When I first came back to the DBB to pimp the Retrovirus game, Merlin asked me if I had a stake in the game, and my honest reply was “no”. However, that has now changed, and I am here to declare my interest in the game is no longer simply as a player.
As of today, I have begun funding Retrovirus for the final three months of development, in order to achieve the team’s stated Kickstarter goals. My funding will permit the game editor and tools to be polished and released at the same time as the game. It is my hope that this simultaneous release will result in the game being more successful than it otherwise might be.
I have two motives for funding this development. First and quite importantly is to make a return on my investment, but equally and perhaps more importantly for me, is the opportunity to do what I can to perpetuate Descent-style gaming, and to try to actually DO something for the Descent community, past and present. The best and greatest fun I have ever had on the ‘Net was playing Descent 3, and I feel a strong sense of debt to the game, and the community which permitted and enhanced that strong sense of fun and enjoyment.
With these things in mind, I consider it very important the first true 6DOF game in 13 years (one heavily influenced by Descent) gets the best possible opportunity to do as well as it possibly can. I am delighted to be in a position where I can hopefully, make a difference.
My investment does not give me any right to dictate any aspect of the game or its content to the Cadenza team – something I am sure you will be extremely relieved to hear! I will see a couple of small perks though - I’ll be getting development builds of the game ahead of the public.
Plus, Dylan mentioned something about my Agent being invulnerable online...
I’ll report back here each time a new release is available, and I will continue to document the changes in the game over time. If you are not already aware, I am building and maintaining the official Retrovirus FAQ up at the Cadenza forums: http://cadenzainteractive.com/SolSurviv ... =15&t=1266
So, as a person who has a financial interest in the game, I think it’s important you all understand that I am not in any way un-biased on the issue, and it’s in the interests of openness and honesty I am declaring my involvement.
In the past I have severely bagged almost every attempt to build a new 6DOF game, and I think I even once stated it was impossible for any game company to make another truly 6DOF game, and promised to eat my hat if anyone managed the feat. I hope that you will forgive those mistaken assertions, and accept that my putting a large amount of my own money where my mouth is, adequately defines my dedication to 6DOF gaming and the Descent community.
It’s my most hopeful desire that what remains of the Descent community, and large numbers of old Descent players can and will enjoy Retrovirus, to the point where there’s more interest created for Descent itself, as well as a thriving new community developing around this new game. I suspect that community will largely be dominated, number wise, by traditional FPS players attracted to Retrovirus for its uniqueness in the market. In the best of all possible worlds these new players, along with the old Descent hardcore, will stick around for years, and play a wide range of mods, one of which, I am sure will be “Pure Descent”.
My feeling is that Retrovirus is the game which can achieve these pipe dreams, with its cutting edge engine, great visual effects, and superb new weapons – Retrovirus is sufficiently like Descent to make it very attractive, while the gameplay will go in new and challenging directions.
As a significant shareholder in the game, it is also my hope you will all tear off to Gamestop’s Impulse service, and pre-purchase the game (any day now!) at a discounted rate, and provide as much feedback as you can to the Cadenza team, as quickly as you can. This is your opportunity to really have an influence on the final game, as the development process is largely driven by feedback.
While feedback is very important to the team, I have come to understand they are very capable of taking problems and creating unique solutions to them.
The game will be released before Christmas this year.
Matt and Dylan at Cadenza have informed me that to modify the game so that it *IS* Descent will be very simple and straightforward using just the game tools, and a small amount of code. So, if you are still wedded to the idea of Pyros, Fusion cannon (or Gauss, or Megas, or Smarts, or whatever) then you can have it.
I hope some Descent-crazy gurus might actually achieve this, and keep the Descent dream alive for a few more years, yet. You never know; perhaps if Retrovirus is successful, it might prompt Interplay to commission Descent 4. Who knows? What I do know is that the future of 6DOF gaming looks much, much brighter than it did just a few months ago, and I am very proud and happy to be a part of it.