An Interview With the People Behind Postal

Published: December 10, 2014 3:00 PM /



Postal 2 is one of the strangest games I've ever loved to death. Despite beating the game, I still have no idea how it even works. It's one of those bizzare gaming experiences that, while filled with comic-sans signs and awful load times, is still oddly engrossing. So with the recent announcement of a remake of Postal, I reached out to Running With Scissor's very own  Jon Merchant, Vince Desi, and MikeJ to discuss all things Postal.

TR: You've been updating Postal 2 for over ten years now! Why support Postal 2 rather than move on to other projects?

Jon: During our greenlight campaign we promised our community we would update P2 in a number of ways if we got successfully greenlit, so for the first year it was simply a case of keeping true to our word. Due to the positive response from that we decided to take it further and spend another 6 months providing free updates.  We wanted to win back trust from our core supports after letting them down with POSTAL III.
It was then we decided to keep up our mometum and work on some new commercial DLC, and the Paradise Lost idea was born.
Vince:  For me its been easy because there was so much more we wanted to do with P2 that we didn't get done, so being able to support it all these years has been alot of fun and kinda weird cause developers are never really done and this allowed us to live that.

Postal 2 generated a lot of controversy back in the day, and it seems like the media is as hypersensitive as ever. How do you think people will respond to the Postal remake?

Speaking of the Postal remake, why did you decide to remake Postal?

MikeJ: POSTAL was a unique game when it was released in 97 and it is still a unique game today. The controls and 3D don't hold up today. It seemed like something that needed a fix as the art style and gameplay type would make for a fun shooter across all platforms!
Jon: We've been throwing the idea around for years now, although at first we were considering something a bit different, more of a 3D re-imaging along the lines of Dead Nation or the upcoming Hatred. We recently took on a very talented artist and tasked her to redraw the first level of P1 to see how she'd handle it and if a more faithful 2D art remake would be the way to go. After seeing it we were in no doubt it's what we should do and announced the project the next day.
Vince: I have no f***** idea really, but I feel good about it. For so many gamers it will be a new experience and for our die hard fans it will be a tribute and reincarnation so I'm excited.

Will there be any major differences aside from graphics in the Postal remake?

MikeJ: nope. Making the game true to the original with some welcome modern MP additions! Jon: Except all the cheats will now behind a pay wall, for YOUR convenience! Just kiddin', if you wanna be a total sissy and use cheats it will still be free of charge. Other than that we have a few ideas of things to build on that were part of the original game, but the over all goal it for it to be a faithful remaster of the original with more modern gamepaly mechanics.
Vince: I think anytime you recreate an existing body of work you are playing with fire, so I'm real comfortable with doing our best to keep the purity alive and just make it better.

Do you think you will still be supporting the Postal remake come 2024?

MikeJ: Id rather be working on POSTAL 6 ;) but if we still are then thank you, in advance, to the people that will still be supporting us.
Jon: Sure, like all our games we'll strive to keep it as compatible with modern hardware as we can.
Vince: I have a feeling POSTAL will live on long past me, and that is pretty outrageous, so proud!

Postal is obviously very different in tone from Postal 2. With Postal 2 being the most well remembered, do you think some gamers will get mood whiplash when playing the Postal remake?

MikeJ: different styles is what helps separate the titles and I doubt going from game to game would cause much of a mental whiplash. I donno about you, but I like different games to have varying feels.
Jon: There are some that loved P1 but didn't like P2 and visa versa, I personally like both styles of game and am super existed to be returning to the darker, horror them of the original game after working on the very zany Paradise lost. Good to mix things up!
Vince: I've always wanted each title to be different, from POV to art style. We've never tried to please everyone, we just want to make sure gamers enjoy the experience. In some strange way I'm actually expecting a big response, and I'm optimistic our fans will love it, as for the critics I don't f***** care.

People have been comparing Hatered to Postal. What are your thoughts on Hatred so far?

Jon: We're flattered by the obvious tribute to P1 and of course we respect a studio's right to create whatever art they like. Interested to see how the game turns out!
Vince:  First, really its pretty amazing what they've done.  It is an intense expression of work no doubt, clearly they love what their doing and they deserve alot of respect, they have mine.

What sparked your decision to start an 8chan board?

Jon: Pretty much as a joke because of this artwork we made some months ago and tweeted about
After that it was suggested we start a /krothcy/ board, so thought it would be interesting to see what happened if we did.

How has that been?

Jon: Actually, pretty cool! In all honestly I thought it would just get spammed with nonsense and end up being something we had to take down fairly quickly, but there has been a lot of good discussions on there.  It's an interesting way to connect with your fanbase that no one has really tried yet, so we'll see what happens in the coming months.

I've always wondered, how did you approach getting Gary Coleman into the game?

Vince:  Wow, we had this crazy idea that it would be cool to have him be a part of the Postal world, and believe me I have no regrets.  He was a great guy, and unfortunately many people took advantage of him.  I simply called his agent and told him to have Gary call me because I wanted to talk to him directly about a unique opportunity.  Next day Gary called, we hit it off and he came to see us a week later. He was very funny and serious about working together, we had a good time.

How did the Uwe Boll movie come to be?

Vince: I had never heard of him and one day I got a call from someone in Germany telling me about him and that he wanted to make a movie about POSTAL. Despite his reputation he is actually a great guy in person. We were real excited about making a movie, f*** who wouldn't be, and we wrote our own treatment which served as the basis for the film. We had a very different approach than Uwe but in the end I think it came out ok. I just think it could have been edited much shorter and with better timing.
MikeJ: Uwe approached us. Black magic happened and he shit out the unfinished POSTAL movie to virtually no one. Which is a shame because it had a lot of potential, well a lot more then the other piles of crap he released!
Jon: I actually think it's pretty good, as far as video game adaptations go, and there was quite a bit of fan service in there for those who played a lot of P2.

Before we wrap this up, any shoutouts you would like to make?

MikeJ: shoutout to everyone who has bought A postal game on Steam thank you very much for your support!
Jon: Much love to all gamers out there, you are who allow us to have the best jobs in the world and we'll never lose sight of that.
Vince: To all those who play games remember its about fun, to all those who make games its about passion and to all those who write about games ITS ABOUT HONESTY!

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Filmmaker. Entertainment critic. Genre film aficionado. Has bad taste and hot takes.