This week, Reddit’s gaming community got to ask a baker’s dozen of their favorite video game creators about their work.
Their favorite interview subject, though, was Matthew Lillard, best known for his portrayal of Steveo from the cult movie SLC Punk. Though his AMA might not be as beloved as that of other Reddit legends like Neil deGrasse Tyson or Louis CK, Lillard’s betrayed a dedicated, sweet personality, despite being unfamiliar with many of Reddit’s conventions (“I’m trying. God I’m trying…” he wrote at one point.)
But game developers certainly won the week. The entire team that created a game package called Humble Indie Bundle V came for a single AMA, and while the content’s probably overwhelming for outsiders, the bundle’s fans—especially those who use the operating system Linux, since they got a dedicated version of the package—were thrilled.
On top of that, Sam Hulick, a composer whose music appears in a number of recent hit games like Mass Effect and Baldur’s Gate, gave a sincere look at how to break into composing for the industry—“Network, meet people, make friends. This is really what it’s all about, I can’t stress that enough,” he wrote.
And Zack Johnson, the creator of the brower-based role-playing game Kingdom of Loathing, gave a more irreverent interview. In response to a redditor who asked what item from the game Johnson would like in real life, for instance, the programmer replied “I am hungry, so right now probably a burrito.”
A note on terminology: AMA stands for “ask me anything,” while “IAmA” is simply “I am a;” AMAA means “ask me almost anything.”
I heard that Scooby-Doo was originally scripted and shot as a much more adult-oriented movie, but then got edited to be more family friendly. If that’s true, any chance you could give some details on the stuff that got cut out? (simonb93)
It was after the heat of SHREK and the studio was all for a above the kids head line of comedy… they brought in James Gunn (SUPER? SLITHER? He’s the best ever, love him) and he delivered that version of the script. Yes to all the things you think it is. Smokey van. Velma eyeballing Daphne. Fred being gay because of the ascot. When we tested the parents flipped their lids and Warners got scarred. Its’ one of the crown jewels in their library and couldn’t risk a back lash.
also the demons were really scarry… they were softened.
What’s your biggest embarrassing moment on stage? Illusion or otherwise. (shoeler)
I’ve embarrassed myself so many times. About a week ago, I threw a frisbee into the audience to find a randomly selected person. A guy caught it and I told him to stand up. He was reluctant. I thought he was just shy. I encouraged him to stand up – please, stand up! Come on!
I then realized that he was disabled, and I felt absolutely horrible. I apologized profusely and I ran to him, he smiled, I hugged him, and he understood. So yeah – that was embarrassing.
How did the Humble Indie Bundles influence your decisions to port your games to Linux? What was the porting process like? (phort99)
Linux was like a party that sounded fun we were afraid to go to because we didn’t think we’d know anybody there, and the HiB guys were like your socially fearless friend who says, “Don’t worry, we’ll go together.” And when he gets to your house he says, “Is that what you’re wearing?” and you say, “uh…” and he says, “Don’t worry. I know a guy.” And he lends you a cool leather jacket and you go to the party and when you walk in there’s a needle scratch and everybody turns to look at you and your friend gives a cool nod and then everybody goes back to the party. So kind of like a John Hughes film. Hope that helps explain things. That’s about as technical as I can go. I just hope I don’t accidentally knock over a beer can pyramid that some tough guys are building.
Do you already ‘know’ how the music should play out or it is more of a ‘try and error’ when you compose? (your_creator)
My approach varies quite a bit. Most often, I “sketch” out ideas on piano first. So I’ll use this single instrument to lay out my melody, and the underlying chord structure. Sometimes if I jump right into orchestration and skip this step, the music is not as strongly thematic or memorable. Just using piano at first allows me to focus heavily on melody. Then I use that as a skeleton and go back and orchestrate, layering on strings, brass, winds, etc.
Other times I do just jump in, maybe I was inspired by a certain synth sound, and I start with that as a pulsing base rhythm to layer on top of. Sometimes I have something playing in my head already, and try to record that the best I can.
Me and my wife originally met through KoL via the meetups in Columbus and Phoenix. Did you ever expect KoL to have a role in changing people’s lives? (loco830)
Man, stories like that make me super happy inside. So many people, doing so much sexing, and I guess maybe connecting on an emotional level or something too maybe.
Did you have any hesitation about doing it? Are you planning on requesting to learn about the recipient of your marrow? (Rae912)
I didn’t hesitate because the procedure is totally safe, and some kid’s life depended on it. That made the decision a no-brainer.
I was actually asked yesterday about whether or not I wanted to find out who it was, and I basically said “whatever the the patient is comfortable with”.
How do they recrute? (BorderTrooper)
there are te usual methods using religion, ideology … but also in the south of yemen there is so much anger towards the corrupt government in the north and that can be exploited. “the young are angry and they are looking for someone to help them vent their anger.” one elder told me in Aden
Photo via @MatthewLillard