Thursday, 4 September 2014

John Day on Disney Infinity 2.0 Marvel Super Heroes

John Day on Disney Infinity 2.0 Marvel Super Heroes

John Day
 is a producer at Disney Interactive Studios and was in Australia to talk about the production of Disney Infinity 2.0 Marvel Super Heroes (set to release September 2014).

How do you feel Disney Infinity is going?
Fantastic, really.  I’m really pleased with the new figures, playsets, and toybox in Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Super Heroes, and the reception from everyone I’ve talked to has been really outstanding

It’s the free play which seems to keep getting people coming back as well as the endless characters, isn’t it?
The Toy Box does give players a chance to really do…whatever they want, and with our vibrant community constantly creating new and interesting ways to play, there really are unlimited things to do within Disney infinity.  And yes, everyone has their favourite character, and we’re trying to bring them out just as fast as we can.  I’ve been a life-long marvel fan, so working on a game full of some of my favourite characters has been spectacular.

How do you set yourselves limits on what you can do with them – or is the sky really the limit?
I think the goal is to set as few limits as possible.  We’re very connected to our community and try to give them whatever they need to do whatever they’re trying to do.

I’ve read that essentially Disney Infinity was inspired by the way children play with toys – is that always your modus operandi going in to developments?
That’s right – the Disney Infinity Toy Box is, in essence, a digital recreation of a kid’s bedroom floor.  A space with total creative freedom, where all sorts of different toys can coexist and play together.  We continue to try to get closer to that ideal all the time.

The 2.0 Marvel Super Heroes seems like such a natural progression given the success of the Avengers, Agents of Shield and the ongoing Marvel franchises – was it really a no brainer in terms of creative direction?
In choosing where to take Disney Infinity, it comes down to a combination of not only what is popular, but what also makes for great and varied gameplay.  Fortunately, Super Heroes are great for all of the above.  Nevertheless, it wasn’t a simple problem to figure out how to have so many, and ensure that each one was a deep, rewarding gameplay experience.

What do you want the super Heroes to bring to the Disney Infinity table?
Above all I want the super heroes to be themselves.  When you play with Iron Man, I want to have all of his different powers, and for the character to feel authentic.  I also want the promise of many different ways to play – The Hulk and Spider-Man are totally different characters, and so I want those different experiences.

Tell us a little more about the highlights of this pack
Well, in the starter pack, we have the new Avengers playset, which is a fantastic game experience, and we give players 3 of the avengers (Iron Man, Thor, Black Widow) so you can play multiplayer right out of the box.  Outside of the starter pack, we have over 20 super heroes, so hopefully your favourite is in there somewhere.  Either way, that’s a whole lot of different ways to play this game.

What’s the one feature you’re proudest of on this?
We’ve made some new additions to the Toy Box that make building and creating easier than it ever has been before.  With our new builder and creator toys, players can quickly and easily create massive, unique Toy Boxes.

What’s the one character you’ve enjoyed seeing brought to life the most and why?
I have been a Spider-Man fan for as long as I can remember, and of that series my favourite character was Venom.  Our venom character is amazing, he looks and feels great, and his power set in the game is a lot of fun.

It’s pretty cool you’re getting the Guardians of the Galaxy too…and iconic baddies as well. How closely did you work with Marvel on this and how much free reign did they give you?
Marvel was with us every step of the way on everything.  While they always left us to do the work, they were great about providing plenty of feedback to ensure that we were keeping these iconic characters true to themselves.

Where do you see the sets going in the future? You’re constantly adding characters and imagination seems to be the only limit here, is that fair to say?
Absolutely fair to say.  For now we’re focused on delivering a high quality Marvel experience. Moving forward, I’m excited to continue to delve in to the wealth of great characters that Disney has in its pantheon.

What does the future hold for the Disney Infinity set now the technology of PS4 and Xbox One are here ?
These new platforms give us much more power to throw at the game – our Play Sets and characters look better, and our Toy Boxes can be much larger and more complex.

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