Questions for Stoo Cambridge

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merman
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Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:43 pm

The legendary artist and former member of Sensible Software, Stoo Cambridge, will be my next "In the Chair" interview for RG.

Stoo started out with a VIC-20 and moved on to the C64, before he was able to afford an Amiga (but he did also draw art for the Atari ST).
After working freelance for a few years he joined Jon Hare and Chris Yates at Sensible Software, working on some of their classic titles.
Perhaps Stoo's best known work is on the first two Cannon Fodder games, including those classic level intro animations.
In recent years Stoo has been working on mobile and phone games, including the Blobbit series, and went back to his roots to work on Tower Software's J2ME version of Cannon Fodder.

There are also some interesting unreleased games in Stoo's back catalogue - including Molotov Man (SNES), The Last Starship(Amiga), the lost Sensible games Mirror Signal Manslaughter and Have A Nice Day, and Joe Blow (PS1)

You need to be quick with your questions as I am speaking to Stoo this week.

A quick summary of some career highlights:

Renaissance 1 (1990)
The Final Conflict (1990)
Feudal Lords (1990)
Insector Hecti in the Inter Change (1991)
The Executioner (1991)
Mega lo Mania (1992) - Mega Drive
Cannon Fodder (1993)
Sensible Golf (1994) - Graphics, Course Design
Cannon Fodder 2 (1994)
World Championship Soccer II (1994) - Mega Drive
Sensible World of Soccer (1995) - Amiga
Road Rash II (2000) - Game Boy Color
Alone in the Dark: The New Nightmare (2001) - Game Boy Color
Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002) - Game Boy Advance
Cannon Fodder (2004) - J2ME
Monkey King (2004) - Mobile
Sensible Soccer (2005) - Xbox 360
Alien Hominid (2006) - Game Boy Advance
1000 Tiny Claws (2011) - Mobile
Last edited by merman on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Rory Milne
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by Rory Milne » Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:00 pm

How much fun was Jon Hare to work with, and what stories can you tell us that won't land Andrew in court for libel? ;)

Did you have a career break between 1995 and 2000, or did Road Rash II just have a very long development? It's probably neither, but I couldn't help but notice the gap in your resume.

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The Laird
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by The Laird » Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:36 pm

Although you didn't list it there I believe Stoo worked on the enhanced version of International Sensible Soccer for the Jaguar.

So my question is - What was the Jaguar hardware like to work with it and do you wish you had done more games for it?

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by mr jenzie » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:36 pm

when you saw your first character in cannon fodder DIE, what were your feelings?
:mrgreen:

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by DRS » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:07 am

He sounds an interesting bloke Merman! Hope it goes well. My question is...

What artists, NOT in the games business, have influenced your art style?

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:42 am

Rory Milne wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:00 pm
How much fun was Jon Hare to work with, and what stories can you tell us that won't land Andrew in court for libel? ;)

Did you have a career break between 1995 and 2000, or did Road Rash II just have a very long development? It's probably neither, but I couldn't help but notice the gap in your resume.
I will (partly) answer that. Stoo was involved in a three-year project for a PS1 game (Joe Blow - Adventures in Dreamworld) that was never released. It was a difficult time for him, but it's something that will be covered in the article.
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Rory Milne
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by Rory Milne » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:45 pm

merman wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:42 am
Rory Milne wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:00 pm
How much fun was Jon Hare to work with, and what stories can you tell us that won't land Andrew in court for libel? ;)

Did you have a career break between 1995 and 2000, or did Road Rash II just have a very long development? It's probably neither, but I couldn't help but notice the gap in your resume.
I will (partly) answer that. Stoo was involved in a three-year project for a PS1 game (Joe Blow - Adventures in Dreamworld) that was never released. It was a difficult time for him, but it's something that will be covered in the article.
Got you, thanks. :) I thought there might be an interesting story there.

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:02 pm

So here's the importance of research... Stoo is credited in various places online for bitmap graphics in the game "Eco" from Denton Designs/Ocean. But... he was never involved.

Also, there's a typo up there I had to fix - I called his unreleased Amiga game The Last Starfighter, when it should really be The Last Starship. It's not connected to the classic 1980s film...
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by kebabinho » Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:17 pm

Did they get any complaints around the opening music for cannon fodder on the amiga

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Fri Feb 15, 2019 8:35 pm

kebabinho wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:17 pm
Did they get any complaints around the opening music for cannon fodder on the amiga

Apologies, we did the interview on Wednesday - but I will e-mail Stoo and try to get you an answer to share here.
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by NorthWay » Sat Feb 16, 2019 5:21 pm

Is it really Stoo - that isn't some pet/nick name?

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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Sun Feb 17, 2019 11:43 am

NorthWay wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 5:21 pm
Is it really Stoo - that isn't some pet/nick name?
Stoo short for Stuart - what he used to enter into high-score tables to save time.
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Thu Feb 21, 2019 5:21 pm

So, the interview lasted 90 minutes and the transcript is 13,000 words... now to cram as much of the interesting stuff into the article...
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by merman » Tue Feb 26, 2019 11:52 am

kebabinho wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:17 pm
Did they get any complaints around the opening music for cannon fodder on the Amiga?
Stoo: I don't ever recall any complaints, having said that Jon Hare is probably more qualified to answer this question than me.
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ely
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Re: Questions for Stoo Cambridge

Post by ely » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:46 pm

merman wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 5:21 pm
So, the interview lasted 90 minutes and the transcript is 13,000 words... now to cram as much of the interesting stuff into the article...
Looking forward to it, better to have too much that too little :)

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