HomeMobileWatch Justin Roiland's New High on Life Animated Short + Game Q&A

Watch Justin Roiland’s New High on Life Animated Short + Game Q&A


Excessive on Life, a brand new comedy-FPS from Rick & Morty co-creator Justin Roiland and his growth studio at Squanch Video games (makers of Trover Saves the Universe), was introduced on the Xbox Showcase yesterday and will likely be launched for Xbox and PC later this yr. To have a good time, Roiland created a brand new animated quick you could watch above. He additionally mentioned the venture with IGN.

IGN: What did you be taught concerning the technique of writing for and making video video games from Trover, and the way are these learnings being utilized to the brand new recreation?

“LOADS of content material crammed into this factor. Very a lot price just a few playthroughs.”


Justin Roiland: I really feel like writing a recreation is like writing just a few seasons of TV, nevertheless it’s TV that individuals can attain into and poke round and mess with. We like to have (as a lot as we probably can inside our dev time) stunning responses to that poking round. But in addition, simply forking narrative paths, dialog/ dialogue bushes, a ton of jokes perhaps solely 2% of gamers will truly hear, and most significantly high quality timing with the dialogue edits, particularly when there are a whole lot of shifting elements (dialogue-wise) which can be managed by the participant. I suppose all of that is to say, we realized A LOT making Trover, however an enormous stand out for me is do all of the stuff I discussed just a bit bit in the past on this identical reply, just some sentences in the past. Return and test it out. It is solely about 4 or 5 sentences again. Good luck looking for it! However one thing else that we performed with a bit in Trover however then beefed up A LOT in Excessive on Life because of this is the participant selection stuff. So SO way more. Way more significant issues too. Various things occur relying on so many issues the participant does/chooses. From foundational decisions like what cartel chief to go search out and kill first, to speaking to your sister and Gene, all the best way down to simply some tremendous small seemingly inconsequential stuff you are able to do that finally ends up being greater than you ever would have thought. Only a ton of that. We wished to purpose for a dense cup of participant story-type stuff. We’re trying ahead to listening to folks evaluate how various things had been based mostly on a few of these decisions. LOADS of content material crammed into this factor. Very a lot price just a few playthroughs.

Excessive on Life – Screenshots and Artwork from Justin Roiland’s New FPS

IGN: The record of first-person comedies — in video games or another medium — is fairly quick. It looks like weapons are a method you are conveying comedy on this recreation. Are you a first-person shooter fan your self, and why did you select FPS for this venture?

Roiland: I can suppose of some off the highest of my head! Stanley Parable jumps to thoughts, Portal 1 & 2, Perhaps among the far cry bizarre DLC video games? Some stuff within the Borderlands collection? Duke Nukem? Perhaps that recreation Postal 2? Was 2 the great or dangerous one? Matt McMuscles, somewhat assist? No. I imply… I suppose it is dependent upon what you contemplate comedy. The purpose is, there’s a chunk of nice comedy in FPS video games should you look laborious. Flip over these rocks on Steam. A salamander of FPS comedy could skitter out. GRAB IT! FAST! Fuck. It is lifeless. You had been too sluggish. I do want there was extra comedy stuff, however the world hasn’t exploded simply but, so there’s time. In Excessive On Life, yeah, we use the weapons as each companions and upgradable weapons. They every have their very own distinctive character and dialogue in each single scenario, so there’s a whole lot of participant selection (as soon as you’ve got acquired extra weapons) in what gun you wish to hear essentially the most or use in a particular NPC encounter, and yeah they’re actually humorous. We actually lucked out with the solid simply throughout the board however actually the comedy on this recreation is coming from in every single place. I am undecided what precisely I am supposed to carry again on info-wise, however there are A LOT of hilarious/weird aliens you will meet, some superior tech you need to use to warp in bizarre random elements of the cosmos and people issues are simply unimaginable, tons of sketches and cartoons on the TV at residence and out on this planet. The weapons are large and very vital however positively a far cry (no pun supposed, severely) from the one supply of comedy within the recreation. One in every of our predominant pillars for this recreation was comedy, so it is within the mobile make-up of Excessive On Life. Other than some elements of the story that we positively wish to land with some semblance of weight and simply numerous strong stage design, I can not consider a factor the Squanch crew created for HoL that wasn’t pushed by comedy. And final half, sure. I’m an enormous fan of FPS, however I suck ass at on-line team-based match stuff. I additionally suck at Halo and the newer Doom video games. Quick twitchy shit, no thanks. I construct Lego units all day after I can. Gradual shit down for me, please. Somewhat extra Nintendo, rather less QWOP you realize? I are likely to lean extra into video games which can be single-player which have a pleasant steadiness of story and motion. Give me RPG parts in a shooter. Give me bizarre NPC’s… God, the proper instance to sum it up is Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas. I may record a ton extra nevertheless it’s nearly 3am and I’ve to be up at 8:30am. Oof.

IGN: The animated quick positively has an improvised really feel to it. Did you simply soar within the VO sales space and begin riffing?

Roiland: We now have A LOT of Interdimensional Cable type sketches on this recreation. A LOT. And never all me. Joel Haver and my head author Alec Robbins did a bunch too. They’re bizarre and nice and really VERY clearly improvised on the spot with zero dialogue or actually something earlier than rolling. Simply increase, we’re rolling. “Hello, uh, I am mister signpost! And welcome to existence of the wealthy and the signpost folks,” or some bizarre shit would come out. We must always truly get that “signpost folks” one. I may do one thing with that. However yeah, we recorded a ton and new ones will pop up on the TV as you progress by the sport. Some play solely in sure alien cities on the massive Blade Runner promoting screens. Additionally SUPER IMPORTANT NEWS BREAK EXCLUSIVE!! On this recreation, you can even fly a spaceship and drive any automobile you see, and we have now 100,000 absolutely constructed planets all distinctive from the final stuffed with their very own particular distinctive race of characters who’ve tens of millions and trillions of traces of dialogue, and also you CAN remodel right into a dinosaur. And a cat, in a robotic metropolis. We now have a complete recreation’s price of this one part the place you are this cat wandering round a cool metropolis of robots. It is tremendous neat. By no means been accomplished earlier than. JK!! I used to be doing the entire Hiya Video games factor. No Man’s Sky. Keep in mind? (Google it) I at all times wished to try this. Goddamn. I wished to do it so dangerous, however everybody stated no. It is not good. So yeah, all of the stuff I stated the sport has (previous the comedy sketches) was a lie and I am sorry.

IGN: Does any of your work have a tendency to finish up on the chopping room flooring? If that’s the case, did you could have any humorous concepts from Trover that did not make it into that recreation that ended up being a superb match for this one? Or stuff from this that may find yourself making it into Rick & Morty? I am inquisitive about this as a result of I would think about that you don’t need any humorous concepts to go to waste.

“We recorded one stage in Trover whereas I slowly drank the entire time. We went so as of how the extent performs out and you may REALLY hear the alcohol coming by by the point you get to the primary large boss struggle in Fleshworld.”


Roiland: The boring reply is sure nevertheless it’s nearly at all times because of scope/price range. Trover had further ranges we needed to reduce that KILLED me to lose. However they required new programs that might be used perhaps as soon as, and a bunch of different nonsense developer speak, so that they needed to go as a result of we had like $3.5 million to make all of Trover. That is insane. I do know it appears like rather a lot however ask some man with 200 bitcoins if it is rather a lot. He’ll inform you, most likely, “Sure, it’s a lot,” nevertheless it’s not rather a lot to make a complete recreation, QA, localized in lord is aware of what number of areas, extra QA and bug squashing, AND advertising?? It is positively not a thriller why most individuals do not learn about Trover. So again to the query – When it isn’t scope/price range we have now had just a few block-in ranges that we realized we simply didn’t do a superb job writing. We blew it. And we additionally had this concern: focus testers did not know who was speaking. It was an enormous bummer as a result of it was completely my fault. We had the sensible Reggie Watts file for like 4 rattling hours for this stage and we needed to do a web page one rewrite (Fleshworld for anybody questioning) and Reggie received slammed busy and wasn’t out there to return again earlier than deadline on that VO so we spit the brand new stage and we simply dove in and I did nearly all of the voices. We recorded it whereas I slowly drank the entire time. We went so as of how the extent performs out and you may REALLY hear the alcohol coming by by the point you get to the primary large boss struggle in Fleshworld. That is truly the place we known as it for the day haha. I truly discover that stage hilarious. And I hate a whole lot of my stuff after it is accomplished. That stage makes me snigger each time in some way. All 4 occasions. Lastly, on HoL we received a stunning quantity of the complete recreation in. However with a recreation like this the place you’re constructing out a complete universe and backstory for thus many alternative characters and races, there are simply SO many good concepts. An excessive amount of wonderful stuff and certain if we had $50 million to make this recreation, nice. Toss all of it in. However we do not as a result of NOBODY BELIEVES IN US!!! JK. So yeah, we needed to put aside some cool concepts. Nothing anybody would ever discover lacking although. Simply stuff we learn about that we love and will certainly get again to in some unspecified time in the future. And for the final half, not a whole lot of cross-pollination between the TV facet and the sport facet truly. Simply actually completely different sandboxes. Please spell verify and make me look smarter than I truly am. Thanks IGN. [Editor’s Note: You got it, Justin. No problem!]

Ryan McCaffrey is IGN’s government editor of previews and host of each IGN’s weekly Xbox present, Podcast Unlocked, in addition to our month-to-month(-ish) interview present, IGN Unfiltered. He is a North Jersey man, so it is “Taylor ham,” not “pork roll.” Debate it with him on Twitter at @DMC_Ryan.





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