Hello, and welcome to my website. My name is Ben Kutcher, and I have been a developer in the video game industry since 1996. I additionally did some testing in my youth, and if we choose to include that, my career technically dates back to 1992. I wish I could say that making video games happened to me by choice; but truthfully, it was more of a matter of circumstance. I was a competitive Street Fighter player in my teens, and ended up obtaining a job in the industry through contacts made in that peer group. Please take a moment to browse the site, and thank you for stopping by.
The Jackal (Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare)
The Jackal is the player controlled fighter jet featured in Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. This feature was a huge undertaking and involved a large number of people to accomplish.
I was responsible for the primary programming effort, although there were many other people involved. I should give a shout out to Cody Pierson, who was the lead designer on this feature, as he did a really great job.
I have to say that we accomplished this through pure brute force and iteration. I was glad to see it finish up as nicely as it did.
Playable Mech (Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare)
This was the player controlled mech that was featured in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. This was a fun feature to work on. It was done with a small team, and I was responsible for the primary programming effort.
The goal here was to have a different game play feel. The player was to feel heavier and more powerful than normal, but with an intuitive interface. Lots of explosions and powerful weapons were the norm here.
Moving Environments (Call of Duty: Ghosts)
In this video, we showcase the train mission in Call of Duty: Ghosts. The mission is
called "The Ghost Killer". Working on Ghosts, I was asked to make the Call of Duty
engine work on a moving environment. This level is the best example of that technology.
I have to admit, this task proved to be extremely challenging. What you see here, is pretty much the entire engine working on a moving environment. In order to complete this goal, I ended up modifying countless systems. From player control, to collision, to special effects, I just kept working through problems until the system was eventually complete. Although there are a few secrets we used to get this to work, there really are no smoke and mirrors. All of the gameplay is taking place on top of the train, while it is indeed moving through the environment.
To a large degree, this technology also works in online multiplayer. The video above does not demonstrate it, but we have several multiplayer maps that use this technology in Ghosts.
Nail the Trick (Tony Hawk: Project 8)
The video above demonstrates Nail the Trick, which was the big feature I worked on in the
Tony Hawk series. Over the years, we have received some really great praise for this. You
can see some of the media comments below. One final note of interest, is that I am on an
Activision Nail the Trick patent.
"At its finest, Nail the Trick is like an air ballet, a carefully choreographed dance between skater and board."
"Why would they call the very prettiest thing to have appeared in games for over five hundred years, "Nail The Trick Mode"? It should be called, "Glistening Dew On A Spring Morning Mode", or "Kari Off Of Mythbusters Mode". Not Nail The Trick. The idiots."
"Nail the Trick mode is a cool-looking addition that has a positive impact on the gameplay."
This engine is a little dated now, but I feel it is still worth leaving on here. Ever since I have been a video game programmer, I have had a hobby engine. I have traditionally used this to study. It has been an invaluable tool to be able to study algorithms in my personal sandbox, before implementing them in a large production grade game engine. Most of the artwork you see here is programmer art, but some close friends of mine donated some character models and animation for me to use.
What is interesting with what you see here, is that everything was written from a fairly low level. Everything you see is written directly on top of DirectX. Lighting, Shadows, Animation, Collision, Object and Memory Management, Effects, all written from scratch.
I don't really see myself working on this any more, at least not in the near future. I am too busy with work and life. For now, please take a look at the video.