Insomniac's 'Sunset Overdrive' Was Originally Designed With a 'Fortnite' Style Concept

CEO Ted Price and his team obviously have a lot to talk about over at Insomniac Games, now that Spider-Man is making the rounds. But, during a recent interview, another of the company's hit games came up, with an interesting story behind it.

While speaking with IGN, Price spoke with executive editor Ryan McCaffrey about Sunset Overdrive, the open-world adventure that Insomniac worked on back in 2014 for Xbox One. McCaffrey noted that, based on an off-camera story, Overdrive was actually built with a different concept in mind -- one very close in nature to Epic Games' Fortnite.

Said Price, "Yeah, our first prototypes were actually you building a fort with friends, fighting off hordes of demons or mutants. So, very similar to a very popular game today, which we all sort of chuckle about. But the game did...morph along the way, to something that was more of a story-driven, open-world game.

"Mutants, of course, stayed, and we did have the elements of that base defense that stuck around, which you've seen playing through the campaign," he added.

McCaffrey then asked if there was a point with Sunset Overdrive where the team knew it was onto something special. Price replied, "We've been struggling with figuring out which mechanics were fun. In fact, we sort of started off as a pure shooter, where we were building cover, and trying to decide, 'Should we have standing cover?' 'Should we allow the player to crouch?' 'What kind of layouts should we have for enemies?'"

He continued, "And when we continued to fail at creating a third-person shooter and making it fun, we really had to think differently. And I remember we created this sort of auto-junkyard, where we had lots of automobiles on the ground and around it, we had this big square power line configuration, where we just got grinding working.

"And we were trying to determine if it would be possible to grind and have fun shooting the enemies, because, it sounds easy, right? But when you're moving and...you're moving at a consistent pace and turning, your aim gets really screwed up. So how do you actually track something that's also moving at the same time?"

He talked a little more about its development, with monsters coming into the junkyard, and said it wasn't fun...until "we started making the cars bouncy," he explained. "And then we started increasing the magnetism of the wire" as well as auto-targeting. So little tweaks made all the difference.

Of course, the team has moved on to greater terrain with Spider-Man, but Sunset Overdrive is still a classic worth discovering if you haven't already -- even if it's not like Fortnite.

You can see the interview clip above!

2comments

Sunset Overdrive is available now for Xbox One.