The Minds Behind PlayStation Games

Interviews with Creators and Developers

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About the Book

Featuring interviews with the creators of 43 popular video games—including Spyro the Dragon, Syphon Filter, NFL GameDay 98 and Final Fantasy VII—this book gives a behind-the-scenes look at some of the most influential (and sometimes forgotten) titles of the original PlayStation era. Interviewees recall the painstaking development, challenges of working with mega publishers and uncertainties of public reception, and discuss the creative processes that produced some of gaming’s all-time classics.

About the Author(s)

Patrick Hickey, Jr., is the founder and editor-in-chief of and a lecturer of English and journalism at Kingsborough Community College, in Brooklyn, New York. Over the past decade, his video game coverage has been featured in national ad campaigns by Nintendo, Disney and EA Sports.

Series editor Matthew Wilhelm Kapell teaches American studies, anthropology, and writing at Pace University in New York.

Bibliographic Details

Patrick Hickey, Jr.
Foreword by Jason Weesner
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 291
Bibliographic Info: 142 photos, index
Copyright Date: 2022
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8507-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4583-4
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Studies in Gaming

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jason Weesner 1
Preface 3
Introduction 7
Craig Stitt, Spyro the Dragon: Born Green, Immortalized Purple and Remastered Fuchsia 9
James Dillon, Crash Bandicoot: A Marsupial Mascot Is Born 18
Gavin Rummery, Tomb Raider II: Lara’s Bigger ­Ponytail-Swinging Adventure
Scott Rogers, ­Pac-Man World: From Ghosts to Glory 29
Aaron Cammarata, Pitfall 3D: From a Commodore Compilation to Neversoft 34
Tony Warriner, In Cold Blood: Ahead of Its Time
David Grijns, Tenchu: Stealth Assassins: The Most Ninja “Ninja” Game, Ever 48
Jose Villeta, Treasures of the Deep: Childhood Dreams Become Reality 53
Joe Brisbois, Aquanaut’s Holiday: A Misunderstood Effort in Relaxation 58
Richard Ham, Syphon Filter: Taking from the Best, Making the Best 64
Michael Mendheim, Army Men: Sarge’s Heroes: Green and Eventually Mean 74
David Shea, Alien Trilogy: The Best of Times 81
Jason Weesner, Apocalypse: Neversoft’s Ironic Invitation to the Big Time 86
Laurent Benes, Future Cop: LAPD: Days of Future Past 91
Noah Slater, 007: Tomorrow Never Dies: From Sandwiches to Spies 97
Craig Stitt, Disruptor: Something Special After Sonic But Before Spyro 103
Mike Froggatt, C-12: Final Resistance: The ­Counter-Invasion Before the Jump to Microsoft 109
Michael Heilemann, Medal of Honor: German Shepherds and Writing Your Name on the Wall 114
Scott Rogers, Soul Blade: More Than a Localization 120
Tony Iuppa, Knockout Kings: The Greatest “Draw” in Boxing History 124
Kellan Hatch, Jet Moto: The Last of the SingleTrac Hat Trick, A Monkey Off Your Back 131
Brian Wiklem, Jet Moto 2: Two Versions of a Special Sequel 137
Brian Wiklem, Cool Boarders: Rejection, Compromise and Respect 142
Jules Burt, Sled Storm: The First One, the Best One 145
Jim Buck, Rally Cross: Sexy 3D Math 154
Tim Huntsman, WWF War Zone: When RAW Was WAR 161
Joe Brisbois, ESPN Extreme Games: Before Tony Hawk, After the Rash 167
Sebastiaan Reinarz and Amory Wong, NBA Live 96: A ­Full-Court Press 173
Erik Kiss and Jon Spencer, Triple Play 97: The Rookie’s Road to MVP 179
Trent Shumay, NHL 98: EA’s First Hat Trick on PS1
Chris Foley, NFL GameDay 98: From the Hallway at Sony to Google 192
Charles Pinady, Parasite Eve: Aya’s ­Not-So-Square Tale 201
Alan Flores, ­Spider-Man: Doing Whatever a Spider Can—in 3D 206
Eric Thommerot and David Grijns, Nightmare Creatures/Nightmare Creatures II: PlayStation’s Gothic Dream and Curse 211
Scott Campbell, Rogue Trip: Vacation 2012: After Twisted, Before Incognito 219
Kellan Hatch and Scott Campbell, Warhawk: One Half of Sony and SingleTrac’s Twisted ­Team-Up 224
Russ Patterson, Courier Crisis: Flippin’ Off the Police on Your GT 233
Dave Quesnelle, Brain Dead 13: The Animated Twitch Game Swan Song 239
Dominic Craig, Team Buddies: Too “Leggit” to Quit 245
Martin Edmondson, Driver: From the Figure Eight to the Open World
Nigel Conroy, Grand Theft Auto 2: Light It Up, Before the War in Chinatown 259
Scott Campbell, Twisted Metal: Heating Up the PlayStation 263
Jonathan Williams and David Bamberger, Final Fantasy VII: Changing the Way the U.S. Thought About RPGs 270
Conclusion 282
Index 283