Interviews

Metrocide interview: "there's so much fun to be had in a dystopia"

Shaun Prescott at

Metrocide is a forthcoming top-down stealth shooter developed by Sydney studio Flat Earth Games. The team, made up of brothers Leigh and Rohan Harris, is best known for the whimsical survival game Towncraft. Metrocide is entirely different: lush greens have been replaced with cyberpunk chromes, while instead of chopping down trees you'll be murdering in cold blood.


Hearthstone Curse Of Naxxramas interview: "We're keeping an eye on" Zoo

Tim Clark at

Tomorrow sees the second wing of Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas expansion opening its mouldering doors to players around the world. So now felt like the perfect time to talk to Blizzard about the current state of the game and what we can expect from the future. I nervously approached the giant ebony coffins of senior game designer Ben Brode and production director Jason Chayes and asked them about the new cards, how close they came to nerfing Leeroy, what's going to be done about the seemingly unstoppable Zoo onslaught, and whether we'll ever get more deck slots…


Interview: Cliff Bleszinski on Project BlueStreak, PC gaming, FPS design, moddability

Evan Lahti at

Earlier this month Cliff Bleszinski revealed his next project: a free-to-play, PC-focused arena shooter called Project BlueStreak created by Boss Key Productions, his new studio. Following a Reddit AMA that answered some surface-level questions about the game, I spoke with Bleszinski about what sort of shooter he’s hoping to create.


PC classic commentary: Tyrian 2000 with Alexander Brandon

Wes Fenlon at

PC Gamer's classic commentaries are special interviews with the developers of some of our favorite games. Join us for an hour with a classic game and the inside stories of its creation.

Before he composed the music for Jazz Jackrabbit, or Unreal Tournament, or Deus Ex, Alexander Brandon helped design one of the PC's all-time great SHMUPs. That game was Tyrian, which Epic MegaGames published as shareware in 1995. Compared to most Japanese SHMUPs, Tyrian was utterly packed with features—a story mode and an arcade mode, tons of weapons and upgrades, secret levels, secret modes, multiple ships. And at the time, its smooth 2D parallax scrolling was a mini technical marvel. Brandon wrote music for Tyrian, but he also contributed to writing and design. Our hour-long chat is full of stories from the early days of Epic and the 1990s freeware scene.

ESL One Frankfurt: Loda discusses Alliance's tournament performance, rat Dota, and the impact of winning The International

Chris Thursten at

Jonathan 'Loda' Berg has been part of the competitive Dota scene for as long as there's been a scene to be part of. He was the man holding the Aegis of Champions aloft at the end of The International 2013, and his team—Alliance—are one of the most effective, efficient, and idiosyncratic teams in the world. I first met Loda at TI3, when I interviewed him the night before the grand final. That interview became this article. After Alliance's loss to tournament champions iG in the semi finals of ESL One Frankfurt I spoke to Loda for half an hour about the current metagame, that incredible match against Cloud 9, and the way that winning TI3 has affected Alliance for better and for worse. This is a long interview, but I think most Dota fans would appreciate seeing the whole thing so you'll find it all below.


ESL One Frankfurt: Mousesports' Pajkatt talks Axe, iG, and why Dota 2 should be played live

Chris Thursten at

Image via the official ESL Twitter account.

Per Anders 'Pajkatt' Olsson Lille has been playing competitive Dota since prior to the first International, which he attended with Online Kingdom. He played for LGD.int at TI2 and will return this year with Mousesports, formerly Team Dog, who earned their place in TI4 with a fantastic performance in the European qualifiers. Yesterday, they got knocked out of ESL One Frankfurt following a close-fought – and very exciting – series of matches against Invictius Gaming.

I spoke to Pajkatt an hour after the game to talk about that first blood, the reasons why they lost, the danger of Pugna and the plan between now and TI4.

Shadowgate interview: crowdfunding, art style, and making a classic game just modern enough

Cory Banks at

I really wanted to fight wizards as an eight-year-old. I watched my older brother play Dungeons & Dragons with his friends, but I was far too young to join them as they adventured through castles and battled dragons. So when my brother sat me down in front of the NES version of Shadowgate, it felt like I was finally getting an adventure of my own. A terrifying, difficult adventure, where one wrong click meant instant death.

Twenty-five years later, the original developers are bringing Shadowgate back, this time to Steam. Developer Zojoi has reimagined what standing in front of the living castle should feel like, adding a (slightly) modern interface to the same punishing adventure gameplay of the original. Ahead of its summer release, I spoke to design director Karl Roelefs about what makes a modern Shadowgate, and why the team used illustrations instead of 3D models.


Rainbow Six Siege interview: how destruction works, moddability, hostage design

Evan Lahti at

Rainbow Six Siege was our favorite game at E3. The promise of a Rainbow reboot centered around competitive multiplayer and high-fidelity destruction captured our tactical imaginations, but Ubisoft’s narrow, one-level demo left us with a ton of unanswered questions. How does destruction work? Would it be moddable? Can hostages move on their own? What form will co-op take?


Star Citizen interview with Chris Roberts at E3 2014

PC Gamer at

We've played Star Citizen's Arena Commander module and gotten our first taste of dogfighting in Chris Roberts' new universe. At E3 2014, we had time to talk to the man himself. Roberts gave us all kinds of information about the current state of Star Citizen and what's coming in the next two years. He talks about the Oculus Rift, planetside gameplay, server architecture, and much more.


Lucky's Tale interview: Paul Bettner on crafting a 3D platformer for the Oculus Rift

Wes Fenlon at

The most surprising, charming game I played at E3 was on the Oculus Rift, but it wasn't bullet-dodger Superhot or fright factory Alien Isolation. It was platformer Lucky's Tale, which looks and plays a whole lot like 3D Mario. But man oh man, does VR make a difference. The sense of depth it adds is immediately helpful and immersive, and I knew immediately VR would have been a killer feature in a game like Super Mario 3D World on the Wii U. But Lucky's Tale will be a PC, Oculus Rift exclusive, launching alongside the consumer version of the Rift at an unannounced future date. The demo was so exciting, I had to find out more.

In my last E3 appointment, I spent 30 minutes talking with creator Paul Bettner about how his studio stumbled onto the idea of doing a traditional platformer in VR, the technical challenges of nailing the VR camera, and the future of Oculus hardware.


Dragon Age: Inquisition interview: the world, party, and how BioWare's biggest Dragon Age plays on PC

Evan Lahti at

Dragon Age: Inquisition was one of our favorite things at E3. After checking out EA's generous gameplay demo on the floor, I inquired with Dragon Age's Creative Director, Mike Laidlaw, about how party members will influence story decisions, how Inquisition plays on PC, and a few other things I was curious about.


Paul 'ReDeYe' Chaloner talks ESL One Frankfurt, casting, and the future of e-sports

Chris Thursten at

Paul 'ReDeYe' Chaloner has been involved in e-sports for fifteen years as a shoutcaster, host, and presenter. He's seen every part of the business, from amateur bedroom casting to addressing thousands of people on stage. Next week, he'll be hosting his first Dota 2 tournament—ESL One Frankfurt. Earlier in the week I spoke to Paul about his expectations for the tournament, how he goes about preparing for an event this big, and how the business of presenting e-sports has changed over the years.


Shroud of the Avatar E3 interview: Lord British speaks to his people

Wes Fenlon at

E3 2014 is the first time that many in the press have been able to see Shroud of the Avatar, the new crowdfunded role-playing game from Ultima creator Richard Garriott. But that doesn't mean its backers are in the dark. Garriott, aka Lord British, says the people who have backed his game are included in every step of the process—some have even created art or music that will be used in the game.

PC Gamer spoke with Garriott and executive producer Starr Long on the E3 floor about the game, and how transparency—and the Unity engine—has changed the game development process for the better.

Tales from the Borderlands interview with Telltale's Kevin Bruner

PC Gamer at

Telltale's Tales from the Borderlands is on display at E3 2014, and features editor Wes Fenlon got a first look at the Walking Dead developer's newest game. Here, Wes talks to Telltale president Kevin Bruner about how the studio started collaborating with Borderlands creator Gearbox Software, and how the team switches up the mood from zombie survival to sci-fi comedy.


Assassin's Creed: Unity dev talks player freedom and open-ended assassinations

Samuel Roberts at

After getting duly excited about yesterday's big reveal of Assassin's Creed: Unity's four-player co-op mode and NPC-packed setting, we sent Sam sneaking past the guards at E3 to bring us more info. He spoke with Alexandre Amancio, creative director at Ubisoft Montreal, about the changes Ubisoft is making to the way Assassin's Creed handles freedom and complexity. Here's the transcript of that interview.


David Braben on the ambitious future of Elite: Dangerous

Andy Kelly at

“There are over 100 billion star systems,” Elite creator David Braben tells me when I ask if that number could possibly be true. “In fact, it’s closer to 400 billion. It’s a very silly number anyway.” Elite: Dangerous is the modernised sequel to the classic freeform space sim, and there’s no faulting developer Frontier’s ambition. The game sees you, a rookie pilot, set loose in a vast celestial sandbox with 100 credits in your space-wallet and dreams of achieving the ultimate pilot rating: elite. How you do this is up to you, whether you become a trader, a pirate, a smuggler, and many more jobs besides.

Braben compares his vision of the Milky Way to the California gold rush of the 1800s. “When there was a gold rush in San Francisco in 1849, many of the people who made money didn't mine a single piece of gold. What they did was take a cargo of spades and things like that, and sold them at stupidly inflated prices. Our galaxy will be continuously evolving. You might get the occasional gold rush, which changes the status of a particular place. Players will be running in to try and get some of the gold that’s been discovered in some outlying system. But what else will happen is that a whole raft of other things will be in demand. The need for food and equipment will skyrocket.”


Unreal Tournament interview: on transparent development, the best UT guns and "pure, fast action"

PC Gamer at

Epic recently announced that they're making a new free Unreal Tournament game in collaboration with the UT community. This is good news. We like Unreal Tournament. Only yesterday, Andy wrote about his love for Facing Worlds. The monstrous flak cannon took the top spot in our roundup of gaming's greatest guns. With misty-eyed memories of frags gone by, we fired over some questions to Steve Polge, senior programmer and project lead on the new Unreal Tournament, to find out how this community collaboration thing will work.


Transformers Universe interview: building new robots for a free-to-play universe

PC Gamer at

Why can't the Autobots and Decepticons ever get along? Well, sadly they're programmed to punch each other forever. That does make the Transformers setting a fitting one for a game about brutal, neverending war, however. It's a slightly unexpected direction for Jagex, the creators of the relatively peaceful MMO, Runescape, so we caught up with vice president David Nicholson to ask him about building new bots and the challenges of capturing the magic of a much-loved series.


Interview with Tripwire's John Gibson: "Microsoft's done their best to kill gaming on PC for as long as I can remember"

Wes Fenlon at

In April, I spent an entire day at Tripwire Interactive's office in Atlanta, Georgia getting the first look at Killing Floor 2. We talked about KF2's new gore system (enemies burst apart dynamically in 19 places), blood system (every drop of blood stays on the map for an entire match), and new guns, which live up to Tripwire's reputation for accuracy.

I also spent a good deal of time talking to Tripwire president John Gibson about PC gaming at large—his thoughts on SteamOS and the Steam Controller, Epic's Unreal Engine 4, and Battlefield 4's ongoing issues. As always, he had strong opinions about the present problems and future possibilities of PC gaming. His boldest prediction: almost every PC game will end up on Linux eventually, and PC gaming will thrive as a result.


Killing Floor 2: How Tripwire aims to design gaming's most realistic guns

Wes Fenlon at

Tripwire Entertainment knows a thing or two about guns—both the real deal, and the ones they create in video games like the upcoming Killing Floor 2. In 2006, as a mod-team-turned-development studio working on World War 2 shooter Red Orchestra, they managed to create reload animations smoother and more detailed than the large teams developing Battlefield and Call of Duty.

"[Back then] we heard 'how come these guys' reload animations are better than yours?’" says Tripwire's president, John Gibson, thinking back to the competitive World War 2 market in 2006. "We heard the same thing about our sounds. We had pretty good sounds in the first Red Orchestra game. And the DICE guys actually said that motivated them to want to do better, and that's why Battlefield Bad Company had such amazing sounds. They were like ‘crap, we have to do better than these guys.’"