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Robin Hood Interview


We thank Lars Batista CEO from Cinemaware, Inc.

Italian Version

IGZ. I'd like to know the major differences between Defender Of The Crown and DOTC: Robin Hood.

LB. The most notable difference between the two, aside from the switch to 3D graphics, is the use of Robin Hood as the main character. This allows us the freedom to tell a story with RH: DOTC - which is something the first game lacked in some regard. Robin is widely known around the world and allows us to present him to gamers in a setting and style like never seen before.Other major differences are the introduction of numerous NEW action-sequences: mace battle, archery for tournaments, castle defense and mounted archery. Mace battle allows you to square off against your joust opponent in close-quarters mace combat. Mace combat occurs immediately after a joust where the loser can choose to go "double or nothing" against the victor in an attempt to win back the land or fame that was lost in joust.Castle defense requires the player to defend their castle against sieging armies. If you can attack a castle, you're going to have to defend your own. Mounted archery, on the other hand, will place you on horseback through a high-speed chase in the forest as you attempt to catch fleeing caravans, spies, etc. We are, however, sticking to the basic Cinemaware design philosophy that made the company successful in the first place - we're making a game that's easy to pick up and play and will appeal to a wide audience of gamers.

IGZ. The siege factor will be managed like actual RTS titles?

LB. Like all of the original action sequences, Siege has taken an evolutionary step forward. Castles (which now can be upgraded several levels) contain a number of buildings (targets) inside whose destruction impacts the opposing army. The player is able to select which castle target he wants to destroy from a number of available selections (Knight stables, Footmen barracks, etc.). He then begins the process of launching boulders and Greek fire in an attempt to take out the castle's wall and destroy the targets, which lie behind these walls. Now, however, your siege crew is at risk as enemy archers fill the walls as you commence your siege and fire on you. You'll have to manage the safety of your men while constantly barraging the enemy castle wall to open a hole for your siege army to charge.

IGZ. Reading the name of Robin Hood I presume there will be different challenges during tournaments. I believe we will see many arrows flying in the air. :)

LB. As mentioned above, there are quite a few new archery action-sequences. One of the new ones, Archery for Tournaments, will require the player to fill the shoes of the legendary marksman and fire arrows at various targets, each ranging in distance and therefore, difficulty. As the rounds wind down there will only be two contestants left - they both fire on the same target to prove their superiority. This allows you to "split" the arrow as in the legend (providing that you're good enough to do it)

IGZ. We will manage with the classical Robin Hood legend or we will meet something different in the game?

LB. Our goal is a blend between the classic legends and yet we plan to update the characters to reflect the tastes of a modern gaming audience - gone are the bright green tights, for example. Each major character will be present in Robin Hood: Defender of the Crown, but we're also going to be presenting them in their own unique fashion. We're still in the process of designing the new characters, so I can't tell you much more than that. ;)

IGZ. Will we be able to steal gold from rich travelers or enemy castles?

LB. OF COURSE! As Robin you're going to have the ability to "relieve" the rich of their excess "baggage." There are going to be multiple action-sequences to help you accomplish this. Mounted Archery (as described above) will be used sometimes, as will the sword fighting action sequence - sometimes you'll go from one to the other before you win your prize. Our engine allows us the luxury of dynamically stringing action-sequences together to create longer, more in-depth goals, etc.

IGZ. There will be the reputation factor?

LB. Robin has a fame attribute that affects him on many levels. The higher your fame is the more recruits you can recruit; other lords are likely to ally with you, etc. A low fame, on the other hand, will not necessarily harm the player but will limit their options as they play through RH:DotC.

IGZ. What about multiplayer support?

LB. Morgan Gray, our game designer, has just finished the design for the single player experience and will soon be working on how to properly implement multiplayer in Robin Hood: Defender of the Crown. It's important to all of us here that multiplayer does not feel "tacked" onto the rest of the game and that it can stand on its own as a complement to the single player game.

IGZ. I'd like to know the most played game at Cinemaware (old ones too obviously).

LB. Of the Cinemaware titles: Defender of the Crown of course! We're looking at it almost daily at this point to ensure that the core structure and design does not stray. Outside of the Cinemaware franchises, there's been quite a bit of Black and White, Counterstrike, and Fallout Tactics on the PC. Console wise, I've seen Soul Calibur getting its share of playtime as well as Tony Hawk 2, Virtua Tennis (we love Dreamcast!) and a few others. When we're not making games, we're playing them.