Set for release in 2020, Mediatonic’s Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is a multiplayer game that puts a ton of players up against each other in a “mad dash” match after match to face bizarre obstacles.
We recently had a pretty interesting chat with Fall Guys’ Jeff Tanton, Creative Director. Here’s what we discussed.
Segmentnext: What was the inspiration behind this game if any? A game show? Another video game?
Our initial remit was to come up with an idea that wasn’t a Battle Royale because even a year ago the market was looking massively saturated and it felt like it’d be very difficult to stand out and create our own space there. We obviously failed spectacularly with that remit, but from the moment Joe Walsh (Senior Designer) pitched me Fall Guys there was no going back – and the reaction to the game at E3 happily proves we were wrong about it not standing out.
It is, of course, inspired by the great obstacle/quiz shows from our childhood. The relative ages on the team dictate exactly where your references lie. For someone ancient like me, we had It’s A Knockout, then as you wind forward in time you have Takeshi’s Castle, Total Wipeout, Ninja Warrior. Big, colorful, ridiculous shows that pitch strangely willing contestants against brutal physics!
We’ve also drawn from others who have experimented the games-as-quiz-shows format; XBox’s 1 vs 100 and the mobile phenomenon HQ Trivia were vital touchstones.
Segmentnext: Any plans for Google Stadia release with cross-play?
Right now we’re targeting PC and PS4 at launch – we’d love to take it wider in the future so who knows where we ultimately might be seeing these little Guys fall over spectacularly in time.
We’ve always got the tech to support cross-play, but that’d be a decision platform by platform.
Segmentnext: Your steam page mentioned cosmetics and personalization. Should we expect microtransactions or loot boxes of any sort?
No loot-boxes planned for Fall guys. I can assure you of that. There’s definitely potential for cosmetic DLC when you look at the sheer customization opportunities – but nothing that would split the player-base or restrict anyone from playing all the awesome stages we put into the game.
Segmentnext: How long do you plan to support the game post-release? Will it depend on its popularity?
As long as it’s successful enough to build on, we’ll keep supporting the game. We’re a studio with both a console and a mobile background so we’re very used to running games in live-operations, delivering regular new content and doing everything we can to keep our products thriving and successful many years after launch
Segmentnext: Has Steam been a good client to publish on? What’s your take on the Epic Games store debacle?
We’ve published on Steam in the past and it’s always been super easy. But then every interaction I’ve had with either company has been passionate and respectful, just great people doing the ground-work for both.
Segmentnext: Did Epic Games approach you with an offer?
If they did, they were so subtle we missed it.
Segmentnext: As a developer what features would you like to see in next-generation consoles?
Combine them all with one of those alarm-clock-tea-maker contraptions that were big in the 80s/90s? A Teasmade! No-one would expect it, absolute game-changer. I reckon anything that needs to support 16k resolutions is probably going to be running hot enough to boil water anyway so if anything it’s efficient.