BlackSite: Area 51 - Interview

BlackSite took us somewhat by surprise at Midway's Las Vegas gamers day last week; its intuitive squad controls and truly squelching atmosphere give off a promising vibe we didn't expect, and it could turn out to be a very notable FPS release when it hits Xbox 360, PS3 and PC later this year.

At the same event we got a chance to sit down with the game's producer Zack Wood, who answered all of the burning questions we had after our short play-through. Here's what he had to say...

Could you give us a brief pitch for people who aren't familiar with BlackSite?

Zack Wood: BlackSite: Area 51 is a first-person shooter coming for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. It's loosely based on the previous-gen Area 51 game in that the secret military base brings with it a lot of mystery and conspiracy theories.

This time around it's not a sequel per se, it's more a game inspired by the previous game; we have a new set of characters and a brand new story that's much more rooted into the fiction of what's going on in today's world - what are we afraid of today? So terrorism, world wars, powerful governments that are secretive to the population - things like that are rooted into our fiction.

We definitely want to bring the sci-fi element to something that's more familiar to people, like down the street from your neighbor's house - that's kind of what the premise is for the game.

What, if at all, have you learned or taken from the first game then?

Wood: Really just the lore and the location itself. The player will go back to Area 51 to the wrecked environment and face-off against the ultimate menace in our game, without giving too much of the story away. But that's really the only thing that binds the two, this really is a different game with a totally different story.

It's also got a totally different play-style in that you have a squad now, so you've always got at least two squad mates with you, and youend up being the leader. It's very accessible as well; one-button squad controls allow you to send someone to a location or interact with a target very easily.