Petra Evers (interview)
Petra Evers is an artist who formerly worked in the video game industry. She has worked on projects such as Garfield: Caught in the Act and Parasite Eve.
How did you get involved with Sega?
I applied for a job at SEGA ( in a branch where they did research and development ). I came to the job interview with my back ground as conceptual artist/designer who made installations using text and video. And I had a bit of 3D animation in my portfolio. I was hired as a game designer who had to come up with new games for women. Garfield was my first video game I worked on.
Do you remember how long the Garfield project was in development?
It has been a while ago...I was on for the duration of the project..but can't remember how long that was.
What role did you primarily serve on the game?
I designed the level and made the art work for the space level. Except for the cool animations like Garfield and the robot dog. I remember at that time games started to incorporate 3D animation and 3D looking background elements. I was one of the first who learned to use a 3D software package at SEGA and all the art work for the space level is rendered in 3D. (Instead of hand drawn like the other levels)
Do you remember what it was like working on the Sega Genesis console?
It was all about making it look good within the limitations. I remember working hard at a pixel level to make it work with 16 bits. Of course hardware limitations made you design with repetition of art work in mind. Limited amount of animations etc. For example having the background of the space level parallax (that wavy effect) was a head ache for the programmers to figure out.
Do you remember anything about how it came to be that the Space level was cut in the final release of the game?
What ended up in the game or later releases I did not know. I was as much surprised as you are.
The Space level eventually did get included with the PC release of the game. Did you have any involvement with this?
Again, can't give you insight here. I did not work on the PC port of the game.
How would you describe your experience at Sega overall?
Working at SEGA was really fun and challenging at the same time. I am still thankful to the art director at that time, Maureen Kringen, who hired me and gave me this amazing opportunity. The people who worked there where all super talented animators, illustrators, programmers and musicians. They were very kind in helping me in the beginning to adapt to their game environment. It was challenging because being a "non gamer" we didn't share the same background. Trying to introduce abstract, artsy stuff or a different angle in the game design didn't always go over too well.
Info online shows that the last game you worked on was Parasite Eve for the Playstation. What are you up to these days?
Yes, PE was the last game I worked on. Then I moved to Hawaii to work for Square's "Final Fantasy, The Spirits Within" movie as a special effects and lighting artist. So, yes, I have since then left the games...but coming back through a different door with The Little Greenies! I am still interested in the exploration and creation side of interactive experiences. The Go-Greenies Apps that we currently producing hopefully will have some of those elements. Once you have been into creating games it never really leaves you. It is just too much fun.