Osana arvioprosessia Gamereactor pääsi haastattelemaan Valven Robin Walkeria ja Brad Kinleya. Miksi Valve päätti tehdä VR-peli Half-Life: Alyxin, eikä perinteistä odotettua Half-Life 3: -peliä? Ja miksi uuden Half-Life-pelin tekemisessä kesti niin kauan?
Alun perin Half-Lifen tarkoituksena oli tutkia uudenlaisia keinoja kertoa tarinoita FPS-pelissä. Lisäksi tarkoituksena oli leikkiä fysiikkamallinnuksen kanssa. Toisin sanoen Valve halusi haastaa itsensä, eikä ainoastaan miellyttää faneja tai tehdä rahaa.
"We started building that [Half-Life] because at the time we thought there was an opportunity around first-person shooters to do something more narratively than had been done before."
Building on this he goes on to talk about what then gave them their motivation for Half-Life 2 by explaining how there "was an opportunity to go deeper [into the characters] and drive the narrative forward that way. And the other thing was, of course, the emergence of physics engines."
Half-Life: Alyx nousi juuri tästä samasta innosta: halu tehdä jotain uutta ja outoa. Siksi nimenomaan VR-peli eikä suinkaan sitä kaikkien haluamaa Half-Life 3 -peliä.
"The problem we ran into after the Half-Life 2 episodes, as we tried to build more Half-Life, was we kept searching for a hook and it's really hard to build a Half-Life game without one. We would start to build one and in the process search for a hook and that's a scary and hard problem to solve because you have to face the prospect that you could do a year of work and then at the end of it still have nothing.
"So when Half-Life: Alyx started it wasn't because we wanted to build a Half-Life game, it started because we wanted to build a VR game. And we start by doing what we always do, which is spending time using our existing IPs and codebases to try and explore a design space as quickly as possible. Pretty quickly we found out Half-Life was the one that worked best, so we ran with that."
"The difference working on this [Alyx] compared to previous Half-Life experiments was significant. You could have someone play that prototype and they would leave and know exactly what it was that we were trying to do and then start to write code or make art assets immediately because we just had to take everything that works in Half-Life and figure out how it has to mutate, change, and improve in VR. That's a much less scary problem than: go find some novel idea, that we don't know what is yet."
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