TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Disney Infinity Fans exclusive interviews

TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby PirateSteven » Wed May 21, 2014 1:13 am

Another Disney Infinity Fans forum member has made the leap from dream to reality, as Tyler Cole (TyForce) will be starting his new career at Avalanche with the Disney Infinity Toy Box team. Tyler has accepted a position as an Associate Level Designer, Community.

"I've been playing video games ever since I can remember, and never have I been more involved with a game as I have Disney Infinity. And it's completely because of huge support groups like the Disney Infinity Fans forum where we can share our talents, ideas, and knowledge with each other to help one another out and make friends with common interests. It's completely brilliant!"

On behalf of all of the curious Disney Infinity Fans, we asked our friend TyForce some questions. Good luck Tyler!

What is your real name? Country?

Tyler Cole (Utah, United States)

What is the origin story of your Toy Box submission username?

I’m a fan of Zelda, and my name is Tyler. It seemed fitting. Ha!

What made you decide to buy Disney Infinity?

I’m a big Disney fan, and I wanted those figures. Then after looking more into the game and seeing I could create my own worlds, I was in.

What is your favorite play set and why?

The Lone Ranger was a blast for me. A friend and I played through the whole thing while we were participating in an event called Extra Life (play games for 24 hours, raise money for a children’s hospital). Playing through that co-op was so much fun! It was also my first time playing Disney Infinity. The missions were varied and a lot of fun. Plus it had pretty cool unlockables as well.

Who is your favorite Disney Infinity character and why?

Vanellope. I would have chosen Ralph because of his 8-bit bombs, but Vanellope has the edge over him in speed. Her bombs take down enemies fast. Her dodge can be chained over and over, which allows her to travel with good speed. Her glitch attack knocks things a good ways too, and it pixelates enemies. I think is an awesome effect! I also really enjoy her comments.

Which character would you like to see included that hasn't already been and why?

So many classic characters need to be in this game. If I were to choose one… Goofy. And we would be able to do “The Perfect Cast”!

What is your favorite power disc and why?

Definitely the Disneyland Tram!! Being able to tow people causes so much fun in the Toy Box. Then, of course, flinging them off the edge of the world.

When you hear of a new challenge, what steps do you take to make your idea for a Toy Box a reality?

I think a lot at first, until I feel I have a really good idea. Sometimes the good idea is for the complete Toy Box. Other times, it is just a good idea of something to have in the Toy Box. From there, I will begin building from the beginning of the level. Even if my “good idea” thing is not until later in the level, I will still start from the beginning. And I am usually creative enough for things to just start falling into place as I go.

How long did each of your featured Toy Boxes take to build?

“Touch the Light” was a little over 9 hours. “Happy Places” was about 13 and a half hours. Both of them would not have taken so long. I swear the WiiU version has some major issues. Replayers and I have a love-hate relationship.

Your Touch the Light toy box was selected as a featured toy box in the Monstrous Pranks Challenge. Please give us some Inside the Toy Box details on your Touch the Light toy box.

I did not want to create a level where you were constantly getting sent back, and it was just obnoxious to get through. I don’t care for those kinds of levels. I also don’t like mazes. But I still wanted to prank the player.

The concept of trying to attain something right in front of you the whole time, but couldn't really, stood out to me. Hence the description saying, “Touch the light. Simple enough, right?” So even though, the player dies right from the beginning, then they fall down a trap just before getting to the light right after, the player still felt like they were progressing. I also felt they would think it to be humorous.

Then I had an idea to prank the player in another way. I filled the room with objects that normally slap you around. The room was full of them, and you could not avoid them. BUT!!! They were all just plain old items that do not do that. So the player would enter with caution, and nothing would ever happen. Then that’s where I really get them. I discovered a trick that by laying down a floor block, it would hide those sewer springs. So once the player made it past all those expected pranks and thought they were in the clear they get hit by something that they don’t even see. I felt it to be rather brilliant.

The spring room was something I felt I needed to hint at. I did not want the player running around forever then just giving up. That’s why I can’t stand mazes. They are just not fun. I also thought kids would really enjoy just bouncing around that room. They dig that sort of humor.

Then, the hallway that doesn't end. I just thought this was fun. Although you notice that the second to last time, the hallway stretches, there is no light. Chalk that one up to replayers not doing what they are told. There should have been a light there.

The finale: I really did want the player to touch the light. I wanted it to actually be attainable after all I put them through. The player had no idea why they were trying to touch the light this whole time, and I felt that should be a prank in and of itself. I got them to do this. I pranked them. My initial idea was once the light was touched the camera would zoom out and it would show the ground disappearing out from beneath the player and them falling into a giant toilet. Ha! That was my original idea. But I didn't know how well that would go over. My final decision was the “Rick Roll”. I’m only assuming the guys at Disney got it, because I know this did not connect with everyone. That was a chance I was willing to take. I was hoping to have more lyrics in there, but alas, I ran out of space. I’m just glad I was able to finish 2 complete lines of lyrics instead of filling up the meter while only half was through a line.

That about sums up the behind the scenes for that Toy Box. Thanks for listening!

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What do you consider to be your specialty when building Toy Boxes?

Creating something within my Toy Box (or sometimes multiple things) that people will see and say, “Ok, that is pretty creative.” Or, “Brilliant!”. I also try to have the player go through the level, the way I want them to. Call me a control freak!

What is your favorite Toy Box that you have built?

I created a Tron level, but it did not make it in the top 5. It is called “Return of the MCP”. The ending of the game has a legit boss fight against the MCP from the original Tron. You are flying a Recognizer blasting away and that giant hideous MCP face (a la Star Fox), while its turrets are blasting away at you. You have to hit the thing 200 times. It is awesome!

Your Happy Places toy box was selected as a featured toy box in the Princess Challenge. Please give us some Inside the Toy Box details on your Happy Places toy box.

I wanted it to be princess themed, and not an excuse to create a level based on the movie that a princess is from. And then I wanted it to star my 3 favorite princesses. Once I knew it would include Ariel, Rapunzel, and Vanellope, I had to figure out how to tie them all together. Then it came to me. They all have their sort of safe havens. From then, I knew I was going to have that Mr. Incredible statue in Ariel’s cave. Ha!

I had to start with Ariel, due to the Nemo sky disc. Then I had the idea of using fans to allude to swimming under water. That portion of the level was simple enough.

I wanted the transition from one location to the next to be cool. So, you are under water then you fly upward and now you are on solid ground under a night sky. I loved that!

Vanellope's section had to be longer, because I had to create several triggers to toggle through the sky changer to get the sky to where I wanted it. Here’s where I saw things not working when I watched online videos of people playing through the level. It worked just fine for me at home, and it was mind blowing! Once you ride form the arcade to Fix It Felix Jr., the level should look just like you are in the game, with the Fix It Felix Jr. Skydome. Once you pick up Vanellope, you travel to the Game Central Station, which I had to shrink down in the end, because I was running out of space. There were a triggers in there to change the sky as well. Then the part I was most excited for… Vanellope’s happy place. The falling Mentos in the Diet Cola Mountain, was something I was so excited for the player to see. I wanted to use golf balls, but they were too small, so baseballs it was. I really hope the player enjoyed that part of the level.

Then on to Rapunzel. This is another place where the sky changer was pretty much out of whack on the videos I saw, but worked fine at home. The sky should have been a serene night sky, with magical music playing. Perfect for that last scene with the castle and fireworks. Instead, the videos I saw online there was a raging tornado running amuck. What kind of happy place is that?! Anyway, that about sums up that level. I hope everyone enjoyed it.

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What is your favorite Toy Box that someone else has built?

I would say my top 3 are Olympus Coliseum, Indiana Jones, and Soarin. All for different reasons. Olympus Coliseum is just a great battle Toy Box, with a good challenge. Indiana Jones was an amazing attempt to recreate the ride with the limitations the game sets. Soarin is just so simple. And the golf ball! The golf ball is one of those things that I’d like to think the creator thought, People are going to really enjoy this touch.”

What are some of your classic Toy Boxes that have not been a featured top 5 Toy Box?

I already mention my Tron level.

Also my Muppetvision 3D level. It is a level with several waves of enemies that take place in the Muppetvision 3D theater. You have to rescue Statler and Waldorf, and return them to their balcony seats. With each new wave of enemies the screen changes (sky changer). It’s gets pretty crazy toward the end, but once you clear the last wave, and make it safe for the Muppets to return, Animal, Miss Piggy, and Kermit come parachuting into the theater for the end.

I’ve also made a TMNT Arcade game inspired level. Pretty cool!

I’ve also created a level that plays out like a MOMA, sort of like League of Legends. It definitely works best with 4 players. I just need to get 4 players together. Hit me up on the WiiU!

What is your dream Toy Box challenge?

Though there are many untapped Disney franchises out there that I would love to see levels for, I think I would rather just have a challenge for people to create something original. That may be difficult with the limited description text box. But it could have some theme to it, like… use the top down camera the whole time, or the side camera the whole time. I don’t know, just something off the wall.

Your Unbuildinator toy box was selected as a featured toy box in the Phineas and Ferb Challenge. Please give us some Inside the Toy Box details on your Unbuildinator toy box.

My idea was to play through a typical episode of Phineas and Ferb, but focused on the roll of Agent P (Perry). Dr. D's "inators" are always effecting Phineas and Ferb throughout their adventures, without them knowing about it. So, I set it up as if they were trying to build something, but Dr. D's "inator" is preventing them from doing so. Agent P always finds a secret entrance to the agency, where he receives intel from Major Monogram shown on a large screen. I wanted to recreate these things within the level. So I made a puzzle of finding the secret entrance. I used the magic of Disney (forced perspective trick) to recreate the large screen with Major Monogram displayed within. And whenever Perry enters Dr. D's laboratory, he is immediately trapped. I knew that had to happen within the level as well. And lastly, I wanted some good humor in the end. Punting Dr. D through the uprights was my shout out to the end of every episode... CURSE YOU PERRY THE PLATYPUS!!! The crowd goes wild! Ha!

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Share a story of adversity from when you were building one of your Toy Boxes that you had to overcome.

Oh my goodness. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. REPLAYERS can be absolutely awful! I have had to build and rebuild, then rebuild again, because of replayers leaving phantom boxes in the level, or not deleting everything, or not playing back everything.

For the Phineas and Ferb challenge...I wanted something to replay then clear over and over, but I did not want that time delayer to keep showing up over and over at the top of the screen. So I created some triggers that would trigger the replayer to playback, and also trigger a falling item generator to drop a ball through an area trigger. Once that ball fell through the area, it would clear the replayer, as well as trigger another falling item generator to drop another ball through another area trigger. Once that ball hit is area trigger it would clear the replayer, as well as trigger the first falling item generator to spawn another ball… creating an infinite cycle. It got the job done.

Share a funny story from when you were building one of your Toy Boxes.

I was actually just goofing one of my Arena Toy Boxes with a friend, but he was playing as Dash, and had turned himself into that crow from the Lone Ranger set. He was flying around, and I’m sure exactly what happened but I had laid down a power disc and he was changing out of the grow, and it glitched, causing him to still look like the crow. He still controlled his character, but the crow was just stiff, no flapping wings. So he could carry other items, and ride animals, drive cars. He could even carry me as this stiff bird. So, we took some photos, because it was awesome! He would even use Dash’s dash attack and there would be these red blurs coming from behind him, even though he just looked like a crow. Good times.

Do you have any advice for aspiring Toy Box Artists?

I guess just look for ways to be creative with the limitations the game gives you. And even though you may not be able to represent something you want to perfection, it’s ok. When people see what you've done with those limitations, you will impress them.

Please describe the feeling of getting the call from Avalanche to be hired to work on the Disney Infinity Team.

Honestly, it was so unreal. The initial call from them asking to have a phone interview was just so thrilling. I mean, we are talking about a literal dream come true, here. I applied, not thinking anything would come of it. Then I had a phone interview, then an actual interview, then an offer to work for them in a matter of a week! Totally insane! Especially when they kept telling me it would take a couple weeks for them to get back with me. It all happened so fast. I found humor in their question when they asked if I would accept their offer... as if that was even a question. if I were not a married man, this would be the happiest moment of my life! I feel really fortunate, and I am going to do all I can to rock the socks off any player who plays a game created by Avalanche! Lastly, I just want to thank them for seeing me as an asset to the company. Thank you Disney. Thank you Avalanche.

Any advice for gamers that dream to work for a video game developing company?

When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you

If your heart is in your dream
No request is too extreme
When you wish upon a star
As dreamers do

Fate is kind
She brings to those who love
The sweet fulfillment of
Their secret longing

Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true

Fate is kind
She brings to those who love
The sweet fulfillment of
Their secret longing

Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true

Except for the star thing, but just be diligent. I myself can not believe this is happening!
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby Musicboy74 » Wed May 21, 2014 1:25 am

Awesome! Great to see more fans invited to join Avalanche.
Want to join the Disney Infinity Fans Steam group? Click the globe icon!
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby Blues » Wed May 21, 2014 1:45 am

That was *sniff* the best advice I've ever received...

Anyway, congrats! You'll do amazingly! I hope Touch the Light is still up for download...
Look at ye! Glowing like a solar fire. Yer gonna rattle the stars, Jimbo.
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby Randall Boggs » Wed May 21, 2014 2:03 am

I loved the ending of Touch the Light. :lol:
SSB Mewtwo Launch Party!
Click the globe icon to join!
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby crazybynick » Wed May 21, 2014 2:15 am

Congrats! Welcome to the team, looking forward to working together.
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby Elmo STM » Wed May 21, 2014 2:37 am

Awesome news. Will read tomorrow, bed time here well done.
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby tangled&tron » Wed May 21, 2014 10:45 am

That advice sounds awfully familiar somehow... you got it from somewhere didn't you? Oh I know... it's from the Art of War by Sun Tzu isn't it? =D
 
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby SandyClaws » Wed May 21, 2014 3:35 pm

Congrats TyForce, glad to see another well deserved member joining the big leagues!
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Re: TyForce, Disney Infinity Toy Box Artist

Postby Elmo STM » Wed May 21, 2014 10:46 pm

Great interview too
 
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