The Ubisoft Annecy team consulted with real winter sports athletes – and motion-captured them on a trampoline – to build Steep: Road to the Winter Olympics.
The Olympics, or the Winter Olympics, if you’re that way inclined, only come around once every four years. There’s a hell of a lot of pressure on athletes to get it right, because there’s a long time to wait until the next opportunity comes around. If it ever comes around again.
The same could be said for Ubisoft Annecy, developers of Steep.
While the game proper is fantastic – it’s high on our list of the best winter video games – its big mountain approach doesn’t necessarily translate well to the Winter Olympics programme. Yes, there are races and challenges that loosely match up with Winter Olympics disciplines, but for the most part, it’s an open world game about unshackled exploration.
So when Steep: Road to the Winter Olympics was announced, they had a big job on their hands to translate that open world experience into a game that focuses on the intense preparation and pressure of the highest levels of winter sports. In practical terms, that means a story mode – beginning two years out from the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang – to allow players to travel, practice, and build up to the competitive experience; effectively fitting a structured goal into the open experience of Steep.
Ubisoft Annecy also enlisted the help of professional winter sports athletes to help them build as accurate an experience as possible out of the loose and open Steep framework. Now Ubisoft have released a developer diary – with a few of those pro athletes thrown in for good measure – about the process and pressures of the Winter Olympics experience.
Steep: Road to the Winter Olympics is available now. The Winter Olympics itself kicks off in South Korea on February 9th, 2018.