Ubisoft senior vice president of sales and marketing Tony Key has explained how Killer Freaks from Outer Space changed into the promising ZombiU. Key explained that Killer Freaks was more a technical showcase for Wii U, and as time went by the development team started to come up with bigger and better ideas.
“We look at Killer Freaks as more of a tech demo. They came up with this idea. It was an easy execution for them to use the Rabbids technology that they had built to create the Rabbids, the wire frames, to create these very quickly, these little goofy creatures. And they brought it to us as a tech demo for the Wii U saying ‘this is what we can do with the game.’ And we all thought ‘wow, that’s really cool. We should show that to Nintendo.'”
“And before you know it, it’s here at E3 as a way to demonstrate the new system,” Key continued. “And as time goes by, we start to see that there’s maybe bigger and better ideas around this actual game design, and these freaks slowly started turning into zombies because zombies are much more compelling than these stupid little rats we had running around, whatever they were.”
The team really decided that they wanted to take a more serious tone,” he said. “And it was going to be hard to do with the baddies that we had designed. It’s the same studio that made Rabbids, and their devs kept looking at it and going ‘these things need to be zombies. All I see is an ugly Rabbid when I look at this thing.’”
“We were having a blast with Killer Freaks. The more we got into developing specifically for the GamePad, the more we realized how absolutely ideal it is for survival horror. The fact that you have to keep your eyes on two screens at once, it’s incredibly scary,” she said. “It’s a perfect fit. You’re not going to fight it. When you’re trying to design for new technology and a new gaming experience, you want to go with what’s going to be best for that. We capitalized on everything we’d developed for Killer Freaks.”