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Madagascar Kartz

Another game I worked on for NZ’s finest game company Sidhe Interactive has been released, so I can talk about it: Madagascar Kartz I worked on this one in parallel with the Hot Wheels game, and it’s good to see it out in the world. Sidhe recently tweeted a link to this 4.5/5 review of the game, which sums up the whole thing pretty well.
My primary role on MK was to write the incidental comments that the characters say during the races. Working on well-established characters was quite fun, as they all had a very distinctive voice, particularly King Julien whose dialogue in the films was largely improvised by Sacha Baron Cohen. I really pushed myself hard to try and embed appropriate gags in short stand-alone sentences, and I was pleased with the results. The tiny snatches of dialogue in the trailer don’t sound like mine, which emphasizes another point – I’m just working on one step in a long process that is itself just one strand of a much larger project. Things get changed a lot as they go, particularly for licensed games, and it’s entirely possible that none of the work I do survives to the released game.
Here’s another example, a game I worked on a couple years back, Speed Racer. Another licensed game, based on the cult money-loser by the Wachowski Bros. The game was extremely well-received, so it’s a shame it didn’t get much benefit from the movie which mostly left audiences baffled and overstimulated. Anyway, here’s some gameplay that I nabbed off YouTube. See how, through the whole clip, characters make comments which appear at the top of the screen? A lot of those are mine. I was particularly stoked to see that “Ha ha ha ha ha!” got in with the correct amount of “ha”s…

There’s a bit less talking in this Battle Force 5 gameplay, and it’s hard to hear, but again a bunch of it is mine:

So, yeah. The glamorous world of the computer game industry! These were all fun projects, and it’s a good challenge to the writing craft to try and devise five hundred variants on “I’m going to win and you’re not”. Good times! I’ve just picked up another gig with Sidhe so looking forward to getting stuck into that one too!

{ 2 } Comments

  1. Fraser | December 17, 2009 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Any particular reason why you seem to write solely for car games? 🙂
    Is there something about the adrenaline thrill of speed that stimulates your imagination so?

  2. morgue | December 17, 2009 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Sidhe is something of a car games expert – a lot of their output is car games. I’ve worked on other sorts of games for them, but nothing else that’s been released so far 🙂