In an interview with Gamasutra, Resistance 2 co-op Lead Designer Jake Biegel has revealed that many of his original ideas were "pared down" during development. He also discussed the game's intellectual debt to Valve's Team Fortress 2 and, less predictably, World of Warcraft.
"A lot of it was paring down my original design, because my design was very aggressive in scope, and it still is to a large degree," Biegel commented when asked about how the cooperative mode had evolved. "In the end, we treated it like a flagship mode, in terms of the depth we tried to add to the mode, and we had to taper back from that.
"That's where we got the gravity of the mode, by treating it like a flagship mode, and then pulling back from there. The development of it was very much a very aggressive design. It definitely got scaled back from what it originally was."
Insomniac hunted for instructive precedents both within and without the first-person shooting genre. "We looked at experiences like Team Fortress 2, in which there are dependencies on classes," Biegel went on. "And games like World of Warcraft, in which there are large amounts of people working in tandem, creating this kind of epic synergy to overcome these encounters that wouldn't be overcomeable as an individual.
"We really wanted to focus on teamwork and the buzz that comes from people working together online, because even though there's some downtime when you're not playing together, the buzz is that much higher when the group locks together and everything falls into place."
With Resistance 2 performing competently if unremarkably at North American retail, Biegel is happy with the response from co-op players. "Yes, it exceeded my personal expectations for how intuitive it was going to be, because there's a lot of subtlety there. The thing that I am probably happiest about [with] the co-op is the teamwork that it invokes, organically.
"People just play together, and it's really good for us and inspiring for us to see that."