Summary: JCal goes one-on-one with the developers of Dark Messiah of Might and Magic, the first-person, Source-powered action-RPG. And check out those screenshots! Whoah nellie, I remember when renders didn't look as good.
FiringSquad: First, how did the idea behind Dark Messiah of Might and Magic come about?
Waubert de Genlis: Dark Messiah of Might and Magic was born from the meeting of several factors/ideas. First Arkane Studios was working on a new game after Arx Fatalis, and they were looking for a technology and a publisher. They got in touch with Valve and soon they had an agreement with them to use the Source engine. In the meantime, Ubisoft had bought the Might and Magic brand and was looking for original titles to revive the franchise. Ubisoft and Arkane Studios eventually got in touch and found a mutual interest in giving birth to Dark Messiah of Might and Magic.
FiringSquad: How did Arkane Studios get the gig to actually develop the game?
Waubert de Genlis: It didn’t really happen like that. Arkane Studios already had a concept, and Ubisoft had a brand and a will to promote it with high quality projects. This is how the game was born.
FiringSquad: How hard was it to create a first person action-RPG that still retained the Might and Magic content and themes?
Waubert de Genlis: Dark Messiah of Might and Magic does not really retain the content from old Might and Magic titles, as the universe has been totally reworked. There are still some elements, such as factions and the importance of dragons in the world’s mythology, but the rest of the universe is much more mature in tone and more cohesive.
FiringSquad: What can you tell us about the storyline for the game and how it fits into the Might and Magic universe?
Waubert de Genlis: The story of Dark Messiah of Might and Magic starts 20 years after the conclusion of the events described in the Heroes of Might and Magic V campaign, which revealed the first steps towards the realization of the Demon Messiah’s prophecy.
Waubert de Genlis: There is only one playable character in Dark Messiah as it is an action game. You play as Sareth, a young apprentice sent by his master to deliver an artifact to a friend in Stonehelm, a free city of the East.
FiringSquad: What kind of locations and missions will the player get to see in the game?
Waubert de Genlis: The locations include a temple, a city, catacombs, caves and a boat. Examples of mission objectives range from recovering an item, chasing down an enemy, defeating a boss or protecting an NPC.
FiringSquad: What are some of the more memorable creatures that the player will encounter in the game?
Waubert de Genlis: Cyclops, Paokai (a blind dragon that lives in orcish regions)…but of course we hope that all creatures will be memorable! We worked a lot on the AI to make it act and fight in a realistic way. They can sense the environment and use it against you and most of them will have some competencies in combat allowing them to dodge, parry, and develop tactics…
FiringSquad: The multiplayer features in the game sound pretty interesting. What can you tell us about the dev team's plans for multiplayer in the game?
Waubert de Genlis: The game will provide deathmatch, team deathmatch and the brand-new Crusade mode, all of which support up to 32 players on the same map. The team at Kuju in the UK has been solely dedicated to that part of the game.
Waubert de Genlis: Dark Messiah of Might and Magic provides a unique experience thanks to its innovative context-based first person melee combat system. It really allows you to feel sword combat like never before in a game.
FiringSquad: Why was the decision made to use Valve's Source engine and what modifications were made to it for Dark Messiah's use?
Waubert de Genlis: Arkane Studios decided to use the Source engine to be able to concentrate on the game itself rather than to share their efforts on an engine too.
FiringSquad: Are there any plans to release mod tools for the game at some point?
Waubert de Genlis: We have plans to release a map editor, and maybe other mode tools in the future, but our priority is currently to complete the game.
FiringSquad: What is the current status of the game's progress and when will it be released?
Waubert de Genlis: The game is 90% complete and will release this fall.
FiringSquad: Finally is there anything else you wish to say about Dark Messiah of Might and Magic?
Waubert de Genlis: We hope players will enjoy the Dark Messiah of Might and Magic experience, both online and offline, of course :)
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