Thrillville - Developer Diaries Week Seven

David Braben, Chairman of Frontier Developments and Executive Producer on Thrillville

My role as executive producer means that I have an overview of the game as it's being developed. It's up to me to ensure that it stays true to the original vision - to make sure it works well overall.

The idea for Thrillville came from a general feeling we had something more to offer over and above the strategy/simulation games of the past. Why should the "computer people" get all the fun? Playing mini-golf, flirting, going on great rollercoasters that we'd built - that sort of thing. We wanted to take part in the action, not watch. Our PC game RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 very much concentrates on the simulation and "tycoon" side - the managing and running a park, as opposed to visiting one, as you get in Thrillville.

I think the key element is that great feeling you get when first entering a real theme park - one of almost endless possibilities and excitement. There is so much to do; you know full well there probably won't be able to do everything within the limited time you are there, so you choose the things you like most.

As game creators, theme parks offer us a great environment to do a lot of varied, fun experiences in a way that feels natural rather than forced - it is a great opportunity to create those beautifully simple "in-the-zone" types of gameplay we rarely get these days - most often now associated with "retro" gaming.