Chances are, you've never heard of Saboteur. Until last week, most of the people in our office hadn't either. But then thefirst amazing screenshots arrived - gripping cinematic tableaux of WWII Paris with stark black-and-white blending seamlessly into sparkling, vibrant color. Suddenly, we wanted to know everything about Saboteur.
Fortunately, the producer and lead designer of the title were happy to oblige. Turns out, the game's more than just an artistic experiment... it's also an open-world game, a stealth game, an action game and even a climbing game. It's got guns, grenades, instant kill moves and a unique, bar brawl-inspired melee system. It's noir, it's jazzy and it's more about personal revenge than historical accuracy. It's Sin City and it's Schindler's List... combined.
In other words, we've got a lot of ground to cover.
GamesRadar: All people really know about Saboteur at this point is its title and setting. What else can you tell us about the game's premise?
Phil Hong, Producer: Saboteur is a personal revenge story set in Nazi-occupied Paris. Our hero's name is Sean, who happens to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. A very specific Nazi officer and his cohorts have taken out some of Sean's closest friends and family and, unbeknownst to them, set off a raging hero on a personal quest. Sean gets caught up in the larger global conflict, tied in with the French Resistance and the SOE (British Special Operations Executive), but his focus is singular. Get these guys and take them down. We're not talking about how the war ends. We know how that goes and we've played a lot of great games that have covered that ground. In our research of WWII, we discovered that there were a lot of great stories about personal people, real people, who became these legends. And they were not wearing uniforms.
GamesRadar: We read somewhere that Saboteur takes place in an "alternate" WWII... different from the one that actually occurred. Is that true?
PH: I wouldn't necessarily say "alternate." No, that's not true. But I would say the game is heavily stylized and fictionalized in the amount of occupation in our representation, and how we transform Paris. Specifically, in our core game mechanic called the "Will To Fight." People might think of that alternate thing just because of our art direction.