Wolfenstein: Youngblood is due to take us to the '80s next month when it releases on PC, PS4, Switch, and Xbox One, and at E3 this year we spoke with executive producer Jerk Gustafsson about where the idea for a co-op game came from in the first place.
"We've been wanting to try this out for quite some time, and as we've said, it's a spinoff story for Youngblood [so] it made perfect sense, let's try to do it now," he explained. "It's been a very appealing thought for us to just add another player in there and see how it works, and I'm very happy with it because it's great fun to play."
It turns out Arkane had a lot to do with the origins of this idea, and we asked about the partnership with the fellow Bethesda studio.
"It's been a very close collaboration. So we have gotten to know each other over the years, we've been part of the same family with Bethesda, and they are in the same time zone which makes it a bit easier as well, and we share very similar cultures in many ways," Gustafsson said.
"And so over the years we have always shared design ideas and we give feedback to each other and all these things, and at the time when we were finishing off New Colossus and they had released Death of the Outsider, we thought it was a good opportunity then to take that time to try to do something together, and when we decided to do that we also thought about what we're gonna do and how we're gonna use this opportunity as best as possible. Because of course we wanted to learn from each other and become better developers, but we also wanted to try something new, so we decided let's try a VR game - Cyberpilot - and let's go for co-op and take that step into our line that we've been wanting to."
"So we had then a Youngblood team, and Arkane guys have been integrated into the team. So it's not like we have just sent off something for them to work on and they send it back - they have been part of the team and the process, so it's been very, very rewarding for us."
Arkane is also a studio famous for their stellar level design, as seen in the likes of Dishonored, and when asked about whether this affected Youngblood, Gustafsson said:
"Quite a lot, absolutely. Like I said, we have a lot to learn from them, especially within level design since they are so excellent at it, but with that said, the co-op experience was also new to them, so some of these things we still have to figure out, how to approach the level design with two players instead of one player. But their expertise and their skill when it comes to these more open levels with different routes and different ways to approach combat helped us a lot, absolutely."
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