We were quite shocked, and yet very pleased, to see Naughty Dog releasing a new cooperative mode for Uncharted 2. After so many denials of ever seing new co-op content we thought it was a lost cause. But alas a new co-op mode still came. Called Siege Mode, this unique survival style co-op mode adds two new maps and a host of trophies for you and two of your friends to enjoy.
We had a chance to chat with Naughty Dog Game Director Justin Richmond, Game Designer, Robert Cogburn, and Community Strategist, Arne Meyer, about the choice, future and popularity of co-op modes in the game.
Co-Optimus: How popular do you find the Co-op modes compared to the versus multiplayer? Does this surprise you?
Justin Richmond: The Co-op modes are some of our most popular game types. Deathmatch is the most popular, followed closely by Co-op. This isn’t a huge surprise; in fact we were hoping that Co-op would be popular with players who were not huge fans of traditional competitive online game modes (Deathmatch, CTF, etc.) as well as the regular online shooter fans. There is something very satisfying about jumping in and taking down a common foe with some friends. This is why we worked so hard to get our Co-op mode working in matchmaking, which we’ve found is something that most games don’t implement, so that even if none of your friends were online, you could still enjoy it.
Robert Cogburn: Co-op was seen as critical mode of the Uncharted 2 multiplayer experience. From the onset we were determined to make create something that would resonate with online players and we are very pleased to see just how popular it remains today. It was the popularity of Co-op that led to the creation of Siege mode and Naughty Dog is very excited to bring this mode to the Co-op community.
That's just not nice.
Co-Optimus: When was the decision made that there would be separate Co-op modes and no campaign Co-op mode? What lead to this decision?
Justin: Very early on. We never want to have to compromise on the story in the single player part of the game. We felt that allowing Co-op in the Campaign would hinder our ability to meet the stated goal of the project, which was to basically make a Hollywood action movie that you could play.
Co-Optimus: How long has Siege mode been under development? Did you know at the game's release that you would be working on additional Co-op modes, or is this a case where the community has influenced development?
Justin: It has been in development for around 4 months. We knew at release that we would be doing downloadable content, but we weren’t quite sure what it was going to be yet. We hoped that Co-op would be popular enough to warrant new modes being developed, and the community let us know that it was hungry for both new Competitive and Co-op content loud and clear. We like to give the fans what they want!
Robert: Just under 4 months. There was a significant amount of iteration on it and we're pretty excited to introduce Siege mode. Once we saw just how popular Co-op was after launch, and how vocal the community was about it, we were determined to add it.