Our latest interview talks to Plastic Reality’ Petr Smilek, lead programmer on the up and coming tactical strategy title Korea: Forgotten Conflict.1. First of all can you tell us a little bit about Plastic Reality Technologies’ and the development team’s background.PLASTIC REALITY TECHNOLOGIES is a young company established in 2000. We previously developed a puzzle game called LocoCommotion, sold under the name Toytrains. The game was sold in Europe and North America by Take2 and it has been a success in Germany. The player should solve more than fifty puzzles whilst allowing to build his own levels in a editor and share them via the Internet.The development team is full of young enthusiastic people who have already had plenty of experince in game business. The programming staff consists of graduates of the University of Computer Science in Brno, Czech Republic, who have been developing our game engine for a long time.2. Can you explain more about the title you are currently working on, Korea: Forgotten Conflict.Korea: Forgotten Conflict is a 3D real-time tactical strategy game inspired by the war in Korea. The player is a member of a specialist Commando team (medical, demolition expert, sniper, ranger, etc.). All the members of the Commandos will have different tasks throughout five campaigns (comprising of fifteen missions) to complete. Players will experience realistic weather conditions, detailed interiors of buildings, programming of actions of the commando (similar to strategies) and huge levels (Seoul, an airport, chemical factory, prison camp&h**ip;) in addition to lots of in game movies.3. Why did you choose this particular historical scenario for the game?From the very beginning we wanted to develop a game from a very attractive surrounding. We realised that we could use a very important historical event, which happened only five years after the Second World War. We knew that the Korean War was the right choice. We have collected a huge amount of material and after a lot of studying we will comment that the Korean War was a war between totality and democracy that turned into a so-called ‘cold war’. To develop a game according to such historical events is very inspiring.4. What kind of research has the development team undertaken to help pull the game together?Sources for development are mainly books such as ´Dark Moon´ or ‚In the Devil´s Shadow‘ describing the Korean war in a realistic way. We have also watched movies and have sourced the Internet.5. What makes Korea Forgotten Conflict stand out from other similar titles such as the Commandos series?We have improved on some already common user features seen in other games. Within Korea: Forgotten Conflict you will view and be immersed in some highly detailed 3D locations which we are proud of, and will continue to work on as we develop. Some of the new features include a smooth full rotating camera ,which enables the player to have a great overview of the battlefield, along with in-game movies and the possibility of programming and coordination of actions of members of the Commandos. There is a lot more of course.6. As we understand it you are in control of a group of specialist troops. What sort of characters can players expect to control. What are their abilities and why did you choose these particular character types?Not only does each character have their special abilities but also a past history. For instance, my favourite character is American Sarah ‘Honey’ Parker. She is a very professional nurse, who asked to be moved from a mash troop to this Commando unit. Her nickname is ironic because no men around her would only try to invite her for a date, especially after one man trying to arrange a date with her woke up in the morning tied with a rope and naked in the middle of a camp.7. Will players and their team be able to interact with the environments and if so what sort of things will we see?Of course. All the environments are interactive and react according to what you do. In order to achieve some tasks it will be essential to use objects in your surrounding. Use of some weapons will interact with surrounding´s buildings as well.8. How much control will players have over vehicles and what sort of war machines are you including in the game?In the game the player will enjoy about fifty various kinds of weapons and vehicles including airplanes and helicopters, most of which will be used. Besides the usual equipment, the player will use flame gun, rocket gun, anti tank gun etc.9. What can you tell us about the different campaigns featured in the game and how much game play time can gamers expect?The game consists of fifteen missions composing five campaigns, which follow key events of the Korean War; the playtime is about fifty hours. Variability to solve some missions and fulfilling of bonus tasks will provide a longer play time.What can you tell us about the game engine?For Korea: Forgotten War, we are using the new Typhoon engine (the XReality Engine was heavily re-designed into the new Typhoon engine, which is more suited for large outdoor environments) with following features:very detailed 3D graphics , engine pushes up to 500,000 triangles per frame highly detailed dynamic shadows dynamic lighting flexible weighted animation blending system multitexturing (lightmaps, detailmaps, etc.) special vegetation rendering system (grass, bushes,&h**ip;) state of the art particle systems extensive LOD support advanced physics system support of vertex shaders for character animation and vegetation (trees, grass) animation support of pixel shaders for advanced terrain texture synthesis full 3D motion planning (navigation meshes) for excellent AI path planning For the player it’s not important what all above-mentioned features mean, the most important is that the game looks great and playability is first rated.How far down the road are you in the development process with Korea Forgotten Conflict and what is you current estimated release date?Now we are in early pre alpha stage. Estimated release date is 2Q/3Q 2003.12. Finally is there anything you think are a real highlight in Korea Forgotten Conflict you want to tell the readers about?I think that 3D surrounding with ´commandos´ style atmosphere will impress a lot of players. We do our best to produce a first rating game.
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