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  1. #1

    Default Creator Spotlight 2 - Kiminski


    Kiminski
    A Quiet Genius
    Interview conducted by MrsSpookyBuz

    Kiminski is a creator with a rare skill which allows her to combine wonderful artistry and creativity with some fiendish game play. Add to this her enviable consistency for producing both popular and acclaimed levels, and you have a creator who is truly the complete package. Load up any of her levels, and you can be assured a treat is in store. Who is this wonderwoman? Let's find out!

    --------------------------


    Kiminski's beautiful and inspired interpretation of
    Sonic the Hedgehog's "Green Hill Zone"



    The Low-Down


    What video games did you enjoy playing before LBP was released?
    I’ve been a total MMO fiend lately, spent a good 4 years in Final Fantasy XI and for the last 2 years I've been doing my bit for Middle Earth in Lord of the Rings Online, with a bit of Warhammer thrown into the mix for good measure! On the odd occasion I could tear myself away, I’ve been enjoying a bit of Rainbow Six Vegas, Fallout 3, Fable 2 and Tomb Raider Underworld.

    I've also had a reoccurring addiction to the MotoGP series since it first came out on the original Xbox, so '07' on the 360 got a thorough dusting off recently too!


    What was the first full level you ever built? And what was it like?
    Lol - My first level was a fairground level called 'Come to the Fair!'. I didn't have much in the way of materials when I made it, so it's pretty basic. I was an Eager Beaver as far a create mode was concerned!

    To be quite honest, if I wasn't constantly fighting for space on My Moon, I'd have deleted it from the long suffering community ages ago! *shudders*


    What levels have you published to date?
    Lara Cloth: Tomb Raider - The Great Pyramid
    Lara Cloth: Tomb Raider - The Eye of the Gods
    Lara Cloth: Tomb Raider – Helgardh (Very nearly!)
    Invasion Earth: Eve of Destruction
    Invasion Earth II: The Mothership
    Quiet Ocean
    Secret Garden
    Sonic the Hedgehog - Greenhill Zone
    XMB Icon Studio
    Come to the Fair!

    I also published a slightly altered version of The Great Pyramid minus Ms Croft, for entry into the Around the World in 80 Sackboys competition. It's since been deleted due to the similarities to the original, but not before winning me a crown.

    Which of these is your own favourite? And why?
    Definitely The Great Pyramid. It has the best tune! It was also my first 'real' level, so I was totally bursting with ideas and enthusiasm. Wish that was still the case!

    Are there any other creators who inspire you?
    There are tons! Most of them are on LBPC too! Lol! I won't write a huge list for fear of gushing or even worse, missing anybody out! But if I had to name one, it would have to be CandyK. Starcruiser is the ultimate green eyed monster level as far as I'm concerned; I've yet to see any other level that firstly, looks that good but secondly, has the tremendous ability of making me feel so absolutely horrible about my own creations. Visually, it’s utterly amazing and it's definitely given me copious amounts of motivation to become a better creator.

    What’s the worst thing that’s happened while creating?
    Just a few weeks ago actually, having spent about 4 hours working on a new project, I decided to dust the front of the PS3 and proceeded to eject the disc. Nice!

    What’s your pet hate in LBP?
    The 160 hour bug without a doubt – Go******** it MM, sort it out! It’s horrendous!

    I'm sure some of you have already seen me posting my woes on here, but for the record; my current creation has been an absolute nightmare to complete! I've been working on it since the beginning of May and have now had the bug hit me three times. It's had me in floods of tears on numerous occasions and just about ready to quit. If it hadn’t been for the beta, I wouldn’t be here now.

    For those of you that don't already know, (as far as I understand it) there's a timer that ticks away in create mode enabling your bolts, winches and pistons to keep good time. Trouble is the longer the timer is running, the less precise your bolts, winches and pistons become. I'm sure most of you have already experienced them failing to work at a speed of 0.1? 0.2 even? Give it a few more hours and they'll stop running at 0.5. A little after that and every winch, bolt and piston in your level will become useless and either stop working completely or only move with an intense judder.

    There's absolutely nothing you can do at this stage, other than capture parts of your level and move it bit by bit to a brand new level space. The only way to avoid it in the first place is by creating in paused mode, as this will pause the timer too, but obviously that's not always possible and to be honest shouldn't really be the case, so please.. get reporting your dodgy winches guys!


    If you worked for Media Molecule, what tool/object/material would you have liked to see developed?
    Ooh! Definitely an image uploader with transparency support! Phwoar! A nice textured grass material wouldn’t go amiss either.

    Any tips for new creators?
    Not really a tip, but probably the most important thing for anyone to remember is that it’s far easier to criticise someone’s work than it is to create a masterpiece.



    One of many glorious statues that pepper
    Kiminski's "Tomb Raider" series

    Digging Deeper

    Your Sonic the Hedgehog level, and your Tomb Raider levels, are regarded by many players as some of the best ‘tribute levels’ on LBP. How conscious were you in trying to make them capture the essence of the original games?
    To be honest, not really at all as far as Tomb Raider was concerned. I just really wanted to build in Tomb Raider-esque locations. Wish I'd called them something else now really. Greenhill Zone was a bit different though. It was more of an experiment than anything. I'd been having a bit of a retro moment on the PSP and thought it might be fun to build an exact replica in LBP. So extremely conscious for that one, even had the PSP on the go at the same time for reference.

    The creativity and atmosphere in your levels borders on sublime – how important is ‘feel’ when you’re creating?
    Does it? Cor thanks! I do spend a stupidly long time adjusting light bulbs and sound effects... So yeah, extremely important. Probably second only to artwork, it's the making or breaking of a level in my opinion. It's no good spending ages tweaking the game play of a survival horror only to pick 'My Patch' as the background track. I usually choose the music before anything else and build with it playing, really helps me get the feel of the level. Having said that, it really drives me mad at times too!

    Do you have any particular bad habits when you’re creating?
    Ignoring my other half and letting my tea go cold.

    In the ‘male dominated’ arena of video games, LBP attracts quite a few female creators and players such as yourself. What makes LBP so accessible for ALL players?
    The fact that boys can build guns and girls can build ironing boards? It can be whatever you want it to be, I suppose.

    I actually ran through some of my levels with my Mum a few months back and even she was totally loving it. I was gob-smacked to say the least. She's never shown the slightest bit of interest in my gaming habits in the past, other than a roll of the eyes and a moan about how I need to get outside more. When I asked her about her new found enthusiasm for LBP, she said she liked it because it’s creative and requires the use if your brain unlike other games, so I guess there’s another answer.


    There’s a certain mystique and elegance about certain levels you’ve created. How do you consistently retain the "Kiminskian Effect"?
    Lol, I have no idea what that is, but I like it! I think I’ve just found my style really. It’s no use attempting to imitate someone else’s work; you need to create what comes naturally and feel comfortable with and take it from there.

    What can we expect from Kiminski in the future?
    No doubt the clothy raider will see a few more adventures yet, but I wouldn’t mind revisiting some of my earlier levels and giving them a bit of an overhaul. Some of the artwork is astonishingly bad looking back. I’m also quite keen to try something completely new. I did build a stupid great big galleon in the beta, which I’m actually really proud of, so I’ll maybe try and pop that into a level somewhere along the line too - me hearties!

    And finally, how many hours do you reckon you’ve spent in Create mode?
    Hmm? *Twitch*

    --------------------


    Stunning scenery in Kiminski's fabulous "Secret Garden"

    Our Conclusions

    I played every one of Kiminski’s levels again after this interview. They all felt like old friends who I’d missed. Stunning set pieces and scenery, awash with light and colour and pure magic. Take her Secret Garden level as an example (though you could choose ANY!) – it’s awe-inspiring. You’ll be lucky to find a more beautiful and charming level on LBP. Her craft and design skills are such that you would be forgiven for thinking you were in a fantastical far away place. But taking us to other places is exactly what this genius creator does. I urge you to go and sample some of her work - you'll quickly agree.
    Last edited by ConfusedCartman; 10-24-2009 at 04:53 AM.


  2. #2

    Default first comment

    first comment!!!(do i get a prize?)
    Well look what we have here... nostalgia is a powerful drug. - Theswweet

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by theswweet View Post
    first comment!!!(do i get a prize?)
    Oh my god...

    Anyway, Great interview! I've played those Tomb Raider levels and they were superb!

    Great job again to MrsSpookyBuz!



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  4. #4

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    Thank you Mrs. SpookyBuz for another great interview, and double thanks for choosing to interview Kiminski. I have LOVED her work since I played The Quiet Ocean, which was my first experience with her genius. I'm still in awe of that beautiful level. The sea turtle has to be one of my favorite creations in any level. She has definately been one of my biggest inspirations as a creator.
    Live "life near the bone, where it's sweetest." H.D. Thoreau

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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by iGotFancyPants View Post
    Oh my god...

    Anyway, Great interview! I've played those Tomb Raider levels and they were superb!

    Great job again to MrsSpookyBuz!
    sheesh fancy...its called...a joke!!!...sry...
    Well look what we have here... nostalgia is a powerful drug. - Theswweet

  6. #6

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    Congratulations for the interview, Kiminski.
    Who'll be interviewed next? I hope it's me. Or comphermc. He make good levels.
    Remember me? Probably not. Remember drakon136? That used to be me.


  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by theswweet View Post
    sheesh fancy...its called...a joke!!!...sry...
    I understand jokes, but you could have put in SOME feedback. It takes effort to do these things and they shouldn't just get JOKES



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  8. #8
    Sackinima :) moleynator's Avatar
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    Nice interview! I found it very interesting.


  9. #9

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    Shame on me would you say but I really didn't knew about that creator. I think a played one of the Tomb Raiders but that's it. I absolutely need to go see that green hills zone level!!

    .


  10. #10
    Sackinima :) moleynator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RangerZero View Post
    Shame on me would you say but I really didn't knew about that creator. I think a played one of the Tomb Raiders but that's it. I absolutely need to go see that green hills zone level!!

    .
    I had also never heard of her, but that is what makes this forum so good. We don't only focus on the best known creators (Although I think they are well known, just not to us noobs ), but also the lesser known creators that are just as good.


  11. #11
    Sack Mama :) BabyDoll1970's Avatar
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    Thanks so much - highly informative. When I got to what I considered was a pretty complete package on my own Tomb Raider level I ventured online to see what other people had done (as I didn't want to it to influence me prior to creating) and there was a lot of ordinary stuff, but then I played Kiminski's and found them to be, as you said, sublime! I thought "crap" and didn't even bother going back to tweak mine again. LOL!

    Apart from the amazing atmospheres in general, I was just blown away by how MUCH she fitted into each level - without sacrificing any detail (as it appeared to me, anyway - I'm sure she deleted tons of things due to thermo issues). My levels aren't half as long before my thermo is maxed out. It was amazing to me. I'd pay her for a lesson!

    Thanks MrsSB and thanks to Kiminski as well : )

    Edit - Oh, and and extra thanks for exposing that timer bug! I had no idea it existed but it explains my misfiring pistons exactly!
    Last edited by BabyDoll1970; 10-24-2009 at 03:59 AM.


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  12. #12
    Back, sorta chezhead's Avatar
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    I like it! I love these levels and I like these interviews. CONTINUE, PLEASE!

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  13. #13
    Still dead. Burnvictim42's Avatar
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    Thanks to both of the fabulous ladies involved in this interview for giving us a fun and informative insight into these wonderful creations

    Loving these creator spotlights, awesome idea CC


  14. #14

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    Very interesting read! I knew nothing about Kaminski, but have played her levels. Its fantastic learning some of this stuff!
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  15. #15
    Grand Den Mod-er of LBPC Morgana25's Avatar
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    Great job MrsSpookyBuz. I've always liked her levels and it's great to see some recognition for her.


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  16. #16
    Tarsier Level Designer comphermc's Avatar
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    Well, I'm officially a terrible person. I don't think I've played a single Kiminski level... please don't shoot! I can fix this...

    *skips off to PS3



    Edit: Okay - I played 3 of them. Kiminski gets a creator heart. I need to play the rest now!
    Last edited by comphermc; 10-24-2009 at 04:26 AM.
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  17. #17

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    I dont think I have played these levels before...but after seeing this, I am going to start playing them all. Great interview!


  18. #18
    LBPCentral Creator Spotlight CrewUniverseUnderConstruction jwwphotos's Avatar
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    Fantastic interview! Congrats Kiminski! Well deserved spotlight!!

    Awesome work MrsSpookyBuz! Another great totally pro interview!
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    Good one. More levels for the queue...

    Seriously, with this and the Level Spotlight running back-to-back, one should never get bored out there in LBP!


  20. #20

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    Nice one! I've played the Green Hill Zone level and it was an excellent interpretation of the original. Congrats and keep up the good work. =)
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