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The MAKING OF THE SACRED MIRROR OF KOFUN

 

In early 1995, Jean-Michel Cousteau set out on a mission with Paris-based CD-ROM developer Future Concept, a subsidiary of IDP, to co-produce THE SACRED MIRROR OF KOFUN, the first underwater adventure game based on a real underwater world. Later that summer, Jean-Michel Cousteau led an expedition to the Island of Truk in Micronesia to write the story of THE SACRED MIRROR OFKOFUN and shoot the film and video to be featured in the game.

Jean-Michel and his experienced team of oceanographers, photographers and a scriptwriter began the trip in Los Angeles and transported hundreds of pounds of equipment through the ten air connections needed to complete the journey to Truk. Once in Truk, they connected with the diving ships that would be their home during the expedition.

 Over the next several weeks, Jean-Michel and his team dove 4-5 times each day, shooting thousands of still photographs and hours of videotape underwater, in the air, and in the lush jungles of Truk. The waters around Truk were surround by shipwrecks, including more than 100 ships that were sunk during World War II in a single air-to-sea battle. Jean-Michel led the divers through these wrecks, charting and shooting multiple paths. These dives had to be done carefully, as evidenced by the explosion of an old torpedo just a few hundred feet from the ship one afternoon.

 At the end of each day, Jean-Michel’s team would gather to review the rushes, brainstorm plot ideas, and select the best shots for inclusion in the game. After the team meeting, the scriptwriter would go to work.

 At the same time, Future Concept’s creative team was hard at work back in Paris, developing the game design and creating the high-definition graphics seen throughout the game. Because of the team’s commitment to creating a realistic nautical atmosphere that would complement the Micronesian video footage, each graphic took hours and even days to produce. In fact, Future Concept even consulted with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s long-time naval architect on the design of the ship seen and used throughout the game.

 Jean-Michel’s and Future Concept’s attention to detail provides an accurate first-person perspective to the underwater adventure. Through the use of actual video, photographs and high-definition, high-resolution 3D graphics, gainers eagerly become the fearless Chris Young and use sound judgment and knowledge acquired throughout the adventure to chart their path through the wreckage, past the sunken tanks and the guns, looking for the clues that will solve the mystery of THE SACRED MIRROR OFKOFUN.

 

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