I spoke with Battlecry's Rich Vogel and Lucas Davis about how DLC map packs suck, dedicated servers are so "last century", and the game's possible console future.
At PAX Australia this year, I was able to sit down with both Rich Vogel and Lucas Davis - the two big minds behind Bethesda's upcoming free-to-play hack-and-slash, Battlecry. We talked about the game's "consumer first" free-to-play model, the death of dedicated servers, and even the hint of a console version in the future.
But first, we talked art. It's a well-known fact that Viktor Antonov, Dishonored's Art Director, would be heading up the visuals of the game (something which was immediately apparent in my hands on time with the game), but did you know Francisco Ruiz-Velasco, the lead concept artist from Pacific Rim was working on the game's weapons?
"How can we design cool weapons that would have evolved with this no gunpowder rule?"
"We're really working around the 'no gunpowder' rule," Vogel told me, explaining that the world of Battlecry is one in which gunpowder is banned in warfare. "One of the things we're really working with Francisco on is 'how can we design cool weapons that would have evolved with this no gunpowder rule?'" Vogel added that the team was looking outside just video game and movie art styles, and had dipped its toes into graphic novels to produce the cartoony, distinct lines of Battlecry's characters.
We then talked a bit about the gameplay itself. From my hands on time with the game, I had questions about the weakness of the Tech Archer, and the fact that battles seemed to last for quite long, without any clear indication of who was winning. "The tech archer is the hardest class to play in the game," explained Vogel, telling me his role would make a lot more sense once we could play with all five classes. As for the lack of clarity in fights, "This build is actually three months old, so we have a lot more of that in our current build," said Davis, adding "We got a lot of feedback about that so we really kind of stepped up and worked on that for our current build."
Speaking of five classes, the two in-progress classes - the Gadgeteer and the Brawler - would of course be present when the game's Australia and New Zealand exclusive beta launches next year. As for the future? Vogel answered very confidently that more classes will be added to the game as free content instead of paid.