20 Questions Features Interviews

20 Questions with Dries De Lange, Software Developer

Written by LevelSave

This weeks 20 Questions will be with Dries De Lange [DL] (Mobile & Software developer at @Happy_Metrix ) @_Driezzz

Everyday we learn more and more that video games do not have boundaries. You can find gamers all across the globe, from Antarctica to Alaska. Though everyones game favorites may be different and tactics may vary, but the fun sought out and enjoyed from playing video games is universal. Gathering Online with these folks and sharing this fun is bonus! Now knowing what they are saying may not always be something that happens. But you are playing a video game with someone thousands of miles away with a common goal together with millions! who would have thought?

I took a few minutes to chat with a fellow gamer and Internet junkie Dries De Lange about various topics from policing social media to Easter Eggs in video games. Tell us a little about yourself Mr.De Lange..

[DL] My name is Dries De Lange, I’m a software and mobile developer currently employed at @happy_metrix, located in Belgium. Here we develop a desktop and mobile application to visualize and monitor online data. Companies and organizations can then view their data from different sources like Google Analytics or Facebook and create beautiful dashboards. Info. Besides that, I do play games, some side-projects, events, football, series/movies and of course, appreciating a fine Belgian Beer.

1) Who plays the best James Bond?

[DL] Sean Connery would be my choice. There was a time when there was a Bond movie on TV every friday night. I watched as many as I could such as ‘Goldfinger’ and ‘From Russia with Love’.

2) Do you think that game makers have a right to police users on social media?

[DL] Interesting question. First of all, on websites like Twitter, Facebook and Battlelog it’s easy for people to spam the official accounts with nonsense and bad words. So, it’s difficult for admins to do their job properly. Removing posts and blocking people is a good way to counter that. On the other hand, I’ve seen people get threatened or banned for no apparent reason on fora (battlelog), totally unjustified. But honestly, if you behave on the Internet or when you’re in contact with developers. You have nothing to fear.

3) Social media is shaping the way we play and interact with games, what do you see as biggest advantages and disadvantages may be?

[DL] One of the biggest advantages would be that developers are very close to their customers and the community, including the other way around. For example, when you encounter a bug or glitch in a game; you hop on Twitter or Reddit and report the problem to the developers. Developers get instant feedback, send the problem to the right team and you contributed to the game.

On the other side, with all these social networks and sites like Reddit, lots of info can get lost easily. It could be misinterpreted by anyone and result in people unleashing ‘hell’ on developers and publishers. Or not enough communication, remember the first month of BF4? Even now, a very hot topic nowadays is the pre-order bonus for Hardline. EA and Visceral are ignoring the question since it first arised. They pretend to be open with the community but ignore certain questions that really anger of the community. Why not give clarity right away? It’s mostly above their heads, but someone knows something.

4) What is your favorite video game map in Battlefield to play online and why?

[DL] There are so many great maps in the Battlefield series. If i had to choose one from BF4, I’d choose Hammerhead. HOVER TANKS! I really like the idea and story behind the Final Stand expansion pack. Battlefield 2142 is one of my all-time favorite Battlefields and using a hover-tank in a snowy map makes me all nostalgic (that game was released in 2006).

5) What is your favorite old school video game map to play online? (pre COD/BF)

[DL] Tough one, a random name that pops into my head is Blood Gulch from Halo.

6) Would you remake that map on a modern game? which one?

[DL] Doesn’t matter which game, just make use of the great tech that surrounds the game industry. Graphical engines like Unreal Engine, Frostbite Engine or CryEngine.

7) What was your last game played (mode)? did you win?

[DL] PC player here; last game I played was Verdun. It’s a squad-based multiplayer FPS set in First World War. The game immerses you audibly and visually into one of the bloodiest conflicts fought in Europe. It kinda feels weird playing this game knowing those battles took place only a couple of kilometers away from where I live (Flanders frontline). And that was 100 years ago; never forget 14-18 !

Last gamemode? Trench warfare: a real-time dynamic frontline; momentum-based attack and counter-attack gameplay with a high death-penalty.

8) Is that your favorite game mode? if no what is?

[DL] There are only two game modes in the game, trench warfare and free-for-all. Trench warfare’s the enjoyable and tactical.

9) What has been your favorite map in Hardline? Was it the same before playing the beta?

[DL] From the three we could try, Bank Job was the most enjoyable. Really fits the BFH theme and played out well. Dust Bowl is a typical Battlefield map but I was immensely disappointed in the level of destruction. I could go on about that, but lets do that another time.

10) If you could pick the next thing to be a Easter Egg what would it be? (ie Bear,T Rex,Clown)

[DL] Dinosaurs or Diceperin.

11) What game is in your console right now ? or if your a PCer last game played?

[DL] I’ve never had a console at home. Not that I needed or wanted one, I’ve always liked playing on PC (Master Race). Although I played on consoles like the Nintendo NES, Xbox, Playstation at friends. Last game played, refer to 7

12) What was your favorite project to work on ?

[DL] During my studies I worked on a project where you had to design a mobile app on different platforms. My project was a mobile app where you could discover and rate pubs in a unique way. It was a really fun project to do and you could do whatever you wanted.

13) what comes first transporters or warp drives ?

[DL] Warp drives or light speed

14) Mash up map, if you could merge two BF maps which two would you merge?

[DL] Valparaiso from Bad Company 2 and Suez Canal from Battlefield 2142, don’t forget those Titans!

15) Robert Bowling Jason West and Vince Zampella have done fantastic jobs listening to the community and applying it to a game/system for use with its users, should other companies be studying/applying this to their projects?

[DL] Definitely, the gaming community and the industry can only benefit from it. Now more than ever, developers need to see the value of their community.

16) What was your first and favorite Easter Egg in video games? Megladon, Phantom, Yeti, or from previous years or different game?

[DL] I have absolutely no clue which the first one was that I’ve encountered. Easter Eggs weren’t very popular in older games because developers were ‘afraid’ to put them in games. The earliest Easter Egg I can remember or clearest in my mind was an actual pink Easter Egg in GTA Vice City. Other fun ones I’ve encountered are the Elevator rave in Crysis 2 or the giant rat on parade in Mirrors Edge.

Fun fact: I’ve never seen the Megalodon in action on a live BF4 server!

17) If your ship was sinking and you could only grab two things, what are they?

[DL] My Swiss army knife and a crate of Belgian beer. Convenient right?

18) Best shooter game is COD or BF?

[DL] That’s the big question right? The never-ending discussion which game is the best. I find it difficult to compare them because they’re very different to begin with. Call of Duty is a fast-paced shooter, focuses more on individual skills and fast reflexes. Run-and-gun, hide-and-seek while Battefield emphasis more on strategy and teamwork in large open maps with vehicles and destruction.

In the end, it all depends on personal preference and liking. But yeah, Battlefield ftw!

19) Name the weirdest item within arms reach right now?

[DL] An NSD Power Ball, it’s an exercise tool designed by NASA; you need to spin the ball as fast as possible, the faster, the heavier it gets (up to 30kg).

20) If you owned your own company what would your next game be? pitch it to us in one paragraph.

[DL] A game where you take your user on an emotional and psychological ride in a story that hits them right in the feels! With a great soundtrack, very important!

22) What would you tell yourself if you could send back a message to the 16 year old you?

[DL] Start a YouTube channel with Liquid DnB and call it Liquicity or do video commentaries and be internet famous!

23) If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be and why?

[DL] Difficult, I’ve visited cities like San Francisco and Stockholm and living there would be really great. When I was in Stockholm I’ve made a visit to the offices of DICE (thanks to RollieThePollie). Here’s the view from their famous terrace..Link But my absolute dream would be New Zealand. From the first time I saw The Lord of The Rings movies, I was sold! It’s magic™!

24) What are your thoughts on violence in video games? would you let your 5 year old play GTA, Hardline or a BF?

[DL] Well 5 is really young, and I wouldn’t let it play games like that even until 15 or so. I would start with simple games like Super Mario or even Minecraft. Let them explore their creativity and learn the difference between good and evil. That sounds like what a good dad would say right, thaha.

Thanks for reading folks, till next time plug in your mic and play with someone!

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