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Published on June 26th, 2008 | by simeon

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Crash: Mind Over Mutant Q&A:

Answered by: The Radical Team!

Is there really going to be online play in Crash Bandicoot: Mind Over Mutant?

Um, no? Was that a trick question? Who said there was? They shall be forced to eat 100 wumpa fruits and drink 100 wumpa whips while doing the Crash dance. Seriously, we are looking to find the best application for Crash online in the future, but not in MoM. We believe there are a lot of people who like playing Crash Bandicoot multiplayer together in the same room. To have any chance of online in the ever-so-brief Mind over Mutant development schedule, we would have had to sacrifice coop play, and that’s not a sacrifice we believed our players would want to make.

In Crash Bandicoot: Mind over Mutant, will Cortex be really evil like he was in the original Crash 1 and 2?

Absolutely, he’s in charge and gloriously, indeed pointlessly evil in this one. For too long he’s been sort of hanging out with other villains and not acting like that’s his N on all the evil lairs. He’s just as big a part of the franchise as Crash and it’s time people remember it! People like you! And I suppose Crash too.

When are we going to learn more about N.Brio? (And could you please reveal one of his quote’s so I can put it in my signature?)

Well, I suppose you’ll learn something the very moment you start the game. N.Brio’s a classic Crash character so were very mindful about re-introducing him to the story. It had to make sense and be true to all the various insanities he’s known for. N.Brio after all is the guy that really invented everything! Cortex’s whole life is an evil sham based on N.Brio’s hard work. Now then, you want a quote do you?

N.Brio: Well you were wrong and I was right! As right as Betamax!

Is Dingodile going to be in the new Mind over Mutant? What about any other old characters?

Oh Dingodile! That character is like the white whale in my life. I really want to do him but I want to do him properly. He was almost in this game but to do him I would have really short changed the other characters. I mean it’s easy to get the humour right with him but everything we know about him suggests a lot of gameplay opportunities and difficulties we’d then pick up as well. I’ll keep pushing to get him in and his fans can keep writing letters asking for his inclusion until eventually we reach some sort of mutant crocodile tipping point.

Will the Playstation 2 version of Mind over Mutant have a lot of content removed? Any examples of how it will be different?

Very little content was removed actually. The only thing we weren’t able to squeeze into the game was Coco as the second playable character in coop mode. It’s not her character model that’s the problem, but animations. To make Coco believable as a platforming, fighting character we felt she needed her own combat style and moves. It would have looked too weird if she moved the exact same way Crash does. And so she has her own animations. She looks great, but animations take a lot of memory. There’s not much you can do in code to compress them either.

Will Mind over Mutant feature a “battle tutorial” where Crash could use Mario as a punching bag? With realistic noises and sounds. Such as…” Mama Mia, I suck!”

Ha ha, that would be great. And I personally would love to be sued by a large corporation with unlimited resources – what could be more fun than that? We do have a battle tutorial though, just not with your favorite plumber. It will teach you how to break enemy blocks (as in CoTT) but more importantly trains you how to do Crash’s new counter attacks.

What sort of game is Mind over Mutant? Is it mostly a platform game, a fighting game, or a little bit of both?

Can I say “Action/Adventure” without being too generic? 🙂 There is combat, but much less of a dominating force as it was in CoTT. Much more platforming not just for Crash, but through the creature’s unique abilities too. Our goal was a 50/50 split this time and I think we’ve come close to achieving that.

Will there be some sort of replay value besides the rewards and achievements in Mind over Mutant?

Personally I find the biggest replay value is in maxing out the upgrades for all creatures. After you’ve beat the game, you can continue to make your mutant’s stronger (it’s easier in fact, since a number of cheats become available at that point).

Spyro The Dragon: Dawn of the Dragon Q&A:

Answered by: Mike Graham, Associate Producer, Sierra Entertainment

Why was Etranges Libellules selected for the latest Spyro adventure?

Etranges Libellules had caught our attention when they released “Arthur and the Invisibles” (based on the movie). We were all very impressed with the artistic style and the visual quality that they were able to achieve on the PS2. Based on their prior experience with platform adventure games, we knew they would be a good fit. But at the time, we were waiting for a few decisions to be made regarding Spyro, and weren’t really sure when we would be able to release the final chapter in the “Legend” trilogy. It just so turned out that the timing was perfect. The call was made for a 2008 next-gen release and they had a team ready to hit the ground running. It became very clear early on that they were all very passionate about making great games, and we knew were onto something very special.

Will this be the last Spyro game or are there plans to make more after this finale?

Without a doubt, there will be more Spyro games in the future. The entire purpose of the trilogy was to re-establish the characters and the world in a way that would allow for growth and expansion. We’ve only scratched the surface.

Will there be any other playable characters in The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon?

Spyro and Cynder are the only playable characters in Dawn of the Dragon. This is a story about dragons after all. More specifically, this is a story about Spyros destiny and a story of Cynders redemption. We wanted our main characters to have a lot of abilities and really be the stars. Often times, when more playable characters are introduced, you end up having to spread the time and effort across so many mechanics, that the end result feels diluted and simple. We chose to focus all of our efforts on giving players a deeper experience with the two main characters.

Will the Spyro’s moves be a bit more diverse than those in The Eternal Night?

The ability to fly alone has totally opened up Spyro’s move set. I really can’t wait for players to get their hands on it. It feels very fantasy and magical to fly and glide on the air. But that aside, Spyro’s elemental abilities are much more diverse than they were in “The Eternal Night”. Plus Cynder has all new elements that have never appeared in any Spyro game.

How long is The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon going to be?

Seeing as how we aren’t finished with it yet, it’s hard to estimate how long the game will end up. We’ve taken a “best of both worlds” approach in terms of level design to allow player to play the game at their own pace. We have way more hidden gems and collectible items than any of the previous games in the trilogy. Not all of them are necessary in order to progress, but they certainly help. Any player that wants to blast through the game as fast as they can are certainly welcome to try, but it will be much more challenging for them. Players that take their time to explore will have an easier time in the end.

What exactly do we mean by the element “fear” for Cynder? I’m imagining moves that scare the daylight out of enemies to send them running or freeze them to the spot.

Part of the inspiration for FEAR came from a various popular fantasy books – such as Dragon Lance. Dragons give off Dragon Fear, which frightens anyone in the vicinity to near paralysis. There are a lot of really interesting magical abilities that some of the darker dragons have, not just in that series, but in many fantasy books that deal with dragons.

Is it going to be harder to power up your moves in The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon?

Powering up Spyro and Cynder’s elemental abilities will function similarly to the way it has in the first two games of the series. But that’s not to say it will be easy. A large amount of spirit gems (experience points) will be hidden in gem clusters throughout each level so players aren’t just blasting through everything and getting too powerful. In addition to elemental upgrades, we have included a lot of health and magic upgrades, as well as armor pieces. Each armor piece has an impact on your character. Some pieces increase your attack speed, some reduce damage – there’s quite a diverse list of armor that players can equip once they are found.

Will the levels in The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon be larger than in previous games?

Not all of the levels are the same size. Each area in the game is the length and size that we felt they needed to be in order to maintain the proper pacing for the story and gameplay. Having said that, we do have quite a few areas that are very large – much larger than anything we have done in the series so far.

What’s the purple bar between Cynder and Spyro on the HUD?

The purple bar that has been seen in a few screenshots is a rough (not final) version of the Fury Meter. Furies will be slightly different in this year’s game. We like the presentational aspect of furies – it’s neat to see a buildup and a massive explosion of magic and energy. We just wanted the aftermath to be more interactive. So now furies will temporarily give Spyro and Cynder special powers.

Can you use Cynder to play the entire game?

Yes, players can choose to use either Spyro or Cynder throughout the entire game. Of course, there are some areas in the game where the player will need to use an ability of one of the dragons in order to advance, but aside from those instances, it’s really up to the player.


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