Inside Pulse 12

411 Exclusive Interview: Adam Ryland (PC)

DISCLAIMER! Alex and Adam sat down to do a fun interview. This is two guys having fun and making at least two jokes towards British Pop Culture that most non-Brit’s won’t get. Alex is not warning that if you are looking for an in-depth discussion on visual basic, depth into either Adam or Alex’s soul, or hints about EWR 4.0 you probably won’t find it here. You will find lots of dry sarcastic wit though.

Alex: Okay Adam, How about a biography. Who you are, where you’re from and what you’ve done to make video game and wrestling fans know who you are and possibly stalk you leaving bits of their undergarments in your mailbox.

Adam: My name’s Adam Ryland, I’m 22, from Birmingham England, and I’m the creator\designer\writer\big cheese behind the Extreme Warfare series of wrestling simulators. Currently I’m working on version 4.0, which is so
highly anticipated that some people have offered their first born children in exchange for an advance copy. I declined these offers, if only for logistic reasons.

Alex: What made you decide to make EWR?

Adam: Originally it was a huge self-made card game. When I got tired of losing my prize D-Von Dudley card down the back of my sofa, I turned it into a computer game, as it’s a lot harder to lose D-Von when he’s a collection of
bytes on my hard drive rather than a piece of paper. That was about a decade a go, and since then it’s grown into a veritable behemoth, amassing a small army of followers in the process.

Alex: What do you think of the near Cult like following your game has garnered? From fans making websites with extra characters to be added to the game, to even the cheat editor that allows injured people to no longer be injured and the like?

Adam: Well, I am often sent mails calling me a God, so Cult may be the right world. Of course, calling me a God is ridiculous – if I were God, the earth would have been created in 3 days, not 7, the 4th day I would have announced
my retirement from planet building, and on the 5th day I would have announced that Earth 2.0 was in the works. People still would have complained about the interface of course (“the ocean’s are too blue”).

Alex:. What the hell keeps possessing you to keep making edition after edition to the game? Is it fan requests or just a perfectionist streak?

Adam: Mainly it’s because I play the game myself, and whenever I think “I really wish I could do X”, I quickly follow that up with “heck, I have the code, why don’t I just add X”. So most of the additions in any new version
of EWR are things that I wanted while playing.

Alex: . Does it annoy you when fans write you letters saying ‘I disagree with the stats you gave so and so?’ even though you clearly included an editor with the program?

Adam: Yes. Although it’s even more annoying when they download stats that someone else has done and then complain to me about them – stats I have never even seen before!

Alex: What’s the funniest letter you’ve gotten from someone who took EWR WAY too seriously?

Adam: One guy sent me a 15-page list of suggestions for the next game. The first one was that he wanted to see the matches actually happen on screen. I didn’t read the rest.

Alex: What other wrestling games do you play or enjoy? Or do you hate them all?

Adam: I have actually played nearly every single wrestling game on any platform released in the last 10 years (seriously). The old AJPW games were pretty cool, the Smackdown series is a blast in 2 player, the old SNES game
Saturday Night Slammasters (Muscle Bomber in the US) was way ahead of its time, and No Mercy is cool too. As for PC games, I actually won a free copy of TNM7 in a magazine competition ages ago, although I found it a bit dull
after a few days. I haven’t really played any PC wrestling games that I’d recommend that much to be honest.

Alex: Have any actual wrestlers wrote in complaining about their stats or to give props to you?

Adam: I know that The Hurricane has played it, although I’ve never spoken to him personally. I’ve had quite a lot of indi workers mail me to get themselves added – Spiffy Sean Styles, Trik Nasty, Cade Sydal, Kriss Sprules, Carlton Kaz, and Damien Kass just being a handful. I wish more workers would mail me though, as it’s cool to hear from the people the game is based on. My ultimate goal is to find out whether my favourite wrestler Chris Jericho has played it or not.

Alex: Has HHH or the Undertaker tried to bury the popularity of your game in any way shape or form?

Adam: No, but when they see how low their stats are in 4.0, that might change.

Alex: Has a VG company offered to buy your game from you? Like how SSI bought Dungeon Hack and completely changed it

Adam: Unfortunately not. Although having spent 10 years programming the world’s most popular freeware wrestling sim, and having played almost every wrestling game written since 1990, I’d love to have a crack at designing a wrestling video game, I think I could put together a pretty damn awesome design.

Alex: Why is there an Indian restaurant on every street in England but you can never find a Japanese one? (Note to readers: Alex lives in Claygate, Surrey, England and Minneapolis, MN)
Adam: No idea, but somewhere in India right now, someone’s complaining that there’s a Japanese restaurant on every street, but no English ones.

Alex: Was it hard setting a game in North America being a European? (You’d be surprised how many people don’t seem to get you’re a Brit. Like you HAVE to be American or something) By this I mean things like the TV stations, ratings, and stats for Indy guys you’ve never seen.

Adam: I never really considered it to be honest. Most stats for TV stations, etc, are readily available, and anything I couldn’t research I just made up. I don’t think I’m going to win any awards for accuracy as far as the EWR stats go. :0)

Alex: After 4.0 will that really be it? Do you think people will finally let you go on and make something else or will your inbox be deluged with poorly written and capitalized emails from people who think Jeff Jerrett just is too over in the game or that Bret should have lower stats thanks to his stroke?

Adam: 4.0 will probably be it, yes, simply because adding any more would require a change to the game engine itself, and I don’t really have any enthusiasm for that sort of dull project. Besides, it’s been 10 years since the first version, I think that’s long enough for anyone.

Alex: Who are your favorite wrestlers? And are their stats in the game horribly biased towards them?

Adam: Jericho, Snow, Dreamer, Hurricane and Storm. And yes, their stats are all pretty good, although in most of their cases, that’s because they’re vastly underrated in real life. On the flip side, wrestlers I actively dislike generally get the short end of the stick as far as stats go.

Alex: Seriously, what the f*ck DOES giving to charity do?

Adam: It gives you a warm fuzzy glow inside. And throwing money around is also
a great way to attract women.

Alex: How many crazy NWA/WCW fans wrote you and have said ‘Where the ^%&^$^%$ is War Games? You &*^(*&%&* suck because there is no War games. You’re an obvious WWE biased fan because you included Survivor matches but not War Games. You Suxx!’?

Adam: Well I think “WCW fans” is an oxymoron, so we should stop right there.

Alex: Have you noticed when movies hit the theatres in the UK, they’re on DVD already in the US? Doesn’t that just make you want an all regions DVD player or for PAL outlets not to blow up NTSC electronics?

Adam: Movies I can handle, it’s when we’re constantly 1 season behind every US TV show that annoys me. Especially when you accidentally read spoilers and ruin any suspense. Grrrrrr.

Alex: Cheeky Girls or Girls Aloud? Gareth Gates or Will Young? No more Music Star in the Making Reality TV Shows, or the Entire Cast of EastEnders spontaneously combusting?

Adam: I don’t watch reality TV shows or soaps. So, er, all of them spontaneously combusting would be just fine with me.

Alex: From a purely American standpoint: Why are Posh and Becks (David Beckham and Posh Spice)in every paper and on TV every damn day??? Do people really care that much in the UK about a has been pop star and a Footballer?

Adam: That’s not entirely true – I once watched an entire hour of TV without them being mentioned once.

Alex:. And finally, the most important question of all, Why aren’t I in the game?

Adam: Well, frankly you should be, if for no other reason that your name is an anagram of Lex Dracula, which is the most kick-ass wrestling name ever.

END Interview

Well people, this probably wasn’t what you expected, but hopefully you found it funny. However, as Bebito has done a contest this week, it appears I’m going to have to look like a copycat even THOUGH I did this interview before he came back so…nyah nyah nyah.

RETROGRADING EWR CONTEST

Anyway, now that you know that Scotsman and Scott Keith aren’t the only 411 staff member to be in the game, which is pretty damn good company to be keeping, and that I’m the only one entered as a wrestler into the game here is the contest with the winner getting a free copy of a game mentioned in one of my columns. And I promise it won’t be Heroes of the Lance.

Simply put people: Design my stats for EWR 3.0 before they come out for 4.0! Make me a manager, staff member, owner, wrestler, whatever. Write the stats, tell me what you’d put me in (if any) and describe whether you’d have me job job job to Naked Mideon or my rise to the standard-bearer for MLW (yeah right).

What I need in an email is a list of my stats, gimmick, etc and the text from an angle or match you put me in with the three rating levels. I’ll do entire column showing off the weird shit you put me through and highlight the winner. As I said, whoever does the best job, gets a free game that is certainly not Superman 64! And by best, I don’t mean giving me stats of straight 100. I mean I want justification for my stats. You give me a 23 in brawling. Say why! A 100 in charisma? Well that’s a given, but state why. I’m looking for creativity, originality, and humour. And this contest is open to EVERYONE. 411 staff members, members of Square who are looking for a way to get back at me, ITSC board members, EVERYONE. I want some interesting emails here people!

And I’ll be participating too, just to show my weird ass character. And if anyone is going to be that nuts to want actual background info on me to build their character…well, I’ll be creeped out, but I’ll give it to you!