Carlos Montero is the lead environment artist for Champions Online.
"Meet the Team" InterviewEdit
Q: What do you do on Champions Online?
A: I am become life, creator of worlds! In other words, I am the lead environment artist for Champions Online. I get to do lots of awesome stuff like drive the artistic vision behind our epic environments and guide our team of totally awesome environment artists with rocking out and making sweet environments. When I'm not doing that, I'm figuring out how we're going to push the boundaries even more and really make the environments exciting and captivating.
Q: How long have you worked in gaming, and what did you do before Champions Online?
A: I've been working on level design, game mods and independent game projects off-and-on since I was in middle school. It took me a long time to figure out that making games was actually a real job! Once I did, I immediately went to the nearest school that had a game degree, lived, breathed and ate game art for a few years and then battled my way into the industry. Three years, two manly scars and many dead ninjas later, I landed here at Cryptic.
Q: What part of Champions Online are you the most excited about?
A: Millennium City, without a doubt. It's been the most challenging of all of our environments to develop, and I believe that it will be the most rewarding. I'd love to tell you more about it, but that would ruin the surprise, wouldn't it?
Q: What do you draw inspiration from?
A: Art in all forms. Film, games, literature, music – there are so many creative people and beautiful things in the world, and I love to explore these things and find my inspiration in them.
Q: Who is your favorite Champions Online character?
A: Menton! I mean, come on – evil super-nerd with mind control powers? Plus I'm a sucker for anyone and anything involving giant brains.
Q: What superpower would you want and why?
A: The power to stop time and work on my art for as long as I like. Wait, no – I want mind control. No, wait, telekinesis. WAIT, I got it, the power of DECISIVENESS.
Q: What do you like to do in your free time?
A: I love spending time with my family and continuing to work on my own independent projects. I'm also a big fan of photography and "researching" videogames. Also, I seem to enjoy forgetting things and getting lost.
Q: Name three things you can't live without.
A: My family, my computer and my camera.
Q: What is on your iPod?
A: Streetlight Manifesto, Regina Spektor, Spineshank, Head Automatica, Gym Class Heroes. I'm a bit weird when it comes to music. I listen to a lot of different stuff.
Q: Who are your favorite artists?
A: I've always been fascinated by artists who use science and technology to influence and push the boundaries of their art. Guys like Leonardo da Vinci, Giger and Masamune Shirow to name a few.
Q: What advice do you have for someone who wants to break into gaming?
A: Leave your ego at the door. If you really want to be a great artist, you must become an eternal humble student. There is always something new to learn, and everyone you meet and everything you do can teach you something. Never be afraid to ask questions.
Q: Is there anything you would like to add?
A: Yes. Wait, I forgot. What was the question again? Where did I leave my soda?