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Interview with: Turrican 2K


Date: 2001

The Interview

Wraggster: Where were you born, live and family details etc?
Turrican 2K: I was born in 1982 and live in the North of England.

Wraggster: What qualifications do you have?
Turrican 2K I am a second year Software Engineering student at university.

Wraggster: What made you get into computers?
Turrican 2K When I was about 3/4 my dad brought home a BBC Micro computer. There used to be a game called Repton that had a level editor, so in a way that was my first 'manipulation' of a piece of software. But really, as most people would say, the first thing that got me into computers would be gaming.

Wraggster: What projects/coding have you done previous to any Dreamcast programming?
Turrican 2K I used to do a lot of work on graphics calculator programming. I did a few simple games. I used to own an Atari ST and did some programming work in 3D construction kit. Over the past year I have been learning Java and have been playing with writing my own file compression in it.

Wraggster: What made you choose to do a Dreamcast port of the game Snatcher?
Turrican 2K Personally I think that Snatcher is one of the best games ever. Me and my flatmate at University often argue over which is better out of Shenmue or Snatcher, with me defending Snatcher. It's that good. It's an unusual style of game that hasn't been repeated, basically an interactive comic book. It's not overly complicated to write a game like Snatcher, so I thought, why not I'll give it a try.

Wraggster: How did you start and what programs did you use to start coding?
Turrican 2K DC programming or the Snatcher clone? Both answers are the same. I use the standard GCC cross compilers that most dc developers use and an IDE called SynEdit. My most important tool is my pen and paper. It's better to plan your project than to rush in and cobble together something that you'll probably end up re-writing.

Wraggster: Tell us about your Demo Group called Katharsys and if you have any news for us?
Turrican 2K Personally I'm going to move into KallistiGL. I have started a few demos with the Tile Accelerator, but I find that it takes soo long to fiddle with overly low level elements that it destracts from the actual demo coding. OpenGL/KallistiGL will trememdously help with this. Also note that we're no longer at Consolesoft.

Wraggster: Any information on your Bomberman clone and a staus update on it?
Turrican 2K Ah the bomberman clone. I encountered some problems with the inner game workings. At the moment Crt0 will be looking at that area. The problem is that there are bomberman games availiable for various DC emulators, so personally I'd rather put my (limited) time into doing something original like the Snatcher clone.

Wraggster: What programs have helped you on the dreamcast and how significant is a hardware opengl driver and would programming emus be made more accessible??
Turrican 2K Programs. I assume you mean libraries like Libdream and KOS. I thought Dan's Libdream was good and KOS started off excellent , but a bit nasty to use. The later versions are more powerful and easier to use and should provide a good platform to develop present and future projects. KallistiGL will be great for games and such and could make porting easier. But for emulators, I doubt that there will be any speed performance boosts to be gained from KallistiGL. The only emulators to benefit from OpenGL would be for 3D consoles like the PSX and N64.

Wraggster: Whats your opinion of the new super consoles like X-box,Gamecube,Game Boy Advance and the Playstation 2?
Turrican 2K I think that the GBA is an excellent machine. It's come at the right place at the right time where there has been an upsurgance in retro gaming. I think that the Gamecube and X-Box will be excellent machines, although I don't think we'll see any homebrew development on the Gamecube due to the disk format size (unless someone tries to use one of those credit card CD-Rs). As for the PS2 and X-Box who knows.

Wraggster: Which console looks the best for devving on?
Turrican 2K Probably X-Box. But really the DC is powerful enough and more accessible.

Wraggster: What are your favorite games for every system you have
Turrican 2K Ok here we go:

BBC Micro: Repton
Atari ST: Turrican, Lemmings
Master System: Wonderboy 3 Dragon's Trap
Megadrive(Genesis): Micro Machines 2.
Mega CD: Snatcher, Soulstar.
32X: Virtua Racing Saturn: Burning Rangers, Sega Rally
DC: Shenmue
GBA: Mario Kart

Wraggster: Your thoughts on the Dreamcast Emulation/Development Scene and how can it be improved?
Turrican 2K Personally I think that there aren't enough original pieces of software (games, etc) and too many emulators. This may change with the release of KallistiGL. As for the scene in general, after dip in recent months, it seems to be getting back to full strength.



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