Guy Cassaday, Senior Product Manager, worked on the GI Joe brand from 1985 - 1990. During that time he earned the name “ King of Big Vehicles “ because of his involvement in the Mobile Command Center and The General play sets, in addition for his interest of big American cars. As a graduate of the Art Center College of Design, majoring in Transportation Design, it made sense that Guy would find himself creating amazing vehicles and play sets for the G.I Joe brand. A few of Guy’s contributions were: Conquest X-30, Persuader, Serpentor’s Chariot, Mobile Command Center, Rolling Thunder, the General, Battle Force 2000 and SkyStorm.
Like all G.I. Joe product designers, they were charged with soup to nuts development of their product designs: basic concept sketches, presentation renderings, engineering input drawings with exploded views, and costing model. In addition, They were also tasked in creating the G.I.Joe prototype from scratch which meant creating each and every part by hand, even the decals! Once the model was completed, it was turned over to the model shop for duplication, so they could make sales and engineering samples. He would also supervise its development in engineering too. Guy shared that it was an honor to work with so many amazing, talented people on the Joe Team.
Not only can you find a resemblance of Guy on the figure, “Cross Country”, but he managed to sneak his last name into the serial number, which is applied to the fenders of the his Persuader, “ CA-SS:9A5DAY "
What were some of your favorite moments working on G.I. Joe?
What is your greatest accomplishment with the G.I. Joe line?
Who is your favorite figure? Why?
"There are so many great moments! One in particular is the time our advertising company from NY NY showed the video from the music group Ah Huh, which was the inspiration for a succession of GI Joe commercials."
"Has to be the creation Rolling Thunder. The idea for RT came from seeing the movie "Aliens". Having seen the original, which scared the crud out of me, of course I had to go back for more punishment. After developing the Mobile Command Center, the onus on me was to create another, over the top vehicle and had to be large in size. Powerful in all ways to kick Cobra Ass! The idea can from seeing the re-con vehicle launched from the deployed exploration surface craft. The rest is history. Bottom line is that ideas can come from any where at any time, when you least expect it."
"Cross-Country...his likeness was based on me."
In your opinion, what characteristics made the G.I. Joe brand team successful?
"It was fun fantasy action for kids. Also, we tried our very best to deliver toys that had good play value and kept the interest of the child. Also level of detail too was paramount, all in keeping with making the product profitable. That always was a tall order."
Who is your favorite vehicle/playset? Why?
"There are too many to list. Rolling Thunder ranks at the top."