Interview: Speedrunners for Xbox One
Split-screen multiplayer is making a comeback on Xbox One. Titles like #IDARB, Screencheat and SWORDY are all pushing players back onto their sofas and encouraging them to invite friends over. This month, we spoke to Mike Rose, talent scout at publisher and developer tinyBuild, about Speedrunners, ID@Xbox and laughing in your friends’ faces. The game has a laser focus on multiplayer, with players racing around a platforming ‘track’. If you fall behind, you’re eliminated; eliminate all the other players and you win a point. Here’s what he had to say…
What helped you make the decision to develop SpeedRunners for the Xbox One over other consoles?
SpeedRunners actually got its first big break on Xbox 360, when DoubleDutch Games brought the original browser game to Xbox Live Indie Games. It was the incredible reaction from Xbox fans that made the studio realize that something much bigger really needed to be done with this concept — so it makes sense for us to say thanks to those Xbox gamers who loved our game so much the first time around, by bringing the game to Xbox One.
Plus, Xbox has always been so well known for great online multiplayer games, so SpeedRunners fits that description perfectly!
How does it feel to see SpeedRunners categorized in the Xbox store alongside huge, triple-A titles?
It’s super exciting! We’re finally seeing the level playing field that indies have always dreamed of. Just a couple of years ago you’d see console gamers saying on forums, “Eww, no more indie games, they suck!” But that sentiment is disappearing rapidly — at least from our perspective — and more people are finally getting to grips with smaller, cheaper titles, and realizing that they can easily hold their own against the triple-As.
Local multiplayer is something of a rare thing in modern gaming. What made you want to include it for SpeedRunners?
Well, it just made sense, right? Building online multiplayer into SpeedRunners was a pretty nightmarish ordeal truth be told, as is building online multiplayer for any indie developer, so we’re incredibly proud that we’ve managed to get it working online so flawlessly. But the feel of SpeedRunners local multiplayer is just unrivaled — being able to physically turn to your friend and laugh in their face as you tear off into the distance is glorious. And of course, the original Xbox Live Indie Games version of SpeedRunners was local multiplayer only, so we’re looking to keep the people who loved the original happy too.
Pick up this month’s issue of X-ONE magazine to read more about the indie titles that are bringing so much variety to the Xbox One. You can also download a digital copy of the magazine to your tablet, smartphone or computer, or order a physical copy from our eShop.