Have you seen the new Deus Ex: Human Revolution trailer? The really pretty one? Well because we're so completely enchanted by Square Enix's CGI trickery, we've managed to secure a brief interview on the video's creation. Don't pretend you weren't wondering.
The epic CGI trailer was a joint effort by Eidos Montreal, Goldtooth Creative in Vancouver and Square Enix's Visual Works studio - you know, the ones that do Final Fantasy.
Game director, Jean-Francois Dugas answered our questions...
The new Deus Ex CGI trailer looks fantastic. Can you tell us a little about its creation? How long did it take to make and what kind of process was involved?
The Human Revolution CGI is a joint venture between Eidos Montreal, Square Enix's Visual Works in Tokyo, and a creative company called Goldtooth Creative in Vancouver. Initially, Goldtooth Creative created a concept pitch based off the game itself which had to be approved before Visual Works started building the video.
It was a long process with international travel and daily communication and conference calls across the globe, but it was a fantastic partnership that everyone really enjoyed and we think the results speak for themselves!
How important is this kind of trailer for building up anticipation for the game?
Human Revolution is a huge game with a large cast of characters and locations rooted in a very strong conspiracy story. One of the best ways to get across the epic nature of the global conspiracy is through a movie-like trailer and the dev team's writing of the game is so strong that it lends itself nicely to a video like this.
In terms of creating anticipation, that certainly is the goal and we think it does the job!
And the visual style in the trailer is all based on the game? Did you have any movie influences?
The CGI trailer is representative of the game itself. Everything is based off the game; the art direction, the characters, the story, the locations, etc.
In terms of which movies influenced the visual style of the game, certainly we look to the first Deus Ex game but also archetypal cyberpunk movies like Blade Runner and for some Renaissance elements, Girl with a Pearl Earring.
Is there a big difference in approach in creating movies for Western and Japanese audiences? What would you say they are?
There are cultural differences but nothing that can't be overcome. The Visual Works team is the industry's best at creating these kinds of videos so from a technical point of view, there was never any doubt that they would deliver something spectacular.
Combined with the direction of the people at Goldtooth Creative, we were able to merge Visual Works' expertise with our Western designs and storytelling and it worked out spectacularly in the end.
What was the biggest challenge and the biggest delight in creating this movie?
The biggest challenge was identifying the concept; what kind of story do we want to tell? It's a massive game so what key messages do we want to get across in the time we have and how will we actually do it? Goldtooth Creative delivered a fantastic trailer story.
After that, the next biggest challenge was probably just the logistics - the communication across time zones (Montreal to Tokyo is a 13 hour difference with Vancouver in between!) and ensuring everyone was clear on what was being talked about.
It's a massive video with so many different assets - locations, characters, etc. As mentioned, we had multiple meetings every week across so many time zones and we relied heavily on video conferencing like Skype and other tools to ensure everyone was on the same page and understood the nuances of what was being discussed.