- Posted September 27th, 2008 at 06:41 EDT by
- 14 Comments
In today’s industry it’s always refreshing to find that some companies are willing to raise the bar and inject a little innovation into a genre growing as rapidly stale and ubiquitous as the First-Person Shooter. Chances are that the majority of you have already downloaded the demo for LucasArts' upcoming title Fracture, the first game to feature full-fledged terrain deformation. Due to the positive feedback of the demo, PlayStation Universe decided to contact LucasArts to get our readers a little more info on the game. Vicki Miller, a production assistant, was able to take the time out of her schedule to sit down and answer some of our questions.
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PSU: The biggest selling point for Fracture seems to be the highly unique terrain deformation. What types of obstacles did you guys encounter when trying to incorporate this fantastic element into your title?
Vicki Miller: There were a number of technical and design challenges that arose due to terrain deformation during the development of Fracture. Being able to manipulate the ground impacted many of the other major systems in the game such as AI. In most games, the AI can count on being able to travel along a set path from point A to point B. In Fracture however, that path is continually changing. It was a big challenge for the engineers to make sure that the AI would make intelligent decisions both in path-finding and tactics when the battlefield was constantly morphing. You’ll find that the AI doesn’t always react the same way to how the player changes the environment. For example, sometimes they will use TD against the player, sometimes they will charge over the players’ cover, and sometimes they will flank the player. It was also challenging in the design sense, because the designers couldn’t count on players always approaching a battle or challenge from the same direction. We spent a lot of time tuning terrain deformation to make sure that players would be able to craft their own tactics in battle, and that they would feel successful with any method they chose.
PSU: Outside of the terrain deformation, are there any other elements that separate the title from others of the same genre?
Miller: While terrain deformation is the main feature that sets Fracture apart from other shooters on the market, there will also be an augmentation system in the game. As the player progresses through the campaign, new cybernetic “augmentations” will be downloaded to enhance existing abilities such as jump and melee. These ‘power-ups’ also play a big role in multiplayer where they will be scattered across the map for players on either team to pick up.
PSU: While the Entrencher is a cool weapon that gives you the ability to deform the terrain, can you let us in on the specific types of grenades that Fracture will offer that do some quirky things as well?
Miller: There will be four different grenade types the player will have access to in Fracture. They are Tectonic, Subsonic, Spike, and Vortex grenades. The Tectonic and Subsonic grenades will raise or lower the ground respectively upon detonation. They also do a large amount of damage to the surrounding area, and function as an integral part of players’ arsenal. Spike grenades create a pillar of molten rock that forms from the ground, which can be used for a variety of tactical and navigation purposes. Players will be able to lift objects or even ride on top of the spike to reach higher ledges. Finally, the most powerful grenade is the Vortex. It creates a swirling mass of energy that will suck any loose objects or enemies in, spin them around, and then explode with deadly force.
PSU: The multiplayer experience caps out at just 12 players per match, however, how many multiplayer maps will be made available? Also, which of these maps are personal favorites for the development team (and why)?
Miller: There will be 8 multiplayer maps based on the locations in the single player campaign, San Francisco, Southwest, and Washington DC. On the development team, we have a lot of fun on all of the maps. For our favorites, it ... (continued on next page)
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- 2:45am EDT - September 27th, 2008
I downloaded the demo, BORIIIIING, i dunno maybe it was me, but i found the tutorial telling you how to shoot a gun, lob a grenade boring, i fell asleep nearly i had to delete the demo within less than two mins of playing it was that rubbish, sorry LucasArts im not buying this one
- 3:33am EDT - September 27th, 2008
psn id: gingo.... i thot the demo was actually pretty good and it might even persuade me to give this a buy at some point
- 3:52am EDT - September 27th, 2008
"Miller: We haven’t announced any plans for downloadable content at this time. However, a strong multiplayer experience should provide great replay value. "
That's not very encouraging to hear... It's almost a given these days that FPS's get downloadable content. More maps if nothing else.
- 6:19am EDT - September 27th, 2008
I didn't like the demo, but hopefully many of you do and will buy the game. Innovation of any kind needs to be rewarded. And this game is different.
- 8:10am EDT - September 27th, 2008
i think the demo was ok i wont be buying it maybe sometime down the line when its a dry spell of new games. but i think this game would have been better if it was exclusive to one console.
- 8:16am EDT - September 27th, 2008
I really like when developers stand behind there game and give ya plenty of updates, what was my favorite PS3 game that did that .. oh yeah how could I forget!! Resistance!!
- 8:17am EDT - September 27th, 2008
Innovation is great. Problem here is they thought up this "GREAT" idea and decided to center the game around a concept. OK...fine...but the problem comes in the fact that they spent sooo much time perfecting the terrain deformation that the rest of the game suffers. The AI is indeed weak and the control schemes are pretty terrible. The problem is this is a gimmick game..nothing more. The story, the voice acting, animation, and gameplay is pretty bad if you ask me. You have to have more than a gimmick if you want to create a great game. I believe this game will make its money back but if you don't think this game is going to be the first game traded in towards resistance and bioshock and gears than your crazy. They know it has no replayability and won't have downloadable content because this game will be traded in at a week tops. I hope people just rent this and not throw away their hard earned money because this game is probably a 6 out of 10. It has some redeaming qualities but this game misses the mark. Look at the difference in polish and gameplay between this game and The Force Unleashed (a quality game). Same company but tell me this isn't a budget title by their second or perhaps third string developers. This game feels forced and very very unworthy of a word like innovative. Just because something is different or new doesn't make it ground breaking (as i believe innovative should be used for). Lots of games have gimmicks and every game is just about different in one little way or another (characters, locals, weapons, circ*mstances) but just because the ground moves..please don't take a $h!t in a glass bowl and tell me you created a new flavor of ice cream.
psycho_mantis | uncut_raw187
- 8:25am EDT - September 27th, 2008
the demo sucked balls
- 8:52am EDT - September 27th, 2008
i think it was gimmicky like Timeshift...or Haze I want more developed characters!!! I want a good compelling story!! I think the problem is so many developers trying to be original when there are so many AWESOME properties out there, and popular characters to boot! Give me a FPS CONTRA!! How about a new FPS BOND!
- 10:54am EDT - September 27th, 2008
im keeping an eye on this one :P
- 12:11pm EDT - September 27th, 2008
I thought the demo was fair, but its a shame that it hasn't got trophy support would have been cool. Untill i noticed that it was made by Lucasarts which put me off.
- 2:48pm EDT - September 27th, 2008
I thought the demo was prety bad.....
- 12:50pm EDT - September 28th, 2008
lol compare the length of 7 and 8's message
- 12:52am EDT - September 29th, 2008
I thought the Demo was excellent. It certainly makes me want to purchase this one...I love the way people shoot down a game without even trying it. The guns were cool and the gameplay was good. Control I thought were different, but I got used to them. I reckon Multiplayer for this game could be really good fun.
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