The Incredible Interview

by the NWR Staff - November 12, 2005, 9:47 am PST

Learn all about The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer from the game's developers.

Contributor Robert Hubbs of Gaming Vision recently interviewed Heavy Iron Studios about their upcoming game for THQ, The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer.

Q: Is the game a direct sequel to the movie or does it take a different approach to where we were left off at the end of the movie?

Heavy Iron: The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer is the video game follow up to the Academy Award-winning film from last year, and it enables players to find out what happens to The Incredibles after the Underminer shows up.

Q: What direction did you want to take this game after the release of the first Incredibles game?

Heavy Iron: From a story-telling standpoint, there was a temptation to offer further adventures of The Incredibles family, but the film leaves you with such a juicy cliffhanger and a new villain, so we felt compelled to explore the Underminer. We also knew that Frozone absolutely had to be a playable character in this new game, which also fit our vision for playing multiple supers at the same time.

Q: What did Pixar do to help with the development of The Incredibles: Rise Of The Underminer?

Heavy Iron: We worked very closely with Disney and the Incredibles team at Pixar to ensure that we had a solid understanding of the Underminer’s true character, origin, underground world, evil plans, and robot minions to carry them out. There was also tremendous collaboration between Heavy Iron, Pixar, and Disney on the game’s story, dialog, script, and enemy design.

Q: What changes did you make to the game play and control of each of the characters from the first game?

Heavy Iron: In the new game, players can take control of Mr. Incredible and Frozone and switch between them at any time. Both characters play true to their innate super powers where Mr. Incredible brings tremendous strength and power to the fight and Frozone has the coolest ice moves ever! You can play a single player game controlling and switching between the duo, or a friend can jump in and play one of the heroes with you at any time.

Q: What kind of fun super powers will we get to abuse in ROTU?

Heavy Iron: We added made some strength adjustments to Mr. Incredible’s move set, and the addition of Frozone creates a completely new character to play. Frozone has a freeze ray and an ice glide as well as a few other moves. We also added unique “Super” moves for both heroes.

Q: What is the multiplayer gameplay like? Are there any team combos or combination super powers that we can use? What are they like?

Heavy Iron: We set out with the goal of making the multiplayer gameplay seamless to the single player experience. So a second player can join the action at any time and progress with the other player, and he can also drop out and allow the first player to continue on without him. The two heroes work very effectively together as Frozone’s freeze powers play right into Mr. Incredible’s super strength. Nothing is cooler than seeing Mr. Incredible smash a huge robot that Frozone just turned into a giant ice cube!

Q: What kind of minigames, if any, do you have in The Incredibles: ROTU?

Heavy Iron: As our supers battle through the onslaught of the Underminer’s robot army, players will unlock what we call side missions in this game, and these missions challenge players to battle against the clock to clear the area of evil robots, save research scientists, and a host of other challenges.

Q: Are there any unlockable Supers in the game?

Heavy Iron: You get to play both Mr. Incredibles and Frozone right from the start, and since this game takes place following the events of the film, all other Supers and Super Villains except for The Incredibles are presumed missing or worse.

Q: Is there any other unlockable content within the game?

Heavy Iron: We also have some spectacular and hidden concept art created by both Pixar and Heavy Iron for the Rise of the Underminer game. You will need to keep your eyes open to find it.

Q: Did you get the actors from the movie to do any voice overs for the game? How did that go?

Heavy Iron: The Underminer is voiced by none other than John Ratzenberger. You would never know just looking at him that he has the voice of a furious super-villain just under his mustache.

Q: Did you work closely with Pixar for the game's music? Are there any recurring tracks from the first game or from the movie?

Heavy Iron: None other than the composer from the last year’s film and video game, Michael Giacchino, did the music for Rise of the Underminer. We used a 72-piece orchestra and created completely new themes for Frozone and the Underminer, along with a few of the signature recurring themes from the film.

Q: Will The Incredibles: ROTU also get ported to the PSP?

Heavy Iron: The Incredibles: Rise of The Underminer is available for PS2, XBOX, GameCube, GBA, DS, Windows PC, and Mac. Additional versions of the game have not yet been determined.

Q: Do you have any more Incredibles games coming up in the horizon?

Heavy Iron: I can’t see that far into the future. It’s not one of my super powers, but The Incredibles are an amazing family with fantastic possibilities.

Q: Do you look forward to working on any future "The Incredibles" projects for the Xbox 360, PS3, and possibly even Revolution?

Heavy Iron: If that is where The Incredibles want to go, then we would welcome the opportunity to take them there.

Questions answered by Lyle Hall (Executive Producer), Stephen Townsend (Producer) and Greg Ecklund (Creative Director) of Heavy Iron Studios.

Interview conducted by Robert Hubbs of Gaming Vision.

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