Tone Control

Conversations with Game Developers

tone control n. A control device, as on a high-fidelity amplifier, for varying the intensity of high and low frequencies. Alternately, a podcast where Steve Gaynor of Fullbright (creators of Gone Home and Tacoma) sits down with noteworthy video game developers for an in-depth conversation about their career and creative process, and the tricky work of establishing and maintaining a cohesive tone in their games.


Season 2 airs on the 1st and 15th of every month!

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Episode 20:
Davey Wreden

February 15, 2018 A thirteen-foot-tall octopus named Edward Scissorhands rampages into your life and destroys everything you love. What do you do? If you're me, you interview him! This hellish creature, also known as Davey Wreden, is the creator of two of the most mind-bending indie story games in recent history, The Stanley Parable and The Beginner's Guide. Discover how his life and outlook, and his propensity for eight-armed havoc, led to the creation of these modern indie classics.

Games Discussed: The Stanley Parable, The Beginner's Guide, Gone Home, Tacoma, games that include a copy of Infinite Jest in them

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February 1, 2018 Harvey Smith is a mensch. Not only has he been a lead or director on some of the most inspiring and foundational Immersive Sim games of the last 20 years, he's also just a sweet, friendly, thoughtful guy who's great to talk to and has a wonderful southern accent. And lucky you, last time I talked with him, I had my recorder turned on! Hear insight on everything from the advent of the System Shock and Deus Ex series, up through modernizing those concepts into Dishonored, and beyond.

Games Discussed: System Shock (in VR!), Deus Ex, BioShock and BioShock 2, Osmos, the Dishonored series

January 15, 2018 It's like rain on your podcasting day. It's when a train goes by, and you can't hear what I say. It's the hammer blows, that ruin your take. And who woulda thought, it figures. Despite a variety of exciting sonic interruptions, Steve and Nina soldier on to talk through her work a s Nuovo Award-winning indie game designer of titles like how do you Do It?, Cibele, and Lost Memories Dot Net, and her experience becoming a level designer on Tacoma at Fullbright. Pull up a chair, settle in, and don't let the distant hooting throw you.

Games Discussed: Myst, Final Fantasy X-2, how do you Do It?, Cibele, Kimmy, Lost Memories Dot Net, Gone Home, Tacoma

January 1, 2018 Charles Webb, self-styled "Senior Black Writer" at Hangar 13, joined the Mafia III team after a long and winding path that included writing narrative-driven cell phone games in the early 2000's (!), a bit of professional film criticism, and some time with Master Chief. Join us as we learn that led Charles to help bring Mafia III's Lincoln Clay, one of the most fascinating game characters in recent years, to life. Recorded live on site at 2K's studios in Marin.

Games Discussed: Mafia III, BioShock 2, Minerva's Den, Halo, Dragon Quest 2 or 3, a bunch of stuff in old Nintendo Power magazines, a bunch of awesome-sounding narrative driven cell phone games from the early 2000's (!) that Charles worked on, etc.

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Episode Schedule

SEASON 2:
Dec. 1, 2017: Leighton Gray, co-creator, co-writer and Art Director of Dream Daddy
Dec. 15, 2017: Mariel Cartwright, Lead Animator of Skullgirls and Art Director of Indivisible
Jan. 1, 2018: Charles Webb, Senior Writer of Mafia III
Jan. 15, 2018: Nina Freeman of Fullbright, and creator of Cibele & how do you Do It?
Feb. 1, 2018: Harvey Smith, Lead Designer of Deus Ex and co-creator of the Dishonored series
Feb. 15, 2018: Davey Wreden, creator of The Stanley Parable and Beginner's Guide
Mar. 1, 2018: Meggan Scavio, President of AIAS, former General Manager of GDC
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SEASON 1:
Oct. 15 2013: Jake Rodkin & Sean Vanaman of The Walking Dead and Campo Santo
Nov. 1 2013: Neil Druckmann, Creative Director of The Last of Us
Nov. 15 2013: Craig Hubbard, Writer & Designer of No One Lives Forever and F.E.A.R.
Dec. 1 2013: Clint Hocking, Creative Director of Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and Far Cry 2
Dec. 15 2013: Tom Bissell, writer of Extra Lives and Gears of War: Judgment
Jan. 1 2014: Randy Smith, designer on the Thief series, creator of Spider and Waking Mars
Jan. 15 2014: Brendon Chung of Blendo Games
Feb. 1 2014: Tom Francis, creator of Gunpoint
Feb. 15 2014: Jonathan Blow, creator of Braid and The Witness
Mar. 1 2014: Amir Rao & Greg Kasavin of Supergiant Games
Mar. 15 2014: Ryan Payton of Camouflaj
Apr. 1 2014: Tim Schafer of Double Fine Productions
Apr. 15 2014: Jake Solomon, Creative Director of XCOM Enemy Unknown
May 1. 2014: Ken Levine, Creative Director of BioShock and BioShock Infinite



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