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Chris Roberts Interview

GameSpot has a chat with Chris Roberts in advance of the game announcement we're all presuming will follow the recently discovered countdown on the Roberts Space Industries Website that's set to run out on October 10th. While the Wing Commander creator is still holding his cards pretty close to the vest, he discusses his lack of desire to make a mobile or social game, and how he has secured private funding so he can forgo working with publishing partners like Activision or Electronic Arts. He also doesn't discourage the presumption (supported by this teaser trailer) that this new project will be the type of space combat game he helped pioneer. "A couple years ago, I came to the point where I was playing stuff and I was feeling like the technology was getting to the point where I could do some stuff that I was interested in again. The level of immersion and realism that you can do [today] is significantly higher," Roberts said. "I want to get back to the roots of what I did in the old days with Wing Commander, which was, if you've got a really badass PC, this is going to show it off."

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16. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 3, 2012, 09:38 Beamer
 
CJ_Parker wrote on Oct 3, 2012, 09:25:
dj LiTh wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 18:12:
... and bet he'd raise more money if he went the kickstarter route.

You'd most likely lose that bet. The last space sim on Kickstarter didn't even reach the low initial target for financing. OK, it didn't have the name of Chris Roberts to it but still... space sims seem to be seriously out of fashion. How many people do you know who still possess a joystick? Right.

It's pretty mysterious, too. Fuck, I remember a time when you bought a new PC and they gave you a cheap joystick for free as a bonus so you could play MS Flight Sim, Wing Commander, Strike Commander, X-Wing or TIE fighter on your shiny new 486DX-40.

So what happened?

You know what? I think Microsoft happened. There used to be a time when people were looking forward to every major Microsoft OS release more because of the latest version of MSFS that usually came along with it than they were looking forward to actually trying out the new OS. Every new MSFS and flight and space sims in general were marvels of technology. Those were the "killer apps" back in the day, the system sellers.
Every new incarnation of Direct3D, OpenGL and Glide was a major milestone on the path to more realistic graphics and people were able and willing to plunk down the cash for the hardware to let that realism happen.
Then comes along Microsoft and releases the Xbox which results in laziness and (relative) stagnation. No longer is the PC the elite leading platform. Cross platform becomes the new buzzword and due to technological limitations space and flight sims no longer manage to stand out from a mass of very same-y looking games. The end.


Doom happened. Flight sims died when FPS games replaced them. No need for new hardware, more visceral feel.
 
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15. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 3, 2012, 09:25 CJ_Parker
 
dj LiTh wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 18:12:
... and bet he'd raise more money if he went the kickstarter route.

You'd most likely lose that bet. The last space sim on Kickstarter didn't even reach the low initial target for financing. OK, it didn't have the name of Chris Roberts to it but still... space sims seem to be seriously out of fashion. How many people do you know who still possess a joystick? Right.

It's pretty mysterious, too. Fuck, I remember a time when you bought a new PC and they gave you a cheap joystick for free as a bonus so you could play MS Flight Sim, Wing Commander, Strike Commander, X-Wing or TIE fighter on your shiny new 486DX-40.

So what happened?

You know what? I think Microsoft happened. There used to be a time when people were looking forward to every major Microsoft OS release more because of the latest version of MSFS that usually came along with it than they were looking forward to actually trying out the new OS. Every new MSFS and flight and space sims in general were marvels of technology. Those were the "killer apps" back in the day, the system sellers.
Every new incarnation of Direct3D, OpenGL and Glide was a major milestone on the path to more realistic graphics and people were able and willing to plunk down the cash for the hardware to let that realism happen.
Then comes along Microsoft and releases the Xbox which results in laziness and (relative) stagnation. No longer is the PC the elite leading platform. Cross platform becomes the new buzzword and due to technological limitations space and flight sims no longer manage to stand out from a mass of very same-y looking games. The end.

 
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14. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 3, 2012, 09:00 Burrito of Peace
 
Panickd wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 20:25:
...they dumbed the game down considerably...

That was actually a lot Erin Roberts' doing. If you recall, he was also the head of the abysmal Privateer 2 and Brute Force.

As long as Chris Roberts keeps his brother far away from anything he creates, it will turn out really good.
 
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13. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 20:25 Panickd
 
Muscular Beaver wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 16:23:
Well, it doesnt seem he has the rights to Wing Commander or Privateer, so this will be no game in Wing Commander universe. So I am not that excited yet, because Freelancer was only meh.

I kind of liked Freelancer. Sure it wasn't what Chris Roberts fully envisioned because he left right after Microsoft acquired his company and they dumbed the game down considerably, but I don't think his original vision could have been accomplished in the time of 600Mhz PCs. But when I think of his original vision for that game I get very giddy over what he could do now if he were just left to his own devices and allowed to explore everything that PC gaming is capable of today much the way he did back with Strike Commander (and as a side note - damn I'm old).
 
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12. Re: More Big Picture Details Oct 2, 2012, 19:47 HorrorScope
 
J wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 13:12:
The Blues News cheerleaders are out in full force again today!

Damned if we do, damned if we don't. I'll be interested in seeing what he's drumming up.
 
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11. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 18:12 dj LiTh
 
Thing i'm a bit worried about, and i'd be less worried about if this was crowd funded (kickstarted). Wont his 'private sources' take on the role of publisher and start wanting to see a ROI? I hope not personally, but i think i'd actually feel better about this and bet he'd raise more money if he went the kickstarter route.  
Avatar 46370
 
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10. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 16:39 Muscular Beaver
 
Creston wrote on Oct 2, 2012, 16:30:
It'd be awesome to see a new space sim made by CR, but without the actual TEAM that did the Wing Commanders, who knows how much of the feel he can recapture?

It'll be an interesting thing to watch, that's for sure. And I'm glad he's (apparently) managing to avoid having to work with the fucking publishers who would be death to a game of this kind. Here's hoping his private funders will allow him to build exactly the game he wants.

Creston

Yeah youre right. IIRC CR actually left Freelancer at the end of development because of problems with the publisher. So maybe if he doesnt have to care about some publishers bullshit, and he is there from the start to the end, it might actually be better than Freelancer.
 
Avatar 12928
 
Oh that is so lame... You will PAY for your use of inappropriate dialogue!
- Mojo Jojo
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9. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 16:30 Creston
 
It'd be awesome to see a new space sim made by CR, but without the actual TEAM that did the Wing Commanders, who knows how much of the feel he can recapture?

It'll be an interesting thing to watch, that's for sure. And I'm glad he's (apparently) managing to avoid having to work with the fucking publishers who would be death to a game of this kind. Here's hoping his private funders will allow him to build exactly the game he wants.

Creston
 
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8. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 16:23 Muscular Beaver
 
Well, it doesnt seem he has the rights to Wing Commander or Privateer, so this will be no game in Wing Commander universe. So I am not that excited yet, because Freelancer was only meh.  
Avatar 12928
 
Oh that is so lame... You will PAY for your use of inappropriate dialogue!
- Mojo Jojo
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7. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 15:50 dj LiTh
 
If he does something along the lines of vaporware Infinity: Quest for Earth, and Wing Commander, i'll be a happy man.  
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6. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 15:37 wtf_man
 
I want him to make another movie... that still has Freddie Prinze Jr. and Mathew Lillard starring in it as Fred and Shaggy uncovering the mystery of the Kilrathi Conspiracy...

...err wait.
 
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5. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 14:45 NegaDeath
 
I would love to see what he could do with a space sim and modern technology. Damn near salivating.  
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4. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 14:35 Panickd
 
Chris Roberts + Space sim = Shut up and take my money!  
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3. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 13:12 J
 
The Blues News cheerleaders are out in full force again today!  
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2. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 12:56 peteham
 
I'm getting the sinking feeling this "online component" means it's going to be an MMO of sorts...  
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1. Re: Chris Roberts Interview Oct 2, 2012, 12:29 CJ_Parker
 
Sounds way too good to be true so it will probably fail in some way or another...  
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