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14-08-08, 05:57
Aus dem Studio in Montreal erreichte uns dieses ausführliche Q&A Interview mit Ban Mattes.
Viel Spaß!

PART 1 – Intro to Prince of Persia

Could you introduce yourself and explain your role in the project?
I'm Ben Mattes, producer of Prince of Persia.

Who is in charge of the development?
Ubisoft Montreal Studio is developing the next gen versions. Most of the core creative team has worked on the previous Prince of Persia trilogy so they know the franchise by heart. The DS title is in the hands of the Ubisoft Casablanca studio.

How is it linked with previous Prince of Persia? Is having played to Prince of Persia the Two Thrones (or the 3 previous episodes) mandatory to fully understand the storyline?
Beginning with Jordan Mechner's first Prince of Persia game back in 1989 to Ubisoft's Prince of Persia Sands of Time trilogy, the Prince of Persia brand is like a collection of fantastic tales, drawing inspiration from the Arabian Nights stories. Possibilities for enticing storylines and characters are endless with such a rich, colorful, shape shifting and magical universe. So there are as many stories of the Prince as there are many versions of the Prince himself - they all co-exist, they all share prodigious abilities and a liking for dauntless adventures and trouble.

With Ubisoft's new Prince of Persia video game, we are opening a new chapter in the Prince of Persia universe with a new story and a new Prince. Therefore having played the previous episodes isn't necessary to understand the storyline.

What is the storyline of the game?
Driven by envy and hatred, Ahriman spread Darkness in the world, corrupting the hearts of men and unleashing a dark substance which physically contaminates the land and the skies: the Corruption. When Ormazd finally acted to stop his brother, he chose to destroy Ahriman's servants, the Corrupted, one by one. When at last only a few of Ahriman's puppets remained, Ormazd captured them and pulled them into the Tree of Life. With the remaining Corrupted sealed inside the Tree, Ahriman found himself tethered to the trap unable to break his connection with his dark servants. Concentrating all his power, Ormazd forced what remained of his brother into the Tree, locking Ahriman inside for all eternity. Ormazd gave care of the Tree of Life to his chosen few, the Ahuras. Now, many years after the war, Ahriman is plotting a way to escape...

Transported to a land of myth and legend, our Hero finds himself caught up in an epic battle between the primal forces of light and darkness: the God of Light, Ormazd, versus his brother Ahriman, the God of Darkness. Our Hero arrives just in time to witness the destruction of the legendary Tree of Life – an act which threatens to plunge the entire world into eternal darkness.

The Prince will have to stop the rise of the ancient destructive God, Ahriman.

The game has a very different art style than previous Prince of Persia. Why did you change the art direction?
The new Prince of Persia game features a brand-new Illustrative art style never before seen that is very graphical. We are lucky enough to have one of the most talented team of concept artists in the industry. Prince of Persia fans have always been very passionate about their work. So this time, we wanted to remain very close to their 2D concept arts, keeping the essence of their artworks in the 3D world.

Next-gen tools help us create a game which has a unique visual identity without sacrificing art to technology, which is often the case in video games. The Prince of Persia universe is so rich and special that it would be a shame to picture it in a photorealistic way. It calls for fantasy and almost poetry to be true to its Arabian Night origins.

PART 2 – Prince and Elika

What have been your inspirations to design this new Prince?
We wanted to explore how our hero will eventually become a Prince through an epic journey. At the start of the game, the Prince will be an adventurer and a drifter wandering from adventure to adventure with no real ties, always living in the present. To him, the past is gone and he carries no burden from it, the future is to come and will take care of itself. All that matters is now - the thrill of the moment, the next heartbeat, the next corner, jump and sensation.

We drew our inspiration from adventurers like Sinbad in the Arabian Nights, Han Solo from Star Wars and Aragorn from the Lord of the Rings.

Like all epic heroes, what the Prince wears says a lot about who he is and what he has been through. We really wanted to communicate visually the dichotomy that is the life of a wandering adventurer. On one hand, he has elements of luxury in his dress – the red and blue cloth that he uses as a turban and scarf that would be available only to those with money. However, he is also perfectly comfortable putting function before form, wearing plain leather leggings to help protect his legs rather then dazzle the eye.

We see that the Prince has a new appearance, but what about new abilities? What new tricks/attributes does the Prince have up his sleeve?
Our Prince has a lot of new abilities in both combat and acrobatics. He is taking the agility of the previous Prince to new heights of acrobatics. His range of acrobatic skills is wider than ever, allowing him to defy the laws of gravity with style and speed.

In addition to his sword, he is wearing a gauntlet that will be used both in acrobatics and in combat. This bounty from the Prince's earlier adventures will open new dimensions in his acrobatics and combat style. For instance, by using the gauntlet, you will be able to slide down very high walls and cliffs.

Combat has evolved since the last games as our ambition is to add the reactivity and strategy typically found in fighting games into our new combat system. We have studied numerous fight games and learned what worked/what didn't work, and implemented the most absorbing moments into our gameplay. We want the dramatic attack sequences of the Prince to be complemented by the use of camera, sound and visual effects to create an overall combat sequence whose intensity rivals the most spectacular choreographed fight scenes in cinema. In addition, the enemies you fight will be more cunning then any ever seen in a Prince of Persia game before, strategically using the environment to gain the upper hand, forcing the player to use quick thinking and reflexes to succeed.

We have also changed the role of the female character in a Prince of Persia game. No longer a secondary character, but instead a strong supporting character with heavy gameplay implications, the new female lead, Elika, will add value to every layer of the game: exploration, combat, acrobatics, puzzle-solving, storyline and overall immersion. She is a powerful companion of the Prince who accompanies him throughout the game - she adds an element of mystery, deepening the epic storyline. Our goal is to revolutionize the supporting character in an action-adventure game.

How are you going to revolutionize the supporting character in an action-adventure game?
The level of innovation we're bringing to Elika is similar to the innovation we brought with the Sands of Time system in the previous trilogy.

Elika is always a positive for the player. She interacts with the player in combat, acrobatics and puzzle-solving and always in a positive and helpful way. She enables special moves such as cooperative acrobatics, special combo attacks and navigation. Additionally, all of her magical powers come into play when the player requests them. She can never be killed and will never force her will on the player.

In terms of control, she will be controlled by AI but the player will have a specific "Elika"¯ button to trigger specific coop moves, attacks and magic. Our philosophy is to leave as much control to the player as possible without having her bog down the fast-paced rhythm of the game. This way we add a layer of strategy and make sure the player uses Elika when and how he wants.

Besides the gameplay asset that Elika represents, we want to build a strong bond between her and the Prince.

Can you give us more details about Elika's backstory?
Elika is descended from the Ahuras. She has lived in a land cut off from outside contact.

What have been your inspirations to design Elika?
Elika is a practical and intelligent woman. Independent and strong, she doesn't need to be protected. We drew inspiration from the Elizabeth Swann character in Pirates of the Caribbean or Padmé Amidala in Star Wars.

Even if she has magical powers, at first sight Elika is a human being; we didn't want to reduce her to her magical abilities. On that specific point, we drew our inspiration from Arwen in Lord of the Rings. Her magic is graceful with arabesques in contrast with the Corruption which takes on tribal forms.

14-08-08, 06:32
Part 3 soll übrigens am 20. August erscheinen. Siehe hier:http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/861108132/m/3941063876 http://forums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Und ich sollte mir das Interview langsam mal durchlesen. ^^