Senses Fail’s Buddy Nielsen Discusses the Band’s New GameChanger Game
Senses Fail were recently announced as one of the acts who will be getting their own game as part of GameChanger’s new series. For their action-packed version, Senses Fail turn up as skateboarding versions of themselves, allowing players to collect points through various levels of big air awesomeness while pulling off all kinds of skateboarding tricks along the way.
‘Senses Fail: Grind Core’ arrives tomorrow (Aug. 22) and Noisecreep recently spoke with frontman Buddy Nielsen about the band’s participation in creating the game, their first impressions of GameChanger’s final product and his hopes for what ‘Senses Fail: Grind Core’ can achieve. Check out our interview with Senses Fail’s Buddy Nielsen below:
Kind of cool you’ve got this new GameChanger game going on.
Yeah it’s pretty cool, It’s different. Let’s see how it turns out. The game is cool, we’ll see if the game goes well.
Could you tell me about how you got involved in the GameChanger world? Did they approach you or did you reach out to them?
They approached us, actually. I’ve known the guy, John D, who has been a promoter in the tri-state area for years. He’s responsible for doing Skate and Surf and Bamboozle and this was sort of his new venture. He approached us about a band that I managed and getting them involved and that sort of fell through so we said, ‘Hey Senses Fail would like to do it,’ and we sort of went from there.
How much input did you have on the game?
A lot. I mean the concept, the mechanics and basic idea were ours. They did all the art. They came up and they built the game. They did most of the work but it wasn’t like just, ‘Hey make something.’ We gave them a pretty concrete idea of what we were looking for and what we thought would be cool.
I love the demo they gave me to check out. It reminds me of the old school video games. Were you in that mindset as well?
Yeah, I wanted to make a game that I would hope people would buy regardless if they knew the band or not just because it was a good game. That was sort of my goal; I really didn’t want to do something that was centric to the band. I wanted the band to be secondary. I was more interested in making a game that was cool.
The mechanics of the game are good. I’ve played some of the other ones and I think this one has the smoothest, best [game play]. That’s all I really cared about. I cared about the game play more than how can we link the band in with the game. To me it was more like, what can we do to make it playable?
Can you tell me about your first experience playing it? Is what we now have in hand, is that the first option of what you went through?
No, there were a couple of fills with it. I wanted to make sure … I mean the camera was the main thing, like in any game like this. The camera and how it zooms and uh, sort of is instructed to follow you is very important especially in this game to give it depth and feel. All the mechanics were pretty much the same. I kept wanting to make changes to the camera to make sure that people didn’t get lost when they were flying in the air because that was something that kept happening to me. But yeah, it was pretty close to what they originally delivered. They know what they’re doing and they did a very good job.
I thought it was cool too, looking at the likenesses’ of each of the band members. Are you digging your likeness?
(Laughs) Yeah it’s pretty funny to play a video game and be yourself.
Which one do you think has the best one?
I’d probably say Dan [Trapp].
I can see that. Can you give me a description of the game? What are some of the things we’ll find in the various levels? What is the game play like?
Basically It’s a touch screen game that’s centered around gravity. That’s the whole idea; you’re using your gravity and momentum to escape the level to make it to the next level by the end of the night or your momentum falls out. You basically have to keep up momentum while doing tricks to gain points. It’s pretty cool. We haven’t planed all the levels out yet. We’re still figuring all that as well.
We have a couple of them. That’s the thing with these games, you can add to them. We can update them. We put out the initial game and we see what works and what doesn’t. Then we make changes and add to them and then it’s like a new version of it. It’s pretty cool because we don’t have to finalize anything. We finalize a few levels, check it out and see what people like and what they don’t like and if anything is working or if it’s not we can make changes.
These days there are so many different ways to go about promoting your band. To me this is a cool option to have.
Yeah well this game is not really about marketing the band at this point. For our band I’m just most interested in enjoying it and this is just a cool way to enjoy being in the band rather than marketing. I’m not really looking at it from that standpoint. We’ve been doing this for a long time, for me it’s not really about that anymore.
Someone said it a long time ago that it’s always a lot more fun when you’re not trying to be the biggest band in the world. We’re definitely at that point where Senses Fail is no longer even remotely trying to be the biggest band in the world. I think we’ve realized the limitations of what we are, where we are and we just have fun with it.
When we have the opportunity to do something like this, it’s cool. It’s more of a cool thing to enjoy about being in a band rather than using it as a marketing tool. Yeah, I’m sure it will open things. The whole point is to open people up to the band in a way that we weren’t able to before. That’s an opportunity we have and I think that’s important. I think both as a standpoint for bands now a days you really have to try to do everything, this is just another cool opportunity and a cool way to do something that isn’t just making Facebook posts.
Exactly. You mentioned before the opportunity to continually add to the game and there are things on here where people can get band wallpapers and other items. Do you see continually adding music as well?
It depends on how well it does. It really depends on what people decide … If the game takes off for whatever freak reason, sometimes it just happened with these things. Sometimes people make a game and it just does well, it’s just a good game regardless of what it’s about. People pay attention to it and play it. I think that would be best case scenario in a fantasy world, we put out the game look back in six months and it’s Candy Crush or whatever.
People just like it or get addicted to it. People are playing it and don’t even know the band. Then you really have power then and you’re like, “Wow, we can use this thing to premiere songs or do some Senses music. That is sort of what this is for and I think it will work. It’s not going to work for everyone but it will work for someone and I think it will be cool when it does.
Our thanks to Senses Fail’s Buddy Nielsen for the interview. For more information on the ‘Senses Fail: Grind Core’ game check here and to see all of GameChanger’s music-related games, take a look at their frontpage here. Stay tuned for part two of our interview with Senses Fail’s Buddy Nielsen where he discusses the band’s ‘Renacer’ album, their fall tour plans and more coming soon.
Check Out a Few Screen Captures from Senses Fail’s ‘Grind Core’ GameChanger Game