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Much More Drastic Things

With time and money running out, Zak struggles to find the path forward.

Published: January 20th 2023

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Episode Transcript

MONICA: How many more left?

-TIM: That's it! -MONICA: That's it?

-MONICA: Oh, okay! -Yeah, good job!

-Yay! -Nice.

TIM: Everybody, uh... come on this way!

I think I saw Santa Claus in here.

Merry Christmas! Open your presents!

Happy Christmas, everybody!

I gotta get mine!

Oh, ho, ho, ho, ho!


JAMES: Zak and other new people have been brought in to...

...make the studio run differently.

EMILY: I don't think her and Zak got along.

That's-- that's all I know.

I will always be the game's stepdad.

JAMES: I'm, like, afraid to talk to Zak.

EMILY: He is trying.

I know he is trying.

...process on the team and how we work together.

There is pretty consistent complaints

that the game is not Psychonautical enough right now.

TAZIO: It's like: "What is this?"

JAMES: Why did that meeting get so tense?

And it turns out, like, there is a lot of stuff

that people are unhappy about.


Look directly into the camera, you are in the shot.


Excuse me?

We will have a working marker by then.

Uh, Alpha is, like, where everything is represented in the game.

And, like, whatever is not in the game by Alpha

theoretically is stuff that we are not going to do in Psychonauts 2.

Um, so, in some sense, it's--

between now and December we have to finish the game.

So, from here to the end of the year.

-I think December 21st... -Ah!

-...will be our Alpha milestone. -Ooh!

-Uh... -Eeh!

-Full of all kinds of exciting things. -Sorry.

-PAUL: I guess we can start with Alpha. -Mm-hmm.

-PAUL: That's a big deal. -Mm-hmm!

It's a point in the game where you really realize

if the ideas of the design team and the level teams are actually feasible.

ANDY: Sure.

ZAK: Uh, yeah, so, I just wanted to go through, um, roughly--

uh, to talk about Alpha for our team.

Um, what it's going to mean, what we are going to work on,

what the game should be-- where the game should be.

Um, so the important date to remember here is our Soft Lock aka--

we might also want to refer to that as content or feature complete,

December 7th.

-ZAK: It will live in infamy, exactly. -ANDY: Oh, how about that? That's good.

ZAK: Um, and we will deliver that December 21st,

and then we will all go have wonderful Christmas vacations

basking in the knowledge that we have delivered

the most amazing Alpha of our careers.

But at a high level, overall,

the game has to be playable from end to end.

All the assets are created, proxied, and placed.

There is no whitebox assets anywhere in the game.

Um, and all the levels have first pass, uh, art and lightning.


We are still figuring out what the boss schedule looks like.

A bunch of the secondary narrative in terms of scripted cutscenes,

dialogues, chatters, reactions, vignettes.

A bunch of that stuff will probably not be in.

And then, I think, design will be spending

a lot of time implementing that stuff during Alpha.

And then we are going to have them do another Bob Z reboot, just for fun.

-[LAUGHTER] -Just for funsies.

Just take another whack at it, see what happens.

ANDY: I don't like that joke.


-ZAK: Too soon? Too soon? -ANDY: Too soon.

I agree.


What is the, like--

What is the thing that dictates, like--

Do we have a set thing in the schedule where the scope of, like:

"This needs to be a Class 1."

We have very little time left.

-[ZAK LAUGHS] -Yeah.

ZAK: Um, so the art team is moving over to strike teams.

So, they just kicked off strike teams,

dogpiling on the Questionable Area and the Gristol level.

And then they'll just be rolling through the whole game

while design furiously works ahead of them.

You and Will are going to work on Gristol, getting it ready for Alpha.

For 3 weeks.

And then... you are fucking done.

-I don't know, man! -ANDY: You will have to make hard calls.

It looks like all of this stuff is pretty much...

...good, except for the Maligula pedestal and statue.

WILL: Yeah...

You guys can talk too, you can tell me that, like, all of the stuff

I'm asking you to get done by Friday is too much.

Oh, this all-- this is all before Friday?

-This Friday? -GEOFF: Yeah.


That's-- that's what we do.

WILL: Um...

I guess, you know...


WILL: We kind of get punted the level

and we get three weeks to make it, like, what it's actually supposed to be.

And that seems a little unfair, you know?

GEOFF: There is not a lot of grounding for this, and...

Maybe, hopefully, putting in a ground,

and a sky, and a horizon line will help that sense of space.

But right now you have just-- you have no clue where you are.

JEREMY: No, it needs-- it needs to be done.

Fill geometry holes in barbershop story corners.

JEREMY: Needs to be done.

Uh, build trapeze chains.

-MOIRA: That's today. -JEREMY: Needs to be done.

NAOKO: Uh...

Many of these things aren't big deal things.

There is just-- it all--

We just need to get to all of them.


KRISTEN: Just message me if you need anything.

LISETTE: What the team is mostly struggling with

is just the total amount of real estate

we have to cover in a short amount of time.

And that's, I think-- the big challenge is:

"How do you hit this much space with this size of the team?"

I think the thing that should be realized though

is that we are in this situation

because their designs have taken so long to begin with.

Like, we didn't get us here.

Like, they--


They set this up for us.

What it comes down to is that, like...

They've essentially had a year and a half

to work on their particular levels.

And we got five months to get it to Alpha.

Um, which is crazy.

All the bickering is not about making it a good game.

It's about, like, making it the best version of the game.

So, it's going to be good.

I'm, uh...

Yeah, I'm curious to see if it'll be great.


PAUL: I like the framing with the orange, that's good.


Old empty tea bottles.



-How is it going? -Good.

NAOKO: Aw! What's all this?! There is so much stuff!

ASIF: There is a lot of stuff now.

It's feeling more like there is game-y stuff happening.

I'm not super worried about this from a design standpoint.

I'm also not super worried about it from an art standpoint.

I think you are going to kick it, you know, right of the pa--

Kick it out of the park? That is not the way the phrase goes.

If you are playing kickball, it is.

It is, yeah, thank you! That was a kickball metaphor, yeah.


But when it comes to trying to hit our December milestone,

I want to make sure that we are just aware of where things are going to land,

so that we feel confident in everyone being able to do their work.

Keep making a video game level.

-You having fun? -I am today, yeah.

Not-- not every day?

-Uh, some days are stressful. -Yeah?

Don't be stressed on your own.

-Come find me, if you are stressed. -Yeah, yeah.

-Let's talk about it, okay? -I will.

ZAK: Uh, we have a ton of stuff.

We are-- so, we are still continuing

to hurdle through all the art strike teams.

And just generally getting design working ahead

to get those levels ready for art,

so that when the strike teams jump on those levels,

we can just pound through all of that.

So, that's been sort of...

uh, picking up speed and improving the game on a daily basis.

Which was really, really awesome to see.

Um, starting to work on a trailer.

Uh, so, the plan right now is that we will be having

a big giant reveal trailer at the Game Awards,

um... in December.

So, we have to have that ready at the end of the year.

PAUL: Alpha and trailer hitting at the same time.

It's bad timing, yeah.


On a more positive note...

we know when E3 is happening next year, and so, like...

we are already planning for that and the next--

Because that's coming right in the middle of our Alpha to Beta time.

Which is going to throw a huge monkey wrench into everything.

LISETTE: Yeah, the plan for Alpha and trailer

was always going to be... shaky.

It feels unfortunate, because a lot of this is just--

like, it's all one-off work, right?

Like, a lot of the-- this is going to--

A lot of effort is going to have to be put into this.

PAUL: This shot has not been set up at all.

So, the camera would be low.


Yeah, very similar, think of the Legolas shot there.

So, the horizon line will be super low.

TAZIO: Probably want some VFX around Sasha's helmet.

PAUL: Yeah, there is a-- there is a few things for this.

This needs more polish on it than we've even put into the main game.

-Correct. -Right? So...

We haven't even gotten to the experience of having to do that type of polish.

Which takes a long time.

Ideally, we would be doing this trailer after our Alpha push.

Where we have enough meat on the bone,

where we are just doing Beta work.

-GEOFF: Mm-hmm. -LISETTE: Um...

LISETTE: But this kind of dropped right as we started Alpha.

-KEIGHLEY: Hello? -Mister Keighley!

Uh, yeah, well, we are making a trailer.

We've got-- we've got scripts.

We have shot lists coming together.

So, it's all happening.

KEIGHLEY: Well, that's great to hear!

PAUL: Do you think it's worth it to go for the VGAs as a platform...

...for that level of connectivity.

I mean, always...

Whenever you can get something out in front of people

to bring awareness to it

that they might not have known the game exists is always good.

I mean, Psychonauts has great word of mouth.

but, I think, that... like, as a broad appeal

there is a lot of people who have no clue what this game is.

So, getting it into something like the VGAs is a big--

it's going to be really helpful for us, so.

GREG: Probably also our publishers will be pretty stoked

about the reaction to it, so.


-It's going to be good. -KEIGHLEY: Yep, because that's, uh...

KEIGHLEY: Was it Starbreeze? Or who is involved in it?

Yep, Starbreeze is our publisher.


ANDY: And his thing is, like: "Look..."

He says: "I'm working on a lot of projects right now,

I'm not worried about yours."

I'm like-- I kind of went: "Really?!"

-He is like: "No." -Thank you?

He is like: "The updates you give me every week

and the progress I'm seeing happening,

I think, you guys are where you need to be."

-I'm like: "All right, good." -Okay, cool, thanks.

So, we have a--

We have received a vote of confidence from our publisher today.

Did he say we could be-- we could fall behind?

-NAOKO: More than we have. -[GEOFF LAUGHS]

Well, honestly, they could probably be like:

"Yeah, whatever. I mean, we are not going to pay you.

We are not going to pay you any more money past this date,

but if you guys want to be late, be our guest."

Like: "Your funeral."

That's really their attitude.

Is-- is, uh...

"Oh, you guys want to push your Alpha out four months, that's fine.

We are not going to pay for it, but go-- go nuts."

That's the deal we had.

So, there is-- there is good and bad here.


GEOFF: Yeah, I think we definitely need to just bring the Quarry forward, yeah?

I don't think we have a choice.

ANDY: I need that shot of that Quarry, for three seconds, or whatever it is.

We'll be running around here, like, everyone screaming, going:

"Oh my god, Geoff Keighley wants his trailer

and we got shit."

JP: Yeah, and then clippers come down from the top and cut away a path

that you then climb up,

and there is, like, clippers patrolling along that path that you have to avoid.

ANDY: Oh, that's good, some people did some logging today after I sent my email.

I like that.


My email of guilt goes out, and it goes: "Pew."


Not much more to say about this than usual.

I feel like, you know, it's always kind of, like, right there,

when we want to be right there.

And I go: "Yeah, we should log our stuff."

And we go: "Yeah, that'd be a good idea."

And then, you know...

Yeah, so, there is only one week left.

All right, so it's five days.

And this is one of...

five sprints to get to Alpha.

So, we gotta-- we gotta knock this--

We have to be hitting, like, plus 80% of work complete on these things.

Ideally, like, 90%, honestly, but...

So, you know... 61% of the time elapsed, and only 33% of the work getting done.


We will have to start simply getting rid of things at some point, so.


When it ends, I'll come look at it.

ZAK: At this point, like, Tim is writing furiously

and we are basically recording and scratching

as fast as Tim can write.

And then getting that into the hands of people

to start implementing in the gameplay.

HOLLIS: "I would rather die than wear socks with sandals."


RAZ: "That's not the change I was going for."

KHRIS: Is that okay?

I'm going to mail this to you right now.


What do you think about talking to Jack?


I love Jack so much! He is a perfect human being.

Is it time to start talking about actually casting and stuff.

Well, um, yeah...

Would you like to have him be... Helmut?


He's got a song and everything!


TIM: And he got a star. Did you see he got a star?

KHRIS: Oh, yeah, I saw that!

What about-- someone mentioned the--

You know, we hadn't really--

I think Elijah still wants to do a part?

I love Elijah.

-He is a perfect human being. -Could he do Gristol?

So, I have questions for you about Bob Zanotto.

Um, what I would like to know is...

So, he had trauma,

and his adaptation to trauma is to self-medicate with alcohol.

And how are we going to handle that in a way that doesn't make it like:

"He is a drunk!"

Mm, mm-hmm.

And maybe be hurtful or harmful to people who have experienced that in their lives.

I mean, I think the emphasis on it is

we are not even emphasizing it as the-- like, a drunk level.

It's more showing that he is drinking,

but emphasizing it as he is breaking connections with people in his past...

...more level.

And there is bottles and stuff, and there is...

images of his personality drowning and being isolated, and stuff like that.

But it's more about how he cut off these connections

with everybody in his life.

And that's what's allowed him

to kind of slip into a depressed, lonely, drinking existence.

JEREMY: Cool, so, uh, this space here, um...


Yeah, looks like it's already been kind of cut down to size.

Ladders are cut, so this will be--

ZAK: Ladders are not cut.

-They are not? -Ladders are not cut.

Oh, okay, the ladder is still here.

Can we get them functioning?

-What's that? -Can we get them functioning?

-Yeah! -Okay.

-Yeah, we will. -[JEREMY CHUCKLES]

Cool, um...

Not a lot happening to it.

GIGI: Is the plan to always have that wall for combat?

The blood gates?

GIGI: Huh?

That is not the intended visual for it, that's just a placeholder.

-But there will be some visual? -Yeah.

Yeah, well, I wanted to--

Yeah, I wanted to ask about that.

So, it does sort of, like, put the shimmery...

you know, blood gate material in your face.

-JP: But, I don't know, how do we feel-- -ZAK: Yeah, which is totally--

That's not a combat question, you know, not an AI question per se, but...

it's definitely a combat question.

Yeah, I don't like it.

We are trying to get rid of blood gates.

It's weird that we have everything blood gated.

I don't consider our core audience to be super combat heavy.

-They seem to be more narrative. -PAUL: Mm-hmm.

-So, we are in a fight. -PAUL: Yeah.

Amy and I just made a spawner that does not blood gate.

We are slowly getting them to not do that.

I mean, it's always a trick.

Like, the final say thing is always a tricky business.

Because at the end of the day I have final say.

Like, I'm the Project Lead. Everything I want to put my foot down

and be a jerk about it, I can do it.

And that's just how it is.

Um, the more often I do that,

and the more often I do it about small things,

the worse everything gets.

ZAK: Big push to get fishing working in the game.

Rusty proxied in, like, 25 different fish.

And they are all in as pickups and you could fish them out.

Um, we are going to be making some fishing hot spots,

and, like, little treasure zones and things like that.

So, that'll be populating all over the game.

TIM: Uh, my daughter is getting into Stardew Valley,

and I have to say I hate fishing now.

And I don't want to see f--

I don't want to see fishing in a video game ever again.

PAUL: There is a distinct pushback against...

Fishing? Fishing?

-You were gonna talk about fishing, right? -I was going to say crunch culture, but...

Yeah, it's fishing.

TAZIO: Specifically when I was working on fishing.

I was just, like--

I came in on a weekend, because I was behind.

And I was like-- I started working, I was just like...

And I just realized that I had-- really had trouble doing it.

Because I was like: "Why is there a fishing minigame in this?"

And, honestly, like, there is--

there could totally be a good fishing minigame.

But, the thing is, it's, like...

that needs to come out of, like, a very, sort of, Tim space.

I'm against this fishing business.

Except if you can think of something that's like fishing,

but not the typical...

-SETH: But not fishing. -Yeah, not fishing.

People are very concerned about there being fishing in the game.

So, I hear about it a lot.

I just haven't gotten-- We are going to cut it.

I haven't gotten around to cutting it,

just because, like, I've got a bigger fish to fry.

Maligula's level.

Like, the final-- Like, the climax of our game,

that's not in the game right now.

So, we gotta make that whole thing.

And none of the bosses exist.

So, there is that. Which we gotta figure out.

ZAK: Um, and so, this is sort of my pitch for that.

People also could be like: "That's terrible!

We can't do this, because of these reasons."


But, uh... first up, like, why have the bosses?

Um, I don't know if anybody wants to dispute that.

Uh, I feel like we do need them.

Just because we have levels

that have a very distinct, specific problem to them

that you are meant to resolve.

Um, and so, they sort of serve

as narrative and gameplay peak experiences at the end of it,

to sort of culminate and finish things off.

And several of the levels sort of have been counting on them narratively.

Uh, who does have a boss?

Uh, there is the Luctopus at the end of Hollis.

Um, there is--

In Helmut you fight some sort of memory of the final battle?

Next most least information is Bob Z.

Some sort of plant-like thing.

Cassie, giant paper librarian that chases you down a hallway.

Compton, uh, doesn't have a boss.

There is a big battle arena at the end.

Tim just turned in the script and he added a boss to the Compton level, so.

ANDY: I was just-- because you had your list,

so I was like: "Wait a minute!"

ZAK: We don't have to do that. We don't have to do that.

He added some sort of weird vegetable boss, I don't know,

-I haven't even read it yet. -BRIAN: Is Compton the food one?

-Compton is the food one. -BRIAN: Okay.

Um, it's the food one, it's very arena based.

And there is a lot, like-- yeah.

Shouldn't dessert be the boss of a meal?

-Oh-h! -[LAUGHTER]

-So, I have a question. -ZAK: Yes!

So, you want to do five bosses.

-Plus all the other AI that's left. -Yes, yes.


ZAK: Four months.

-Four months. -Yep.

-ANNA: Okay. -ZAK: Yeah, I know.

ZAK: I don't know how we-- yeah, so.

So, how is that schedule looking like, Andy?

ANDY: For the bosses?

Like, it's a complete question mark.

There is really no, like...

Any of these systems being developed,

I need to get some sort of estimate from people.

Everyone involved, tell me, like...

Some of these things Zak is talking about,

like, what would it take to make some of these things happen.


ZAK: Is there a way at the end of the sprint we can get to

a thing that is, like... playable.

And it may be, like, a giant lie, but it sort of demonstrates the intent,

and sort of proves out the core-- the core concepts of that boss.


All right! Status updates!

Yep, uh... So, this trim is getting in.

And I have the railing done as well,

but I haven't placed that yet.

Um, we are going to need to come up with a creative solution for the floors,

because they are all different widths and sizes, so.

MOIRA: (Oh, Jesus.)

So, we are extending this by a few weeks, right?

That's what you said, Geoff? Who told me that?

Somebody told me that.

No, we-- if we have to, we will,

but we should still have the goal of next Friday being done with this space.

-KRISTEN: Okay. -JEREMY: The whole HQ interior.

NAOKO: If we are going to extend it, I don't know by how much yet.

And there is going to have to be a significant amount of juggling

around the rest of the milestone.

GEOFF: Yep, okay, that's it. There is a lot to do.


-All right. -We'll get there.

PAUL: How is morale holding up?

Morale is holding up, we are getting to the point

where, you know, the tension is starting to rise.

Everyone is feeling the pressure.

But overall, I think, everyone is still happy to be working on this.

Um, I'm trying to make sure that I'm checking in with everyone,

and seeing what's causing their frustrations.

At the end of the day, if people are angry,

it's because a process is broken.

I think, it's just everyone is feeling the pressure to deliver on time.

Some of these bigger levels,

like, HQ interior... definitely a concern for me.

Like, how are we gonna have all the time to do everything that we need to,

and make it look good?

The, like, rift, between the designers and the artists

that we had at the beginning of the project is starting to come back.

-Yep. -And it's not good for morale.

TAZIO: It's back in full force, I mean...

GEOFF: I do think the strike teams are working.

-Mm-hmm. -Yeah.

LISETTE: Yeah, I mean, as stressful as they are,

you guys are covering a huge amount of real estate in a short amount of time.

And every time we do a sprint review, I'm very impressed with what I see.

And there are moments where, like, the art clicks

and we all understand what we are making,

and we have these, like, wins.

And we just have to keep doing that.

TUCKER: What?!

ANDY: Shit is about to get crazy!





GEOFF: Uh, and... I think, that there is a lot of people really excited,

because we are starting to see... a lot of visual development in the game.

Um, and the levels are starting to become realized for the first time.


Instead of having a greybox and someone sitting over your shoulder saying:

"This is going to be this."

You know? Now, it is actually that, and...

Uh, you can sort of start to lose yourself in the spaces now,

which is really nice.

JEREMY: We are covering a lot of space.

It's not the way that I normally work,

and so I feel like I'm just introducing crazy amounts of bugs.

JEREMY: Uh, I have a future question.

About bosses.

Is there anyway to, like, make sure they kind of--

cut that-- like, keep it very small,

before it gets out of hand.

LISETTE: I'm actively watching what's going on with the bosses,

and I'm getting extremely nervous.



ZAK: Geoff and Lisette, I wanted to talk to you first,

before this gets sprung on anybody else.

Because I think it is going to be a bigger level... art component

than we-- than people were probably thinking.

But! I would like the team to know, like:

"Oh, okay, this is the plan for the boss.

It's a good plan.

And we are going to figure out how to make it successful.

ANNA: Like, none of our bosses work.

We have two figured out.

Both of them don't do anything.

And then, maybe two more?

Maybe one of those are cut-- I don't know.


And then, making combat fun.

ZAK: Um, so, I think the track that everyone is on right now--

And I'm being perfectly honest with sort of the--

Hopefully, there is a very happy ending you guys can include this with.

Um, uh...

Everyone feels like they are sort of toiling away

at something that they don't have the opportunity to really make good.

Um, and I think that's the core of a lot of the bummer going on right now.

Our big goal right now is we are trying to get that last shrine to be something

that could be arted by the end of this week.

Because art would like to start arting it.

And, in fact, art needs to start arting it,

otherwise it will not get arted.

I don't know, man. Honestly, like...

After all these iterations, like, nothing seems to fit.

And, like, everything seems way too complicated.

PAUL: When is your hands off?

Basically, in the next two weeks I have to, like, have a sign-- I mean...

I don't know how realistic this is, but...

Uh... yeah.

I think after this sprint, basically...

is, like, when they might start going in

and, like, actually doing some artwork, I hear.


But that's going to be really tough to pull off.

EMILY: His world is about making these food stations.

And it's a--

has a lot of animals also incorporated.

This is the battering ram, ha-ha-ha...

-Because he batters. -[CHUCKLING]

So, the batter might be glitter or, like, a Sherpa fabric.

And we are trying to, like, figure that out.

And, uh, water is going to be those, like--

We are just going to try, like, a flip sequence and stuff like that.

ASIF: Not only because I need time to, like, actually finish it.

But also, like, a lot of time to continue to test people through it.

Because even when I did the designer test a few weeks ago,

uh, there were so many problems with it, and...

there is also a lot of, like, clarity issues that he brought up.

Which I totally understand and, like, agree with a hundred percent.

But just, like...

giving players an idea of, like,

what they are actually supposed to be doing.

Which is harder than it sounds sometimes.


TUCKER: Yeah, everyone seems in very bad spirits right now.

People were out drinking a couple of weeks ago.

There were a ton of people just, like, mass--

like, airing everything out.

And so, like, I learned a lot of stuff,

and I'm like: "You guys should talk to other people."

Because, like, Tim, just--

No offense to Tim, he just doesn't know what's going--

what's happening out on the floor.

He is not aware of these things that we are talking about.

But the thing I implore you to talk to him about...

is the design...


like, butting of heads.

TUCKER: Yeah, I mean, there--

I don't know how much other people have talked about it before,

like, on the camera, or, like, how candid,

like, you guys are--

I think, people would get on that stuff.

Um, but there are definitely issues with, like...

I think some of the new people who have come here

have come from studios with different mentalities.

And I think, um...

It is a very linear...

or clear delineation of roles on a project,

and things happening in a certain order,

um, with certain disciplines being absolutely first.

Uh, and any time it went out of order, there became conflict.

And I think that led to, like, the morale.


I don't think it's really the Double Fine way.

And certainly not a thing that most people here are used to.

And I think, additionally,

a thing that a lot of people who have ended up here from other places

came here to get away from.

AMY: Because at Gearbox things were certainly more smooth,

because everybody knew their role.


However, I left there for a reason.

Programmers were tools for the designers.

I mean, you knew that from the get-go.

If you had any questions about that, you were told: "Yes, of course."

We sat on different floors, we got Jira tickets from design,

we did that work.


Sometimes it made no sense to us,

because we had no idea what the hell we were making.

Um, and that's how they wanted it.

And it-- you know, it works well for them.

That's how they do.

Um... it's not where I wanted to be.

Like, we are here, because we are fans.


We are here because we love Double Fine games.

We want to make really good Double Fine games.

But we are making a narrative game.

ZAK: We are making-- we are making a narrative action-adventure

that has a bunch of different, um-- different components to it.

-And combat is one of those components. -But if we could make the combat... more with the narrative.

So, yesterday during the combat meeting,

and this-- several times it's come up before, is that we don't--

that Amy and I are trying to give a more narrative foundation to the combat.

ZAK: And we haven't not thought about it at all.

Like, the enemies are still-- are attempted to be lined up somewhat.

We haven't discussed it.

Uh... sure.

As, uh, feedback--

Well, there was one round of feedback

of a bunch of characters being more or less appropriate to different areas.

And that's why the Burly Censor is now introduced where the Burly Censor is.

And the Nightmare got pushed out to the battle

where Helmut is remembering the time that he died in this horrible battle.

What makes it really bad is I give feedback...

um, and he gets defensive.


And then he starts arguing against something I hadn't said.

And then he'll go off on this really long argument about how I'm wrong.

I mean, you don't need to get defensive.

Okay, I don't mean to be defensive.

It's just that-- I mean, it's still not coming across playing that,

that it has a narrative drive to it.

ANNA: Um, because we also have that:

"I don't know if we'll have time

to do all the things that we want to do to make it good.

Because we want to make it good, because it's Psychonauts 2."

And I think-- I think that's why

the rest of the team is in kind of bad spirits right now.

Because they don't think we have any more time.

And they are playing the game and are like:

"Fff--, when is this supposed to be done?



GEOFF: We might get some magical time where it's, like...

maybe we do finish the HQ next week.


-Hey! It could happen. -[GEOFF CHUCKLES]

GEOFF: I'm not as concerned about this level

as I am about the HQ interior, so.

That's good news...

I think.

JEREMY: There is, like, ceiling stuff that's missing.

Look at those-- all that, that's all blockmesh, the ceiling.

On either side of the blue, that's all blockmesh.

It's just a million little things that are all custom... stuff.

Like, you just can't build these spaces with modular pieces.


I think those little things we can come back to, especially if--

Okay, sure, I'll leave them all off.


It's not in the trailer, right? Like...


TUCKER: Uh, the effects looked good.

-TUCKER: This looks super good. -GEOFF: His eyes are milky.

LEVI: His leg is clipping through his jacket.


-ADAM: Sim doesn't work in Sequencer. -At all?

TUCKER: It clips through right here.

TAZIO: That's, like, the easiest fucking thing in the world.

It'll take me...

approximately 15 seconds.

TUCKER: We need the final animation.

TAZIO: It's broken as hell.

His feet-- feet in the eyes.

TUCKER: Uh, that's intended.

Uh, feet in the eyes.

ANDY: We should get final sign-off

on what we want any additional text to say on the screen.

-GREG: Coming April 2019... -ANDY: Nope.


Trailer, trailer, trailer, trailer, trailer.

It's all trailer for--

You are making five trailers?

-ZAK: We are making five trailers. -That's amazing.

ZAK: Uh, yes.

We are trying to piece together a trailer

which is going to come together at the last minute.

Oh my god!

LEVI: We are maybe, like, 90% of the way there.

Taking a look at where we got our trailer.

Looking at the drab, dismal lighting that we've gotten in.

And trying to bring some more focus into it.

We haven't really spent a lot of time on lighting all of our environments, so.

Just trying to get it all up to speed.

Actually, there is nothing outside this window.


That's not actually there.

It's a-- it's a full cubemap.

So, it's a 360-degree screengrab of the Quarry.

And then, Tazio has a shader on this window

that warps it and bends it.

And then, there is nothing outside.

Pretty good!

I mean, for Tazio it's pretty good.

TAZIO: We have this exporter issue for, um...

We can't figure out why certain sublevels aren't being loaded

when we are exporting our shots of the trailer.

I don't know, I think we'll figure it out eventually.

It's just one of those things.

We are also coming up on five o'clock.

So, yeah, it does feel like something that's important to have represented

even though it's annoying, man.

I'm sorry.



GEOFF: I mean, at this point, that jet has been such a fucking pain in the ass...

we should just--


-Why can't I get it to... -GEOFF: Whatever we choose we do...

ANDY: The thing that no one has talked about here is...

if we change--

Hi, James.

ANDY: I think we underestimated

how much work it would take to make the trailer.

All right, I got a question for you.

You have been doing nothing but trailer work

for at least four weeks?

-Four weeks, yeah. -Like, solid.

And maybe more?

ANDY: That wasn't-- The trailer wasn't the issue.

I mean, it was just one thing.

But these are the calls you have to make.

It's like: "Okay, we have to-- We need a trailer."

We all agree that this is important, we all agree it's worth our time.

So, we did it.

But it does come at a cost.


Like, we lost at least four weeks of real time.

Maybe more.

Of, like, actual work that could have been put into the game.


-I'm sleepy. -Ah, me too.

This week has been hell to sleep in, with all the smoke and everything in here.

Yeah, exactly.


Wear your masks.


LISETTE: Last area we are working on right now is the Quarry.

How is that going?

-It's going, um... -[LAUGHTER]

LEVI: We are done, what do you think?

There is a bunch of stuff missing right now.

Uh, that's a surprise.

ZAK: And mostly everything is represented.

Except for the few remaining levels

that need to have their first pass of level art.

Which the art team is furiously working on right now.

Just starting to replace all the stuff in here.

We are going to use blocks for now, just to get it done.

And then, I think, I just have, like, this area, and, um...

-The deep-fried area left. -ZAK: Okay.

JEREMY: That might take the whole day.

And I don't know about all this other stuff

that we haven't hit yet.

Because there is a lot of stuff still.

All right, well, then just make sure that, like, you can complete the level, Jeremy.

-GEOFF: But... -JEREMY: Okay.

GEOFF: Besides that stuff is going to be in flux.

Because that's just the way it's going to be.


JEREMY: But probably there is a lot still here to do.

GEOFF: Oh, yeah.


FORD: Ooo, is that honey pepper boar bacon?


-GEOFF: Cool. -ANDY: Thank god!

It looks good!

All right, everyone can go back to their actual tasks now.


-How many more of these? -No more trailer stuff.

Now, go and make the rest of the game look like that.



ANDY: One more time. One more time for Tim.


FORD: And whatever you do, just leave me out of it!

Ooo, is that honey pepper boar bacon?

-Beautiful! -[CHEERING]

Beautiful! That's awesome.

I like the new effects on the bacon guy coming out.

Bacon-- what's he called? Ford?

-Ford coming out of the ear. -[LAUGHTER]

GREG: Bacon guy.

-The bacon guy? -His eyes are really crooked.


TIM: Ooo, whoo, wee!


-That's great, that's awesome. -Good.

Come next week, the world shall know of our greatness.

-This time next we'll be watching it. -Yep.

ZAK: So, the trailer...

was in the can last week, and is sent off,

and everybody has approved of it, and it's locked and loaded,

and ready to play...

after 5:30 at some point during The Game Awards?

We don't really know exactly when it's going to be.

TIM: Spaff is going to tweet it.

Oh, we don't know when it's going to show during the show, that's true.

All right, cool. That's it for Psychonauts 2.


PAUL: Do you feel like this is--

Like, do you get to show your family or, like:

"This is what I've been doing for the past couple of years."


Yeah, uh...

I was just down there for Thanksgiving.

And they were asking, like: "Are you still working on that same game?"


And I have to be like: "Yeah..."

And they are like: "Oh, is it coming out soon?"

And I'm like: "Uh..."

Yeah, so it's nice to finally have something

that I could show them and be like: "Look, I'm not just... fucking around."






ZAK: Uh, it was really great, because often when you make a trailer,

you just sort of make the trailer, and then it just goes out,

and it's on the internet.

Um, but doing it at the Game Awards was really suspenseful and exciting,

because the whole team got to sit here in our Lola lounge,

and wait for it to come on,

and we weren't really sure where it was going to come on during the evening.

And every single time it would jump to a new trailer, we'd be like:

"Ah, is this going to be us?"

And so, the team got very excited about it.



ZAK: Everybody stopped taking pee breaks.

Uh, we just had to wait for it to happen.

Oh-h! This could be it!


Oh, here it is! Here it is, here it is.


GREG: I was down at the Game Awards last week.

TIM: What was that like to be there when the trailer hit?

GREG: Yeah, people were very excited.

But it was good!

A lot of other people came up and congratulated me too.

And, I think, um...

Lots of other publishers, and Sony, and folks just seemed to have

really good things to say about the trailer, so.

Uh, we were on a bunch of lists of, like, best trailers of the show.

And I had a lot of people come up and say

it was one of their favorites of the show too, so.

-GREG: It seemed to go over well. -TIM: Yeah! Awesome.

TIM: Good job on the trailer, you guys.

It's cool.

PAUL: Um, so...

There is excitement about that, but at the same time...

Like, there's been news recently about Starbreeze that's...

mildly upsetting.

Big week last week. A lot of crazy stuff happened in the news.

If some of you were watching.

Our friends at Starbreeze had an exciting, exciting--

You never want actual news about you, or your publisher at all.

But that was, uh... exciting.

Uh, from what we know-- we don't--

Someone got arrested at Starbreeze headquarters.

And... someone-- and a CFO-type person got arrested.

We think for selling their stock too close to...

an event... that changed their stock price?

Which is not deemed proper, and so...

Um... we think the person arrested is no one that we know.

Um, but no one knows where Bo is right now.

-TIM: So, that's exciting! -[LAUGHTER]

And so, that's not, like, nice news,

but we are still hoping--

The word from Mikael and Evan is that it doesn't--

It shouldn't affect us.

Once the smoke clears this will all be fine.

But it's a weird-- when something weird--

When stock shenanigans happen, the government comes in

and it puts a lawyer at your company as, like:

"Make sure you don't spend money on things like yourself."

And other things like that.

So, they are watching how they are spending their money now.

And I, uh...

I think, like I said, it's a great time to have an awesome trailer out there.


That even a lawyer can understand.

But, um...

I think even if--

If they are going through a restructuring...

We are the only thing, I think, that they are shipping next year.

So, I think that will seem pretty important

as a thing to keep funding, and keep going on.

So, I'm optimistic about that.


And... that's really all the Starbreeze news I have.

Do you guys have any questions about that?

-TIM: Because it's weird. -[LAUGHTER]

ZAK: It is weird. It is a very strange situation.

Um, and, uh...

They are going through what they are going through.

And they'll come out the other side of it, hopefully soon.

I think it probably feels more, um...

Excuse me.


Pardon me. Cut that out.


Leave that in.


Like, I knew everyone was invested in each other

and it could all come down, but, um...


But it seems like we are getting reassurance

from Starbreeze that we are still good to go.

As far as we know though, everything is still--

All of the money that is owed to us is still set aside for us.

Uh, they are supposed to loop back in, like, a week or two with more news.

It's just Mikael is kind of in the middle of all this stuff shaking out, so.

We'll know more soon.

PAUL: I mean, the studio has survived for a pretty long period of time.

More than most.

And, um...

Were you here when the, uh...

the layoffs happened that one time.


And honestly...

it's probably why I'm here.


All right. Welcome, everyone.

Art Weekly.

This is the last Art Weekly before the end of the milestone.

-Whoa-ow! -Oh my god!


So, if anything is not at Alpha that you want to talk about--


Is the game going to be at Alpha stage when this milestone is done?


Art-wise, I think so.

It'll be...

you know, like, 95% done.

And then there is just going to be a lot of polish, but I--

Just design-wise I don't feel like the game is really there right now.

I don't want to call that Alpha.


It's just really... simple.

Really kind of... broken.



ZAK: Like, in terms of our-- our platforming level design,

we need-- we need to do a lot of iteration on that.


We have a big tool set,

but that platforming is very flat across the game right now.

Like, there is not much of an arc in terms of, like,

you start doing something, and then it gets a little harder,

and then you land finally, and you are like: "Phew, that was tough."

And then you go off and do something else.

Like, everything tends to be, um...

pretty flat pace.

Uh, because there is a lot of work to do there.


NAOKO: There is some shit about the gameplay that is scary.

And then Zak is just like:

"No, I want Asif for, like, R&D and prototyping."

And I'm like...

"R&D and prototyping?!

What are we R&Ding and prototyping right now?"

And he is like: "Action paths."

Like... fucking action paths?! Are you--

And, like, that focus on action paths

is just, like, so against everything that Psychonauts is.

That's not what Psychonauts is about.

That's not-- Like, the reason people play Psychonauts

is because it's fundamentally and narratively grounded in an idea.

And, like, a very specific and particular world

that people really love.

And I think that's way better!

GEOFF: Part of it is that...

no one has been playtesting the levels,

except for the designers amongst themselves.

LISETTE: Mm-hmm, and it's not until we get to a team playthrough...

GEOFF: Yeah, which is why, I think, there is going to be a reckoning at Alpha.

It's because everybody is going to play through the game...

And they'll see what the game is.


ANDY: (Okay.)

These-- these interviews--

Things like this are getting harder right now.

Because it's like: "Andy, what's going on with the project?"

I'm like: "Ah, it's not good."


I'm like...

Anyway, are we sure--

Is-- is Tim going to watch this?

Velocity is a strange word.

And our velocity up to this latest milestone has not been...

what I would hope it would be.

So, we are going to kind of assess:

"All right, this is where we came up short."

Because we've come up short on this milestone.

I mean...

If we were in a position where we had to submit this for payment,

we would not get paid.

If we were-- if that was a thing.

Fortunately, it's not.

Um, but... that's a fact.

You guys have busted your ass.

And we are working quite well when it comes to us hitting our times.

So, do not leave that meeting feeling like you have failed,

because people in this room have not.

ANDY: When you come in Monday the... 10th,

the build will be locked.

We will be in Soft Lock.

So, there will still be content changes going in,

but they will be controlled.

And then, once we branch--

and we are going to try to branch as fast as we can,

to get the art teams working back in levels

as fast as humanly possible.

Is there a, like...

Like, where are we at for all the levels?

Like, are there levels that haven't received any art yet?

So, where we are across the board is...

Um, all the levels are--

The goal for Alpha that we are supposed to hit,

that we are not hitting to be honest,

um, was to get all the whitebox out for all the levels.


ZAK: And that is mostly happening.

Some levels are, like, completely there.

Some levels are, like, 80 to 90 percent there.

You can squint, and you see it.

Um, there are three levels that will not be touched at all

in terms of the whitebox for Alpha.

Uh, which is going to be Loboto, Maligula and, um...

bowling Ford.

Now we are looking at the point of, like:

"All right, if we add all this stuff that we didn't get done...

on top of the stuff we knew we had to do,

where does that put us?"

And it's like: "Oh... okay."

"How are we going to-- What are we going to do?

How are we going to address this fact?"

ANDY: I'd like to talk about...

Have anyone looked at the agenda I sent out?

-CARYL: I did. -ANDY: Okay.

I wanted to go just quickly--

kind of a snapshot of where this milestone is at.

Then we'll talk about the kind of risks moving forward into the next year

and to the end of the project.

Anything that's yellow is still in progress.

And then, bosses. This was a known.

Um, we have eliminated one... more boss.

We are down to four.

And this is basically where they are at.

The next steps here are to try to kind of collectively decide...

What we could do?

I mean, what our options are?

"We want this much.

We have enough time and money to do this much.

What can we make?

How do we want to make it?

CARYL: So, what's our ship date, Andy?

ANDY: Our ship date--

CARYL: What date are we supposed to submit?

We are supposed to submit July 28th.

LISETTE: Are we going to be happy with that quality bar?

ANDY: That's...

That is the question to ask.

Um, production has provided scenarios.

Kind of here to you guys to kind of tell me my marching orders.

GREG: It's hard to visualize what that would mean.

-CARYL: Yeah. -I agree.

I mean, when you are asking me about what I thought,

are you looking--

What kind of solutions are you looking for from me?

Because, are you saying...

"Would I rather have it look ugly or cost more than we have?"

-CARYL: Well, I guess... -[CHUCKLING]

CARYL: This is-- I feel like-- yeah, yeah.

I am just going to be quiet till something else gets offered.

LISETTE: That's essentially the options we have.

CARYL: Frankly, I would have a hard time...

justifying a lot more budget for this game.

Because at this point, like...

You know, even if we solve all of our money problems

and everything is super hunky-dory for the company,

we can't continue bloating the budget... from need,

we have to, like, look at other solutions.



ZAK: Yeah, I mean, I guess the question is would we have...

CARYL: Thoughts?

...the rest of that budget that we think we are going to get.

If we don't think we are going to get that money,

we should be doing much more drastic things then

to ship this game.

Because we are just going to... run out.


TIM: Happy New Year, everybody!

-TIM: Nice to see you, all, yay! -[CLAPPING]

TIM: Um...

Hello, everybody!

So, uh... anyone reading news lately?


TIM: Want to share, anyone?

Like in school, when you all would bring one newspaper article to share.

ANDY: Spoiler alert!


Don't worry about it, um...


ANDY: It's all good, right?

TIM: No, there is a big, um... Eurogamer article about, um...

...about Starbreeze, which was very enlightening.

So, anyway, the article is just about all the excesses

and overspending of Starbreeze over the years, which...

even though we knew about some of it,

it was still a really entertaining read.

They did it-- they definitely--

Um, and-- and Bo, for those of you that have met him

when he was in the office and he came to the push-up club,

he is definitely, like, a--

He is a larger than life kind of guy that, uh...

Well, we don't know where he is right now.

But, um...

Any questions about that that I can't answer?


Give it a shot-- give it a shot, okay.

Um, otherwise...

Are there other business news last week?

Uh, yeah, I guess, last week we had a big marketing kick-off with them.

So, that was good.

We hadn't talked to their marketing team for a while

about specific ideas for supporting the game, and it was nice--

As of right now, we are still being paid by Starbreeze, but...

Uh, yeah...

Who knows what it's going to look like in two-three months.

There is a possibility that they do fold and shutdown,

and we have to find a new publishing partner.

We mostly focused on E3

as kind of the next big beat for Psychonauts.

Um, showing actual gameplay off.

Um, so, we talked last week internally a lot

about a potential idea for a demo,

uh, what that could look like.

With the team and the project we really need to focus

on, like, making one really good thing.

So that everybody can point to something in the game, in a level, and say:

"That is what Psychonauts 2 is supposed to be.

I understand what good looks like.

I understand how to get there."

Um, so, we started to talk about that in parallel.

And our assumption was:

"Hey, our E3 demo and this kind of one good level thing

will be the same thing."

It was an interesting decision, because it's, like...

Obviously E3 is coming up.

And we have plans to show the game there in a big way.

Um, we are building a big booth.

And it's going to be the first public demo of the game.

So, we want to make sure that the demo is awesome

and represents what we want to ship.

Um, so, we kind of do have to focus on that.

And, normally, we would, you know, want to make sure

that that's not at the cost of the larger schedule.


But we kind of also know

that the larger schedule is up in the air right now

until some of this financing comes in.

So, it's going to be really important

that if things do totally fall apart and go wrong,

we have something really polished to show around

to potential new publishers or things like that,

if things go south with Starbreeze.


ZAK: Uh, so...

As everybody hopefully knows--

So, we are going to start, uh...

really full steam ahead working on Loboto.

And make it a sort of great level

that represents everything we want and hope Psychonauts 2 to be.

The game is not an enjoyable experience.

So, how many people had not an enjoyable experience

when they played during the Alpha milestone.


Um, and that's... not great.

I firmly believe we are not making a bad game.

We are making a game that is bad right now that we are going to make good.

And we are going to make good through the talents and hard work

of all the people in this room.

And so, I know there can be a lot of angst when you look at something

and it doesn't seem like it's quite there

and whoever did it must have been an idiot.

But that's probably not the case.

Um, and they probably would love to hear the feedback.

ANDY: Except for the idiot part.

ZAK: Well-- yes, not the idiot part.

Not the idiot part, don't do that.

Um, because the thing is, like...

You guys observe the team all the time.

You are seeing me blather at people.

You are seeing people's reactions.

You are focused on people's reactions.


Is there anything you've observed, is there anything that's like:

"Wow, you guys have a problem with this, you need to fix that.

This is a weird dynamic that comes up."

I'm at a point right now where I'm, like...

second guessing a lot of my communication.

Because I've done a lot of communication where it's like:

("Everyone hated that.")

And I'm like: "Oh, okay, I thought that was pretty good."

Um, you guys are watching me all the time.


Me or the team?

What do you think? What-- what--

Just to get you out of the impartial box.


ZAK: Um, so, I'm hoping--

I mean, I'm hoping with launching into Loboto,

the good level project with Loboto,

getting him more regularly, like, playing the game,

playing the game with the team, providing feedback to the team.


Natural moment.

Natural moment.

Just looking at your belly.

So, Loboto is the intro of the game,

as many of you know.

So, you start out in this office.

And as Loboto is realizing that you are inside his own brain, it starts--

the office starts to deconstruct

and turn into more of a what we are calling a tooth hell.

ZAK: Zipper mouth.

GIGI: You got a zipper mouth that you are going to TK.

There is, like, a mouth and a uvula that--

Sasha teaches you to PSI Blast the uvula.

ZAK: And so, we are really trying to, like...

do a little bit more in this level

to have that kind of playable surrealism

that we want to have in the rest of the game,

to sort of set the tone for it.

Does anybody have questions or... anything at this point?

-ZAK: No questions? -TIM: No questions...

I think I should say,

because, I think, a lot of people will ask:

"What does this mean for our schedule?"

And there are some questions that only I can answer about the schedule.

Because it gets into the how much money does the project have, you know?

And so, I think, it seems weird

to not be able to really answer that question fully.

Because we currently don't have the money for that extra time.

And that's really a weird position to be in.

But it's a position that we've been in many, many times before.

-And it's kind of... -[CHUCKLING]

...almost steady state for us, and it's fine, but, um...

You know, getting the rest of the money for the project

is what Greg is doing full-time all the time now.

But the-- the main focus for everybody now is just

to prove to ourselves that the game is fun.

I think we have to really prove to ourselves

that we can make a really great level that we all love.

Because if we don't have that feeling,

like, if we don't think the game is going to be fun,

I don't think any of the other stuff matters.

Like, I don't think the schedule or anything else matters,

if we don't think the game is fun.

And I think all the hard work is for nothing,

if we don't think this game is going to be great.

So, I think this is our chance to...

uh, prove to ourselves that it is going to be great.

And I think it will be!


ZAK: Yeah, so, the focus is really on making this thing something amazing,

and as amazing as it deserves to be

with all of the creativity and passion and work

that people have put into all the stuff that is in the game right now.

Over the last-- depending on how long you've been on the project,

anywhere up to...

What's today? What's today?

February 22nd.

ZAK: Oh, it was my first day three years ago!

-So, I started on this three years ago. -Really?

Yes, that was-- that was my start date.

-February 22nd. -That was a set up.

-No, it was not! -[LAUGHTER]

This whole meeting-- this whole meeting was a set up for that.

Happy anniversary!

Yep, uh...

I remember that, because that was my quit date for another game job.


But no, so, it's been three years since, you know, I came.

And it was just me and Tim on the project.

And I know people have poured so many--

so much passion and fantastic ideas, and ideas that have been thrown out,

or reworked, or redone, or whatever.

Um, but the source material has just so much of everyone's passion

and so much of everyone's fingerprints on it.

And, like, I just really want to take the time

to actually let all of that shine through.

And to get everybody focused on making it great.

All right, thank you, everybody.


Tim is like: "People don't seem happy."

And I said: "Mm-mm."

-Yeah... -Tim is trying to reach out to people.

ANDY: Tim is trying to go to lunch with people,

Tim is trying--

Because if there is anyone in this building

who can address morale problems the best...

-ANDY:'s going to be Tim. -TUCKER: It's Tim, yeah.

-ASIF: Hey, Tim. -TIM: You, sir.

LEVI: If we are not happy with it...

Yeah, like, if there are too many bugs...

If it's, like, held together with scotch tape.

If it's, like, something that's not up to our quality.

Because a lot is at stake with our reputation.

TUCKER: Like, it's really surprising to me how much he doesn't know about stuff.

And I'm like: "Well, I get you are in the office a lot of the time."

And I always assume people talk to him when they are that unhappy.

But they don't.

The outcome of you not having any mental energy really sucks,

because then you can't use any of your powers.

So, what if there was an easy way for you to get more mental energy?

In a combat scenario where I'm trapped in a room?

-ZAK: Yeah. -ANNA: Then what's the point of having it?

ZAK: Uh, it's managing it.

I mean, it's the same thing sort of with health.

When you are low on health, there should be things that you can do

to try to get more health.

And you are going to run over there and pick up a pickup.

And we have healing items, and many games have that

as a way to sort of allow players to--

Yeah, you don't need to tell me about this.

Uh, okay, I'm not trying to--

There is, like, finger pointing happening and stuff.

And it actually surprised me,

because of the amount of, like, kind of...

negativity and, like, the low morale around Alpha felt really like:

"Oh, okay, I see, like, not every studio is perfect."

Or: "No studio is, you know, like, safe from this experience."

And I would like all of us on this team to be able to work better together...


...with a lot more collaboration and trust.

But that has to come from them too.

Certainly, certainly, certainly.

I a hundred-percent agree.


But that doesn't mean that we cannot exhibit that ourselves either.

You know, we are certainly getting to the point of the project

in which, like, if we have stand-offs or people just not working well together,

things are going to get tougher.

And, um...

And I kind of don't want... it to go that way.


ANNA: It just sucks coming into work.


I, like...

I have anxiety attacks before having combat meetings.

Um, like, my heart just, like, starts beating really fast.

I start getting, like, dizzy.

Um, and I have to, like, spend time to calm myself down.


I think a lot of people are hoping that Tim...

...steps in, saves the day.

ANDY: He is like: "I realize that things aren't going great,

and some people are pretty frustrated.

Like, what's the deal, and what do I need to know about this?"


GEOFF: There is a separate axis here that, like, what we show--

what we put out in front of people has actually an effect on the studio.

And the way people see this game.

TAZIO: We need everyone, like, sort of going in the same direction.

Yeah, that's too narrow.

-Too what? -It's too narrow.

-Too-- too what? -It's too narrow.

Too narrow, um...

GIGI: I don't know, I kind of like it.

It's a very compressed space right now.

Yeah, no, I know.

And what I am saying is that the compressed space is cool.

TAZIO: Because, like, we run into the reality of game development

that, like, shit is hard, you know.

And I don't think we've been well enough prepared

for, like, actually implementing the version of the game

that, like, you know, we want to implement.

And that's also the thing.

It's because we were, like-- we start-- we start from the wrong end, right?

And this was the exact conversation that...

...that Anna was having.

And, like, the reason that she left.

You are making it much harder for yourself essentially, because...

you are fighting fundamentally what's good about...

the type of games that's, like-- that the studio produces, right?

You are fighting the nature of the studio

and you are making it something completely different.


Um, this is the meeting, you guys should sit in.

Sounds like no cameras, but you should come.


Uh, come on in.

Uh, come on in.

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