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Translated interview

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  • Translated interview

    For those that didn't see this, below is a translated interview from Jan.

    Just finished a translation of January's interview with Jan Pražák and Ivan Buchta from BIS that just surfaced:

    Originally published by Vladimír Nagl on January 1, 2009

    The release of the most anticipated Czech action game called ArmA 2 is unstoppably closing in. Hordes of fans from both the 1st game and the older Operation Flashpoint are hungry for information. And we have some! After detailed preview we offer you an interview explaining some small misinterpretations. PR manager Jan Prazak and lead designer Ivan Buchta were answering our inquisitive questions.

    Are you planning a Czech dubbing or will the forces of each state have their own language and the game will offer subtitles?

    Each side in ArmA 2 uses its own language: Russians will speak Russian, Americans English and Chernorussian locals Chernorussian. ArmA 2 will for sure come out with Czech localization, but the correct understanding of different sides of the conflict plays a part of the story, so we don't consider a complete translation. The interface and subtitles will of course be translated to Czech, though.

    Are the movement animation in the last video final or still work-in-progress? If so how much final they are?

    Right now there is already a few thousands of animations for different parts of character movement and more are added daily. We are trying to improve the current animations and add some new too. Most of them are made in our Motion Capture studio, which is also used by professional movie studios for stunts. At this time we are, for example, working on animations for crossing over obstacles; We want them to look good, but not to unnecessary hold the players back. There still will be a lot of changes before the release.

    How much did the flight model for helicopters or planes change?

    Personally I consider the helicopter flight model as good. As a fan of flight simulators and a real pilot I approve the balance between real behavior and simplified simulation. It is not as hard to learn to pilot those vehicles is not so hard as in real life, but it still does require some training.
    In ArmA 2 we again improved the flight model and aside from some fixes (small efficiency of the rudder) we will introduce a whole new simulation of VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) such as, for example, V-22 Osprey or F-35 use and which the AI is fully capable of using too.

    How much did the vehicle behavior and handling change?

    The main difference in vehicle behavior is larger count of gun positions, but the movement physics were changed too. Our attention is also aimed at the behavior of AI drivers - you have an area of 225km^2 which AI can freely travel through with various types of roads, surface, terrain shapes and various types of build-up areas.

    Will the movement speed of a unit be influenced by the gear it carries?

    That mainly depends on the mode the unit moves in and how long it uses physically exhausting movement (sprint, rolling on the ground). Complex simulation of weight is not that important for playing and adding such feature would require more work on AI, which is complicated as it is, which we would need to "teach" how to rest and wait for each other.

    Will the AI still be able to see through bushes and fallen trees and therefore have an edge over the living players?

    The fact that AI in ArmA can see through leafs and bushes is a sort of an urban myth. Every tree, every bush and even grass has an invisible part of a model which defines a vision barrier for the AI. Usually this model mainly covers the log and dense parts of the overgrowth, with less dense parts having minimum of it.
    On the other hand our AI doesn't have only sight, but also hearing. If you give yourself out while relocating by, for example, fast spring or even gunfire not even the densest bush will save you. And because the AI knows how to use suppressing fire it is possible it will shoot at you without having a visual sight, just as a human player would do. Another myth is you can't hide in tall grass, which you of course can. But again you have to lay without a single movement or a shot, otherwise you'll give your position away.

    How much will be the editor expanded with functions?

    We didn't want to really change the GUI of the editor. Even though there are some important improvements, like, for example, more transparent sorting of insert-able objects and units. More categories were added and a sorting by 5 armed factions of the game. Another improvement are the so-called modules, adding more advanced elements into the mission. After adding a single object into the mission it can become richer of, for example, villagers in the villages. Similarly you may add modules for first aid, carrying of wounded, command interface for commanding whole groups and many other features.
    It very simplifies work and even without knowledge of the scripting language you can create very complex and diverse missions.

    Are you planing to release actualized tools for addon creation with the game or will the addon makers have to wait a bit?

    We will of course release tools for model and environment creation for ArmA 2 as soon after the release as possible.
    I can't tell you any exact date though, as this depends on quite a lot of factors.

    Will ArmA 2 be released at the same time across the globe or as with ArmA separately by various distributors and in different, more bug-free, versions? Will the game be available on after release?

    Just as ArmA, ArmA 2 will be released by different distributors according to their territories, therefore the exact release dates are not only our responsibility. We are focusing on testing already in the alpha stages and the game will also come though thorough beta-test, therefore the situation with various versions of ArmA on sale should not repeat. Downloadable version through SprocketIdea will for sure be released, but the exact date is not yet set.

    Is BIS planning any special actions (competitions, workshops) for the community (both for the players and developers) or at least some support for them?

    Of course. We are preparing some contests, but lets keep them as a surprise.
    Regarding the support, I dare to say you hardly find a developer (or publisher) which would be so devoted to its community. It's not just the development tools, wiki and official forums, but we're also in regular contact with fan sites and development groups. It's not secret that quite a number of fans of our previous games work on ArmA 2, be it as new employees or external workers.

    If the game sells well are you planning to support the community by further addons or datadiscs as with OFP and ArmA?

    We firmly believe in ArmA 2's success and if our hopes are fulfilled a datadisc will follow very soon.
    However, at this time I cannot guarantee anything for 100%.

    What will be the recommended configuration for ArmA 2?

    You can find the recommended configuration on the official web at Very important factor for smooth play will this time be a multi-core CPU. A good reference could be Alza Ruby (^1) configuration which we let journalists play on this (200 October at ArmA2 Boot Camp action.

    Official release date?

    The first quarter of 2009 is still valid, but there could be a slight delay, as we want to release a quality game without unnecessary bugs. It also depends on consideration of our publishers.

    Did you work any closely with army forces or are all weapon sounds and models taken from the previous games?

    No sound nor model is used from the previous games. While you might see the same type of a weapon it is a whole new model with newer technology of surface, new textures, just as any other models. Regarding sounds, ArmA 2 will present a whole new technology. For example vehicles no longer use only one sample of sound, but they have separate samples for starting, idling, different engine torque and so on. We also use different samples for the interior and exterior sounds or surround orientation of the sound. For example when a jet flies over your head in ArmA 2 it's really an experience.

    How long have you been working on ArmA 2?
    The work began practically after the release of ArmA: Queen's Gambit datadisc, even though some some models come from the original project of Game 2 or the military simulation VBS 2.

    Will the release of ArmA 2 on consoles have some time delays?
    Unfortunately, we cannot provide any information regarding the release of ArmA 2 on consoles.

    How many people were working on the game?

    A much larger team works on ArmA 2 then on the previous game. It's tens of people plus some more Czech development teams under IDEA-Games. We believe that it will be clearly visible on the new game.

    Do you think ArmA 2 will find the same player base as Operation Flashpoint?

    Well, depending on the fact that our community is still very active and moved over to also creating for the previous ArmA: Armed Assault we are sure we can expect similar interest in ArmA 2, maybe even bigger. Of course we will provide our community with updated tools and enough of information. It is interesting that even though creation of addons today is much more exhausting - models are more complicated and complex, technology is more complicated - every day more and more addons, modifications, missions and maps are released. Plus, the possibilities of the game and the engine will again be expanded and more interesting with ArmA 2.

    Your future plans?
    We'd rather keep the discussion about our future plans to after ArmA 2's release

    Jan Pražák - PR Manager and Ivan Buchta - Lead designer
    Bohemia Interactive


    Alza Ruby:

    * AMD Phenom 9650 X4 Quad-Core, 2.3GHz
    * 4GB (KIT 2x2GB) DDR2 1066MHz PC8500 CL5-5-5-18 OCZ Platinum Edition XTC
    * SAPPHIRE HD 4850 Toxic, 512MB DDR3
    * SEAGATE Barracuda 7200.11 500GB


    * *

    Stoop and you'll be stepped on; stand tall and you'll be shot at.

    -Carlos A. Urbizo-

  • #2
    Re: Translated interview

    Yes, Deadfast translated that :)

    Playername Sparks444 in BF2


    • #3
      Re: Translated interview

      Official release date?

      The first quarter of 2009 is still valid, but there could be a slight delay, as we want to release a quality game without unnecessary bugs. It also depends on consideration of our publishers.
      A slight delay could be anything, but atleast they are focusing on bug fixing. I assume by "consideration of our publishers" they mean tactis, perhaps they'll release to OFP: DR to compete, or after so they don't risk being overshadowed.




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