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Unread 04-20-2015, 11:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Community Q&A With John Romero


John Romero game designer and one of the original co-founders of Quake has once again sat down with the QuakeOne.com community to answer some of the questions on our minds.

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View John Romero's Wiki page @ Wikipedia
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Last edited by Phenom; 04-20-2015 at 12:34 PM..
Unread 04-20-2015, 11:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Thanks to those involved in getting Mr.Romero to take the time and sit down for a few questions and thank you John for your time!


Originally Posted by John Romero
Hi Chris, sorry it took so long:

Originally Posted by hadowswift
I have to be the asshole and ask Romero if he's read any of "You Find Yourself in E1M1", if so, what does he think? Where could I improve as a creative writer in his opinion? *url http://quakeone.com/forums/quake-tal...self-e1m1.html
Originally Posted by Romero
I used to write stories like this with my friends where we’d write a sentence in an adventure and each person would either try to kill the character, save the character, or just do insane stuff. It’s a lot of fun. I read the thread on quakeone.com and saw it was interesting to some.

Originally Posted by hadowswift
Where is Romero living now? If it's away from home, does he miss Dallas/Richardson? (As fellow Dallasite/Richardsonite, I just gotta know )
Originally Posted by Romero
I’m living in silicon valley in California. I don’t miss Dallas as I was there for 11 years and had plenty of it.

Originally Posted by SSCHM
Tell him I said "hi," and ask him if he wants to 1v1 me on DM2.
Originally Posted by Romero
I don’t ever really deathmatch over the net – only here at my place……or at GDC.

Originally Posted by Wick3dLord
Mr. Romero, [NP]•striker• wants to know.... when are you going to stop by CAX and get gRaped?
Originally Posted by Romero
I was at CAX last year but didn’t see any deathmatching, just lots of pinball and classic games.

Originally Posted by JDSTONER
if you could ask how quake one and quake 2 are connected... this question has been baffling us single players for a long time
Originally Posted by Romero
Quake 1 & 2 are not connected at all. After I left there was an internal backlash against my design for Quake One, so they invented the Strogg and it all had nothing to do with the Lovecraftian lore we constructed in Quake One.

Originally Posted by JDSTONER
also ask if there was anything they wanted to put in quake they just could not do at the time. what hit the cutting room floor.
Originally Posted by Romero
The cutting room floor of Quake One had a ton of stuff on it. The game was originally not going to be an FPS with guns. Even redesigning the game as an FPS was more elaborate than what we shipped.

Originally Posted by JDSTONER
oh yea one other thing see if you can get the story out of him of that photo i posted of him trent from NIN and robin Williams seems like a strange combo there must be a good story to it.
Originally Posted by Romero
I never saw this photo.

Originally Posted by Mindz
I heard through the grapevine you are working on a new first person shooter game,I was curious as to if Quake would be having an influence of sorts on this game?Also, as you could imagine, us die-hard Quake1 fans have been yearning for that mythical new game that accurately captures the intensity / atmosphere that we've come to love about Quake1 multiplayer. I've played many modern first person shooter games,and none have actually done this in my opinion.
Originally Posted by Romero
Both Quake and DOOM are heavy influences on my new shooter’s design.

Originally Posted by Mindz
Would you ever consider utilizing the Quakeone.com community as beta testers for you're next or future projects?
Originally Posted by Romero
Yes, I probably would, as well as doomworld.com.

Originally Posted by Zop
So, let's ask him what his favorite question was, at least one that stood out apart from most.From either this episode of "Between two Quads" or previous Q&A'S
Originally Posted by Romero
Favorite question from where?

Originally Posted by Adam
Do you have any advice for game developers who are just starting out?
Originally Posted by Romero
Yes – learn at home. Read online guides. Practice 1000x. Make small projects, lots of them.

Originally Posted by Adam
What elements do you believe make good gameplay?
Originally Posted by Romero
Interesting decisions for the player. Awesome feedback for their actions. Mystery.

Originally Posted by Adam
Has your outlook changed in the last twenty years on how to make games?
Originally Posted by Romero
Yes, I’ve gotten much better at it so my outlook has changed.

Originally Posted by Adam
If you had still been at id when Doom3 and/or Rage had been created, would you have made them differently?
Originally Posted by Romero
I would not have made any more DOOM games after DOOM 2. I wouldn’t have made Rage because Fallout 3 was already out, and a post-apocalyptic future is an overdone setting.

Originally Posted by Talisa
has romero ever regretted leaving ID?
Originally Posted by Romero
Definitely not.

Originally Posted by Talisa
what does romero think how the future of ID (after quake) wouldve looked like if he hadnt left?
Originally Posted by Romero
We would not have made endless sequels of our games, we would have kept making new games where we release a shareware version and a full-price version. Our business model would have changed at some point, but we would have kept making brand-new games.

Originally Posted by Talisa
what are romero's favourite game-mods?"
and im not just talking about mods of ID-games, but just in general, of any games there are
Originally Posted by Romero
Counterstrike, TF2 and Portal are awesome mods that got fully developed.

Originally Posted by Mindz
I heard through the grapeinve you are working on a new first person shooter game,I was curious as to if Quake would be having an influence of sorts on this game?Also, as you could imagine, us die-hard Quake1 fans have been yearning for that mythical new game that accurately captures the intensity / atmosphere that we've come to love about Quake1 multiplayer. I've played many modern first person shooter games,and none have actually done this in my opinion.
Originally Posted by Romero
The intensity and atmosphere of the game is incredibly important. It will have its own special feeling to it.

Originally Posted by Mr.Burns/Monty
As with a lot of collaborative projects the end result is often a hybrid of the ideas formed from the individual contributions, a collective vision if you will. It might be interesting to get John's take on how different Quake may have looked and felt were it hypothetically a "Romero only" development.
Originally Posted by Romero
The original idea behind Quake was to see how well we could make a hand-to-hand fighting game in 3D. We would have experimented with camera angles/positioning and really dynamic character interactions and feedback. I can’t say it would have turned out great during development and we would have changed direction if so.

Originally Posted by Mr.Burns/Monty
In what direction would John liked to have taken quake in the sequels?
Originally Posted by Romero
I would not have made a sequel past Quake 2.

Originally Posted by Mr.Burns/Monty
What are John's views on the more recent developments such as the SMC, Darkplaces, FTE, and Qrack.
Originally Posted by Romero
I absolutely love the source ports of Quake. Darkplaces is my fave so far. What I really want is the music playing without the CD.

Originally Posted by Mr.Burns/Monty
Just to echo Talisa's idea, what was/is John's favourite Quake 1 mod?
Originally Posted by Romero
I don’t play Quake mods because I’m always busy making games. The runes and grappling hook were, of course, epic.

Originally Posted by Mr.Burns/Monty
What are John's hopes and suggestions for the future of Quake 1?
Originally Posted by Romero
Well, to me Quake One was done when we made it. I don’t see it going anywhere except having fans creating more levels and pushing the boundaries of what we made and maybe better expressing what we were going for in the areas of exploration, seeing amazing architecture, experiencing surprising and fun gameplay, and figuring out better ways to terrify the player.

John
——————————————————————————---------------------------------------------------------------
John Romero
john AT rome . ro
planet romero|my gaming past, present and future
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Unread 04-20-2015, 08:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Very cool. It's great to see the fathers of Quake still getting in with the community. Those guys really pulled it off, how many games make it for 18+ years like Quake has?

I'd like to see a modernized, next-generation Quake produced that gets back to its roots. Seeing as most of the original team has departed id, I doubt this will be a reality, but...

I heard through the grapevine you are working on a new first person shooter game,I was curious as to if Quake would be having an influence of sorts on this game?Also, as you could imagine, us die-hard Quake1 fans have been yearning for that mythical new game that accurately captures the intensity / atmosphere that we've come to love about Quake1 multiplayer. I've played many modern first person shooter games,and none have actually done this in my opinion.
Originally Posted by Romero
Both Quake and DOOM are heavy influences on my new shooter’s design.
...this sounds promising. If it has the surreal and dismal atmosphere of Quake, along with all the blood, guts, and action, then count me in 110%.

I will say though, I hope there isn't too much focus on overly realistic 'call of duty' style gameplay. Being quad-rocket-launched halfway across a map in a nasty game of DM is what made Quake so fucking cool.
Unread 04-21-2015, 02:39 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Dutch View Post
...this sounds promising. If it has the surreal and dismal atmosphere of Quake, along with all the blood, guts, and action, then count me in 110%.
I'd be really interested and throw my money at John Carmack if he said he was making in reflection to Quake's atmosphere + world with his current level of expertise in game design.

I also knew Quake 2 was absolutely not related to Quake 1. There were some people trying to tell me different but nah.. I knew.... Because it didn't have the Carmack seal of doom(pun sort of intended) on it.

The Quake series went down pretty fast in valor after Quake 1. Strogg then strictly MP Q3 then "Quake:Battlefield" etc... What a shame the company was allowed to strut around using the name Quake like a cheap whore who would be begrudgingly shown off and used like just some object each time with sluttier and sluttier makeup applied.

Quake 1 was bold, in your face and wasn't afraid to shatter reality or realistic expectations. It was fun and a minimalist's game but at the same time a tool for creativity and imagination... ahead of it's time.

Quake 1 was(is) easy to play but hard to master.
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Unread 04-21-2015, 03:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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great to see romero answering our questions

its always nice to see game developers communicate with the community, especially so many years later
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Unread 04-21-2015, 02:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Nicely said phenom. Love the cheap whore analogy haha. And no, quake and quake 2 had absolutely nothing common aside from some gameplay mechanics. I liked the game (q2) but it should not have had the quake name. Doesn't make any sense. Thats like treyarch making a game about pirates and calling it call of duty: advanced warfare 2. Stupid as hell.
Unread 04-24-2015, 03:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Personally, I liked Romero's approach in the first Quake regarding design and atmosphere a lot more than id's post-Romero Strogg scenario. It was also more original: You had this mix of sci-fi/tech stuff in the first levels of each episode being slipgate centers, then you would enter medieval/mystic/weird worlds. The idea was kinda new or at least rare for its time, and afaik it hasn't been attempted to be redone in this way ever since.

Carmack wanted to revisit this world in Quake 5, but after his departure, I am afraid id will take different directions. Right now, they are fully focussed on Doom 4, anyway, and it's uncertain what they will do next (or if they'll do anything at all after that since the next Doom may decide about their fate in general). After all, it's doubtful that without John's creative input, a redone Quake would knock everybody out of their shoes.

If John was aiming at something that brings together the best elements of Doom and Quake (fast-paced combat, exploration aspects, non-linear gameplay, atmospheric environments) and manages to wrap it inside of a good-looking engine, I'd say it'd be enough to wet the appetite of quite a lot of shooter fans out there. I really wish all the best to John and his project, especially since I believe a second chance for him after Daikatana is more than deserved and overdue.
Unread 04-24-2015, 07:48 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I honestly didn't hate Daikatana all that much. The first level is horrendous, and those bugs are really annoying, but other than that, it's just a shooter with Asians.
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Unread 04-24-2015, 03:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Daikatana was ok, it was just another late 90s game, it fell short of expectations but who cares. John did the bitch ad, John paid for that, it's a mistake that just happens in life. If he manages to make a fast shooter game inspired by Quake and Doom with a unique twist, that would be cool.

I fear that selling old school shooters might be difficult these days though, so his game would really need a certain something and not just be a Doom remake that rides on a nostalgia wave. Nostalgia probably isn't enough to sell an FPS. Yes, Strafe got a lot of money, but that was because of the corny trailer. Other old shool FPSes failed their kickstarters around the same time. It's not a safe bet.

It needs to have a great setting and outstanding level design / weapon lineup / combat.
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