Chris Jones interview
By Ryan Patton  –  April 5, 2000

Interview conducted by Ryan Patton

On April 5 , 2000, I sent a total list of 26 questions to Chris Jones, co-designed of Under A Killing Moon, The Pandora Directive, and Overseer, also a surprise guest joined Chris Jones...Is Aaron Conner, author and co-designed of Under A Killing Moon, The Pandora Directive, and Overseer. On May 11, 2000, after waiting for interview to arrived, and its was busy for them, so I had to wait longer; his replies has finally arrived, and he brought a special guest to help him out on the interview, Aaron Conner. Both of them has some good interesting things to say...

Dear Ryan:

We apologize for not doing this interview sooner, but as you can imagine, things have been very busy here for the past few months. All of the questions will be answered by both Chris Jones and Aaron Conners, who co-designed Under a Killing Moon, The Pandora Directive & Overseer.

Ryan Patton: I have a lot of questions to ask you from the fans. I would like to say "thank you" for letting me interview you for the first time.

CJ & AC: It's our pleasure.

Ryan Patton: At this moment, how is it being Tex Murphy in the game? Has anything changed Tex's life since Under A Killing Moon?

CJ & AC: A lot has happened to Tex since UKM (just play Pandora & Overseer) , but if you're talking about Chris, he's still the same great guy he always was.

Ryan Patton: From the fans around the world on the internet would like to know is have all doors been decisively closed as far as the continuation of the Tex Murphy game series is concerned? ( And if not...) What are the chances we can expect to see a new Tex Murphy game, and when?

CJ: & AC: There's no way we can answer that question right now. We both WANT to do another Tex Murphy game, but no it's in the hands of Microsoft whether or not we do it. Right now we're working on several other types of games. If they do well, maybe we'll get another shot at Tex.

Ryan Patton: At the end of Under A Killing Moon, the credits say it was dedicated to Jeri Christian who played Francesca Lucido. I know she's died couple year back, but could we have more details? Was it during the filming? Was it an accident? Is there anywhere we could sent our sympathies? I know its 6 years later, but, her part was critical to the game and like so many other characters, she became beloved to all Tex fans.

CJ & AC: Jeri died some time after UKM was released. We're not certain, but we think it was due to cancer. She was a very fun, talented woman and we were all saddened to hear of her death.

Ryan Patton: What are the terms of the merge between Access and Mictosoft?

CJ & AC: We can't go into detail on any of the financial aspects. But we can say that Chris has agreed to stay on with the company for at least two more years. Microsoft bought Access because they liked the products we created. They've allowed us to continue doing what we've always, just under the Microsoft banner.

Ryan Patton: Do you have to have Microsoft's permission before starting work on another Tex Murphy game?

CJ & AC: There's a process Microsoft employs with VERY prospective game. They want to make sure that it will be top-quality, will appeal to a lot of gamers, and will be profitable. If we get to do another Tex Murphy game, it will go through this same process.

Ryan Patton: Will Tex Murphy Polarity be done in FMV and 3D together?

CJ & AC: If we do Polarity, it may very well be a combination of the two. Graphics and technology have improved so much over the past few years, we could finally create the type of world we've always wanted Tex to have. The problem with creating a fully 3-D world has been that the characters don't look real, and we always felt that the characters in out games were the most imortant things, so we used FMV. If-and when-we do another Tex Murphy game, we'd like to make it fully 3-D, but only if we can make the characters look like the real people.

Ryan Patton: Did you (Chris) choose John Berven to play the part of Delores Lightbody in Under A Killing Moon?

CJ & AC: We both chose John. He's a funny guy and we wanted to see what he looked like in a dress.

Ryan Patton: We all Tex fans are still out there itching to find out what happens to the cliffhanger ending at Overseer? Who we all wanted hope Polarity started after the Black Pearl is released?

CJ & AC: Polarity was the game we started working on before we decided to do Overseer (for financial reasons-we had a deal with Intel). In one of the opening scenes, Tex and Chelsee are picked up by a stranger and are both shot. When Tex wakes up ( he was drugged, not kiiled), Chelsee is gone. At the time, we thought we were going to continue on and do Polarity, so we decided that we would use that scene as a cliffhanger at the end of Overseer. Little did we know what would happen. We certainly didn't mean to leave everyone hanging for years ( and perhaps forever). To all those who screamed when they finished Overseer, we sincerely apologize.

Ryan Patton: We all Tex fans was thinking about the 3D that Aaron Conners talked about, but half of the fans don't want next Tex game done in 3rd person like GK3 because it takes away the realism. You know what I mean Chris, by what half of the fans are trying to say?

CJ & AC: As we said, we wouldn't do a 3-D game unless the characters looked comparable to the way they would in FMV. We know how important those people are to the story and to our fans.

Ryan Patton: Chris, if Access are doing 3D, is the game going to be much like Bladerunner game, but different? Have you played the game Bladerunner Chris?

CJ & AC: We both played Blade Runner and thought it was a pretty good game. But, no, we're not interested in doing "Tex Runner", though there were elements of Blade Runner that were very effective and might "inspire" us if we do another game.

Ryan Patton: In the next Tex game will the player be able to choose which interface he wants (UKAM & Pandora interface or Overseer interface) and choose whether or not the game is done from 1st person of 3rd person?

CJ & AC: We don't think so. It would be too much work ( and probably totally unnecessary). We'd end up creating two completely different games. IF we do another game, however, we definitely want to return to having multiple paths (maybe as many as 5) , along with selectable levels of difficulty in the game play.

Ryan Patton: What's the status on the Black Sun Ascending?

CJ & AC: Nothing's been done on the movie version of Pandora, though a number of people and groups have expressed interest in the project. As recently as a few months ago, we heard that someone was trying to get the money together to produce the movie, but we're not holding our breath.

Ryan Patton: How is "The Black Pearl" coming along? Can you tell us a little background about "The Black Pearl"?

CJ & AC: "Black Pearl" is a comic book character created by Mark Hamill (Luke from Star Wars). The game we're doing is basically an action game, nothing like the Tex Murphy titles.

Ryan Patton: Which Tex game is your personal favorite? What or which was your favorite ended of the game?

CJ & AC: We both like The Pandora Directive the best. Last year we sat down together and played it all the way through, saving out games so we could go back and see all the paths and all the endings. We had a blast. We were also surprised at how well the game had held up, both in regards to the game play and the graphics.

As for the endings, we like all of them. Aaron's favorite was the one were Tex and Chelsee have dinner at her apartment and she come out wearing her cowgirl outfit and holding a whip. Chris liked some of the darker endings. And, of course, we always laugh after time we see the "Clown" ending.

Ryan Patton: Once and for all, have you and Aaron thought about doing a television show based on Tex Murphy novel or based on Tex Murphy game? We all would like to see Tex Murphy on television doing a show based on the novel or based from the game.

CJ & AC: We would love to. In fact, we really wanted to talk to Micheal Richards ( "Kramers" from Seinfeld) about playing Tex. Unfortunately, we heard awhile ago that he'd already agreed to star in a new series about a detective.

As for doing a television show, we aren't in the TV business, so we don't have the power to create a show. We'd have to have someone approach us and want to do, and we don't see that happening.

Ryan Patton: Does any Hollywood star or character who played in the game work at Access?

CJ & AC: No Hollywood stars work here, though a number of the people who played characters do. Chris Jones is Tex, of course. Aaron Conner played Ardo in UKM, and Greg Call in Overseer. Other people in include Kevin Jones ( Chris' older brother), who plays Mac Malden; Steve Barnes, who plays Clint, the Chocoholic; and Doug Bandegrift, who's played many characters.

Ryan Patton: How is it like working with Henry Darrow who played Sonny Fletcher and working with Michael York?

CJ & AC: We were big fans of both of those actors, so it was an honor to work with them. They were both incredibly good actors and a lot of fun to hang out with.

Ryan Patton: We were just talking about this console a couple of week ago, and what do you know, the official site just pops up for it. You probably already read about it abvout (Microssoft X-Box), are therir possible that Access will produce games for Polarity and Trance?

CJ & AC: It's poossible. But there's nothing planned right now.

Ryan Patton: Chris, it been two half year when you and Aaron Conners have chat with the fans, we all would like to chat with you and Aaron Conners again for you two to answer questions. It would be greatful, that you and Aaron Conners would chat with the fans again, you could anwser questions and even joke around with us to (laugh).

CJ & AC: We might be able to do that. Let us know when.

Ryan Patton: Chris, the fans would like to know who is that Mystery person at Mystery House that give Tex a implant and also did Mr.Gidion shot himself before the ended of the game? Or, do we have to wait to see what happen for the next game Polarity?

CJ & AC: The mystery person was a henchman working for John Klaus. Gideon DID kill himself after Tex left him alone.

Ryan Patton: One of the books Aaron Conners is writing is Chance, Will that also be made in to a computer game?

Ac & AC: We hope so. We have created three stories, which are all separate, but also connect togetther. One of them is "Chance".

Ryan Patton: What's the estimated release date for Polarity?

CJ & AC: Sorry, there is no release date. If we start working on it, we'll let you know.

Ryan Patton: What set of circumstances, given the present market conditions, would have occur to justify the development of a new Tex Murphy title?

CJ & AC: Well for one thing, Adventure games would have to start selling well again. Sales have dropped considerably over the past few years, while Action games have become wildly popular. That's why we're doing Black Pearl instead of Polarity.

Ryan Patton: Will you be starring as Tex Murphy in the next two games?

CJ & AC: Yes, if we do any more.

Ryan Patton: Chris, what was it like working with Rebecca Broussard as Sylvia and also Richard Norton as Big Jim Slade? Will both of them be in Polarity?

CJ & AC: Rebecca was great We all fell in love with her. Richard was awesome, especially with his martial arts. He's a world-class fighter, by the way. He's also very funny. We don't think Rebecca would be in any future games, but Richard almost certainly WOULD be.

Ryan Patton: I have one finally question for you to answer Chris. Do you have anything you would like to say to all Tex fans from around the world?

CJ & AC: I want to say "thank you" for buying and playing our games. We enjoyed making them and wer're glade to hear people say they had just as much fun playing them. We would love to make more, but we're not sure if or when that will happen. If it does, we'll be just as excited as you. So keep your fingers crossed.

I would like to thank Chris Jones and a special guest to help out Chris on the interview, Aaron Conner. I would to thank Chris Jones for agreeing to this this intrview for the first time with me...Thanks Chris Jones and also Aaron Conner for special guest!


This interview originally appeared at http://
Added by RyanPatton on July 24, 2012

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