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View Full Version : Steel Battalion Coming to Xbox Live



thatroger
02-12-2003, 07:00 PM
Computer and Video Games (http://www.computerandvideogames.com/r/?page=http://www.computerandvideogames.com/news/news_story.php(que)id=87075)

For the lazy out there.

"15:31 Unless you've been camping out in a bush for the last nine months, you should now all about Capcom's Steel Battalion. But, just in case you've been giving the local flora a bit of loving, the Xbox game's an action affair that presents us with a "realistic" vision of near-future battlefields, players piloting massive vertical tanks and laying waste to enemies and structures. And, of course, it's got a stonking great controller.
While our gaming pals across the waters are already grappling with numerous knobs, buttons, switches, foot pedals, joysticks and running amok in Vertical Tanks (VTs as they're known in the trade), us UK and European folk have yet to sample Steel Battalion wares. March 28 is the date when you'll get that sampling chance; although the 129.99 price point may well put it out the reach of many.

Anyway, with the UK and European launch date slowly approaching, Microsoft recently saw fit to let us pick the brain of Steel Battalion producer Atsushi Inaba in a round-table interview. Having previously spoken to Inaba-san about the game at length at X02, we took the opportunity, amidst a flurry of questions, to try and wheedle out some information on plans for Xbox Live.

Why did you choose Xbox for Steel Battalion, and not, say, PS2?

Inaba: When I started development of the game two years ago, there was no Xbox or GameCube, only PS2. The prototype of the game was done on PS2, but graphically I just wasn't happy with it visually. The PS2 is good for games with science fiction-style graphics, Armoured Core, for example, but just didn't capture the image that I wanted to present - that of the battlefield, with dust, noise and the like.

When Xbox arrived, it was tested out, and I decided that Steel Battalion would be developed on that console.

How, specifically, has the Xbox helped you realise your vision for Steel Battalion?

Inaba: The Xbox hardware is the most powerful console hardware available, allowing for graphics that you could never have on other consoles. Also, I should mention that Microsoft's technical support proved invaluable.

The game's realisation was mainly down to these two factors.

You said in a previous interview that the game will appeal to hardcore gamers and gamers who want to take in-game experience to the next level. But, because of the controller, the game has also been covered in lifestyle and mainstream press - the controller being described as a must-have gadget. Did you ever envisage the game appealing to this kind of gadget-loving audience?

Inaba: Yes, that's right. It was announced at X02 that the title was for hardcore gamers and for he or she who wanted to take their gaming experiences to the next level. But this reaction from the mainstream press that you're talking about is already happening in Japan.

Yes the game looks hard and it looks complicated, and with the controller as well there's obviously the appeal for the hardcore gamer. But, on the other hand, the game should also appeal to those interested in robots or mechanical things, for example; or perhaps anyone interested in aeroplanes and ****pits, because of the controller.

It's no surprise to me that the market is showing that the game is proving interesting to a range of consumers, not just dedicated gamers.

You've also stated that you're planning to do an Xbox Live version of the game... ?

Inaba: Yes, an online version will be available.

Will that be in a sequel or will we get the current game with online play added?

Inaba: There will be an additional disk released for the original game. So, anyone who has the original game, with the controller, and the extra disk, will be able to play Steel Battalion on Xbox Live.

What game modes can we expect to see in Steel Battalion online?

Inaba: No disclosure at the moment [laughs]. This will be revealed in a worldwide announcement at a later date.

Did you always want online play included from the beginning, or was it later on in development that you decided that you'd like to see it incorporated?

Inaba: I had an image or idea of what Steel Battalion online would be at a very early stage, and it's something I've given a lot of thought to.

So what made you decide to give us singleplayer-only to start with, and then add online capability at a later date? Why not provide both in one package?

Inaba: After thinking about online play, I decided to go with singleplayer-only first because... Well, if you had no driving license, let's say, and entered a race, you'd never win when pitted against other experts. It wouldn't be enjoyable.

Steel Battalion online is similar. If you go into a battle knowing nothing about how to control the Vertical Tank, there's not going to be any sort of game. I felt that it was more important to allow people to master the controls of the VT [Vertical Tank] first, so that online multiplayer will be enjoyable.

Stuart Bishop "

I don't think this was posted before. I did a quick check before hand to make sure but I could be wrong. Anyway it'll still be out of my league unless it comes down in price.

Reclaimer
02-12-2003, 07:37 PM
That's pretty cool. I wish I can get my hands on that game. I have yet to see it. Only on TV during a brief game review. It looks so freaking cool.

bbchs_trash
02-12-2003, 07:53 PM
Hard to find and OXM said that it would be online in like December... when SB2 comes out...

carlbme
02-12-2003, 10:24 PM
This only makes me want to find this somewhere even more now.

Snake Eyez
02-13-2003, 12:00 AM
I have a classmate that ordered the game and is supposed to receive it by the end of March. But we all know how that goes.

Unreal
02-13-2003, 07:59 AM
I have not played the game in over a month. I guess I should get back to it for when the LIVE update is released.

Bravo_2
02-13-2003, 12:46 PM
I'm buying it now.