Space Siege Q&A - Story, Multiplayer, and the Influence of Dungeon Siege

Gas Powered Games gives us new details from on board the Armstrong.

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Dungeon Siege. Supreme Commander. Gas Powered Games latest project? Space Siege. A spiritual successor to Dungeon Siege, Space Siege takes place in, well, space, after earth has been destroyed by the alien Kerak. More than a dungeon-crawler with a galactic makeover, Space Siege forces you to make important decisions that affect gameplay. Do you choose to swap your limbs for cybernetic implants to earn a combat bonus? How will you upgrade your attack robot companion, HR-V? We sat down with lead designer Mike Marr to get the latest on Space Siege. Here's what he had to say.

That's not a bread knife.

GameSpot: Give us an overview of the single-player structure of Space Siege. How does the game unfold at the very start?

Mike Marr: Space Siege takes place on the Armstrong, which holds the last human survivors from the war between the Kerak and humans. At the start of the game, you see the Armstrong narrowly escape the final Kerak assault on Earth. Unfortunately, the Kerak managed to attach an attack pod to the Armstrong, and as the colony ship escapes, the Kerak begin to invade the ship. The game begins with you working to power up the ship's engines while fending off the aliens that are running around the ship.

GS: Space Siege seems like a more story-driven game than the Dungeon Siege series--how will the story unfold throughout the single-player game? Because Space Siege seems to be looking to include some of the same kind of addictive hack-and-slash gameplay as the Dungeon Siege series, how will the story be incorporated to draw players in without distracting them from chopping down bad guys and picking up all that wonderful loot?

MM: For Space Siege, we devoted more time and effort on delivering an engaging story than we have in the past. That said, I really wanted to deliver an experience that didn't bog the player down in dialogue; spending hours listening to throw-away characters drone on about their petty problems has never intrigued me. So in Space Siege, we focus on telling a singular story with several minor themes, and more importantly, we never stop the player during dialogue. You're free to roam about and continue normal gameplay while the story progresses.

So I'd say the game is more story-driven and less distracting than the Dungeon Siege series. As for dialogue choices...those are performed through the player's actions during the game, not through navigating a dialogue tree.

GS: Will the single-player game be structured in a similar way to the Dungeon Siege series, with progressively harder areas, intermittent merchants for shopping and selling, and gradual companions added to your party? What will be new and different in Space Siege?

MM: The big difference in Space Siege is that buying and selling is streamlined; there is no inventory management, and we allow you to shop frequently. So while the game is structured similarly to Dungeon Siege with regards to exploration and character development, we've eliminated the need to spend time sorting your inventory and going all around town looking for vendors and quest givers.

GS: Having created both the original Dungeon Siege and its sequel, along with expansion packs, what are the most important lessons the team has learned about creating a compelling single-player action role-playing game?

MM: I think perhaps the biggest takeaway is just how much the RPG space has changed since the release of Dungeon Siege. Gamers today expect a much more streamlined game that delivers a good story, excellent pacing, a forgiving death system, and buttery controls. Any less just isn't acceptable or fun.

GS: Give us an overview of Space Siege's multiplayer. What kind of experience do you hope players will have playing the game online?

MM: From the character-development standpoint, multiplayer starts with full access to the weapons, cybernetics, and skills. However, you have no upgrades to your gear. So, imagine starting World of Warcraft at level 70 with no gold or equipment. It's similar to that.

Multiplayer is about players developing methods of working together to complete missions. You might have one player specialize in setting up minefields and turrets while another player concentrates on luring the enemy into those traps. It's all about creating synergistic play styles and really opening up the RPG character-development options to the players. And the game offers an easy way to change your play style in between missions to keep things interesting and try different character builds.

GS: How will the multiplayer game be structured--will it consist of a connected version of the single-player campaign playable in multiplayer? One-off maps? Any competitive modes?

MM: The multiplayer game has an entirely different storyline from single-player and actually takes place on a different ship. We've made all new maps for multiplayer that were designed with multiple players in mind. There are no competitive modes.

From the dungeons to the stars.

GS: Finally, is there anything else you'd like to add about Space Siege's single- or multiplayer modes? Or about the game in general?

MM: I am really happy with how Space Siege came together. We've got a unique slant on how you develop your character, and we deliver a story that is interesting, fun, and doesn't slow down gameplay. Overall the game offers a great experience and removes much of the tedium found in many RPGs.

Discussion

29 comments
majidok
majidok

Nice captions and "That's not a bread knife." , LoL

Hesam_Titan
Hesam_Titan

wow,this game is good ,i think !! if like a Dungeon Siege it is a very good game. you now i Buy this game I sure and i can wait, not so long. I waiting........

SirFatalChaos
SirFatalChaos

This game sounds boring. Dungeon Siege 1 was fun, but this sounds really stupid.

thefencemarv
thefencemarv

I know I am getting it. All of the changes (i.e. no inventory) are going to be odd at first, but sure to be adapted to quickly. I loved the Dungeon Siege games and will love anything that is remotely similar.

johnangeljack
johnangeljack

all the images are about fighting on spaceships....it sounds boring.....aslo I hope the're aren't only to races humans and enemys that sounds boring too....so i hope good graphics it's not the only thing this game offers...

Grampy_Bone
Grampy_Bone

No inventory? Isn't that half the point of playing these types of games? Sounds boring.

vortex_gw
vortex_gw

I just hope it won't be short. Also I don't want it to be easy (Assassin's creed). At least 50 hours (without the sidequests, but I doubt it), many puzzles to solve and gender option.

vortex_gw
vortex_gw

Dungeon Siege 2 has many qualities and great story! Space Siege will be even better. Must-buy for me too. I know they will make better and better game in the future. Gas Powered Games are Blizzard in disguise (analogy).

advocacy
advocacy

Looks great, light-years ahead of Dungeon Siege II. A definite must-buy for me.

musicaz70
musicaz70

I hope the game makes up for Dungeon Siege 2's all around flat experience. Man I was let down by that game. But this looks pretty interesting so far. Hope they can add more depth to it.

Lycen
Lycen

Great a sci-fi hack and slash mmmm love it already. PS: the kerak are JERKS :P

Elann2008
Elann2008

Dungeon Siege in Space? Bring it on! But first, let me enjoy Too Human. ;)

serpentfang
serpentfang

I'm hoping it's not just Dungeon Siege set in space... wait, I liked Dungeon Siege I'm looking forward to seeing the space pack animal (M.U.L.E.)

flackstone
flackstone

thats game looks good but im looking forward too, Too Human more than this

VXCOM
VXCOM

its look awesome though.......i wish to customize my character and the storyline have couple of ending depends on what you decide ingame and not just a typical ending.... Dungeon Siege* is great but the story are too simple and short....and dont get me start on the equipment that always look the same...... anyway...im waiting for it......rock on~

samprice81
samprice81

Makes me want to play some Dungeon Siege again,

Griff_6
Griff_6

I've always liked the Dungeon Siege games, but their plot lines have been a little thin. Hopefully this time they get a solid story line to go along with their hack 'n slash gameplay. I liked the Diablo games better, so I think Diablo 3 will be better than this as well, but I hope it turns out well because the other dungeon sieges were enjoyable.

dual_barrel
dual_barrel

I would say that the Dungeon Siege games were the best to implement the Diablo gameplay in a game of today's standard.

joey2683
joey2683

Yay, something to play till Diablo 3. Never played Dungeon Siege though. Is this game comparable? Or do some of you think the series is better than Diablo 3?

navyseai
navyseai

I just have to say, I love gas powered games Supreme commander dungeon siege are some of the best games i ever played Many people prefer diablo style or starcraft style but i really believe they have a big future awaiting, and i hope someday i can join their team

majidok
majidok

Looks OK graphically

xMADxDOGx
xMADxDOGx

the rank on this game bekame almost the top ,thnx to all of us :)

ssta
ssta

I think that DS was better in more points of view than this one. Never liked space travels, but we'll see what it has to offer.

SonicHomeboy
SonicHomeboy

This game has caught my interest ever since I saw the trailer. So far, it doesn't sound so disappointing. :)

Warshock
Warshock

I've never heard of this game till now. But apparently it has grabbed some hype along the way.

galerian86
galerian86

Don't know why, but I always mix this game with Dead Space