Published on May 28th, 2011 | by Shopmaster0
Interview w/ Madden NFL 12 Art Director, Michael Young
ZoKnowsGaming.com sits down and chats with Michael Young who is the Madden NFL Art Director but is also taking over the duties of the departed Ian Cummings. Below is an excerpt of the article:
The first thing I noticed about Mike was that he was a really down to earth guy, and that he genuinely enjoys what he does. There is a real genuineness about him that lets me know he truly believes in what he is saying and doing. The first thing we asked Mike was where does he start when it comes to looking at all the new art and presentation stuff that he wants to put into next year’s game. The first thing out of his mouth really surprised us. He said that many of the things you are seeing in this year’s game have been in the works since about 2008. He says it’s a collection of things that the community wants as well as ideas from inside the team. That’s right, these guys have 3 to 4 years of requirements for new features, and he said that ultimately they look at which ones will give them the most bang for the buck that year. From his perspective, he wanted to put a major focus on presentation this year, with a lot of time and energy going into getting the details right. This year things like authentic broadcast cameras and progressive lighting were what the community had been asking for, and the Madden team is now delivering on. This year’s game does have tons of detail including: team color gloves and shoes, more helmets, linear lighting, the green dot on the back of helmets – to show who’s “miked up”, flak jackets on QB’s, improved skin shading, uniform degradation, and more.
Since we had him talking, we took a moment to ask him about the upcoming changeover of NFL uniforms from Reebok to Nike. He said that if things hold true, they will probably get early concepts sometime in the middle of this year, which should give them more than enough time to make sure that by the time the game drops next year, all of the new uniforms will be 100% authentic and accurate. So for those of you that were wondering, no matter what Nike comes up with, the uniforms in Madden will be on point. For his part, Mike is huge fan of different uniforms and wants to do more of them. He says that he thinks that in some future game, they will really go big on uniforms with tons of alternates. As it is, the whole process of who gets their alternates done is fairly random, and has a lot to do with what teams are popular at the time. Just as an alibi, Mike IS the guy that has final say on what alternate uniforms make it into the game, so you might want to lobby him on Twitter, or the official Madden forums sometimes, since he says he does read them and take them into account.
From there we moved on to one of the most important aspects of the game – stadiums. Contrary to popular belief they don’t get to go to EVERY stadium every year, but they do manage to hit quite a few. When he is not handling his business on Madden, he works as a sideline photographer for about 10-12 games a year and has personally been to quite a few of the stadiums, but not all of them. He says that when they do need to go to a stadium, they will usually send someone out and that person spends several hours shooting every little detail. They also have great reference photos of every stadium, and access to a tool called “NFL Rewind”. This is like the coolest thing ever and shows just how much tech the NFL really has. NFL Rewind allows coaches and EA Sports to type in a search query, and pull up every play that matches it. For instance, you could type “Demarcus Ware Sacks” and the system would pull up every play that involved Ware sacking someone. I don’t know about you all, but I think that is pretty cool. At this point, he took the time to reiterate that a lot of this stuff is made possible by the fans who hit them up all the time with info on player chants and little small touches at every stadium. The reason I keep reiterating this is because he did, and he really stressed how much fan input has into where the game goes, so keep it coming guys. We asked him about which stadiums he loves the most and he gave the political answer, which is he pretty much likes them all, but as a Steelers fan he is partial. He also really loves Raymond James Stadium, home of the Tampa Bay Bucs.
Read the rest of the interview here: Interview w/ Madden NFL Art Director, Michael Young: Presentation is Everything
Share and Enjoy