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Carribean! Interview at RockPaperShotgun

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Carribean! Interview at RockPaperShotgun

Interview - posted by Crooked Bee on Fri 10 August 2012, 14:01:20

Tags: Carribean!; Mount & Blade; TaleWorlds

The folks over at RPS have posted an interview about Carribean!, described by them as "Mount and Blade with pirates" (or dare I say, Mount and Blade with Pirates!). In the interview, the game's producer Alexander Souslov talks about integrating pirates and naval combat into the Mount and Blade engine, ship types and crew, sandboxiness, and related things. Have a snippet:

RPS: Why pirates?

Souslov: That must be obvious, pirates are almost communists, and we here in the former Eastern Bloc just love anything communist. Perhaps we were ought to call it Caribbean Comrades!, but that would make an impression of a game about Che Guevara and the Castro brothers, and we’re pretty concerned about the US market.

In all seriousness, we have to blame the old boy Fenimore Cooper. After the performances given by Johnny Depp, getting involved with the pirates would be what Dostoevsky and Nabokov referred to as “poshlost” – thus, no pirates ever, that’s what we decided after With Fire and Sword was out. Let’s make our next project a game about the Great Lakes, about the trappers and the Iroquois, about Indian massacres and the scalping of the stupid palefaces. That was our plan.

Naturally, if we’re going Great Lakes, the game has to feature pirogues. We’ve built a level with the Iroquois assaulting an English fort across a lake, but the redcoats had some cannons and kept sinking the poor Americans (the native ones, that is) to a man. Just for laughs, we then put some cannons on the pirogues, allowing the Indians to fire back. One thing led to another, and we ended up with a 40-cannon frigate sailing in this lake. After that, coming to a thought of “well, maybe it will be the pirates after all?” was only a matter of time.

RPS: What is Taleworlds role in development?

Souslov: TaleWorlds’ role is very important; the project wouldn’t be possible without the massive engine tweaking done by the Turkish side. We exchange ideas on interface, gameplay and visuals daily, and take TaleWorlds’ critique to heart.

RPS: Will historical pirates and/or other characters feature in the game and, if so, what role will they play?

Souslov: A plenty of them. Morgan, L’Olonnais, de Grammont; if he left a mark on the Caribbean, chances are high he is in. Same applies to the governors and captains of England, France, Spain and the Netherlands. We even model them all after their authentic, or at least widely recognized, portraits. You can also expect to meet a few famous fictional characters from that time and place. Their role in the game is essentially the same as the Mount & Blade’s kings and their vassals – they govern their towns, sail about on their fleets, do battle one another on land and sea, and from time to time band together to wreck some English colonies for the glory of Spain. Or the other way around. Or tell their respective Viceroy or Governor General to bite it, and go join the Brethren of the Coast.

RPS: Is the game a sandbox or is there a plot to follow?

Souslov: Sandbox all the way! Frankly, making a plot-driven campaign wasn’t really our cup of tea. Considering how much time and efforts it eventually consumed, we wonder why didn’t we dump the idea straight away and implemented siege artillery instead. So, adventures in the Caribbean are fully open-ended. We do plan to implement a few short story arcs involving several quests each though, to flesh out the world.

RPS: How complex is the integration of naval combat into the Mount and Blade engine?

Souslov: Too complex. Actually, we spent a year and a half doing just that. Might have to do with our limited brain capability, but even the unlimited capability of the modding scene couldn’t solve the issue adequately yet. In the end, we’ve got some priceless assistance from the Turkish team, and the desperation of our own has pushed us forward. There was a time we were almost about to cancel the project, but eventually the solution was found and the bloody frigate started sailing and ceased neighing.​

This actually sounds like it might be a fun time killer.

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