Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart has said the call to do South Park: The Game came directly from the licensor itself, South Park Studios, rather than publisher THQ.
Urquhart told Game Informer it was a new experience being approached directly by the licence holder rather than the publisher.
“When the South Park project came up, it was kind of a big surprise,” he said. “What was interesting about it was we were contacted directly by South Park. Normally, how it works, is usually that a publisher calls us and say, ‘hey, we have a licence, we want you to make a game.’
“But this time, it was the licence holder themselves. And it was exciting because it’s great to work on licenced product, but to actually be working initially straight for the licenser, it meant that the guys who it was their baby were the ones who were going to be telling what they want. And on top of it, it was great once we started working with them was finding out how much into games they were.”
From there, the studio came together with creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker, attempting to figure out how it could give the game the South Park look. Urquhart said if it couldn’t nail down the look and feel of the world of South Park, “then why make it?”
“When we first met with Matt and Trey, it was really first figuring out what do they know, what do we know, what do they really want from a game? And they ended up talking about games in general. They both play a ton of games, Trey’s put 80, 90, 100 hours into Oblivion and things like that.
“And so a lot of it was saying, ‘what’s their vision for South Park in relation to all the games that we’ve played?’ And what was interesting, and what it came down to, was really talking about what’s that first step? What’s that first thing we need to do to make sure that this can really be a South Park game? And by the end of the meeting, it just came down to if we can’t make the game look like South Park, then why make it.”
With all the wackiness and insane humour of South Park, issues could arise with the ESRB. The CEO said, for now, it would not be restricted in the near future, but if any problems arose, it would meet them when the time came.
“The first thing is this needs to be South Park, it needs to be outrageous, it needs to have crazy crap in it, it needs a lot of swearing, it needs a lot of children dying, it needs things that happen that are just crazy. And then if we have problems, we’ll deal with them.
But the goal is let’s not restrict ourselves right now, let’s make it South Park, make it nuts. And then, as they say, cross that bridge when we come to it.”
South Park: The Game launches next year for PS3, 360 and PC. Details on it are here.