Colombian Andrés Molina is one of the people behind the next version of the franchise, titled “Garden Warfare 2”, which will be launched in 2016. Andrés Molina is one of the designers behind “Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2, “the continuation of a franchise that started as a game for mobile devices under the label PopCap Games and today has versions for consoles and PC, in addition to being produced by EA. While EA bought PopCap Games in mid-2011, the style of “Plants vs. Zombies “remains the same, in a way. And of course, one of the great values of the game is its carefree animation, its thematic line that, from the improbability of fantasy, raises a deeply amusing scene.
This is one of the things that most attract the game to Andres Molina, one of the designers behind “Garden Warfare 2,” a project that will be released in the spring of next year. “What I like the most is that it is a game that does not take itself very seriously. It is very entertaining and at the level of game development any idea is worth, at least to explore it. One is having lunch in the office and he thinks of something very silly, that in any other project would be rejected immediately, but here is a thought to try to see what happens. The idea is to do something funny and humorous. “
Molina has a degree in systems engineering from the Universidad de Los Andes and a specialization in video game design at the Vancouver Film School in Canada. Thanks to an internship while studying he connected with Relic Entertainment, where he stayed to work for four years before joining the team of “Plants vs. Zombies “in EA.
“The development process is quite technical, because one is creating software, ultimately. But everything starts with an idea, although an idea can have anyone: here what matters is the execution. One can say how about if we have a gun that shoots rolls of toilet paper, to give an example. And from there it begins to ask: what character has it, how it behaves that weapon, what are their abilities, what kind of damage does, how the recharge works, are continuous or semiautomatic shots … All this is already the process of designing the Game, which is to bring the idea to an applicable point. This is something that is done in a very open way and that I really like the team, and in general this industry: new things come from people who are in other projects or even the players themselves and that makes everything very dynamic “.
How much participation has the community of players in the development of the project?
A lot. We like listening to people, receiving feedback and acting on it. In “Garden Warfare 2” we have game modes totally inspired by what the users told us. The first version of the game, “Garden Warfare 1”, was mainly online multiplayer and we received many comments about people’s desire to play in other ways: with their friends or alone in their homes. That is precisely what we have done with this project. We have new game modes to play offline at home, alone, or with friends. We also have variants of characters inspired by things that the same community has done.
How did you connect with video games?
Since small. I think the first game I played was “Prince of Persia” for computer, the old, the classic. My first console was the Nintendo NES and from there I started to play seriously: “Mario”, “Duck Hunt”. But I think the console to which I put the plug seriously for the first time was the Nintendo 64. This is a matter of passion. It is very true the old saying “if you love what you do then it is never work”. Studying Systems Engineering already inclined me to things like interactive environments or visual computing. When I graduated, I had to decide what to do with my life. I love video games, so I decided to follow this path.
What is your work in “Garden Warfare 2”?
Now what I’m focused on is the design of game modes. There is multiplayer, which is to play online or locally with friends, or against them. Another, which I’m working on most of all, is called Graveyard Ops, and it’s a defense mode in which one, and his friends, is defending himself from attack waves. At the level of the day we are using Frostbite, which is the EA game engine. This one has enough technical components and one that has to think in a quite logical way when defining the steps of the game because one is developing software, but not so much from the writing of …