I was given the chance to ask Cubical Drift, creators of their recently Kickstarted game Planets³, about their upcoming title. Make sure to check out my Kickstarter Quicklook of Planets³ for more info on the game. Here is the Q&A in all its glory.
Q. When watching the trailer my gut reaction was The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and its wacky-ness, maybe it was the music paired with the spaceship and the square shaped planets. How do you guys see this universe that you have created?
A. Ha-ha, you could see that we like this, yes. We built our universe from reality, but obviously we are a little far from it now! We see the universe we created as a step to show people what can be done with our tools. We hope to see many others universe other than our own.
A. Planets³ is all about bringing a story over a voxel world. Obviously if Minecraft didn’t exist I don’t think we would have made Planets³. Inspiration comes from other RPG’s or adventure games like Skyrim, Mass Effect, and Zelda. But also from physical games like Lego or other movies like Star Wars.
A. First its art will be different; the multiple block shapes allow for a real diversity of creation. As you can see in the concept art, it is really something else. Second, is the vehicle system: it will be the creative feature of the game.
Q. What type of wildlife and specific habitats can we expect to see in the game?
A. As the game brings the player to visit different planets, you will find a lot of diversity of wildlife and inhabitants. Some of the planets will be like our earth, but we cannot do that for every planet, so you will have “alien” planets with a lot of unrealistic creatures.
Q. Explain the RPG elements for us…from the trailer I got a pretty good sense of the creation tools being similar but deeper with Minecraft, what will the RPG elements be like, what can we expect? Will we see special attacks, will there be magic in the game? Will there be lots of stats?
A. – About magic first: there will be no magic in Planets³, everything happens because it can be explained by technology. However it does not prevent having some sci-fi elements!
– Special attacks will come from special weapons.
– There will be some stats (life, strength, stamina and athletics) to level up by doing actions (taking damage, using tools, running…). Other stats (armors, noise, tech lvl) will come from gear.
Planets³ is an RPG with all of that involved. There will be a storyline with a lot of quests, characters that will accompany you in your adventure; some of them will help you to progress. As well we wanted to bring the construction aspect into the quests: some of them will ask you to build specific structures.
A. Race to Space will contain around 10 planets, and the story line will bring players to visit almost all of them. We hope to make a storyline that will last more than 10 hours, but it’s too early to talk about that today. Plus it will depend on the players. Players can choose to only focus on the main storyline, without exploring, without doing any of the random quests.
A. Our side quests system will somewhat work like this. You have the freedom to explore the world. But beware, harder zones implies harder monsters.
A. Weapon deterioration will be low, weapon and armor will last “long”, and you can always repair your damaged items. We do want players to craft one item and use this one item for a long time. We do not want players to craft the same item10 times. Extra detail will serve to improve the stats of an object a little (damage for example) or change the type of an object (for example does it cut or does it knock).
Q. Why did you decide to split the game, with the first half Planets³: Race to Space due for Fall 2015, and the full games release Planets³: Space Enemies? Was the intent to get the game out to the players as soon as possible since the complete game has a 3-year development? Or is the project so ambitious it needed to be split up?
A. At the beginning we didn’t want to release the game in 2 parts. But we could not ask for backers to wait for 4 years before being able to play the game. So we decided to split the game in two parts. The backers will then being able to play the game sooner.
Q. If the game does not get funded to the full $1 million amount needed for Space Enemies to be created, will the campaign in Race to Space be a complete story?
A. Space Enemies will then depend on the sales of Race to Space, and as such cannot be guaranteed. So we will not be changing the Race To Space story.
Thank you for this opportunity to speak with me about your game. I think that it is a wonderfully beautiful and ambitious game, and has all the stuff that I thought was missing from Minecraft, if I may be so bold. I hope and wish that it gets fully funded, as I can see myself sinking an inordinately unhealthy amount of time into it. Best of luck Cubical Drift! Thanks!