With Hellboy coming to next generation consoles, we decided to get some new details on what Krome Studios has planned for their license and what gamers can expect to see. Our interview was conducted with John Whiston, Hellboy's Producer.
PSU: Since you are taking Hellboy on a different route to the movies and comics, what is the main storyline game?
The main storyline of “Hellboy: The Science of Evil” sees our hero on the trail of a crazed witch, stumbling across adventure in a collection of freshly distinct stories, replete with Nazis, Lovecraftian Demons and European folklore. Hidden ties are slowly revealed - leading Hellboy toward a final face-off with Hermann Von Klempt and his most awful creation.
PSU: Will there be any choices gamers can make to change the outcome of the story or even add to the story?
There is an overarching narrative, split up across several chapters and locations. The gamer cannot change the outcome of Hellboy’s adventure but can uncover “Lore” and “Artefacts” as they progress, which explain and add to the story. We have two flashback levels which punctuate the narrative, exploring earlier Hellboy adventures and shedding light on the characters and threats of the main story. While each chapter builds towards the endgame climax in some way, they also each finish off their own individual arc before thrusting Hellboy (often unwillingly) into the next part of his adventure.
PSU: How many weapons will be part of Hellboys arsenal and will you be able to take things from the environment and use them as weapons?
The Samaritan features heavily, and we really play upon special rounds to dispatch enemies and solve puzzles. The Samaritan is a devastating & cool weapon, and we throw secret rounds into the mix for players to find and unleash.
However, Hellboy’s Right Hand of Doom is his favoured “weapon” and our environments are built as playgrounds for his stone fist. Anything that looks like it will break is fair game. From crumbling walls, trees and statues through to entire Japanese temples – Hellboy’s world is highly destructible. You can wield various sizes of “impromptu” weapons – either forcibly taken from disarmed opponents or ripped from the surrounding environment.
PSU: What villains or other characters can we expect to see other than Hellboy? Are any of them playable?
Hellboy faces an impressive range of enemies throughout his adventures. We start with an evil Witch and her sadistic little demons called Bambinis; a hellish fusion of bones and scraps of cloth, with crudely stitched skin. When alone, the Bambini are cowardly, but get two or three together with a leader and they’ll gleefully attack and try to overpower Hellboy. Some ride on mounts, using whips to attack, and then there is the Witch’s ultimate twisted creation - the Bambini Giant. An aggressive abomination, concocted of Bambinis; the torso composed of a multitude of Bambini, stuffed inside and bandaged together with magic, mud and soiled rags.
From there on out, you’ll battle some recognisable characters from the Hellboy universe – Japanese Demons; Undead Nazis; Frog creatures and Werewolves to name but a few. In terms of “bosses” you encounter some truly Lovecraftian nightmares on your journey! In terms of sheer scale there are two behemoths that I’m really proud of, plus four giant bosses who certainly hand it to HB on the way. Our hero isn’t the only creature in this world who likes to smash enemies through solid stone.
Other BPRD agents are playable, plus one really special guest appearance for Hellboy fans that I’d love to tell you more about – but I really can’t spoil the surprise!!
In multiplayer – both Abe Sapien and Liz Sherman are playable and we’re really drawing on their roles from the BPRD comics, animated series and the upcoming movie sequel. Abe has a fantastic array of martial arts moves and playing with fire as Liz is awesome! You’ll have a blast in Co-op!
PSU: Will Hellboy use Blu-ray to its advantage for additional content?
Oh yes, thanks to the added storage we can unlock a great range of bonus content, including: behind the scenes footage; cool interviews with Mike Mignola, Guillermo del Toro, Ron Perlman and other special guests; plus some fantastic art unlockables.
PSU: What plans do you have for PlayStation Store (demos, downloadable content)? And are you guys going to make items and trophies for PlayStation Home?
I’d love to feature a demo on PlayStation Store, but we currently have no plans for PlayStation Home.
PSU: Will there be online multiplayer and if so what modes or match types do you have planned?
Our online multiplayer comes in the form of Co-operative play; giving a second player the chance to assist our favourite blue-collar Demon hunter on his missions.
PSU: What is the planned max resolution and frame rate for the game?
720p and 30fps
PSU: When should we expect to see Hellboy hit stores?
Hellboy: The Science of Evil will be in stores at the end of the year.
PSU would like to thank John Whiston for participating in the interview. Be sure to check out our review of Hellboy closer to its release later this year.