‘The Callisto Protocol’ director explains how SpongeBob SquarePants inspired game

“Cartoons do that very well. Disney, Pixar, or whatever – they give you the message right away"

The character director of The Callisto Protocol has explained how SpongeBob SquarePants provided inspiration for the new game.

Glauco Longhi – who has worked on games including Uncharted 4 and God of War Ragnarök – explained how the new horror survival game, out this Friday (December 2), took unlikely inspiration from the beloved children’s animated TV character.

“The way we designed these creatures was mainly based on different needs,” he told GLHF (via Eurogamer). “For example, we may need to have a character that runs around on walls.


“So then we gotta come up with a cool design that allows the creature to climb up the walls and run faster.

“Some creatures came from the art perspective, though, like, ‘Hey, let’s just do something that is very crazy looking.’ And then we put that in the game and find a way of making it work.”

While influences included sci-fi horror films like Event Horizon and Alien, SpongeBob was a more unusual source of inspiration for the new game.

“Even some cartoons, like SpongeBob. We look at cartoons on the stylization and movement because, although it’s super real and immersive, we stylized a lot of things to make them more appealing.

“So some of the movements, and in the case of the gore, the blood, and how we remove the limbs, there’s a push of style to emphasize some of these actions.


“Cartoons do that very well. Disney, Pixar, or whatever – they give you the message right away. If there’s a fast character, you get it right away [from the] strong silhouettes.”

In an early preview of the game, NME described The Callisto Protocol as the “spiritual successor to Dead Space, adding that the new game is a “grindhouse gorefest that feels distinct from Dead Space and plays totally different”.

It continued: “So far, I’d say The Callisto Protocol was ‘pretty alright’ – it’s fun to play and has a few decent scares. My worry is that it feels like a slightly remixed greatest hits collection and I would want to see some more original ideas that show that Callisto can mutate into something a little more interesting.”

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