Jake: You guys make games from Lucas movies. Has there ever been talk of turning one of your games into a film from ILM or Lucasfilm?
Simon: Yes there has. I would love for it to come to that, and I think that now we're using ILM to do CG work for us and we're using Skywalker Sound to do digital sound work for us, as the companies work closer and closer, there's more and more chance of that happening somewhere in the future.
Andrew: Because isn't ILM helping you out with the Bounty Hunter game?
Jake: Sort of like what they did for The Dig?
Simon: Yeah, they did some of the effects from The Dig.
Tom: But nothing to this degree.
Andrew: Skywalker Sound has been involved too...
Simon: Skywalker Sound is doing sound on Bounty Hunter and on Clone Wars, and it's working so well we're going to use them more and more.
[Someone comes in to get Tom]
Sarah: Thanks for allowing us to monopolize your time for a while.
Simon: Whenever you want.
Tom: And you know, we can definitely have you sit down again with Simon at some point... it's actually, to me, it's fun to have offbeat questions like this. You know, the print press always asks the same kind of questions. And it's--
Simon: Yeah, they want to know the business model for Galaxies.
Tom: Well yeah, exactly... nobody wants to know the color of Simon's toothbrush.
Sarah: We wanna ask questions that our readers want to read. Internet kids.
Andrew: Oh, I do have another question. I remember last year you said you were expecting that this year you were going to get a lot of complaints about how there weren't enough Star Wars games. Have you gotten any death threats again this year?
Simon: No, I think some people are questioning the wisdom of what we're doing.
Andrew: It seems like you'd have to deal with that no matter what.
Simon: Well yeah, that's true. Other people are saying, "Why are you moving away from Star Wars when it's such bread and butter. So obviously, just keep building Star Wars games." The whole industry is kind of standardizing at the moment. Everything's around intellectual property and sequels and sports games, so people are wondering why we would want to go start building original properties again. No one else is doing that.
Tom: Well you know, and the other thing is there aren't that many companies that have such a rich history... and I think we do, and I think it's time for us to revisit some stuff that hasn't been seen for a while. Because it's still as vital now as it was then, and we can bring it to a whole new audience, so why not?
Jake: Do you guys ever talk about contracting old talent back into work on... new sequels to old games like, I don't know, like Steve Purcell, Bill Tiller, Peter Chan, and all the artists on Monkey Island games, and Dave Grossman? They're still out doing really similar stuff. Does that ever happen at all?
Simon: Yeah, actually. We recently hired a couple of people back who went off and did other things, can't tell you their names. But one of the people you just mentioned, we are talking to right now about doing exactly that kind of stuff.
Jake: Sounds good.
Simon: But I'm not going to tell you anything, because that would give it away.
Andrew: Yeah, I think we're all big fans of the people and not just the products.
Simon: Yeah yeah, and that's great.
Tom: The people are as of a part of the history as the games are.
Simon: Yeah, because the people put their personalities, especially people like Sean and Mike, they just put their personalities in the game so much.
Andrew: You should make trading cards with employee pictures on them.
Simon: Oh don't suggest that to them.
Sarah: 20th anniversary trading cards!
Jake: There ya go. You could have stats on the back.
[At this point, Tom has to leave Simon to fend for himself because of an interview with some obscure journalists from something called The New York Times.]
Simon: Okay, anything else quickly you want to ask?
Sarah: Um, I don't know off hand.
Simon: Well if you think of anything else before the end of tomorrow--
LucasArts then had us escorted out of the suite by security... or maybe it was Dan Petit, we can't remember. While nothing of particular importance was discovered the next day, Tom Sarris did volunteer that his toothbrush is clear purple, and sports the name of his dentist.
Thanks to Simon and Tom for setting aside time to do this interview.
Special thanks to Paco Vink of World of MI for the Simon caricature.