View Full Version : Goty!! Interview: Brute Force

07-26-2002, 09:59 PM


Friday 26th July 2002


We splash it all over with the developer of Brute Force, one of the key Xbox titles for 2002

17:50 Along with Blinx, Brute Force is one of the Xbox titles that Microsoft hopes we'll all be dribbling over by the end of the year. Well, that's if it makes it onto the shelves for Christmas, which we've been told it will do. Which is a good thing for us, because it's looking quite impressive.
A futuristic squad-based action title, Brute Force is a single- and multiplayer blaster that sees four distinct, super-elite characters packing mean firepower and grim determination and romping around sci-fi environments. Featuring one huge campaign that's made up from a number of challenging missions, the game will have you running amok in six different worlds, testing your nerve with numerous enemies, objectives and obstacles.

Seeing as Microsoft is touting Brute Force as a key title for Xbox, we wanted to find out a bit more about what's going to be on offer. So we fired of some questions to the title's producer Erin Roberts.

Can you just give us a brief outline of what Brute Force actually is?

Roberts: Brute Force is a futuristic squad-based, third-person shooter where you command a team of four elite and highly-specialized super-commandos.

What's the plot of the game?

Roberts: It's the beginning of the 24th century and an uneasy peace exists within the Hegemony, otherwise known as the Confederation of Allied Worlds. The Confed Navy protects the borders of the confederation from alien threats, but a much more secretive organization also exists whose job is to settle internal confederation disputes where the Navy has no mandate. This organization runs a number of highly proficient and lethal operations teams, who will use whatever means necessary to protect and maintain the Hegemony.

The player takes charge of the most elite of these squads, code-named Brute Force, which has been sent into the Ulysses System to investigate reports of espionage and unrest. What starts as a simple operation soon takes the entire Confederation to the brink of war.

In single-player you control a squad of four commandos. How does the team control work? For example, can you issue orders to team mates, or do you have to take control of one at a time?

Roberts: The game is set up so you have the choice of either taking instant control of any of the characters at any time, or of giving orders to the other characters from the character you are controlling. For instance, you could set up Flint, the team sniper, on raised ground, and then use her to order other characters to move forward, flush out the enemies, and pick them off from afar. Or you can control Tex, the heavy assault trooper of the squad, and run him right into the thick of things. How you use the differently-skilled team-mates will be very important in whether you are successful or not in each mission.

Can you tell us a bit about the environments we'll find ourselves in and the different worlds that will be in the game?

Roberts: There are six different worlds which you visit throughout the campaign. First is Ferix, a huge swamp and forest world, where the cities are built inside and around huge trees, which are connected together by a multitude of rope bridges. Caspian is a dry, desert-like planet, where human colonists have settled. Osirus is a volcanic moon around Caspian. The landscape is made up of rivers of lava and active volcanoes. Estuary is made up of one great ocean, with a few scattered islands, where remains of an ancient civilization lay ruined. Singe is a small unstable moon, which due to its predominantly molten surface is very dangerous to visit.

What sort of missions can we expect to undertake and how will we progress from one mission to the next?

Roberts: There are many different scenarios the player will be put into. There are rescue, espionage, scouting, assassination and just plain body count missions. You can decide to go in and shoot anything that moves, or work with the characters' strengths for a more intelligent mission play-through. The squad is based on an operations ship called the CNS Tejas. From here the squad gets their briefings, selects its equipment and is transported to the planet. Once a mission is over, it returns to its ops ship where it can re-fit and get ready for the next mission.

Will characters automatically get a load-out at the beginning of each mission, or will we be able to pick the weapons and equipment that we want to use?

Roberts: There is an equipment selection screen which allows the player to purchase which ever weapons and equipment the characters need. Everything costs money, so the more expensive items you get the less money you will have for other things. There is only a subset of the full equipment list available at the beginning of the game, as new prototypes become available later, or if the players find any alien technology they can use that also.

If you don't want to deal with the whole selection process, we also have a default load out which can be accepted to get the player straight into the action.

Combat is obviously going to be a big part of Brute Force, so what sort of weapons and protective equipment can we expect to see?

Roberts: There are over 30 different types of weapons and equipment in the game. We have all the usual weapons you'd expect such as sniper rifles, assault rifles, laser weapons, rocket launchers. But we also have new weapon types such as the bio rifle, which will not only kill the character it hits, but when that character blows up, other characters who are hit by the explosion have a chance of getting infected and blowing up themselves. It's a great weapon for a room full of enemies. We also have items such as the organic sensor. While wearing these you can see any life forms through deep fog or even solid objects. If you use the particle rifle (which can shoot through solid objects), you can see enemies behind a wall and kill them from another room. We also have four upgrades in armour types....

Characters' skills and abilities will improve as the game is played. Can you tell us more about this feature?

Roberts: Characters start with base skills which can only be sustained as long as their stamina lasts. As they go up in experience, they gain more stamina, and so can perform their skills for longer periods of time. For instance, at the beginning of the game Hawk (Scout) can only stay cloaked for a short period of time. By the end of the game she will be able to cover much larger distances while cloaked. This function is automated, the player never has to assign actual skill points.

What multiplayer modes are you including, and will these be split-screen affairs or will we be able to link Xbox consoles together?

Roberts: Brute Force makes no distinction between single and multiplayer. The campaign can be played all the way through either by one, two, three or four people. For instance, you could be halfway through the fourth mission playing by yourself, when a friend arrives. At this point you don't have to start a new game, just plug in another controller, press start and the screen will split and your friend will be controlling one of the available squad characters. If some time later your friend leaves, the screen will un-split and you are back to controlling all four characters - it's as easy as that. We also have several Deathmatch modes including Squad Deathmatch - you pit your squads against each other - single-player Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch. We don't support linked play.

The movies and screenshots we've seen so far suggest that Brute Force is going to be a real graphical treat to behold. Can you confirm with us that the stuff we've seen so far is from actual gameplay?

Roberts: Every screenshot we've sent out is actual gameplay. The October movie of the squad on the Refinery was also gameplay. There are some CGI flicks included in some of the movies we've made lately (for E3), but it is quite obvious which are which.

Why should we be getting excited about Brute Force?

Roberts: We're trying to deliver a unique gameplay experience set in incredibly diverse environments. Rather then play one character, we wanted to give the player four characters with strong personalities. We want players to learn how to use the characters, and travel the same journey they do as the story unfolds. We feel we are pushing the hardware to its limits, we feel we are going to deliver a really engrossing game which not only pushes story, visuals and technology, but also gameplay.

Roberts: Every screenshot we've sent out is actual gameplay.



07-26-2002, 10:31 PM
30 different types of weapons and equipments!!!!!!! Sweet.

07-26-2002, 10:38 PM
4 player co-op. Cool.

Doesn't support linked play. that blows.

No Fear 23
07-26-2002, 11:29 PM
holy *****!

that game gets better everytime i read aobut it. im gonan pick this one up when it comes out.

l Maximus l
07-26-2002, 11:43 PM
I've been anticipating this game ever since I saw the first screenshot. This is going to be a game to get if you are a fan of shooters.

But, I must say, I am extremely disappointed that it doesn't have System Link play. That hugs some serious ass. :(

I mean, think of it this way: Halo is simply a bad ass game. But, honestly...how often does anyone play the Campaign mode in comparison to it's multi-player function? I mean, once I beat Halo a few times, I haven't even touched the Campaign mode...it's pretty much been multi-player via XBConnect from then to now. I think that it's a big mistake not to add an expansive multi-player deathmatch feature to Brute Force via System Link. If they did, this game could have possibly toppled Halo's success. :)

No Fear 23
07-27-2002, 10:44 PM
Originally posted by Maximus-XBA
I think that it's a big mistake not to add an expansive multi-player deathmatch feature to Brute Force via System Link. If they did, this game could have possibly toppled Halo's success. :)

tru dat maxy:)