Last week we were made aware of a brand new Kickstarter project happening right now. It’s not a new indie game like we usually promote, but something quite different: documentary World 1-1 by Jeanette Garcia and Daryl Rodriguez.
World 1-1 is the first in a documentary series on the history of video games. This chapter is about Atari and how they created a new industry, and will focus on the business deals, personalities of the pioneers, and the creations of the engineers. It will be a combination of interviews, archival footage and reflection that retells the story to a new generation that may not know the roots of their favorite hobby.
World 1-1 will follow the early titles before the arcade machine even existed, and will explain how Atari created the games industry years before it should have happened. Jeanette Garcia and Daryl Rodriguez think that it’s time to tell this story, and we thank them for answering our questions below.
Can you tell us a little about yourselves and what made you decide to start making World 1-1?
Jeanette: “I’m a Writing and Rhetoric professor at FIU and I assist Daryl with film production. I’m constantly inspired by video games, films, books, and working through ideas and written projects. These passions excite my imagination and motivate my writing.”
Daryl: “I’m a videographer from Miami, FL. That’s what I do for a living. But I love the games industry. This is my way of marrying both passions.”
World 1-1 is a documentary about the history of video games. Are you gamers yourselves and, if so, which titles are you currently playing?
Jeanette: “Right now I am looking forward to playing Beyond: Two Souls, but I’m playing a number of games from Wind Waker HD to Metal Gear Solid 3. However, I’ve had to take a break to promote our documentary.”
Daryl: “I’m a big gamer. I frequent E3 and PAX whenever I can. Right now, because of the Kickstarter promotion, I have no time to play anything, but the last thing I played was Wind Waker. I still haven’t played GTA V, believe it or not. I’m looking forward to Beyond: Two Souls.”
The first chapter is going to focus on Atari and how they created a new industry. Have you learnt any interesting or unexpected facts about the company that you can share with us?
Jeanette: “You learn a lot about the people who were there and started a lot of what we are familiar with today. There’s a great deal of entertaining little details that we’re putting in.”
You’ve got interviews with some great people lined up, such as Atari founder Nolan Bushnell and Centipede creator Dona Bailey. How easy was it to get these people involved and who are you most looking forward to talking to?
Daryl: “We’re looking forward to meeting everyone. Even those that we haven’t spoken to yet. It’s always nice meeting people in the industry, and it’s going to be fun getting to meet the people who started it.”
Jeanette: “Some have been very easy to find, while others have been somewhat challenging, but we’ve still managed to establish connections. Even though I am really excited to meet all of those we have on board, out of those involved, I’m looking forward to meeting Dona Bailey since she is one of the first prominent women that were influential to the industry. We’ve been writing back and forth during pre-production.”
How many chapters do you see the documentary series having in total? Do you have a subject in mind for the next one?
Daryl and Jeanette: “It depends. We have to figure out how to break it up, but as it is looking right now, four. There are also lots of other things to cover and lots of ideas. We’ll see where it goes from here.”
We love the promotional video, it brings back a lot of memories of being kids for us! World 1-1 sounds like it’s going to be an informative documentary but are you hoping to capture a sense of nostalgia also?
Daryl: “Thanks! Actually, that’s a very good question. We’re not going to make it an informative documentary. You will learn a lot, but the problem is that we can’t fit it all. There will always be people who will watch it and say, ‘They missed this or that.’ But the reality is that the movie will give you a different experience. We want to focus on the storytelling aspect and let you hear from the people who were actually there. The history books on the subject don’t give you the chance to do that. And if you enjoy the movie and want to learn more, you can check out some of the books that are out there. There aren’t many, but there are some. One that I will recommend is Replay by Tristan Donovan.”
Jeanette: “Some of our audience consists of people who played Atari when they were young and watching our film is going to evoke nostalgia. Seeing who the developers and creators are and seeing how they made it happen will bring about memories of their past game experiences and even pick up their Atari again.”
What challenges have you faced going down the Kickstarter route? Were you prepared for these when starting out?
Daryl: “We prepared a lot and when we launched we realized it was not enough. For anybody reading that is thinking of doing crowdfunding, the best advice I can give you is to over-prepare and do your press before you launch.”
Jeanette: “Going the Kickstarter route is a lot more difficult than what it looks like. We don’t stop working for a single second.”
You mention on your Kickstarter page that it’s ‘all or nothing’. If the campaign isn’t a success (but we’re sure it will be!), is there no plan B?
Daryl: “There is no plan B, Kickstarter is going to allow us to have creative control in order to make the movie we want to make.”
You also mention that before starting the campaign you were Kickstarter backers yourselves. Can you tell us a bit about the projects you’ve backed?
Jeanette:” I just recently backed an independent game called The Long Dark, you should check them out. They have just a few days left to reach their goal and they have quite a bit to go.”
Can you tell us which component of World 1-1 you’re currently working on? How are you feeling about its production?
Daryl: “Right now we are in full promotion mode. We’re a small team and we’re trying to cover a lot of ground as fast as possible.”
Jeanette: “We honestly can’t wait to get started. All that we need is for the funds to come in, and we can go out there and start filming.”
Thank you to Jeanette and Daryl for taking time out of their busy schedules to answer our questions. We can’t wait to to see this documentary series and, with almost ten percent of the $15,000 target being received so far, the Kickstarter campaign is already doing very well! Head over to the page by 06 November 2013 to show your support and back this unique project.