Co-Optimus: How many co-op missions are there?
Andy: Currently there are 4 main co-operative missions. I know your next question and right now we can’t comment on the possibility of future DLC additions.
Co-Optimus: How many players are supported in co-op? Offline/Online/Split Screen?
Andy: Up-to-four players can join forces in Black Ops mode through their online connection, whether that’s Playstation Network, Xbox Live or on PC.
Co-Optimus: Is there anything players can do in co-op that you can't do in the other modes? For instance revive a fallen comrade?
Andy: We have felt that it is important to create a consistent player experience regardless of what mode or game type the player is playing in. We even wanted this to apply to the player’s opponents. That is, if an opponent could do XYZ in multiplayer then the AI need to be able to do XYZ in black ops and vice versa. And this same principle applied to what the player can and cannot do. This is because we did not want the player to learn one set of habits for co-op and then have to learn another set of habits for multiplayer. So, no, there is no functionality that is unique to Black Ops, except perhaps, the concept of the health pack – which makes sense to have in Black Ops but not in multiplayer.
Co-Optimus: Will players be able to specialize in the game? For instance someone taking up the role of a sniper and covering their team.
Andy: We are all about players specializing in game, which is one of the primary reasons for the weapon customization system. But, rather than assigning a specific role to specific characters or classes, we would rather enable players to play the way they want to play without being forced into anything. To that end, if a player wants to customize their weapon and create a sniper rifle, while their buddy loads out with a machine gun, then the type of tactics described above would work perfectly. And in the weapon customization, the one player could load out with gear to up his survivability, while the sniper can increase his lethality. So, yes, players can specialize in game, but it is not forced upon the player.
Co-Optimus: As a fully downloadable title there's seem to be quite a bit of content in Blacklight: Tango Down. How does the development process compare to that of a big budget title? There's a big price difference between $15 and $60, does making it download only cut a lot of costs?
Andy:We’re developing the game as we would any “full price” title. We want it to look great, play great and have enough variety, personality and challenge to keep gamers coming back for more, to climb the ranks, to grow their in-game characters and earn those weapon unlocks to set themselves apart from the pack.
You have to keep in mind, while delivering a game for $15 implies “less,” we actually realize a lot of savings by avoiding the traditional boxed product route. For one, the creation and manufacturing of packaging, along with the cost to ship product and the cut that retailers take of the sale. Not to mention the competition for prime shelf space and holding that shelf space while other titles continually come out. Delivering games through digital channels is a more efficient, more personal and a more effective way to create great games, and we’re really excited to be on the forefront of this emerging trend.
DLC has obviously been exploding recently and there have been some very successful titles, but most games have been somewhat limited in design and the amount of content they deliver. There’s nothing wrong with creating a somewhat “old school” styled DLC game, but with Blacklight: Tango Down, we want to push the boundaries of what gamers will expect from digitally delivered titles. We’re doing this by using top flight technology, delivering best-in-class FPS action, and including game modes and features that FPS fans are accustomed to paying big bucks for. Including Black Ops co-op mode is a key part of this, and the ability to go the extra mile is partially made possible by the fact that digital delivery provides us with so many advantages.
Thanks for your time Andy!
Blacklight: Tango Down launches on the Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and PC this summer for $15.