June 16, 2021

Xbox One X

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Why Below has taken half a decade to make

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“Making a game is obscenely challenging,” Nathan Vella, boss of Toronto, Canada developer Capybara tells me over the phone.

“It’s a little bit physically challenging, but it’s always mentally challenging. Making a project pushes you. The metaphor I always use is – I don’t know if you’ve ever been to the desert or somewhere ridiculously hot, and you’re standing out in crazy warm weather, it’s 35 degrees and you’re like, oh my gosh, it’s so hot! But it’s a warm hot, so you’re like, okay, I can kind of deal with it, and you’re used to it not being this hot so you think it’s kind of nice, and you acclimate yourself to the ridiculous heat in a desert.

“Having a five-year project is like putting a giant magnifying glass between you and the desert and the sun. It makes everything so much harder. It makes every problem so much bigger. It requires so much dedication and commitment from the team just to keep moving forward and past a certain point. It’s really disappointing to delay games. It’s really disappointing to miss deadlines. But at the same time, nothing is more disappointing than putting out a game you’re not happy with and aren’t proud of and can’t speak honestly to players about.”

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