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Exclusive Interview: TAKEDOWN – “Decision Making is the Core Element”

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As promised, our next interview is with the guys over at Serellan Studios who are crafting the spiritual successor to popular tactical shooters such as Rainbow Six and SWAT series. You may be surprised to know that the campaign and co-op elements are actually the main focus of TAKEDOWN over the multiplayer, which instantly gives us a great reason to keep a close eye on TAKEDOWN. Enjoy the interview and feel free to comment. This will be the first part of a two part interview.

Begin Interview

Can you give us a little background information on Takedown? What’s it about, where’d the idea come from and the main premise?

 TAKEDOWN is the spiritual successor to games like the original Rainbow Six and the SWAT series.  The idea came from fans of real tactical shooters who contacted me and let me know that they wanted this type of game, because of the changes that franchises such as Rainbow Six, Ghost Recon, SOCOM, and others have undergone in the quest to find a broader audience.

What kind of influences are the developers of Halo Reach and Ghost Recon bringing to TAKEDOWN?

What we bring is an in-depth knowledge of how to make quality shooters, and bring that knowledge to bear on creating a true tactical shooter that rewards players who are presented with options and think about their choices, rather than the player who holds the trigger down and runs to the next point in the game.

Do you have a storyline mapped out for the campaign portion of the game yet? If so could we get a few hints on what it may be looking to focus on? When selecting from characters, will they actually have a background and story?

The single player campaign is based on the exploits of a Private Military Company (PMC) and the types of missions they undertake.  The focus of this campaign is the breadth of realistic scenarios presented, such as re-taking a captured oil tanker that is being held by pirates, rather than the cookie-cutter standards of shooter plots today that consist of evil Europeans that have nukes and want to do bad things.

Will the campaign be a linear style or will it feature open sandboxes, say, something like Crysis 2’s areas? Is there any continuous narrative, or are the missions stand-alone scenarios?

While each scenario in the campaign is stand-alone, there may be situations where multiple scenarios link together, such as following up on a captured oil tanker to track down the base of operations of the pirates.  There will not be an “open world” element as is in some games, but a focused set of objectives within defined mission spaces.

How big of a focus is the campaign for TAKEDOWN? Any comment on the planned length of it, or is multiplayer the main objective here?

Campaign is a huge part of the focus in development of TAKEDOWN; in fact SP/Co-Op is the initial focus of development.  Objective based co-op gameplay is the basis of the game, and it is what is being developed first.

Will decision making be an integral part of the experience? For example, saving the hostage, or taking the shot if it’s your only chance to tag the target?

Decision making is the core element of what sets TAKEDOWN apart from other modern military shooters.  We aren’t talking about a linear “cinematic” experience here.  We are talking about presenting a scenario, with multiple insertions, where you choose the team composition and plan, and execute to take down a scenario that may or may not be what you expect it to be.  Player choice is paramount.

Are you implementing any sort of destructible cover/environments?

Destructibility of the environment is not a development priority for us, player choice and non-linearity is.  The ability for the player to choose how to approach a situation using various tools and approaches is what makes this game stand apart, not whether the walls blow apart.  This is a game about choices and thought, not gimmicks.

Can you tell us what engine the game will be running on? Or do you have your own?

TAKEDOWN is being developed on Unreal Engine 3.  UE3 provides us with a flexible platform that allows for rapid iteration of gameplay, which is something that is crucial to this type of game.

End Interview

Nick Calandra
OnlySP founder and former site owner.

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