An Honorable Interview with Dishonored’s Julien Roby: Part 2
“People get bored of playing the same thing”
by : Arthur Kotsopoulos
©2012 Arthur Kotsopoulos
Three of our staff have previewed and played the game and all three have emerged impressed.
Here we interview Julien Roby, Arkane Studios’ Executive Producer to find out how this refreshing experience has come about.
The following phone interview has been transcribed as best as possible taking into account accent differences.
Arthur: The fact Dishonored doesn’t have a multiplayer component hasn’t obviously spoilt your vision of what you wanted the single player to be like; has this given you (Arkane Studios) more freedom to enhance the single player experience?
Julien: Well yeah, if you don’t have multiplayer you have more time to work just on the single player and we didn’t see a point in making multiplayer.
So it was mainly about what we wanted to do, you know, a great single first person experience and that’s the kind of game we wanted to make.
We don’t want to just make multiplayer so I think for us it was good to just focus on what we wanted to do and continue adding things.
Arthur: In terms of the game and I don’t know if you’ve been reading but a lot of people are comparing it to a mixture of Bioshock and Thief.
Do you feel that this is a fair comparison to Dishonored and is it a positive image for the game moving forward in the future?
Julien: Yeah, well Bioshock is a really really good game so we’re very happy to be compared to a great game, that’s for sure, and I think it shares some similarities in terms of Bioshock as we’re a first person action game.
Of course other (first person action) games are Thief and Deus Ex, so I think it’s a fair comparison, in that we tried to do a first person action game with depth in terms of gameplay.
Arthur: In terms of story and of background themes that are included in the game, obviously you don’t just play an assassin going around and killing people or not killing people. Are the themes there for atmosphere and context to enhance the experience or are they actual themes that will be dealt upon as you go forward?
Julien: Well it’s kind of one of those things, the story is about how someone took the power and has sort of created a kind of oppression along that and it’s also along with the design of the things you can use in the world…
Arthur: With creating a new IP in today’s gaming environment obviously so close to this current generation’s console end of life cycle it would seem risky to develop, but it also helps a game stand out amongst all the other games in their respectiver genres out there, especially sequels.
Obviously gamers today are looking for something different and would appreciate the direction that Arkane Studios has gone with Dishonored?
Julien: I think and this is my point to you, gamers are looking for a good game…
Julien: So I mean as long as it is a good game then I hope they’re going to like it and like it a lot.
I think that the fact that it’s kind of a unique universe and a brand new IP as you said, it’s going to bring something fresh because if you look at the line up of games this year it’s a lot of sequels.
I hope that people are going to like the fact that we’re trying something new and different, not just trying to make something that’s already been done, that’s what I think.
Arthur: A rep at EA said that it’s not generally a good time to release a new IP near the end of a console cycle.
Arkane Studios obviously would disgaree with that as Dishonored is coming out next month.
Are there any kind of good arguements or points to show that there’s generally a need for a new IP near the end of a cycle? Development teams have better creativity and ideas to create something unique to give to the player, as well as maxxing out each machine to their fullest potential?
Julien: As I said, the IP thing is really something good, because we are at the end of the cycle.
We’ve seen 10 times the same game from the same franchise so it’s kind of tiresome giving the audience the same type of game, ”Ok this is the same game again.. Can I get something new?”
It would be a shame to have to wait until the next cycle to provide that.
I think it’s probably a good time if you have something new near the end of a console cycle, people get bored of playing the same thing.
Arthur: Haha, it gets a little tiresome playing the same shooters in a modern or future settings- it’s all the same environments and same weapons.
What is Dishonored‘s biggest achievement? What are you most proud of, that you have been able to put in the game to present to the player?
Julien: I think the thing that we are most proud of is when we had people from the press play the game.
The missions are done in a way that they are open so they can play their own way. When we talk to people (about) how they play the game only the story is the same.
We’ve created missions in a way that freely lets players express themselves. The game is directed by the player and we’re very proud of that.
Arthur: That’s definitely a very big achievement in terms of many games today obviously going “OK, this is where you’ve got to go, this is your mission and pretty much what we tell you to do is what you’re going to do”.
So giving the player a lot of choices to complete a mission the way they want is definitely the way gaming I feel is going in the future.
With Minecraft and mods such as DayZ basically we’re being told “Here you go this is your world, we’ve given you the tools go ahead and complete it the way you want”.
That is what I feel is going to be one of Dishonored’s biggest attractions for someone who hasn’t played a game like this before and hasn’t heard about it.
It’s like you’re telling them “Look this is the world we have given you that we’ve crafted, these are the tools we give you throughout the game, you can play it how ever you want, finish it how ever you want. At the end of the day you’ll still come to the same conclusion as everyone else and it’s all about the journey”
If you give the player a journey to craft in their own way, I feel that’s honestly one of the bigger points that gaming is moving towards. Like we both said everyone is getting tired of all these sequels going “This is the set path, this is the same story you’ve seen 100 times”
Giving the player that ability to basically do what they want hopefully draws a lot of people to play this game, and the more that the word spreads, the more excited I hope people are going to get about it.
Julien: That’s right, it’s all about the journey.
Arthur: Absolutely agree. Well those were all the questions I had written down. I appreciate the conversation, Julien, and I can’t wait to get my hands on the game.
Julien: Thank you.
- An Honorable Interview with Dishonored’s Julien Roby, Part 1: HERE
- Dishonored: most underestimated game of the year, HERE
- What Dishonored has on Assassin’s Creed, HERE
- A Delightfully Different Outing, HERE
- QuakeCon 2012: Harvey Smith Dishonored Interview, HERE
- Dishonored’s Game World: Soup of Ideas or Creative Genius, HERE
©2012 Arthur Kotsopoulos
Filed under: Console gaming, Game Impressions, Game Industry News, New Game Information, New PS3 Games, New Xbox 360 Games, Oxcgn Special feature, PC Previews, PS3 Game Previews, Xbox 360, Xbox 360 Game Previews, Xbox 360 News Tagged: | Arkane Studio, Bethesda, Bethesda Studios, Bioshock, Deus Ex, Dishonored, dishonored interview, dishonored preview, Executive producer, Julien Roby