Interview with Illusion Softworks (26/10/04)

This interview was between H& and an unknown member or members of Illusion Softworks.

Dear Illusion Softworks, Thank you for agreeing to do this interview =)

Q. Has the reaction to Hidden & Dangerous 2 and Sabre Squadron been what Illusion Softworks had hoped for?

A: Reaction to Hidden and Dangerous 2 was generaly good, but H&D2 is very large-scale project with many possibilities so player need many hours of gameplay to get into the game. Many of todays players don`t have the time and actually want easier approach to the game with less reality and more fun. Some people also found difficult to use our in-game tactical map.

Q. Rumours have been going around about Illusion Softworks releasing co-operative maps of the original H&D2 missions for free over the internet, is this true?

A: That is correct, we are currently making some co-operative maps from original H&D2 maps, which will be free to download from our website in individual patches.

Q. Will there be any alternative versions of current maps or new maps released freely for other multiplayer modes in the future?

A: We believe that people most want more co-operative maps, but if we recognise that other modes are wanted we can always make some more maps.

Q. Before the release of H&D2, media such as screenshots and movies showed things that weren't in the released game. There is too much to list but some examples include screenshots taken of scenes that aren't in the game, one scene was a bride with a train on it, another a warehouse. Another example is a movie showing a player speed crawling on his hands and knees. Even some weapons such as the flamethrower were taken out. How much and why were these things taken out of the final product?

A: We re-worked few things in original H&D2, so some of the features were lost in order to put new ones in.

Q. Many fans have wondered about the last mission of H&D2 "Final show-down", why did the game end with defending the bunker against the Russians?

A: It`s kind of a twist for player. You finish the last mission, watch the video when soldier is comming from the bunker and then you are back in game and must solve another problem. We wanted to show by this mission that on one hand the war is over, but on the other hand another war began � the Cold War between west and communist east, new battle for dividing the liberated world, but we didn`t want to cast doubt on the importance of Russian army. Soldiers you meet in the mission are not ordinary Russian conscripts, they are members of NKVD. The truth is that they wanted to to get hold of German research which was very advanced at the end of World War II.

Q. PC Gamer had a preview of H&D2 and had a quote of Peter Kubek saying there would be no editing tools available due to the tools not being developed for release. Has this changed, will their ever be an editor released for the LS3D engine?

A: Releasing editor for H&D2 was never planned and making such tool would mean a lot of extra time that we need for H&D2 support and development of next project.

Q. H&D2 was released without co-operative mode now it has been added in Sabre Squadron but why wasn't co-operative mode in H&D2?

A: Development of co-operative is like a development of a new game. Co-operative gameplay has many differencies comparing to single player gameplay. We made a lot of changes in code at the last moment and we didn`t want to make thigs half-done. Sabre Squadron development was most of the time about co-op and I think our fans and all other players will appreciate it.

Q. H&D2 missions were mostly fiction but the missions in Sabre Squadron are more based on fact and real operations that took place, why did you choose to do this?

A: We thought that it would be more interesting for players of our game if they know they are part of an operation that actually happened in the past.

Q. A lot of fans spoke out about what they liked and didn't like in H&D2, did the fans suggestions have much impact on the development of Sabre Squadron?

A: Fans actually helped us a lot while balancing gameplay, we also organised external betatest and some of the ideas which came from it were very good and have been put into the game.

Q. H&D2 had cheat codes for the weapons to be available in Single player does Sabre Squadron have cheat codes for the new weapons, if so what are they?

A: Sorry, no new cheats in Sabre. You can use old one though.

Q. In H&D2 there were some secrets or Easter eggs that the player could activate in some levels are there any secrets or Easter eggs in Sabre Squadron?

A: We had slight problems because of strict censorship terms for example on American market, where the rating 16+ was quite hard to get when you have skeletons hanging on trees ;-) That`s why we didn`t put any new ones into Sabre Squadron.

Q. This is more of a personal query but I am sure some other fans would like to know as well. In Hidden & Dangerous 1 the skies moved which added to the great atmosphere but sadly the skies do not move in H&D2, why is this?

A: We used different technology for environment and background, which gave us a lot of new advantages, but we had to throw away the moving clouds. Putting clouds as separate objects into the game was difficult too, because of 3D tactical mode in which you can roam on the whole mission freely and see any possible graphical issues.

Q. There's a new patch coming for H&D2 and Sabre Squadron can you tell us any detials about what they will fix or add? (old news but thought I'd kept it in)

A: New patch will synchronise H&D2 and Sabre Squadron, so players can play original H&D2 maps together. It will add to H&D2 all changes that were put into Sabre Squadron like holding breath while aiming with sniper rifles or healing overtime instead of insta-healing. It will also balance heavy weapons MP44 and BAR. We also fixed some minor bugs.

Q. Finally, What can we see from Illusion Softworks in the future? Mafia 2? Hidden & Dangerous 3? or something new?

A: I`m sorry, but I can`t give you much info, only that another game will be action adventure style shooter.


Once again thank you for taking the time to answer these questions and thanks for Sabre Squadron it's a great expansion pack.