Star Wars: Lethal Alliance Q&A - Taking the Lid Off

Senior producer Bertrand Helias spills the first details on the newly announced handheld Star Wars game in development at Ubisoft Montreal.

by

Say what you want about the Star Wars prequel trilogy, but it's a safe bet that the popularity of George Lucas' galaxy far, far away isn't going to abate anytime soon. According to LucasFilm, we've gotten all the Star Wars movies we're going to get, so it falls to other media--such as video games--to continue the fiction Lucas began almost 30 years ago. Ubisoft's Montreal studio will contribute to that hallowed universe with its own game, the just-announced Lethal Alliance for the PSP and DS. To get the first details on this upcoming portable title, we went straight to senior producer Bertrand Helias.

See, Jedi knights don't get to have all the fun.

GameSpot: Now that the entirety of the Star Wars saga has been put to film, how did you decide where to begin when creating Lethal Alliance?

Bertrand Helias: Although the Star Wars saga has been put to film and many questions about the Empire have been answered, there are still many mysteries and untold stories in the Star Wars universe. The last trilogy is still fresh in our minds, and the original trilogy is a true classic--while everyone on the team is a fan of the entire series, we thought it would be most interesting to explore events between Episode III and Episode IV.

GS: What's the game's premise, and when does it take place with relation to the movies?

BH: The game takes place just a few months before Episode IV. You will play a Twi'lek mercenary named Rianna Saren. The game marks her first appearance in the Star Wars universe. Early in the game, she is recruited by the alliance to infiltrate Empire-controlled planets and ultimately steal the plans of the Empire's most powerful weapon: the Death Star. I suggest gamers watch the beginning of Episode IV again to understand the link between this game and the saga.

GS: Did LucasFilm provide direction for the fiction you're creating, or have you had free reign to craft the game however you want?

BH: We have worked very closely with LucasArts to define the game and the story. They have been excellent collaborative partners, and have also given us the freedom to implement the game mechanics we wanted to develop. Of course, we needed to be respectful of the universe, as Star Wars is even more complex than what we have seen in the movies.

GS: So what kind of game is this, anyway? Tell us about the core gameplay.

BH: The game will be full of action and the experience is all about the collaboration between you (the agile and weapon-equipped Twi'lek mercenary) and your security droid Zeeo. Only by working together will you be able to defeat your enemies, access secret places, and, finally, complete your missions.

Rianna makes use of her droid buddy Zeeo in a fight against some stormtroopers.

GS: Star Wars characters in video games have a way of "discovering" latent Force powers. Can we expect Rianna to bust out a lightsaber or Force lightning at some point?

BH: No, this game won't have any lightsabers. Our Twi'lek is not a Jedi and the Force won't be with her. She is a mercenary; therefore she acts more like Han Solo than Luke Skywalker.

GS: How will Rianna and her droid Zeeo work together in the game? Will you be able to play as both characters?

BH: Zeeo will be helpful in many situations. In combat, the droid becomes your powerful ally to protect you or to help you defeat your enemies. In the game, working as a duo is more effective--and more deadly--than working alone. The more you collaborate with Zeeo, the stronger your partnership will become--you will, for instance, be able to perform some really cool, powerful combos by working together. Zeeo is also helpful during the exploration phases--it will help you open security doors, reach high areas, or bypass deadly areas.

GS: Will Lethal Alliance lean more toward the prequels or the original trilogy in terms of the alien races, locations, and ships you'll encounter?

BH: Your missions will take place on some famous planets from both sagas, like Coruscant, Mustafar, Tatooine, or the Death Star. But you will also discover never-before-seen locations on Despayre, Danuta, or even Alderaan. In each environment, you will encounter many characters and species: the unavoidable stormtroopers or scout troopers, Quarren, Arconas, many empire droids. In terms of ships, we cannot have a Star Wars game without the famous TIE fighters.

GS: Will players get to interact with many locations and characters that are well known in the Star Wars universe, or will much of the content be all-new? What familiar places and faces can we expect to see?

BH: In the game you will encounter some iconic characters like Darth Vader, Boba Fett, and Princess Leia. Of course, you will have some other surprises to discover! We have designed new places like Despayre, Alderaan, or Danuta. Each time we create something new from the saga, we work closely with LucasArts to stay consistent with the universe.

GS: Are you taking advantage of the DS and PSP systems' unique hardware features? How are you designing the game with these platforms' pros and cons in mind?

The game will take place in familiar locations from the movies, and in some new locales as well.

BH: When we started developing the games, we wanted to take advantage of the portability of each platform. On [the] PSP, we wanted to utilize the powerful hardware by making an action-packed, fun-filled game set in beautiful environments. On [the] DS, the main focus has been on using the touch screen--the game will be full 3D and contains many elements that require the use of the touch screen. As Wi-Fi is an integral feature on each platform, the multiplayer portions of both the PSP and DS games will enable you to take on your friends in a Star Wars universe.

GS: What will the main differences be between the PSP and DS versions of the game?

BH: The games will offer a similar experience, although there are differences, including multiplayer.

GS: What will Lethal Alliance's multiplayer be like? Will it be local wireless-only, or Internet-enabled?

BH: Both versions of the game offer local Wi-Fi capabilities. Each version will offer a different multiplayer experience. On PSP you will play Twi'lek versus Twi'lek, while on DS you will play droid versus droid.

GS: Thanks, Bertrand.

Discussion

118 comments
Aang007
Aang007

me want jedi's and boy bounty hunters!

RyanMichael_89
RyanMichael_89

looks good,ill probally get it. i hope its like the battlefront's casue those were good games...

Zkeptik
Zkeptik

Hay javva11, I was just about to say the same thing about Kyla Katarn but then remembered that he did NOT steal them. Remember in the movie they said "many" people died getting those plans there. I think you just delivered them through the later half. :S I hope. Funny ads though, for a second I thought it was a sequel to Masters of Teras Kasi...and I was scared. I for one have no faith in portable shooters so I hope they do more of a Pursuit Force action automatic aim type shooter as opposed to a Splinter Cell type pain in the arse.

homestar_run_GO
homestar_run_GO

Many Bothans died to bring you this information. Bothans, I say! Bothans! Not Twi'leks! BOTHANS! Oh well, being it's a Star Wars game, there is no way I can't get it.

javva11
javva11

Yeah, I thought Kyle Katarn obtained the plans for death star. Here we go Lucasarts f***ing with the story again so they can make more money. :(

SR71halo
SR71halo

looks pretty good, actually

AA7
AA7

The DS doesnt blow.

boxcarracer565
boxcarracer565

GS: What will the main differences be between the PSP and DS versions of the game?...........................................................................................Better graphics, better multiplayer, more depth. And those ARE psp graphics, Ds blows and will never have those graphics.

BoBKiD
BoBKiD

Yep! Those are PSP screenies! And, boy, it looks c00l!!

HXCDEW
HXCDEW

Of course those screens are from the PSP, how can some of you be so naive. DS won't have those graphics, sorry but that's just your wishful thinking. So we'll see how the two versions turn up when they are released.

jpcorb
jpcorb

This sounds cool. It's not high on my list of games I need to get, though, unless there's a good amount of starfighter combat. My fingers are still crossed for a Rogue Squadron on the DS.

JesseZinVT
JesseZinVT

all I have to say is that this is bull****. Play Star Wars: Dark Forces. It was Kyle Katarn who got the Death Star plans. Not some Twi'lek 'ho.

coltACP
coltACP

very interesting-it could be that the DS concertrates on the droid more than the twilek(hence lethal alliance having a dual meaning-PSP and DS creating the Full game experience) wether or not it's that is another matter though. DS version could end up being more puzzle based perhaps, probably won't turn out very good, unless they really are trying to pull out all the stops.

Talonfire
Talonfire

I'm pretty sure Danuta was already in Dark Forces, you did steal the Death Star plans from there after all.

rokkuman09
rokkuman09

I don't think the DS would be able to suppor that caveturd....

caveturd
caveturd

Yeah.....the screens definitely look like the psp....i hope the ds version looks like that...

caveturd
caveturd

why is the ds multiplayer droid versus droid?!?!?!?!? why not twilek?

UltraWoody
UltraWoody

I can't believe how GREAT this game looks!

ff_dork
ff_dork

im thinking about getting this game but heres the problem.....i own both a DS and a PSP. which version do you think will be better?

ugadog
ugadog

Star Wars: Death Star or Star Wars DS anyone else think this is a great idea?

yobrul
yobrul

hmm! interesting!

Bazook
Bazook

aaww man they should've brought a concept that Jedi Knight 2 had man when you start as basically a mercenarie but gain jedi powers so I'm a bit dissapointed but I can't understand the graphics which version is it

iownhalo
iownhalo

I will buy this game, then I will play it, then I will make love to it.........no wait.... I'll be too busy making love to Oblivion!!! (Which I'm so excited about because I'm getting it as a Christmas present to myself!!!)

Clanko
Clanko

Kyle kataran found out about the death star to be specific and got part of the plans. afterward the alliance hired this twileek to get the rest and confirm what they already had....

Lafitte
Lafitte

waleedershad that goes unsaid. There is no way a DS could handle those kind of graphics.

Himolarious1
Himolarious1

patjuan, Im sorry but you are mistaken or confused. 3d data is similar to text files in terms of size. They dont take up much room. A games assets are what need the space; textures, sounds, music, voice, and video, are the biggest files in roughly that order. Whether or not you agree with that, my real argument here is that the DS has more than enough space for 3D as evidenced by the fact that the largest N64 cartridge was only 64mb ( not a rom but the actual space on the cart). PS: I looked that up because I knew it couldnt be more than a few megs considering how expensive those things are. Most sites state the size as 512Mbit which is equal to 64mb. Oh and PSP UMD's hold 1.8 gigs of data not 1.5.

jmace86
jmace86

A game about Han and Chewie would be cool, set between Episode III and IV showing how they met up and some of their early adventures. But it would only be really good if they got Harrison Ford to do Han's Voice. About this game's storyline and the conflict with the Dark Forces Storyline, as someone else said, Rianna might just help Kyle Katarn steal the plans in some way. Or she might not steal them at all, the story just says that she was HIRED to steal the plans, not that she WILL steal them. She might die at the end of game or something, or she might just miss her opportunity to steal them and then Kyle steals them anyway so it doesn't matter and the whole game was for nothing :P

EvilGenesis
EvilGenesis

The only thing I would wanna see from the Star Wars universe is the story of Han Solo. No Twi'lek and a droid, but Han Solo and Chewie helping him!

rl_41
rl_41

Sounds pretty cool, but the lack of force powers and lightsabers could be disturbing. Still, I'll probably end up getting it, sounds cool. Don't hate on Twi'leks or being a female character either.

strangeseraph
strangeseraph

I want to be able to play a male twilek. Why can't I? It should be a choice. o.o Twileks are cool though. :)

KingGel
KingGel

who ever thinks Star Wars was not built on force powers ,lightsabers,and jedi's and thinks this should be another crappy starwars shotter game is a moron and can kiss my ass.I say this because the star wars universe was built on force powers,jedi's,and lightsabers.Also if they want you to play as something besides a human like a crappy Twi'lek and you have to be a girl then you should be able to choose what type of sex and star wars specie(including humans) you want to be and be able to custimize your character . if the producers read this i hope they fix this so far crappy game up and get the story line right.They better make this game better because i've been looking for a good psp star wars game.

KingGel
KingGel

THEY SHOULD MAKE A LIGTSABER AND FORCE POWERS IN THIS GAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ALSO YOU SHOULD NOT PLAY AS A Twi'lek!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

jstaguy
jstaguy

I think that after the prequels and the new systems available now and in the very near future Star Wars fans have been waiting for a new Star Wars game. This one looks very promising with new characters and new places not used on other Star Wars game. Most impressive.

elite11
elite11

IT SOUNDS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!IWANT IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I WANT IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

William12123
William12123

With the continuity thing, I admit, this game screws it up somewhat, but the death star plans (first) had to be stolen many times, because the emperor, for the first, didnt want leaks. We know one part came from Moff Kalast (empire at war) and another from kyle katarn(dark forces

Doolum
Doolum

definitely will track this game

patjuan
patjuan

Himolarious1, Actually, the storage media has every thing to do with why the DS does not have alot of 3D games. I think that you are forgetting that a video game is data. The amount of memory affects the amount of data that can be stored Therefore 1.5 GB can store more data than a 128 mb cartridge. This makes it easier for a developer to develop a 3D game for the PSP than for the DS. Also, the developer would have to make more compromises in order for the game to fit on to a 128 MB cartridge than a 1.5 GB UMD. This is a fact that was shown back when the PlayStation and N64 debut and was further illustrated by a lack of 3d games for the GBA.

LordelX
LordelX

Must be the PSP version shown in the screenshots. I like the move back to mercenaries and non-Jedi characters. Won't this game conflict with Dark Forces (PC/PS1)? I thought that game was all about stealing plans to the death star.

AntoniustheGrey
AntoniustheGrey

Wow, this game looks pretty good, graphics look amazing and it appears as if the combat will be awesome. I look forward to this title.

Jin_Kazuma__PSP
Jin_Kazuma__PSP

Im not a star wars fan,but a full packed action game sounds great.

jpbas
jpbas

These screens look to good to be DS to me. How will the dual screens work out I wonder?

Khoo1992
Khoo1992

Why it is not Lucasarts?