Jenova Chen praises David Cage
Jenova Chen, co-founder of Journey developer Thatgamecompany, has described Quantic Dream's David Cage as one of his "major allies" in the industry, because the two share the desire to "broaden the emotional coverage of games."
At first glance, the two couldn't be further apart, with Chen crafting minimalist, artistic experiences for PSN while Cage makes the likes of Heavy Rain, leaning on filmic language in his bid to improve storytelling in videogames. In an interview, however, Chen tells us he believes the two are cut from the same cloth.
"David Cage is probably one of my major allies in the game industry," he tells us. "We both care about the emotional experience, and broadening the emotional coverage of games, because so many games are about action, horror or thrillers.
"There's no romance or drama. There's nothing about the meaning of life."
There's merit to Chen's argument, and there's certainly food for thought in the fact that Thatgamecompany is praised for stripping back gameplay mechanics to the bare essentials while Cage is criticised for doing much the same. Why? Chen hints that it all comes down to expectations.
"I'm a big supporter of David Cage," he says, "although he's doing it with a much bigger budget."
Elsewhere in the interview Chen details the many gameplay systems that were discarded to ensure Journey's co-operative play worked as it should. He points us towards a thread on Thatgamecompany's forums, titled Journey Apologies, in which players apologise to their anonymous travelling companions for leaving them partway through, as evidence it all worked out.
The full interview is in our new issue, E240, which should be with subscribers any day now and on newsagents' shelves next Wednesday, April 11.