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Talking Snot With Boogerman's Co-Creator

Fans of the 16-bit era are most likely familiar with Boogerman: A Pick And Flick Adventure, the potty humor-heavy platformer from Interplay. It came out for the Genesis 20 ago, and its original creators are hoping to revive the disgusting superhero via a new Kickstarter campaign. To learn more about what the team is planning if the crowdfunder reaches its goal, we spoke to designer Chris Tremmel.

The worlds that are listed on the Kickstarter are the same as from the original game. Will these be similar stages in terms of level design, or is it more of an overall setting that you're recreating?

The only thing the levels will share is the setting. One thing we definitely did not want to do was a high-res version of the original. When I said “It’s not an HD remake,” that’s really what I meant. As for level design, they will be 100-percent new. I love the original dearly, but sometimes I look back at the levels I designed and think “What the hell was I thinking?” I was new.

The original Boogerman is typically remembered more for its scatological humor than for its gameplay. Do you anticipate that this revival will be a smoother platforming experience?

Not sure what you are trying to say, but yes! For sure. Boogerman was actually my very first game, and I never had one lesson. In all seriousness, the industry was pretty young in 1993. Mike [Stragey, co-creator of Boogerman] had just promoted me out of test. We thought we knew what we were doing but we were just beginning an incredibly long process of learning about game design, programming, artwork, production, etc. We’ve been really fortunate to have careers spanning 20+ years since then and while we are still learning every day, we definitely have a much better idea of what is involved in crafting a fun experience gameplay wise...I think. 

One of the bullet points on the Kickstarter page touts a new collectible system. What will Boogerman be collecting?

Well, we are definitely bringing the plungers back! In addition to the plungers, we plan to bring back the milk bottle and the pepper. The largest addition collectible-wise is probably the Snotimals. The Snotimals are innocent, cute, disgusting little mucous creatures. Unfortunately, they are being exploited by Booger Meister for mining and refinery purposes. Exactly what are they mining and refining? We’re snot saying yet.

Looking at the concept art for the Fart-copter, I think I have a decent idea of what powers it. That said, can I get an official word on what produces the energy for this particular aircraft?

This is a great question. It’s actually a pretty fascinating invention, so let me break it down for you. It is powered by a process called chemical looping. With chemical looping, a solid, oxygen-laden material – called an “oxygen carrier” – is put in contact with natural gas. The oxygen atoms in the oxygen carrier interact with the natural gas, causing combustion that produces energy. Old fashioned oxygen carriers were made from a composite of inert ceramic material and metal oxides. However, Professor Stinkbaum developed a new type of oxygen carrier that include a “mixed ionic-electronic conductor,” which effectively shuttles oxygen atoms into the natural gas very efficiently – making the chemical-looping combustion process as much as 70 times faster. So in a nutshell, yes. It’s fart powered.

Is the Fart-copter functional as a toilet, or is it purely for flying purposes?

No, this is a high-tech piece of equipment. This isn’t a joke. That being said, he could probably use it in a pinch...but it’s not recommended.

Does this adventure fall more on the pick or flick end of the spectrum?

This adventure will definitely reach both ends of the spectrum. No doubt. 

How did Snotty Ragsdale make his millions?

Snotty is actually the sole heir to “Ragsdale & Ragsdale Biologics.” R&R was at one time the world market leader in medical research and home health-care items like tissues, nasal spray, antacids, etc. The company has been trending downward since the tragic loss of Snotty Sr. and Mrs. Ragsdale. 

So is Snotty Ragsdale's alter ego kind of a Batman thing? Are boogers something he's super grossed out by, and that's why he created Boogerman?

Snotty never chose to be Boogerman. Boogerman chose Snotty. With great mucous discharge comes great responsibility, or so they say. Snotty is battling a few personal demons in regards to the relationship with his parents and ultimately blames himself for their demise. Peering through the mask of Boogerman, Snotty is simply trying to make the world a better place. He will continue this struggle until he achieves true inner peace.

Did you consider Oculus Rift support?

Not at this point, although with a smell-o-vision add-on we would definitely be on board day one.

How many farts will be recorded for this game? Do you guys have the grossest foley artist in the business? Do you throw away the microphones when you're done? 

We are looking into a system that takes a library of roughly 10-15 different samples and procedurally combines them to create an infinite amount of variety. You might be surprised at how many quality takes you can get in a single day. It’s far lower than I thought, simply due to the working conditions it creates. As for the microphones, no we don’t throw them away, they are rentals.

I noticed a couple of times on the Kickstarter page, it says "snot" instead of "not." Is that a typo?

Hmm...snot sure what you are talking about here.

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