Epic Mickey 2 came and went, and was pretty much a step back from the original in every way. What started out as a promising homage to Walt Disney's first major creation -- Oswald the Lucky Rabbit -- ended up in disaster bot...
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Warren Spector: AAA innovation will inevitably be limited by Tony Ponce
No one is going to dispute that the entire Epic Mickey franchise was the Matterhorn of unrealized potential. How much of that was due to developer Junction Point Studio's lofty ambitions versus Disney's demands and constraints, I couldn't say. I will say that the Junction Point team was filled with highly talented individuals, such as studio co-founder Warren Spector. Having spent a day at Magic Kingdom with the man, I can vouch that his passion is 100% genuine.
It wasn't hard to feel bad for Spector when Junction Point shuttered following poor sales of Epic Mickey 2. Legally unable to publicly discuss the matter until after April 1, he finally spilled the beans in an interview with GamesIndustry International. In addition to talking about his experience working under Disney's wing, he also hinted towards his future game development plans and expressed apprehension towards working on AAA projects anytime soon.
Surprisingly, Spector doesn't bear any deep grudge against his former employer and is rather grateful that he was able to fulfill a lifelong dream of working for Disney. Despite not quite understanding the tangled bureaucracy of one of the biggest media companies in the world -- "I've learned that I don't play politics very well, that's for sure, and I'm not great with bosses, generally" -- he doesn't regret his initial decision to sell Junction Point to the House of Mouse. But that doesn't mean that working on two massive AAA titles with equally massive teams didn't take its toll.
The Disney Movies UK Twitter account revealed that Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two will be heading to the PlayStation Vita sometime this year. No other info was revealed, but we've reached out to Disney and will have more for...
As you may have heard, Junction Point recently closed. Studio head Warren Spector just ended his D.I.C.E. 2013 Summit talk this morning with a reminder of that, for all his peers at the event. The audience had a laugh.
Someone hire this man!
Hey gang! Lots of crazy industry news today, which is less fun than actual news about games.
Today we've got new BioShock Infinite and SimCity trailers to show off, good news on the THQ/Vigil Homefront, and sad news for Epic Mickey studio Junction Point. Also, Dead Space 3 is getting a bare-bones PC port, and Frostbite 2.0 is coming to Mac!
Following some rumors floating around yesterday, Disney has just confirmed the closure of Austin-based Junction Point Studios:
"It was with much sadness that we informed our teams today of changes to our Games organization, which include the closure of Junction Point Studios. These changes are part of our ongoing effort to address the fast-evolving gaming platforms and marketplace and to align resources against our key priorities. We're extremely grateful to Warren Spector and the Junction Point team for their creative contributions to Disney with Disney Epic Mickey and Disney Epic Mickey 2."
The house that built Epic Mickey is no more, adding to the ever growing sad list of studio closures over the last couple of years. Unfortunately, this can't be seen as too much of a shock in this case given how poor Epic Mickey 2 sales were, with the game only moving 270,000 copies before the end of 2012.
As a Sega Genesis child, the news that Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion was going to be a spiritual sequel to Castle of Illusionsent me into a fit of joy spasms. Considering how tedious the original Epic Mickey was, my interest in this handheld excursion easily dwarfed any held towards the home console sequel.
I expressed only the tiniest of concerns regarding the touchscreen controls back when I demoedPower of Illusion in September. Everything else was so colorful and polished that I was willing to ignore those and other apprehensions gently bubbling in the pit of my stomach.
Epic Mickey is easily among the more tragic wastes of potential we've seen in the videogame industry. It first whipped fans into a frothy lather of excitement when concept images were shown, displaying a twisted and macabre take on the Disney universe, promising a truly dark Mickey Mouse adventure.
The more the game developed, the more this premise was neutered, as Disney's sugary overseers refused to take the brave steps needed to realize those early visions. By the time Epic Mickey came out, it was nowhere near as remarkable as it could have been.
Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, however, is quite remarkable indeed ... but only because it's so rubbish.
Good Sir Warren (and the fine folks at Disney Interactive) have unveiled a few new levels for both Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, and Castle of Illusion's successor, Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion. As ex...
I failed to mention that, immediately following the Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion preview event last month, Warren Spector led all the journalists on a tour through Magic Kingdom. We went on the Magic Carpet, Haunted...
I had a bit of trouble containing my excitement when Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion was first revealed. Not only did we learn that it is a hand-drawn 2D platformer by DreamRift, the same team behind Monster Tale and Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure, we also learned that it is a follow-up to Castle of Illusion on the Genesis. As a Sega child, this latter piece of news made me completely lose my mind.
Since then, I've been soaking in every update, hoping to to quench my thirst but to no avail. When Chad Concelmo shared his hands-on impressions from E3, I had to bolt my feet to the floor to keep from floating away. The wait was too much!
Luckily, I was invited to Walt Disney World in Orlando to attend a Power of Illusion demonstration led by Junction Point's Warren Spector and DreamRift's creative director Peter Ong. After the duo ran through the game's creation, I was able to hop onto one of the 3DS units available and play a few areas, including the newly unveiled Aladdin-themed environment.
A new "behind-the-scenes" video for Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, featuring Warren Spector and other members of the Junction Point team, as they discuss some of the new features which have been implemented in the g...
GamesRadar has uploaded a nearly five-minute walkthrough of the upcoming Epic Mickey 2, demonstrating the 360 build and the new drop-in, drop-out co-op. GR has confirmed suspicions that the Wii version is the lead platform. ...
At Epic Mickey 2's announcement press conference in Austin last week, Junction Point's Senior Creative Director, Warren Spector, surprised attending press members by calling the game "the first musical comedy game in the hist...
At Epic Mickey 2's announcement press conference last week, Junction Point's Warren Spector talked about how the three biggest issues in Epic Mickey have been addressed for the upcoming sequel, which takes the Mouse and his p...
With characters breaking into song for musical segments, full voice acting, split-screen co-op, and one of the most ambitious camera systems in recent memory, Epic Mickey is going to get a bit stranger this fall in Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two.
Pleased by sales, humbled by fans, and aware of reviewers’ complaints, developer Junction Point is making a sequel with all parties in mind. The result is a game that is shaping up to offer the same charm of the original, just with less fuss and in HD.