Bringing Psychonauts twisty worlds to life involved a lot of trickery, and making sure that players could enjoy the game over streaming took even more work. Thankfully, these processes has been outlined in Microsoft Game Dev talks that explain how Psychonauts 2's technical challenges came to life. In the first, programmer Aaron Jacobs breaks down portals with a technical flair that I can only dare dream of. Portals start as a kind of archway where the game allows portals to find objects on the other side of portals in what Aaron calls the "portal transformation" allows portals to call upon objects and rotations on the other side of the portal. Using some camera work, portals see back through each other. It brought portals to life thought now without complications, which Aaron outline in his talk more than I ever could!
In addition to portals, Xbox talked with technical director Chad Dawson, release manager Victor Romero and senior UX/UI artist Seth Forester about bringing Psychonauts 2 to XCloud. A large part of determining how best to bring the experience to players streaming elsewhere was touch controls and figuring out exactly how players could jump right in a platform heavy game. Streaming is a huge part of games and while plenty of players use consoles, the appeal of playing other other devices can be understated. In their talk, OUTLINED HERE the team outlines how to bring Psychonauts 2 to as many people as possible. Battling potential lag and delay became a key battle as did deciding when to show control schemes and when to shut them out during cinematics. As a story-heaving game, knowing the right balance which crucial.
Between this and Aaron's portal talk, we have a game leverage new technology for special effects and ways to bring Psychonats 2 to a wide audience,