View Full Version : Perfect Dark Zero Developer Interview

10-25-05, 10:25 AM
Some insight into the upcoming PDZ for X360, which has little info available about it:

Rare on Perfect Dark Zero

Joanna Dark's universe is set to expand with Perfect Dark Zero™. We cornered the game's development team at Rare® and got some details on the game's A.I., vehicles, weapons, and other stealthy treats.

Xbox.com: Why a prequel?

PDZ Team: We wanted to find out more about Joanna. Where did she come from? How did she turn into this "perfect" agent? What makes her tick? Setting the game a few years prior to Perfect Dark meant we could ground the universe better and keep Jo on planet Earth. It also meant we could use weapons inspired by those in the real world, to balance against the high-tech hardware available to Jo, her allies, and enemies.

Xbox.com: What elevates Perfect Dark Zero above standard first-person shooter fare? Are there stealth elements, A.I. teammates, vehicles?

PDZ Team: All of the above and a lot more. Anyone familiar with the Nintendo 64 title will have an idea of the kind of variety to expect.

Take Stealth, for instance. The game has many opportunities to be stealthy, with a few new moves introduced to assist this. Ultimately, the choice is the player's: Be stealthy or grab the biggest weapon you own, but you might have to deal with the consequences of not being stealthy.

A.I. Teammates are also there to assist a player who plays on his own, and some interesting things happen when another human joins in to help.

Vehicles feature heavily. Take the jetpack (a single user exoskeleton armed with twin guns having both air and ground capabilities). Plug away at the main body, target the weaker but harder-to-hit wings, or go straight for the pilot. Those are the options presented when in combat against a jetpack.

There are two types of multiplayer experience. If you want a more arcade-like multiplayer experience, then Deathmatch is for you. A tense tactical multiplayer is catered for in our DarkOps mode.

We have really striven hard for replay-ability. We wanted to give players a compelling reason to play story mode again and again. Multiple ways to achieve goals on the levels enhances this. We're not going to say how yet, but Xbox Live™ plays a big part.

Xbox.com: Will Elvis, everyone's favorite mischievous alien, make a cameo?

PDZ Team: You never know!

Xbox.com: What amount of time elapses between this game and the original title? What is the state of the world in this prequel versus the original? Can we look forward to more subtle conspiracy-laden story, or is the conflict more out in the open?

PDZ Team: PDZ is set three years before the original. It's business as usual: Giant corporations fight for control of the planet, working to achieve their shadowy objectives by any means necessary. Jo is thrown into this world of intrigue and conspiracy and meets many of the characters andorganizations in the Perfect Dark universe for the first time. There are plenty of links to the original game, but because PDZ is an origin story, just like the Spider-Man movie, new players won't miss out on a thing. So yes, there's plenty of the cloak and dagger stuff, but that doesn't meant there can't be an explosion or two along the way.

Xbox.com: Can you give us a glimpse into some gameplay elements that weren't available in the first game, but are exclusive to Perfect Dark Zero?

PDZ Team: Here are two to start with ... The Cover move allows player to be stealthy and see what's 'round the corner before deciding to jump 'round it. The Combat Roll move adds a new element to the combat. You can dive out of the way of enemy fire, but you're more vulnerable and cannot fire.

Xbox.com: Halo® 2 introduced Web-integration and the matchmaking service for its online component. What sort of Xbox Live functionality will PDZ offer that will change the way we look at online gaming?

PDZ Team: Player choice is now greater than ever. If you want to play on your own, that's great. And up to four players can play from a single machine locally or over Xbox Live. If human opposition is not your cup of tea, then add some bots that work both locally and over Xbox Live.There's also a few more things we're going to reveal at a later date.

Xbox.com: Other than throwing waves of deadlier enemies at the player, how does Perfect Dark Zero offer a more organic challenge when switching from the easier difficulty settings?

PDZ Team: The difficulty levels are Agent, Secret Agent, and Perfect Agent. The player has more objectives on the harder difficulty settings. These aren't just "do an extra thing"; they make sections play totally differently. Someone going from Agent (easy) onto Secret Agent (medium) difficulty will get to an area and find that they cannot play that section the same way. They need to find a different solution to deal with the problems that are there.When the player has finished a level, they can go back and play the level on the same difficulty and the experience will have changed. An example would be when you play the level on Agent (easy), get to a section with security cameras, memorize where they are, finish the level, and try it again. On the original, you would know where the cameras are, and then you could blast 'round the corner knowing you were safe. Not so on PDZ, but that's where the Cover move comes in handy!

Xbox.com: Perfect Dark was famous for having some of the coolest and most dynamic weaponry and gadgets ever seen. Can you give us a couple tidbits about new weapons and their unique abilities? Could you give us some dirt on your personal favorite new gadget and/or weapon?

PDZ Team: Here are five out of the 26 weapons in the game, all of which have secondaries that add new gameplay elements to the mix.

The Phantom: The weapon of choice for stealth fanatics. It's an energy weapon with a secondary that allows you to cloak. It's a shame it needs to de-cloak to fire.

The Laptop Gun: For tacticians. Throw this down and it turns into a sentry gun that shoots at enemy players. Put it down in a clever spot to reap the rewards.

The RCP-90: For the paranoid. The secondary activates the threat detector mode, which highlights enemies (even cloaked ones) and hostile targets as red and friendlies as green. A cunning player can also use this to reprogram hostile enemy weapons such as the sentry gun.

The Shockwave Rifle: A scout's dream. It's a sniper rifle with the powerful ability to see through walls, even revealing the skeletons of enemies. Line an unsuspecting enemy up as they come 'round the corner and—blam!

The Psychosis Pistol: Loved by the truly evil. Mess with the minds of your opponents and turn enemies against each other.

Cool weapons!!!

10-25-05, 10:34 AM
The names of the guns sound pretty silly, but I can't wait to play it!