Making something fresh from something classic
Disney’s Illusion Island is out now for Nintendo Switch and a new Interview with the game’s creative director, AJ Grand-Scrutton has been shared by Shacknews Interviews.
You can watch the full interview above but here are some interesting tidbits from the Interview.
The makers of Illusion Island, Dlala Studios, went right into working on the game after wrapping work on Microsoft’s Battletoads reboot in 2020. When asked what lessons they learned moving from Battletoads to Mickey Grand-Scrutton says that they had a better idea on how to manage scope with their projects and admits that Battletoads may have been trying to be too many games at once.
When asked about how it was to work with Disney Grand-Scrutton says that they were incredibly easy to work with and that the only things to keep in mind was that the characters act like themselves and that the game feels like Mickey Mouse. He also goes on to say that studio Dlala put more pressure on themselves to deliver a product worthy of the Mickey name than Disney ever did.
Grand-Scrutton of course cites Mickey’s Castle of Illusion and World of Illusion games for Genesis as inspiration for the project. He also goes on to state that they hoped to combine those classic series with the modern sensibilities of 2D games like Rayman Origins/Legends and the Ori series. In fact, the reason that the game became a Metroid-vania is because the team felt that if the teams that made the original Mickey games for Genesis continued on they would’ve gone down the same path.
Lastly, Grand-Scrutton talks about the games’ striking 2D art style and discusses the pros and cons of opting for 2D or 3D animation. While 2D allows for more creative freedom it also requires major work to change if anything needs to be reworked. When asked why he feels more games don’t utilize 2D animation Grand-Scrutton replies that he feels its a skillset that has generally fallen by the wayside in the industry, you could hire tons of skilled 3D animators but struggle to find 2D ones.
He then goes on to add when designing the game all Beta builds featured the characters as pencil tests rather than full animation to make things easier whenever something needed to be reworked, he then goes on to add that he hopes they’ll be able to share those beta tests someday with the public.
There’s more information dropped in the Interview but we will leave that for you to watch and discover for yourself. Disney’s Illusion Island is available right now for Nintendo Switch.
A recently graduated creative writer hoping to work his way into the greater gaming sphere.