Are you super excited about the Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster game? If so, you’ll be happy to know that Double Fine project lead Nathan Martz and studio creative director Tim Schafer recently had an interview on how the team came up with the idea and why the game will work so well on Kinect.
Sesame Street is a kid and family friendly game planned to be out this autumn. The game is the first from Double Fine based on a licensed property and will be published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment.
As the game has only been recently announced an interview with team members is more than welcome.
Tim Schafer explains in the interview that, three and a half years ago, the team split up in 4 teams and had to make a game in two week, when
Nathan’s idea for a game that involved cute, furry little monsters, making music and having fun. It was immediately just this charming experience, and it kind of evolved from there. [...] We got a chance to work on it again and polish it up. Then the idea of Kinect came up, it seemed like an interesting way to interact with these monsters.
While originally not thought of as a Sesame Street game, their idea seemed like a natural fit with the popular TV-program.
Our characters that we design fit so well with the Sesame characters, and we have a soft spot for Sesame, so we decided to pursue it [the license]. We had other options, to go with the game as a completely original property, but we just really wanted to do it with Sesame.
Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster for Xbox Kinect
Furthermore, Tim Schafer explains why Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster is an Xbox Kinect game.
All that came together, the early ideas of making a game that’s uplifting, then we heard about Kinect, and we thought, “This is great.” We want to do something good with mechanics, here’s a great, innovative interface that we know is going after that family market, which just seems natural for it.
Nathan Martz adds to that:
For us the biggest thing with Kinect games, a lot of our design lessons are very similar to what you hear any Kinect developer talk about: it’s important that the interfaces be intuitive — the activities for us that are really successful are the ones where you don’t need to do a lot of instructional video.
Generally speaking, with Kinect games, the more physical they are, the more fun they are. Our original design had an even mix of physical activity, music activity and aesthetic activity. And it’ll still have a mix of all of those. But what you’ll find is the aesthetic and musical activities become more intrinsically physical with Kinect, and more fun to do with your body.
The structure of the Sesame Street game
One important aspect for future players is how the game is structured and basically, what to expect from it. Of course, one can see the screenshots or the trailer we’ve posted recently, but in the words of Nathan Martz:
Our game is structured as a book that’s a story about monsters. Every chapter is a story about a monster with a problem and who needs your help to solve it. And it’s in the storytelling where you’re helping those monsters where actually a lot of that Whole Child Curriculum [from the Sesame Street TV-program] comes in.
Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster is definitely something to consider if you want to spend some quality time playing with your kid.