a highly anticipated hit, and just a few hours later Techland executives rushed to defend their brainchild. How exactly to relate to all this information is up to you. In the meantime, you can continue to patiently wait for the release Dying light 2.
See also: “Starting a Brand New Franchise”: EA again hints at Respawn’s continuing Star Wars.
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