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Nagoshi discusses Binary Domain’s Squad-based gameplay and AI on GS

April 28, 2011

This gentleman is ready to shoot to kill. Why? The gun's tilted sideways, so that's obviously a kill shot. Nagoshi sure knows american movie clichés.

 Now that the radio silence has been lifted, here’s another piece on Binary Domain, Nagoshi and Amusement Vision’s first major title on both of the HD platforms, this interview is focused a lot on Binary Domain’s squad-based shooter and at first glance it does seem to contain a lot of “meat” compared to a similar title also released by Sega, here’s some selected quotes:

GS: What factors influenced your decision to make a squad-based shooter? How are you hoping to make it stand out from competition in the popular shooter genre?

TN: I can’t reveal the mechanics in details yet, but I did not want to make this a simple game which only requires you to shoot at everything with ally NPCs following you around.

The game has a system that automatically detects the situation based on points like “What is the impact on the squad, or does it have an impact at all?” The player is free to make decisions that may work best for him or best for his squad, so you can be a selfish player or a good team player. The situation could differ greatly based on that selection, but simply covering your squad all the time will not lead you to victory. In other words, the key to this game is to make decisions based on all the factors such as the player, allies, missions, and battles in real time.

The game also has a unique and original method of communicating with the allies. Though controlled by CPU, the enemies and allies will act as if they have a life of their own. With such a high level of CPU controls, we wanted to create real-time game scenes with unlimited drama.

Well, that is certainly much more complex than Vanquish, which consisted of just healing characters ocasionally to get extra items and there were achievements based on how many characters you save, this one, however, seems to have a morality system built-in and choice.

Nagoshi also wants to make sure that there aren’t any awkward AI moments during combat (don’t know if that’s a jab at Capcom, but…):

GS: You’ve mentioned that moving AI technology forward is a huge focus for this game. Can you describe the technology behind the game’s AI system and how it affects the action on the screen?

TN: First of all, many of the existing titles (regardless of their sales success) had many elements that seemed as if the developers gave up. For example, there are unavailable movements due to technological limits or strange AI reactions that make you wonder, “Why is it moving like that?” or “Why is it not making decisions that could work better for him?” Those actions were just so unnatural and frustrating. I had always been thinking such problems should be completely resolved, so with Binary Domain, we addressed these issues as much as possible. You should be able to notice that once you get to see the game.

Source: Gamespot

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