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Under Cover - Joachim

By Rowan "Sumaleth" Crawford
Vol. 2, Issue 11
February 8, 2000

Sumaleth: Were you a DPaint or Brilliance user?

Joachim: Only DPaint. I loved Dpaint. You could do the same with mouse then as you can with tablet today, except for the resolution.

Sumaleth: You become known largely from your work for Melon Dezign, a group that made the point of focusing on the "design" of their demos rather than the routine-routine-routine approach generally in use. Were you a founding member or did you join later?

click to enlarge!

Some of Joachim's work on Pocahontas. (100k).

Joachim: No, I wasn't a founding member, actually the Danish Melon hated me! But the French guys, who were the real designers, liked my work. Though I had been more of the "artist" type than a designer, somehow Wlat (the designer) loved my design work. (Probably because it was funny.)

Sumaleth: How many demos did you work on with Melon? Do you have a favorite?

Joachim: I did 3 demos I think. I don't have any favorite any more, at least none of my own, but I respect the work I did on Ninja since I was sweating for 4 months.

Sumaleth: Were you still with Melon when you did the RAW cover?

Joachim: That was before, I think. I joined Melon rather late. (Probably the technique I did on the RAW cover made them want me?!?)

Sumaleth: The technique on the RAW cover reminded me a lot of Hof's style, do you think that was the case?

Joachim: Maybe, that's at least what I aimed for :). Or more like Uno, who had been everybody’s idol in the old days. I could work on small areas of a picture for months before I learned the technique. Sadly, it's not necessary anymore.

Sumaleth: The RAW cover was a copy of a Kruger caricature if I remember correctly. Did you do a lot of copying (which was pretty standard in those days) or did you generally prefer to do originals?

Joachim: I think that was my last copy! And I'm really happy I stopped, even though they looked better when I copied them. But copying didn't improve my actual drawing skills.

Sumaleth: So you got out of 'copying' a long time before it becoming fashionable to do 'no copies'.

Joachim: I guess I did - maybe that's why I didn't get as famous as many others. But I think the most important thing is to reach for new goals.

Sumaleth: Ninja was certainly a big surprise to those of us who had started to get into your previous style. How did the jump to traditional animation come about?

Joachim: Well, I had always loved [traditional] animation. Ninja was a LOT of work! That was the first time that I had to animate characters in different perspectives.

Sumaleth: It was unique too, I don't think I've ever seen another demo, on any system, like that.

Joachim: No, that's actually what we hoped to see more of when we did the demo but everybody just continued that design fancy stuff which probably made me quit the scene.

click to enlarge!

Joachim's Ninja. (72k).

Sumaleth: Did your work on Ninja lead directly to your job at Funcom?

Joachim: No, I did Ninja right after I started in Funcom, which was almost 8 years ago. I was still a scene-member at that time.

Sumaleth: Had you long aimed to get into the game industry?

Joachim: Actually, no. I [accompanied] a friend to an interview at Funcom, but it looked so cool - everybody just played games, ate chocolate, etc - that I got tempted :). So I asked for an interview as well and they hired me the next day. I quit school.

[Food interval. Joachim had sandwiches and I went for some 97% fat-free crackers.]

Sumaleth: What was the first game you worked on?

Joachim: The first game I worked on was We're Back on the Sega Genesis (based on a movie from Steven Spielberg).

Sumaleth: What games did you do after that?

Joachim: Ehhm let's see.. many got canned, but the ones we finished were: We're Back, Days Before Christmas, Pocahontas, and Dragon Heart (which sucked big time by the way).

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Credits: Cover illustration © 2000 Joachim. Under Cover is © 2000 Rowan Crawford. All other content is © 2000 loonyboi productions. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited, you silly rabbit, you.