BioShock 2 Podcast, Episode Two

A second BioShock 2 podcast episode is available on the Cult of Rapture website, this time covering level design within the halls of Rapture. From the transcript:
ELIZABETH TOBEY: I still didn't quite understand exactly how Steve and Alex interacted from day-to-day, and what their workflow actually looked like, so I asked them to dig a bit deeper and tell me more about their process. As I said before, the duo are in charge of BioShock 2's fourth level, and as I didn't want to spoil any part of the game for our listeners, I asked them to talk about a hypothetical level instead of what they were actually building.

STEVE GAYNOR: It's the Circus Level. Spliced Clowns. You ever see a spliced clown? It's weird. Get ready for it.

ELIZABETH TOBEY: Steve and Alex's hypothetical level is derived from some old BioShock 2 plot rumors that flooded the internet just before the game was featured in Game Informer Magazine. While I appreciate their sense of humor, don't get your hopes up They're talking only in hypotheticals, and their level does not, in fact, feature any spliced clowns, or anything else they talk about. We were here to talk about level design, and not spoil an actual level but even in doing this, I saw how close Steve and Alex really were to one another, and what a good, and natural team they made.

STEVE GAYNOR: The nice thing is that we have art design collaboration from square one. So, everything starts on paper, and we essentially.a team like us gets a concept and some high level goals and themes, like from the creative director, lead level designer, saying, here's generally what the place is, and the kind of experience, broadly, that we want the player to have in the arc of the whole game, now you guys come up with what kind of objectives that might translate into specifically, and draw a bunch of paper layouts of the place, what are some major locations, how are they going to be situated in relation to one another, what would the flow through the space be, and art and design are working hand in hand on from the concept phase. Then, as stuff goes through review, what do the leads think of it, how can we make it better, is this or that not going work conceptually, and then it starts to go into 3D in the editor and we start prototyping the gameplay.