Interview with Jon Hare

Sensible Soccer comebacks in 2006, and Jon Hare, the co-founder of Sensible Software, produces again the game but at Codemasters this time.

Can you please give us a brief introduction of yourself, who you are, and your role in Sensible Soccer project?
Jon Hare: I am Jon Hare, I co-founded, co-ran and co-owned Sensible Software before the company was sold to Codemasters in 1999. I was the producer, designer and graphics artist of all the original Sensible Soccer Games and now I am also a consultant lead designer on Sensible Soccer 2006.

Please let us know more about the Sensible Soccer, it’s first version, and the new version which will be released 2006?
Jon Hare: The first version was the biggest selling, most popular soccer game of the mid 1990s, it sold over 1.5 million copies and has been played by over 15 million people around the world. It’s popularity was down to the fast, intuitive gameplay, ability to build moves on pitch and huge depth of teams and management in Sensible World Of Soccer. The new version retains all the playability of the original, but adds full cell shaded 3D animation, video style replays, 360 degree controls, four player mode, a fantastic single player mode and a whole host of new features.

May I know why you stopped to develop the series of Sensible Soccer in 1998?
Jon Hare: The development of Sensible Soccer was stopped because we had already put out 2 versions of Sensible Soccer in 1998 and our publishers GT did not want any more at that time. I also think the 3D of the 1998 version was inferior in quality (especially in the horrific Playstation version (which was not done by my team I might add)).

Are the developers of Sensible Soccer 2006 are the same as 98’s team?
Jon Hare: Only I am left from the old team, But Chipper, Stoo and RJ (original Sensibles) are all close at hand if they are needed

What are the main points and features of Sensible Soccer 2006, which make it different than other football videogames?
Jon Hare: Very fast, intuitive, fluid gameplay makes other games feel very slow in comparison, 360 degree control,Up/Down scrolling,Abilty to bend and loft the ball and shoot precisely at the target, Zoomed out view gives much more vision for building moves, More fun!!

Will be the new version released only for PC platform?
Jon Hare: PC, Playstation2 and Xbox

Will be there any cover star for Sensible Soccer 2006, If yes, which players?
Jon Hare: We are still undecided at this stage.

Sensible Soccer was one of the Football videogames that offered “career mode” feature. Will be this feature also kept in new version?
Jon Hare: This feature has a different kind of single player Career mode built around your Custom Teams. I think our Custom Career mode is the strongest single player mode in any current football game.

Is there “online play” feature?
Jon Hare: No not in this version, we cater for 1 to 4 players per game and we have a fantastic single player mode in Custom Career mode, but no online play.

Are you a football fan too – what is your favourite team/club?
Jon Hare: Yes I am a very big fan of football across the world, it is always on my television, and I play 5 a side in a local team too. I am a fan of the mighty Norwich City and I see them about 6 or 7 times a year. They are having a terrible season this year though, Maybe they need to practice on Sensible Soccer!