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Origin Story: An Interview with CJ_Oyer

April 03, 2018

by OldBaronMondo


Whether your secret identity of choice is a mild-mannered reporter or an innocent townsperson, Roblox developer and accelerator program graduate CJ_Oyer’s got a superhuman good time for you. We sat down with him to talk about his two greatest successes, Super Hero Life II and Night of the Werewolf, and sneak a peek at the planning tables for his next smash-hit creation.

I roam the streets as Targetman, whose power is that he’s super visible to every villain on the block.

What got you into Roblox development? Was there a game or experience that really motivated you to get out there and start making your own content?

My dad told me about Roblox hoping I’d find it interesting. I had always been a creative kid and I was building stuff since day one! I didn’t have any long-running successful games until 2012, though.

My second alter-ego, Statue Man, who (after falling into a radioactive vat of steel) became a man stuck in a radioactive block of steel. He wears a sign instructing citizens to push him onto villains.

There’s so many different ways to play Super Hero Life II. Not only are there lots of powers and costume items to choose from, but the whole game is designed for both competitive and RP mode. Was it difficult to balance these factors during development?

I would say that developing the roleplay elements of the game were much easier than the competitive elements. The competitive elements required much more balancing and fine-tuning. It was difficult to determine how much damage each attack should do, as well as how much energy it took to use that power in SHL2.

I take a relaxing stroll down the streets of Wolfeatingyouburg.

While Night of the Werewolf is based on an old parlor game, your version has plenty of new elements. What were some of the challenges in adapting Werewolf for Roblox? What were some of the unique advantages?

When I worked on this game, the rest of the team and I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to best set up communication between players. In the original parlor game, a lot of conversation takes place during each round, whereas in Night of the Werewolf everybody has to type out their thoughts, which can take longer…especially when everyone is talking at the same time!

Here I am having transformed into a were–um, into a slightly fuzzy yet wholly innocent villager.

What advice do you have for aspiring developers?

To any aspiring developers, do what you’re passionate about. Dream up that vision for a game and work until it’s a reality. The only way you’ll make it to the front page is by dedicating time to your projects. This dedication is most easily drawn from the desire to bring something you truly believe in and are excited about to reality.

Are there any updates or projects you’d like to let readers know about?

I’m making a game called “City Simulator” that I am very excited about. It’s not a huge game, so I have a lot more time to really focus on the details of it and try to make it as refined as possible!

A city simulation? That sounds right up our street. In the meantime, why not take a walk down the laser-scorched byways of Super Hero Life II and shadowy cobbles of Night of the Werewolf? And if you want to be the first to know when the new game drops, don’t forget to follow @CJ_Oyer on Twitter.