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What You Didn't Know About DJ Hero

by Andrew Reiner on Nov 24, 2009 at 06:30 AM

Game development often lasts for years. In that stretch of time, studios have their fair share of ups and downs. From humorous game bugs to stress-relieving antics, Game Informer peers behind the curtain of game development. In this entry of Tidbits, developer FreeStyle Games shares secrets behind the development of DJ Hero.

  • One of the remixer's girlfriends is featured on the sample stream of the Rihanna “Disturbia” vs. Kid Sister “Control” mix.  (“That’s good!”)
  • The ‘vinyl figure’ on the shelf in the tutorial level is actually the first ever version of The Jugglernort.
  • We went through two subwoofers mixing the game..... whoops, “11” was clearly too high.
  • The toilet flushing sound in the Dizzee Rascal “Fix Up, Look Sharp” vs. Justice “Genesis” mix (Flushing MCs down the loo...) isn’t from a sample library, it’s a bespoke recording of Surya’s toilet.
  • There are over 150 cameras in each environment.
  • One of the earlier versions of the DJ Hero turntable controller that we had in the office was nicknamed “The bride of Frankenstein,” as it consisted of various parts stuck on with glue and tape. It was made in the garage of the creative director on a cold windy day.
  • Great lost items from DJ Hero venue development include a giant neon cat, an aircraft carrier, the hip hop duck, the Afro Cow, the ‘naked’ mansion dancer, the creepy guy from the Krunk House, the Mariachi band, the Stormtrooper-like helmet, Candy Nova’s underwear, the building demolition scene and the rocket launch from Logic...
  • The record labels have names of the environment and animation development team on them.
  • A company wide snowball fight was arranged to sort out dev team disputes at Christmas. We lost five good men.
  • FreeStyle Games cultivates its own chilies in house and a chili tasting session every Wednesday to increase the team's level of tolerance.
  • 90 bacon and sausage sandwiches were bought to reanimate the team after a heavy Christmas night party.
  • The lunchtime FreeStyle runners ran 1,248 miles over the dev cycle since we joined Activision (averaging four runners running twice per week).
  • The record for the highest note streak within the company is 919 on Common - “Universal Mind Control (U.M.C.)” vs. Masta Ace - “Jeep A** Gutter (Aaron LaCrate & Debonair Samir RMX)” (Produced and mixed by The Scratch Perverts).
  • FreeStyle babies totaled 15 (2 sets of twins).
  • Five marriages happened.
  • We spent £6,000 on Friday night beer tabs to celebrate the weeks in crunch.
  • FreeStyle consumed 52,000 tea bags, 4,500 cans on Red Bull (Thanks, John!!!), 5,600 cans of sugar free Red Bull – you see, we are healthy. ;)


For other Tidbits entries, click the desired game name: LEGO Indiana Jones 2, Prototype, Fallout 3, Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2, Ghostbusters, Star Wars The Clone Wars: Republic Heroes, Overlord II, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Red Faction: Guerrilla, Scribblenauts