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3.1 Behind the Scenes
An Interview with the Syndicate development team:
Mattias Snygg, Viljar Sommerbakk, and Rickard Johansson
1. What challenges did you face in updating Syndicate to a next gen console while retaining the feel/theme of the original?
VILJAR/RICKARD: The Persuadertron ended up causing some serious head scratching. In a first-person game you canít have 20 NPCs milling around you, like you could in the isometric version. Instead, we ended up being able to persuade a maximum of two NPCs (depending on how fast the player manages the energy gain in combat). Another issue relating to the Persuadertron was what to do with civilians. Civilians were expendable in the old Syndicate, but they also served a purpose.
In our game, they are expendable, but donít serve a gameplay purpose per se. However, it is interesting to see how players deal with civilians, if they try to avoid shooting them or if they donít care and write them off as collateral damage. These choices have some impact on the Trophy and Achievement unlocks within the game.
Another challenge was to portray the mayhem of combat that initially came out of the isometric gameplay. The tactical choices given to the player by customizing each of the four Agents now had to be incorporated in a single player-controlled character.
This new tactical layer consists of the expanding set of applications, the environment breaches and the Dart overlay mode.
It was important to make these features easy enough to use, so they could help turn the combat and allow the player to make split-second decisions. We wanted all of these to be integral lifesavers, available when the player needed them the most.
2. Why did you decide to go with a single-player campaign and a co-op campaign?
VILJAR/RICKARD: The single-player campaign gave us the means to better provide depth to a story. It also allowed us to get into the head of an Agent and teach the player a new type of FPS gameplay, working within a controlled environment...