Xenomorphs and Leeds. The two words don’t often go together in the same sentence…which is probably a good thing, as even though I’m a big fan of both of these things in their own right, seeing H.R. Geiger’s nightmarish organism scuttling up and down Briggate impaling passing shoppers and punching holes in people’s foreheads willy-nilly would probably reduce me to a quivering pile of jelly faster than you could say “Jonesy the Cat”.
This evening however, Alien and Leeds did go together rather well indeed; as part of the 2014 Leeds International Film Festival, Creative Assembly’s Alistair Hope (Creative Lead), Dion Lay (Writer) and Will Porter (Writer) gave a talk about their beloved game, the brilliant Alien: Isolation, at Leeds College of Art.
The hour-long talk was hosted by Game Republic’s Jamie Sefton, who guided the panel of devs with interesting finely-tuned questions through topics covering all aspects of the games production.
The talk was absolutely fascinating, and hearing directly from the developers themselves about subjects such as the game’s design process, art direction, the AI design, the importance of keeping authentic to the original 1979 film, not to mention the challenges and creative/technical restrictions that the Creative Assembly team had to work with was absolutely incredible.
In short, it was great to get a peek under the black slimy vertebrae of this fantastic horror game, and really see what made it tick. Seeing how Creative Assembly were able to translate that authentic Alien experience from the big screen to home consoles was both enlightening and inspiring, and personally gave me an even greater appreciation of their survival horror masterpiece.
I was snapping away with my camera, so of course have a gander at the pictures below. Now if you’ll excuse me, all that camera flashing may have given away my position to the Xeno – time to find a locker and weep…