Martin Hollis is best known as the creative force behind Rare's seminal GoldenEye
for the Nintendo 64, and in this in-depth Gamasutra interview
, he discusses its genesis, its quasi-sequel Perfect Dark
, and Zendoku
, the first commercial title from his seven year-old indie studio Zoonami.
In this excerpt, Hollis comments candidly on the pressure he and his team felt while developing the landmark first-person shooter GoldenEye
, also adding the reasons behind his apathy towards working on a similar follow up project:
”I was aware of the pressure, which was intense. It was clear to everyone Nintendo wasn't interested in something so-so. We responded with fabulous work. We were lucky to get hold of exceptionally talented people and we had resources most other developers couldn't dream of. But looking back, I imagine there were lots of very serious, ongoing discussions about canceling the project.
For example, most of the team were new hires without any experience of game development. The original idea was there would be a glittering launch simultaneously with Project Reality [what became called the N64], which would be synchronised with the release of the GoldenEye movie. We were actually closer to the release of the Bond movie after. [GoldenEye, the game, was released in August 1997, nine months after the US N64 launch and 22 months after the GoldenEye film.]”
He adds later:
”We were offered the sequel. The rest of the team were keen, and in one respect, out of all of them, I was the one most likely to say, 'Yes' because I loved Bond. But I was able to say, 'No' in a second. A lot of the high level decisions on Perfect Dark were made to try and be different to GoldenEye but still reuse some expertise and engine. Really though, I needed to work on a game more different than Perfect Dark for it to be interesting.”
You can now read the complete feature
, which includes more from Hollis on his time spent at Rare, as well as insight into why he left, and what he has been up to lately (no registration required, please feel free to link to this column from external websites).