Executive producer Tony Casson and Konami's head of console division, Phil McDonnell, talk about bringing GTI Club+ to PlayStation Store.
How did you decide to remake GTI Club?
Phil McDonnell: The timing just seemed right. We all loved the arcade version when it came out and spoke about possibly releasing it on PS one, but we were unsure how you could replicate the handbrake feature of the arcade cabinet. The analogue triggers on the PlayStation 3 Wireless Controller work perfectly.
Have you made any changes to the original?
Tony Casson: One change we have made is to make the Lancia Delta driveable. We didn't even realise it was in the game until we saw it on a video clip. But the only change in terms of gameplay is the addition of online multiplayer. And there's PlayStation Eye support, so you can see whoever you are racing.
PM: We've also included customisation, so you can change the colours of the cars, choose your own number plate and stick decals to the bodywork. And then there's Trophy support as well.
TC: I think we've been complimentary to the original, but if the title is good to begin with, then there's no need to go overhauling everything - it's just such a great game.
What kind of research did you do?
TC: Phil managed to get hold of an original arcade cabinet and we spent days and days playing it and poring over everything. One thing you can do when you're developing is use a debug camera, which lets you see things from whatever angle you want, but because all we had was an arcade machine, we couldn't do that. So we had to play over and over again and study which routes each car took to make things as accurate as possible.
What are the advantages of publishing on PSN?
TC: With this being a relatively small game - it's only a 350 MB download - you get it into people's home straight away and it's convenient for them, because they don't even have to leave the house.
PM: Also, the PlayStation Network is a very attractive platform for releasing a relatively short, but fun game at an attractive price. And we can keep adding to it with new cars and courses.
Do you have any plans for downloadable content?
TC: We have a car pack coming at the beginning of 2009, which adds modern cars, such as the new FIAT Abarth. The new cars will handle very similarly to the existing ones. Something that we loved about the original was that all the cars were similar to drive; it was about the driver and having fun, as opposed to how fast your car was.
PM: We all remember the original having great multiplayer, so that's something we really wanted to retain. And we plan to add more multiplayer modes and games further down the line.
What do you want the player to feel when they play GTI Club+?
TC: Just simple fun.
PM: That's what the original was all about. For example, in the original there was an unlockable where if you won a certain race, you could turn your car into a dog, which we've kept in GTI Club+. All these little touches are there to make you smile.