Wolfenstein: The New Order is currently in development at MachineGames and it is slated to hit retailers sometime next year, but we had the chance to find out more about the game and where developers are looking to take the series.
It’s been nearly five years since the last installment in the franchise, but it is one that dates back to the 1980’s and has a very loyal following. From what we’ve scene it’ll be a classic Wolfenstein game with some unexpected themes and twists.
In an exclusive interview with ventwing.com, MachineGames creative director Jen Matthies spoke about how this game was initially set to be a current generation title only, and what it has been like to adapt to developing on the Xbox One and PS4.
“It started out as a current-gen game, but we’ve been through the switch before with the Xbox to the Xbox 360,” Matthies said. “It’s basically the same experience, where you find out the new things you can do with these systems.”
“The simple architecture is one component of an easier transition, but it’s also that Microsoft and Sony have learned a lot over the years, which makes developing for these consoles better and the tools we have better.”
History in a game like this has a chance to influence the development of characters dramatically, and while history certainly has a presence in this game, MachineGames wanted to be able to establish their own fiction within history.
Matthies spoke about the steps he took in developing the characters of Wolfenstein: The New Order and where the inspiration for the complex character Deathshead came from.
“Obviously, there is inspiration from history, but developing characters is a much more particular job. It’s important that each character has their own voice and their own space in the world. It’s much more on the creative side of creating characters, than it is on the historical side.
“I think history does come from anywhere. So for Deathshead, I had this idea that he would be this really happy guy. Sometimes there is a lot of really rich soil in opposites because that’s the first thing you think about when you’re trying to think of the most horrible charactrer in the world.
“But I had this idea that because he survived a crash, that that would reigninte his love of living and it all would be a joy ride for him. But of course that isn’t the relaity of Deathshead,” Matthies said.
The reality is a very creepy, intimidating one and it is one that players will surely enjoy.
Matthies talked about his experiences on the next-generation consoles thus far, as well as some of the potential that developers will be able to find with the new systems.
“Game development is so complicated and you have various components, but some things on the performance side, we are able to drive real-time blend shades, for example. That is really good for extreme facial expression, like big smiles. Those kinds of things are really hard to do.
“Next-gen allows us to take steps that we have never done before. It’s also on the gameplay side, you have a new model for connectivity that you can exploit. It’s not one thing with next-gen that makes game creation better, it’s many different things.
“Obviously it’s going to look better, but you don’t want to change the gameplay experience for the current-gen players. So I would say the gameplay is going to fundamentally feel the same, but the fidelity will be a lot different on the next-generation consoles,” Matthies said.
He went on to elaborate about how the transition has been moving from current-generation consoles to the next-generation consoles.
“It’s been very smooth developing on the next-gens and they allow us to spend time iterating on the game as opposed to iterating on the technology. It’s been very beneficial as a developer and has been a very smooth transition. We are also releasing early next year in 2014,” Matthies said.
Finally, with a series like Wolfenstein there are obvious influences that play a major role in the creation of a sequel, and the most recent one is the iteration that Matthies and his team are paying the most attention to.
“Wolfenstein 3D was sort of this legendary moment as we played it on PC and it was mind-blowingly awesome. So we wanted to honor that and have a taken a lot of cues from Wolfenstein 3D.
“We wanted to build upon what that installment brought. We didn’t want to violate any of the lore, but most of it was inspired by the original game. We also wanted to add a lot more depth to the characters and make them someone you could relate to,” Matthies said.
The final thing we were left with was that of course, Wolfenstein: The New Order will be released sometime next year on current and next-generation consoles. For all of our latest exclusives, previews, reviews and features, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.