Nex Machina Gameplay | PlayStation Underground


JUSTIN: I’m doing my
best to play and speak at the same time here. MICHAEL: Yeah. Much easier for me right now
since I don’t have a controller. [INTRO MUSIC PLAYING] JUSTIN: Hey, everybody.
Justin here. I’m joined by Michael
Haveri from Housemarque. Thanks very much for joining us. MICHAEL: Thanks for having me. JUSTIN: We’re going to
talk about an Nex Machina. MICHAEL: Yes. That’s our latest and greatest
Housemarque arcade title. So, yeah. JUSTIN: So I’d like to just dive
right in here if that’s okay. While we’re getting
this all started, can you give me a quick
overview of what Nex Machina is. MICHAEL: Nex Machina
is a very classic, top-down arcade shooter. You have twin sticks. So L and R sticks are in use and
also two other buttons which are the L- and R1 buttons. And that’s pretty much your
button kind of set up there. JUSTIN: I got a No Death Clear. MICHAEL: There you go. For the first room,
that’s pretty good. But it follows a lot of
these classic arcade shooters. We draw inspiration from
something called Robotron, which is an early 80s game and
then another game made by the same guys called Smash TV
where we get the sort of boom structure from. And we actually created this
game with the guy who made these games, Eugene Jarvis. JUSTIN: Yeah. MICHAEL: So he’s a huge
inspiration for us and now we get to work with this legend,
so it’s been a wonderful time. JUSTIN: Yeah. You guys — I know Resogun
took inspiration from Defender. MICHAEL: Right, made
by Eugene also. Yeah. JUSTIN: Yeah. You guys are kind of the
front-runners in terms of taking these classic formulas and
putting your own spin on them, and I’m a huge fan. MICHAEL: We’re geeks who love
these games and then we like to kind of put our twist on them. And we get too
that for a living, so what’s better than that? So, yeah. JUSTIN: Yeah. I can feel a little bit of
Resogun here with the dash through and all that stuff. MICHAEL: Right. A lot of those things — so
there’s familiar things from Resogun if you played that, saving the humans
for example here. That’s another layer of
complexity and the score. But basically there’s the dash and then there’s
different weapons. But other than that, a lot of
the things are very different. The engine though, it
is the same engine, or was supposed to
be the same engine. Then the guys go into it and
they started doing a lot of fixes, so everything you see on
screen now expect the character model and any models
are actually voxels. JUSTIN: Oh, okay. MICHAEL: So everything there
is just small little cubes. And the new addition from
Resogun is we can actually transform those. So kind of if you can
see on the bottom there, you can see these strict
cubes turning into these kind of clay-looking cubes. JUSTIN: Yeah, yeah, yeah. MICHAEL: So that’s sort
of our new visual gimmick that we added into the engine. JUSTIN: Okay. Now on the
mechanical side — oh. I didn’t get the humans there. MICHAEL: It’s all good. JUSTIN: So I should probably
— you should focus on saving humans before you take out all
the enemies if you’re going for that perfect run. MICHAEL: Right. There’s a little bit of a leeway
in terms of getting the last humans before you
transfer to the other room. JUSTIN: Yeah. MICHAEL: So even if you
have one or two humans, you can still maybe catch them. This is, by the way,
one of the worst parts, so you got to
focus on this part. We’ve been watching
a lot of players, and this is where everybody
dies at least once or twice. JUSTIN: Yeah. I’m doing my best to play and
speak at the same time here. MICHAEL: Much easier
for me right now since I don’t have a controller. But, yeah.
So. JUSTIN: Oh, yeah.
That was good. MICHAEL: Yeah. So it’s one of these things that
when you have simple controls, when you have a
fairly simple premise, a lot of the complexity
becomes more apparent. JUSTIN: Yeah. MICHAEL: So you’re
strategy within the levels, understanding enemy movement
patterns and bullet patterns, that is something that then you
can kind of put your touch on. You want to go
towards the bullets. You want to go away
from the bullets. All these things are very
apparent where you only have two sticks and two guns. So that’s really — we want
to make a pure experience. And this is a game, actually,
we’d love to establish something similar as we thought
maybe Resogun established. So that’s kind of our mission. JUSTIN: So you talked about you
guys have been fans of Eugene Jarvis. MICHAEL: Yeah. JUSTIN: And you
actually get to work with him. You’re collaborating
with him on this game. What’s that like? MICHAEL: Well, you know,
there’s a lot of fanboy moments in the industry. You know, when you see
somebody who’s work you admire, you get that feeling in
your gut, but. JUSTIN: I got that
feeling right now. MICHAEL: Right. But there’s also,
honestly, with Eugene, the first couple of
days I was in shell shock. I didn’t realize it. And then we
started filming a movie. You know, there’s a
documentary crew around us. JUSTIN: Oh, really. MICHAEL: Right.
So we’re doing that too. So all this kind
of comes together, and I just wake up in the
early mornings sometimes and I realize what’s happening. But when you’re in
the in a moment, you can’t take it
in all that well. But, yeah.
It’s been amazing really. JUSTIN: Yeah.
That’s amazing. That’s got to be so cool to just
be able to work with one of your heroes like that and
make something cool. MICHAEL: It’s quite surreal. JUSTIN: I imagine it’s got to be
really cool for him to kind of get back in there and start
making something new too. MICHAEL: Right.
So Eugene’s making games. He’s making
arcade cabinet games. JUSTIN: Oh, really. MICHAEL: Since the 80s. And he’s done some of
these very cool lately, like, he did a new
Cruis’n USA game and some Big Buck Hunter games. JUSTIN: Did he? MICHAEL: Right. So he’s still making those
physical cabinets in Chicago, so maybe he’ll do
one for this game. Who knows. JUSTIN: That would be awesome. MICHAEL: Exactly. But it’s just cool to see
him do something really more reminiscent of the 80s titles
where it’s really hardcore rather than something that’s
catered to maybe a bit more, you know, kind of the kids, a bit of an easier
kind of a cycle. Do definitely the most hardcore
game that he and his team have been involved in a while. JUSTIN: So looks like
I’m at a boss here. I kind of have gone through and
I’ve been playing pretty safe trying to use my, you know,
right stick to fire things. MICHAEL: Exactly. JUSTIN: Are there
any high-scoring, like, advance techniques that
once I get more familiar with the game, I should
start trying to do? MICHAEL: We do a lot of, like,
let’s say there’s a lot of extra things you can destroy. So even the environment,
if you destroy that, that adds up to your tally. JUSTIN: Oh, okay. MICHAEL: With bosses like
this, it’s actually fairly straightforward and this is
a fairly Resogunish boss. We’ll have much, much more
complex with multiple patterns and phases down the line. JUSTIN: Look at
all those voxels. MICHAEL: I remember Shuhei was
playing at PSX and he was like, “need more voxels.” So we might add some
more voxels there, so. JUSTIN: I’m putting my
name on here. MICHAEL: All right. JUSTIN: People are going
to remember me forever. You want to try one?
I want to see a pro play. MICHAEL: I’ll be
speaking the whole time, and I’ll take, actually,
there’s secret routes. JUSTIN: Oh, okay. MICHAEL: So I’ll try to
do something like that. JUSTIN: Please. MICHAEL: So we can
show off a little bit. JUSTIN: I imagine you’ve
probably gotten pretty good at navigating through this
while still telling people that. MICHAEL: You would think so. Because you got to be
in the zone. Right? You got to be
focused on the game. JUSTIN: Of course. MICHAEL: Similar with
Resogun, you kind of, you know, just blank out,
and you play that game. JUSTIN: I remember Resogun. When PS4 came out, I
was playing Resogun, and I would stream it on Twitch. MICHAEL: Right. JUSTIN: And I would perform
far worse while I was streaming because I was trying to, like,
pay attention to comments and talk to people and all that. MICHAEL: Exactly, exactly. JUSTIN: So I always feel
kind of like a goof when I would start streaming a game, and I don’t play as
well as I know I can play. MICHAEL: We feel like we’ve
tapped into something in the human brain by making
these sorts of games. It’s like the Nirvana
everybody’s searching for. Well, we get a little piece of
that at least with fully-focused arcade gaming. JUSTIN: Nice. Oh.
Did you get that human? MICHAEL: I don’t think I did. It would have
given me a plus there. But I got a special weapon. JUSTIN: Oh, cool. MICHAEL: I lost it now I
started talking about it. There’s weapons you can pick up. And if you pick up an
extra weapon and die, you lose it. And if you pick up a new one,
then you lose it also there. So it kind of replaces it. But that’s what
the R1 button here. JUSTIN: Yeah. And then you got a
dash on your L1. You can dash through enemies. MICHAEL: A here a dash explosion
means that there is little area effect afterwards. JUSTIN: Oh, cool. MICHAEL: So there’s pick
ups to your main weapon, to your dash, and
your special weapon. JUSTIN: Oh, awesome. I love that this is — this
whole level seems to be set on kind of an ever-rotating cube. You keep going to a different
face of this cube as you play. MICHAEL: So in this demo we show
— this is only one that’s kind of on a different access here. You can see the voxels dropping
down towards the — JUSTIN: Oh, yeah.
I didn’t notice that. MICHAEL: Right. So there’s a little bit of
that physics thing going on. But we do a lot of
that very cubic — now I missed these
humans again. Right. So we try to play around
with the prospective a little bit there. JUSTIN: Oh, that’s awesome. MICHAEL: Maybe some special
enemies even that take advantage of a perspective or possibly
even bosses that are only on a certain plane. JUSTIN: Oh, cool. So is this — are you looking at
the same kind of structure as — is this more like a Resogun or
more like an Alienation in terms of like the progression
and everything. Is it more arcadey
where you just start fresh? MICHAEL: This is very Resogunny. It’s sort of a, let’s say,
more focus-core-gameplay thing. And then just replaying that. And we’ll be adding
a lot of challenges. Basically everything
that we did with Resogun, we’ll try to do
similar things and then, you know, add more
according to, let’s say, player-based feedback. JUSTIN: Yeah. Resogun ended up a very
different game by the end. MICHAEL: It did. JUSTIN: I don’t know if I
want to say the end of it’s life cycle, people still play it. MICHAEL: And we just
did an update to it too with the 4K HDR. JUSTIN: Oh, yeah. Oh, is HDR enabled on that too? MICHAEL: HDR also. JUSTIN: That’s
going to look amazing. MICHAEL: It’s pretty good. JUSTIN: I just got
a 4K HDR TV, and, oh my goodness, I can’t believe
what a difference it makes. MICHAEL: Well, Resogun,
that’s something you need to check out then for sure. JUSTIN: Yeah. I guess it’s time to
boot that bad boy back up. MICHAEL: And these are the same
things that we’re looking for in Nex Machina, but currently we
haven’t announced anything for PS4 Pro, but it will
be on PS4 Pro for sure. JUSTIN: Okay.
Great. MICHAEL: We just need to
fine-tune it in the shop a couple more times. JUSTIN: Of course. So this is one of
the secret routes. MICHAEL: So right now
we’re on a secret route, and this is actually, again,
on a different perspective. JUSTIN: Oh, okay. MICHAEL: I keep dying, so
maybe I should try to focus. Usually these are a bit harder. So even though currently
we are on the first level, this route will be a lot
harder, and I will die. But, again, this is
where you want to be in terms of score hunting.
There’s also secret stuff, like, in the rooms that are not secret
rooms so we put a lot of these alternative pathways
to kind of — JUSTIN: How extensive do
these alternate pathways get? Does it get to the point where
you might face different bosses or something or are
they just, little bonus, like, detours in
the middle of levels? MICHAEL: Very likely the
first option you just mentioned. JUSTIN: Oh, okay. MICHAEL: Can’t promise anything,
but we would love to do mini-bosses that are only
available through secret routes. And that’s kind of our way to
add re-playability in there. So you come back and see —
now I lost all my lives here. JUSTIN: But you can continue.
I won’t hold it against you. MICHAEL: Exactly.
But, yeah. So that’s something
we’re looking at. I’m hopeful we’ll get
that in the final game. And also it’s something that we
want to have a long life with, so we might even add a
variation campaign or, you know, a lot of challenges
and different mixing up of the usual because it’s a different
structure than Resogun. It’s not just a
certain amount of levels. Here we have a lot more
flexibility in our routes and so on. JUSTIN: You’re making expert
use of this dash maneuver. MICHAEL: Well, see here,
you have to, again. Something that we don’t really
teach you in the first level that well, but then if
you want to go forward, you need to be able to
dash and also kill the guys. JUSTIN: So it’s like that
dash can be used defensively and offensively. You can dash through
enemies and stuff. MICHAEL: And that’s like
with a lot of our games, people started
doing — you know, twin sticks in general, there’s
a thing called moonwalking when you’re just running away
from the enemies backwards and shooting at them. So here we want to add things
that make you do more offensive things. So you run towards the enemies. But that’s kind of trade off that you might
actually hit them. JUSTIN: Is there a
cool down on the dash? I think I hear a
sound effect there. MICHAEL: There’s a little
bit there. Exactly. So right now it’s sound effect. I think there’s a visual also,
but currently you can only see the head box on top
of the character. JUSTIN: Oh, yeah. MICHAEL: But, again, this
is a fairly early demo. This is one we announced
and launched at PSX. JUSTIN: Okay. MICHAEL: This is actually
available in all the PlayStation 4 demo kiosks
around the world. JUSTIN: Oh.
Awesome. MICHAEL: Europe
and North America. JUSTIN: So you’re
talking about when you, like, go to a retail store
and you see a PS4 set up? MICHAEL: Right.
And you get to play this. And it’s set up in a way
where you can leave your score, your name tag there, so
you can actually play like an arcade game, so. JUSTIN: It’s the new arcade. MICHAEL: Exactly. Well, I mean, that’s kind of —
all we do is we want to really try to recreate the
arcades in a way, so that’s kind of our
mission plan as developers too. JUSTIN: Nice. So, yeah.
This game looks incredible. I notice that while you were — or at least while I
was playing earlier — I noticed my weapon getting
stronger after a little while. Is that tied to a multiplier? MICHAEL: So there’s a
pick up for the main weapon, and there’s — so
dash, main weapon, and special weapon have
those special pick-ups that you see in the world. I haven’t seen one of
the ones you picked up. Or, of course, if you
also die, you lose it. JUSTIN: Okay. Here’s the spot that I
got hung up on earlier. Let’s see if you can — MICHAEL: So there’s a weapon
you can see up there. If I get that, then I
get the triple burst. JUSTIN: Nice, nice. MICHAEL: But, again, these
are things that might change, and also we want to do
variations of the campaign. So, you know, if we make a
very different main weapon, for example, we can
just kind of do a modifier for a week
for that. But, yeah. I don’t know if I’ll be able
to get to the final boss here. I think you got my score beat
because every time you lose those five lives, then you
restart from the beginning. JUSTIN: Oh, no. MICHAEL: So I don’t know
if I’ll be able to — JUSTIN: I think I had to
continue here too, so. MICHAEL: Okay. So there’s a
chance you’re saying. JUSTIN: I think you have a shot. MICHAEL: All right. I don’t know if they’ll
let me back into Finland. JUSTIN: I think it’s
likely that you beat my score. MICHAEL: Let see. Let’s see I’ll try
to get these guys. But, yeah.
It’s a lot of fun. It’s a very simplistic arcade. I think a lot of people
expect this from Housemarque, and we’re very happy to deliver. JUSTIN: Yeah. You guys have really kind of
mastered — we were talking about it earlier how you kind of
take these classic formulas and I wouldn’t say turn
them on their head, but kind of put your own spin
on them and bring them into the modern age. I probably wouldn’t go
back and play a ton of Robotron these days.
I still love it, but. MICHAEL: Yeah. It’s fun for very small bursts,
and now we’re just trying to bring it to the modern era where
you can actually play it for a longer time and still get
that very familiar feeling. JUSTIN: Get that adrenaline. MICHAEL: Right.
Exactly so. JUSTIN: Your games are very
good at getting that adrenaline pumping. MICHAEL: That hectic — JUSTIN: Yeah. MICHAEL: Yeah. It’s
definitely something — well, some people can actually
do it for a long time. Personally, for me, half an
hour might be enough of our games at a time. JUSTIN: I remember getting real
sweaty palms playing Resogun trying to get high
score runs going. MICHAEL: I’ve got to give you
a shout out over to Britty, and I think he
lives in Las Vegas. He actually beat Superstarter’s
HD score that’s been on the top list for six years. JUSTIN: Really. MICHAEL: So there’s still
guys who actually play. He played it for 6 hours
and 15 minutes straight. JUSTIN: Oh, my goodness.
What? MICHAEL: And that was — well, then he got the
new high score, so. There’s still guys
like that out there. You know, those same people were
probably playing Defender in the 80s. JUSTIN: You guys should just
build a kill screen into your game once you
reach a certain point. “We got a kill screen coming
up if anyone’s interested.” MICHAEL: Exactly. But definitely it’s
a very hectic thing. We don’t have that “if you
have a pacemaker” warning in the beginning of our games yet,
but epilepsy warning definitely there for a reason. JUSTIN: Yeah. Yeah.
This looks incredible. I can only imagine how cool
all of these particles and laser beams and everything are
going to look with HDR. MICHAEL: And we want to do more.
We’ve been teasing a bit. Currently, have a very
early implementation of our new voxel tech here. On our Twitter we actually
showed off some GIFs of very experimental things where
everything turns into voxels and just — so there’s a
lot of stuff we can do, and hopefully before we launch
we can show more of that, so. JUSTIN: And is that just
@Housemarque for your Twitter? MICHAEL: Yeah.
@Housemarque is our Twitter. We are in Europe, so our
tweets usually correspond to those time zones. But definitely we’ll be showing
a lot more of the game before we launch. JUSTIN: Awesome. MICHAEL: Which is probably
going to be around this summer. JUSTIN: Oh, cool. MICHAEL: So no
definite dates yet. JUSTIN: Sure, sure.
I won’t hold I to it. MICHAEL: Yeah. Well, I mean, when
the game’s done, we’ll put it out there. And it’s better than
doing something too early. JUSTIN: Yeah.
Cool. MICHAEL: I did barely —
I put some more effort in towards the end there. JUSTIN: And then so if
you move around here, I think it was like
moving all those voxels. Oh, my goodness.
You destroyed me. Come on, man.
Making me look bad here. MICHAEL: I get to go back home. JUSTIN: I got to question
my own gamer cred here. MICHAEL: But when
a game comes out, you play for a while — JUSTIN: I’ll take you on then. MICHAEL: And
you’ll challenge me. We’ll do it head-to-head then. JUSTIN: Awesome.
Well, this has been Nex Machina. Michael, thank you so
much for joining us. MICHAEL: Thank you. JUSTIN: This will be out
sometime aiming for Summer. No definite date yet. MICHAEL: Summer 2017.
Hopefully early summer. And if not, later summer. JUSTIN: Okay. Well, one or the other.
Awesome. Well, thanks again. We’ll have more on Nex Machina
on PlayStation Blog leading up to release, so
please stay tuned. [OUTRO MUSIC PLAYING]

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