Suomalaisen Red Lynx -studion luoma Trials HD -peli nousi nopeasti todelliseksi Xbox-hitiksi. Peli äänestettiin niin vuoden 2009 parhaaksi Xbox Live Arcade -peliksi että vuoden 2009 parhaaksi suomipeliksi.
Mutta tiesittekö, että pelin tekemiseen osallistui myös kaksi nuorta brittimiestä? Red Lynx kutsui Lee Rowlandsin ja Henry Toftsin Suomeen tekemään ratoja Trialsiin. eDome julkaisee kaksikon upean matkapäiväkirjan, jossa suomalaista elämää ja pelintekoa tarkkaillaan kuukauden ajan kulttuurishokkien värittämän hauskanpidon kautta.
Trials-päiväkirja julkaistaan englanninkielisenä. Jokaisen osan alussa on Red Lynxin Antti Ilvessuon lyhyt suomenkielinen alustus.
Journey to Finland!
Lee Rowland & Henry Tofts
This journal was written by Lee Rowland and Henry Tofts about their time in Finland. It consists solely of their own thoughts and impressions of their experience in Finland, and was not edited in any way by anyone at RedLynx. We thought you would enjoy their feelings and insights into what it feels like to visit and work in Finland for the first time, and how we do things here.
Henry ja Lee kutsutaan Suomeen tekemään ratoja. Syyskuisena sunnuntaina britit saapuvat suomeen ja kokevatensimmäisetkulttuurishokit. Viikko alkaa tutustumalla paremmin tekijätiimiin ja uusien DLC -ratojen dekoraatiolla.
I bought Trials HD on the day of its release after seeing a brief trailer for it on Xbox Live. When I think back it’s certainly the best 1200 points I have ever spent and not just for the game.
The first two maps I made for the Trials HD were simple and short with some physics ideas I wanted to get my head around and experiment with. They were called ‘Doom & Gloom’ and ‘RaidersofWTF’. The third map I made, entitled ‘FancyAPipeOlChum,’ was to become the winning map in the first map competition held by RedLynx and hosted by the people at the Tech Game forums.
A lot of time and energy goes into making a fun and good looking map and most nights I found myself heading to bed around 3 AM. During this time and since, I have been working on my games design portfolio, but Trials HD and its amazing level editor had been stealing my time away and I’m very glad it did!
My invite to Finland came about when I contacted Antti Ilvessuo the Creative Director of Trials HD at RedLynx to give him my address so that they could send me my winning competition goodies. Whenever it is game related or job based I always use my Bsc Interactive Systems & Video Games Design signature at the end of my e-mails. This brought about further e-mails between Antti and I. He asked me to upload some of my finished portfolio work and my CV. I got a phone call the following morning and a bit of a phone interview and Finland was just over a week away! The funny thing Antti liked most about my CV, never mind all my computer experience, was that I put down what my first job was in a garden centre shelving and helping people to their car. I was paid £3.15 an hour when I started work there but I enjoyed it.
Now the amusing story concerning myself and Lee Rowland AKA ‘KatamariUK’ is that we used to work and help manage a videogame store together in the UK a year or so ago. When he said he was off to Finland I said me too! I think we spent most of a day being hyper and laughing about it. Lee is one of the few people I know who has played more games than I have. Whenever either of us creates a map we play test it and give criticism and say what we liked or thought needed improvement, kind of like having a small quality assurance session. To dispel the mystery on the forums, AkatsukiUK (me) and KatamariUK are not the same person!
Imagine playing your favourite game and building new content for it with the built-in editor. Great fun. Now imagine that the owner of the company that made this game is on your Xbox Live friends list and plays your shared custom tracks. Okay, I’m sure it happens for many other games too. Now, imagine that this guy likes your tracks so much that he invites you to his country for over a month, all expenses paid, gives you access to the same editor, but with additional new content. He then asks you to create some tracks to be included in the forthcoming Downloadable Content! That’s what happened to me. One week I was sat at home making some very popular custom tracks for Trials HD on the Xbox 360, and the following week I was in Finland, making more tracks to be included in the actual game!
Found this ill looking Viking at an airport stop on the way to Finland
Arrive in Finland!
Looking forward to meeting the development team
2 hours ahead of UK time
Hotel is great – sauna / squash / wi-fi and large rooms
Arrived at Helsinki Airport. Seems small but good enough. Wandered blankly looking for an exit then got a taxi to the hotel. First observations of Finland were that it looks a little like France but more trees and grass in the built up areas. Very clear, flat and lots of space.
Had dinner at the hotel Spanish restaurant Sevilla. Yes, in Finland and eating Spanish food! Again, as with the area, it’s nice and quiet. Had chicken in a brandy and peppercorn sauce. Also had a pint of the local beer ‘Koff’. Going to find it funny asking for that the whole time! Good beer though. Had some great Churos for dessert with hot melted dark chocolate dip! Whole meal was great but expensive. Need to find cheaper options or we’ll be eating the bed linen!
Meeting RedLynx in the morning at 9.30 so early to bed.
14-09-09 – Monday
9.30am – 7.15pm
First day at RedLynx Studio
Collected by Tero Virtala [CEO] and Antti Ilvessuo Creative Director of RedLynx:
Studio is only 5 – 8 minutes from our hotel so easy walking distance.
We were shown around the studios various rooms and secret games they were working on. No real motorbikes in sight but I did see one parked in the basement car park.
Signed our contracts to work and started off decorating and adding sections to the driving line in Trials HD. Got to see and test all the amazing new stuff in the DLC patch, it was awesome! Plus they asked us what new objects we wanted to be added into the editor!
Great team of people and looking forward to finishing off the track I was decorating.
Finland is so quiet. Lots of space and lots of strange looking buildings. Sort of a Polish/Russian style with Western European aspects. It feels like a permanent Sunday as it is so quiet!
Went into work for the first time today. Was nervous before Antti and Tero met us at the hotel and took us to the office in Tero’s old car.
Nice and friendly place and made us feel really welcome. Showed us around the large office floor and introduced us to all. Good job they all speak good English! Got our own Dev Kit 360 and work area in the same office as Antti, Zagu and Ville. Sorry Sipe, for taking your desk!
Got to see the new DLC objects in the Trials HD editor. Very awesome stuff! Cars are going to go down really well with track designers. Loads of possibilities. Must try to get a Monster truck in the game! Also, we can suggest and ask for new objects and physics for the editor. We have a list :)
Went for a buffet lunch with some of the guys. Still seems a little odd as we don’t speak any Finnish and everyone is a little shy. Sebbi (Programmer) and Jorma (Project Management and Online Integration) chatted quite a bit with us. Great to be able to suggest new additions. One even gets implemented by the end of the day!
Most of the team left about 5.30pm but we stayed until about 7pm decorating tracks that already had the racing line completed. Backgrounds were completely empty though and much of the line objects were floating. This one is to be a kind of warehouse theme, which is quite difficult to do as it is quite a general idea. Next one I do I think will be more specific, i.e.- museum, supermarket, etc. A clock interior would be great!
9.00am – 7.00pm
The track I was decorating has gotten bigger and the driving line has had most of its objects removed. Coming up with new ideas and detail for the junkyard has taken up the entire day. Definitely helps the quality of the track by having the RedLynx developers always checking it and helping out with suggestions. Similar process to home made tracks but more attention is paid to how things look and behave as if they were real world objects. For example you have to hide sunken objects with other decorations.
Can’t help noticing the 500 or so cans of Battery energy drink they must all be addicted too. Must try it while I am here. Testing and minor detail to finish off track tomorrow morning.
Same early-ish start. Got up at 8am to have breakfast. Not so difficult to get up as I couldn’t sleep. Not sure why, the bed is comfy and I was tired. I think my mind is too active thinking about Trials HD tracks!
Went into work at about 9.10am. We were one of the first in. Nice and quiet start. Carried on with the decoration of the Extreme track. I learned that this is Antti’s track and I have to make it look as though it has been constructed as if in real life. Actually fun to do but I would prefer some freedom to alter the track a little. I actually created a final section to the finish line. Difficult to pass but very satisfying when you do. I hope people like it. Hopefully the track is now complete and left at 7pm. Not got a lot of freedom to do much as Antti wants mostly wooden objects.
It turns out that there are seven track designers at RedLynx including Henry and me. Antti, Sebbi, Jorma, Sipe and Zagu make up the other five. Quite impressive to think that all this craziness comes from such a small group of people.
Went for a burger at the wonderfully named Hesburger. Dreary little place in the station with sticky floors! Good job the burger was good. I’m still amazed how everything seems so old fashioned by British standards. It’s like going back in time by 15 years!
Got to see a Trials HD video on Inside Xbox on the 360. Tips on how to clear Inferno 2! Great to see the game get this exposure. Also got to see some cool new stuff coming soon for the game. It should go down really well with the community.
Saw a few squirrels and rabbits running about outside near the hotel. I guess that’s why RedLynx have a pre-occupation with adding squirrels to their games! Maybe they taste good too!
Jatkoa seuraa – to be continued…
Trials-pelisarja on ihastuttanut, vihastuttanut ja raivostuttanut PC-pelaajia jo vuosikausien ajan ensin ilmaisena flash-pelinä ja sittemmin suurta suosiota saavuttaneena kaupallisena tuotteena. Vaikka pakkaus ja hinta ovat vaihdelleet vuosien varrella, laatu on pysynyt korkealla.
Niin se tekee myös nyt, kun Trials-sarja tekee debyyttinsä Xbox 360:lla. Moni odotti PC:n Trialsin kepoista uudelleenlämmittelyä, mutta Redlynx on pelin hengen mukaisesti tähdännyt korkeammalle. Tuloksena on eräs Xbox Liven parhaista peleistä.