Disco Elysium Makes Its Way To Consoles Next Year

Following its October 15 launch on PC, ZA/UM’s detective RPG Disco Elysium is preparing to make the jump to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One sometime in 2020.

USgamer sat down with designer and writer Robert Kurvitz, who confirmed the in-development console port. “[W]e are going to port the game to consoles so you can play on your PlayStation and Xbox. So, you know, that’s my message to you guys for 2020,” Kurvitz said. “It plays really, really nicely on a controller because […] you don’t need to click around and give specific tactical commands, which the controller isn’t very good at.”

Bringing Disco Elysium to consoles isn’t the only job developer ZA/UM is currently working on. In conjunction with the console port, a Chinese localized version of the game is also in the works. Further, an art book with new behind-the-scenes art is in development, as well as an official release of the game’s soundtrack.

Disco Elysium launched on GOG and PC earlier this month. The game puts you in the shoes of a detective tasked with interrogating characters, cracking murders, and solving mysteries. It allows you to construct your own detective persona. You can be a hero, a prophet, or a madman, with plenty of choices to make and copious mistakes to contend with.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/disco-elysium-makes-its-way-to-consoles-next-year/1100-6471046/

Nintendo Switch Sales Reach New Heights, Here’s How They Compare To PS4

Japanese gaming giant Nintendo has announced that Nintendo Switch sales have climbed to an impressive 41.67 million units, with 6.93 million units shipped in the latest quarter. These are big numbers, but how do they compare to other consoles?

Niko Partners analyst Daniel Ahmad shared a helpful graph on Twitter that shows the cumulative global console shipments for most of the major systems. Looking at the numbers, after 31 months on sale, the Switch is on a similar growth trajectory as the PS4 and PS2, which are some of the best-selling systems of all time. Only the Wii got off to a faster start.

Helping improve Switch sales was the recent introduction of the Switch Lite. It sold nearly 2 million units in its first 11 days to get off to a very good start for Nintendo.

The graph doesn’t include Xbox One, and that’s because Microsoft no longer announces sales numbers for its consoles.

Looking at Nintendo consoles alone, the Switch is selling about as well as the original DS over its first few years. Ahmad notes that it “will be tough” for the Switch to match pace with the DS in 2020. DS sales picked up with the introduction of the DS Lite in 2006.

In other news about console sales, Sony announced recently that PS4 sales have climbed to 102.8 million units, which surpasses the Wii (101.63 million) to become the second best-selling system in history. The PS2, with its 150 million units shipped, remains the best-selling console in history.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/nintendo-switch-sales-reach-new-heights-heres-how-/1100-6471047/

For Honor Gets New Marching Fire Hero Next Week

For Honor‘s Wu Lin faction, introduced in the Marching Fire expansion, will get a new hero as part of the game’s Year 3 Season 4 content next week.

Immediately accessible to Year 3 Pass owners on November 7, the Zhanhu comes with devastating new Feats and a long, single-edged blade to deal damage with a bit of distance. The hero, playable as both male and female, is fast and powerful, relying on quick dodges and even quicker strikes to outmatch opponents. Those who don’t have For Honor’s Year 3 Pass can acquire the Zhanhu for 15,000 Steel starting on November 14.

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Season 4 also introduces a new Breach map showing off a great Wu Lin fortress perched on a narrow mountain pass, as well as various Hero tweaks and Feat balances.

A Halloween event is preparing to wrap up in For Honor. Fangs of the Otherworld runs until November 1 and brings with it a plethora of themed loot, a new game mode, and much more.

Publisher Ubisoft has confirmed its plans to implement cross-platform play in “all the PvP games” it has. CEO Yves Guillemot said that the feature is “well on the way” during the company’s latest earnings call. Only two of Ubisoft’s games support cross-play at present: Brawlhalla and Just Dance 2019.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/for-honor-gets-new-marching-fire-hero-next-week/1100-6471044/

Pokemon Go Adding First Gen 5 Legendary, Cobalion, Next Week

Pokemon Go‘s Halloween 2019 event wraps up on November 1, which means Darkrai will soon no longer be available in Raids. The Legendary Regi trio will briefly replace it from November 1-4, but after that, a new Legendary will make its debut in the game: Cobalion.

The Iron Will Pokemon from the series’ Black and White versions will appear in five-star Raid Battles beginning November 4, making it the first Gen 5 Legendary to arrive in Go. Cobalion is one member of the Swords of Justice–a group of Legendaries that also includes Virizon, Terrakion, and Keldeo, which suggests the other members will likely debut in the game soon.

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As usual, before you can catch Cobalion, you’ll first need to team up with other players in-person and defeat it in battle. Cobalion is a Steel/Fighting-type, which makes it vulnerable to other Fighting Pokemon such as Machamp, as well as Fire- and Ground-types like Entei, Garchomp, and Rhyperior.

Cobalion will be available in Raids until 1 PM PT / 4 PM ET on November 26. You can read more details about the Legendary on the official Pokemon Go website.

Cobalion isn’t the only Legendary making its debut in November. Regigigas is also set to appear in EX Raids for the first time later in the month. Niantic is giving players a chance to catch it early through a Special Research story event called “A Colossal Discovery,” which takes place on November 2, but you need to purchase a ticket in order to participate.

Meanwhile, Pokemon Go’s November Community Day takes place on November 16–the day after Sword and Shield launch for Nintendo Switch. The featured Pokemon this month will be Chimchar, the Fire-type starter from the series’ Gen 4 entries, Diamond and Pearl.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/pokemon-go-adding-first-gen-5-legendary-cobalion-n/1100-6471041/

Destiny 2’s Pinnacle Gear Drops Are Getting Fixed

Expect some changes to the Destiny 2 endgame in Bungie’s next update for the game. In particular, the developer is changing how players work through the very top of the game’s Power grind in the new Shadowkeep expansion. The tweaks should make it easier to hit the peak of your abilities in Destiny 2 as you take on its toughest activities.

The latest This Week At Bungie blog post details the changes that players can expect to see coming next week. In short, Bungie is going to increase the speed of its toughest gear climb, toward the “hard” Power cap of 960. Right now, you need Pinnacle drops to reach 960 once you hit 950, and those will only drop at 1 Power point above the gear you already own–meaning for the hardest-core Destiny players, reaching the top of the climb is a slog. Bungie is changing Pinnacle drops to come in at +2 Power for each slot starting on Thursday, November 7, and adjusting how it calculates your average Power over 950 to help players climb faster.

Right now, Destiny 2 carries several “soft” Power level caps that change your progression as you work to gain the game’s best gear and increase your overall stats. From 750 to 900, any gear you earn from any activity will increase your overall Power stat, which is an average of all your gear’s Power numbers. Over 900, however, you need to complete weekly activities to earn Powerful drops. These include running through a certain number of competitive Crucible matches, completing Strikes and Nightfalls, handing in bounties to specific vendors, and more. The Powerful climb isn’t too difficult, but it does require more effort than hitting 900.

Things change again when you reach the soft cap of 950. At this point, Powerful drops no longer advance you to the final gear cap of 960, and you need to switch to “Pinnacle” activities to get more boosts to your gear stats. Pinnacles include earning 100,000 points on Nightfall Strikes, completing the Garden of Salvation raid, and running through the new Pit of Heresy dungeon. There are a lot fewer Pinnacle opportunities than Powerful ones, because the Pinnacle Power climb is meant to represent the toughest, most elite activities Destiny 2 has to offer.

Right now, Pinnacle gear drops only give you one additional Power point for their gear slot, and in order to raise your total average Power, you need one Pinnacle for each of your eight equipment slots. That means that the journey from 950 to 960 is a slow one, especially because there are generally a lot fewer opportunities to earn Pinnacles each week. Players have also complained about getting multiple Pinnacle drops in the same slot each week, further slowing their progression.

Pinnacle drops going to +2 instead of +1 should make progression go a little quicker and easier. Bungie is also changing how it calculates your total Power level once you’re in the Pinnacle band–instead of needing all eight gear slots to hit 951 before your total Power is 951, as it is now, you’ll only need four gear slots at 951 to advance. That should mean that drops for your other slots will start to come in at 951 once you’ve achieved four Pinnacle drops, allowing you to catch up your other gear more quickly. That way, Pinnacle drops for slots that are lagging behind won’t slow your progression as much. Once all your gear is 960, you can still advance your total Power by leveling up your Seasonal Artifact by gaining experience points.

It seems like this is a change that should address a lot of player complaints about the top-tier endgame of Destiny 2 as it stands right now. You’ll still have to work hard to get all your gear up to 960 and participate in Destiny 2’s toughest activities, which was Bungie’s overall goal for the system. But hopefully, these tweaks will make that climb less prohibitive, so that players who are trying to reach the absolute peak of their abilities in Destiny 2 will be able to show off their commitment a little more easily.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/destiny-2s-pinnacle-gear-drops-are-getting-fixed/1100-6471048/

Epic Games Store Update Rolls Out New Enhancements, Upcoming Features Detailed

As October comes to a close, the Epic Game Store has received a handful of updates that should make the shopping experience on the storefront easier and smoother.

In a blog post, the company went into detail about the new features added to the Epic Games Store, including a new storefront look and additional language support. The company also specified a couple of components currently in development, like wishlisting and updated library views.

Headlining the October feature update is the improved storefront, which has received a visual overhaul and optimization. With the new enhancements made, you can now find out what games are trending, filter games by genre, and more. Epic Games has also smoothed the storefront’s experience when incurring high-volume traffic by improving infrastructure and site call patterns. This has resulted in reduced queries to remote data stores and time spent accessing remote databases has almost entirely been eliminated, according to Epic.

The Epic Games Store will also feature a checkout overlay, allowing developers to use the Epic Games’ payment platform within their games. The company will share more details as it “develop[s] new features” for the game overlay technology.

Elsewhere, the Epic Games Store has introduced two new features to the storefront: 3D Secure and Thai language support. 3D Secure is part of a new regulatory mandate in Europe called Strong Customer Authentication. It basically states that digital purchases require multi-factor authentication to secure transactional purchases. 3D Secure is Epic Games’ answer to SCA; the feature has begun rolling out and will slowly become available across multiple countries over the next few months.

Further, if you’re already using the Thai language in your operating system, the Epic Games Store will update automatically to show the new translations.

There are a few Epic Games Store additions you can look forward to in the future as well. Though the company didn’t clarify when these features will get implemented, Epic Games is currently working on bringing wishlisting to the platform, which will notify you when promotions or sales are happening. An updated library grid view is also in development, with a visual overhaul and “multiple polish improvements” in the works. Lastly, Epic Games has announced a partnership with review aggregator OpenCritic, which will implement critic reviews to the game’s detail page.

The Epic Games Store is currently offering a handful of spooky adventures for free just in time for Halloween, including Observer, Alan Wake’s American Nightmare, and Layers of Fear: Masterpiece Edition.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/epic-games-store-update-rolls-out-new-enhancements/1100-6471039/

Disco Elysium planned for release on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2020

Disco Elysium planned for release on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2020

In an interview with the Escpaist, lead designer Robert Kurvitz states his goal to release his RPG on consoles next year.

source /news/9143-disco-elysium-planned-for-release-on-playstation-4-and-xbox-one-in-2020

Leaked Black Friday Ad Reveals Excellent PS4 Bundle (US)

It’s not even November, and already it feels like Black Friday is stalking us, leaving no chance to breathe for those of us who cover deals for a living. But for budget-savvy shoppers, it’s nice to get a heads-up on some of the better deals that will be available during Black Friday, like this PS4 bundle spotted by noted Twitter user Wario64.

On October 24, Wario64 reported he’d heard of a PS4 holiday bundle with three PlayStation hits–Horizon Zero Dawn, The Last of Us Remastered, and 2016’s God of War–and a new Black Friday ad from American retailer Belk basically confirms that deal will be available. Belk’s Black Friday ad shows the aforementioned PS4 bundle will be available for $200 USD starting November 24.

Note that Belk’s Black Friday ad shows God of War III Remastered alongside the bundle instead of 2016’s acclaimed sequel. Wario64 purports the “ad made a mistake,” which is highly plausible, but unfortunately, we can’t be sure at this time.

It’s unclear when the deal will end, but we expect it to last through the Black Friday weekend while supplies last–and those last three words are key. During Prime Day, similar PS4 bundles were among the first deals to sell out, so if you have your eyes on this bundle, be ready to go when the deal goes live. As a Sony bundle, it should be available at all the major retailers beyond just Belk.

During Black Friday, Belk will have a variety of other deals, but in terms of gaming, nothing else is particularly noteworthy beyond the PS4 bundle (a Nintendo Switch “doorbuster” is being promoted for $300, for example). You can check out the full ad scan at BF Ads. In the meantime, stay tuned to GameSpot as we highlight all the best Black Friday deals leading up to and during the event.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/leaked-black-friday-ad-reveals-excellent-ps4-bundl/1100-6471034/

Modern Warfare Dev Addresses Highway Of Death, Waterboarding, And The Intent Of Its Story

The reboot of the Modern Warfare subseries in the Call of Duty franchise reworks much of the formula at a mechanical level; the result is something that plays genuinely different from most entries. And as narrative director Taylor Kurosaki puts it, gameplay and story go hand-in-hand. Modern Warfare’s single-player campaign, meanwhile, opts for a noticeably less bombastic tone, using parallels to real-world conflict and tragedy.

However, questions of whether or not these things were handled properly in-game comes with the territory–GameSpot editors Michael Higham and Tamoor Hussain sat down with Kurosaki for a long conversation about the controversial direction Modern Warfare’s campaign goes.

We talk about Farah’s waterboarding scene, the game’s use of the Highway of Death, the killing of those who walk the line between threat and non-combatant, and how Modern Warfare attempts to build empathy with those involved in these very real conflicts.

The following interview was edited for clarity and readability–you can also watch the video version above. Be warned, spoilers are ahead from this point on.

Michael Higham: Modern Warfare is very story-heavy, which is a bit different from a previous Call of Duty games, at least recently, but it seems that Infinity Ward went all-in on crafting a full story for this game. Why is that?

Taylor Kurosaki: Well, when we set out to sort of re-imagine this kind of branch of the Call of Duty tree, we not only used consultants, military consultants, cultural consultants, regional consultants, sort of for gameplay and mechanics, but we also used them as inspiration for the story. And as we like to say at Infinity Ward, you can’t really separate gameplay from narrative. They kind of go hand-in-hand and narrative enhances gameplay. It enhances the way that the player feels on the stick and good mechanics also enhance the narrative. So going all in was to go in on both, really.

Tamoor Hussain: I’m interested in Call of Duty as a franchise and the purpose of a narrative, even to you. It’s so many different things right now with so many developers working on it. It’s hard to get a good grasp on what the identity of the franchise is when it comes to storytelling. One Call of Duty is almost like a Michael Bay-style Hollywood blockbuster, and another one is trying to pull from real life events. When you come into writing a story, what was the purpose and what was the intent behind the narrative in Modern Warfare?

TK: I would step back and say, that Call of Duty is almost a genre now. It’s not just a franchise, right? We have so many different branches of the tree. And what Call of Duty means to me is, it’s interactive entertainment in the military genre. So for us, our inspiration was from real-world events, and the purpose of the narrative is, frankly, to build empathy. That’s what we’re trying to do. We want our players to have empathy for the characters they play alongside and play as.

When you’re looking at motion pictures or TV, you’re building empathy with a character that is on a screen, a character that is external to you. And we believe that one of the powers of interactive entertainment is that you can build empathy for a character, that you are literally walking, in this case, in the boots of. That is really the purpose of the narrative in these games.

Farah Karim plays a major role in the story, giving a perspective of someone who grew up around tragedy and conflict.

TH: How do you build empathy in these characters and with players when the game is so focused on the disposability of life and your input in that? You’re dispatching them at an incredibly quick pace and the identity, as you said, has changed so many different times. It’s not exactly known for being a franchise where you go to try and build empathy with characters? Those who come back year to year and treat this as a kind of like a yearly blockbuster franchise, how do you reach them? How do you think about those people when it comes to your narrative and it’s, especially when it’s a narrative where you’re discussing events and inspiration is pulled from the headlines?

TK: Again, I would look at Call of Duty more broadly than as a franchise. It now encompasses a lot of different takes on this sort of war genre in games. Now, for me and the team at Infinity Ward, the way we build empathy is, frankly, by putting characters under pressure. There’s no greater source of pressure than being in conflict zones, than being in war. And so, seeing characters overcome pressure and overcome obstacles in their life is the stuff that we all look for in storytelling, in general. There is no story without conflict.

If I have pressure in my life or I have an obstacle in my life, how am I going to overcome that? I can’t just do the same thing over and over and expect a different result. These characters are under this pressure. They have to kind of figure out a way to solve it and that’s sort of the point of kind of playing these games, kind of getting into the boots of these characters playing alongside heroes like Captain Price or new characters like Farah Karim and overcoming the obstacles that they face.

MH: Part of this reboot of Modern Warfare is touching on very sensitive subjects. There are controversial things built into Modern Warfare and I imagine y’all did that for a purpose. But there are going to be a lot of conversations about whether or not it was handled correctly. Do you feel like you and your team handled all those things correctly–all the things that you put into Modern Warfare narratively?

TK: I think that having a discussion about this stuff is very useful. We didn’t invent the subjects that you’re seeing in our game. We did painstaking research over years and years and these are the real-world scenarios that combat operators find themselves in, that local civilians on the ground find themselves in. So, our goals were twofold. One, [to portray] a Tier 1 operator who’s going into a combat zone, where the delineation of where it’s safe or where there’s conflict is blurred, where enemies don’t wear uniforms and don’t identify themselves as such. So you have imperfect intel, how are you expected to go into those areas and conduct yourself perfectly? That’s the burden that these combat operators face. And this was a theme that they thought we could convey and that was a goal for us. And again, to put the player in their shoes and figure out how they, with this imperfect intel, operate perfectly; it’s the quandaries, the burden of those operators.

But that’s not where we wanted to stop. There are people in the world who are living in conflict zones today who didn’t ask or choose to sign up, they didn’t choose to deploy somewhere over there, the conflict comes to their local town, their families, their communities. And we also wanted to build empathy with those characters that don’t have a choice and have to figure things out on the fly.

TH: With that in mind, do you feel a responsibility to actually say something about that? Having played a majority of the campaign, and as someone who grew up with those conflicts in mind, I don’t need to be told about them. They’ve touched my life in various ways. I’ve thought about these things since I was young. Perhaps it works for a few people, but in 2019 it’s not a “light bulb” moment for a lot of people. They understand that stuff wherever they are in the world, those conflicts are readily apparent. So, is there then a responsibility for Infinity Ward to, instead of just saying this exists, which is unnecessary because everyone knows it exists, to make a statement about it? The majority of the campaign I played didn’t seem to make a statement. What’s your stance on whether you should have made that statement or wherever you feel the need to make that statement?

TK: I think we’re making a tremendous statement about this. You talk about you knowing these conflicts exists and knowing these situations exist. I would argue that the majority of our player base does not have a background anywhere similar to a character like Farah.

And so for us to educate, to enlighten this player base about people like her, and again there are millions of people put in her position, I think is bringing awareness to something that’s sort of outside of the understanding of a lot of people. If it encourages them to look more things up or do more research, or again, build empathy with people whose backgrounds, cultures, and ways of life are dissimilar to their own, I think that’s a good thing.

TH: I suppose the follow-up to that is, you’re placing a lot of faith on people reading into that as something that has real-world implications. I don’t want to minimize the Call of Duty audience or paint them all with the same brush, but for the past few years they’ve at least been trained to treat all these things as fictional, kind of like constructs. Whereas, these are very real-world events. There are echoes of the Haditha massacre, and the Highway of Death; these were American atrocities that have been turned into Russian atrocities. For the average Call of Duty audience, are they going to be able to distinguish between the fact that this is something that really happened, that these are people that really exist and this is just a construct that a few game developers have created to be this blockbuster set-piece?

My argument would be, for people to make that connection, you would need to say ‘this is based on real-world events,’ or that these things are inspired by events to commemorate them in some way, as a way to create that line of what’s real.

TK: So, you know that they’re based on real-world events and yet you don’t give the player-base the credit. You’re sort of saying that the Call of Duty audience should be talked down to or things should be simplified or dumbed down. In fact, we have tons of research that the Call of Duty audience wants more accurate portrayals of conflict areas. They don’t want a dumbed-down experience. They want an experience where characters aren’t purely good or purely evil, where there is moral complexity involved. We’ve done a lot of research into this. So, for me, I like to speak up to my audience and I do believe that they are sophisticated enough to make the parallels.

When you mentioned the Highway of Death, if you, if you go back, I encourage you to go back and play start from the beginning of that mission, where you get the mission briefing. Farah talks about this location as the Highway of Death before the mission takes place. So the Highway of Death is not what came out of that mission. It was already that. And then if you look at the environmental storytelling, there’s already bombed out vehicles and all kinds of, you know, things that are relating to previous episodes and it’s even mentioned in there.

MH: You mention pulling from real-world events, but then having it make sense in the context of what you’re trying to do with Modern Warfare. Urzikstan is a fictional country, but you’re bringing in a real-world event into a fictional country. Do you feel okay with the fact that the Highway of Death, literally name-for-name of an American atrocity during the first Gulf War that was committed by Americans, has a mission briefing with Farah saying that what happened there was a Russian military terrorist attack? Do you feel like that was necessary? Are you okay with taking a real-world event but flipping the script in the same breath?

TK: I think you could probably find many instances of the words ‘highway of death’ being used in a lot of cases.

The reason why Urzikstan is a fictional country is because we are taking themes that we see played over and over again in the last 50 years in countries and locations all around the world. We’re not making assimilation of one particular country or one in particular conflict. These are themes that play out over and over again with a lot of the same players involved. We don’t portray any one side as good or bad in our game. There are American characters who sort of betray the trust of other characters in the story. There are Middle Easterners who kind of resort to extreme tactics that you wouldn’t think are sort of above board and, and there’s also characters that are from the same sort of region that, that you think are, are more morally just, same thing for Russian characters.

We have Russian antagonists and Russian heroes in this game. And again that was our goal. This is not some kind of propaganda or anything like that. This is reporting on what is happening in these conflict zones. To really break it down, these conflicts in the world today, these are proxy wars, super powers trying to gain influence in specific places. And the biggest victims of these proxy wars are the local people on the ground. I think that when you finish the campaign and look at it in its totality, that’s really what we’re trying to say here. I think that for people who are from a more privileged background or don’t live in close proximity to these conflict zones, they don’t think about the cost or the locals in these areas.

I think that this is a thing that we’re really building awareness for. When I was a kid, I learned a lot about stuff through things like Schoolhouse Rock, you know what I mean? I was singing songs and I was learning about real-world things, but in an entertaining fashion. And so I think that for people today, if we learn about some of these things, even while we’re engaged in an interactive experience, I think that it’s still valuable.

TH: How do you select the moments of gameplay that you use to tell a story? Because at a very fundamental level, you’re doing things like walking into a room, clearing it and almost taking out families just because they perceive you as a threat. There are gray areas where you’re trying to find The Wolf and there are men with guns, but there are also women who react, and kids who react to you bursting into a room. You instantly shoot who’s a threat and move on. And there are characters who mention that as a thing that’s kind of unfortunately but you have to do.

Then you have things like the gamification of waterboarding, a moment which a character is waterboarded and you’re looking left and right and pressing a button to breathe. And the Russian leader is on top of you saying, ‘Oh, you’re really good at this.’ There are these moments of dissonance where I’m like, this is one of the most horrific things, it’s basically a war crime and I’m partaking in it in this very gamey way. How do you kind of factor that in? How do you justify that?

Also, how’s that relationship with the gameplay team where you need to dictate, ‘we need a waterboarding scene’ and how do you set the tone for that? Because for me, that missed the mark. Obviously, waterboarding is an incredibly awful thing, but then it was just a confluence of moving left and right and turning your head for these safe zones to breath while having this character almost goading me. How do you strike that balance?

TK: You mentioned two things. You mentioned the clearing techniques in our new CQB [close quarters battle]. Again, this is the burden that these combat operators face. That people are not identifying themselves clearly, they don’t talk about good guys or bad guys. They talk about threats, unknowns. These are the concepts that are actually being used in these operations. And the game does tons of heuristics, constantly, when you’re playing in these areas. And if you take action against someone who has proven themselves to not be a threat to you or your team, you will fail. And it’s the game’s way of basically saying: that’s not becoming of a combat operator. But if someone demonstrates themselves as a threat to you, then you need to protect yourself. You need to protect your squad mates and complete this mission. That’s the metric there. And again, we spent a lot of time putting those heuristics into the game to try to read player intent.

In the same way that if you’re a combat operator and you acted in an unbecoming way, you might be court-martialed, you might be put in prison. The game has its own way of, kind of keeping you on the straight-and-narrow and we have tons of user test data that shows that our players care about the character they’re playing as and with, and they are trying their absolute best to do the right thing in these difficult circumstances.

And then your second question was about the waterboarding sequence and the gamification of it, as you put it. By that point in the campaign, you have played alongside Commander Farah Karim as a fully-fledged commander. You’ve also seen some of the more formative moments in her early life. So, for a player base that doesn’t have the same background as she does, they now know enough about her and have seen enough of it to have a better understanding of who she is and what she stands for.

There’s nothing in the game that compels you to play along and there’s nothing in the game that makes you gamify that moment as you say. The game doesn’t fail you, the game progress is regardless. We are giving our players a choice and we believe that most players know who she is and know that she would fight in that circumstance, and we know that she would resist and use whatever means necessary to gain an advantage over her captor. If your instinct in that moment is to sort of retreat within yourself, the game allows you to do that and progress regardless.

MH: There are a lot of traumatic moments in the campaign. One that sticks out to me is at the embassy in Urzikstan and The Butcher is behind glass. He kills someone’s father, the child runs away into smoke, he then shoots into the smoke, implying that The Butcher killed a child. And there are many moments that do touch on those sorts of things. Do you feel like you were able to draw the line properly? Do you feel like you went too far? Do you see all of that as necessary to hone in on the point that you’re trying to make with Modern Warfare?

TK: When we first started talking, we talked about the philosophy of making games; design, mechanics, and narrative being inextricably linked. You can’t make a story about something or say it’s about something and not have the player experience be about that thing. So, if we’re saying that the burden of a modern combat operator is that there are not always good choices, or there isn’t always a clear cut way forward, that they’re put in these no-win situations and they do their best, you can’t just have a veneer of a narrative wrapper on top of the game and not have the player experience that. Otherwise, those [design, mechanics, narrative] are sort of disconnected, and then you might as well just be making a movie and a little minigame. If the game is going to be about that thing, we walk the walk and we talk the talk.

Characters are what they do. They aren’t what they say they do. That is the reason for these moments in the game. If we’re making a game about the burden of these soldiers and the burden of these local fighters, then to not have those gameplay moments in the game decouples the narrative from the gameplay. Then you really got nothing.

MH: You mention that Modern Warfare is very character focused story and by the end of it, Captain Price forms his special task force. Having played through it to the end, I noticed how it’s weaving in things that we’ve seen in the original Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare 2, and it implies that there is more to be told.

You’re told to play Spec Ops to continue part of the story, but I know the team isn’t leaving it at that in terms of the story. So, is this really a reboot for the series and will we see the story of Captain Price and Task Force 141 again?

TK: We have big plans to continue this story and like we’ve said since we revealed the game, we’re calling it a reimagining, you could call it a reboot. The point is that, like Christopher Nolan’s Batman or Joker, or like Daniel Craig’s James Bond, the reimagining of those series were not beholden to the specific plot points of the originals. What they’re beholden to is the spirit of the originals. And so, us having Price in there and us referring to Task Force 141, we get to play with those ingredients.

But we want to make it clear to our fans to not try to connect the dots too much. This is not a prequel. Again, when you watch Quantum of Solace, Daniel Craig’s Bond doesn’t have to [abide by] Moonraker right? But Daniel Craig is quintessentially Bond. And I’d say that Barry Sloane is quintessentially Captain Price. And so yes, many more stories to tell in this universe.

from GameSpot – Game News https://www.gamespot.com/articles/modern-warfare-dev-addresses-highway-of-death-wate/1100-6471037/