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'Psychonauts 2' Design Postmortem

Seth Marinello  (Principle Designer, DOUBLE FINE PRODUCTIONS)

Location: Room 2016, West Hall

Date: Thursday, March 24

Time: 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass, All Access Online Only Pass - Get your pass now!

Topic: Design

Format: Session

Viewing Experience: In-Person/Virtual

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: Yes

In this postmortem of the Psychonauts 2 design process, Lead Designer Seth Marinello will walk through the thinking behind key systems and levels in the hit sequel. He will discuss how the team balanced honoring the legacy of the first game while updating the gameplay for a modern audience while ensuring that Psychonauts 2 was enjoyable for as many people as possible. He will also explore the challenges of creating a narrative platforming game and how a focus on empathy expanded the design possibility space rather than limited what the game could explore. The presentation will include examples from the shipping game and explore supporting the game post-launch.

Takeaway

Attendees will come away from this presentation with a deeper understanding of how we approached design on Psychonauts 2, from integrating story and game to grappling with real-world issues through imaginary dreams-capes. They will see the iterative process and analyze how successfully the team translated their goals into gameplay.

Intended Audience

While targeted at designers, this talk should be applicable to anyone interested in the challenges of game development. Familiarity with Psychonauts 2 is encouraged since this talk will cover the entire game and will cover key story moments.