|Q&A From T.T. Games|
Posted by on October 18, 2006 at 12:13 AM CST:
Answers provided by:
AP = Arthur Parsons - Lead Designer
CS – Chris Stanforth – Lead Programmer
MS – Mike Snowdon – Lead Artist
KG – Kieran Gaynor - Producer
RE = Richard Earl - Marketing Assistant, TT Games
Baby Pred - Will there be a free Promo item with this game like there was with the old BIONICLE GAME?
RE - At the moment there are no plans to bundle BIONICLE Heroes with any other promo items. However, this can sometimes differ from retailer to retailer and as a general rule we normally look at the possibility of adding promo items to a game.
Will the DS version having any online features via Wi-fi?
RE - Yes, the DS version will feature online play. There is a ‘versus mode’ for up to 4 players to play against each other in an arena mode through wi-fi.
Master of the Shadow Kraata - Will the DS version use the touch screen as a major part in the game?
RE - On the DS version the touch screen is an integral part of the game as you have to use it to enable your character to look around. The game is also first person, as opposed to the console versions, so the use of the touch screen takes on greater importance.
Turaga takuaE3 - There's a PC version, right? Will it have any special features?
RE – Yes! There will be a PC version that will be released at the same times as the console versions. The game will be the same as the console versions, so there are no PC specific extra features however, the game has so much to do and complete anyway that you’ll be kept busy whatever platform you buy.
Toa Ouranos Shamayim - Is it true that you play a character who is a human from our world entering the Bionicle world, and if so what are the reasons you guys decided to use that plot element?
AP – We decided to have the player put into the BIONICLE world as the hero character, this way when you play BIONICLE Heroes you will feel that it is you playing and not one of the BIONICLE characters. You do not play a human character, and you are never shown as a character, in the intro movie you are greeted by Balta who asks if you are a hero here to save the island, and he tells you to use the powers that the masks grant you to save Voya Nui. You then take the form of Jaller, and the other Inika. We made a conscious decision from day one not to follow any of the official Bionicle story threads, as we felt this would limit what we could do with the game. Since we wanted to make the best game possible we decided to have a very simplistic story, the Piraka have overrun Voya Nui, you are the hero and using the powers of the Inika masks must save Voya Nui.
Voya Nui Master - Will we get to use the any Inika mask powers?
AP – The player does get to use mask powers, however these are not necessarily the mask powers that you would associate with the official storyline mask powers. Since we were making a game that needs to be really fun and also logical the mask powers had to fit. So for example in game Nuparu is able to walk up walls and also unearth hidden treasure.
Have you had any problems making the game?
AP – we have had many technical problems whilst developing BIONICLE Heroes. Due to the large amount of content we have tried to shoe horn into Bionicle Heroes there have been many obstacles to overcome, however we have managed to do that and end up with the fantastic game that we have. BIONICLE Heroes is a really big game, with huge stunning levels, and large numbers of characters. It is a massive credit to all of the artists and programmers that worked so hard to get everything done.
Toa Rabin - Could you build in unlockable character designer so you could make your own Toa-Piraka with one left-click and one right-click power?AP – BIONICLE Heroes contains over 50 unique characters from the Bionicle universe, plus in excess of 30 Moc’s, as such we pushed the consoles to their limits. We decided against user created characters as it would be virtually impossible to do this as the characters would need to be animated, and as Bionicle allows you to create pretty much anything you can possibly imagine the number of possibilities made this unfeasible.
Shadrahk - How many levels are there?
AP – There are over 25 levels in BIONICLE Heroes. There is a main game and then absolutely loads of freeplay elements. As such a 100% playthrough is going to take in excess of 20 hours – it is a very, very large game.
How much of the story line is in it?
AP – The decision was made at the very start of the project not to follow the official BIONICLE storyline. We felt that doing this would compromise the game and would force us into making a game that may not be fun, so instead we decided to set the player as a hero that arrives on Voya Nui and has to track down the mask of life and save the Matoran of Voya Nui. This gave us far more scope to make a really fun and rewarding game.
Will there be mini games for us to play and if so can you say how many there will be?
AP – As I said there are loads of free play elements in the game which really bring the player back for more. Aside from the free play parts of the game there are also 3 further bonus levels for the player to try their hand at.
Is the game multiplayer or single player?
AP – Right from the start we wanted to make a seriously impressive and immersive Bionicle game that would be an awesome gaming experience for anyone that bought it, in order to do this we decided to concentrate on a single player game.
In gameplay can you switch from character to character or will it only be one character per level like in first Bionicle game?
RE – BIONICLE Heroes should offer a very different experience to previous BIONICLE titles. Once thing (among many) that worked very well in LEGO Star Wars was enabling the player to enter the different levels in any order – this was something we wanted to do with BIONICLE Heroes. Therefore you will be able to take on the power of all 6 Toa in each level, rather than being restricted, providing you play skilfully enough!
Will there be side quests in adventure mode besides the main story line?
AP – Bionicle Heroes contains a significant amount of freelay gameplay in each level. There are plenty of hidden areas and bonus items to encourage players to replay the various levels.
Are there any items and if so what kinds and how many?
Within the levels there are numerous collectibles which unlock items for the player, or allow them to purchase items from the shop. There are character ability upgrades, weapon upgrades, armour upgrades, bonus levels, bonus items for the Piraka characters to play with once you have unlocked them, 7 bonus playable characters, 100 BIONICLE masks, 36 different enemy characters to unlock and learn about, 50 different game achievements. The game is absolutely rammed with content.
If you guys/girls (the game creators) were to change ANYTHING throughout the whole game what you change and why?
If I could change anything I don’t actually think I would, as a designer I am very happy with the end result, and think that everyone involved with the development of Bionicle Heroes has done an amazing job. That’s not to say that I don’t have things I would like to do if we were to make a sequel. Obviously the Bionicle brand is ever evolving, and since finishing the game we have seen several new characters and characters from the 2007 range, so we’d all love to work with these new characters.
Will you be able to combine the diffrent Bionicle characters in the game?
Regarding combiners, this is something that we were unable to do with BIONICLE Heroes because of the sheer size and scope of the game we have created, however if we were to make another then it’s definitely something we’d like to include.
Aegis – What characters are playable?
RE – There are 12 playable characters in the game. At first you’ll only be able to play as the Toa Inika, but as you progress through the game you’ll be able to take on the powers of your defeated foe, the Piraka.