Summary: JCal continues his interview frenzy by talking to Infernal developer Metropolis Software about their game and their PhysX experience!
FiringSquad: First, how did the idea for Infernal come about?
Pawel Miechowski: You know how these things happen - the devil came to us one day and told us to create a game for him, otherwise we would all be damned forever ;)
Seriously – the whole concept grew up upon an idea of creating an unusual hero. Unusual because of his character, style, look - and because of his infernal abilities, on which the gameplay is founded. From the first scratch we knew exactly what features we wanted this hero to have and how he would use them in the game. We based the whole game around this character concept.
FiringSquad: What can you tell us about the fictional back story for the game?
Pawel Miechowski: It's about the eternal conflict between good and evil, while the player soon finds out that the two sides are not as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ as one would assume. In INFERNAL, good and evil are represented by special intelligence agencies. They have been fighting each other since the dawn of time, for human souls, but the methods have since become more... mhm... modern. The main character is Ryan Lennox. He used to be the best agent for heaven’s agency – EtherLight - but was fired because of his rather violent nature: he just loves battles and shootouts. His methods didn't fit well with EtherLight, and worse: his bosses felt Ryan might be dangerous, because he knew too much and they had some new plans regarding their enemies, the agency in service of Hell called Abyss. Now, Etherlight’s first action was to eliminate all of Abyss’ agents. The second step is supposed to be an ambush set to kill Ryan. Abyss’ president – Mr. Black – tries to contact Ryan to convince him to work for the Abyss, because all his agents have been eliminated by EtherLight and he needs Lennox as a kind of freelance agent. On the other hand Lennox needs Abyss because he lost all his special powers after being fired from EtherLight, and he knows sooner or later EtherLight will hunt him down, so Mr. Black and Lennox have to cooperate to survive.
FiringSquad: What will the single player missions and environments be like?
Pawel Miechowski: The adventure takes player in a series of different missions, in a variety of surroundings. The first mission leads Ryan into an old medieval monastery, somewhere in the Alps. Then the story continues at a refinery with widespread industrial environments. The missions vary between open areas and interiors.
FiringSquad: What sort of weapons will the player have access to in Infernal?
Pawel Miechowski: The basic weapons are shurikens and a pistol, followed by machine guns. Later, Ryan will also be able to use more complicated guns such as a flamethrower or a bazooka. That’s not all, but some weapons better be a surprise for players. But the most important thing is that every weapon can be used in two ways: a regular way, and a devilish one. To use a gun in a devilish way, Ryan needs to collect mana, which makes the gun far more powerful. Weapons used in the devilish way give the player different possibilities then the regular weapons.
Pawel Miechowski: Ryan Lennox fights against his former agency EtherLight, so the enemies are mostly humans. He meets regular enemies and boss monsters as well. The enemies have regular human abilities, but some of them also feature special skills. The first mission takes place in a monastery in the Alps, so Ryan meets monks in there. At least, they seem to be monks, while it soon turns out that they are much stronger than any priest could be ;) Here, Ryan will need his infernal superpowers to fight these „monks”.
FiringSquad: What other unique gameplay aspects will Infernal have?
Pawel Miechowski: Definitely the ability of teleportation is such a one. Ryan can teleport himself to a location, which is one of the features that make combat in the game so cool, as this way he can for example get behind his enemies and surprise them from there. At some point Ryan is given a tool that allows him to teleport things and humans as well. Teleporting a dead body into your reach might be useful when Ryan is searching for ammo or weapons, but teleporting a living enemy is really cool when you do it during a combat.
FiringSquad: What can you tell us about the graphical features that Infernal will have?
Przemyslaw Marszal: Most of the locations were created with textures based on real places, so realism was one of our priorities. The game has pixel shaders where avaliable and we used normal mapping for characters to have a very detailed look. Many FSEs were used to give a movie-like feeling, because we wanted the whole game to be played like an action movie.
FiringSquad: How will the game take advantage of the AGEIA physics chip and engine?
Przemyslaw Marszal: The engine itself has immense posibilities for quick and realistic imitation of a real environment behaviour. This allows us to use physics that don't eat too much cpu power and look realistic at the same time, be it explosions, collisions, cloth imitation and much more. The AGEIA card allows players to see much more effects. For example, the card takes care of a realistic fluids behaviour – it looks like a real flowing material, showing water etc with real-time collisions. A cpu soon reaches its limits when trying to emulate this. Also, the card allows us to put more clothes and interactive 3D objects into the game world. The card allows more physical real-time effects like spectacular explosions with lots of fire, smoke and pieces of destroyed objects.
FiringSquad: What can you tell us about the current progress of the game's development and when will it be released?
Pawel Miechowski: The game is done. It should be in stores at the end of Q1 this year. Release date will be officially announced. Thanks for the interview! :)
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