P2 Interview (PC)
Si: Hi, please introduce yourself and your team to our readers.
Krzysztof Jakubowski: My name is Krzysztof Jakubowski and I’m P2 Project Manager and Lead Programmer. With me P2 [working title] - which is actual title of the project formerly known as Project Earth 2 - is being developed by 4 graphic artists and two programmers. We’re all working at City Interactive, a new polish game developer and worldwide game publisher.
Si: Please describe Project Earth 2 in short.
Krzysztof Jakubowski: P2 is a 3D space strategy game, packed with action and many fight scenes, with an exceptionally simple and clear user interface. It is an ingenious compilation of the best elements, ideas and technical solutions taken from the great titles of this genre, combined in an innovative way. It has forward-looking storyline and extraordinary graphics of great quality and richness of details.
Si: What kind of story will the game have?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: Storyline for P2 is pretty complicated. In fact our game designers worked as (probably) never before to make the P2 world as detailed and rich as possible. In few words, its a military space opera. This time, instead of fighting many evil alien races that threaten mankind, the player takes command of a small group of unjustly exiled people who only want to prove their innocence. The player becomes a Capitan of “RSN Infensus” a vast aircraft carrier of the Royal Navy of Aldebaran Empire. The people under the player’s command are exactly like him, which allows the player to identify more easily with the protagonists. We hope it will allow players to become totally engrossed in the gameplay.
Si: How much time has the game been in development? When can we expect to see it in shops?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: We started designing the game just after finishing all necessary localizations and development of the prequel. So we’re working on since Q2 2002. Just few days ago we finished first working alpha version of the game and are expecting the game to hit the shelves on Christmas 2003.
Si: In our last interview covering UFO: Aftermath we've mentioned that the Aftermaths graphics are really well done. Now we must repeat ourselves and say that Project Earth 2, from the few screenshots we saw, looks really astonishing. So what kind of machine will it require to run in full, and, what will be the minimum specs?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: We would like to offer quality graphics that was available only in big movie productions up till now. Using the latest graphic technologies like advanced texturing, specular mapping, environmental mapping, bump mapping, vertex color maps or multitarget morphing, will allow us to create amazing special effects. But we’ll try to optimize the game code to be playable on Pentium III 650 Mhz and Geforce related graphic cards. But to feel really comfortable you will have to play at Pentium III 1 Ghz and graphic card like GeForce3 or ATI Radeon 7500 or higher.
Si: Project Earth 2 seems and feels like Homeworld. How different is it? Which game features are you most exited about?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: As we want to achieve in the sequel of Project Earth, P2 will be a totally different game in comparison to prequel. We took main emphasis on personifying the main characters to deeply involve the player. We will also offer full personalization of unit’s crew, so player’s pilots will specialize in fighting and flying certain types of the spaceships. Every mission will have separated strategic and tactic stages with few strategic maps and screens. In the game player will meet many types of spaceships with diversified behavior and types of attacks. Differentiation of available weapons: Light weapons - fast and accurate but unable to destroy heavy ship; Heavy weapons - slow and misfire but causing big damage. Module-based spaceships - many of them will be additionally animated (will change its shape, gun turret will be moving etc.). That’s the only few of ideas we are right now working on to include into the gameplay.
Si: What we all don't like to see in games are the useless attacks by the computer. When base defenses gets established nothing anymore can get to you and you can easily prepare and eliminate the enemy. So how strong A.I. can we expect in Project Earth 2?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: While designing AI algorithms and system we are trying to keep that in mind and therefore avoid situations like described. In most cases such situations happens cause of specifically designed scenarios. Knowing that, we thought about it and made the scenarios avoiding those situations. Of course we will try to balance the game to maintain best level of difficulty (high enough to offer emotional game play but not to discourage the player).
Si: How many races will there be?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: Only one but we will offer minimum 20 missions available to the player. In plus the player will have to pass several additional missions to get credits and be able to buy necessary ships and hire pilots/mercenaries to get trough the game.
Si: Will each race have its own unique units?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: Yes it will. The game will offer a big variety of new units available for the player and to fight against. We’re planning to create more than 70 different ships for the game. Most of them will be playable and available for the player in different missions. During the gameplay the player will have to deal with and make alliances with many different communities living on different planets. But it will depend only to his decision if he would like to join or fight with somebody.
Si: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Krzysztof Jakubowski: The idea of producing P2 came from the really hardcore space RTS gamer circles. They are our main advisors and game designers. They assist in the production and tests the game. Thanks to that, P2 is developed indirectly by the players and directly for the players. We are sure it will be able to satisfy everyone keen to RTS. We want the game to be intuitive and packed with fun and action. Everyone will be able to enjoy it without having to spend hours on learning interface options and getting familiar with the game controls.