Exclusive Interview: Scott Brown, President of NetDevil


You know them as the people behind Jumpgate and Auto Assault, but soon enough, they’ll be known for their next two projects: Warmonger and LEGO the MMO. NetDevil is hard at work on all four projects. In Warmonger, they explore the power of PhysX; in LEGO, well, we don’t know, but it’s LEGO!; Jumpgate is their classic space MMO, which is about to get a facelift; and Auto Assault is a Mad Max style post-apocalyptic MMO, for which we have Auto Assault WarCry. Our wide-ranging interview with NetDevil President Scott Brown, we learn about all four.

WarCry Q&A: NetDevil
Answers by Scott Brown (President, NetDevil)
Questions by Dana Massey

WarCry: Auto Assault was not a commercial success. What level of support does it get today and where do you see the game headed over the next couple years?

Scott Brown: Both NetDevil and NCsoft remain committed to Auto Assault and our development team has a number of cool things in store for the future of this title. I think our continued support on Jumpgate shows our dedication to the games we make and that we will continue to improve each title over time, long past launch or what others would call “commercial success.”

WarCry: Rumours have swirled of some big things in store for your first MMO Jumpgate. What are your plans for this old spaceship MMO moving forward?

Scott Brown: While we are working on this now, we are not ready to release any details at this point. It is something we are really excited about and look forward to revealing in the very near future.

WarCry: With Warmonger, you are playing with the AEGIA PhysX Engine and breaking some ground. What inspired Warmonger and can you tell us more about this project’s scope and future?

Scott Brown: Warmonger, Operation: Downtown Destruction was a project that we built wanting to push the envelope of a truly dynamic and interactive world. Using the UE3 engine for its state of the art graphics and the PhysX hardware for its raw computing power has allowed us to create something that players have never experienced before in a FPS. We have created a sampling of the game that we will be giving away to users to try for free and hope to build many upcoming game packs with new levels, weapons, and features. We are really excited to get this product into player’s hands to check out. Something to keep in mind is that this is a game built for hard core FPS players and it will only run on truly state of the art machines. At the end of the day, we believe Warmonger will showcase what you can do with the best equipment made today.

WarCry: Obviously, the PhysX helps you in LEGO. Talk to us about getting the LEGO IP and why you think it can become a solid addition to the MMO genre?

Scott Brown: There is absolutely no tie between PhysX and the LEGO MMO project at this point. There are so many possibilities with the LEGO IP in that just about any game can really be made out of LEGO and we are exploring lots of cool possibilities that we can not really go into at this point. It is such an amazing project for our team and working with LEGO has really been a dream relationship.

WarCry: At a high level, what is your overarching mission when you create LEGO?

Scott Brown: To make the best MMO ever made. 🙂

WarCry: What lessons have you learned from your past titles that you hope to bring forward into Warmonger and LEGO?

Scott Brown: We have continuously refined our development process over the last 10 years and are always striving to improve in every aspect of game development. One thing we are actively applying is challenging ourselves to be better than the competition in the market, and not just better than our own previous progress.

WarCry: Are you worried that having four active projects at one time will cause any of those projects to suffer?

Scott Brown: Having everyone at the company not focused on the same project allows for a better internal review process and a combination of skill sets that would not have been possible with the scope of just one game. We have already seen value in having multiple different projects, which allows us to share ideas, become more creative, and make the games more fun and appealing.

WarCry: How many people currently work at NetDevil and can you talk a bit about their allocation across various projects?

Scott Brown: We are currently just over 60 people with the majority of the staff working on the LEGO MMO at this time.

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