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David Jaffe, Twisted Metal and Sucking D***

David Jaffe, Twisted Metal and Sucking D***

It was an invitation for disaster, for entertainment, for laughs – David Jaffe, doing live video chat, about Twisted Metal.

PRs are happy to wheel out developers once they’ve been media-trained and programmed with the right responses to tricky questions, otherwise hiding them behind a steel curtain of anonymity just in case they say something that ruins their carefully prepared plans for media coverage or creates a maelstrom of bad press.

But David Jaffe? He does what he wants. And last night, he did a live video chat. From his house. Wearing a sweater that he bought from Old Navy. “Look at me, I don’t care about what I wear,” he said at one point. Why was he telling us about his sweater? Because one of his fans asked. It was that kind of night.

There was also the guy spamming the chat stream telling Jaffe to suck his d***. Jaffe interrupted the Q&A to say that he doesn’t suck d*** but if he did, he’d want a big one. Someone else joined livechat and demanded to know if Twisted Metal had been delayed in Europe, ending with “f***ing answer me”. Jaffe then refused to answer his question, saying they’d been over it before, and they he won’t “f***ing answer him.” Then there was the stoned guy who didn’t have a question and ‘just wanted to spectate’, the guy who looked like Jesus, the guy who seemed to be in a recording studio‚Ķ

The most informative bits were when Jaffe, Q&A lead Justin Trease and the host from SonyRumours were just chatting amongst themselves about Twisted Metal. Here’s what we learned from the Twisted Metal videochat last night:

  • Eat Sleep Play is looking into the match-making problems from the demo as a priority.
  • Eat Sleep Play is also looking into the issue where the demo has caused consoles to freeze but Jaffe stressed match-making problems were the priority.
  • Twisted Metal has been delayed in Europe – it will now be released on March 1.
  • The European version will also be censored, as the videos will be slightly reworked.
  • The single-player side of the game will last between 8-12 hours.
  • The way to deal with Talon is to aim upwards with the right analogue stick before firing. Judging by the tone of the answers, even though he didn’t say as much, it seems Eat Sleep Play want to see how people play once they’re used to the mechanics and so on before considering balancing.
  • Jaffe has emailed Sony asking about Twisted Metal avatars and said Eat Sleep Play’s concept artists are happy to make some but he hasn’t heard back from Sony yet.
  • Jaffe tweeted the soundtrack after his part of the live chat finished
  • Twisted Metal will be one of the hardest games to Platinum. One of the Trophies involves freezing an opponent, then bouncing a freeze blast off him, hitting yourself with it and having it kill you, so you need to have 1HP when all of this happens.
  • Twisted Metal will be dark. Jaffe said he thought Twisted Metal 3 and 4 concentrated too much on the humour, which made it feel “wacky” and characters like Sweet-tooth seem weird in context, whereas the Twisted Metal formula should have dark tones alongside the humour.
  • Someone asked if Eat Sleep Play would bring back all the characters in their own vehicles. Jaffe spoke about the origin of the new Twisted Metal game, which was originally due to be a multiplayer-only download title, and said the problem with implementing an idea like that is they had set the budget for memory allocation on the characters early on in development. To change it now would mean changing the entire game and development, effectively. I’m paraphrasing slightly but the short of it is that it sounds like the infrastructure of Twisted Metal will be too hard to change.

And that was it. There was a lot of talk about the actual gameplay, which you can experience for yourself by grabbing the Twisted Metal demo on PSN, and about how to counter tactics, gameplay styles, reasons behind design decisions made, why Jaffe works from home and so on.

But it’s this kind of event – a live chat with fans – that marks Jaffe out as special in a world of bland PR-controlled interaction. He’s always been transparent, open, honest and someone who does things his way and has genuine respect for fans of his games and for that, Jaffe is our second favourite man in the games industry behind Sony Overlord Kaz Hirai.

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